Itni subah kaun uthega, who bhi Sunday ke din daudne. No ways!
(Who would wake up the dawn? That too on a Sunday to run)
Is that what you say, when somebody asks you for a marathon?
While I’m writing this, I recollect my first marathon. 10 Kilometers. Back in 2017. Oct 15, 2017, to be specific. I got in it as an adventure. No practice. Nothing. Only and only to add to my list of “happening-things-done-this-year”. At that point of time, I really didn’t know what it takes to run that many kilometers. Just that, because a friend was running, I too plunged in. Well, for a beginner, 10 kilometers was quite a distance, which I realized only after encountering it. In schools, I’ve been an athlete. However, for years I haven’t been practicing. But, that day, I believed my GUT to take that race. They say, GUT never lies. And, since then I perpetually believed my GUT.
Oct 15, 2017:
Clock hits 3 am. Alarm beeps. I snooze it for 10 minutes. It beeps again. Trying very hard only not to snooze it again, I am finally awake. I had also convinced my roommate. I wake her up too. We are basically nervous. Not because we had to run 10 kilometers, but clearly because the starting point is Singhgad and we stay in Vishrantwadi. These two places are poles apart. Marathon organizers, in advance, have very well instructed the runners to be on time. Sorry! BEFORE TIME. 45 minutes before flag-off. Which means 5 am sharp. More than the marathon we are more anxious about reaching on time. Hell! Yeah.
We book a cab and fortunately the cab arrives on time. And bingo! 5 am we are at the base. Night is departing. The sun is prepping to rise. I’m shivering and while I’m trying to put my hands in my pockets to cover them off the cold, someone whistles out from a little far. “Pheeeewww…Warm up, Guys, Warm Up!”. Runners scattered around follow the instructor. He’s signaling them to gather in the center. While I’m unwillingly taking my hands off the pocket, I drag myself there where everybody’s trying to move their hands, legs, neck etc etc. on the counts of 1, 2, 3.
And, now comes the time.
Once again, the whistle blares. This time more high-pitched. Louder than before. It just wakes up everyone.
The instructor counts-
(I can sense butterflies in my stomach. Feet numb. Hands frozen. And, heart almost failed.)
(Raising the flag high)
The front runners kick starts the race. Other runners follow them. So does me. After 1 hour 45 minutes, I’m at the finishing line. Heart is beating fast. I can hear its strokes. Loud and lucid. Face is dripping sweat. Clothes all gone sweaty. Cheeks gone red-pink. They are illuminating glow that it appears I just got a facial done from a saloon. I love it. Secretly, I say to myself, “girl, you should do this often”. The same moment, I sense my feet bones, joints, and muscles. Are they wrecked or something?
The other side there are hues of Yellow-Orange. Sun illuminating bright. Brighter than anything. That’s the dawn’s bliss. Witnessing that along with the euphoria of finishing the race is overwhelming. Since then my interest for running grew more. And, over the years I took up several endeavors of running.
26th May 2019:
Another race. Another adventure. Same story. Anxiety kept me awake since 3 am. Left home at 4:30 am (so I could reach the starting point (Pashan) by 5 am). Flag off scheduled at 5:30 am. And, touching the finishing line is a most-awaited euphoric moment.
Mr. Coleman, the Scott & White Galloway Running Program Director, once said, “To me running is 80% mental.” While that’s stuck in my head, I’be becpem more keen on bulding endurance, regularly. Slow and steady. Walking or running a kilometer or two adds to daily fitness regime. Many say, marathons are tough. Yes! They are. They are exhausting. Challenging. Grueling too. Someday, only if you venture into this challenge, you know WHAT IT’S LIKE.
After reading this even if you are thinking to hit your first running adventure or run that extra mile, this blog would be a success. Marathons are organized by different organization in different cities. Check upcoming marathons in India.
One which I recently got through was LSOM- (Last Sunday of Month)- a community of passionate runners in Pune who hosts marathons every last sunday of month. The upcoming marathon is on 30th June (Pune). You got to register here.
RUN! RUN! RUN! There are enough opportunities. Don’t be a victim of “Itni subah kaun uthega, who bhi Sunday ke din.”
I say, because, it’s Sunday, Wake up. Run up. Make it a FUNday.
And, you have stories to tell your way.
It’s all in the head.
Either you DO it or NOT DO it.