Re-living my First Marathon
As I get nearer to my second full marathon at Mumbai in January 2011, the thought of my first one in January 2010 keeps coming back. Here is the story of my first marathon –
Had a good run till about 30km, well on track to finish within 5 hours. However by then the Mumbai heat had started getting to me (and most of the runners around me) – it was 34-35 degrees and the sun was beating down relentlessly (most of my training was in the cold/freezing Delhi winters). The killer was the run over the Bandra-Worli Sealink – 6 kms, absolutely no shade, no cooling breeze and the final straw no water for 6kms !! First time I felt like just completely giving up, lying down and asking someone to pick me up and transport me home – and there was still about 12kms to go!
I thought my training (besides the regular runs over the last few years, I had done a specific 20 week program – Hal Higdon at www.halhigdon.com, which went up to a 33km max run) had prepared me for the full 42kms; but this experience was truly humbling! Well, I finally crossed the finish line making sure that I ran at full speed for the last 2.5kms, and finished in about 5hrs26min (430th finisher overall and 52nd in the Veteran group).
The first thought after crossing the line was – never ever will I run again!! Also felt disappointment that I didn’t finish in 5hrs! Dragged my way back home (staying with the in-laws in Mumbai), had a few hours of fitful sleep, woke up absolutely stiff, knees rigid, hamstrings, quads, glutes and all the other named/unnamed muscles in the body paining. Ate my lunch/dinner around 7pm – once again vowed to never run again. In bed once more around 9pm.
Woke up next day and the legs felt 500% better, just some muscle ache – the type that actually feels nice! Read through the papers about the marathon; the realisation of having completed a momentous journey started creeping through. Opened up my computer and the first thing I started to look for is the schedule for the next marathon(s) !!
Next goal under 5 hours. It’s an addiction (some call it the runners high) can’t wait to get back to running !