I started training for running half marathons in 2011, mostly due to lack of challenges in life- which any crazy type A mum of crazier two year old type A twins (I’m sure about this one!) would understand!!
My existence had gone from being a fulfilled medical professional to a 24 hour dairy farm and a sleep deprived nut farm!
And the benefits of pounding the streets at 5 AM to blaring music were more than I was prepared for! Of course there are the benefits even the non-runners are bored to death over. Having a great body, getting all those likes on all those running pics after every run, blah blah blah. But there are these benefits no one told me about!!
1. Knowledge
Deep deep knowledge. How much and how to hydrate and carbohydrate how many hours before each run. Intense information on the benefits of running shoeless, shirtless, braless, padless, and you-name-it-less! Information on all kinds of diets … freegan to vegan and everything in between. As you can see everyone can write after that! At least a blog if not a book!
2. Partying… Runner’s style
There will be parties after running, and you will be subjected to running after partying! (Yes, we have suffered some drunk guy races as well)
3. Eating/ Drinking/ Breakfast places
Since all the runners are complete foodies, you will become a completely updated gastronomical genius!
4. Hobbies
You will pick up at least one of these from your runner friends along the way. Writing, photography, baking, cooking, painting, sailing, surfing, golfing. You see runners are an interesting lot!
5. Other forms of fitness
Cycling, swimming, trekking, weight training, pilates, zumba. And here you will arrive at a point, where people will begin to doubt your sanity.
6. The joys of match making
If not for yourself, for the others. Please no queries on personal chats for this one! Unfortunately all my attempts at playing Cupid have so far been unsuccessful (so far….)
7. Marathon tourism
Here’s your opportunity to travel on the pretext of running a marathon. Places you would otherwise not want to and places you have always wanted to… From Satara to Switzerland, Bombay to Berlin, Chennai to China, Leh to London!!
8. Forging great friendships
This is especially close to my heart. I have made friends with the most remarkable people, and had unforgettably good times! Running and otherwise!
9. Events and groups
Introduction to events like Bandra NCPA and groups like MRR. MRR was great help in getting started and staying motivated. From the Hal Higdon charts to running routes, got prompt responses to all my queries. Got running company and running events. Got my clever little tips from how to stuff shoes with papers to run the next rainy day and how to runner-knot my shoe laces! And somewhere when time management became an issue, I got hooked onto Bandra NCPA runs for their fuss free organisation. Most of the half marathons were way too far out, some were poorly organised. Bandra NCPA always started on time, had among the best routes in Bombay a person could choose, and fantastic company! Followed by the usual happy jubilant pictures, breakfast with running buddies and camaraderie.
10. Last but not the least. You can get people to read stuff you write… Which no one would otherwise!!
JJ Have a great day!!
Dr. Vandana Rajesh.