SCMM 2016

After 4 editions of SCMM half marathons, it was now high time to go for a full. I knew what it takes to run a full. A planned training, a balanced diet, lot of mental strength and especially no injuries. Before I go further I would mention it right now. This is a story of a failure. Among all success, a failure is important and need to be remembered as it always leaves back few lessons. That's why am writing this down.

Today is 29/1/2016. About 10 days back I was in Mumbai. I knew am not gonna run this time. I was there to just promote EGWS through the T-shirt I wore during my run, with a fishing cat at the back. And also to meet my friends (many of them actually). Why I ended up in this state? 3 months back I made a calendar for my practice. I started slow with a half marathon, then a 26km run and then was the verdict session of  31km. All these session with me was Ravi Iyer as a friend and also a motivator to run more and more. He was also alongside when we competed for the triathlon a month ago.

I was the happiest person on earth the day I breached 30km mark. I was excited for the next run of 35k which I had planned to do 2 weeks later. But before i could reach there I did a blunder. After 31k I had a slight knee pain and next day was the 10k run as part of hyderabad's flagship event (where Milkha Singh also came to motivate us). I have no idea why that craziness as I remember it was the most unhappy run and I was dragging myself with a paining knee during the last 3-4 kms (just for a freak medal?!). I thought I will recover from this injury soon, but my travel plans in the next few weeks and shifting my house, I could not recover. The next attempt to run in Dec last week was a big failure and now I was sure, Mumbai is not gonna happen. I cannot explain the torture of not playing my favorite sport, the Ultimate frisbee (till today as am still recovering).

On the D-day me with Anirudha and Amit, reached the starting line in time at 5.30am. I was here just to be part of the runners for as long as I can could carry on. Not risking my knee any further was my agenda. I jogged slowly for 1st 7-8k taking leisure breaks. The 5:30 bus was always around so I was getting confidence, maybe this will happen.

Ravi was not in any better state. He had sprained his ankle 2 weeks back and moreover he forgot to bring his running shoes to Mumbai. He was running with 3 layers of socks only. We decided to run together, but he was ahead and I received a call from him "am gonna do it, am feeling good". I was happy about it and said my words "go for it bro!".

I was happily running and I crossed the 10k mark. The crowd of Mumbai was as usual, at its best. Cheering, singing and motivating at every step. I was jogging better now and was excited to take this up beyond the finish line. Unlike all my earlier runs, I did not have a songs playlist ready so I was just running holding my phone in hand (I even did not bring my running shots which I lended from Amit).

Now I received a call again. Ravi had given up at 12K mark. With his torn socks and paining ankle he was waiting for me at the Nariman point. I reached there and we both happily chatted for a while. I told him I will do a half atleast as am feeling good. He warned me once I am on the Bandra-Worli link bridge there would be no looking back. I calculated and I realized I will have to cross the bridge to complete a half marathon atleast so I was up for it.

two screwed up runners..

3Km later I was now running on the bridge enjoying the view of Mumbai's skyline on one side and the Arabian sea on other. I was slow I knew but I was going very well but then it happened. At about 17Km mark my knee gave up. I could identify the pain, the pain that should be respected. Running is impossible now, any further attempt to run means ruining my soft tissues and screwing it up further. I was stranded now in the middle of this bridge and with no option but to just walk. Thankfully walking was not an issue. A brisk walk at about 6kmph was still something that can take me across the finish line (too much optimism :P). I tried to jog again after about 2kms but my knee gave me a painful answer right away. Yes, it will be a walk till the point I can carry it. I got my knees sprayed from medical team but not much help. There were a lot of runners around me, happily talking and running which was making me feel good. Then the swarm of Elite runners crossed us. We all awed at their pace. They were sprinting easily close to 20kmph.

I crossed the 21Km mark and I was done. I checked my map to see the nearest local train station. Mahim was 2km away so I walked till there to eventually catch my train to VT making it a 23Km overall. I enjoyed a vada pav near the station before boarding the train. Badly dehydrated I reached my hotel to hydrate myself and take a refreshing bath.

The day proceeded with meeting lot of old friends and eating a LOT of food. The pics below captures the same :)

 I learned many lessons but among all, running is not about competing and achieving landmarks, most important is to enjoy your run and your life around it. I was not doing this since last 2 months. Run less but enjoy more is my mantra now :)


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