Thursday, February 19, 2009


Wednesday evening. 5K. 26 minutes. Swollen Legs. Runner's High!

Monday, February 2, 2009

Bottleneck (Training Day - 1 Feb, 2009)

I'm writing this as I watch Stargate. The original.

This is part of being me in 2009. Multi-tasking. I don't do that well. So, let's see how far that goes. As for Stargate, I'm not sure if I'll take to it quite. Bha recommends SG quite highly. I'm more a Battlestar Galactica/Firefly kinda guy.

But back to the bottle neck. There really is a lot to say. They might not make much sense together. But as discrete pieces of information, they might be useful.

But there's one piece that I don't want you to miss out. I did a 3 mile loop around Town Lake in Austin yesterday. And timed it at 35 minutes. I'm happy.

First off, I have to thank Murali and Sabhari for running with me. They are extremely seasoned runners. As I train for my 10k, Murali is training for his 50 miler. I think he is slightly embarrassed to be seen on this trail, running a 3 mile loop. But he doesn't show it. He seems to be having about as much fun as I am. And so is Sabhari.

First things first. I'm going to say something that's cliched in every possible way. You've probably heard every long distance runner say this. And its possibly the most common mistake beginners make. I was warned sufficiently too. And yet, I thought I could do better.

I started on a sprint.

Bad idea.

When you're running long distance, you run for time. And then you run for distance. Speed enters the picture when you've got yourself sufficiently covered on the other two fronts.

This realization makes me want to philosophize about life. But I'll resist.

So here we are, two minutes into the run, and I'm panting big time. If two little pigs had seen me at that point, they would have started running towards their wiser brother's brick house.

We walk a little. And reach a water fountain.

Murali tells me to hydrate. Water feels good. I lap up as much as I can. Sabhari warns me against over hydration. Over Hydration?

So the body has lots of water. And salt. We lose water. We fall down. We lose salt. We fall down. The trick is balance.

We run again. M and S keep pushing me. But I keep losing steam. We take walk breaks.

Find a pace that you're comfortable with, they tell me. It's not about running fast. It's about running at a pace that you think you can sustain.

So I slow down. I feel my breath coming back to me. We've done about half the loop. I think to myself... I want to run the rest of the distance. No walk breaks.

No walk breaks.

And so we go on.

I hit steady state.

I stop talking. I stop thinking. I stop looking at anything that doesn't deserve attention.

I breathe.

Suddenly, I can feel my body.

I can feel my heels strike the ground. I can feel my calves push back. I can feel my ankle twisting to keep me in balance.

My shins hurt a little. M tells me that long distance runners don't lift their legs when they run. That's energy wasted, he says. Pushing yourself up, when you should be pushing yourself forward. I realize that is not how I'm running. It comes with time he says. That's one more lesson learnt on the trail.

I'm tiring out again. This time its not about running out of steam. My legs hurt.

But I keep running. At this point, it's my mind that's doing the motoring.

That is about when I see the starting point. And I feel a new rush of blood...

3 miles. 35 minutes. Avg. pace 13 minutes a mile. Steady pace towards the end. About 12 minutes to a mile. Statistics from S's GPS watch.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Rs. 500

Day 1

Phew! A Saturday morning is something I haven't seen in a fairly long time now :)

And then today happened!

Just got done with my first day at Rogue.

First day was quite simple. We did a simple 20 minute run. 10 minutes out, and 10 minutes back in. We did some foot drills and stretches after. And closed with a short discussion on the goals of our program.

I have to say that I quite enjoyed Day 1. And I'm looking forward to the next 10 weeks!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Ten Thousand Meters

This is the altitude at which modern Jet airplanes fly.

This is also the distance I will be running on March 29, at the Statesman Capitol 10K.


If you know me well, you will be.

I am a theoretician. I can't play. I don't like to. I like books. But, I think rearranging my bookshelf is a chore. Physical exertion is quite alien to me.

In many ways, I'm just your guy next door. Someone quite typically in his late twenties. Still fresh from those dreamy years spent in college. Just waking up to the reality of adulthood. And Life.

I'm sometimes impatient with where I am, career wise. I look at Obama, and wonder why I am not where he is today. I conclude that it is because he is twenty years older. "All in good time...," I tell myself.

I like nice things. I want an iPhone. And a Porsche Boxter. My loyal steed, a Toyota Corolla, sometimes goes under appreciated.

And so on and on and on. I am like most people you meet. The similarities are so many...

And yet, there is one small difference.

I still dream. And believe, quite strongly, in the power of those dreams... That the world will be a better place. And that we can take it there. Together.

Which brings me to why I've started running... I'm running because I want to spread a message.

All of us know that education is important. We are where we are today, because of the good foundation that we got. We sometimes take that for granted.

There are many children out there who don't have access to this basic right. For some, its because of circumstance. For some, its because they don't have enough money. They have the same dreams that we do. And yet, they don't have the foundation to make it happen.

I believe I can make a difference in their lives. I believe you can too.

And so, I run.

I'm raising money to help the children at Gnanodaya. This is a school in Chennai, for healthy children of leprosy affected patients. The school provides food, shelter, and education to these children, free of cost to their parents, most of whom are below the poverty line.

Run with me. Support me. And consider donating to our cause.

There is one other thing... You have a good life. Celebrate that! Smile :)

Thank You!