Wednesday, December 9, 2009

First Full Marathon Experience

I was supposed to have ran Singapore Marathon last year but missed it out at the end. The Singapore ghost continued and was determined to complete this time. I started the preparation after ECR10 by gradually increasing the mileage from 30 kms/week to 60 kms/week in a span of 2-1/2 months. By the end of 2-1/2 months, I ended up having an injury and subsequently met with a minor accident which robbed 3 weeks of my preparation time. Ultimately, I was forced to change my plan to concentrate more on the completion rather than the timing. Hence I decided to do 4:1 (4 mins of running, 1-min walking). Mean time, I got very useful tips from VPS, Karthik, Navin, and Hari (Hyd) on how to face the D-day based on their own experiences.

On reaching Singapore, Ramesh, Shiva, and I shared a cottage which we had booked already. Ramesh's knowledge on various aspects of marathon is highly commendable. I got to learn quite a lot including how to keep a check on diet, to maintain salt content etc. In fact Ramesh is quite knowledgeable on other stuffs as well. At one stage he had to teach Shiva Aa ba ca da… :-). Oh boy we had real fun.

All of us were completely relaxed before and on the day of marathon. Race started dot at 5:30. I knew that one would get drenched with sweat during the first 5 kms as humidity level was quite high. So, I decided not to be ambitious but take it slowly and steadily. Since I am prone to loose more salts, I made sure to keep myself hydrated by drinking a sip of water & 100+ whenever provided. First hour went without much notice, had covered about 7 kms. I knew the pace was quite slow but wanted to keep this pace for next 5-6 hrs. I continued with 4:1 model in the 2nd and 3rd hr as well. I had completed half in about 2:55, by then I knew 5:30 was out of reach and started to try for a 6-hr completion. Next 2 hrs (4th and 5th hr) went on perfectly fine. I enjoyed the entire atmosphere, the music that was playing on my mp3 player, beach side view, and everything. Around 27 km’s mark, I met Sangeetha. We ran together till 31, and I insisted her to do a 4:1. I completed 35 kms in about 5 hrs, and knew that 6 hrs was within the reach. But after 36 kms, it was a bit difficult to move my feet and so gave up 4:1, tried 3:2, and even 2:1, but nothing worked. So I walked for about 10 mins and did a walk¬¬–run like what I did along with Ramani and Venu sir in ECR10. I managed to reach 40 kms around 5:50. During the 40th km, I could not run as emotions took-over, but managed to walk for next 1.5 kms and started running again only after seeing the “Finish line” just for “Snaps”?. My official timing is 6:10:55 secs.

I was completely normal after run and met Ramesh and Siva at the finish point. We went back to our cottage and took rest for some time and caught our flight to Chennai in the evening. The whole journey was a complete fun and I had a “whale of time” with Ramesh and Siva.