5th Dec 2010, Gurgaon Half Marathon, couple of days after Delhi Half Marathon, I was waiting for this eagerly as chilling weather was exciting me to conquer this marathon with personal best.
Finally the day arrived, as the race was to start at 7:00 AM I reached ground zero one hour earlier to get warmed up for the run. Unlike Delhi marathon this event was small with around 200 people running for half marathon and approximately 50 people for full marathon.
Well deserved warm up session and race started on time. As the weather was too cold with temperature of around 15 Degree Celsius,I immediately accelerated my speed and started running at second position. I knew that I lost on speed in Delhi Half Marathon wherein I had to slow down the pace after 7KM, so I ensured that I keep the pace under control which I need to sustain till I finish 21 KM.
All the runners were much behind me till 4 KM and runner running at first position was too ahead, so I was almost running alone for sometime.
Uphill stretch after 4 KM
By the time I finished first 4KM I was well ahead of my target time but I knew that the pace is not sustainable till last mile. Marginal uphill stretch after 4 KM forced me to slowdown my speed little bit and then I could hear some noise behind me. There was a couple (foreigner) behind me and chatting continuously. I was wondering about their stamina, they were really amazing and slowly they overtook me well before 5KM. I tried my level best to match my speed with them, overtook them once but it was not sustainable for me, so they ran much ahead of me.
Cool weather and fantastic route
December month in Northern India becomes quite chilled and the same was experienced on this day in Gurgaon as well. So this was the time to do best in marathon and enjoy the run. The route was on the outskirts of Gurgaon city (which I had never seen before), the road in the middle of fields and villages with marginal steeps and downhill run. The route was completely uncrowded and participants were also scattered everywhere on route.
First half of the run
Marathon Man -Dr Roy running his 107th Marathon at age of 78 years
I met an old man who was running his 107th marathon at the age of 78 years. He was running for full marathon which is 42 KM. His spirit motivated me a lot and I just stopped and said him "Dr Roy You are source of motivation for me". I found him really a jolly and lively man who has immense mental and physical strength. I really admire him for what he has done at the age of 78 years.
Finished Half Marathon
By the time I was about to complete my half marathon I started feeling pain in feet but I did not let that pain dominate my speed and I finished 21 KM run well within my target and actual time I took was 1 hours 58 minutes. My Delhi Marathon timing was 2 hours 6 minutes and this time I had decided to bring it below 2 hours.
Running for me has become an integral part of my life. It not only gives immense pleasure but makes one physically and mentally strong. My next marathon target would be to finish the run in 1 hours 40 minutes. Lets wait and watch what comes next.