By harpreet on Mar 19, 2007
I had trained for Chicago Marathon 2 years back as part of raising funds for Team Asha. I am not a runner and the intention was to push myself outside my usual comfort zone.
I was carrying a film camera and clicked a picture at every mile to document the run. As I said, I am not a runner and I needed proof for the bragging rights. Imagine my disappointment when I thought I had lost the camera on the way back home.
Recently I found the camera and got the pictures developed. Time has eaten away most of the pictures and I am left with 5 grainy ones.
The thing that stood out for me on that particular day was
- Chicago was freezing in October and we had to line up at the starting line at 6:00 am in shorts and everyone was shivering in the cold.
- The enormity of the crowd at the starting line was something I was unprepared for. It reminded of the VT station in Bombay, except everyone here was headed in the same direction. The air was pregnant with anticipation. Have a look at the starting line, the line starts at the buildings
- Mile 2 picture is of a better quality. This is where my tendonitis injury showed up.
By mile 17, I was totally famished; my tendonitis had been hurting badly for 15 miles and everything was doom and gloom. This was the ideal place to see my family (parents and wife) , friends and a muffin. My parents had flown in from Kuala Lumpur to cheer me. Sebonti and Sudeepto who drove from Detroit to cheer me - I met them directly at mile 17 after 3 years - good reunion. My thoughts moved from doom and gloom to "its just 9 more miles lets wrap it up". I actually laughed out loud at that thought - this is what good training does to you. Here I was - somebody who had never run 500 metres before, six months after training I was telling myself to wrap it up - just 9 more miles to go. Thanks to the Asha coaches - Tony Fong and Rajeev Char and Rajeev Patel!
Another thing that stands out in memory was that mile 10 - I could hardly run as my tendonitis pain was getting bad to worse. I was feeling sorry for myself. At that moment, a man with no legs, prosthetics starting below the knees overtook me - I was humbled and told myself to shut the f up and keep running. He was inspiring!!!
That was a good day - the sense of accomplishment was invigorating. I think, I need to pick up running again.