Monthly Archives for October 2015

We need to talk

Fitness, Fitness related, Marathons - Anupriya kapur - October 30, 2015

Runners evolve. There are some that take off on a moment’s notice, do a 50km and nobody ever knows about it except the trees and the birds. And they have my absolute respect and admiration. But for us lesser mortals running is about sharing. And talking. Lots of talking. Understandably, it can be annoying to non-runners. I thought this video captured this quirk that we all share wonderfully, “First Person To Run A Marathon Without Talking About It“. Watch it if you haven’t yet as it pokes fun at all of us. We all love talking about it and we all have our reasons,  here are some I could think of, would love to hear yours –

1) Only 1% of world population has ever run a full marathon. Beat that.

2) If you can talk about how much fun you had scuba diving or doing crossfit or zumba or about your vegan meal then I can talk about running.

3) If I didn’t talk about it, did I actually run it?

4) How do I inspire (or at least think I’m inspiring while actually I might be quite irritating) if I don’t talk about it?

5) I love the look on people’s faces when I say I ran 42.2 km.

6) Because I don’t know how to shut up if 4-6 months of my otherwise mundane life is devoted to it.

7) Running releases endorphins – endorphins get people (me) talking. Simple.

8) Makes Murakami happy. What you haven’t read “What I talk about when I talk about running”?

9) When I talk, I set targets and when I set targets with other people I do my damned best to keep them.

10) It’s one of the better ways to connect with people with common goals.

 

 

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esigara

Book Reviews - Ankit Chatterjee - October 29, 2015

Elektronik Sigara E Sigara

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We can be heroes, just for one day

For the soul, Marathons - Anupriya kapur - October 23, 2015

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love my Ultra Boost, perfect for long slow runs

Beaming with pride at the start line of Bengaluru half marathon with my 2:45 pacing flag tied to my waist, I was all set to pay back to the running community. I had a running buddy help me out with a perfect pacing plan (which eventually fell apart on the event day and that’s a story I would like to keep for another day).

I saw the faces all around – excited, nervous, apprehensive, scared, sleepless – for most runners in my bus, it was their first half, the only thing on their mind was that they wanted to finish the run in 3 hours or less. Most had not run a distance beyond 10km. That’s when it hit me. I had done my first half in 2:50, I had not trained much, was over hydrated, bloated and by the 15th km, I had wanted to kill someone yet it felt like the greatest achievement ever. 12109775_1210493648965724_5631013820408471990_o (1)

Somewhere along the way I had started taking being able to run certain distances with ease (fast or slow, it’s all relative), for granted. It obviously requires effort and discipline each and every time but since I have been running consistently, a 21 km had stopped bogging me down. While I was encouraging others, constantly talking to them, motivating them to keep moving, I was reminded of where it all starts from and where I had been a few years back. I felt a sense of immense gratitude for all the other runners who’ve helped me by giving me right advise, helping me with correct training plans, pep talks and training with me. 12032839_1211652642183158_2755513215581734754_o

We are all recreational runners at the end of the day and instead of cribbing about how most of us “new runners” are not training enough or doing the wrong thing, we need to help each other out. Of course personal goals are important but once in a while everyone can be a pacer.

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with a happy finisher 🙂

 Some comments I received on my mail which made my day – 

“Hi Anupriya – My aunt and I ran the Bangalore half last weekend, and I believe she clung on to your 2:45 bus for a while. She finished just behind you guys, but was extremely impressed and grateful for your encouragement. She said that unlike other buses she has seen, you were extremely encouraging and took the effort to push other runners one by one. Just wanted to reach out and thank you so much”.

“Thank you for pacing 2:45 bus. It was nice running with you some distance. And your encouragement and motivation for the last 4km was awesome. I was able to finish in 2:40:54 (Garmin) time. I was not able to thank you personally after the run. A big thank you. Keep running keep writing and keep inspiring. Cheers.”

“It was lovely meeting you at the Bangalore marathon and running with you. Though I slowed down after the 15th km. Thanks for all the tips and the inspiration to do better. Keep rocking and I will be following your blog more closely! “

 

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To Pee or not to Pee?

Fitness, Fitness related, Marathons - Anupriya kapur - October 12, 2015

While growing up and that too very early in life, I learned to hold the urge to pee. And then later to start drinking less water when I was out. It’s sad that because of a lack of clean public loos, most of us learn to find waysto avoid the most basic of bodily functions.

I was always scared of drinking water before my long training runs as well. At times, scared to even hydrate enough during the runs, knowing well that dehydration and not emptying the bladder can actually lead to UTI. And this continued for me till I decided to give up on my inhibitions. Not hydrating is simply not an option when you are out there.

And even though it’s the most natural of our bodily functions, we don’t talk about it openly. A fellow runner and blogger’s, article prompted me to write this.

Here are some of my pointers on how I get by, hope it would help –

1) I ensure my long training run routes includes 4/5 start hotels or clubs. I simply walk in to use the washroom- no one ever says anything – ever!.At times I have even done loops of 5 km for a 30km run just because I would pass a club with a clean loo.

2) You can’t really expect port-a-loos to be clean if you are the 400th person using it. Just getting used to this idea would help you tolerate the stink. You will feel blessed the next time you come across even a slightly cleaner loo.ppe 2

3) Have your friends/running buddies cover for you if you are running in areas which have enough trees, rocks and less traffic. Trust me it takes time but one gets used to it. One just needs to get rid of their inhibitions.

4) During marathons, I always carry a small pack of wet wipes in my running belt. It has come in handy in the past.

5) Choose to do trail fulls over road. Find a bush – cleaner and natural. I know that’s not a solution but the satisfaction of doing a full still remains. Plus you get tagged as “hard core”.

6) I used to over hydrate in nervousness even for shorter distances. But over time I have realised that hydration should be a part of daily routine rather than just before the run. For a 10km in decent weather, you really don’t need to drink much water.ppe 3

7) I haven’t tried the Pee Buddy, if anyone has and it works, I would appreciate if you can share your experience in the comments.

Do share your experiences and how you tackle this “trickly” aspect of running.

 

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See Scott Run

Fitness, Fitness related, Marathons - Anupriya kapur - October 7, 2015

When I was growing up, I didn’t quite understand sport. Don’t get me wrong. I played. From kho kho to badminton, I pretty much tried my hand at everything but never stuck to one. Maybe that’s why, today I don’t make a great spectator. I still don’t understand the compelling allure of watching organised sport. I respect it. But fail to associate with the frenetic passion that goes along with it.

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My signed copy of Eat & Run. To “Mom on the Run” 🙂

What I love is watching a sportsman go at it. I often go into youtube black holes of watching athletes training. They could be soccer, tennis, basketball players, athletes or even intense gym workouts. I believe it is in the training and not the match itself that you get to see the athletes’ love for their chosen sport. When there are no spotlights, no pressure, no ticking clock. Just the player and the field. For them, nothing else exists. They are in a meditative trance that the most evolved spiritual gurus will envy.

So in love with the moment and what they are doing in it that you can almost experience how fulfilling it is. And that is a beautiful thing to watch. You want to get close to that mindset. Drawn to it despite your best self. Understand what makes it tick. Recently, I was lucky enough to move on from youtube and interact with an athlete of this caliber. And that too an ultra runner. The most meditative of all sports. I can’t even imagine the blank mind you need to be able to run distances more than 200 kilometers!

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with Ultrons

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And It was everything and so much more than I expected. Scott Jurek is one of the best ultra runners that there ever has been. I was a bit intimidated, overwhelmed and excited at the same time about seeing him live. But he was unassuming and came down to the level of a beginner and explained basics like what’s a stride, stride rate, correct posture and importance of strengthening. He spoke about the right level of nutrition, hydration, recovery and rest. He was mindful of the audience through out and at no point I felt small. I was surprised at how the energy of just one person can make the entire room upbeat and enthusiastic.

I also had the good fortune to interview Dan Lawson a couple of months back (btw, he finished second in Spartathlon 2015) and I was truly amazed how humble he is. Meeting Scott Jurek was just a reinforcement of my beliefs. The stuff ultra runners (or all great athletes) are made of!

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pic courtesy – Outdoor Journal

 

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