The best part about running as a recreational sport is that it is inclusive. That probably explains its popularity the world over. Anybody can run, it’s that simple. And the more runners I meet, I realise how therapeutic it is and how it forces you to take note of yourself. For me, it was as if I connected with myself for the first time when I started running. Even pregnancy had failed to do that for me. However, nowadays it also comes with a lot of noise and commotion. There is pressure of what races are you signing up for, your finish time, how much you are running in a week etc. It feels good initially as a new runner but slowly the pressure builds up. Of course, it’s great if you want to improve continuously and important to strength train to remain injury free but it’s not ok to constantly compare yourself with others. Continue Reading
This article was first published on The Hindu on June 12th, 2017.
I started recreational running when I lived in the Philippines. I explored the sport there for two years before moving back to India. I was still fairly new at it and running here wasn’t very big, so it was a weekly activity and a bunch of runners would get together, decide a route and just run.
But slowly, the scene started evolving. As did I, as a runner. From the running events that excited me in the Philippines, to the ones that made me dash out to register when I had just moved to India, to the ones that get me going now, are all very different. It really depends on the stage of life you are in, how long you have been running, and your personal goals, among other things. However, with a run almost every fortnight, especially in our bigger cities, choosing the one which is right for you can still be a tough decision. If you are new to running or new to participating in organised events, here are some tips to help you pick the best ones to start. Continue Reading
One of the biggest revelations during my recovery period from injury last year was that I had become obsessed with running. It was bordering an unhealthy obsession. The very thing that had given me my self worth was now controlling it. I started feeling worthless when I didn’t or couldn’t run. And that wasn’t right as “I’m a runner” didn’t define me wholly. That’s why, when I joined CrossFit to strength train, I already knew where to draw the line. To keep it 3 times a week, an hour each was my goal and I have stuck to it happily. It’s a method I have chosen now to stay fit and running will forever be for the soul.
When I look back and look around, I realise that there is a fine line between passion and an unhealthy obsession. And when I say an unhealthy obsession, it’s nothing to do with the distances one wants to train for. I have met enough and more passionate runners training for 160km and yet take life as it comes. While I have written a lot of fun articles on running and some on how running transforms you as a person (read here), this one might come across as a little harsh.
Here are some signs I really think one must watch out for and it’s not limited to running, biking or CrossFit –
1) Getting irritated if you miss a run or workout because one of the family member is sick. It might seem extreme but I have known someone who was going crazy because she missed her gym for 5 days as her child was sick.
2) When rather than being at peace, you feel life has come to a halt when, for some reason, you are unable to run longer duration.
3) You push yourself to train despite being constantly fatigued or severely injured. “No pain, no gain” isn’t always true. I did that because that’s the only thing I knew and then paid a price for it. Wearing knee pads and continuing to run rather than taking a break to fix that knee, can be really harmful in the long run.
4) When it feels more like a chore. Yes there are some bad runs/workouts and good runs/workouts but most of the time a workout or run should leave you feeling good. That’s a definitive one, if you don’t feel good after a run, give it a break.
5) Trying to squeeze in mileage by compromising on sleep. Sleeping 6-7 hours is really important. Training/workouts need to be balanced and missing one day here and there isn’t going to kill you.
6) When you are tempted to deactivate or actually deactivate social media channels as you feel miserable about missing out.
These are just somethings which came to my mind and I know list is long. But let’s not forget that
Sometimes you’re ahead, sometimes you’re behind
The race is long and in the end, it’s only with yourself
– Baz Lurmann – Everybody’s free (to wear sunscreen)
This article has ben written by me and first published on The Hindu on 15th May 2017.
What to avoid, how to pace yourself and when to simply push on
When you first start running it’s quite like falling in love. With yourself. You discover a little more about yourself on each run: “I can’t believe I ran five kilometres without a single break!”, “I never thought I could be so strong!” You might discover that you enjoy running on your own, either just being with yourself or the state of zero that you go into when the rhythm of the run takes over. There are many reasons to get addicted to running. And enough studies have proven that running can be one of the most addictive sports. Continue Reading
Over the years, many women have asked me how to navigate the conundrum between likeability and success. This made me dig deeper to try and understand what the true problem is and why does it appear to be acute in case of women Vs men.
As men achieve success in their careers, they seem to become very naturally more likeable and popular but in case of women, it’s a mixed bag and in most cases they become less likable and in many cases are labeled as a “bit****”. Continue Reading
For me Decathlon, Sohna Road is a hop, skip and a jump away. I go there often to shop, but it has been limited to whatever my son needs. So, I have always known how well stocked they are for practically every outdoor or indoor sport and even for equipment for less popular sports such as combat sports, roller sports, horse riding, nature sports, target sports, water sports etc. However, it is one thing to see all the products and wonder what one does with them and the other to actually listen to the people who has been avidly using them.
Running changes you forever. Some changes are obviously bigger and more apparent. But most times we don’t even realise the subtle changes that transform us slowly and for life. One fine morning you wake up and might realise that you are ok going out without putting on make-up or seem to have genuinely started empathising with the struggles of other people or have become much calmer and less fretful or any other big change and wonder “Hey, when did that happen…”. But it isn’t an overnight epiphany that has changed you. If you are a runner, it is the sport that might have done this to you. As it did to me. And for that, I am grateful that running happened to me. Here are a few outcomes that running has pretty much on the high and the mighty and the plebeians alike: Continue Reading
In my article, ‘5 stages of grief’ (read here) I had discussed the emotional turmoil we go through when we are injured. But what if you are out of the running scene for really long? I have been out practically for the last six months except a few decent 10kms and 5kms.
I have come to believe that an injured runner is like a caged animal. No matter how you might treat it, it will never be truly happy until it is set free.
However, this time around I have not struggled to reach the “acceptance” stage. Of course, it’s everything to do with how I choose to deal with it. I have finally realised that running is life long. It’s a way of life rather than short term obsessive goals.
So here are some of those things that help me and might just be of some use to you:
1) Find another recreational fitness activity – And there are plenty only if we runners are ready to give it a fair chance. It’s ok to not be out there for everything you choose to do. For me it’s stationary cycling which I find extremely boring but it’s safe and at least it tires me out.
2) Shut off yourself from running whatsapp groups if it’s making you feel miserable. Even though I’m still a part of it, I rarely ever check it. Continue Reading
In my last playlist I had shared some very thought provoking songs (check out the list here). And now I’m back with some popular and some different songs.
- I think whatever comes out of his mouth becomes a hit. Even more fun than this song is the various choreography people have done all over the world on this song.
Since all our runs happen when most people are sleeping, it is only fair to take to social media to make sure no one misses it. Here are some of my favourite types of social media running pics that almost every runner is or has been guilty of posting. Tell me some of yours. Or better yet. Reply (on comment section) with a favourite of yourself and you might just win an adidas goodies/vouchers in return. Thanks to everyone who let me use their pictures. Also, there’s a reason I picked up these pics, these are also handles of runners one must follow.
I’m a biter – The medal biting picture. Also a great ad for your favourite brand of toothpaste. Just once I would like to see someone actually bite off a piece of that medal – now, that’s what I would call an Ironman.
A photo posted by Reeti Sahai (@reetz06) on
It’s my time now – Every runner’s enemy no. 1. Time. And every time you beat yours, you need to show that sucker a thing or two by putting out your victory for all to see. And of course, flaunt your shoes while at it. Continue Reading