Ready to run

Ready to run

Ready to run

Have you ever looked out of  your window early in the morning and noticed your neighbours getting ready for a run? Perhaps, they are they making an effort to stay fit to participate in a marathon.

In recent times, more and more Bengalureans are participating in marathons. But how many are really passionate about it and do it the right way? And how many just want to be part of the fad? 

Adrika Swaminathan, a content writer and a regular participant in the runs in the City is passionate about marathons. She says, “If I begin practising, it’s because I want to partake in a run. It’s pointless to run otherwise — there’s no motivation or target to beat.”

Adrika has taken part in three 10k runs till now and is looking forward to another one soon. Her aim is to be a part of the run so that she can also visit places it’s held at. “I was supposed to go for a 10k run in Hampi last week, but I had to cancel it last minute. But I had planned it in such a way that the date matched a long weekend and I’d get to visit the local sites once I was done with my run. This way, I can enjoy the best of both worlds,” she adds.

While many love being part of the runs and marathons, there’s a certain amount of training that one needs to do before the main event. Very often, one does not realise that it’s not easy to run a certain distance without practice — your body won’t be used to it. So Mohith Varkey, a digital marketing strategist and an enthusiast runner, plans it all out.
He explains, “Depending on the distance that I would be running, I follow a schedule. I make sure that I run three days a week, give two days for walking or any low cardiovascular workout and one day of compulsory rest. I don’t eat anything before the run — maybe half a banana or a bit of cereal with very little water. With my diet, I’d increase my intake of boiled eggs, boiled chicken and bananas. The number of kilometers I run increase as the week passes by and do a final run to try and beat my time.” But he says that once he is done with the run, he makes sure that he gives his body the time to rest and recover.

Yes, as Mohith said, it’s very important that one gives the body enough time to rest and recover — something that many miss out on.

Arvind Bharathi, Manager of ‘Runners For Life’, suggests, “Training period of any runner ranges from six weeks to 16 weeks. When you train your body to be a particular way for so long and you finally take it out on the final day of the event, it needs to rest after. But that doesn’t mean that you sit on your couch all day and do nothing. Get back on your feet and do minimum workouts, but never strain yourself.”

Taking about the different types of training, he says that one must not try anything new on the day of the marathon or the run, including new shoes!

“It’s very important that you train in the equipment that you will be taking with you for the run so that you body is used to it. If you’re someone who cannot run on an empty stomach when you set out for practice, have a light snack — either a banana or toast with peanut butter spread — and set out to the road. This way, you’re not exposed to a new element on the final day.”

Whether it is to stay fashionable or to run for a cause, many Bengalureans are setting out to the streets to get their legs working.

Cubbon Park is one such popular place were many like to practice. Reeth Abraham, a professional athlete, is also one of the many who run here every day. She says, “I see new faces on a daily basis and it’s interesting to see all age-groups indulge in this sport.

But one must remember the rush you get from it is addicted. But don’t push yourself so much that you get injured in the process. Make sure you take enough rest, stretch as much as you can, have the right intake of food and train to your best.” Many of the marathons and runs that are organised are to raise funds for some cause. But very often, one forgets that and just focus on uploading pictures on the social media about their participation. Arvind says, “It’s very disappointing that many turn up and behave in such an unpleasant manner. While these posts bring awareness to the cause, it feels like it ends there. So one must always remember what they are running for. It is not about making a fashion statement.”

Payal, a professional adds, “I think marathons are a fashion statement for the young. Most of them talk about saving the environment and promote healthy living. However, people don’t realise that some runs are more of an awareness campaign. Such events are generally for the sake of publicity for a company or the sponsors. People satisfy themselves by clicking pictures or sharing posts; feeling happy that they have ‘saved the environment’.”

“Marathons actually lead to more litter and leave behind items like plastic spoons, plates and bottles rather than being eco-friendly,” she rues.