Picture this – the cat is running after the mouse; the strapped-for-time is running to avoid being late; the love-struck is running after the crush; the over-ambitious is running after fame and money and so on. The “runs” never stop. Do they?
Keeping aside the metaphors and the philosophy, I want to divert your attention to running as a sport, as a form of exercise, as a panacea for your daily anxieties. I remember as a kid I was nothing short of a disaster at running – always finishing second-last, struggling to catch my breath and praying every time that the PT teacher be on leave. When I took it up again as an adult, I realised running is not as much about finishing first as it is about finishing. A few successful marathon finishes taught me that tenacity is more important than pace and grit is more needed than skill.
Don’t be mistaken, a marathon is where your pain makes you smile and your apprehension make you over-perform. People tell me that they don’t want to run marathons as it is too “commercialised”. Having accepted that I would say that in spite of the commercialisation it’s a platform for you to discover yourself in a new light.
You can always find an excuse to never participate in a marathon. But the pertinent reasons behind choosing to run in a marathon outweigh the excuses any day. I am eliciting some of them for you.
- Marathon running is an experience of a lifetime. The spectre it presents to you is unique in its own way. Thousands of people moving towards a common goal fosters humanity in unforeseen ways.
- Running is about defeating your own limitations. Marathons will teach you how to compete with yourself and win over your weaknesses with persistence.
- The drill of taking time out from your schedule to practise for marathon running brings in a lot of discipline in you which benefits other aspects of your life. Needless to say, without discipline nothing can ever be achieved.
- Once in a while you got to challenge yourself. You really don’t know what you are capable of unless you have put yourself in untested waters.
- You can really make a friend or two while running a marathon. Believe it or not, mutual encouragement and compliments during marathons turn strangers into friends.
- Run for those fancy medals and the certificates you can flaunt later. Yeah, it’s a big deal!
- This is the closest you can feel to being invincible. No kidding here.
- Finish a marathon to experience the runner’s high. This high is higher than anything you can possibly imagine.
- Feel in full control of your mind and body. What a feeling that is!
- Bring back that lost enthusiasm in life. We all tend to get bored with our daily routines and running a marathon can infuse that zest you have been missing for some time.
Let me warn you about the muscle pain and soreness that’s gonna hit you once you finish. This is actually pretty normal in the running fraternity and the gains offset the pains by a huge margin. You will not regret. Trust me!
So my beauties, pick up those sports shoes today and head out.
Run – to stay fit, to de-stress, to have fun, to nurture self- love and live a better life.