RACE: Delhi Half Marathon

“Dude, I think you’re going to surprise yourself in Delhi”

That’s what my friend and coach Krish had told me after looking at one of my runs. He has been instrumental in training and guiding me for the races that I have participated in so far. Although my training had not been what I wanted it to be in the last two weeks before the race, I had worked really hard throughout 2019. I had started feeling different. Some runs that would have left me exhausted a year ago, had turned to routine. I felt less fatigue. I knew that all the work that we had put in last year was finally bearing fruit. Life/training is also a marathon and not a sprint. You have to be patient otherwise you will end up doing something really silly or losing motivation.

The course in Delhi is generally flat and the weather is great during that period so a lot of runners target to do their best in this race. My previous best was the Mumbai Half Marathon 2020 where I had run a 2:09:42 which was around 10mins faster than my previous timing. I didn’t have any specific target in my head but I definitely wanted to beat this time. I was pretty nervous a day before and was speaking to Krish about how to approach the race and he had told me that I should just keep faith in all the work I had put in and start smart and then pick up in the latter part of the race.

The night before and the morning of the race is really crucial. If your stomach is clean and you feel nice and empty it gives you that extra motivation in the race. Unfortunately for me this time I was constipated. It usually always happens to me when I travel. I was hoping that wouldn’t be the case but I had to live with it and pray that I wouldn’t get the urge during the run. I have been consistently running without music but I always carry earphones because I am not used to running without listening to something for such a long distance. I had planned this. I would listen to a podcast for the first 10kms and then start my running playlist which would give me the extra push.

The race started off well. Weather was fantastic, I was feeling good in spite of feeling a little bloated and I was maintaining a good pace. I was listening to a podcast episode which finished right at the 10km mark and I was super happy with how organized my run was so far. I started playing music from my run playlist and after half a song my earphones stopped working. At that moment I knew that I couldn’t panic although I was freaking out inside. I tried to stay positive and told myself that this was a great opportunity for me to concentrate on my breathing and hydration.

I frankly still can’t believe how well I ran the second half of the race. It made me proud. I hope that I can put in the work this year as well and perform even better next year.

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