My First Ultra Marathon

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Weekends, most wondrous thing for all working professionals,  as they get time to sleep their ass off. But whats that, its only 5 am in the morning,  and streets are full of people in shorts and running shoes. Welcome to Pune and welcome to the runners world.

Pune is the different dimension of this world, where every 3 people out of 5 love running or does run regularly,  and thanks to the amazing athletes this city has produced from marathon champions,  ironmans, amazing cyclists and the list are endless.  Moreover the IT culture, technological advancement and availability of running gears everything help this city to grow its running culture.  Every other weekend,  there are running events keep happening. Maybe it the new fad among people over here, but this has made them become serious about their lifestyle.

And then there are some people who are training seriously to achieve their goal and get that podium position. Following daily training plans, good diet, proper nutrition. I too somehow got attracted towards all of these and started running seriously 2 months back. Doing 5km initially was tough,  but daily practice helped to improve me. Did few 10kms and manage to complete within 1hour.

I don't know, but always I keep on challenging myself. I had never done 21km or 42km, but this Christmas I planned to participate in Ultra Marathon. Doing 50km or 100km is a no joke, need lots of practice, so planned to opt for 35km instead in Wester Ghat Ultra by Run Buddies. So, it was 5 am in the morning, reached the beautiful venue in time. And slowly all participants arrived, many were doing 100km and 100miles too.

We started 6 am sharp, it was still dark and cold but was an amazing experience.  Crossing the trail route, hill section, villages we reached the U-turn point which was 12.5km from the start point. The route was astonishing and beautiful,  moreover, the organizers had done an excellent job in managing and providing full support after every 2km. Banana,  Oranges, peanuts,  glucose,  water, first aid everything was available. By the time we reached it was light, but it was still chilling. We all turned back, to complete the loop of 25km. I had till now, only done 10km, but somehow was managed to pull till 18km. But after that lack of practice resulted in slowing down my pace. The last 10km, I was not able to run at all. had to take frequent rests and stops. But pull me hard, to achieve my goal.
And at the end of 4hrs 25min, I was at the finish line, with finishers medals and the smile of satisfaction. My legs were in pain, but all goes when u get that sweet medal. Feels like every pain were worth it.

There was breakfast arranged for all participants. Stretching and cool down exercise what followed after that. I know, I really sucked with that bad timings but, that was great for me. I was happy that I was able to achieve it, which first seems impossible after I crossed 25km, but glad, I was able to make it.  What I loved about this event, was the way it was organized, in a marvelous way. There were participants who were targeting towards 100km and 100miles, every point was taken care of while executing this event. Even though it was my first attempt to do any ultra running, but one thing I learned that sincere practice, training, and proper nutrition can help you achieve anything.

"The miracle isn't that I finished. The miracle is that I had the courage to start."

Few pictures of the event.



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