Yes, it happened… finally… finished a Marathon within 4 hours… 3:56:22 to be exact…
I was back again to Mumbai for finishing what I started last Feb. Immediately after the Mumbai Marathon of 2017, I realised I need to work on lots of things before I could break into sub-4; building strength for example. I joined a gym on Feb 1, 2017, and it changed my runs altogether. I surprised myself my stamina and endurance. So, I had high hopes for TMM (Tata Mumbai Marathon).
Mumbai is the Mecca of running. Every Marathoner in India wants to come to Mumbai during the third weekend of January and be part of this running festival. It’s not like Mumbai roads are the easiest to run to. It is not easy here; heat and humidity in the second half and the notorious Peddar road (known for its elevation)… it’s not easy. It is not easy to crack one’s personal best here.
But, I was prepared. And toughened up… running few rough Marathons last year was a confidence booster… a sub-4:35 finish in Hyderabad, 4:10 finish in Singapore… all those trained me to keep going through adversity!
For a sub-4 finish, one needs to run at sub-5:40 pace. My plan was to keep the 5:30-5:35 pace as long as possible. The Peddar road at 35th km, things are not going to be easy during the last 10k with the sun directly on your face. The plan worked out. I could maintain the 5:35 average until the 33rd km. From there the pave dropped a little, but, only slightly. At the Peddar road split, I was running at 6:09. The last 3 kilometres were the slowest; around 5:50-55. But, I had saved enough seconds for those splits… In all, the last 13 kms came at a pace of 5:48. Super satisfying.
But, that was not the highlight of the day. It was indeed the way I ran. I never stopped on the way! Usually, there will be a stop or two post-33 km for me. This time, it never happened; even @ the Peddar road or on the last kilometre when I was dead tired and a sub-4 was assured. I just wanted to do my best.
I came back from Mumbai all satisfied. Something got checked from my 2018 bucket list in January itself. Great start to the year!
2018 is not going be easy. I have some tough targets in mind… well, I enjoy challenging myself. New places to travel… new peaks to conquer… more records to break! Yes, I am ready!!!!