Sunday, October 12, 2008

Finally - 26.2 @ Chicago Marathon - Delivered!

Chicago marathon would be a real stretch of imagination for someone who would come out huffing from the gym after 2.62 miles. Its been a real self-flattering accomplishment to write on this blog that..

I have actually completed my first marathon at Bank of America Chicago Marathon on 12th Oct 2008 at 2:18PM.

So, just to help your imagination to see how long really it is..
26.2 miles == 42.16 kms.
To me, at one time, this distance looked like eternity. :)

And this eternity ended in 6 hrs & 1 minute. (full marathon)
Half marathon was complete in 2hrs and 17 minutes. I crossed the start line at 8:17AM and the finish at 2:18PM.

(Pictures @

Here is a mile-by-mile event recap.
- First 5 miles seemed like breeze and then I decided I could do the full marathon. I wasn't sure I would when i jumped into this race.
- But the 13th mile had me thinking if I should call it quits after the half marathon. But this feeling just passed away when I really reached the milestone.
- 15th mile was my first break and now I was starting to feel what marathon really is :)
- On my 16th mile, I was filling myself with plenty of carb to survive the rest of it.
- the next few miles, i managed with 2-3 breaks and running mostly.
- But then started the real fun (pun intended) after the 20th mile. I was really feeling the heat and managed it walking mostly.
- My feet had now started complaining big time now and regretted having joined me in this endeavor.
- 25th mile had the adrenalin rushing in me to last upto the finish line. That did not help the timings much though.

And then finally, there was this great feeling of accomplishment and joy and elation and whatever.

At the same time, plenty of misery - as someone commented - you walk great man and there are so many here like that :). I wish i could take my pictures walking right at the finish line and share with you all.

I compiled an FAQ of questions no one may actually ask me :) ...
Q1.# So, whats the inspiration?
Ans: Just self-fulfillment and my belly :)
And all of you who are reading my blog have inspired me in one way or another. Especially, of course, my family including my brother and bhabhi who coerced me into running the marathon.

Q2# Any slogan for your run?
Ans: This time around, i just jumped in when I realized during training that I actually did 13 miles. So, did not have much time to get something printerd on the gear.
But from next time onwards, I do have in mind to have the below slogan...

Run for your future ... Run for Open ... Run for Linux

Q3# Any message for those getting inspired by this blog?
Well, it would help you to know that when I started running in my apartment gym, 10 minutes of run sound great to me. And at that time, marathon to me sounded like professional running. And i was merely running to keep fit. So, thats where I am coming from to share this news with you all.

Just the belief that you can do it is good enough to be there.

Q4# Your training schedule?
For best results, you could follow It has tips for all - beginners to advanced runners. I did casual running prior to knowing about this website and the schedule was quite ad-hoc at times though I managed to keep my gym fairly regular during my entire last winter. It was quite a chilly experience going out at 6AM during peak chicago winter. (temperature as bad as -10c on few days - with snow all over the car. Its fun shoveling snow from car in chicago). gave me a 16 week schedule, which i had to cut short to about 7 weeks for lack of time. The last to last training week when i completed 13 miles, I got the confidence that it was worth jumping into the race. By this time, the registrations for chicago marathon had dried up (for record, there are 45000 official runners for the event and about 3000 like me), so i knew I have to jump in as a bandit runner but i think thats fine for start. However, registering in the event keeps track of you throughout the race and family has less to worry about you if you finish late. But, most importantly, it drives commitment. So, my suggestion is "commit to it" and it will help you prepare for it.

Q#5: And about your basic aim of running - keeping fit
Thats truly met. I was quite surprised at my last annual check up - which happened last month. For last 10 years, i had BP in the range of 125-130/95-85. This dropped to 110/80. My doctor was a little surprised to here when I told him I had this high for so long. This was the best thing to happen.

Weight - it dropped by just 6 lb. I am sure this reduction rate will double up once I get into routine. For sometime during the summer, I was not quite regular with my exercise routine.

Overall, health scorecard looks good, progress is great. And this is yet another reason for continuing to the next one :)


AG said...

Awesome . I am so proud of you. You are lucky to survive 26.2 miles after only training a half. I wouldn't suggest anyone else to do it. Those bleeding nipples are an excellent proof of your accomplishment though :)

Nishant said...

great!!!!!... u have put ur experience very well...

GulerOnTrack said...

Awesome Axay !!!

Gulerontrack definitely ROCKS ...

"Bravo" I was actually very nervous for you....... Half training and Full Marathon... only A Sujanian CAN do that.

I am so so proud of you.... next time we gonna run from Haripur to Kangra Hoz that :)

And last but not least take care of your nipples ( use vaseline or jelly all the time )

Prasad varma said...

aah! may be one more aahhh!! kudos!! finally lin'aux' never gives up is true :)

Prashy said...

Awesome feat! Wish you to add many more marathons to your journey to self-fulfillment...I am awe-inspired by this accomplishment of urs...just the belief that YOU CAN DO IT will be enough to carry u thru...sounds good!!...I believe I have the belief but my body has a different kinda belief system as of now...will let u know when that changes...bravo!!...PKT