Take a bow

The queen of Arabian Sea, Kochi hosted the first ever International Half Marathon yesterday, Sunday December 29, 2013. Its been a great day, for young and old, for runners and aspiring runners…and even for the spectators who were witnessing Kochi’s first ever International Half Marathon.

I signed up for Kochi fun run, not to race (obviously), but just to be be in the middle of it all. To be part of all the action, to see the joy, the sweat, the energy, tears of happiness if any…. just to see it all. For I thought, it would inspire me to go the distance, to feel it all in me, some day soon.. Soles of Cochin (Cochin Runners) were the players in my playground..

Boy, how little did I know! If I could transfer all the energy and action into movements, I would be flying thru a full marathon with all smiles…

Soles of Cochin, you guys and girls rock!

The vibrant green tee’s that they wore were a perfect match to their personalities. Handshakes, hugs and huddle, it started with it all… I was amazed by their enthusiasm and energy, just as much as their goofiness and friendly ways. Veterans and first timers, all excited to the max, no nervousness, no fear.. only anticipation and excitement…and off they went as the show started. As we started out for the fun run, I was desperately hoping to be back at the stadium before the marathoners came back!

Back at the stadium, it didn’t take long for us to spot the front runners of Soles. Congratulations and sweaty hugs.. It was an amazing feeling to stand along with the Soles family, cheering on every entrant to the stadium. You spot a green tee, the cheers go up.. And as you find the first timers running in, don’t know where the goosebumps came from.. Possibly its for the inner hope of becoming a first time marathon runner sometime in the near future… Well, that’s exactly what I wanted to get out of this visit..

As the results and announcements came in, Soles went wild.. Victory laps, celebrations.. But hey, the real celebration was yet to start. Someone had the nerve to invite all these wild folks into their home for breakfast! 🙂 We tagged along uninvited, but we were made to feel like family by this lovely couple and the rest of the Soles team! Breakfast complete with “Soles of Cochin” cake, a toast and plans for evening family get together.. Conversations led to identification of celebrities from among the group, and a strange way to get your fear out by conquering fear itself!

I may not have run a half marathon at Kochi yesterday, but the feeling was one of achievement. Being part of all this gives me a motivation, gives me hope that it is achievable, if I put my mind and body to it.

Does it really matter that much? To be a marathon runner?

I guess it is more about achieving something that you think is beyond you. And of course, it comes with a benefit of being healthy. So why not?

The experience of being at Kochi, and more importantly coming in as Tracs Trivandrum team, and yet being part of Soles of Cochin team, made it worth every second.

The goal of a run is now changed into a dream, and more importantly to an achievable dream. The discipline in the practice, the camaraderie, team work, motivation, support and most importantly pushing fellow team members to achieve a goal, while having a whole lot of fun, is what makes Soles so special.

As a virtual member of the group I have been witnessing it all, but being there physically with them changes everything for the better. I hope Trivandrum Runners Club (Tracs) turn into a such a group that act in as support system for one and all..

Thanks to everyone at the Soles of Cochin team! You all are an inspiration.. Take a bow, folks!

I heard multiple times someone or other say, “Its not hard, its all in your mind”. As I returned back to my real life at Trivandrum and as I glanced thru my email, I couldn’t help notice the email from TED, announcing the latest TED Talk by Diana Nyad, aptly titled “Never ever give up”.

Hmm… Mind games? Just what I wanted to hear? You decide. Spend 15 minutes to see what Diana has to say. Its worth it.

This experience with Soles and Kochi Marathon, keeps the thought of running and the possibilities of running a marathon alive. And as Diana Nyad sings “Imagine” and counts her strokes, I am gonna sing to myself Jason Mraz’s “Living in the moment”. For every time I sing along the song with Jason, target to run 0.5km or more…

As for the brothers and sisters of Soles & Tracs, counting on you to make the dream come true… Borrowing Jason Mraz’s lyrics…

“And if I fall asleep
I know you’ll be the one who’ll always remind me
To live in the moment
To live my life
Easy and breezy
With peace in my mind
With peace in my heart
Got peace in my soul
Wherever I’m going, I’m already home……”
– Living in the moment, Jason Mraz

Someday soon, we will celebrate..

Cake is on me, I promise!

Until then…. Living in the moment and attempting to run…..

Thanks everyone and here’s wishing you all a happy healthy New Year!

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