Recent Popular Posts

October 12, 2007

Great running, bloos!

Four of my running buddies have been running crazy terrains and distances this whole year (Running rim to rim to rim on the Grand Canyon should make you sit up!). They are planning to finish it off with a 100 miler in Bandera, TX this November. This is the longest distance any of them has ever run. The distance by itself is crazy. And Bandera is certainly not a walk in the park - exposed to the elements, rocky, hilly. A challenging run. Sure they are doing it for the challenge, for the fun of running, for being for nature, for living in the now and so on. They are also trying to raise money for some developmental initiatives in India that Asha supports. I draw a lot of inspiration from all of them, to push your limits, to continuously challenge yourself. And none of them are trained athletes, they just picked it up along the way...

Santhosh was one of the first people I met when we moved to Austin. We started talking about having a marathon training program as a fundraiser for Asha and thought we should perhaps train too, else how can we get others to run. And did he look concerned about training for the marathon! Santhosh has this helpless, innocent look that he can turn on at will and he had the bamby-eyed expression all through the meeting. After the Austin marathon, he has been just hooked! Then followed another Austin marathon, Chicago, Rocky Raccoon 50k, Sunmart 50 miler, Big Horn 50 miler, Pikes Peak, Grand Canyon...phew! With his parents around, the 100 miler is sure going to be an interesting one!

After we decided to go ahead with the marathon program, we met Vinod at an AID meeting. He looked very excited about a marathon training program (he had trained with Asha Silicon Valley) in Austin and pretty much took over! A good thing, coz the rest of us had never run such distances before and didn't know what was involved. He spoke to Steve Sisson and got us under the Rogue umbrella. He was the grand old man with lot of running experience, telling us about the illiotibialband and whatnot! I keep hearing that he is the brain behind this year's running schedule, picking the crazy races mentioned above, upping the distances and elevations, pushing everyone to run with no sleep etc :) Not surprised he just took over ;)

Met Ganesh once the program started (he was one of the few people I didn't already know who had registered for the program, many being volunteers, so was curious to meet him). The one thing I remember clearly about our first chat was he said he regularly ran about 10 miles around Town Lake. That was a big deal! (Apparently he also showed up for his first run without his shoes on :)) Its been crazier since the the ultra bug bit him. Running 20 miles in a pair of jeans proves it no?

Gaurav decided to run just after he started volunteering for Asha. He started off saying a half marathon would be good enough and quickly became the A+ around! Wouldn't miss a workout, would do everything as should be done, ask questions of Steve till the latter threatened to saw his leg off! He has to date not been very convinced about upping the distance but does it nonetheless - the 50k quickly turned into a 50 miler and the 100 miler which was not even being considered sometime back is now happening!

All very quirky weird characters yet down-to-earth folk who also want their personal endurance challenges to mean something more. They have a fundraising target of $40,000 for the 400 miles they plan to cover together come November. Read more on their blog to support them...

No comments: