Run with the wind

#9/100

Many years ago, I was going through Will Smith’s interviews on YouTube on a lazy afternoon. I had watched his movie “The Pursuit of Happyness” and was mesmerized by his performance in the movie. I wanted to understand his personality and ideologies more and would end up watching a lot of his interviews. During one such browsing session, I stumbled upon his award show winning speech which left a huge impact on me.

“The keys to life are running and reading. When you’re running, there’s a little person that talks to you and says, “Oh I’m tired. My lung’s about to pop. I’m so hurt. There’s no way I can possibly continue.” You want to quit. If you learn how to defeat that person when you’re running. You will know how to not quit when things get hard in your life.

-Will Smith

During those days I was completely cut out from any form of physical activity. As a kid, I was never into sports and ended up being that overweight kid who avoided the sports class in school. I never had a dislike for sports or any exercise in particular, I was just not into multitasking back then. School only meant studying for me, I was never part of any extra-curricular activity (a thing that I totally condemn now).

My tryst with running started when my best friend enrolled us into a 5 km marathon about 4 years back. I had never run more than 100 mtrs in my life till that time but somehow had the confidence to complete this run. You can sense my total disregard to the concept of distance and time here. In my mind, 5 km didn’t seem that difficult a target to accomplish. My confidence was crushed when I barely huffed and puffed my way past the finish line in 55 mins on the race day. Although my timing was horrible, this run somehow managed to release a great deal of endorphins in my body and gave me a sense of accomplishment. But that was it, I made unsuccessful attempts to make running into a habit many times after the marathon. I even purchased running shoes and active wear to motivate myself only ending up being stored safely in my cupboard. I just didn’t have the will to wake up early and run during the weekends.

Two years back, I was reunited with this sport when I was rock solid on my resolve to lose weight. I started slow but was determined to be consistent this time. I barely could complete 2 kms in the beginning but didn’t lose hope. I slowly increased the distance of my runs with each passing week and was able to build up the confidence to enroll myself into a 10 km marathon within 3 months.

Today, my love for this sport has completely transformed me for the better. As Will Smith said, it helps us quieten that little voice in our head which says “No” to any hurdle/struggle/change. Running gave me confidence to begin any new task headstrong and just dive right into it. The longest distance I’ve covered in a single session in the last 2 years has been 26 kms. Before the start of each long run, my mind always presents me with many negative emotions and doubts about completing the run. However, I’ve managed to complete every single run target I’ve set for myself and crossed the finish line feeling like a super woman each time.

There are certain habits which you know would work wonders for you yet difficult to imbibe. In my case it was running. I just had to force myself the first month and then it benefited me ways which were hard to ignore. I ran 5 kms after 4 months today because of the lock down and had the most surreal start to my day.

Challenge : 100 days

This year, 2016, has almost come to an end. Well, not almost, there about 100 odd days left. I realized, like always, I haven’t really done much to make 2016 a memorable one.

Last week, I saw a link on Facebook to join the “100 days with Pinkathon” challenge. Pinkathon is an annual marathon held in India to empower women. They believe a healthy family, a healthy nation and a healthy world begins with empowered women. I haven’t participated in their marathon yet (#2017 goal) however was extremely excited about this challenge. The challenge requires you to run minimum 2 kms everyday for the next 100 days. The challenge began on September 23rd 2016 with the 100th day ending on 31st December 2016. So basically, you accomplish the challenge throughout 100 days and celebrate on 1st January 2017 (along with #newyear2017 celebrations of course!).

I also got an email to join the “100 happy days challenge“. Rules of this challenge are pretty simple. Every day, for next 100 days, I need to find the 1 best thing that made me happy and document it. Your happy moments can be documented on any social media platform or their website itself (if you wish to avoid publicity). Due to our daily routine and supposedly busy life, we forget to live and enjoy the present moment. This might be the best way to do just that.

Along with the above 2 challenges, I decided to create my own challenge “100 punctual days”. I am a chronic procrastinator and extremely tardy. I never reach anywhere on time (not proud of it at all). I curated this challenge for my benefit. I hope by the end of this challenge, I’ll be able to join the ranks of people who are extremely punctual. I believe anyone can accomplish anything they want if they value the time in their hands.

I have embarked on the journey to make last 100 days of 2016 memorable. I hope these challenges bring a positive change and help me in some manner to become “the best version” of myself.

CHALLENGE ACCEPTED : 23rd SEPTEMBER 2016

Ciao!