Thursday, October 14, 2010

Spirit of Wipro 2010

We had a fab race – Shreya came in second in the women’s category and I came in first in the 10k race in the Spirit of Wipro Run last weekend. The race was flagged off by Premji and we received our medals from Anurag Behar and Suresh Vaswani – ROI was very high for a 10K run!!!

We would have missed this year’s edition of Wipro’s Run if it were not for the Ayodhya verdict, which postponed the run by a week.
I had a good idea of the course, which was unchanged from last year, gradual gradient in the first 2km, then nearly flat to the U-turn point and a fast last couple of kms. I had used the last stretch well last year, to finish second piping competition by 1sec. Read the report of last year here.

But, the build up to the run was not the most ideal – late night meetings, low morale at work did not help energy levels. In fact, I had to work well past midnight on Friday and could barely sleep for a couple of hours when I rolled in bed. Pre-race butterflies – maybe, maybe not.
Later during the week, I read Danny Dreyer’s book where he talks about the importance of visualization. I those sleepless hours, I’d run the entire course in my head and had pushed myself to finish on the top.

It was Shreya’s first race after she had started to train for the half marathon and she now runs those 10ks comfortably. It would be good to see how she fared in a race.

Come race day, I did not need waking up from the 4hrs of light sleep. We reached the venue, registered, picked up our free tee-shirts, and met regular RFLers at the start line. The run was flagged off by none other than Azim Premji and the Jt. CEOs were in attendance.

Race Analysis:
Here’s how it compared to the last year’s race.

The field was much less competitive this year, which accounts for the slack in the last few kms. Last year round, I had to push myself hard (under 4mins for the last km) to cling the second place. This year, I didn’t have any contest – the second runner finished a good 1.5mins behind.

I took lead right at the 2k mark and held steady around 4:30min/km pace for most of the run. After the U-turn, I noted that the next runner was a good minute or so behind. I passed Naina Lal in second and Shreya trailing a few secs behind her in third place. She was looking good.

I went into cruise mode on the downhill and managed to put a lot of distance between me and the next runner. It also helped that I had a police escort (a un-uniformed policeman on a bike) to keep the walkers out of my way. With no competition around, I didn’t need to push the last few kms and ended up somewhat similar timing as last year, the official timing put me at 44:30mins for the 10k, as against 44:11mins last year!
I pushed aside the melee of reporters (yes, really ;) ) at the finish and got back on the road so I could accompany Shreya in her last km or so. I saw her in second place with 1-1.5k to go and she had about 30sec lead over Naina in third. She held pace and finished in 60:11mins, ahead of Naina by about 20secs or so. She did extremely well for someone who started distance running not so long ago.

Roberto Narain’s Drum-jam kept the crowd engaged till the start of the medal distribution. Shreya and I were, of course, the star couple on the podium, yaay!!
In the photo (from right): Suresh Vaswani, Anurag Behar and the star couple!
Some media here.

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Get Wild in Wilderness Weekend

The Bangalore Hash was in Masanagudi, the Elephant territory for the Independence Day weekend… We were hosted by Mahindra resorts, a beautiful forest property in the foot of magnificent Nilgiri hills.

Day 1 - Run No. 534 – Jumbo screw-up run
Three Hash Booses full of Hashers were smuggled across the Karnataka border to get “Wild in the Wilderness”. The hares had plans to get us high and the evening run took us high up nearby hills for some spectacular views. The herds did chase the hashers on many occasions, but they were herds of cattle and not Pachyderms and the hashers survived the Jumbo screw-up.
Circle Points:
· Hares – Beep Beep, Flame thrower, Sky High & Pervert Producer iced for laying the wild trail in the Masanagudi wilderness, even as Half moon gave a demonstration of the jumbo sized latex umbrella covers
· Rigor Mortis was charged for stiffening up early in the morning and getting everyone late
· Hybrid was charged for being competitive at the Urban Stampede; he complained that “Unintended Acceleration” was the cause. However, the charge was not ‘recalled’. Vinnie the Pooh also joined Hybrid on the ice for making the legal charge
· Our dear Sponsors - Flame thrower, Sky High & Hybrid were iced for their generosity
· Loan Shark & Roopa were iced for not being able to hide their curiosity regarding Beep Beep’s perfectly shaped blobs. Beep Beep cooled himself on the ice as he explained these damsels, how he used certain ‘un-used assets’ for marking the trail
· Virgins – Roopasree, Anshu, Anup , Suresh, Roopa were iced for having turned up at the Hash
· Pox Docs – Roshan, Dinesh, Suresh & Manjunath were given the Rx-only Hash medicine – the amber syrup
· Beep Beep welcomed the Bangalore hashers on behalf of the first family of Chennai. CM Karunanidhi look-a-like ‘No H2O no Hair’, Stalin look-alike ‘wrong circle’, Azhagiri look-a-like He-Ma and Kanimozhi look-alike Kate were iced as Beep Beep walked the hashers through the history of the polygamous CM and his kin
Live Junglee beats over barbeque got us out of our cottages to dancing, beers, party and dinner in the eerie settings…

Day 2 - Run No. 535 – Jumbo Jumbo Jumbo Ass run
On this Independence day, the hashers were packed into Booses and driven up Kalhatti in search of the hares for the recovery run. Some ran, others ambled, while few others rolled down the Nilgiri hills, till they chanced upon loud trumpets and 3 elephants!!! On seeing the BH3 hashers, the Jumbos did a quick hair-pin turn and scurried into the bushes!!

Circle Points:

· Hares – Half moon, Vinnie the Pooh & Crushed Nuts were iced for surviving the Elephants and the Elephant dung while laying the wild trail
· Amit joined them for complimenting the run
· Dinesh, Roopa and yet another Roopa were invited on the ice for ‘not coming’
· There were some British who stayed back in India after Independence and 63 years on, He-Ma, Wrong circle, Vaseline, Friction Nipples were iced for not ‘Quitting India’
· Michael Muthuraj Richard was given a well deserved down down, for hosting us at Casa Deep Woods. He was christened “Squirrel Heart” by all and sundry. Raju & Suresh joined him for more down downs
· Half moon and Jingle balls were iced for using their bikes to look for the tigers in the jungle
· Flame Thrower,Sky High, Pervert Producer, Jingle balls, Vaseline & Push Mush were iced for mis-managing the Wild weekend
· Ex-GMs led the circle to sing the national anthem in chorus to celebrate the 63rd Independence day!

On On