Friday, September 5, 2008
Run for India!
It's marathon season again! Around this time every year, thousands of folks in Austin hit the Town Lake trails to start their training for the February marathon.
This lovely trail around the lake is a 10-mile loop at the max. There are shorter loops of approx. 3.5, 4.5, 5 and 7 miles as well. As temperatures drop and the weather becomes pleasant again, Saturday mornings start to look something like this ...
* the alarm goes off at 6am and is greeted with disbelief that it's already morning
* it's pure torture to get ready, get a little food down and leave while still half asleep
* Town Lake is already buzzing with activity as we get there in the pre-dawn darkness
* we stretch by the lake as morning sunlight filters through the trees and lights up the waters
* a pleasant breeze stirs the leaves overhead and brushes your face and finally you fully wake up
* what a joy it is to be alive!
* once we start to run, conversations die down and a quiet rhythm falls into place
* the camaraderie of silent runners joined by a common zest for life is exhilarating!
Last season Raghav and I trained for 5 months and completed the Austin full marathon in Feb '08. We run with our volunteer group Association for India's Development (AID), and raise money through the run, for sustainable development projects in India. This is an annual event, and this will be our second season.
This year I plan to train for just the half-marathon. Years of running has taken its toll on my knees and I have some fluid leak in there and some cartilage damage, which makes running painful over longer distances. Those days are gone when it was pure joy and an addiction. Now I have to run slow and step carefully so that I don't aggravate my knees. If I could change one thing about my body, it would be my joints - I'd ask for stronger knees so that I can run again as I used to. But that's enough whining ...
We ran 3.5 miles today and it was great. I'm looking forward to this season - training for the half marathon is pretty relaxed and so it should be more fun than work.
Let's hope we raise some money for India, attract some new volunteers in the process and have a blast!
P.S. That was my design for the Run for India 2008 t-shirt ...