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My First Delhi Half Marathon

Posted: December 8th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Blah Blah | 6 Comments »

After running my first Half Marathon in Mumbai in 2007, I wanted to run Delhi half marathon. The thought of running with thousands of people on Rajpath in a misty morning with India Gate in background used to give me goose bumps. But even after registering for two consecutive years, I could not participate because it did not sync with Diwali holidays. However, this year the day was in perfect sync with my holidays and I registered for it dutifully.

As compare to my last 3 half marathons, I was best prepared this time. I was comfortably running/walking 10+ kms couple of times in a week in Pune and I was expecting to complete the run in 2 hours but things always do not go as you plan :-).

After reaching Delhi, the first task was to collect Bib and goodies bag from the expo. Participants were required to submit one identity proof and the organizers made sure they get to mint some money out of this. One photocopy of the identity proof was being charged Rs. 5 (that’s 5 times the market price). The goodies bag had some interesting things like pav bhaji masala, chhole masala and maggie :-).

The Saturday evening was very chilly in Delhi and I was  sceptical about the next day run but Sunday was not that cold as compare to last day. First 1 hour in the run was pretty smooth (except for the loo break after 1 km which was forced by consumption of 1.5 litre of water before run) and Endomondo was helping me to keep my pace constant. I completed 10 kms in first hour but once the sun started rising the temperature soared and by the time I reached Rajpath it was pretty hot. After completing 14 KMs it was pretty difficult to run because of cramp but I continued jogging/walking with slower pace. As I finished my 18th Km (I think), the Delhi dream run was started and last 3 kms were the same for both runs. The enthusiastic dream runners with different kinds of fancy dresses and banners, hoardings made these last 3 kms more painful. The half marathoners were literally wading through the sea of dream runners. When I reached finish line, it was 2:43:07 since the starting gun was fired.

I have participated in 3 Half Marathons in Mumbai and had high expectations for Delhi Half Marathon but it was no match for Mumbai experience. The people’s participation is quite high in Mumbai where people will line up beside the road and cheer you up, give you biscuits, juices and fruits. Audience were completely missing in Delhi.

There were other things which were not well organized in Delhi. Baggage counter was the biggest problem. The participants had to wait for more than 1 hour to get their bags. The finishers medal distribution was not properly managed as well. Some runners even staged a small protest about this. Later, organizers promised to send the finishers medal by post. The route planning could have been better. The dream run route should have been different than half marathon route, like it happens in Mumbai.

I was surprised that how Procam which puts a great show in Mumbai Marathon can manage to have this mediocre organized Delhi run.

I enjoyed my Delhi Half Marathon run but the experience could have been more enjoyable if the things were more managed. But still I look forward to run in Delhi next year and I hope it would be another memorable experience minus the mis-management.


6 Comments on “My First Delhi Half Marathon”

  1. 1 Bhavesh said at 12:13 am on December 9th, 2010:

    Short, Informative and good :)
    Always like to read updates from you. Good to see that you are prepared well for mumbai marathon. Woh Kale, Patle runners ki watt laga dena…

    Keep it up dude.

  2. 2 Kanu said at 3:14 am on December 9th, 2010:

    Congratulations mate! Well done.

    I think the management in Delhi vs Mumbai has lot to do with the culture of these cities. I have not known Mumbai and also Delhi till I was hundreds of miles away from both and then meet people who belonged to them. There is a vast difference.

    Spirits of Mumbaikar and of Delhiwala roam in two different directions is what I have noticed. Rs 5 for photocopy is a typical example.

    Anyways, I am happy you managed to do it finally. The medals will be thrown in cupboards after a while but the experience will last forever.

    All the best.

  3. 3 Sudhir Upadhyay said at 11:02 am on December 9th, 2010:

    Kanu, sometime I feel the Dil part is missing in Dilli :-) You are right about medals, experience will be cherished.
    Now, I’m looking forward to my favorite Mumbai Half Marathon next month.

  4. 4 Sudhir Upadhyay said at 11:03 am on December 9th, 2010:

    @Bhavesh: The sister’s wedding last month has derailed all the preparations for Mumbai run, the preparation will resume this week, Let’s see how I fare against kale patle dhaavak :-)

  5. 5 Amir Kumar Mahakud said at 12:01 pm on December 9th, 2010:

    It’s interesting reading your blog , I would say , more informative it is ..(as usual) :-)

    We would love to see you running Mumbai marathon , and I’m curious to see those time figures .. 2: Xx: xx you’re going to set. ;-)

  6. 6 sonal Dubey said at 5:29 pm on December 9th, 2010:

    I have participated in 3 Half Marathons in Mumbai and had high expectations for Delhi Half Marathon but it was no match for Mumbai experience. The people’s participation is quite high in Mumbai where people will line up beside the road and cheer you up, give you biscuits, juices and fruits. Audience were completely missing in Delhi…..Mumbai rocks :)

    Great spirit and good article..tussi great ho


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