Some Reflections after TCS 10K Bangalore 2014 : by Bharat Ramanath

| Monday, May 19, 2014 | |

My first race after joining the PaceMakers in February this year. This is the first time that I have undergone any sort of coaching for any sporting activity in my life! (A somewhat strange statement given that I have crossed 40 and used to be fairly active all through school and college and represented these in Basketball.)

It has been an interesting journey and one that I am learning to appreciate more each day.
What has coaching added?

a. Discipline:

While I have always been amenable to some consistent physical work, doing it regularly as an individual is always a challenge. Having a group to engage with and goad you on, makes a difference.

b. Structure:

I never varied my workouts and monitored my performance the way it is currently being done by coach. Am sure that combining this variety with the discipline above will make a significant difference in the long run (pun intended!). Now, if I can just bring myself to add that one swim a week on a consistent basis.

c. Expectation:

Ah! This is the interesting one.... So here goes.  Previously, I would have been a happy camper with a 10K chip timed PB. I improved this year from 48:20 (in 2013) to 46:57. An 83 second improvement. Not spectacular, but not insignificant either. But then, deep down somewhere, coach believed that 46:00 was a good target for me to aspire for. More importantly, he had me believing that this was a target that I should aim for . And we all know that the root cause of disappointment is not living up to your own expectations! So, yes I was feeling somewhat ambivalent yesterday and my emotions were definitely mixed.

In all post-mortems, we tend to rationalize and I can give enough 'reasons' (including humidity, a needlessly fast start where I made the mistake of reaching the 1 km marker in what is for me, an obscene time of 04:05....) for my not hitting the mark. Those aside, what makes it an acceptable performance for me is that I can vouch that I gave it everything I had and I have not felt as spent as I did yesterday at the finish line. Yes, not even after our Interval runs. So I think I will take 46:57 !

What also made the day for me was being able to cheer the elites right from next to the finish line as they came in. I waited for the foreign and Indian elite finishers before heading to Konark. Oh Yes! I can get used to this special treatment that was accorded to me for my fund-raising efforts! (Another post on this at a later date).

So, in sum, the pluses have outweighed the minuses by a bit!

Looking forward to my continued association with this wonderful group and some-day I will get around to meeting expectations too! Cheers!!

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