Tuesday, January 9, 2024


This weekend, I had the privilege of running and completing NEB 12 hour run at Bangalore's Sri Kanteerava stadium. The format of the run required you to run in the stadium track (400m+ loop) and cover as many loops as possible in the designated time (12 hours in my case). I managed to complete running a distance of 78 km. As the distance might suggest, it tested my limits. Overcoming the endurance challenge felt satisfying. Here are a couple of things I took away from this event-

1. The art of going slow:

Endurance running demands a level of restraint and moderation. It's tempting to allow pride to take control and push oneself too hard at the beginning. This strategy is often problematic as the long distance running, in essence, is about managing your energy. A primary hurdle during the initial phase for me was maintaining self-control and a slower pace, even while swallowing the ego of being overtaken by fellow runners. In the same vein, this principle of restraint and patience in long-distance running can be translated to our professional lives, where adopting a measured approach and pacing ourselves through challenges can lead to greater success and sustainability in the long run, rather than succumbing to the urge for instant gratification.

2. The path to accomplishment isn't linear

The phases I roughly went through during the run-

0 km: I'm focused on enduring the full 12 hours, confident that I can do it.
25 km: My run is going well, and I'm hopeful about covering the planned distance.
30 km: The challenge intensifies, and I start to question my choice to participate.
45 km: Having completed over 100 loops, monotony sets in, making me wonder why I even started.
60 km: The relentless sun is out, and with no shade on offer in the stadium- I have no choice but to slow down.
68 km: With the end in sight, I feel a renewed sense of motivation to push myself.
78 km: Never experienced a high like this

Do these stages resonate with your own experiences when confronting seemingly insurmountable obstacles?

Quoting legendary ultra-runner Dean Karnazes-
"You will cross that finish line as a different person. You will be forever changed by the experience. Running always leaves you better than when you started. No matter how temporarily bruised your body is at the end of run, its the spirit that's uplifted."

Here's my sketchnote with some ideas to build mental toughness and resilience (authored by Ultra-marathon runner Jeremy Singh ).

Which of these ideas resonate with you?

LinkedIn Post: https://www.linkedin.com/posts/anujmagazine_two-insights-from-a-12-hour-long-distance-activity-7043233329235578880-8Me_/?utm_source=share&utm_medium=member_desktop

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