More about me as a runner

2017 Target Events

  • 15th Jan - Standard Chartered Mumbai Marathon - 3:49:54
  • 12th Feb - Auroville Marathon HM - 1:46:28
  • 29th April - Western Pacific Marathon
  • 15th October - Bangalore marathon - tentative

Blog Archive

Saturday, January 26, 2013

SCMM 2013 : Mission Accomplished!!




I was elated to cross the finish line of the FM at the Standard Chartered Mumbai Marathon  for the 8th time on 20th Jan 2013 in 3:37:20 at an average pace of  5:09 per Km - pretty much at the mid-point of my target time of between 3:35:51(5:07 per Km) and 3:38:40 (5:11 per Km).  This is over two and half minutes faster than my previous best at the Mohawk Hudson River marathon in October 2012 and over 11 minutes faster than my time in SCMM 2012. Beating the qualification time for my age category by 2 minutes and forty seconds should hopefully seal my entry for the April 2014 edition of Boston marathon . Will know for sure only in September when the registrations happen - either way I am very satisfied with my timing and I don't think I am going to push any further to try and  better this. At least that is how I feel right now.

My pre-race schedule and routine was pretty much the same for the 10th consecutive year.  As this has worked for me and has enabled me to improve my timing every year I am reluctant to change it - though the temptation was there to enjoy the experience of SCMM with other Bangalore runners who typically stay at a hotel near the start point.  I reached Mumbai on Friday night and stayed with my relative in Govandi. On Saturday morning after collecting the bib at WTC I had a  lunch buffet of pasta,pizza, chocolate fudge cakes at Flamboyante  with my brother-in-law before returning home to rest from 4PM onwards. I skipped the interaction with Haile Gebrselassie organised by Procam as it was too early and I wanted to try and get some sleep Friday night. Saturday night as usual I went to bed around 10PM after a rava upma dinner. Woke up a little after 3am , took an auto to Chembur station at 345am and caught the 4:15am train to VT. Had the company of  fellow Bangalore runner Amit Joshi on the train ride. In addition to the 3 bananas at home I had some almonds and salted pecans on the train. Reached VT station at 4:55am , used the toilet there, changed into my shoes and then headed towards Azad maidan.  After eating my fourth banana of the morning and  checking in my bag after a short warm up I emptied my bladder again and  headed towards the holding area. During this period met a lot of runner friends both from Bangalore and Mumbai. The energy and buzz at the station as well as the Azad maidan is very much part of  the marvelous annual Mumbai marathon experience. For some strange reason the gate at the holding area did not open on time resulting in the waiting runners getting restless. When they did open a bit after  5:41am the runners headed briskly to the start-line expecting to pause there for a short time prior to the race start. In all this melee the start zones of A, B and C made no sense.  In any case the race had already started and the runners just continued running past the start line. As per my Garmin I crossed the start line a little after 5:43am. 

I  started running  alone focused on my pace - actually trying not to go too fast. Even then I ended up doing the 1st three Kms at under 5 mins per Km pace. I steadied myself at between 5 and 5:10 per Km for the new few Kms reaching 10Km in under 51 minutes. Around this time Pankaj Rai breezed past me. The weather was quite pleasant though it did not seem as cool as it was when in the holding area. Heading towards the sealink saw a few familiar runners among the half marathoners heading in the other direction. Surprisingly I went past Pankaj on the sealink stretch. Also crossed Sanjay Agarwal - another Bangalore runner . Towards the end of this stretch Udaya went past me - he was targeting a faster finish than me and was catching up on  time lost to a loo break. I reached the half way point pretty much as per plan in about 1:46:48 at an average pace of  under 5:04 feeling quite strong. I consumed my 2nd Gu gel around the 26Km point (had the first one just before entering the sea link around 14.5Km).

This time around there was no mixing up of the FM runners with the half marathoners.  I continued to stay focused on my pace interacting very little with fellow runners or with volunteers or with the crowd. In fact when runners called out to me I acknowledged them with a nod of the head or wave of the hand rather than by calling back.  I held at below or around my target pace till Km 29(29.5Km in 2:28:37 at 5:03 per Km pace)  and then the pace started to drop gradually to under 5:10 per Km. Around the 30Km mark I felt comfortable that I was on target for finishing around 3:38 and thought for a few seconds about pushing harder for a finish around 3:36. However, I decided against taking a chance of burning out and fading due to over trying.The 36th Km on the Peddar road flyover was my slowest at 5:40. However going down the flyover gave me some momentum that enabled me to do the last  few Kms in 5:04,5:15,5:17,5:24,5:22 and 5:23. The last 2 Kms was tough as usual - egged on by the cheering crowds  and helped by the separation of FM runners in a different lane I managed to avoid slowing down too much and went over the finish line as the race clock was crossing 3:39. 


Though sore all over, my glutes and calves held up quite well. However, I felt quite  weak and giddy after the finish  and so did not hang around for too long at the finish line with other runner friends who had finished before me. Felt much better after  fellow runner Navin Thangiah got some juice and glucose biscuits for me inside Azad maidan.  As I had an afternoon flight back to Bangalore  I headed back home soon after happy and satisfied.  The pleasant Mumbai weather(I did not feel hot or humid even on the marine drive stretch on the return), the discipline and rigour of  the FIRST  'Run Less,Run Faster' training regimen  and of course support and best wishes from family and friends enabled me to achieve my goal. My weight was about 55.5 Kgs the night before the race and right after the race it measured 54 Kgs. Of course within a couple of days after the race I was back to 56 Kgs or 123 Lbs. 

Standard Chartered Mumbai Marathon 2013 - Marathon 5:40 Start            Back
Bib Number218
NameBHASKER SHARMA
GenderMALE
CategoryVETERAN
Overall Rank79
Category Rank17
Gender Rank76
Split@3 Km00:14:05 at an Avg Speed of 12.78 Kmph
Split@15 Km01:15:32 at an Avg Speed of 11.92 Kmph
Split@20 Km01:41:48 at an Avg Speed of 11.79 Kmph
Split@27 Km02:16:03 at an Avg Speed of 11.91 Kmph
Split@28 Km02:22:11 at an Avg Speed of 11.82 Kmph
Split@29.5 Km02:28:37 at an Avg Speed of 11.91 Kmph
Net Time03:37:20 at an Avg Speed of 11.65 Kmph
Gross Time
Average performance of the race
16
12
8
4
@3@15@20@27@28@29.5@21K
 Speed  12.78    11.92    11.79    11.91    11.82    11.91    11.65     
Overall Runners Statistics
1,000
750
500
250
33 - 44 - 55 - 6>6Total
 Runners  6    216    858    928    108    2,116  
Overall MALE Runners Statistics
1,000
750
500
250
<3 td="">3 - 44 - 55 - 6>6Total
 Runners  6    207    791    857    99    1,960  
Overall VETERAN Runners Statistics
200
150
100
50
<3 td="">3 - 44 - 55 - 6>6Total
 Runners  1    44    168    187    20    420  

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