Now now – I know that most of you are already wondering what I was doing at the Midnight Marathon. I mean, I do not really come across as a fitness freak. Well, lets just say that I was lured into it, courtesy my over-enthu husband (AB) who had been there last year. He ran 10kms last year – this year he was being sweet and he did the 5kms run(/walk) with me.
(Before you scroll down expecting to see amazing pics, let me tell you that the pictures are rather blurry and taken from my phone. I was there to run, not click pics 😦 )
So what was it like?
It was a fest. You know like the sante – only with fitness freaks. This had people dressed in the corporate tees (mostly teams from different companies were around) and tracks. And a lot of them were pros. When I reached there, there were so many people who were stretching and warming up, I was scared. I mean, I had actually just registered because I wanted to experience it. But then there were all these people who were there with proper training. Ofcourse, these people were not running the Fun Run*. These people were semi pros who were either running the 10kms or the half or full marathon. But the atmosphere and the crowd was amazing. It was like Bangalore was awake. There was a stage with band performance going on, stalls that were selling marathon related stuff – tees, back-packs etc., and the food stalls.
More Details on the Marathon:
For the run, the organizers cauldron off a track. The entire track is guarded with cops and security folks – which basically means its all safe. There are “dhol-walahs” who cheer you as you run. And there is the road medical assistance which is by your side in case of a medical emergency. I saw a couple of folks drop and get hurt and the medical care was by their side in a bit.
*Fun Run: This was the 5kms fun run. The age limit for this run was 12 years and above. And there were on the spot registrations open for this. I ran/walked this.
10km Run: Like the name suggests this was a 10kms long run (2 laps of the same track as the 5kms track). You would get a timer that you can attach to your shoe laces and it will help you track the time in which you complete the run. You get this timer from runs ranging 10kms to full marathon. None for 5kms 😦
Half Marathon: This means a 21kms run. I did not stick around for this – but I guess everyone who has been training for some time can run this with ease. You do not necessarily have to be a pro though – you just need to be active in some sort of physical sport to be able to do this with ease.
Full Marathon: 42 freaking kms! That’s all that I have to say. Really! Oh and RESPECT to everyone who does this.
- Great crowd – they are the reason I could complete the run. The enthusiasm of the crowd and the cheering squad is a big plus. Of course AB too was a big motivator for me 🙂
- Security is great – do not worry about safety. There were 4000 folks running the fun run and it was all safe. Moreover, there were cops and security folks all around.
- Food stalls – the items at the food stalls are not exorbitantly priced. They are not cheap either. You can have a chaat for Rs.20 and idly for Rs.30.
- The clean track – the organizers actually spent their own money to fix the track (they go the potholes filled) so that the marathon runners do not trip and hurt themselves.
- Sense of accomplishment – at the end of the run you would feel really proud of yourself for having done something so sporty. I felt really proud at the end of it. And if you can also sense that in the post here please excuse me. 😉
- Running for a good cause – you need to pay to get registered to run. This money is utilized for a good cause – to donate money to an NGO.
- No water at the Water Stations – we crossed around 4-5 water stations in the 5kms track. However, NONE of them had water bottles. They were empty boxes and bottles thrown around. My guess is that the water bottles got over and they did not bother refilling. 5kms was probably a very small track for the organizers but for newbies like me who were expecting water (and so I did not carry one with me) got nothing. This was pretty sad.
- The track was not planned very well – the track was basically the road around the KTPO Convention ground and so we would run down the same road and then back up to complete the 5kms. There were folks running up and down the same track. This area was not divided and so the folks who ran faster had little/narrow path to run back up the same track while the rest of us who were kind of slow were occupying the maximum area.
- Children – not really a con but there were a lot of little children also running this marathon and they would squeeze in from the crowd and come right infront of you and usually when you run you tend to not look too low and you might end up bumping into a kid! *oops* It happened a lot to me – but no I did not hurt any kid. It did slow me down a bit.
- The footpath – the footpaths have the lamp-post and their supporting wires. And if you are running on that you might end up bumping into these wires and lamp-posts. This area should be marked.
All in all this was a fun experience. Bangalore is the only place that hosts a midnight marathon and its an experience one should not miss. You can read more about it here.