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My first marathon was a DNF

first marathon experienceRunning happened to me as an accident when my friend enrolled my name for my first ever marathon – The Standard Chartered Mumbai Marathon, 10 years back. Though I was a yoga regular and a routine meditator, I had never thought and believed in running due to my asthmatic condition.


I am a Banker by profession, which in real means far from a 9 to 5 job. Health had gone for a toss later being working in night shifts for almost 5 years. My Asthma had reached another level.

It was one of those stages in your life when you are completely bogged down & waiting for a miracle to happen in your life. I was looking for a fundamental change in my life to do away with stress and anxiety.

Though my meditational practice supported me in managing my frustration, it was somehow not enabling me to discover peace and harmony.


Miracles don’t happen, until & unless you put efforts on it.


January 16, 2011, the day when I ran my first Marathon. The memories are still so fresh. My friend who registered me into this marathon could not run due to some personal reasons left me on my own.

I almost thought of quitting


first marathonLow on confidence and dreaded with a thought of running without training and preparation, I had almost decided not to participate while standing in the Start Line. Then I saw an old man may be in his early 70s, getting ready for the run. I look around to find a lot of positivity and though I was nervous I got the feel of making it.

It was a good feeling to start the run. As it progressed, the feeling of giving up started dominating the good one.


The Run Experience

marathonFirst 10 km, I was quick and felt very light. The sense of completion was already flying on my mind.

After crossing 20 km, I felt an aching sensation in my toes and cramps in my stomach.


As I reached 30 km, I started getting side stitches, losing muscles, and was barely able to breathe.

I wanted to quit, to go home to get a warm bath and sleep. But then, as they say, you must try and give it your best shot, and that is what I did.

In a Marathon, one of the most important decisions to make is when to quit and when to move on. You need to listen to your body.


Though strong in determination, my shortness of breath and physical strain forced me to stop at 37 km. My body was giving me signals, and I decided to quit and comeback strong next time. Yes, my first marathon was a “Did Not Finish”

‘Failure is so important; we speak about success all the time. But it is the ability to resist or use failure that often leads to greater success’’–  J K Rowling 

Celebrating failure

marathon happinessFor the first time in my life, I celebrated failure. Even though I could not finish the race, there was still a sense of achievement in me.

Those 5 hours of experience on the road changed my life forever. I found peace and the concept of meditative running. 

I worked on the lessons learned during my first marathon. Developed a proper marathon training calendar and started preparing for the next run.

My running journey…

Its been 10 years now from the day of my first run and Today I have been a part of 50 plus marathon experience. Running has now become a regular part of my life. In fact, it’s not about running for me anymore. It’s meditation.

Thank You


Thank You for reading it through. I hope, my first marathon experience would have been able to touch the first chapter of your upcoming running book.


Also, if you have a relatable story to share, do let us know in our comment box. We would love to publish the same under our motivation category.


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This Post Has 8 Comments

  1. Nachiket

    All articles very nicely written and very inspirational !!! Keep running and inspiring!!!

    1. therunningmonk

      Thanks a lot Nachiket. Hope the blogs have inspired you to start Running.

      Keep Running, Keep Inspiring. Cheers!!!

  2. Unknown

    Superb yaar..?You are an inspiration to many people out there!!!

    1. therunningmonk

      Thanks a lot Sir for your motivation. Just trying my bit to motivate people to be fit through Running.

      Keep Running, Keep Inspiring. Cheers!!!

  3. Satya Padhi

    Said it so well.. I mean failures are important for success. In fact every success is followed by failures or a series of it. The way you kept moving for 37 Kms without having any practice is highly charging to know. It must have been a real confidence booster experience for you. Would love to read posts more like this.

    1. therunningmonk

      Thanks a lot Satya. Yes, Marathon is a mind game. Your body will give 100 reasons to Quit, what matters is whether your mind is ready to give up or not.

      Keep Running, Keep Inspiring. Cheers!!!