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

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Balancing the Four dimensions (Warning: This is mostly not about running)

In today's fast paced environment, balancing work and personal life is a challenge for most professionals. In my case this has extended to four dimensions over the last few years as the personal life is broken down into three distinct components all of which I am passionate about: Family, Distance running and Dream A Dream.I have not been able to do much else outside of these four dimensions - in fact there have been times that I have struggled to keep up in one or more of these dimensions. Elaborating on these four:

Work:
I completed 4 years in my current job at Mformation India this week. Building a high calibre technical software delivery team and motivating them to work in a dynamic, rapidly growing environment of a small/mid-size technology company took a lot of time and energy during the waking hours of the last four years. From 4 employees in June 2005 the team has grown to over 150 - this period has not been without numerous instances of high pressure filled long days going well late into the night. Working evening hours mainly due to conference calls to accommodate different timezones is a common bane of the IT industry in India.Working with a East coast company means calls can go late into the night but on the positive side the mornings are usually free. Working with a West coast company as I had done in my previous two jobs can often result in calls both in the evenings and mornings. What has helped me cope is that I have been able to motivate myself to wake up and go out for a run or cycling on most days irrespective of the number of hours of sleep. In fact, the discipline of regular excercise has helped me better manage the stress at work. Also, it has helped that I do not travel too often on work - frequent travel can be disruptive to regular running.

Family:
I would not be able to spend so much time on running and running related activities without the support and understanding of my family members. I have been able to ensure that I make time for any specific school or family engagement. I do not believe that any major event or commitment was missed by me due to my running(though I have missed a few due to work). We have also been taking family vacations at a reasonable frequency. It has helped that my children are both teenagers and have not needed much help from me for their studies. As is typical of teenagers nowadays, they prefer to be left on their own rather than have their parents constantly look over their shoulders and they are not morning people. Many a times when I return home after a long run their day is usually just beginning. The last few months have been more stressful than usual: finishing up the flat in Domlur, College admisisons for my daughter and then the shifting of the home and settling down in the new place. Nevertheless, I was able to run the April and May full marathons after a very hectic day before the run and very little sleep the night before. My compulsive obsession with running is now kind of taken matter of factly in our family and everyone adjusts accordingly.

Running:

Marathon running means a high commitment of time during training and the actual event. In the last four years I have run over 20 marathons including the two ultra marathons in Bangalore organised by RFL. Many of these have involved travelling - I have been to Mumbai every year since 2004. I have also run in NJ, Richmond and Washington DC. I managed to take the family on a holiday to the US in 2006 and UK in 2007 while also running the NJ marathon and London marathon respectively. While for the last couple of years I have been doing long runs of over 25Km/two and a half hours regularly I have usually managed to keep myself free at least one of the the two weekend days. Besides the training and the running in events I have also been taking the time to help out RFL - in the organisation of the 1st ultra in December 2007 and then as an active contributor to the RFL core team. I also spend considerable time and effort on running and marathon related surfing on the web.

Dream A Dream :
I first heard about DAD in May 2006 when registering for the Lipton International marathon in Bangalore . After I met with Vishal and couple of their employees then and learnt about the work they were doing I signed up to raise some money for them. Ever since then I have been involved with Dream A Dream one way or another. And it has enriched my life and given me a tremendous sense of satisfaction. I have raised funds using my Mumbai runs of 2008 and 2009 and more recently as a Care Champion in the Sunfeast 10K at Bangalore. I am overwhelmed with the support that I have received from friends and family members from around the world. Of course, the fact that I have been volunteering with the organisation in the IT program and as a mentor has helped me talk to them with conviction about the tremendous impact they are making on the lives of under privileged children in Bangalore. The passion and sincerity of the employees of Dream A Dream and the various volunteers that I have met is quite amazing. Based on my experiences with DAD so far I am more than happy to contribute my bit to spreading the word on running for a cause specially Dream A dream. The story in Outlook moneyis a result of one such effort. I would highly recommend to all runners that they run for a cause that they like. I intend to stay engaged with Dream A Dream and do what I can to help scale the organisation over the next few years.