Monday, September 20, 2010

Interview with a half-marathon runner

Marine of the United States Marine Corps runs ...
Image via WikipediaMy current cubicle lifestyle is not giving me enough exercise.  So I tried joining a gym and even went to it a few times ;) But then my friend who used to take to the gym got transferred and I was unable to go the gym due to the car addicted society here. So when I saw that my cousin Shiva (@nitturis )  was running 15 Kms a day and even completed a half marathon, I was interested. I though this would be a perfect anti-dote to my exercise starved body. So I  had an interview with him regarding how he got started up and when kept him going .

A: What was the motivation for getting started? 
Shiva (S) : I was overweight, and even more by brother's son who was just 15 yrs old was even more overweight. So initially my aim was to make him lose some weight and I thought, even I am not fit. So it will help me too. So that was the motivation for it all 

A: So how did you get started. What did you do before getting started? 
S: The main thing is to run. Initially the idea should be to complete a particular distance, say 5 KM. And then start running. Don't worry if you are not able run continuously, just focus on completing the distance. Stop if you have to - for some time but still complete the distance. If you are tired, walk for sometime. Initially, on the first day you may feel very tired and you will feel a lot of pain. But next day, don't ignore, just run. And from the third day, surely you will feel better and it will not be that painful. Also a good advice for a starter is that you should not expect any results for 3 to 4 months

A: Is there anything which we have to do after a run?
S: Yes you can do a few things so that you will be fit for running the next day. Basically to prevent cramps, you can do some stretching exercises. You can do yogasanas for stretching yourself. Well, actually the surya namaskars fit the bill perfectly. It will stretch you and you will become fit also. 

A: What are the dietary suggestions you have?
S: You have to drink more water as you will be dehydrated easily. You have to take more juices. Drink juice without ice and without sugar. If you need to sweeten it, try to use some honey. Also try to avoid rice at night and eat rotis. Also avoid coffee as it will decrease your stamina. Add more proteins into your food. If you are a vegetarian like me, dry fruits are good source of proteins in your diet.

A: Any other general advice for being to run successfully?
S: It all boils down to your motivation level. Aim for a 10K run. Join a running club. Get some company so that you can motivate each other. Buy an iPod, so that you will not feel bored to run. Always try to run. Also maintain good sleep  habits. Actually the sleep will come by itself because you will have been tired.Also have the right attire. Sweat shirt and shorts would be ideal. 

Thanks to Shiva for the interview. It has given me a good feel of what it takes to run.

So if any of my readers are also runners and have some tips for me or queries which I can ask my cousin are most welcome.

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