Tuesday, November 1, 2016

On the run instead of the workbench: 8k/10mi/13.1mi/26.2mi

It's been quite a while without any update. A lot of things happened since, some good, some bad. I am still around. Unfinished kits are still sitting on the workbench. I swear I'll get back to them soon.

Last year, I and a bunch of friends signed up to run the Hot Chocolate 5K in Chicago last year for fun. I've never ran more than 400m in my life and I've been just sitting around and eating for the past couple of years. To get me in shape to at least complete the 3.1 mile race, I started my running. Unexpectedly, it became my therapy, gave me time to escape from the harsh reality and to cope with life in general.

Early this year, to give myself more reasons to keep training, and something to look forward to, I signed up for the Chicago Half Marathon in September. I signed up for a couple more races in between. The Shamrock Shuffle 8k race in April, the Soldier Field 10 mile in May. In the process, I started to do Saturday long run with Nike+ Run Club in Chicago. Gradually increasing my mileage. It's amazing that only in a couple of months, from barely able to finish running 1 mile, I was able to run 15+ miles. A buddy talked me into putting in an application for the Chicago Marathon. Since there is a lottery for the entry due to its popularity. my original plan is to try 26.2 miles in 2017, if I get in this year, I'll defer it to 2017 and if I don't, I'll put in an application again next year. Then, I got this in my email:

I got in! With the encouragement of Running Club buddies, I kept on training for the Marathon. In the mean time, work travel got kind of out of hand the second half of the year. Since August, I can count the number of days I spent at home with my hands. To keep up with my training, I ran wherever I was - along the Danube in Budapest, Hungary, along the Rhine in Prague, Czech Republic, in Bochum, Germany, in Suzhou, China and in the middle of nowhere in Pennsylvania. Got lost running in places that I don't know, but thanks to Google Map, I could always find my way back.

With NRC Budapest
Made a wrong turn and got myself lost in Prague
3 weeks ago, I ran my first ever marathon and I managed to finish it! Accomplished my primary goal of finishing a marathon, missed my secondary goal of finishing it under 5 hours by 00:01:16.