I hail from a typical middle-class family in Chennai, where my unwavering childhood dream was to become a civil engineer, even in the face of the prevailing trend toward Computer Science and IT careers. Following my education, I further developed my skills at Larsen & Toubro (L&T) through campus placement. Subsequently, I pursued an MBA at IIM Shillong. While my career advanced with another tenure at L&T, I occasionally dabbled in running as a recreational pursuit.
My running passion was a recurring theme in my life, though with sporadic consistency. The thrill of short 10 km runs captivated me. But after 2015, my running dwindled, coinciding with significant weight gain during my tenure with the Andhra Pradesh Government. The wake-up call came during a Vizag vacation when I was barely allowed to go paramotoring due to exceeding the weight limit by just half a kilogram. In 2019, upon moving to Mumbai, I fully embraced its running culture, shedding 10 kgs in 9-10 months. Beyond mere weight loss, my physical and mental well-being markedly improved, reinforcing my commitment.
Just before the COVID-19 pandemic, I elevated my running journey with a personal coach, focusing on strength training and fitness. My running journey has been a true blessing, marked by consistent improvement, venturing into half marathons, and culminating in my recent participation in a full marathon in Ladakh. This event drew around 1000 participants, presented unique challenges, including harsh terrain and altitudes of 11,000 feet. I had prepared extensively through hill training in Mumbai, adapting my strategy on the fly during the marathon to reach the finish line within the specified time frame. The sense of accomplishment upon crossing the finish line was indescribable.
Running became a meditative practice that set a positive tone for my day. It reinforces the idea that I've already conquered the hardest part right at the start of the day. This newfound positivity extended beyond exercise; I invested in mental well-being through contemplation, and journaling, significantly enhancing my overall quality of life and productivity at work.
Today, my life is effortless, driven by self-improvement in physical and mental aspects, providing motivation, emotional stability, and stronger relationships with loved ones.