With the increasing number of marathon participation in Kolkata, it is safe to say that the craze of marathons in Kolkata is catching up and it is a great way of proving to the world that we are not a lazy city and if given the opportunity, we live up to it.
Marathons are giving India’s professional and amateur runners from Kolkata and around the country, a proven platform to showcase their talent and experience the rarefied atmosphere that pervades such a sporting event.
Other than running for a good cause, it is amazing to see so many people gear up for the run.
Among the many excited faces in the Kolkata marathons, you are sure to see a fit and smiling Prema Rajaram – senior correspondent at CNN NEWS 18 (and one of the ambassadors of Pinkathon) not as a reporter but as an enthusiastic participant, who manages to maintain a balance between her hectic schedule and regular marathon participation. Team Beacon Kolkata got candid with Prema Rajaram.
How and why did you start running marathons?
I started running in the year 2015, my first run was for 10km at the end of which I felt so much accomplishment on getting up on a Sunday early morning and doing something so good. Though I had the ache and pain afterward, I was so excited to do this, that I kept up with it almost every Sunday after that. Since I was into gymming and yoga, so it was little easier for me to keep up. Then gradually I started being a part of nearly all marathonsin Kolkata and as many as I could take part in outside the city. I would even run while on holidays. I was just motivated to do better and realized that there is so much in the world of running.
How many marathons have you been a part of?
I have participated in 3 full marathons, seven half marathons and about four 10km runs; and apart from that I also help in organizing marathons that help a lot of new runners connect with the regular ones through a Whatsapp group called ‘Dose of Fitness’ representing and uniting the aspirations of the city in the running circuit. At times, I also participate in community runs as an initiative to bring the community together, which helps them to exchange views and ideas on running and exchange information on marathons and other events related to fitness.
What does a marathon mean to you?
I have traveled across the country for various marathons, so for me, a marathon is about exploring the place while running on the roads and site-see in a very different way. It is also seeing the energy level of the people that keep you going, you get to meet people from various places and that also motivates you and make you realize that across the country you have so many people with the same passion for running marathons. The high that you get after getting the finisher’s medal and knowing the fact that to have seen a different place in a way not many others have, is an amazing feeling.
My first outstation marathon was in Cherrapunji, that was my first uphill marathon and also the first time that I ran in the rain. Prior to that I had never visited the place and I was never in practice of running uphill, it was a tough run but that moment was so exciting to run amidst that kind of scenic beauty. It was tough but I enjoyed it.
Is there any tip that you would give to marathon runners?
Every sport has its pros and cons, so it is very important to understand your body. Running is a strenuous sport and it is important to realize that. For example, people say that running on the road causes knee problems, but then there is a cure for it so it is better to run than to sit at home and welcome diseases. Running uses some muscles so you can compensate with cycling or yoga. The point here is to keep fit.
Don’t start suddenly, you need to start with smaller distances and go bigger, don’t just run because someone else is, know your body requirements.
Which is your dream marathon?
It would definitely be the Comrades marathon in South Africa which is an 89km run that needs to be completed within a specific time. Someday I will also participate in the iron man marathon but as of now I just want to enjoy my runs.
To watch her JBG Kolkata Trail Run video, click here.