Firstly, I am not a very physical person.
Secondly, I have never participated in a marathon.
Thirdly, I have friends who have gone through breast cancer which is what this run is all about.
So, when PINKATHON came up in Chennai I knew I had to do it. No excuses, I told myself although I wasn’t very sure about my ability to make it in time at 5 am early morning and also complete the run. I managed to convince my favourite niece, Gomathi to give me company and together we participated in our very first marathon (for a cause).
PINKATHON, a run solely for women “to encourage women’s health and fitness. It aims to raise awareness about breast cancer, its causes and prevention because unfortunately, breast cancer is the leading cause of cancer deaths amongst women worldwide, in spite of it being one of the curable cancers if detected early. The key to controlling this disease therefore, is to create awareness about preventive measures for breast cancer. PINKATHON offers the running distances of 3 Kms, 5 Kms & 10 Kms giving each runner an opportunity, to run in their comfort zone.”
Another reason that I managed to make it for this run – dashing Milind Soman was part of this entire initiative.
I have been an ardent admirer of this handsome crusader (swimmer, model, actor, etc) while I was still studying in school/college. So, even if I was going to just see him from afar LIVE (!) I was going for it. Call me stupid or dumb, whatever.
The last time I woke up at 4 in the morning was when I was studying for my exams in school and that was ages ago, it seems. I got ready excitedly. Very supportive hubby and son tagged along, wondering all along whether I really knew what I was getting into. I felt great donning the I AM A PINK SISTER t.shirt and pinning on my bib with my number 7891. Once inside the arena at Island Grounds, Chennai, we were surrounded with this wave of around 6000 women, girls – all eagerly waiting to chip in for the cause like me and my niece.
But, then, more was to come. Warming up was still on the agenda we found out. And, suddenly the stage was thrown wide open to a ZUMBA group that led us all into warming up before the actual race/walk began. The moves were fast, seductive and foot tapping.
Hesitant at first to let go before such a huge crowd, I kept watching it all and then, looking at women of all ages, sizes and weight shaking themselves to the music I told myself – To hell with the amateur dancing of mine, To hell with my conscious behaviour. The only person I knew in this place was my niece and I just freaked out. Wooooo!
Both of us loved it, loved making a fool of ourselves and enjoying it all the same. And yes, warming up too in the process. I have never enjoyed myself so much in public before….I was loving it and if any doubts had been lurking in any corners of my mind, they just scattered away.
I was reminded of the time I used to attend music concerts to cover them as a Cultural Correspondent. Then, I had the duty of assignments so, I had to restrain myself. Today, nothing like that was there so, I had a wonderful time.
I met some women still undergoing chemotherapy but participating in the race. What an inspiration! And, so much more older than me too….
The race left me feeling a great sense of fulfillment and achievement. PINKATHON had helped me contribute my little bit for the cause, had inspired me to not take my body for granted and yeah! prove to myself that I COULD wake up early everyday and exercise if I really wanted.
My heartfelt thanks to the organizers of the event, to those who thought of commencing such a lovely initiative. I am hoping to continue participating in the marathon every year.
Love you all who chipped in to make this event a success….
And to all the women who could not make it this time, you can still do it next year or better still, begin taking care of your body from this very minute.
And the husbands, fathers, brothers and all those men who stood behind to cheer their women for this cause….Thank you. I know you love your women……