Author Archives: hemangfans

About hemangfans

An IT Savvy Person and an enthusiastic runner who is always available on the go ....

Unlocking it in my way….

We have reached at a level where in the lockdown is over however we are still to Unlock 1.0. All the efforts to fight against the deadly pandemic is still going on in full swing. We all are still blessed to be standing strong and till now have managed to over-come the deadly virus.

I always took lockdown as a blessing (you can read my previous post). Well, COVID-19 and lockdown have taught me lots of new things in my life. These are the things which I will never ever forget. Listing down few of them which I can think of:-

  • Working from home (WFH) will be the new trend in India. Till now I have never worked from home (wfh) for so many days (to be precise almost 3 months till now). And I am hoping I will be working more from home as compared to before from office.
  • I made so many video calls for official as well as personal reasons, wherein earlier before lockdown I hardly used to have video calls except for any official work.
  • For the full lockdown, I did wfh wearing only shorts and tees as compared to wearing formal clothes and leather shoes which I always thought gives a work-type feeling in office.
  • For the first time my wife cut my hair and she did give me a decent look. Hence now onwards she is appointed as my future hair-stylist 😊
  • As I had more time to spend with myself, I noticed that I have more of silver strands as compared to black on my head. But am still young by heart 😉
  • Exercising daily during the complete lockdown period at home made me realize that henceforth I don’t need to join any gym.
  • I completed reading approximately 10 books during lockdown (earlier my average time for completing a book was 1 month).
  • Origami is the new art I learnt. I loved their techniques of making paper art items. I did make so many different items like fishes, stars, rabbits, crab, birds, etc.
  • Out of boredom I tried making a sketch and I discovered a new hidden talent in me. My 1st sketch came out to be a nice one and hence I decided to sketch an art every single day and I did follow the protocol. And now I have a big portfolio of so many sketches with me.
  • I have learned the art of buying vegetables and fruits. Now I know how to identify and pick up good quality vegetables and I also know all the market prices 😊
  • E-meetings was the new mantra to meet all my friends. I did not meet a single friend of mine during the full lockdown period. I missed all my running buddies and all other friends whom I used to party with.
  • Web series is the latest addition to the numerous old and new movies, gujrati dramas I have seen during this period.
  • Playing online games on social media was fun. I played games like housie, selfie hunt, dumb sharades, quizzes etc.

Basically, my lockdown was filled with work, pleasure to spend time with family and for myself which I feel was a much-needed break for me. I hope you all also must have utilized this lockdown to your fullest.

The feeling of being loved…..

Love is a complex set of emotions, behaviours, and beliefs associated with strong feelings of affection, protectiveness, warmth, and respect for another person. Love is an emotion which makes our life worth living. It makes us feel lively and energetic. It makes us feel high and flying. Love can paint a smile on your face. Love can make you walk on the clouds. You can see all colours of the rainbow when you are in love.

It is said that you fall in love, but actually love never makes you fall. If you manage to get the right partner to love then you always rise. Love helps you to fly high in the sky and not sink underground.

Sometimes we feel an instant connection with a person whom we meet for the first time, while sometimes we don’t feel the same even after spending years of being together. We may develop liking for different people in different phases of our life but finding that right person with whom the soul can connect is very rare. It also happens that the person is miles apart but love makes you feel closer to your heart. That person may not be physically present with you but love makes you feel that the person is always in your mind and along with you. True love helps to get the vibes and feel it every minute with the one you love.

Love is as scary as it is beautiful. Love fills up your heart with a feeling that can only be filled by the sheer simplicity of unconditionally loving someone and being loved in return. It’s the little things that make it worth it; the surprise kisses, the warmest hugs, the stolen glances hidden from everybody else.

Love is the word, the feeling, which our Heart the most vital organ is associated with. Love makes our heart beat. Love also make our heart skip a beat. Love has equal importance in our life as the heart has in our body. Everyone wants love. No one wants to lose it. It’s the best thing one can give and receive.

Blessing to be ….

COVID-19 which has spread across 199 countries and still on the rapid fire spreading wildly across the globe. No one knows when this horrific time will be over. Yet I am pretty confident and sure that we all together will pull through this tough crisis like many others in the past.

The Government had to make a choice between people’s lives or people’s livelihood. And I feel they had made the right decision of complete lockdown thus trying to save people’s life. Ultimately you cannot have a livelihood if you do not have your life!!!

Sitting at home we can look at it as a big challenge and also look at it as a blessing;

  • Blessing – to be at home along with your family and loved ones with whom we were not able to spend time due to busy office schedules or many other reasons.
  • Blessing – to be fit & healthy and not in between any chaos for those families who have been quarantined or some loved ones among them have been infected and quarantined.
  • Blessing – to re-visit our old days and do all the things which we used to do in our childhood days (where technology never had any upper hand on us)
  • Blessing – to watch all the pending web series or do things like reading, cooking, cleaning which were in your pending list.
  • Blessing – to upgrade your skills and knowledge in your respective areas with all the time in your hands.
  • Blessing – to chit chat with your friends, relatives, etc. using technologies like whatsapp calling, zoom, etc. which you were missing as most of them were busy in their own world.

And many more ….

Few things need to be kept in mind in such crisis situations :

  1. Heroes are made in Hard times – It is upto oneself as how we support the Government’s call for the lockdown and help breaking the chain of spreading the virus.
  2. Remember the Big Picture – Soon this too shall pass and things will be normal as before. Even the darkest nights have light casted by the Moon above us.
  3. Be on your routine – Don’t forget to keep on track with your daily routine. Try to maintain the same routine. Make sure you get up at the same time, do your regular chores like meditation, workout, praying, etc. It’s important to start your day in the morning with certain habits or rituals which will take you through the day
  4. Its OK not to feel OK – We are all humans and during these times it is very normal to have fear and anxiety for yourself and your loved ones. Let these emotions come out and pass through you and don’t block them … This too shall pass.

Gratitude every day. Gratitude is the antidote to Fear.

Keep Faith & Have Hope !!!

Stay indoors Stay safe !!!

Goals … go for it ….

No, I am not going to talk about football or hockey or any sports related goals.

As new year settles in many of us make New Year resolutions. I am sure many do follow. And many might leave it halfway. Now a days it has become a tradition to share your resolution on social media no matter whether you achieve it or not, but just put it up so that the world knows what are your plans  for the year.

So which category do you belong to?

a) Makes resolutions and does not follow
b) Makes resolutions but follows it for a few months
c) Makes resolutions which were the same as last year
d) Makes resolutions and seriously follows it for the full year
e) Does not believe in resolutions and hence does not make any

If your answer is a) it could probably mean that you just want to make some resolution for the sake of doing it or probably you just need a little push to pursue them.

If your answer is b) it means that till the time you were going easy you could manage it but as soon as it became hard on you, you stopped it 😊.

If your answer is c) then probably you don’t want to change the daily routine, you have got into since last year and also don’t want to put any extra effort for new resolutions.

If your answer is d) then you are one of the people who are very disciplined in your way of living and continues doing what you like no matter what the world says or does 😊.

If your answer is e) then inch pinch, we are sailing in the same boat 😉

I am a person who does not make any resolution at the start of the year, but yes I do keep setting up goals for myself as and when required. I feel setting up goals for oneself helps to leap forward. Goals help to provide a specific direction you want to move in. Goals also help in planning, preparing and executing the same. And the happiness one gets upon accomplishing the goal is beyond expressing. There need not be any specific time and date to set a goal. And also there is no timeframe to reach that goal. Goals can be of very strict disciplinary ways to a very flexi thing.

Incase you are still thinking about setting up goals then this is the right time to set it. Start making smaller goals. Reward yourself upon achievement. It’s okay if you fail. Atleast you have tried and then You can start again.

Goal – think it, plan it, execute it and achieve it.

A better tomorrow

“You always have time for the things you put first”

24 hours = 1,440 minutes = 86,400 seconds is what we all have with us in a day. No matter which part of the world you live in, we have the same amount of time with us every single day. It’s totally upto us as how we utilize this time. In my earlier posts too, I have mentioned time is running at a faster pace than we are. Time does not wait for anyone. You can read those posts here … link 1 & link 2

“I am busy with office work, I work for long hours at the office, I leave early from home, I have home responsibilities, I am balancing my life between professional and personal front, etc. etc.” Sounds similar correct? These were some of the excuses I also used to give myself 3 years ago. You can read my old post here on how i use to be a lazy bone type of person. And I am sure these and many more excuses you all must be giving yourself and others when someone asks you “Which workout have you done today for yourself?”

86,400 seconds are more than enough in a single day to fill your day with all the activities you want to do. Recently I was reading one article and found a few interesting facts :-

  • Indian viewers, on an average watch TV for 3 hours 44 minutes every day = 26 hours/week = 4.3 days/month = 1 month 22 days/year.
  • Indians spend roughly 180 minutes/day on smartphones = 21 hours/week = 3.5 days/month = 1 month 12 days/year.
  • As per a study done by Nokia, we check our phones every 6.5 minutes … that is almost 150 times a day and not only do we just check phones but we send an average of about a 100 messages per day.
  • Another 5 years of our life is spent on surfing the internet.
  • Another survey says that Indians spend 85% of their life indoors, i.e. either inside their homes or offices or schools or colleges.

And so, the list of such crazy facts are endless. The point here is, if we are spending so much time on the TV, mobile, social media surfing endless feeds/updates then how come we do not have time to exercise. Why can’t we just shut off all of the above for 30 minutes a day and do some workout for ourselves, better our future selves so that at a later age we can be thankful for taking care of our body.

This does not mean that one must stop all that you are doing on a daily basis, but we just have to allocate little time from our daily busy schedule and utilize this time towards improving our health and well-being. Just push yourself from the comfort zone you are currently in. Initially it will be difficult but once you are in a set rhythm then you will like the taste of it and will surely be thankful for the wise decision you have taken. We all have those 86,400 seconds with us every single day. Utilize these seconds for our body, for the wellness of ourselves, for our better tomorrow.

Bridge it all the way

Relationships are built everyday.

I termed these relationships as “Bridges”, and why. Why did I name it as a Bridge? The reason is that a Bridge is meant to connect two ends which are far apart. The ends which would have never met without the help of a bridge.

Bridges get built between friends, colleagues or with people wherever you go. Be it close or distant friends. Life of a Bridge is dependent upon the nature of each individual. Some Bridges are built fast and for a shorter duration in-order to enable you to travel shorter distances and some last long and forever helping you to have a safer journey through out. One may have a few bridges and others may have many bridges but more important is the life of each bridge and the medium how it is built.

Till now I have been successful in building many bridges, some strong and some weak too. I tend to start with a weak bridge and then over a period of time I try to invest time and put my best efforts to make it strong so that it can last long. Again, it is not necessary that all strong bridges last forever. Sometimes it also happens that I have started off with a strong bridge with the best of material used (i.e. honesty, trust) but these materials may get decomposed over a period of time if both the ends tend to forget the reason the bridge was built and hence may not last long.

Wise people have said that it’s always better to have one strong bridge instead of many weak bridges; which might not be able to sustain heavy loads or burdens. In my opinion I feel I should have strong as well as weak bridges in-order to balance out both.

Changes in weather occurs all the time. Similarly, changes are seen in the life of the bridges as well. Sometimes we experience bad weather and natural calamities (like cyclone) which is out of our control, in the same way the strongest of the bridges might fall. Possibly the amount of time invested in building it up was not good enough to sustain it any longer.

Sometimes it also happens that you might need to break one of your favorite bridges. Maybe this bridge could mean everything to you, it was one of the vital parts in your life. The flowers and fruits borne were most beautiful till now, however maybe the soil which was holding both ends of the bridge got spoiled beyond control and the last option was to bring it down.

Breaking existing bridges might help building new stronger bridges. Bridges are the way to move ahead in life. It should not become a hinderance. Remember that all bridges will break eventually at the end of your life.

I’d like to end with this apt quote “People come into your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime”.

It’s upto you how you mould and cherish the time and the bonds you share with the people around you.

Advantages of being a Tortoise

In my previous post I had mentioned a few random thoughts popping up in the mind of a slow runner. Incase you have missed it then you can read it here Tortoise in running shoes

I have observed that many runners feel that running at a slow pace is a waste of time. Running can be a simple, beneficial exercise for many people. Slow or fast, you’ll still reap loads of benefits and if you are slow, you are certainly not alone. So before you change your mind and throw away your running shoes just consider that slow running can also be beneficial. Continue reading

Tortoise in running shoes

Just some random thoughts came into my mind which I felt like penning down 😊

If one can recollect an old story of the legendary race between “The Hare and The Tortoise” where the Tortoise had won the race in-spite of Tortoise been a slow runner. But if one compares this scenario with any recent Marathon event then imagine the thoughts that would have popped up in the mind of today’s Tortoise ….Tortoise

  • Getting lost – I know you must be laughing but this is serious. For long races with loops and having lots of twists & turns then the runner tends to forget the way. If the runner has no sense of direction and if there are no sign boards then this is bound to happen.
  • Running out of water – Chances are high that the water stations might have finished their storage of water and if you are among the last runners than possibly they might have closed their water station too.
  • Reaching last – What if I reach last ?? … I mean the last person to reach where there is no one to overtake me.
  • Not making it before the cut-off – there are certain Marathon events when there is a cut-off time to cross the final mat and what-if-i-don’t-make-it-on-time ??.
  • Not getting a medal – If I did not finish the run before the cut-off time then I will lose my medal and hence all my efforts will be wasted 😦
  • Click-click – This is the most important part of running a Marathon. All the official photographers are busy capturing the main runners and forget to click pics of the slow or rather last of the lot runners. Not a single official pic of yours running in the Marathon = #youhavenottakenpartintheMarathon 😊

Distance running is about personal goals, improving your health and finding positive energy.

These are some real issues to think about for slower runners but there’s also many positive things that come with the back of the pack. I’ll talk about some of the wonderful things about being a slower runner in another blog post.

A Priceless Metal

Last week, I got a surprise gift from my very nearest and dearest running buddy. It’s a medal hanger with wordings “I CROSSED THE LINE”.

Only a Runner can understand and feel the joy of crossing the finishing line. I recollect that I, myself had tears in my eyes when I completed my maiden 10km run and the same feeling I had when I completed my first HM (Half Marathon 21.097 kms) and even while crossing the finishing line of the 25km marathon too (one of the toughest for me until now since it had 4 times inclines included in the route and the last few kms I was all by myself with all my known buddies either ahead or trying to catch up with me to reach the finish line).

This is a perfect gift for a runner who has thrived hard to earn a medal for himself/herself. The medal is the proof of the sweat burned, proof of waking up early (even before the milkman or the newspaper guy comes at your doorstep 😊), proof of calories burned, proof of determination to run every day, proof of not giving up no matter whatsoever the weather; be it a hot & humid day in summer, be it a heavily rainy day in the monsoons or a chilly winter morning; which never stopped me from running.

The impatient me could not wait any longer and I immediately got it fitted in my room with all my medals hanging. I also added few medals earned by my daughter and wife. Looking at the hanging medals I already am getting charged up to earn more. Frankly neither during my school or college days have I earned any medals and hence achieving such success at this stage of my life makes all these medals very precious and dear to me.

Running is not only about earning medals. I have been actively running since over 2 years now and running has taught me many things. Running helped me to know how to stay fit & healthy, it has helped me to get disciplined at late night outings as most of the weekends I have my long runs scheduled and for this I need to get up early so this means I have to sleep early 😊. Running also has got me connected to lots of other athletes and helped me make new friends who now have become an integral part of my life. It was because of Running I now have a very near and dear friend who is my mentor as well as my running buddy.

Experience one cannot forget

Roshni Cecelia Pereira is an avid runner, a house-wife and loving mother of 2 children. She happened to get into running to lose weight and since then she is unstoppable. Roshni was nominated twice for the Mumbai Road Runner Award night; in 2017 for Improved runner and in 2018 for Best runner.

Roshni till now has officially ran One Full Marathon, Eleven Half Marathons, Maiden 25Kms run, Seven 10 kms & One 5 kms and has won many podiums till now :-

  • 1st runner up @ Yeour Hill run – 21km
  • 1st runner up @ Keep on running (KOR) – 10 km
  • 1st runner up @ Goregaon Spirit of Sport run – 10 km in year 2018
  • 1st runner up @ Goregaon Spirit of Sport run – 5 km in year 2019

Pacing is the new liking of Roshni and she recently also had the experience as a Pacer to drive her bus loaded with people on time to the finishing line.

In just 2 years of time she achieved her initial goal of becoming a Marathoner.

You can read her experience of running her 1st official Marathon from her own heart.


The Experience of running my 1st Full Marathon !!!

“The pride in finishing a marathon is much greater than all the pain endured during the marathon.” Hal Higdon

On Race day…

I woke up at 1.20 am when the alarm rang in a fraction of second, no, it wasn’t the excite of the race, but the frustration of fight (silly one though) which had not allowed me to sleep whole night. Got ready by 3 am left with Sunil and Varsha to the station to take 3.30 am train for CST station (now I wasn’t in the mood at all, as I had not cleared my bowel). Reaching station my friend Varsha asked  me where is the  Garmin, and I was like, Holy Christ!! no records of my first FM on such expensive gadget what a waste 😉 …….Uff…… but I was still chilled……. Met my BBG gang in the train and I was normal by then… Samuel was asking me to take his Garmin watch, that was very sweet of him even my other runner friend Sunil was giving me his earphones, he runs with his earphones all time, for me it was ok, as I run without it, so it didn’t matter. After wishing goodbye to the HM’ers who got down at Mahalaxmi, we others sat there relaxed. We (Alwin, Rahul, Xavier, Jaj and me) reached the venue and started with the warm up….. I heard a voice shouting my name and it was my friend Ritu along with her hubby passing by, I told her to carry on I will catch up at the B line up………. At the time of stretching few thoughts started running in my mind, how I registered for this day.

Registration period / Training ……..

It all started in my Runners forum  group ,lets register for FM this year and train together….the ones who wanted to do, had registered for FM immediately once the registration had started, I was still reluctant about it, frankly speaking,  I’m a bit lazy to get up early in the morning during winters, and that’s only best time to train for us runners and  Running a marathon is not anybody’s cup of tea. It takes huge efforts, determination and commitment for a long time. and I was asking myself : Do you think you have it in you ?. Finally made up mind and registered on 13th September 2018. I thought. I was excited, nervous, and anxious. What I didn’t realize was how much training for a marathon would change my life…for the better. Started with the Gym training since then and running most of the time 10kms, 15kms and 21kms in months of Nov and Dec apart form this only one 35km I had done with help of John (hubby) for water support, poor fellow was in the car for 4hrs ;-), everybody in different groups encouraged me a lot. But still I wasn’t satisfied with training plan the reason is, it was not a systematic one, the way the actual Marathoners train……no coach to guide, just got useful tip from few friends and my runner forum group and Sam (Samuel) he guided me with all the do and don’ts all the time till the race day (yes but this is for sure I trained hard and strong). So I decided do a 42 Km to overcome my fear before hand and later not crib on the race by saying Why did I register for the race, or abusing my friends for it who had asked me to register ;-).  I always wanted to do a Full Marathon but I didn’t knew it would be this soon in two years of running (Also, I dream of running Comrades 🙂 ) …. So on 22nd Dec 2018, I get up early at 4 am get ready and leave the house by 5am and after warm up of 10 mins, I start my run in my locality finishing around 10kms and I go running to Goregoan west (3kms) , and a few kms I run  there at back road (Malad west near behind orbit mall) , then I proceed on S V road till Dahisar end and return, I come to back road doing last 4kms there, weather was so pleasant  it felt like never stopping that day. I took few breaks at general store, chemist, D’mart to purchase water…….during this run I was only on salted dates, water (before the run I had eaten 2 bananas which I always do during run or event days)……. I finished my 42.24 kms in 5.09.35 hrs (including all the breaks) … What a satisfaction it was !!!! ………. that’s it I’m ready!!!, there  was nothing as such hitting wall that day……… We had planned for few days trip to Goa where I relaxed completely and recovered as well (for a week). after that did few runs in 2nd week of Jan and gymming for few days ,then last  week I was  completely on rest till the D-day arrived, as people around me kept saying I overdid it, I reached to peak and etc etc,  so I controlled myself by not doing anything more further which could lead to injury and failure of the mission, only things I did was hydrate, hydrate ,hydrate  carb loading, sleeping,  stretching  from the  third last day of the D day.

Back to race day ………..

Reached the B line up section I met Ritu and her hubby Vijay as we were talking n walking we met Bijay and his friend we exchanged greeting n wishes, my eyes were looking out to my friend Vishu (Vishwanth) as we both had planned to start the race together n support each other but missed meeting him. I met Sameer, he gave me some tips and that was my actual plan (not to run with pacer) run on your own. Meeting such friends who inspires you, gives me always positive kind of vibes. I’m happy to meet them before the race. 🙂

The race started bang on time at 5.30am by the time I could reach the timing mat  it was 5.33 am , it was dark, the road was narrow , I felt like everyone were going slow  or maybe it was over crowed, few of runners  dashed me , one guy stamped shoe from behind , so much of chaos starting 2 /3 kms, was going on a steady pace not shooting the HR(Hear rate), few kms later I saw Sunil sir and Sangeeta ma’am running together I went towards them and greeted n moved forward , I was running on the middle of the road  stamping  some of the reflectors , that’s when Sunil sir called from behind and said don’t stamp over it …… Thank you sir I wasn’t attentive enough at that moment . While I was reaching peddar road I heard sound screaming like some herd is approaching it  was 4.30 hrs pacer bus I was with that bus till the peddar road down also met my friend Mani who was running strong,  then I left as I wanted to go with easy . I was feeling better and the weather was also ok till then, I felt, when reaching at Worli I was searching for HMers friends who were running couldn’t see any. Slow and steady I reached Bandra Sea Link I was still feeling strong , At 19 km I stopped to use portaloo , told myself few kms and the half way is over, reaching Shivaji park it was 24km and I don’t know what happened then negative things started  running thru my mind felt like stopping  and walk off home, but I told myself why you want to do that did you train for this day to quit over a small silly fight  ,(this silly fight happens in every house and especially if your spouse is a non runner, mentioning about it here because one should fight with your moods and not to give up under any such type of circumstances) No I said, I shouldn’t give up, I’m running for my joy and I’m going to complete it !!…. battling with my heart and mind (also praying). At 28.5 kms mark I again stopped for portaloo  had to wait there for few secs as both of the portaloo was in use, I somehow reached Worli dairy where we had to go in loops which was a bit boring where the turn wouldn’t come it was like going on and on,  but  at the same time it was sight to see the Kenyan elite runners  running from nowhere pass by next you…( from 27kms  to 40 kms I was stopping at all the water stations for drink water  feeling  like throat was getting dried all the time but at the same time enjoyed the presence of Mumbai crowd along with their little ones offering salted oranges, salt, dates, jaggery, water etc etc.) reaching before 36 km I  crossed my friend Alwin then met my friend  Ravindra , at the  start of Peddar road met my dearies Shweta, Ami, Sopan, Umed (God bless all the angel volunteers and the crowd for cheering out there for us ) so sweet of my friend Ami  who offered me a piece of dark chocolate . few meters ahead met Prerna and Alpa they were shouting just run 7kms to go, run. At 38 km I met a friend Dinesh I wanted to run together but I told him to carry on and not to slow down for me.

Then the WALL HIT !! at 40 km, it sneaks up on you like a thief in the night. I wasn’t feeling pain, but my legs were starting to deflate, (but didn’t felt the same  during training run ) suddenly felt a kind of push from behind and it was Raj Vadgama sir  he told me don’t walk keep moving slowly, we are just reaching , it’s another 1.5 km to go and can be completed in 5hrs , come on keep moving he said to me. Thank you Raj sir for that push. Those last 6km I felt very humid with no shade that’s when I did biggest mistake consuming lots water which further slowed me down. At reaching the 41km mark suddenly I heard loud cheers from my friends from MRR cheering zone that boasted up my energy (thanks Yvette, Sam and Hemang), then my friend Hemang started pacing for that last 1km, I can’t thank him enough for that. He left at 100mts saying he will meet me later. Finally I reached the finish line with tears of joy in my eyes…….. And at last I said to myself, I’m a Marathoner !!!!

There was no target in mind as it was my first marathon and I wanted it to enjoy it fully, without any injury or tiredness left at the end of the run… I’m glad it happened the same also with an unexpected timing of 4.55.44 hrs of finish, what more I could ask for !!!  Amen.