I usually put the map last in my posts, but this one makes me so proud that I have to lead with it.
Although the route is call the Tughlaqabad 20 Miler, I didn't run all twenty miles. I did run 18 though, and it's the longest run I've ever done. Thanks to Ted for the donation and thanks to Ted and Bernie for sticking with me for the whole distance. Adam and Keir came with too, which helped a lot.
I owe a lot to you guys, so without getting too gushy, I just want to say thanks for everything you do for me. I appreciate it.
There were some definite highlights to this run. First of all, the distance. Running 18 miles is tough, but super rewarding. The finish point was an absolute highlight, but I'll talk more about that later.
The first highlight happened just before Mile 4. We were running through a narrow lane when we maybe inadvertently started a "stampede." If you've read my blog for a while you know that we have our fair share of cows in Delhi. Usually they are present, but not a real nuisance and certainly not dangerous. Last Saturday, I was afraid of them for the first time. As we were running past a group of 2 or 3 cows, one got spooked and started running. The other joined and suddenly we were leading the Running of the Bulls in reverse. Not sure what to do, we kept running. A few more cows joined the others and a full-on stampede was happening. At one point, I'm pretty sure one cow decided to take the narrowest path possible and squeezed between a car and the wall. Maybe a rearview mirror was broken. Nobody knows for sure.
The next highlight was a subterranean pedestrian underpass! We crossed under the Ring Road and ended up in a really nice neighborhood. I think we made a wrong turn in there somewhere, but it wasn't too bad.
I can't remember exactly when my next highlight happened, but I think it was around here somewhere. I was the frontrunner, so everyone behind me got a great view of me getting punched in the face. Well, not punched exactly, but as I ran past a bus stop, a guy with his back to me took a big stretch and released just as I passed him. I took a fist right in the face. Unfazed, I ran on while all of my "support team" had a good laugh.
The next stretch took us through a major slum colony, Kalkaji. From there, we left the packed urban landscape and almost immediately hit a dirt road and forest scrub. A quick consult of the map and a question or two to the local chai wallah and we were off to Tughlaqabad Fort. The contrast of the density of the slum and the seemingly countryside environment was crazy. We avoided a few hogs that were cavorting in the mud and the fort was in full view. A short dogleg took us around back into another neighborhood where another highlight of the run happened. A guy chilling on his front stoop talking to his buddies saw us run by and said, "Oh my god. There's the entertainment for the day." I've often wondered what people think of us when we come marauding through these neighborhoods and now I know what at least one thought. OMG.
As we worked our way around the Fort, I knew we had an ugly stretch ahead of us. We had a little less than 2 miles on fairly busy, open roads. Although we started at 5:30am to try to stave off the heat of the day, it was getting hot. Like 100 degrees hot.
As soon as we peeled off Guru Ravidas Marg into the Jahanpanah City Forest, the temperature dropped about 15 degrees. It was amazing and a welcome break. The 12 mile mark of the run was in the forest and I was again surprised by one of Delhi's green spaces. It was amazing. Very well-maintained spaces and trails. And we saw traces of one of Delhi's running hashes! There was shreddie along the trail. On on! We really took our time in the park. We were averaging about 9 minute miles over the course of the entire run, but one of our miles in the park was 11 minutes! We actually got passed by an ancient guy that was walking!
Recharged, we set out for the last 6 miles. These were mostly a blur for me. I might have even blacked out for a while. It had been 2 full weeks since my last big run and I was dogging it.
The last highlight came at Mile 18 as we stopped two miles short of home and got into an autorickshaw for a breezy ride home. Awesome.
Thanks again for the run guys, you're champions!
This run belongs to Ted!
I'm dedicating runs to raise money for a campship in memory of our friend Ty Taylor at YMCA Camp Miller. Click here or here to donate. Please make sure you choose the Ty Taylor Campship option. And please let me know if you've made a donation so I can thank you!
Distance - 18.36 miles!
Time - 2 hours 43 minutes 36 seconds. Are you kidding me?
Soundtrack - A special playlist created from track #18 songs from various albums
|Kicked Out The House||De La Soul||18 of 27|
|Flipside (BBC Session)||The Breeders||18|
|Invisible Man (Demo)||The Breeders||18|
|Soul Plan||Tom Caruana||18|
|Brand New||Beastie Boys||18 of 28|
|Intergalactic||Beastie Boys||18 of 19|
|Push, Make it Work||Princess Superstar||18 of 25|
|Big Dogs||Method Man & Redman||18 of 19|
|Blue Flowers Revisited||Dr. Octagon||18 of 20|
|Staying Alive||Wyclef Jean||18 of 24|
|Batman & Robin||Snoop Dogg||18 of 20|
|Project Talk||RZA||18 of 21|
|War At 33 1/3||Public Enemy||18 of 20|
|Final Interlude||Pras||18 of 18|
|My Favorite Things||Outkast||18 of 21|
|Melody Mix||Oh No||18 of 36|
|Ms. Wallace (Outro)||The Notorious B.I.G.||18 of 18|
|Eye Featuring Stacy Epps||Madvillain||18 of 22|
|Through the Wire||Kanye West||18 of 20|
|'Till I Collapse||Eminem||18 of 20|
|The Actuators||Antipop Consortium||18 of 19|
|Something Big||Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers||18 of 21|
|Video Killed the Radio Star (Live)||Ben Folds Five||18 of 20|
|The Man Who Sold The World||David Bowie||18 of 20|
|Something In The Air||Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers||18 of 18|
|This Must Be The Place (Naive Melody)||Talking Heads||18 of 18|
|The Transaction||The Sea and the Cake||18 of 23|
|Hit Me With Your Best Shot||Pat Benetar||18|
|I Hate You [demo]||The Monks||18 of 19|
|Skin Trade||Duran Duran||18 of 19|
|The drugs don't work (live 2001)||Ben Harper||18 of 25|
|Short on ideas||Less Than Jake||18 of 19|
|Who Holds The Power Ring-||Less Than Jake||18|
|Are u Just Scared||Big D & the Kids Table||18|
|The Dilemma||BS 2000||18 of 22|
|Vuelve||Edwin Rivera||18 of 18|
|Track 18||Café Tacuba||18 of 18|
|Indocumentados (Instrumental)||Akwid||18 of 19|
|Aldemaro En Su Camaro||Los Amigos Invisibles||18 of 19|
|Tema Del Zurdo||Kevin Johansen||18 of 19|
|Medley:||Gipsy Kings||18 of 18|
|Desde La Prisión||Akwid||18 of 19|
|Us (Live In London)||Regina Spektor||18 of 22|
|Banana Co||Radiohead||18 of 21|