it is more than just 26.2 miles


Finally, I conquered the legendary ‘heartbreak hill’ at Boston Marathon!

The day arrived and I was in Boston on 17th April …  you can feel the enthusiasm in the air … the hotel was buzzing with Boston Marathon contestants from all over the globe.

When I heard several participants are stuck in Europe (because of the ‘global gridlock’ caused as a result of the recent volcanic eruption in Iceland), I realized how important is the grace of the almighty from all aspects.

Seeing the video of the whole course of the marathon (at the expo on 18th April) did bring up some fears in small little corner of my heart – will I be able to make it? (after it was my first ever marathon run – and i did not get chance to prepare as much as i would have loved to) … the visualization of the FINISH line (through the video) did bring some tears as well.

Woke up the next morning and the weather was just right for the run … I was feeling I was in the best possible shape for this … Walked about a mile to reach the point of pickup from where the school buses ‘transported’ about 25k+ participants to the START line … Many were finding the weather little chilly … Had to wait for some considerable time (out in the open & early in the morning) before we could get on the buses (but imagine the organization that goes behind the mammoth task) … Enjoyed the bus ride (of about 30-40 minutes) and relaxed as much as possible

On reaching the starting point (athlete’s village), I had enough time to freshen up, get in the running attire and store the things in the baggage area before the Wave 2 (in which I was supposed to start) officially begin to RUN at 10:30 am.

While waiting, borrowed a marker from someone at the last minute and wrote my name on my t-shirt and INDIA on my right shoulder — this really turned out to be a wonderful thing to do. This thing got thousands of spectators to cheer me saying ‘Go HARSH Go’ or ‘Go INDIA Go’ all throughout the course … I was really ‘touched’ (Even literally, oh so many people touched me and i touched so many people on the whole route)

How can I not mention the ‘scream tunnel’ formed by the Wellesley college girls with ‘Kiss me’ placards in their hands – did I kiss anyone? Yes and No – with FINISH line (and my wife) in my mind – I settled with flying kisses … (and later looking at the ‘timing’ that I achieved, I was glad I did not ‘indulge’ – otherwise I might have missed my personal deadline of 6 hours)

27539 Thakkar, Harsh H.   M     CANADA INDIA  
Checkpoints 5k 10k 15k 20k Half 25k 30k 35k 40k
0:27:32 0:56:54 1:28:59 2:12:06 2:20:48 2:58:41 3:57:02 4:46:31 5:35:53
Finish Pace Projected Time Official Time Overall Gender Division
0:13:32   5:54:22 22434 13022 4636

Boston people were really amazing – I was exhausted at couple of places and I do feel i might not have reached the FINISH line without there never ending support. Thank YOU – Boston, Everyone & ALMIGHTY 🙂

[If you are interested, keep watching – I plan to share more here]

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21 Responses to “it is more than just 26.2 miles”

  1. Kannan Janakiraman Says:

    Hurricane Harsh ! Wow ! What a feat! If these written words are themselves so inspiring, it must have been much more exhausting and satisfying to you. Congratulations and wishes for you to conquer more places…

    Cheers
    Kannan

  2. Smita Says:

    Fantastic! I am proud of you Harsh!

  3. Dhiraj Says:

    Harsh,

    Congrats!

    Your post is pretty amusing! One question, how long do your kisses last? You beat your goal by more than 5 minutes – surely you could have indulged? 😉

    So any more marathons planned next few years? How about coming down here to NYC?

  4. Veeramani Says:

    What a wonderful post -truly inspiring. Congratations !! It is every marathoner (incl. me) to run the Boston in his/her lifetime.
    Wishing you all the very best for future marathons and ultra marathons.
    Best of Luck !!
    rgds,
    Veera

  5. Haider Says:

    This is a great achievement.

    Feels like Mumbai Indians winning the IPL-2010, though they have yet to play the final.

    Go Harsh Go…. Go India Go….

    All the best.

  6. vaibhav Says:

    Awesome! I must say that you are a one-bone stud! Congratulations for creating a treasure of life time memories.

  7. Ram Parhi Says:

    Dear Harsh,
    You make us all very proud…so much enthu and so full of life man…great going and congratulations..share more when you can…

    Ram

  8. Navin Says:

    Great stuff Harsh. Congratulations. You just ran & enjoyed the most prestigious marathon in the world for your maiden run. Can’t ask for a better start. Awesome!

  9. Rahul Says:

    Congrats man
    Great Job!!

  10. Praveen P Says:

    Harsh, Congratulations and wishing you more success to come. Praveen.

  11. Harsh D Thakkar Says:

    Dear Harsh, Heartiest congratulations onachieveing your Goal – to run First Marathon, an international Marathon and that too the most prestigeous Marathon. It was your determination, pull from the cheering Boston crowd along the route, strength of Deesha’s love, God’s blessings and your visualization to cross the Finish line before you started. Rita nd I are so proud of your success and feel a special pride that your are one of the two runners of Indian origin. Above all, you planted seeds in my mind that some day with the Grace of God this Harsh will join you in a Marathon run…..keep running my friend’ it will continue stretching you to your full potential. Harsh & Rita Thakkar

  12. Arvind Says:

    Harshbhai … awesome job buddy! You make us proud.

    After conquering Indian hearts you have gone to conquer them globally. Globalization is what you epitomize in the true sense.

    Indulging in the kissing tunnel wouldn’t have impacted the timeline much but added to the experience holisticaly 🙂

    Truly inspirational … Go Harsh go …

    Cheers
    -Arvind

  13. Tweets that mention it is more than just 26.2 miles « unique ideas! -- Topsy.com Says:

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by harshthakkar. harshthakkar said: Conquered Boston Marathon! – https://uniqideas.wordpress.com/2010/04/19/it-is-more-than-just-26-2-miles […]

  14. Prashant Says:

    Congrats!

  15. Arun Maheshwari Says:

    Dear Harsh,
    Fantastic achevement. I do not know anybody else who has achieved this feat. Congratulations.
    What does this mean? It means that you have an ability to set lofty goals and have the patience, persistence and drive to keep working hard until you achieve your goals.
    Your achievement may not seem to have any connection with your job or job related capabilities but if I was your manager, I would interpret it to mean that in addition to the technical skills, etc. that obviously every good employee posseses, you have capabilities to strive and achive for extraordinary results.
    You should be proud of yourself for your achievement. Congratulations again and be confident that you will achieve whatever you set your mind to achieve.

  16. krishnam Says:

    run Forest run ……

  17. Jignesh C Patel Says:

    Dear Harsh,

    Congrates bhai congrates!!

    Someone said….”Adag man na manvi ne pahado nadata nathi” (Even mountains can not stop to a determind person) and you are truly a man with full of determination and hard work!

    …keep running!!
    Cheers!

    Jay Swaminarayan

  18. Amit aneja Says:

    Congrats Harsh,

    In the words of Richard Bach “you are never given a dream without also being given the power to make it true”

    You had a dream and you had achieved that with your determination and perseverence. All the best for all your future endeavours. I am sure you are feeling proud to be Indian today!

  19. Surojit Says:

    Wow!
    I never knew you had such amazing capabilities.
    Really you did your country proud.

  20. krish Says:

    Reading your blog after years, its so nice to see that you still keep doing marathons.

    Superb and Congrats.

  21. joe Says:

    How did you get a number?

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