About a year back, at a time when I was new to marathons I came across Runbhoomi, read about its specialty and quickly signed up for it. Some of us like to trek and a lot of us like to run, in a trail run we get to do both at the same time. While there might be other trail runs out there, the hospitality and the theme of this race makes it a unique experience for all.
We reached Mandangad after a rickety ride on a local bus, which we found with great difficulty in Pune. We were completely exhausted from our journey and weren’t sure if we would turn up for the run in the morning. Once we got there around 10pm it felt like 2am since the bus stop was all isolated. We went begging around for a phone since we couldn’t receive signal. The crew was kind enough to pick us up and help us reach to the base camp.
Our hungry stomachs got to relish the smoking hot barbecue and dinner that was served few minutes after we reached. Thanks to the good food we were all pumped up for our run the next day. We then relaxed while watching the musical performances and then dozed off to sleep in our tents.
The run started after a light breakfast and warm up. The first part of the trail was a muddy road which then led us to a forest. After that was grassy patch that probably went through a farm. I managed to slip thrice on the way, but I brushed the dirt off my shoulders (literally) and moved on. There were beautiful sceneries and waterfalls in between. The last part was the toughest of all, it was a steep patch that almost got me frozen. I took a while to gain my confidence and run again once the patch got wider. Once I reached the end, I was told I came first (among women), I couldn’t be happier.
I know I might not be the right one to say that participation is winning, but it is true. Its as good as trekking but without a bag pack. You get to choose the pace at which you want to move, or check your resistance while you go uphill, or exercise control while you go downhill. At the same time you can let go all your worries and just completely enjoy nature at its best.
The entire experience of Runbhoomi gave me a quick break from my hectic schedule at the time and brought me calmness and peace like never before. Hoping you all who participate this year at Lonavala will experience the same. Keep fit and enjoy nature.