Shashikant Padave :: First Half Marathon

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Shashikant Padave is my ex-mate from Nation Cadet Corp who is currently Assistant Police Inspector with the Mumbai Police. He was the most respected cadet in the Republic Day Camp 1996 because despite his height being relatively shorter, he made it to the NCC marching contingent as Parade Commander beating some very strong contenders by his sheer hard work, discipline and determination. He has shown the same virtues holds good today 22nd Aug 2016 even after 20 years.

Jan 2016 he would stand true to any Mumbaikar’s image of a cop, flabby paunch hiding his belt buckle, he was around 104 kgs! That wasn’t helping his confidence and he stared dreading the prospect of difficult forties. He was lost in a routine of handling odd hour duties, stressful work, irregular eating patterns, relying on junk food for the slightest craving – basically a cop’s routine. He was meaning to run the city’s premier Standard Chartered Mumbai Marathon for the past two years and could not muster the courage to take the first step – training. He decided to change that and take action, he started doing morning jogs, running an average 6 kms per week. His friends urged him to participate in a 10K event on 20th Mar 2016 and he finished his first 10k race in 01:10 hrs. Theoretically that day he was a 2:33 HM candidate.

On 28th Mar 2016 he became an ExploRunner, began a systematic training program with the aim of completing his first ever Half Marathon in SCMM 2017. He flagged off his journey of transformation with a mileage of 15 kms on the first week. In the month of April the 21st Aug Mumbai Half Marathon was announced and Shashi decided that this will be his first HM. We met at the RDC 1996 reunion held on 21st – 22nd May in Lonavala. We took this opportunity to end his base training with a long run (with steep gradients) to Pawna Lake that Sunday morning – 24 kms. Throughout his training Shashi was highly motivated, disciplined and never lost sight of his target doing sub 2:10. We did a time trial on 31st July – Finished 10k in 57:40 mins!!

The day arrived, 21st Aug it was, I was guilty of a 5 mins late start however we both more than made up with a swift first half of the distance at sub 6 pace. We then took it easy for the next 5k and then took off at the 16 kms mark running with the 2:15 pacer until the last kilometer. I was happy to see no discomfort throughout the race, sign of Shashi’s dedicated hard work over the past six months or so. As we reached the final 300 mts Shashi calls out “Munir let’s go!” sprinting to the finish line.

02:11:52 – such a fabulous achievement for a first time half marathoner! And BTW Shashi is only 89 kgs now and this is just the beginning…

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