Saturday, June 30, 2007

Ultimate Frisbee - Ultimate Exhaustion

The Chennai Ultimate Frisbee gang had a fantastic morning on the sands at Besant Nagar beach. 13 enthusiasts had turned up for this game.
I wore the heart rate monitor during this game - Some stats from the gadget.
Duration of the game - 56.30 minutes
Average heart rate - 188 beats per min!!
Highest rate touched - 202 beats per min!!
The avg heart rate during a long run has never exceeded 170 BPM for me. Thats a clear indication of how tiring the game of Ultimate frisbee can be.
It also gives an ultimate high, in the end!!
P.S. Whatever calories that was lost during the game, was made up [ even loaded more] at the Murugan Idli Kadai, after the game !!

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

You know you have a running problem when...

Running buddy Shumit has a post here about the criterion for "running problem". Here are mine, for an entry into the club!!
  • Wake up at 4:15 AM every Sunday morning.
  • You look out specifically for runners' blogs
  • You think the only shoe worth buying for you is a running shoe
  • Drag a pal along to hunt for "The Complete Book of Running" by James Fixx all evening and night on the streets of London. [ This is after a long hunt in Chennai and repeated phone calls to the big book stores]
  • You buy choclate bars, only to have them before the early morning run
  • Download podcasts to listen to during the runs
  • The first thing you pack in your travel bag is the running shoe
  • You pull all your pals into running every week
  • Most of the e-mails in your inbox are about running
  • You stopped drinking on saturday nights because of the sunday morning runs
  • You think the "highest high" is listening to "High Hopes" by Pink Floyd after you hit the 1 hour mark, running
  • Wake up at 5:30 AM on a Sunday morning and feel miserable, since the run started at 4:50 am.
  • You think a heart rate monitor is one of the coolest gadgets!
  • You think running is a life changing experience

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Imagination to see beyond..

"The walls between art and engineering exists only in the minds " - Theo Jansen

To know more about what this means, take a look at the video.
[Via Vishnu]

Sunday, June 24, 2007

'Last Mile' Problem?

Travelling right now.
Saturday night, Cochin to Coimbatore Trip Stats
Rs 180 - For the bus ride [190+ km ride] from MG Road Cochin to Gandhipuram,Coimbatore [ Conti Travels, Non-AC with push-back seats]
Rs 150 - For the 3 km ride to the bus boarding point at Cochin [ 11:45 PM, Ambassador taxi]
Rs 100 - For the 5 km ride from the alighting point to home [ 4:45 AM, Auto]
Thats a real "last mile" problem!

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Happy News!

Am happy and quite thrilled to share this news - Got the first client for my company and started on a "pilot" project for them. Just a very minor step in the long journey ahead. More focus and more work, now on! Last 3 months, since i quit my job, have been one of the best learnings i've ever had.
Some day, i hope to blog about the experience! For now.. work beckons!

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Lance Armstrong!

Am reading his book "Every Second Counts" for the 3rd time in a year, now. Read his other book "Its not about the bike - My journey back to life" , cover to cover, sitting all day and night.

He made me buy a cycle! Need i say more.

He inspired me to cycle to office. He inspired me to cycle from Bangalore to Chennai ! He still inspires me to cycle every single day.

I thank him for all of those, the lines below and more..

"I want to die at a hundred years old with an American flag on my back and the star of Texas on my helmet, after screaming down an Alpine descent on a bicycle at 75 miles per hour. I want to cross one last finish line as my stud wife and my ten childrenapplaud and then i want to lie down in a field of those famous French sunflowers and gracefully expire, the perfect contradictions to my once-anticipated poignant early demise."

"An athelete doesn't particularly want a past; that means he is done. He only wants a present and a future"
I strongly recommend you guys to read his book, if you haven't already.

Ultimate Frisbee in Chennai

Trust me, i got the chance to do just that today morning!

Played the Ultimate Frisbee game with the chennai ultimate frisbee gang, starting at 5:30 am at the besant nagar beach. Fell in love with the game.
Rules of the game suits my idea of sports
  • Team sport
  • Co-ordination with team mates
  • Makes players think on the feet
  • Intense physical exertion
  • Team bonding

Since we played on the beach, got the opportunity to do some fancy diving. One of my team mates [karthik] smartly threw the frisbee towards the base line, giving the fribee the right amount of time to float in the air. I ran towards it, the frisbee enticing me and its float kept me interested in the chase. Kept running and just when it was about to hit the ground, i leapt forward [unconsciously], the instinct to catch the frisbee before it fell on the sands leading me and with my outstretched body and the hands, managed to hold on to the frisbee. Ultimate exhilaration!!

Though my team [ Sundar, Bhargav and Me] lost to [Manu, Sid and Anba], we really had an awesome time. Sweat it all out, pushed ourselves to the hilt and the 30 min game was a lot of fun.

If you are keen to play, you are welcome. Please go here or call me - 9884217276. We play on the saturdays , starting at 5:20 am.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Chennai Runners on The Hindu

Yes, The Hindu had the Chennai Runners covered in the page 2 of the chennai edition. The reporter and the photograher had come to Anna University, to meet with us. Thanks to Vani [who wrote the article] and the photograher [ A senior person at The Hindu], for landing at Anna University despite the early Sunday morning and the pleasures that go with it.
Below is the "mock" run we had, for the photo session! [Thanks to Ravi for sharing this photo] [From left to right - Photograher [partially seen], Sundar, me, Ravi [behind], Hari, Karthik, Senthil, Shahid, Ram, Anba and Jagan.

Here is a snapshot of The Hindu online edition where Chennai Runners is featured

The good bit about featuring on The Hindu is the spreading of awareness about the group. We had almost 40 new members joining the mailing group today. Hope to run with more new members. The group is at 125 members and growing!

If you want to join, please go to

Friday, June 08, 2007

Idea # 2 - "Personalised" Restaurant

I'm in love with anything that is "Customised" or "Personalised" or "Tailored" to individual needs. This idea stems from that.

A restaurant that has a face recognition system at the main door - Recognises the person entering in [ not for first timers], alerts the doorman/waiter/manager about their preferred table location [ smoking/non-smoking, quiet corner ]. With information from previous visits, we can get their preference for drinks, short eats etc [ When the waiter greets you by name, asks if you want your fav drink, i wonder how many would refuse. Also, would love to see the surprised smile on the guests' face].

The waiter will have a PDA [ which arms him with the guests' preference for drinks/cuisine etc]. Imagine the guest asking for a pasta dish and the waiter suggesting that you had the same dish last time you came and offers a new dish to try out.
This restaurant will never be crowded and will have enough space for every group of guests, to have their own unique experience. It will also be a "green" restaurant, with usage of recylable materials and effective utilisation of "waste".
I would go around the dining area and greet every single guest, ask them about their experience and have a conversation and make them feel at home!
Oh yeah - If only, i dont have to make money out of this restaurant!! I wish.....

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Big Race!

3,166,414 sq. km
500,000 villages approximately
1000 bucks per person
28 states
15 days
10 destinations
2 per team
1 race

Are You Game?
Very tempting to go on this one. Would love to beg the lorry guys for a "lift", eat at places where dosa would cost Rs.2 , sleep in "Koil Mandapam" , bathe in the river... Man, i want to do this!
Starts on June 10th. Decision to join can still be made on 9th!!

Monday, June 04, 2007

Quote to Charge Us Up!

Came across this one in a running group mailing list

"If you are not living on the edge, you are just wasting space"

Running Route - Sunday Morning Run

This is the route we follow for the Chennai Runners' Classic Route run, every sunday morning [starting at 5 am]. We start near Sony World on the C.P.Ramaswamy Road and do a distance of about 16 km, on this route. [Sometimes we run into and out of the scenic IIT campus to do a total distance of 20 km +]. Thanks to Ram for the google earth links [got from his Garmin toy].


Friday morning [ 3 days ago], woke up at 5:30 am for an hour long cycle ride. To my dismay, the rear wheel has lost pressure and at this hour, i sure cannot expect the neighbourhood cycle shop to be open. I bid the time away and at 6:15 am, the shop opens [ Yay!!]. I check my wallet and realise i don't have "change". Tyre topping up costs Rs.1 per tyre . But the wallet topping the previous night left me with 5 hundred rupee notes!
The fun begins now.
Me : Boss, i don't have "change" with me now. I got a Rs.100 note with me . And at 6:15 am, all the other shop guys are fast asleep, for me to get "change" from them. Can i give you the Rs.2 at 8 am?
Cycle Shop Guy : No, in that case, tyre inflation cannot be done.
Me : Boss, you know me very well. I come here every alternate day for a top-up. [ Having a sports bike is a pain - you need to top up the type pressure every alternate day for peak cycle performance]
Cycle Shop Guy : Sorry sir. Not possible. Get me the Rs.2 right now or your tyres don't get topped-up.
Me : [ In real frustration, just thinking to myself that i should either get a new "foot pump" or find a new cycle repair shop, to help filling up air]
I then parked the bike in my flat and decided to go for a run, instead of the planned cycle ride. Many thoughts went through my head, as i ran around the boat club area -
  • Is my relationship with that cycle shop guy, bad? - Afterall, i go to him every alternate day and share stories of my cycling trips with him and we are quite friendly.
  • Is he the worst business man? - He just antagonised a regular customer. I go to him so regularly, that i would surely pay the Rs.2 , next time i go there.
  • Am going to get a new foot pump from the sports store! I was so tempted to go ahead and get the pump, that day itself

These thoughts were slowly laid to rest and as i reach my home , i wanted to go back to the shop to inflate the tyres [ With the intention of actually letting him know that he should've trusted me earlier in the morning].

I go there with a bunch of Rs.2 coins and park the cycle in front of the shop. I take the Rs.2 coin, trust it in the guy's hands and i ask him to inflate the tyres. He does the job and asks me to check the tyres for "correct" inflation ! I cycle around the place and give him a "Thumbs up".

He then comes to me and says this " Sir, Saaarrie sir. You were the "first customer" when you came at 6:15 am. And i didnt want start the day off by giving "credit" to someone. I believe, if i did that, then the outlook for the rest of the day would be similar"! [Motal customerkku "kadan" kodutha, naal fulla kadan thaaan sir]

I just laughed at that and cycled away...

Friday, June 01, 2007

Sports Story # 1 - The man who went from 0 to 21.1 km in 7 weeks!

Yes you heard it right! Here is the story of Ravi [ of Chennai Runners] who went from 0 to 21.1 km in 7 weeks! If he can... so can you!!
I first met Ravi at one of the "long" sunday runs - 17 km!! I was running [mostly walking/crawling] and finished last!! Ravi jokingly said i should get quicker! [That kind of made me "serious" about the next run]. The group did a 10 km run 2 weeks ago and this time i didnt want to "lose" to Ravi. I was ahead of him for most part of the run , but i started walking at 9.8km! and he took over!! That was "killing" really!! I managed to run that far only because i could "hear" Ravi breathe! He pushed me to exhaustion! [and exhaustion is a high too!!]

[little did i know then, that Ravi was just starting on the big runs!! - while i claim to have been training for long distance for almost 2 years now!]

He gave me serious competition that day at the 10 k run! And the following Sunday, he "kicked" me in the 20 km run! Again i was ahead most part of the run and he took over near the end! and we decided to enter into a bet at the blore midnight run! The winner treats the one finishing behind to a breakfast and the winner will get a round of beer!

And this time, i didnt want to lose. After the "painful" loss, i somehow wanted to finish ahead of Ravi! Which did happen... finally, at the Bangalore Midnight Marathon.

Am sure Ravi is waiting to "get at me" at the next run!

This for me, is the essence of running with the group! Each of us help the others push limits!!
What are you waiting for....