"something within me kept me going"

I have always considered that a marathon is like life. The experiences we go through while running a marathon reflect what we encounter in life; its up and downs and the fact that at the beginning we can never tell what the end is going to be like. As in life, we need lots and lots of help from everything, not only outer but also inner and we need our entire being to work at the challenge

In life it is advantageous to have someone who you can look to for guidance, protection and inspiration. So what about the marathon? The Self Transcendence Marathon on 25th August 2004 was my third marathon. During it I could really feel guidance, protection and immense inspiration from everything.   From nature's beauty, people's support and the very presence of Sri Chinmoy, which surcharged the whole course with light and energy.

My training for the marathon this year was pretty poor. In June, I could not run a mile without stopping! So being rather desperate, I adopted Ongkar's suggestion to run for 2 minutes and walk for 1 minute during training, and then follow that practise in the marathon itself. If the ratio of 2 to 1 became too easy then up it to 3 to 1. So I did three long runs of 3min. run and 1min. walk prior to the marathon.

On the day of the marathon, I had planned to run 4min. and walk 1min. When the day arrived, quite frankly, I wasn't sure whether I could run a marathon, it all seemed unreal. But something within me kept me going. It was not just a case of my body going through a long and difficult ordeal, my heart was running the entire race too and my vital and mind was clam and focused. Whenever I got into difficulty, I chanted 'Supreme' and the result was remarkable.

I did a P.B. of 4.51 and with the walking breaks, I felt pretty strong throughout the entire race, I could feel a constantly recharging inspiration, vibrant light and energy from all corners of the course. I am grateful for this experience. It was a heart victory and I offer the experience and result at the Feet of Our Lord Supreme.

If we approach life with our focused and harmonised self, everything is possible. Such as running a marathon!

Hemabha Jang