From Runner to Marathoner: A Journey of Determination, Support, and Triumph

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Madhura Ambre

First Full marathon 42.2km done and dusted at Tata Mumbai Marathon (TMM) – “Anything is possible when you have the right people to support you.” I strongly believe in this quote because of the strong support of my family members, my running team, and the constant motivation from friends that helped me transition from a runner to a Marathoner.

My running journey started at the age of 36 in a small playground. Every morning at 7, I used to walk and run alone. Gradually, my confidence increased, and I registered for my first 5k event, and there was no turning back after that. My passion led me to join Team Runway. In the first year, I completed 5 half marathons, and a full marathon became my dream. However, I was scared to run such a long distance.


Then Covid struck, and I lost contact with my running group and moved to a new locality. I felt disconnected. One morning, while having breakfast with my daughter at a cafe, I unexpectedly spotted a group of people from my runway team. It was a moment of joy as I reunited with my running group after a gap of 3 years.

With the help of our coach, Aziz sir, Team Runway achieved many milestones. I also accomplished the Satara Hill Marathon (21km Hill run). After Satara, everyone was excited about TMM, but I was unsure if I would run it.

Against all Odds

One morning, my coach called my husband and convinced him of my capability. That’s when my dream journey began. I was happy and took my running schedule seriously, preparing for my first full marathon. In November, I completed my long run as per schedule, but the next day, something unexpected happened. I suddenly felt myself collapsing.

My heartbeat was too fast, and my hands and legs were not receiving proper blood supply. I was alone as my husband was out of town. I remember grabbing a lady’s hand and pleading with her to take me to the hospital. I gave her my phone password and asked her to contact my friends. At that moment, I thought I would never see my daughter again.

The episode lasted for two hours, but I survived. My friend, “Madhuri,” was with me and quickly shifted me to a larger hospital. There, we underwent various tests, but the doctors couldn’t diagnose the reason behind the incident.

The next day, I was discharged, but the incident had a profound impact on me mentally. For the following week, I experienced panic attacks. I lost confidence and became afraid of being alone at home or crossing the road. I made the decision not to run TMM. However, my daughter and father-in-law insisted that I should go for it.

In the first week of December, I sought a second opinion from a doctor who gave me the green signal to run. And so, I kick-started my running journey again. My coach assigned a pacer to me for TMM. With the help of the pacer, my coach, my running group, and my family, I completed my first full marathon. That day, I was filled with happiness, and tears of joy streamed down my face.

My running journey inspired those around me. Most of my neighbours and friends were housewives, occupied with household chores and rarely engaging in any cardio activities, not even walking. I convinced them to register for a 5k event, and together, we began training in the evenings after completing our housework. After a month, all of them successfully completed their first 5k run.

Beyond the Finish Line

I would like to express my heartfelt gratitude to some individuals who played a significant role in my journey:

#Aziz sir: Thank you, sir, for believing in my capacity every single time, for boosting my morale, and for keeping track of every run activity. Your dedication has led our runway team to new heights, and we continue to achieve new targets.

#Amit Ambre: You are my backbone. Without your support, none of this would have been possible. Running in major events means sacrificing weekends, social events, meeting relatives, and get-togethers, but you have been there, handling every situation and explaining my unavailability to everyone. Thank you for everything.

#Vikas Solanki: When my full marathon journey began, you guided me to develop strength and stamina, and your suggestions were invaluable in helping me achieve my goals. Thank you, Vikas.

#Yuvraj Balinge: You were my pacer in TMM. Thank you, Yuvraj, for making our run mentally easier, for keeping track of hydration throughout the run, diverting our minds, capturing photos, and creating wonderful memories of this full marathon journey.

I would also like to express my gratitude to my brothers, Raj Kadam and Sachin Kadam, and my sisters-in-law, Suvidha and Renu. Thank you to all my runway friends, the Kharadi gang, my besties, the ladies from Tridal Nagar, and my society friends. Your loving wishes and support have been instrumental in helping me achieve my dream target.

This is my story, a journey filled with determination, support, and triumph. Join me as we celebrate the power of running and the incredible transformations it can bring.

#FromRunnerToMarathoner #JourneyOfDetermination #SupportAndTriumph

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