Running- Business, Life & Marathons

Varun Shah at Tata Mumbai Marathon 2020

I am up at 4:30 am in the Morning. Having Breakfast, planning the route for my 5:30 am run. Planning what I wish to achieve from the day ahead. Of course, the time is such that my mind will focus only on Important and not Trivial things. I carry these things into my run and meditate over it for as long as the run lasts. By the time others are awake, I have almost 3-hour jump-start before them. I am ahead of everyone. Between 7:30 am and 11: 30 am, my mind is fresh from the run, responds immediately and has found solutions to most of these things. Rest of the day is spent in Meetings, Follow-Ups and Reviews and other Execution work.

Here is what I have learnt from Marathon Running:

Planning:

I thought I planned decently, until recently. Boy, I was so wrong!

A Long Marathon Training run needs you to plan:

Your Route: With sufficient elevation, favorable road surface, traffic conditions, fewer stray dogs (don’t want to get bitten by one of them)

Your Fuel: How much water to carry, how many gels to carry & when to consume them, at what kms will you pass the Banana vendor?

Your Distance & Pace: To ensure you run strong throughout & finish strong!

At Work, I have tried to spend much more time Planning before committing to any Deadline, before delegating any work, before setting expectations. Most importantly, Planning always keeping in mind, the Ultimate Goal. Still far from perfect, but a start nevertheless.

Competing with your Own Self:

It is very tempting to back yourself to win small things in life. Winning a Petty Argument, Winning against another Vendor, Proving someone wrong etc.

When you start aligning and chasing your Big Goal, you realize that many of these ‘Battles’ you made up in your mind, are not Battles after all, but just very obvious side-outcomes of achieving your Major Goal. So, why spend time and energy winning the small battles rather than preparing to achieve the Ultimate Goal? Battles will take care of themselves!

This comes from the zeal to achieve your Personal Best in a Marathon. Your only business is to be a better version of yourself. Don’t over complicate!

Health is the Biggest Competitive Advantage:

Skills, Attitude, Speed have no value if your Resources cannot maintain good Health. I am taking small steps to ensure everyone at Eccentric Engine works towards better Health. For Business Partners and Customer Catch Ups, I invite them to join me for a run, a walk; not just beers and drinks. Business Leaders today have the privilege of influencing a lot of Actions. Health is surely something we should all focus on.

Stretch

Dictionary Meaning: be capable of being made longer or wider without tearing or breaking.

Every run begins and ends with a stretch. It ensures you sustain those abnormally long runs.

Something to keep in mind for those long 15-hour days and very busy spells at work we all have to go through. It is actually possible to focus well, over long periods of work if you take care of yourself before and after them.

Connect with nature and like-minded people

You have the privilege of meeting people from all walks of life, business and experiences. There is so much to learn from people who have achieved so much in life, not letting their busy schedules come in way of their Health.

Everyone needs to have this 1 Activity which is impractical, Illogical and Irrational. I found mine in Running.

Eccentric Engine

Minds that connect Machines with Hearts.

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