Why You Should Run

One fine day, I was running by myself. It was a few weeks before
Barcamp Bangalore 5. I got an idea that I should talk about
a non-techie topic at Barcamp since I’ve been giving tech talks for
the past few years and I wanted a change of pace. I brainstormed many
ideas on the reason for the talk, what to say and how to explain, etc.
all during that one run.

Unfortunately I couldn’t attend BCB5. But I stored the notes in a safe
place. And when BCB6 was announced, I wanted to be sure to talk this
time around.

A few weeks back, Ramjee called me and
asked whether we can talk about running. I smiled and thought to
myself “Great minds think alike”. Or at least “Runners think alike”.

So I made a ppt and we landed at
Barcamp on Saturday morning. We had
never discussed the presentation. And we were going to give a session
on it. Truly unconference style.

Note: The slides below have been modified to make it useful for a web
audience. It has a lot more text now.

Barcamp crowds are very inquisitive and so we didn’t actually go past
half the slides, which is actually a good thing. Instead, we discussed
a wide range of things about running right from finding good places to
run to trouble with dogs.

In spite of the delays causing us to start at 12:45 (which means
almost lunch time) the discussion went on till 1:45 and 90% of the
30-40 odd crowd were present till the end. When we went to grab what
was left of lunch, lot of people asked us questions including how to
avoid knee pain (tip: it’s the shoes). Since questions are always
a good sign, I think it was a successful discussion.

We both still consider ourselves amateurs at running but at the end of
the day its an activity we like and Barcamp is a perfect platform to
talk about our passions.

Oh, and if you’re still not a believer, I’ll end with a quote:

Games require skill. Running requires endurance, character, pride,
physical strength, and mental toughness. Running is a test, not
a game. A test of faith, belief, will, and trust in ones self. So
hardcore that it needs a category all to itself to define the pain.
When game players criticize, it’s because they aren’t willing to
understand, not because they’re stronger. Running is more than
a sport; it’s a lifestyle. If you have to ask us why we run, you’ll
never understand, so just accept.

— Jessica Propst

Update: SlideShare decided to make it a Barcamp spotlight


The online slides has had 1274 views and 116 downloads as of this
writing (2008-05-04 Sun 10:04 PM).

16 thoughts on “Why You Should Run

  1. Missed your session at BCB but the slides are great and I have made up my mind to start running :D

  2. I have been running in the gym for a while and I have been thinking that I should do it outdoors. And then I chanced on this link in the barcamp mailing list. And after that I have discovered a whole lot of stuff about running in and around bangalore.

    I would like to join you guys next time for a run. When and where do you run on the weekends?

  3. @Lakshman, @Vikram : Thanks for the encouragement :)

    @Vaibhav : I guess if you really like something, you’ll evangelize it
    well :)

    @Jace :

    Nice slides.


    What did you use to make them?

    Err, Powerpoint. Were you expecting something else? :)

    And I really should start running too. When and where do you
    normally go?

    Ramjee and me usually run in the mornings (although off late we’re not
    regular) in Jayanagar. We don’t have a fixed path, we take random
    routes depending on our energy and interest.

    @Chintan, @Amit : Awesome! Great to hear that.

    @Niara : :) …. which Nike ad are you referring to?

    @Balaji : We’ve not been running on weekends, but as I mentioned
    above, Ramjee and me run in the weekday mornings together since we
    live close by. Email me if you’re interested to join :)

  4. Hey Swaroop,
    Nice slide.I miss my cricket and I think I should start running :) I visited Niara’s blog as well and she has said it all very well ….

    I missed all the fun at BCB and yes,congrats for going fulltime into your venture !!!!

    -Himanshu Sheth

  5. Nice post Swaroop. I agree running is good, but Bangalore doesn’t make me feel like running.

  6. Swaroop !!! This is fairly surprising –

    I too shed a tons and tons of flab with running , though i kept mine to the treadmill. That apart, it is impossible to discount the value of exercise.

    I do have to disagree on one point – I think its impossible to think of much else while running. Its mostly the goal of my run, which is in my mind.


  7. Quite relief to see your blogs apart from my work. I too agree of running. what ever you mentioned in your reply to one of the post, it’s true.

    But do you think running on a road is good for health. I just heard from one of my friend that it’s not a good practice. That’s why i gave a break:)

    What’s your opinion towards this?

  8. @Sujith There are always downsides to everything, but personally I haven’t faced any problem with running on roads. The pollution outside is far more dangerous. The killer drivers on the road is far more dangerous. Sitting and not exercising is far more dangerous. Sitting and eating junk food is far more dangerous.

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