It was slightly 2 hours past midnight when the VI( Visually Impaired) Girls were ready from their Hostel to participate in SPBM Marathon. It was for the first time in their life the Blind Runners felt that they were getting a New Vision in their Life. Once the VI runners reached the kanteerava stadium it was pitch dark and the girls felt like Welcome to the Low Vision Territory. But when they reached the tent for VI runners they felt a joy, a joy of comradarie and celebration of Low Vision friends.
I had the Privilege to Pace Renuka B Rajput 18 yr old with only 20% Vision and 80% Blind finishing FM in 6 Hrs 19 Min. The Brave Girl clocked 2 hrs 45 min @ 21 km point.
The Race started for the VI with Guide runners in tow and the girls felt an exploration of a new world with little vision but many possibilities. The VI girls and boys ran the marathon like amateurs guided by strong professionals of the running community as guide runners who not only motivated them emotionally but also keeping their physical form by their previous months practice, hydration, race pace and a strong mind to finish the task of finishing the marathon for a Win Win for VI and Guide Runners. While the first 21 km went off on a high by running smoothly the pain started in the second part of the race.
The VI runners were cajoled, inspired and persevere to finish with run walk concept.
With severe pain and cramps getting on Renuka and few other VI, after 30km they put up a fight to finish, the VI runners were telling the world that they don’t require pity but to treat them as equals and that they have it in them that they are no less than a normal human being. This spirit made the VI runners finish the race on a high and one could see tears running down their face on completion.
It was surprising to note that the brain behind the event Bhumika Patel literally known to the running community as a Very Strong Woman could no longer hold her emotions and tears were flowing like a water falls.
The VI runners, the guide runners and all the volunteers hugged each other in joy and a great satisfaction that a life goal was achieved. Photos followed and each VI were seen exhibiting their proud medals which was like gold to them. The sponsors had announced Rs 5000 in cash to each and every finisher. The finisher girls and boys knew they had written into history books by getting a chance to get into the Limca Book of Records shortly. A feasty breakfast was followed by many happy souls to get back to their dens with the following lines. ”
Special Thanks to Sudha who joined us after 21 km mark to support as a Team. Not to mention other volunteers and Guide runners who helped past 1 month. Last but not the least, the Lady behind the whole show was none other than Bhumika Patel who lost sleep past 1 month getting the whole show a success and in all probability an Entry into the Limca Book of Records. Bhumika Patel was aptly supported by her Running Team mates who make this run valuable and for a Cause. Thanks again on a Wonderful run Bhumika and for getting us all together under such a social cause for the benefit of society at large
The Stumbling blocks you may come across in life, which makes your going tough, can turn themselves into stepping stones, if you step high enough”
Blog: Bhadresh. S. (Guide Runner to Renuka)