Prita’s tyrst with destiny

Sanjay Jadhav
Thursday, 9 May 2019

Pregnancy forced her to miss out on 2018 London Marathon, but she makes it in 2019

PUNE: If you thought running a 42.2 km long marathon was a great task and the ultimate test of one’s fitness, think about having to gain those extreme levels of fitness to be able to do it merely eight months after becoming mother for the first time.

Pune’s Prita Yadav earned the distinction of doing exactly that when she participated in 2019 London Marathon last month, crossing the finish line in 5hr 27 min 44 sec.

“Just when I was about to register for 2018 London Marathon, I learnt that I was 6 weeks pregnant. I may hav been one of those few pregnant  women  who throughout the pregnancy  kept thinking only about the London marathon finish line,”Prita told Sakal Times.

“I still remember in the labour room when the doctor confirmed about emergency, C section,  at the back of my mind I had a thought for a fleeting second that I won’t be able to run the marathon now.  I was overjoyed when TCS gave me an entry for the 2019 edition again but I was not sure if I could run 42.2 kilometres then,” said Prita.

She was struggling to jog even two kilometres but her coach convinced  her to enter the marathon. “And I am so glad I did.”

“I felt like a total beginner when we started training. My pace was very slow thanks to all the pregnancy weight I had put on. I still remember my first long run on a Sunday which was 8 kilometres. I was exhausted  and my abdominal  muscles were aching for almost two days. (I made sure I got clearance from my gynaecologist before I started training) and I spoke to my coach Kaustubh Radkar and he told me only two words ‘be patient’,” is how Prita described her preparations.

“From thereon, the training gained momentum, but long runs in the heat was a challenge  again. Also having resumed work in March, life became very hectic.” 

“But Kaustubh’s perfect training plan helped me a lot during training. Also my husband and mother-in-law were supportive and took care of the baby. The training wouldn’t have been possible without them,” Prita said.

“Running in London was an  amazing experience. The crowd support was incredible and so was the entire route,” Prita said.

“The biggest challenge was the weather. It was cold and cloudy and the fear of rain was threatening throughout the run. I wore an old pullover till my start time and then threw it post one kilometre, hoping it wouldn’t be too windy in the second half of the run as predicted, but luckily it stayed cold.”

“I was very comfortable and confident till 28 kilometres. In my head I knew that I had trained 30 kilometres, post which the body would slowly start giving up, but I kept reminding myself that it was only the last 4-km left.”

Prita has got an entry for the Berlin Marathon 2019, but “it looks very difficult finance-wise. I took a big personal loan for Chicago and London marathons and now my salary goes only in paying the EMI. If nothing works out, I will cancel this year’s entry.”

New York 2016 (5 hrs 24 mins) 
Chicago 2017 (4 hrs 33 mins) 
London  Marathon (5 hrs 27 mins)

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