Journey of Conquer 500 !!


As Engagement model( Say, Stay and Strive ) says “Getting ENGAGED” to our goal is important to be successful. I was able to accomplish my goal as I was Engaged with it, in other words was passionate about my plan. I adopted the philosophy of 3S by,

  • Talking positive things(SAY) about my plan, encouraging others to take up something similar thereby creating a healthy, positive and competitive environment to deliver and finally sharing plan and progress with friends thereby getting myself accountable to deliver..
  • Intense desire to reach my goal(STAY) and
  • Exert extra effort and engage in behaviors that contribute to success(STRIVE).

Planning phase – Got to admit, The thought of 500 miles did scare me initially as this was the journey which I hadn’t taken in the past and knew that both mind and body got to work together to reach the goal. As much as mind wanted to do it, body vigorously tried to veto it !! .However mind didn’t give up and successfully persuaded the body to team up, giving me the necessary courage to commit to my plan. I decided to use Nike plus app on my iPhone as the tool to record my activities but had to switch to run keeper for a while due to user experience issues. Should have evaluated the tool prior to use…

Lesson 1 – Important to make sure that the RESOURCES are onboard with the plan.

Execution Phase – Once the plan was put in place, It was time to execute now. The journey started on 11th Oct,2011 and had a good start by accumulating around 100 miles by end of Dec. Unfortunately I couldn’t keep that run rate for the next quarter(Jan-mar) due to other commitments and barely added another 64 miles. The following quarter ( Apr-June) was much better and managed to put behind another 107 miles taking the cumulative distance to 270 miles in nine months at an average of 30 miles / month which was below the planned run rate to reach the target. I had built up a backlog of around 100 miles and the revised run rate was whooping 75 miles per month for next three months !! It was indeed a challenge to scale up from 30 miles to 75 miles a month. I looked at my past data and noticed that I wasn’t consistent enough in my schedule. I brought some discipline to my schedule and managed to run around 20 miles per week and few long distance runs helped too. However summer is always a busy period with outings and other commitments and to add to that I got busy with tennis as well which started jeopardizing my running plan, however I stick to my plan and successfully reached the target on time. The period from July to Oct was the most productive one as I covered around 230 miles at an average of 75 miles/month, Just as planned.  

2011 snapshot


2012 snapshot

2012 – Run keeper snapshot

Lesson 2 – Be Agile and ready to accept changes to original plan, if needed. Keep the big picture in mind.

Reporting/Governance – I started off with Nike plus,switched to Run keeper and again came back to Nike plus. I had not used these tools before and was experiencing it during the execution phase which isn’t a good idea as my data now resides in two places. However I have decided to go with Nike plus app for 2013.I used social media effectively to report my progress and should say I was lucky to get tons of support and cheers from friends and family throughout the year. This certainly got me going. Big thanks to all.

Nike plus 2011 : 101 miles

Nike plus 2012 : 234 miles

Run keeper 2012 : 167 miles

Total – 502 miles

Quick tips –

1. Stay focussed.Let the BIG picture(number) not scare you. Always keep it in the back of your mind and focus on short-term interim goals.

2. Get engaged with your goal

3. Plan well before you commit. Once committed make sure that you do it.

4. Don’t pause/stop while you run, rather try to keep running even though you cut down on your speed. When you stop, the momentum will be lost and will find it hard to start again.

5. When you begin a run, you should feel neither starved nor stuffed.

6. Try newer routes as may help to break the monotony.

7. Biggest motivation – More you run, More you get to eat without worrying about calories !!!

Plan for 2013

I thoroughly enjoyed my 1st edition of conquer 500 and have decided to conquer another 500 miles in 2013.I feel much more upbeat about the target now and will get started from the month of January, also plan to take part in few marathons this year. 

If any of you are interested and have a goal in mind, you know what to do – SAY,STAY and STRIVE. Good luck.


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