Running in Mumbai

Marine Drive

This morning was cold. Cold enough that, aided by something I wanted to forget, I ran my fastest ever time for that particular route.

It was a short 23 min run, but I still managed to shave more than two minutes off the time I clocked up on the previous Monday. It’s funny how temperatures that are around 0 degrees can motivate you.

It all stood in stark contrast to my two holiday runs in Mumbai (Kolkata’s pollution quickly dissuaded me of putting my running shoes on in that city).

Considering you’re effectively running down wide pavements that sit alongside a dual carriage way, Marine Drive still manages to rank as one of the most picturesque places I’ve run.

What really struck me was how early people get up in Mumbai to exercise.

At home I’ll go for a run at 6.30am and maybe see 10 or 15 people the entire time I’m out.

On Marine Drive at that time I’d see 10 or 15 people every 10 or 15 metres – walking, running, stretching, chatting or just sitting on the sea wall watching the early morning world go by.

The other thing is that it’s still dark at that time, which just increases the otherworldly feel of travelling thousands of miles and going running.

The last day of the holiday, before doing some last minute packing, I went out, declined the hotel doorman’s offer of a taxi, and ran from Pizza On The Bay up to the aquarium and back.

The moon reflected on the Arabian Sea and I wove in and out of slower runners and walkers, listening to Santigold on my iPod.

Holiday running, though rare for me, is always nice. This was one of the nicest.

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