Marinate before you grill

I remember the moment when I could not walk any further. My legs were cramped and shivering. Every inch seemed like a mile. I was trying hard to push myself. Worse off, the situation was such that I could not go back.

This crippled moment dates to the time when my organization had arranged its most awaited event, the annual marathon. Most of my colleagues were regulars to the big event and I being a fresher, was happily witnessing their excitement. They had already started gearing up for it even though the marathon was two months away. As a part of their preparation, they took the stairs and raced till the 16th floor and only spoke of pushing their limits from ten kilometers to twenty-five kilometers. The idea of waking up early and running did not appeal me enough, so I decided to give it a pass.

As the event date grew closer, my friends pushed me join them. Despite forceful dodging, on the day, I was in my tracks, ready to run the biggest race in my life. I thought it would be a fun event and I would happily finish it off like a dance party. Alas, the reality bestowed upon me after I reached the third kilometer.

Though I had only two more to go, I could not run. My marathon turned into a walkathon and I somehow walked those two kilometers in a tortoise’s speed. Every moment was accompanied by sipping lots of energy drink and regretting my decision to participate. Thanks to the peppy music that kept me going. Though last among my colleagues, I somehow reached my target.

Post the marathon, we decided to catch up on some breakfast as all of us were starving. My senior, with a grilled sandwich in his hand said, “Marinate before you grill”. Those words hit me. I understood where he was heading. I still recall this two-year-old conversation in every second situation in my life.

I knew my preparation was poor and I had a long way to. But the greater learning was this realization that marinating is an important process. As we must marinate veggies well before they hit the flame, we should give ourselves time, soak and upgrade from within. Be it a new job, a new project, a new relationship or a new city, we must consider the time we need to adjust and prepare. Otherwise, the repercussions would speak for themselves.

Now when I look back at the image of me holding the finisher medal, I feel proud.


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