Originally posted at http://www.thememoryjogger.com.au/running-off-the-jetlag/ on 3 Dec 2014.
A very long flight with delays during the flight and the short stop over in Kuala Lumpur – perfect way to top off a flight delayed by a good hour at takeoff. If it was something I could control I would be annoyed – as it’s not, all I could do was try and catch some sleep between the occasional movie.
Landing in Dubai the weather was a perfect 26 degrees. I arrived mid afternoon and caught a cab to the hotel. After a slow check-in, I was able to finally drop my bags in my room and call home before grabbing a shower. There’s not a lot that beats a hot shower after traveling for what seemed an eternity.
A quick trip to the nearest supermarket for some essentials, bananas, water, juice and electrolyte drinks then back to the hotel.
I had organised to catch up with a colleague of a friend of mine who works in a similar industry. Having only been in Dubai for five or so weeks, Kevin was the perfect person to get some advice for a new businessperson in town.
We went to an English style pub for some fish and chips and a couple of pints. Despite the good company, the long flight and lack of sleep were starting to take their toll and I was ready to call it a night before too far into the evening.
By 9pm Dubai time I was in bed and pushing zzzz’s.
A slept solid and woke around 5:30am Dubai time. A quick call home, then I scoffed down a banana followed by a big drink of juice – on with the Hoka’s and out for a run to go exploring Dubai. Prior to heading over to Dubai I had conducted a few searches on-line to see if I could find any running circuits or routes that would be suitable for training. Most were pretty short, but as I was tapering for a marathon that wasn’t too big a problem – finding them, well that might be a challenge.
One problem I quickly found was that the majority of roads in Dubai are not easy to cross by foot, except via designated overpasses or underpasses. Heading off along a major road I deviated a block away and before long I found myself in an area called The Greens that was a residential area with a fantastic footpath/track around a canal. One of the few footpaths that wasn’t sand.
The view was fantastic and I quickly found myself with other runners trotting around a tree-lined path as the sun came up projecting reflections of the buildings on the glistening water (see the pic above). A couple of circuits added to my run to the track were enough to cover 5kms or so and work up a sweat as I blew away the jetlag cobwebs. What a lucky find.
The best way to get the body back on track after a long journey, is to get out for a run!
Running back to the hotel I reflected back on the last day or so. Only yesterday I was having dinner with Diane in Carlton, and this morning I’m running in the streets of Dubai. No matter how many times I travel (and I’m a pretty seasoned traveller) it always amazes me how, in less than a day, a person can be transported to the other side of the world into new cultures, languages and a way of life and be going about things as normal. It was only two generations or so ago that this would have been unimaginable. I remind myself again (and not for the first time) to take time out to appreciate the “now” and be thankful for the opportunities that have come my way #luckyboy .
Even though the MDS is still many months away, being a little closer to Morocco got me thinking about the run and my training program. Sure the Singapore Marathon would be good for my conditioning, but there is a long way to go before I’ll be physically equipped to tackle the toughest footrace in the world. Today I enjoyed the run, but in the back of my mind, I’m thinking about what is ahead.
Back at the hotel I was able to stretch in the gym before rehydrating and then grabbing a shower. Breakfast was pretty good and I was able to load up to compensate from substandard nutrition in transit – although the coffee in Dubai was seriously ordinary. It was staggering to see that they had the equivalent of Krispy Kreme donuts out for the breakfast buffet – needless to say, I didn’t have any 😉
My work colleague Brendon offered to pick me up at 9am and head into the office for a full day of meetings and workshops. Given I had plenty of work to do, I went straight back to the hotel after work.
A few calls back home and sort out some emails before trying to work out what to eat for dinner. By sheer chance I stumbled across a health food chain called Kcal and hopped into a Quinoa Veggie Burger, Steamed Veggies, a side salad and Sweet Banana Sushi. Delicious – wish they had one near home!
Well it’s been a long day and tomorrow will be just as long. I have a 5am conference call that I need to be online for so a good night’s sleep is important. Then maybe another run 😉