Dayz Of My Life...E Re Nata
StanChart Marathon Singapore 5 Dec 2010
Woke up at 1am this Sunday morning, all ready for my marathon. Had a bagel, cookies and some soya milk. Lubricated, dressed in my marathon gear and headed to the bus stop opposite Khatib MRT station to meet up with my friends Endon, Singapore Blade Runner and Hamritpal. While waiting for them, there was some rain. SBR and Endon arrived in a taxi but there was no sign of Hamritpal.
We managed to contact Ham and waited for him outside NTUC, we arrived at Orchard around 2:40am and went to McDonald's at Shaw House(?). Met some friends and greetings were exchanged. This year there were 3 different start points for the marathon. The full marathon begins at Orchard, the half marathon at Sentosa and the 10km at esplanade but it all ends at the same place in Esplanade.
After a couple of hours, we proceeded to the bag deposit behind Wheelock place, there I met another friend Alexandra, we said hi and wished one another the best and I headed to lorry "I" to deposit my bag.
Saw my friends for the last time in the morning as we headed off in different directions. I went to my pit which is for 6 hours and above. Met Mohan Marathon (this marathon is his 112th), he was naughty took a candid shot of me. ;D
The gun was off and it took me around 5 mins or more to reach the starting line, did my usual pace and was feeling quite good. I had a feeling I am going to do better than my Sundown timing (which was my worst so far at 7 hours). After 10km, I began a jog-walk-run routine. Was feeling fine until I reach East Coast Park when I sense some heel trouble. Skipped the run and decided to walk and jog instead.
Still do not understand the cheerleaders, how is the cheer "Don't walk, run!!!" is going to spur me on. Concentrated on the distance markers instead. Well, at least they attempted to cheer unlike the previous marathons I go to, the cheerleaders were sleeping or playing games.
I also noticed that us runners over 6 hours were outrunning the sub 6 hours runners and even the sub 5 runners according to their bibs.
The marathon also took me to "Gardens by the bay" which is really a construction site, before reaching marina barrage, I met Mohan again, I told him I had walked the last 5km due to heel pain, he asked if I am having pain in my heel why am I pointing at my knee. Haha.
He encouraged me and asked me to encourage others too. Watching Mohan was like watching a pro in action, whoever he approached (who was walking at that time) ran. Must learn from him.
I conquered the dreaded Sheares bridge.
It was quite weird to run past my bag collection (at the F1 pit building) to get to the finish point at the esplanade.
I posed for cameras and made sure my bib number is seen. I took alot of water until my bladder was almost bursting.
Ran pass the finish line with a fist in the air.
Overall, I don't mind the run but find it really silly for the bag collection to be different from the finish line to make it worst I was twice pointed in the wrong direction by the volunteers. I had to ask fellow runners how to get to F1 pit building.
adidas Sundown marathon 2010
A week before Sundown, I was down with mild flu and did not manage to do my usual workout and tapering. Nonetheless, I was pumped and ready to go.
Sundown was on the 29th May 2010, the marathon event of 42km was scheduled to be at 11:59pm Saturday, on that day I took some hours off work during the day to get some sleep.
As if like a prescience of things to come, the chartered buses scheduled to pick us up at 9:30pm did not arrive until 10:00pm. The buses were jam packed.
Walked around the expo area and had a free ice-cream wafer, took my place at the pen and we blasted off at 11:59pm.
The roads were narrow and many "runners" who were walking did not keep to the left as they should, so I was faced with a sea of walkers, some of us resorted to running on the grass.
It was dark everywhere save for the street lamps, I cannot regale you with my description of sights as they were unseen unlike my previous StanChart marathon. The cheerleading volunteers were disinterested and half-hearted and did no do what hey were specified to do, one runner jokingly admonished the cheerleaders on what they were supposed to do, did they do it? Hmm....No! Some of them were even playing card games.
The hydration stations were not prepared for the onslaught of runners as when we get there, they were rushing to fill the cups with isotonic liquid and water and most of the cups were half-filled and not enough banana stations.
At 25km, I hit the dreaded wall and it was very tough for me to carry on, I walked and even then I was struggling a bit. It was not fun. I had to concentrate on putting each foot forward, I stopped and rest a few times and massaged some analgesic cream onto my legs.
Oh yes, there is only how many times I can take East Coast Park, it seems that all my runs involved this place, can't the organisers find other places? I mean who said that East Coast Park should have dominion over marathon running routes?
After the run which I unfortunately did not beat the sunrise, I went and took my isotonic drink and a medal was hung around my neck, one of the few times, however the finisher's tee was out of "S"-sized and I took a very huge "M"-sized T. Went to the changing room, wiped myself, lathered myself with deodorant and waited for the chartered bus to take me to Pasir Ris MRT station then I took a cab home.
So I have an over-sized finishers' tee which I can't wear as it'll swim on me. :(
Rested a couple of hours and headed back to work, lactic acid had a field day with my body, I have some sore toes and few minor strains here and there which does little help to me as my work place has a squatting toilet. Currently, I am best friends with my analgesic cream.Not that I am getting paid for this endorsement but Dr Joint analgesic cream is the way to go. Does not carry the pungent aroma of analgesic cream but does a good job of soothing sore and tired muscles.
Thought I lubricate myself well and of all the places I forgot to lubricate, I forgot to lubricate my back which of course caused some chaffing and when I took a bath when I get home, I paid the price for not lubricating enough.
It is so clear what is about to come
A bright beginning I must share
My heart leaps a thousand times
its rhythms soothes my fears
My heart says yes but my mind berates it so
My mind does not see what my heart is willing to follow
Oracles I am afriad to seek
Lest it confirm my mind's worries
Choosing this path is not easy
But my eyes believes my heart
I take you on my journey on my palms
and asked you to come visit me...
Standard Chartered Singapore Marathon 6 Dec 2009
Woke up at 2am, had a toasted cinnamon raisin bagel with generous servings of peanut butter. Took a shower, dressed myself in my black addidas singlet, UVEX sunglasses and reebok pants. Poured a redbull drink into my water bottle and diluted it with some water. Took a 20 minutes walk to my bus pick-up place at Yishun stadium.
At 3:30am, I took two handfuls of baked almonds while waiting for the bus to arrive. There were too many passengers and only 1 bus. Bus driver assured them that another bus will be on its way. Bus driver seems flustered and some of the runners who could not board the bus were frustrated.
By 4:15am, the bus departed Yishun and we alighted at the former Warrant Officers club. We made a beeline to the baggage deposit area and I was issued R0448 to claim the bag later on after the race. Trudged through the underground passage at the Esplanade to reach the starting point. There were many people stretching and limbering up, I followed suit.
In my mind, I was taking in the sights and sounds and the atmosphere. At 5am, the MC were talking and was trying to get us involved but most of us were too busy stretching and concentrating on our long race instead. I was giving myself a pep talk and. put on my UVEX variomatic (read: transition) sunglasses
At 5:30am, the air horn sounded and that signaled the start of the marathon, I made it a point to wave at any camera I saw (this is from my experience in 2008 when I did not get any photos of me running!).
Not even 1km from the start point, many male runners were peeing in the bushes. Some of them wanted to run to a nearby construction site to pee but were chased away by the security there.
At around, 2km a lady when to the kerb and held on to her right side, I think she is having a side stitch.
It was still dark and I was keeping a steady pace, saw the drink station and took a drink. I ran 10km non-stop which was good. Did it for another 5km, when I started this routine of walk-jog-run (that is 20 minutes of jogging, followed by 2 minutes of walking and running for another few minutes). I was disappointed as I could only do this routine for another few km or so when my body and mind was complaining, so at 21km, I was walking and jogging.
East Coast park was crowded with tents and groggy campers who stared at us. By this time, I could see many runners were caving in, some were down with cramps, others just stood by the side crouching down.
That is when runners stop and gave help to fellow runners and giving them the thumbs up, other runner without hesitation, stopped and gave fellow runners massages, their bananas (fruit), energy gels, water etc.
I made it a point to drink at every drink station, eat at every banana station (there were only 2 stations) and power bar station (only 1 power bar station). This constant replenishment helped.
At certain areas we passed, there were supporters who kept cheering us on. I gave hi 5 to 2 kids. As certain roads were closed to vehicles, some people had a picnic at the road.
There was this lady runner who dressed like a witch complete with a cone hat. Many runners were shouting, "Hi witch" in jest and she would reply with thank yous. I outrunned that witch. Mwahahahaha!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Okay by 32 km, it seems I could not continue anymore, I was walking more than running but I soldiered on until by the 36km, I was walking more and as I around the bend near the finish line, I sprinted across the finish line.
The moment I crossed the finish line is something that my limited vocabulary can't describe. It is overwhelming, the fact that I did it. There were so many times during the race that I felt like giving in but did not. Can you imagine at 40km with 2.195 km to go, I wanted to throw in the towel???!!! Sure, it is easy to say, "don't give up" when you are at the sidelines but to battle physical fatigue and mind, it is not easy. To make myself to carry on, is a feat itself in my approximation.
I collected my medal and finisher's T-shirt. I was really really beat. I felt like crumpling to the grass and sleep. I did not do it because the grass was muddy. I walked to Suntec city and wiped myself with hygiene wipes, liberal amounts of deodorant, changed into my finisher's T-shirt and went home.
The moment I reached home, I switched on the air-con and just slept. Woke up a couple of hours later and slept again at 6:30pm. Woke up at 3:30am, slept again and woke up at 5:30am. I feel good and refreshed.
I finish my marathon in 5 hrs plus. I am not really happy with this time because I know that I can have a better result. The next marathon I am going to do must be below 5 hours, I'll be happy even if it is 4 hours and 55 minutes.
The marathon photos are not out yet, I'll post pics when it is out.
Recently, a journalist wrote in her column about plodders, people who joined the marathon and walked instead of running and many runners thought it was not fair as many of them had trained hard for the marathon and these plodders just plodded their way to the finish line and claim their medal and finishers tee.
I am quite neutral about this with the exception of groups of plodders who are friends who make their way to the front and walked when the air horn sounded thus creating a jam for everyone. There different pens for different timing. If you must walk, do it at the last pen which is sub 5 or 6. My mum told me that there were people walking around 1pm near my grandma's place which is in the Lavender area. So we'll see what happens in 2010 when we will have 80 000 participants. It is going to be an interesting race.
My congrats to Luke Kibet who once again win the Singapore Marathon.
Thoughts after the marathon:
(1) It was fun seeing people peeing in the bushes with police around.
(2) Volunteers should be more tactful. Volunteers were shouting, "Take it and go!" when handing out power bars. Or a volunteer in red polo shirts telling us that topical pain reliving cream were useless. Hello aunty, are you running? You look like you stopped running 20 years ago. Even if this relieves us of 5 minutes of strain, it is good. Don't go around belittling us.
(3) Littering the ground with paper cups and banana skins with the police around.
(4) 2010 Singapore Marathon will have 80 000 participants. It is only good if more improvements are made. I mean certain places are pretty narrow and we have to squeeze through throngs of walkers.
Volunteers with their medical sling bag were not beng really "medical". I saw some runners in pain and they were helped by other runners wheras the "medical" team were like standing there. No one expect them to be experienced or trained but at least make the effort to do something.
At the drinks station, most of the water cups were not even half-filled, you either had to grab 2 cups or choose a cup that had been filled this creates a bottle-neck as the runners were choosing their cups or asking the cup be filled to the brim.
"Run, run, don't walk!" was what some of the volunteers shouted. I do not know how this phrase can be used as an encouragement. It sounded like my teacher rushing us to class after recess. Or rushing to cross the traffic light before it turns red.
Would this phrase be better, "Yes you can!" be better? Firstly this phrase is shorter and secondly the volunteer shouter do not have to make the awkward effort to pronounce the "k" sound from walk. Think about it.
Outside Giordano at Nathan Road.
My nephew with his panda wallet, niece and my pop.
a lazy monday morning...22nd dec 08
at marina square