This Blog Looks Dead…. 😛
Gosh.. has time flew past that fast? I just looked back at this blog and realized the last update I made was July last year! phew….
That last entry was for the Jog for Hope event which preceded the first run I did at Putrajaya ie. the Shape & Men’s Health Night Run 2009. I’ve a draft copy of the Shape Night Run’s entry in my laptop… will promise to review and upload that soon.
Given that I’ve now resumed my blogging on the Boardgame meetups, I’ll also allocate time to do regular updates here as I’ve given myself a target of doing one run per month for this year (oops.. I missed January!).
After last July’s Shape Night Run, I did one more run at Putrajaya ie. the Ekiden International Relay with my Datacom colleagues. That was a short 5 x 3km relay.. but it was fun (and different) taking part in a relay race for the first time. 🙂
Besides Ekiden, I did another 3 runs last year including the DNF* (haiz) Adidas King of the Road and ending the year with StanChart’s Singapore Marathon. Rest assured, all these will be blog-back retrospectively here. hehe.
*DNF = “Did not Finish” in running lingo
BACK TO THE PRESENT
Hope that was a quick enough summary of what were “missing” here for the 2nd half of last year. Let’s move on… and come with me to the just concluded (and also the first in M’sia) Night Marathon held at Putrajaya (again).
Technically, Shape & Men’s Health holds the title for organizing the first night run in M’sia. However the Shape Run did not include a full marathon (42km) category. Yesterday’s Putrajaya Night Marathon 2010 have all the key categories ie. 42km (Full), 21km (Half), 7.7km (supposedly the 10km Quarter) and 5km (Fun) hence they laid claim to the title “First Night Marathon in M’sia“.
That’s Marketing for you… 🙂
Wayang during Running Kit Collection Time
We’d registered for this event rather early (16 Dec 2009) and I’d somehow misplaced our registration receipts which we need when collecting our running kits!! Duh…
We tried to search high-n-low to no avail, and on Friday (5-Feb), the last day for the running kit collection, I decided to make a desperate long-shot by just dropping into the collection point at Wisma OCM; walked up to those I-hope-they-will-be-helpful people manning the collection booths… and told them, “I lost my receipts. Can I still collect my running kit ar?” while putting on my most forlornly sad look.
Silence… a few looked at each other… but no one said anything. Hmmm….
Now I was trained that in a negotiation, once you put the “proposal” on the table, you don’t say a word coz the next party to open his mouth loses the balance… so I kept quiet… 😛
Someone finally spoke…. “Well, since it’s now 6pm and there’s no crowd, let’s see what we can do. Which category did you sign up for?”
They located the large ring binder file that contains all the registration form… and started flipping thru the forms one-by-one starting from the first registration. The forms were loosely sorted by date; I say “loosely” coz there were quite a number of forms that appeared out-of-date sequence.
Took them about 15 min.. but they finally found my registration form!! The other guy was quick to locate my running bib number, and gave me a M-sized t-shirt (no running vest; they are for the half- & full-marathon runners only). I asked them to cross-reference to the Fun Run category to locate the reg form for waiyan – which they did, also without hesitation or complain. Aren’t these people nice? 😛
I’ve to say I need to take my hat off and express my grateful appreciation to those who helped me search and find my registration form. They do not have to do this… by policy, they could have just asked me to bugger off… try again next year and oh, dun lose your receipt again.. now go away, horrible man.
But they didn’t… and were more than helpful! Now that’s GREAT CUSTOMER SERVICE!!
My bib number was M024 (I did say I registered very early la) and it’s not a very “ong” number for Chinese.. it means “easy to die”. gulped.
I was thinking, hmmm since these people have been so nice and helpful perhaps I can ask them to change my number… given there appeared to be some running kits left uncollected – and it’s like 10 more minutes to close of collection.
A man who appeared to the be supervisor, seeing that I’d already found my reg form and running kit, said gently to me, “You are lucky you came at this time when we are free else we won’t be doing this for you. Don’t do this next time yeah?”
Hmm… maybe I better not push my luck too far. M024 looks just nice to me!! hehe…
The trip to Putrajaya was smooth, traffic-free and took us only 30 min (probably less) via MEX (Maju Expressway) from MRR2. We reached Putrajaya Presint 3 in good time; parked our car a couple blocks away from Istana Kehakiman – where everything starts and ends for the run.
I took a few minutes to do a quick jog to warm my body up, went to the portable toilet to do what needs to be done, and then wriggled my way into the starting pen where runners gathered to be flagged off.
My 7.7 km run (which was supposed to be the 10 km quarter-marathon) was to start at 9 pm. waiyan’s 5 km Fun Run starts 15 minutes later. Qualifying time for the 7.7 km is 80 min and medals given to first 400 finishers only.
I think I’m about 20-line deep inside the kandang (starting pen)…. which would probably take like 20 secs before I reach the starting line (where the arch is). Given that I’m not racing for a podium finish, this is not an issue. Anyway I normally start the timer on my Garmin only when I crossed the starting line. 🙂
Putrajaya at night can be very beautiful. Too bad the crappy phone on my HTC can only do so much… and my sis laiwah who carries a behemoth Canon DSLR did not come along for this event else you can see photos of this quality -> SCKLM09. hehe.
GETTING READY TO START
The race was started 3 min before 9pm! It caught me slightly by surprise as I was still fiddling with my MP3 player when I noticed the rows in front my me started moving off….
Seems like some runners carried water bottles into the starting pen.. and after finishing the water, they just chucked the empty bottles on to the street! The empty bottles can be a danger to the runners from behind if they stepped on the bottles and slipped… aiyoh, learn some civic-mindedness la!!
The 7.7 km route is very similar to the 5 km Shape Run route. We essentially take a straight line (flat terrain) towards PICC in Presint 5. Where it differs is that in Shape Run, we do a short turn around PICC but in this run we take a larger circle, and there’s a branch-out at the 5 km mark to go around Presint 4 before coming back to the straight stretch heading back towards Istana Kehakiman.
Why does everyone run so fast at the start? tsk tsk
After having been to a few races, I always noticed (especially in the short distance category) that people seems to RACE off at the starting gate… vvvrrrooomm, vvrrroooommm.. zzoomm!! Why the rush ar?
In the past, I tend to follow their pace… Nowadays I just ignore all these ppl running past me and followed my own starting pace which is usually just a slight notch above my target pace for the run (in this run, I’d intended to target 5.30 pace).
“Pace” means minutes per km; so a 5:30 pace means I intend to do one km in 5m30sec
I kept this pace until I reach the Equilibrium Point ie. when the number of runners overtaking you has dropped to more or less equal to the number of runners you are overtaking. 🙂 In this run, I noticed that it happened around the 1 km mark (ie Lap 1 below). hehe.
If you then maintained this pace for another half km or so (actual distance differs from race to race), you’ll soon find you have reached the Overtaking Point ie. when you are overtaking more runners than being overtaken!
You can upped your pace or just retained the existing pace… either way, you can be sure you are slowly improving your finishing position with each forward step you take. Obviously the sooner this point is reached in the run, the stronger you’ll finish.
At around the 2 km mark (see picture above, Lap 2), I got a little scare when I saw a large group of runners coming around the opposite side of the road. OMG, am I so FAR BEHIND!! I thought these were the lead runners of my 7.7km category who have already went one loop around PICC Presint 5 (see map below) and were coming into their 5 km mark!!
That would mean I’m probably more than 500 pax behind!! And they are like.. 2+ km ahead of me!! I’m so dead…. all these ponderous talk about Equilibrium Point, Overtaking Point must be slowing me down!! LOL
Thankfully, I noticed the blue bib on their vests and realized these were the half-marathoners who were coming around the bend. They flagged off half an hour earlier than us. Phew…. still got hope for my finisher medal!
It was at the 3 km (Lap 3) point that I saw Mdm N3271 (aiyoh.. I didn’t get to ask for her name!) whom we first saw at the SCKLM09 (see picture below) where she clocked an impressive 60 min for her 10.4 km run (and I did hehe, 68 min for the same race, oops).
I first overtook her during an elevated stretch of the run but she caught up with me a short distance later. I decided to just pace with her as I noticed that she runs at a steady brisk pace of 6:00 min/km.
At this point, both of us were very much running by ourselves with some runners scattered in front and some at the back. The gaps were widening both front and back. Occasionally a few strong runners will go past us.. but we were overtaking more runners than being overtaken.
I would probably say those casual runners were behind us and in front of us would be the strong runners who are likely running at a faster pace than us. To catch them, we need to put on Turbo mode… (if we do have a Turbo mode, hehe).
Both of us kept pace with each other until the 6 km mark.. when I decided to step up and go for the home stretch of the last 1.5 or so km. I bet she was not too far behind either… If she had kept to her steady 6:00 min/km pace, she should finish this run around the 46 min mark.
I really admire her stamina and endurance given her age. I’ll be happy if I can still complete a 7.7 km run at that age; never mind in 46 min. 😛
There were only a few runners coming into the home stretch together with me so there was no crowding and we were smoothly ushered into the finishing queue. Were given a card indicating our position, then hurried along the queue to collect our medal and certificate before getting a pack of food and a bottle of water.
Distance: 7.66 km (Garmin)
Time: 43.5 min
Average Pace: 5.42 min/km
Target pace was 5:30… so FAILED… hahaha
My timings (above) as shown from my Garmin FR405. Kept a pretty even pace. The vertical axis should be “Pace” (ie min/km) and not “Speed” (which would be km/h).
Here’s another look at the 7.7 km route as shown using Google Earth below. You can the PICC building which is like the halfway point for this run.
Drinks were a-plenty everywhere… ais milo, 100plus, Nescafe…. they’d a few stations set up so it’s not like all runners cramming into one long queue. Well thought out.
I refueled myself while waiting for waiyan to finish her 5 km Fun Run. She came back around 10 pm which was pretty good timing. According to her Garmin, she clocked 42 min but the distance was marked as 5.4 km. Not bad…
|Front & Back of the 7.7km Finisher Medal|
My Adidas running flats that’s been with me since SCKLM last June… It’s mileage is around 200+ km so it should still last another 300+ km for me.
We also bumped into Yim who was doing the half-marathon. You can bump into him at almost EVERY RUNNING EVENTS in town!! LOL He’s aiming for his sub-2hr half-marathon which I’ve no doubt he’ll crack that soon…. before moving to do his sub-4hr full marathon (kekeke).
REPLACING LOST CALORIES 😛
We were supposed to take MEX (Maju Expressway) back to MRR2… However I took the wrong turning and we ended up driving along the old Putrajaya highway which took us towards Kajang. We ended up having Kajang Satay for supper….
Wow… the Haji Samsuri stall was brimming with runners from the Putrajaya Night Marathon! Seems like everyone has the same idea that satay is good for you after a good run… haha.
Yep, that’s it for my first 2010 run! My next run was to be the Energizer Night Race on the 27th March (hmm, “night run” seems to be the trend now) but we could be doing the Bareno Run @ Bukit Jalil which is two weeks before the Energizer Night Race.
There was also another run held on the same day Nuffnang’s Tiger Run 2010 which is *not* your typical run. A FB running fren of mine took part in it and came out 1st!