Tuesday, 10 July 2012

- Standard Chartered KL Marathon 2012: A Half-marathon race review By Sue Zanna -

My 1st overseas marathon that I never thought I would do in my life.  And what else can be more exciting than traveling with my bunch of Freaks. We were so excited as we countdown the days to jet off to Kuala Lumpur. Behind the excitement, I was a bit nervous and worried as I was totally not prepared and training was only once, which was a week prior to the event. I told myself not to set any expectation and just enjoy the run, burn the KL road..
We arrived at noon and proceeded to Madam Kwan, our lunch venue in KLCC chosen by Selly for the authentic local Malaysian food. We did a bit of Freaks Family bonding and how I wish the whole members are all here, which I know its impossible Its also a pleasure to meet Razif in person for the 1st time who joined us for lunch. That's nice of him.

- Carbo-loading !! -

- Tom yam soup to compliment the main dish -

- A meal is not complete without some desserts -

After the fulfilling good lunch, we headed to the race pack collection. I could feel the heat is on with preparations were all setting up in the venue. I saw many familiar faces that I felt I was at home back in Singapore. 

- Collection of race-pack -

- Posing at the start/finish point -

Headed to check in to the hotel which was about 5 minutes walk away from the venue. We felt so tired and decided  to get a quick nap before we meet for our carbo dinner loading at the nearby warong in Masjid India.
After dinner, it was an early preparation for the next day. Kamisah and myself decided to turn in early. Unfortunately, my sleep was interrupted due to the hypers runners that were rocking the CITIN MASJID JAMEK with doors slamming, energetic voices and feet stamping. I wish for sleeping pills to knock me off .…

- The room -

Morning alarm went off and we were so ready to start. We stepped out in the drizzle and my thought were with the full marathon Freaks who have started their run at 430am. Could it be another repeat history of Sundown event for them, running in the rain? Fortunately it was a light one that finally stopped when we were in the starting pen. The half marathon crowd was not so hyper, probably too early for some I guess. My heartbeat went fast each time when I looked at the Malaysia's Big Ben and said some prayers to calm myself down. 
I told myself to relax and make this run a leisure, stress free ..... 

- Before the start of the run -

Gun shot was heard and off we go .....  
The 1st sight I saw ahead was a slight uphill and I recalled the veterans mentioned to expect few uphills along the route. I told myself to just focus on the run and looked ahead. Roads were uneven at times and I almost twisted my ankle as I stepped into a pothole. So much of looking ahead that I forgot to watch out the uneven roads, hence I start to put my vision on both areas. I felt strained on my calves for the first 3km but I knew its a struggle especially when I am out of runs for long time. I keep telling myself dont give up and push while I can. 
I skipped the 1st water point and ran maintaining my comfort pace of 7mins/km. Bladder finally ask for mercy to let go and I mumbled to myself not to think about it as there were no portable toilets seen. I diverted my focus each time, think about my kids and mom and if I can make this in less than 3 hours. Whenever theres an uphill, I thought positively ; its a breeze when going downhill so take the chance to speed. I was so happy each time theres a water point with soak sponges.. 
Damn! Singapore should have this with the hot weather. I got addicted with the sponge showered myself and felt so refreshing. It really felt so good. At 15km mark, I looked at the watch. I decided to challenge myself to reach the finishing point below 2hr 45. I got mentally prepared and drive myself to reach the target. It would be an achievement if I can go below that timing. To focus was tough, as my body were trying to get complacent and relax. I got pressured when I see the full marathoners merging and I told myself I should start my engine moving faster. The supporters at the finishing end were very supportive with motivation boards and banners that kept me going. I just had to do it and when I saw the timeboard it was 2:34:09. I sped up before the time change to 2:35:00.
And I did with a timing of 2:34:33 ....  !!!
Tears welled up and never expect I did it after a long absence..  It was such a sweet memories in KL.. 
Thank you to all Freaks who did well in this run for all the fun and moral supports.. 

- A great achievement for myself !! -

1 comment:

  1. Congrats Sue Zanna, hope you and the rest of the Freaks had memorable run at KL Marathon. See u guys soon in SG :)