Sunday, November 20, 2011

Penang Bridge International Marathon 2011

As I'm writing this, I'm comfortably resting in my room and recovering from the run just a few hours ago. How did it go? Well, I would say this was the best run of the year for me so far. So OK, the build-up to the event was pretty sad with limited mileage and all, but somehow that didn't really matter when push came to shove.

After a full day of carbo-loading and then some (which I will write about, for sure), went to bed pretty early last night after laying out what's needed in the morning.

Had a decent sleep and woke up at 4.30am. Straight away I looked out the window and saw some runners and officials by the roadside. FYI, the full marathon was flagged off at 2am!

Then it was time for me to shower and I also made myself some peanut butter sandwiches. Had a couple of bananas as well before putting on my running gear.

The 10km run was to be flagged off at 6am and by 5 something, the Start area, which is right in front of my hotel, was already buzzing.

When I finally got down after stretching for a good few minutes in the room, I immediately bumped into a few of my Media Prima colleagues. Everyone was all geared-up for a good run.

It was also a very cool morning, with the rain having just stopped a few hours before. But a complaint I have is on the lack of atmosphere. The runners were all very excited, but there was no loud music to build up everyone's semangat. Bummer.

The run was then flagged off at 6am as planned, but having started at the back (as usual), it took us six full minutes just to get to the starting line!

And then it was off! The first km was good, but then I felt a little tightness in my calves... Which disappeared after the 2nd km. Woohoo! And I must say that running with my compression pants was a really good decision. It was comfortable, and for the first time, my legs held up right till the end without much problems. Hurrah for compression technology! : )

And after 3kms, we finally got on the flyover that took us to the bridge. And soon, the spectacular structure became visible. Even though it was still dark at that point, the sight was pretty breathtaking. And oh yeah, the breeze accompanying our run then was calming and cool...

Then came the water station test. And unfortunately, the organizers flunked the first one. Although they had loads of bottles left, they were still in boxes and it took the volunteers some time to rip them open. And instead of pouring into cups, runners took the bottles and threw them away after a few gulps. Very membazir, I must say.

After a couple of kms on the bridge, we made a u-turn. It was also getting brighter then and many took the opportunity to snap away. Including yours truly, of course : )

By this time, my pace had slowed down, although after every short walking break, I felt instantly revitalized. The iPod was telling me that I was on track to finish the run within my targetted 90mins, so that was a good piece of motivation for me.

Oh, we also bumped into a sea of yellow, courtesy of Digi : )

I must say though that the final km was truly the hardest bit. Again, there was no music to get us into the groove, and there were no volunteer motivators to spur us on as well. So we just plodded along. Telling ourselves that the Finish line was just around the corner, and the feeling would be sweet.

I crossed the line at 86mins; 4mins inside my targetted time, and the feeling was awesome.

I then picked up my Finisher's medal, drank some water and headed back to the hotel, fully satisfied. A good run indeed, and one I'll always remember...


Che Kay said...

starting point marathon ni mula di area Queensbay ke? Kalau di Kota Kinabalu tiap-tiap tahun ada Sutera Harbour 7K Sunset Charity Run.

M.Zul said...

Mungkin one day, boleh try masuk larian di KK pulak. Insya Allah :)


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