This was my first half marathon race. I had done the same distance few times and tuned my mindset, I belief I will have no problem at all to complete this race. My trained mileages in June so far had been the highest on my book. Compared to previous months’ records which averaged at ~130km/mth, I completed 160km in June right before this half marathon. Although most of these mileages logged below 20km each time, but I think I had done enough training. I think if we are not really aiming for the best/good timing, as long as you are able to complete your race distance in a week time, you will have no problem to complete the race on the race day.
As per my plan, I wake up on 3am (in fact I couldn’t sleep well and woken by 2:45am), done my business to prepare my self. The most important thing I needed is the Vaseline on my toes and between the thighs. Used tones of Vaseline on my toes, put on the Injinji socks and off to the BA car park by 3:40am. Arrived at BA carpark on 4am and there are still some parking, but its filling up fast. Had my breakfast inside the car (half of the PowerBar, two slide of bread and coffee), put on my shoes and walk to the Dataran Merdeka.
The field is filled with people. This is actually the first time I attend some activity in Dataran Merdeka. Took few pictures on the colorful ex-High Court building and watched the full marathoners flagged off on 5am. Ekiden and half marathoners will be flag off only around 6am. I took my time to slowly warm up, and start to fill myself to the starting line around 5:50am. At that point of time, out of the blue, I felt hungry! The breakfast mast ran out after my warm up session and now I had an empty stomach at the starting line! No choice, so I calm myself and aiming to take some banana at 11th km. HM flagged off on 6:15am. We have about 5000 runners, so from the starting line until 3rd km marker I ran with kind of big crowd. I kept my pace at about 6min/km and stop on most of the water station for water. There are some stations with sponge. This is the first time I used sponge in the race. I made a mistake by squeezed the whole sponge on top of me and wet almost the whole body by the first sponge station. I guess my sock also wet that time and caused extra resistant on my toes to form blister faster than I expected.
I usually got blister on toes when I ran longer than 10km, and the pain will come out by 12~14km. This time, the pain hit me on right leg, right after the 9th km. I must have adjusted my running form to pamper the pain and put on too much pressure to my other leg. Its ankle start to hurt at 14th km. With both legs downed, I can no longer maintain the pace. The pace dropped to 7~8 min/km and subsequently the run-walk strategy took over. I asked few first aider, but they didn’t prepare any Vaseline. I think I need to keep some spare myself on my next race. As predicted, HM runners will join the rest (5km/10km/FM) in front of SOGO. But may be my time is not so good, so when I reached that stretch, the crowd ease a bit. The joy of completing the race took over me, and I pick up my pace again in this final km. Completed the race with 2:25’30” with joy and a big happy face. The official time was 25sec faster than my time, I must be too happy that time and forgotten to stop my watch. Collection of finisher medal is fast, but the banana I got is yet to ripen :( The result was 10 minutes slower than my target, but looking at my condition, I am glad I am still able to finish under 2:30.
With the blister and the painful ankle on each of my legs, I decided to give them a quick stimulation. Took off the shoes and walked barefoot from Dataran Merdeka to BA carpark. What an experience! I don’t felt my blister any more and the ankle seems to be relief a bit. Btw, it is walkway on most of the stretch, except some road crossing. The worst road surface is actually on the carpark, the small stone is quite sharp and it’s painful to step on them. Clean myself and heading home around 10am.
Overall, this is a very well organized race and everyone I asked are quite happy with it. I will definitely return next year, but, it will be a full marathon for me.
Btw, I registered to The River Jungle Marathon at Hulu Langat in September. It will be my first marathon, and it has a very challenging route. Can I finish it? I am not sure, but I am sure that I will not push for the time or speed; instead I will enjoy the company and the scene, with focus on how my body reacts to this distance. I will throw in more BA-Sri Hartamas + double hills and Taman Duta training in August. What I going to do in July? I got a month full of races, will 2x half marathons, Ipoh International Run (this Sunday) and Seremban Half Marathon (24 July). Both half marathon will limit the medal to 200th, should I push for the speed? It’s depend! If my ankle and flu get better by Saturday, I will push for it in
for my target: 2:15. Ipoh
See you in
this Sunday. Ipoh