Ran this 10km race with my regular running partner, Winnie on 1 Mar, Sunday. For Winnie, it was her first attempt at 10km and prior to the race day, she was not sure whether she could finish the race not walking at some stage. We have had some training at East Coast in the evening after work, the two last covering near 6 km only - the longest run by far.
Quietly, I knew she could deliver around 1 hr 10 min or better but she felt too much pressure had been asserted on her if a target was set for her. She would prefer to run her own pace and to complete it only, relieving her of any pressure for best time. I left it at that but I remained confidence that 1 hr 10 min is not too far-fetched.
The race venue was at Sengkang, near Farmway LRT. We arrived before the flagged off at 0745 hrs, did our warm-up and joined all the runners in the men's and women's veteran category at the start-off. Finally, we were flagged off by Defence Minister Teo. Trying to retire to bed early the night before, Winnie could only manage two hour of sleep and physical fitness could be compromised as a result. Fortunately, it was a cool morning and the track was fairly level throughout, save for some slight uphill in the park.
At the 3 km mark, I could hear her heavy breathing and some bit of struggle but she kept running, keeping a steady pace. One step forward meant one step lesser to our destination, we kept running and never once, stopped for a breather. I was pleasantly surprised at her pace despite fighting sleep the night before. About 1 km to the ending, I took a glance at my watch. We were under 1 hour and by then, I knew we can hit the tape under 1 hr 10 mins. I kept it from Winnie for obvious reason.
Coming to the final 100 metre, the big clock above showed 1 hr 3 mins plus...and I finally said to Winnie, try to finish under 1 hr 5 mins. She got the message and made a final dash - clocking 1 hr 4 min, a fantastic finish to the tape.
For good measure, she finished in a creditable 26 position out of 65 in her category - women's veteran in her first 10 km race. Her timing could have placed her 603 out of 865 in men's category, 129 out of 175 in men's veteran category and 102 out of 285 in women's category. If she is not a super mum, who else is? Kudos Winnie, keep running.