Sunday, May 30, 2010

Adidas Sundown Marathon 2010

It was my first participation in Adidas Sundown 21km Half Marathon 2010 on 29 May, Saturday. The race venue was at Changi Exhibition Hall running along the long stretch of Changi Coastal Road.

I was more mentally and physically prepared than Chua, who was to replace Winnie in this event. Especially the last two weeks before the run, Chua had to shuttle between Singapore and his hometown, Muar to handle some family matters. It was indeed energy sapping for him this time around.

Our race was scheduled at 2100 hrs and at 1900 hrs, Chua drove over to my place to pick me up. I had my early dinner at 1730 hrs and Chua had to drive back from Muar, only to arrive in the afternoon, missing some sleep and dinner to run this race with me.

The only access to Changi Exhibition Hall was via Loyang Road as the road from ECP was closed for the race. The usually quiet Changi Point was jam-packed with vehicles heading to the direction of the start-off point.

We arrived early, at about 2000 hrs. Took our time checking up the place and warming up. I donned my newly bought Body Science tight top and shorts, had tried twice during practice and found it to be useful. Not cheap though - it cost me more than S$200and it gonna be good.

Those participating in the 84km Ultra-Marathon had been flagged-off at 1900 hrs while our event attracted some 6,000 runners to be flagged-off at 2100 hrs. Finally, we were flagged-off. We were somewhere in the middle section and overtaking was made quite difficult too. Almost immediately, I lost Chua among the runners. At the 3km mark, stream of runners who arrived later were still heading to the start-point. I saw Pauline who was also participating in the 21km event, shouted & waved at her. Boy, she was among the late comers heading to the start point when we had already covered more than 3km.

The weather was fine and the lane was broad, I had no problems overtaking many runners. For the first 10km, I maintained a steady pace. At the half way mark where we made a U-turn back, I saw Chua who was not too far behind me. He caught up with me and briefly, we were running together. When I felt I was still doing well, I decided to hasten up my pace. I was surprised that my pace was still steady despite already covered 15 km. At about 19 km mark, I glanced at my wrist watch which indicated 2250 hrs. I told myself, I must really open up more if I wished to go under 2 hours. I had to finish by 2300 hrs if I wanted to go under 2 hours. Some runners including few ladies overtook me in the last 2 km but I did overtake some too. At that point, taking every 1 km seemed to be an arduous affair but I pressed on. About 200 metres to the finish, the adrenaline rush in me propelled me to really sprint all the way and I even overtook a Caucasian runner who was about 50 metres in front of me. There were people cheering me on, I was even more fired up. I gave a thumbs-up when I touched the finishing line. The time showed 2 hours 2 mins plus when I crossed over and deducting 1 min from the gun time, I should come under 2 hours 1 min plus I think. A little disappointed that I couldn't go under 2 hours and that goes my bet to George, loser pays for coffee but I was more than satisfied with my performance. I had sliced off some 13 minutes from last year Safra run. Chua did not do badly either, given he was not in tip-top condition and he came in about 1 minute later.

After the run, both of us went for frog porridge supper in Geylang. We deserved this sumptuous supper.

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