Friday, June 27, 2014
Running Third Quarter Marathon
I met up a secondary schoolmate for lunch recently and we started reminiscing the good old days when we were running in marathon events as students. If I can recall, there were not many run or walk events in the 70s. There was this New Nation Walk that I can still remember. I think the walk distance was 5 km and when we finished, we were given a completion certificate without our name - we just have to write our name on it.
Mobile Marathon was the most prominent run event, perhaps the equivalent of Standard Chartered Marathon of present time. The event came in 4 stages - first quarter run for 10 km in early part of the year, second quarter run for 20 km in second part of the year, third quarter run for 30 km in the third quarter of the year and finally, the full marathon distance of 42km in the last quarter of the year. I ran that event with my classmates and we were just 15-year old jackasses. That year was 1977. We had no idea what carbo loading thingy was, we had no idea how to properly train up ourselves and our running shoes were not even made for running either. We can't afford a good pair of running shoes then. When it was time to run, we just run. I participated in every quarter that year except for the last quarter - the year end full marathon event. Quite frankly, I had no idea what I will be running into mid way into the 30 km race but I can remember clearly it was torturous.
Turnout was huge and I remember running into Mr Chan Chee Seng, a veteran MP and a Parliamentary Secretary who was in his late 40s or perhaps 50s. He was still fit at his age and he even waved at us after cruising past us. I even chanced upon national footballer, Robert Sim and was tagging with him at some point. He had no air and friendly. Robert was one of my favourite football players too. I remember I ran until I had cramp at the later stage. I was forced to walk to the end and I have clean forgotten the route.
I had collected quite a number of run and walk certificates in the 70s but regrettably, I threw all away. I can only remember some events especially the third quarter marathon where I completed as a 15-year old jackass. It was fun then.