Tuesday, 4 December 2007

Half Marathon

Half marathon was over. Did what I did to prepare for it, with those long runs every weekend. (Started at 3km, then 5, 7, 10 and finally 15k) Went to do carbo loading before the race. (Prior to that, most of my runs were on a nearly empty stomach.) One thing about carbo loading, though - it gives you an incredible amount of crap. I wasn't used to eating that much, and after the run I had to find somewhere to release. When I was done, my eyes widened as I hadn't seen so much crap in my life. I was so full of shit.

Thought that it would be a quiet affair, with me driving down to that place. But I guess my parents wanted to bask in my reflected glory. So after the race I met them, showed them the medal, we took pictures.

The race itself went smoothly. Lots of people everywhere, but the lanes were mostly wide enough, until we got to the Nicoll highway part, where it always seemed as though too many lanes were allocated for the opposite direction. So I usually ran on the other side, and played cat and mouse with the marshals who were pleading with me to stick to my own lane. Not much eye candy, I'm afraid. Maybe I was too distracted during the real run, or maybe I was just unlucky.

Favourite part of the run was going out of Marina South and running down Robinson Road, like the whole place was just cordoned off and reserved for me. (It was.) I felt like a Mongol entering a Chinese city. Run took 2h 30min roughly, better than the 2h 40min I thought I'd do. I guess the strategy of not completely expending my energy early on but run steadily paid off.

Except that I'm on ICT now and just had to do my IPPT 2 days after my half marathon. Just realised that I neglected training for my sit ups and chin ups for my half marathon but luckily I scraped passes in all these events.

I thought I'd give myself some time to be happy with my timing. But some other guy from my company did the full marathon in 4h 10min. Now that is some crazy shit, because I'd have to run sub 2h for a half marathon in order to assure myself that I can make that timing for a full marathon. Guess he's in a completely different league from me.

Now why would I do a half marathon? My old friend told me he never saw me as a distance runner. And frankly I'm not. I highly suspect that most of the people who do the marathon just walk much of the way, and consider themselves to have done it. (If any of you out there is reading this - sorry.) Which is the reason why I'm faster than half of them.

And if you believe that the finishing times are spread out on a Gaussian curve, it means that if I run the median speed and keep it that way throughout the race, I'm always in the most crowded part of the race.

So I tell people that the reason is that I know 6-7 people at work who have done either full of half marathons, and I just wanted to keep up with the Joneses. It wasn't that difficult in the end. But now I got to make the big decision whether or not to do the full marathon. Now that's a lot of time running, and this time I'd have to do 30km endurance tests every week to at least assure myself I'm going to have some decent timing for the full marathon. Or I could just go 40km on my own and then say "fuck the marathon" because I did it already. It's not impossible, because I have the build for running long distance. (skinny, long legs)

I think this marathon is like going to church. Or arriving at Mecca. And shingot did talk about how he had this great emotional feeling at the start of the race. I guess I also had that to a smaller extent. When I started running 10km runs with my jogging buddies I had that feeling too, but it wears away after a while. I think halfway through the 21km run I had a great feeling (especially the Robinson Road part). But after that comes the grit and endurance part, not so bad because this is only a half marathon and you don't know what the full thing is like. And when you're done there is this "is this it?" feeling. Or maybe not.

Well I think next year I will not be running the half marathon. I will either be running the full marathon, or nothing. The only reason why I would run this half marathon again is if I should decide to do a full marathon somewhere else and use this half marathon as a warm up. (At this point I looked up wikipedia for the list of marathon races and found that some sick fuck put in the Bataan Death March as a marathon event.)

There are a lot of reason tags. I didn't get one. I didn't know if I have to buy one. There's a lot of mushy stuff written on them so I usually have to avert my eyes when coming close to them. Stuff like "wait for me honey". "We're getting married on blah blah blah". "I know that I can do it". My reason, if I had to write one would either be "I'm the man" or "it's good for my ego" or "I want to ogle at all the hot chicks here". Or if I wanted to pay tribute to one of the oldest counterculture magazines in Singapore, "Before I Get Old".

Didn't see Nat (full) there, or Shingot (half) or the new guy at work (half). I was with Mao (a uni friend) and Sniper for the first half hour, until I decided I had to go take a pee break in the bushes. But that's OK, thanks to them I found the right pace. I suspect the reason is that both of them are faster than me and I was slowing them down. Anyway I checked their times (sorry guys but on the internet nothing is really private) and found that being a mere 15 mins faster than me means that instead of being faster than 50% of the participants, you are faster than 75% of them.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I had a good run too. Yup the pace was good. Will try for more runs next year and if things go well, the marathon-Jason