Monday, 23 October 2017

6 Hours Around 400m Track At UM24

UM24 is an endurance run which has the format of looping around a 400m track in University of Malaya stadium for 24-hours, 12-hours or 6-hours.

I actually registered for the 24-hours category during its inaugural event back in 2015, when I was still trying to achieve my 100km target but alas, they had to change the venue and it wasn’t at a place where it was convenient for my family to go and support me. I can run anywhere but I still need to consider my family whenever I go out for a race so it was a no go that year.
And here I was, finally doing the UM24 but at a much lesser category. Thanks to Ten Senses, I entered the 6-hour (Night) category as part of my training for my upcoming Putrajaya Night Marathon and another bigger race slotted in 2018.

I had done a 30K the week before, at Newton Challenge 30K and I thought another 30K this weekend would be good training for me (plus another 12K later at Augustman Run).

The plan and target were simple. Since this is a time-based run, I run looking at the time and not so much the distance. And I kept my mind occupied and motivated by glancing at the clock monitor which was located at the timing mat area so I know how much time I spent completing each lap.

I did have a pace target somewhat, which was:
First 10K at 1 hour 20 minutes (plus rest stops)
Second 10K at 1 hour 30 minutes (plus rest stops)
Third 10K at 1 hour 40 minutes (plus rest stops)
Subsequent mileage: bonus (but 40K best target)

Yeah, it was a positive split pacing target.

Essentially, I targeted to do 30K within 4 hour 30 minutes mark. Slow and steady. Haha

My category was flagged off at 8.00pm sharp and after running non-stop for one hour 10 minutes, I did a toilet stop and my first drink stop. My second drink stop was 10 minutes later, and I was still able to finish my first 10K faster than my target.
I had started way too fast at first, doing a 6 minutes plus pace so I had to forcefully slow down so that I won’t bonk mid-run.

The night was hot and humid and in no time at all, I was soaking wet with sweat. I was kept entertained during the run with the music the organiser had put on, and also by fellow runners who joined the event and those who came to give support.

My second drink stop was made earlier than planned (I planned to do a drink stop at every 20-30 minutes interval) because a runner/friend/photographer; Tey brought everyone ice cream potong. I had ice cream potong durian and it was so nice.
Another friend, Doc Mimi dropped by at around 11pm and by that time, we were already running for 3 hours and she brought Juice Boost protein shake for me and another GC kaki, Karima. The Doc came to give us support although she herself had a race the next morning, a triathlon in Putrajaya no less! She emerged Champion for her age category too! Congrats Doc Mimi.

I reached my 30K faster than targeted and instead of stopping, I continued on. I kinda told myself that I should do at least one good run for the weekend and do it at UM24 and then do a really slow ass run at Augustman Run instead of two half-arsed effort races. But at that time, I calculated that unless I pushed, I wouldn’t get my 40km target. Maybe 38km at best.

For fuelling, we were served with an assortment of drinks and food at the drink station but despite the gastric issues I faced the whole day that day (forgot how many times I visited the toilet, purging also lah), I survived by drinking the hot milo served at the station plus watermelons & pears. And oh, the ice cream potong. Later, I drank the Juice Boost protein shake and hot milo. Old gastricky tummy cannot drink cold drinks so the hot drinks was a godsend. Absolutely no isotonic or coke consumed during the run for me that night.

There was a special needs table located beside the fuelling station for us runners to place our stuff, and we had each our own space, allocated with a mini printed card that looks exactly like our bib. So senang to locate our place. And all I put there was my gastric medicine, 4 pcs of Torrone barley mint sweets and Doc Mimi’s protein shake. 6-hours race only mah. No need to bring the whole kitchen sink to the race kan? LOL

However, I did stash my stuff for the next day’s race in the luggage drop area located at the bleachers. I also packed some change of clothes to sleep in because I had planned to sleep at the stadium after finishing my run at 2am while waiting for Hubby to pick me up at around 6.00am and go to Augustman Run which was held at Lot 10 together.

About 10 minutes before the 6 hour mark, I saw Hubby standing by the track area. Turned out, instead of sleeping comfortably at home like I told him to do, he actually slept in the car from midnight, while waiting for me to finish. So kesian. I guess he didn’t want to go home but didn’t want to distract me by waiting at the stadium either.

I was walking at the time and he told me to run. And of course I did. Suffer already but Hubby told me to push and I did that final push la. And for the final 2 minutes, I actually tried to sprint to cover as much distance as I could before the horn sounded for us to stop running. We were given a name pad by the crew a few minutes earlier, and when at the 6 hours mark, we need to put the pad on the track to mark our final distance.
A crew later came to calculate each of the runners’ distance for final tabulation.

Hubby had wanted to head home immediately after I finished but I kinda wanted to stay for the award certificate ceremony. Every runner gets their framed certificate with the total distance covered printed and I wanted to collect my certificate the same day instead of returning later.

I was glad I waited because I got a surprise.
I made it to third placing that night! My friend Karima got second placing. Yeay, us! And to think both of us were whatsapping each other prior to the race and having our private drama about running in the event. Kikiki

We finally reached home at 3.00am and I took a one hour nap before getting myself ready for Augustman Run which was flagged off at 6.45am, Sunday morning.

Poor Hubby of course had to wake up too and send me to Lot 10. Poor fella.

While doing the UM24 laps, I kinda wondered why on earth was I doing this but I still kept on looping the track. Karima and I had kinda declared that maybe we shouldn’t repeat this again next year right after we finished our run but all was forgotten after we received our placing trophies. Hahaha

Will I join again next year? Maybe. But I better not sign up for any races on the same weekend like I did this year!

Thank you to the organiser and their crew for a superb race.

Also congrats to Globelink staff (Globelink is the title sponsor for UM24) who joined the run. There were a few of them in my category and some really struggled during the run but every one of them was tenacious and did their best to complete the 6 hour stint. You guys have my respect and I hope I’ll be seeing them again in future races!

Sunday, 22 October 2017

3 Race Day Weekend

It's a busy weekend for us but luckily, I wasn't running in all three races that I attended during the weekend.

The weekend started with Ortho Run which was held in PPUKM and we were there as I promised the technical team that I'd drop over and take some race photos.
With the 10th placed Women Open winner, Jin.

We didn't linger long as I had wanted to settle some work that I was supposed to submit by Sunday so we rushed back home by 10am.
Later in the evening,  we head over to University Malaya because I had UM24 that I joined.

UM24 is an 24-hours, 12-hours and 6-hours endurance around 400m track in UM Arena in University of Malaya. This year, I joined the 6-hour category to get some mileage to prepare for Putrajaya Night Marathon which will be held in two weeks' time.

I ran and tried to cover as much distance as I could within 6-hours between 8.00pm to 2.00am.
And a few hours after completing UM24, Hubby and I made our way to Lot 10 as I also had Augustman Run that I had joined.

Here, with my fellow Gaited Community geng.

Race recaps will be coming soon.

In the meantime, photos taken at Ortho Run 2017 and Augustman 2017 can be viewed at Cik Arnab & En Kura-Kura FB page.

Do LIKE and FOLLOW our page for race updates and photos. ^^

Friday, 20 October 2017

MRT Trip For Augustman Run 2017 REPC

I decided to collect my Augustman Run race kit on Friday, after work instead of going on Saturday because my Saturday will be crazy packed from morning well into late night.
Rather than trying to go through Friday night jam going to Lot 10, where the REPC is held for the run this coming Sunday, we decided to take the MRT.

Hubby had wanted to take the shuttle bus to Pusat Bandar Damansara MRT station but I told him, surely there are parking spaces for cars at the station?
Apparently not. So we parked kinda illegally by the roadside lah, just to use the MRT. huhuhu

But the MRT trip to Bukit Bintang was relaxing and painless. The train wasn't crowded, it was quiet and the trip was fast and pleasant. 

Going out through Pintu D, we came out right in front of Lot 10.
Race kit collection was painless. Just don't forget to fill up the indemnity form before going to collect your kit and/or your friends' race kits too!

And really nice to meet a familiar face there, manning the counter. See you soon at PNM, Idot! ^^
Our His & Hers race bibs for Sunday.

Augustman Run 2017 race kit collection is still on tomorrow on Saturday, Oct 21 2017 from 10.00am to 8.00pm.

Those who has yet gone to collect, don't forget to do so and see you guys on Sunday!

Monday, 16 October 2017

Newton Challenge 2017 30KM

So what do you do when your Polar Training program (that you kinda intermittently follow) requires you to run 2:15 for your long run?
Sorry, blur photo. Lazy to take another one.
I couldn't find any half marathon that was interesting enough (or near our home) to make me join them but one race caught my attention and that's the Newton Challenge 2017.

I joined the 25km category way back in 2012 and had a rather fond memory of it. Finished in 3:06 which was something I was rather happy with, at that time.

Lack of training notwithstanding and with regular training started again only two weeks ago, I had stupidly aimed for a 1:20 for the first 10K, a 1:25 for the second 10K and a 1:30 for the last 10K and with something like a sub4:30 finish or so (4:15 if I pushed). Kononnya la...

The 30km was flagged off a few minutes after 5:30 and just as we started to run, the azan subuh was heard. Some runners quickly made a detour to the nearby surau which was about 1K(?) away from the start line and some head to Petronas. Some, made a stop at a water station to perform their Subuh prayers.

Ah yes, water stations. I wasn't sure at what KM they were located since I didn't really study the route map (anyway, the route was pretty much the same as 2012 other than the additional route included to make it a 30K route) but I was surprised that the first water station was located at KM5.

Luckily, I was feeling good, without much drama (yet) and wasn't in need of a drink that early in the run.

The second water station was located at KM7.5 (do note that this is based on my Polar GPS reading as there were no distance markers along the route, other than the last 5km). Then it was at KM10+ and afterwards it was around KM13, followed by KM17.5 and so on.

The route was well coned off with traffic cones and marshalls were placed all along the route with visible route markers. Unlike way back in 2012 where there were dark stretches, the route is all well lit, 5 years on. The area sudah well developed lah.

I managed to follow the planned 8:00min average pace for the first 10km although I had to resort to walking uphill as early as KM6. And it was still pretty much on pace at KM15.

By the time I reached the first water station, the faster runners had already made a u-turn (one of many u-turns along the route) and a few friends hollered to me as encouragement. Even the pacers! 

After I made the first u-turn, I noticed a few runners cutting short the course. It wouldn't affect their official timing as there were no timing mats or checkpoints at all along the route. 
A few friend had caught up with me and after a short chat, they sped ahead while I just continued with my plodding.

I decided to take an energy gel at KM13 before I continued. It was truly an undulating route and with long climbs at each climb. I dunno why I love it the last time I did it. Hah hah

By KM18 I was a bit behind what I had planned to do but still on pace for a 4:30 finish. But it got progressively slower after that. I started feeling weird at around KM19 but still managed a 3-hour timing at 21K mark. Still surviving although I was a bit annoyed at myself for doing a 3-hour half marathon at that point. 

Trouble reared after that as I finally conceded that I needed a toilet stop. A long stop as tummy was giving me HELL. Luckily I reached Petronas station and I made a 15 minutes stop there. Adoi.

Petronas station stop done and off I went again but this time, I was unable to run again. My heart felt like it was pounding way too fast for my liking so I decided to slow down.

I bumped into another friend farther up along the route as he was going out from a neighbourhood surau for a stop too.

We walked and talked a bit before he sped off and I just continued with my walk. I tried a few times to start running but was feeling rather lousy so I decided not to push it. Got more hills to tackle and I wanted to finish and not collapse in the middle of my run.

KM22 onwards was rather boring and the sun came out in full force by this time. It was nice and cooling earlier and the route shady. Now, it's open and hot! Blergh.

Since I couldn't run, I just made sure I wouldn't walk too slow and managed a 11+ min pace for my walk. By this time I started questioning my sanity of joining anything that's above 21km. LOL

I walked with a fellow runner for the last 2km and we walked and chatted about our run, our next runs and how we don't want to join any more long distance run after this (and then we talked about our races in MKH 12-hour and Bukit Cinta Ultra. LOL)

I have to say, I walked faster with a running (or walking buddy) alongside me and we did an 11:07 pace for KM29, 10:30 pace for KM30 and around 9min pace for the last few hundred metres.

The route was a little bit over-distance but I got a reading of 30.90km. Probably from all the detour made to Petronas station lah.
I reached KM25 at 3:58 (iyer, that's almost an hour slower than what I did in 2012!) and it took me 5-hours to finish. Because I was so slow, there weren't any photographers waiting for us slow pokes at the finish line other than my Hubby. 

Thank you Hubby!

And because we finished after the 5-hours COT (I finished in 5:04), results also tarak. But at least was still given the medal and finisher tee lah.
With Jin and Hubby who had finished HSN21km the night before and tackling Newton 30K on Sunday morning
There were no refreshments available at the finish line so after some photos with friends, we went to Old Town Kopitiam for a drink. 

All in all, as a friend had said, this was a good LSD route. The event itself was really low-key but we were provided with the important basics - water, isotonic, banana, excellent traffic control and crew (both route marshall and water stations crews) and route markers. 

Only thing was, you had to rely on your own GPS watches to know the distance you've covered or ask the crews. 

I'm not sure whether there were any post-race refreshments because I know if there was any, it would've been finished by the time I crossed the finish line anyway.

Even when I did it in 2012, watermelons were almost gone by the time I crossed the finish line. Hahaha
Was it a good experience?

Definitely. I wouldn't have been able to do a 30K on my own at that kind of challenging route myself.

Will I do it again next year. Maybe. If someone sponsor my registration fee. LOL

Anyway, I'll have a very flat route to tackle this Saturday and Sunday at UM24 (it's on UM track) and at Augustman. We'll see how that goes, yeah?

Anyhoo, thank you to all the crews that were so supportive of us runners on Sunday! And don't ask about my rabbit ears lah. Itu sudah retire! LOL

Updates on results and photos taken by Hubby at the finish line can be viewed at Cik Arnab & En Kura-Kura Facebook page. Do LIKE and FOLLOW us!

Sunday, 15 October 2017

Saturday Brunch at IKEA

We had several errands to do on Saturday which included sending Son for his outing with his friends to Pusat Sains Negara (and picking him up later too!) and also collecting my race kit for Newton Challenge on Sunday.

I ditched my plan to join the 10K run at Fit Malaysia@HSN which held that Saturday and did a 5K run around my house instead, before we head out to send Son.

Since the Newton Challenge race kit collection was held at MyTown, Hubby and I had brunch at IKEA. So long never eat there already and I was craving for salmon. So ngam la go there makan salmon.
Hubby had the Pulled Salmon sandwich.
 I had the salmon with that vege cutlet thingy and vege. I love the sauce!
And we finished the meal with this absolutely awesome Salted Caramel Cheesecake (awesome la, it's only RM7.90) with free coffee which I got for being IKEA Family member.

Then it's off to collect my race kit and some shopping at MyTown. Even managed to get a pair of Airism leggings and sports bra which were on promotion. Yeay!
Few hours at MyTown and we  were in Bangsar pulak. 

Before a late lunch later (at 4pm), we had a snack. Auntie Anne's pretzel Buy 1 Get 1 promo from uMobile which Hubby redeemed.

It was only after 6pm that we made or way home. A full day out from home and I had a 30K run on Sunday! Hahahadoi.

But it was rather nice to go out with Hubby and "dating" also lah instead of just making him wait for me to finish whatever race I joined instead, right? ^^

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