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Saturday, July 10, 2010

KL Marathon 2010

Here is the final piece of the KL Marathon 2010 story that I promised. My wife snapped away hundreds photos and it took me forever to sort it out. Finally I have some time to throw it up the web but beware, this post is heavy with images. She did some very good job, let's go and take a look.

The KL Marathon is held on 27th June 2010, and a week after the run, I felt much more energetic and younger. I believe that's the main reason why there are so many people joined marathon, it keeps them rejuvenated and having a sense of achievement. We left house quite late and it's already over 4am, so most major road is closed. We left with the only choice to take up the Padang Merbok parking area, but by the time we reached there at 5.30am, it's already full packed! We drove around and parked at a spot very far away. It think it's almost 3km away, sigh, thought of saving my energy for the run. Failed.

Here is the scene at Dataran Merdeka at 5.30am. Bear in mind that the full marathon & half marathon runners have already left the place, but it's still very much packed! My guess is right that more than 50% of participants is into the 10km run, but it's a little over my imagination. As adviced by sifu, I quickly find the location of toilet and take the queue.

Then I set-up my mp3 gear and consumed the 1st pack of the Power Gel. I read online that the Power Gel is the worst taste stuff you can eat but yet it will help tremendously. It's not that bad, but it's funny thing. A very thick paste of chocolate with slight twist of lemonade taste, just like melted chocolate bar. I drank a little water to wash it through my mouth, a mistake. Read on.

The light is off and it gunned off at around 7.15am. A little late and I waited. People starting lining up since 6.50am and they waited 30 minutes. I'm standing around warming up with my wife, and I got pushed backwards. The crowd is so large that it took me 7 minutes to reach the starting line after the gun off. Crazily packed!

Here is a nice view of the starting line that my wife snapped. Incredible skill. Never thought she can get this kinda shot. Surprise, but there is more. As I started my run, she wonder around snapping more photos. Here it is for your eyes only.

A clear shot of the starting & finishing line with Bangunan Sultan Abdul Samad or known as Federal Court as the background.

A big TV set-up around the Dataran Merdeka field. There are also lots of tents set-up from the sponsor giving freebies, massage tents and etc.

I think this shot is quite nice, hand held, and good angle. What you think?

She is putting my teaching in use, twisting the angle for a new twist of perspective. Nice.

I studied my running route earlier and I told my wife to intercept me at the KTM building. It's almost 5km into KTM building and I estimated 30-40 minutes to get there. By the time she reached there, runners already crossing over, fast. She thought she missed me, and she waited.

More 10km runners continue to cross the building. No sight of me.

And after a while, there I come =) Yea, I'm quite slow comparing to most people. I consider myself doing not bad because I'm quite fat & heavy. To keep up the pace running non-stop, it's quite crazy.

Ok so here is the continue story after I crossed the starting line. I'm all in mood but the crowd is crazily a lot. Imagine 7.30am at Federal Highway! I'm all up and with my favourite hip songs pumping, I zip-zapped around to get ahead, importantly to avoid slowing down by others from my comfortable pace. Bad news, after 1km, I felt dry. Resulted from the Power Gel that I ate earlier. It's so thick and I felt thirsty after few minutes into running. My only rescue is the first water supply at 4km point. I made my way and I'm totally exhausted reaching the Tun Sambathan. I pushed it and crossed into Federal Highway.

After a while, I saw the water supply stop, then I know I'm already at 4km point. I grab a cup of 100 plus and a cup of water. Throat down the 100 plus followed by the water, arrrgghh... nice. I felt mush better. My muscles started to feel the pain and I reached my limit, so I started to walk on the Federal. However, somehow I felt like a loser because there is not much people walking around, including some elderly & ladies. It actually help to push myself through because of ego. I mixed up walking & running till I reached the KTM and met my wife. Phew...

So back into the Power Gel thing, make sure you drink lots of water after consuming it to avoid feeling dry. It's actually very thick but is it helpful? Result reviewed after the 2nd shot.

That's me crossing the KTM building. Spotted? Easy, the fat guy that's having difficulty raising his feet.

My wife playing around with the shutter for some motion effects.

She hang around and there off the 5km group nearby the Malaysia Railway Department.

Look at the crowd! She told me that she climb quite high to get this shot, now that's a true photographer =)

In continuing my story, after the KTM is a nightmare. That's where we started to run into Jalan Lembah that lead us up the hill till the Panggung Anniversari. It's uphill all the way and I struggled. My bodyweight is dragging me down and I walked a lot. With the crowd around, I pushed and finally reached the Jalan Parlimen. I'm surviving just with my hip songs pumping forgetting everything else.

A while over and I see the best thing of my life, the 2nd water supply point. That means I'm already into 8km of the race. I'm still ok and feeling I'm definitely able to complete the entire 10km. I didn't bring my watch so I'm not sure how I'm doing. Looking at the crowd front of me, I think I'm not doing good. I took out my 2nd Power Gel and threw it in. Again, I grabbed a cup of 100 plus and a cup of water. I think I'm doing good with left over energy, so I thought I should punch it fully for the 2km.

The question is the power gel helpful? I never eat breakfast and I don't feel hungry with my Power Gel plan. I don't think it help to boost my energy but it does help by keeping me having enough calories to burn. Will I buy Power Gel for my next run? Definitely. It's only RM6 each pack, cheap for a sense of achievement. Better be safe than sorry =P

I started to increase my pace but after I crossed the DBKL building into Jalan Raja Laut, I'm all out! I ran out of breath and I can see the finishing line nearby DBKL turning. Not good, so I keep my pace back. The final 2km is the worst that I almost give up. Knowing it's just after the corner, I continue to push my body forward. Jammed up the volume and I pursued. Finally, I'm at the final meters with finishing line in my eye sight. I increase my pace and crossed the finishing line.

I crossed the finishing line but I can't find my wife. She spotted me and started snapping. I'm totally exhausted and I missed her location. I quickly charge to the water supply area and grabbed some drinks. Am I qualify? Here is my result.

Rank: 1209
Category: 10km Individuals
Gun Time: 1 hour 19 minutes 35 seconds (gun-to-finish time)
Net Time: 1 hour 12 minutes 54 seconds (start-to-finish time)

It's well within my targetted time of 1 hour 14 minutes! Incredible, my legs muscles are killing me and I'm all wet from the sweat. But I'm so happy with my result. I basically stopped running since college and gained lots of weight. It's an incredible feeling.

I got to her and she snapped the close shot of the aftermath.

After the finishing line, all runners are directed to category tents where we will get our medal. I asked where is the certificate and they told me they will send it to my house. Off I go.

Me with my medal. My first medal of 10km marathon. A nice add-on to my jogathon medal since college time.

Ok, remember about the freebies tents that I'm talking about? While waiting for my friend, we wonder around and notice this funny thing that everyonee is sticking to their nose. It's called Breath Right Nasal Strips and we quickly went over to get a free test piece. It's sticky with loaded spring plate that help to push your nose outwards and increase the breathway. I personally think it's not that helpful, but my wife loves it. I got a box at RM10, not sure if she is going to use it. We posed with these funny faces, our relationship nature. Just a cute couple and she wanted it in the post, so here we go.

After that, I took over the camera and it's my turn to play with the international event. =)

Kids session started, and this particular kid strike it nicely with his red adidas pant.

Cute little girl smiling at me when her mum jogging her over for the family session run.

You know there is a saying that photographer loves to snap photos of another photographer taking photo? Saw a professional, and can't help. Very stylish.

A mixture of full marathon, half marathon & 10km runner. Notice the age & category group? Incredible the elder man is finishing the marathon so early together with the half marathon & 10km runner! This kind of shot keep me going.

After a while, more elder men & women shows up. Very incredible.

In full marathon, there are pacer that finished the run in a specific time frame. This guy is a 4 hours 30 minutes pacer for full marathon and if you target to finish in that duration, keep up with him! Pacer is available in every 30 minutes.

Testing skill of panning, satisfied but still need improvement.

My another attempt of shot.

While waiting for my friend, spotted a full marathon runner that cramped and stopped right at the crossroad, only a few hundred meters away from the finishing line. He got up later and finished it!

That's my friend doing 21km. He looks happy and as I'm calling him before and after my run, he is answering it. When I asked him where is him, he said "I think I'm 5km away". My reaction is, what the hell is this fella carrying his handphone in a 21km run?? He even kept 50 bucks in his pocket, saying just in case. What case, like someone that will  hurt you if you got no money in the middle of a marathon? Crazy fella, and he is planning for a full marathon by end of the year. I'm trying to keep up =)

That's the last shot before I head for home. My muscles are painful for continuous 2 days and I recover after that. It's an incredible experience and I would say this is very hard, even with my experience in reaching the peak of Kinabalu mountain. It's all about stamina & persistence in keeping your goal. I strongler recommend this to everyone. I weighed 90kg and if I can do it, I don't see how anyone else can't. Try out the 5km if you are interested, then move on when you feel more confident.

I'm definitely going back, my target is to finish another 10km run within 1 hour and then I will upgrade myself to 21km run to meet the 3 hours requirement. I hope I can achieve that by end of this year. Wish me luck!

And here is a big thank you to my wife for supporting me throughout the run and snapping beautiful photos for me. Thanks!

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