Wednesday, November 27, 2013

PENANG BRIDGE INTERNATIONAL MARATHON 2013 : FULL MARATHON WOMEN'S OPEN

Last year, I made a commitment to run a full marathon. Here's a recap of my virgin FM experience at the Penang Bridge International Marathon 2013.

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As many of you would have read, I publicly declared on this blog that I was done with endurance running. I don't think I'll ever go back to doing hours upon hours of cardio, several times a week. Nevertheless, I'll probably continue to do short runs around my neighbourhood and sign up for marathons every once in a while to give myself goals to work towards. Besides, marathons are fun! 

Outfit laid out, bib pinned on. Let's go!


Since the FM was flagging off at 2am, Yong Xiang and myself headed to Queensbay mall at 1am. The atmosphere was already vibrant and upbeat. The rain which had been pouring down in torrents a few hours prior had petered down to a weak drizzle, and the air was refreshingly cool.


We made our way towards the starting line 15 minutes before guntime. I stood there bouncing up and down on my toes as the clock ticked by.


The atmosphere rose to fervour as the minutes turned into seconds. And we were off! 

Here's a map of our route 


The first water station we passed.


Saw this man running while pushing a person in a wheelchair. There was another guy running with 3 adorable small dogs but I didn't manage to get a picture as he was in another category on an opposing route.


Hordes of runners swarming across the bridge.


I'd been running alone since the start, so I was fortunate to fall into step with an elderly indian man (he told me he was pushing 60) and chatted with him as we ran. He shared that he'd only started running in his 30s and consistently participated in races ever since.

I kept up a steady running pace until about 23km, which was when I started to feel some discomfort in my knees. Bade goodbye to Gunar and started to alternate between cycles of running and walking.

This picture was taken when we were returning from the mainland, heading towards the island.


Tried to do a jumpshot but failed.


28km : They were handing out Power Gels but I didn't take any. 


30km : asked two boys to help me snap a picture with the sign. Asked them if they wanted to get a picture too ; they very tiredly said "No need." Left them behind as I continued to run-walk. However, shortly after that the pain in my knees increased so I stopped running  altogether and started walking briskly. 


33 km : the sky was light and traffic was moving on roads.


I made sporadic attempts to resume running, but whenever I would do so my knees would act up again. Nevertheless I pressed on wholeheartedly and kept walking as fast as I could.


35 km : Gosh, has it been only 2 km since the last sign? Oh well, let's take a picture of it too.



Loving some random inspiration.


Time limit for the FM category was 7hours. I made it, just barely in 6:57! 

Justin very kindly came back for me after his HM. Congrats on your HM as well. :)


Clowning around taking pictures


Who cares what all these people think, I'll never see them again anyway.


The finisher tee and medal.


There goes another one off the bucket list.

Onward to the next adventure! 





                        

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