Running Hell 3: NB 30K Pacesetters, KL

Jan 2010

Chaos sorting ourselves out in the restaurant. Of course I put myself in the corner and observe!

I call Tigger - "Wanna run a last run with ya this weekend"

Tigger says - "I'm going for Pacesetters this weekend in KL. Come! Bring your shoes and your money. Everything else is settled."

Cool - a Tigger outing! Tigger is an amazing person, who does ironman competitions. His focus on achieving a goal is awesome despite some health problems which is slowing him down.

With his command, I went thinking I would be learning about pace setting! It was instead a running event!!!

Staying within walking distance of China Town, KL, we met up with a bunch of SGR folks and that is when we began to eat. We ate lunch, went for a walk, ate at some roadside stalls, walked over to the padang to pick up race pack, came back (within an hour) and picked up more roadside food. Had to do a 200m walk over to Wimpy as a prequel to dinner!

After all this is Asia where the main priority is to eat and then perhaps run a little and then eat some more! We finish the eating marathon at about 10:30 at night.....after of course a post-rice dinner to recover!!

17th Jan - The start is at 05:30am. Yes races in Singapore and Malaysia seem to start early because of the intensity of the heat and the stifling humidity. I am numb. Brain does not work, I just follow. 04:30am, we walk in well lit roads to the starting point. There are offerings of food. I had 3 kaya jam buns to hopefully set me up for the entire race.

It's dark - how does he know where to lead the pack?

We start in darkness and immediately make our way up a hill. There is very little talk, just the pit patter and thumping of shoes on the ground. My legs just follow without thinking, just listening to fellow runners breathing. Some of the roads we run along have no light and one follows a vague outline, hoping the person in front knows their way.

The drink stations are not accurate. They were suppose to be every 5K. I think one could say they were roughly between 5-8K apart. It made me realise, I didn't need to stop at every drink stop which I had to do for the Singapore marathon.

I was happily taking my time, with very little synaptic action happening in the head. Only took a little pause to watch the elite runners coming back on a loop back of the route.

I was motivated to run a little harder by a guy who's name I forget. Oh well, let's call him Teo and he can kill me later if he ever reads this blog.


Teo: "Hey Rima - you're suppose to run with me"

Me: "My brain is not working so okay." I put in a little effort to keep up with him and the legs are happy with the new speed.

We run the next 2 Ks together. He begins to slow down, but my legs are enjoying the new pace, so I continue at the speed he set. I later see a barefoot man at about 18km. I wonder if he feet were ready for pot holes, newly tarred roads......I mean they were so newly tarred that I could feel the heat coming thru my shoes. I really wondered how he felt.

I meet Martin after the 20km mark. He is making his way down a hill slowly. Did I mention this is a pretty hilly route? I call out to him on my way down - legs were moving rapidly.

At about 25km the sun is starting to warm things up. I know I've got to keep moving so that am not caught in the sun. Lionel springs out from no where and runs a km with me. He is tired and wants to slow down. I remind him I am an old woman and as a young man, he should be able to stay with me and beat me at the end. He continues, until a water stop appears! He stopped for water!!!

I catch up with Timothy who is ambling along. He volunteers with "Rima the only water I've got for you is my spit". "Ewww" I think....."Timothy - I have water too - but you won't like it......" I was thinking sweat!!!

I meet another gal, who had done so well and decides to start walking about 3km from the end. I try to encourage her to keep going and she does until we hit another hill. In the last couple of Ks, I see Claire who is struggling a little. I certainly did not expect to see Claire until the finish line. She says "let's finish the race together", I reply "sure, but we sprint to the end". She agrees.

And we sprint together all the way to the finish watermelon, breakfast, hot milo drink, more drinks, more food, a box of cake - all free!!! With meeting everyone, the race was pretty fine without the previous 2 feelings of heat exhaustion, etc.

The last photo is of a chappy who joined us for our eating orgy and came third in the men's vets, completing the 30K race in just over 2hrs.

Thank you to Tey once again for recording the day's events.