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Wednesday, 19 October 2011

T-N-F! breaking ALL boundaries!

InYourFace at TNF

“All I want..is to cross the finish line..” Sick smile

My running experience can still be considered in its infancy. If you have been following jurnalari, my first race was just over a year ago. Throughout the period, my toughest experience would be during my 1st full marathon at the Energizer Night Race 2011 in Sepang. That was how it stayed, until TNF.

When the registration opened some time back in April (or was it May Nana?), I never had the slightest intention to even care about it, let alone joining it. Hey it was a trail race, 25km (or 50km), it would be hard, my legs and body would be able to take it. However on that night at Shanaz’s place during her ‘Parti Liar’, Nana asked if I would like to be her partner for TNF (thank god it was only 50km Duo), and unexpectedly I duly said yes. Our team would be named InYourFace.

‘What have I done???’

So, fast forward.

As usual, the race venue was already buzzing when we arrived. It was still an hour or so to go before the start time at 10 am. So we did our usual thing before a run. No, it was not the warm-ups, it was taking photos!!! Open-mouthed At around 9:30 we saw a familiar face walking towards us. It was the hero Yim. He and Karen had just completed their 100km Duo. They were at that time attempting to do a near-impossible feat to complete 50km in the 100km Duo, and a full marathon in the Putrajaya Night Marathon later that night, all in less than 24 hours.

Teams checking in!Team InYourFace, Thundercatz and CrazyScorpio

Crazy Yim!With Yim

At about 9:45 am we trudged our way towards the starting point. By the time we reached there, the pen was already full with runners. After weighing our bags (we were supposed to bring minimum 1.5l of water in our hydration bag), we moved into the runners pen. Honestly I did not know what to expect, but the searing heat, even before the race even started, would have a huge impact towards how my race would pan out later. The gun sounded at exactly 10 am, but our position at the back meant we only crossed the start line 3-4 minutes after that.

StartingTeam InYourFace talking strategy? No? Smile with tongue out

There was no apparent strategy for Nana and I. The most we could think of was to run 4km, then walk or slow jog 1km. Not sure if we would stick by that, but that was the mutual agreement we had. In the beginning it was quite a breeze. We were running in shades so the effect of the heat was not too obvious. However the humidity and the terrain combined kind of sapped my energy faster than usual. I just kept myself to an easy pace, and made sure the team stayed together. By the time we reached 4km, we decided that we could still continue another kilometer before keeping to our strategy to walk or slow jog a kilometer.

At 5km, the terrain was getting more and more unforgiving, and I was getting more and more exhausted. I felt not even a bucket-load of isotonic would be able to fuel me. After only 5km?? ‘This is bad’, I thought. If you are a runner, or if you do any sports, you would know that your body has reached the limit, no matter at which stage of a race. In my case, my body was already reaching the limit, if not yet. My heart rate was beating irregularly, there were occasional chest pains, and I could not breath properly. As much as I hated it, I took the decision to walk until I reach the 1st WP (Water Point), which according to the Runner’s Guide, was merely less than 2km away. Nana at this time, was already not too far in front.

Upon reaching the 1st WP, I took as much isotonic as I could, from the hydration bag, and the WP itself. Here we caught up with CatMan (Saiful), one half of Team Koyuck, and Nana and Agus. We runners were taking this opportunity to try to rejuvenate by having a good laugh among ourselves, hoping it would make us forget the grueling tasks yet to come. We even took some photos.

At WP1Selly, Agus, Nana and I at WP1. We look so happy! Look at Nana! Rolling on the floor laughing

We restarted our journey a few minutes later. I continued my running and walking as my body did not have as much strength as I wanted it to be. Pity Nana, as she had to also do the same thing, an unspoken pact of not to leave your partner behind. The further and deeper the trail goes, the more I feel frustrated about it. It got a lot worse when you run on tracks which were not shaded by trees or obstacle, the sun right on top of your head. Thoughts of DNFing played constantly in my mind. But thoughts of the team, those doing 50km, other runner friends, eliminated all those, and I decided I would pull through all adversities and just complete the race.

About 3 hours after we started, we reached the 2nd WP. All I hoped for was to refill the hydration bag, gulp some nice cups of cold 100plus, and bananas. It would be better if there were McDonald’s, or Burger King Smile with tongue out. Well, guess what. There were none. No water, no 100plus, which would be the most important at this heat and condition. After 15 or so km of running, no fuel for the runners. WTF?! I was too tired to even talk (yeah, I was probably the quietest runner in the event), I could not reserve some of my harshest comments to the organizers, but I know Nana and Selly did! Open-mouthed smile

The final 10km would be the hardest ever for me. The brain was already half functioning at this point. Nana, who had been strong throughout, but so kind to still stay with me, took the wise and fair decision to run with Agus, while Selly would accompany me until finish. I feel it was a valiant effort from Selly to keep me in the race. She never failed to provide the humour, although she was also tired at that time, just to ensure I would stay awake for the remaining kilometers. I was so tired, I could not even laugh at her jokes. And to think at that same time we had to push ourselves for the 4.5 hours cut-off time, I think it was unbelievable of her, and eventually of us.

We finally crossed the finish line 4 hours 40 minutes later. I finally left the torturous, arduous 25km of dirt, mud, sweat and blood behind. To just say “Thank you Selly” would be an understatement, but it was all due to her that I managed to complete the toughest race so far in my life. Well, it might not be 50km or 100km as what some of us did, it might ONLY be 25km, but the courage and grit of everyone doing the event must not be underestimated, regardless of the category.

Dashing at the home straightMy face tells the whole story as I was being ‘pulled’ by Selly at the home straight

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Usually this won’t be a problem for me

At the finishing lineSelly still fresh as if nothing had hit her at the finishing line

TNF Medal
The coveted medal (it’s ONLY 50!)

I would to congratulate some of the runner whom I know personally; Yim and Karen (My Ultra Oldies) for their amazing feat completing both TNF 100km Duo and Putrajaya Night Marathon in less than 24 hours. The other 100km Duo Teams; Macam Bagus (Ian & Ijam), Geng Bas Sekolah (Syah & Kash), RayDeo (Ray & Deo), Blissterra (Dzul & Cynthia), and those who did the 50km Duo; Thundercatz (Irwan & Shanaz), CrazyScorpios (Agus & Selly), Koyucks (Saiful CatMan & Fazli). And to the others who participated, congratulations for the courage to even run. Be right back

Well Done!WELL DONE! Smile

Selly aka Senorita G (or is it Sellypura now? Hot smile), thank you for literally dragging me back home. Without you, I doubt I would make it. Oh yeah, and thanks for the accommodation too!

Nana aka Princess G, thank you for the chance. We might not finish together, which would be the most ideal thing to do, but without you, I would not even be at the starting line. Smile WE DID IT!!

To the other group of running friends; namely the Gs and the RBU geng, thank you for the inspiration.

And to Azu, thanks for just being there, for me, for each one of us. Left hug

“All I wanted..was to cross the finish line..” Winking smile

Saturday, 15 October 2011

break all boundaries!

The North Face 100 Singapore

GOOD LUCK TEAM INYOURFACE!
Be right back

Thursday, 13 October 2011

Tuan Senang Besar :’(

Al-Fatihah
Kharis Idris
Tuan Senang Besar
TeeAssBee

There are not that many words that should be said Striaght Face

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TSB at the rightmost. You’ll be missed dearly my dear friend. May Allah bless your soul.

trail weekend in Singapore! :D and a birthday to celebrate..

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In the next three days, I will not only be doing 1 trail race, but 2 trail races on the island of Singapore. This Saturday, Nana and I are partnering for the team InYourFace, together with a host of avid runner friends will hit the trails of Singapore in the 2011 TNF100 (The North Face 100). The Singapore Leg will be the 4th of its kind to be held in the Asia Pacific region, after the Philippines, Taiwan and Australia. The final 2 legs will be held in Japan (November) and Thailand (TBC, most probably in February 2012). There are 3 main categories here in Singapore; 100km Solo, 100km Duo, and 50km Duo. The many crazy ones Peace Sign are doing the 100km Solo, or running half century distance with their partner to complete the 100km Duo. Ray and Deo, Syah and Kash, Ijam and Ian, Frank and Jeff, are some of the prominent ones doing this. Yim and Karen meanwhile, will try to do the unthinkable. They will bring their Running for Orang Asli cause up to a new level by attempting to finish the 100km Duo, then fly back to Putrajaya in time for the Putrajaya Night Marathon. That’s 2 full marathons in 24 hours! Madness!! Surprise Oh by the way, their video is up in the running in a competition, please vote for their cause here.

We will run the 50km Duo (of course!! Tongue), anything above a full marathon distance is still beyond my logic at the moment! So Nana and I, Shanaz and Irwan, Selly and Agus…ermm, maybe next year? or the leg after this? TNF Thailand? Big Grin

100km Solo & Duo Map100km Solo & Duo Route

50km Duo Map50km Duo Route

The next day a few of us will be running in another trail race, the New Balance Real Run 2011. Not to be overshadowed by the more illustrious event in TNF, the Real Run is quite interesting where participants will run on different surfaces over the course. 10km; 2km Trail, 1.5km Sand, 6.5km Road. I guess this will be more of a recovery run for some of us, after the grueling experience the day before. But for Azu, this will be your birthday run yeah!! HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU!! Birthday CakeParty

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

nike we run kuala lumpur 10.10.10

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Remembrance from last year’s Nike We Run Kuala Lumpur

adidas king of the road 2011

KOTR

I signed immediately when the event was announced few months back. Little did I know that the course would be part of the NPE which would be dull and had the potential to bore me to death. Smile with tongue out

The day started early as the plan was to be at Sunway around 5 am, as the roads leading there would be closed by then. True enough, when we reached there the NPE was already closed. We had to park a distance away at Sunway Mentari, where limited parking slots were available.

Before Race

The runners’ assembly area were filled with familiar faces. The G’s this time decided to wear black top with camouflage running skirts, which made them look like they are going to entertain the American army boys in Afghanistan or something. Open-mouthed smile LOL! Kidding girls. But without doubt, they attracted the most attention, making it easier to get yourself into the camera if you’re with them.

The 16.8 km category flagged off at 6:45am. Due to the nature of the route, I decided not to push myself too much for this one. After all, the finisher medals were not limited here as with the previous races. A target finish time of 1:40-ish, meaning an easy-peasy pace of just below 6 mins/km would suffice. Be right back Crowd was aplenty, and it took us 4-5 minutes to reach the start line after the gun went off.

The route was dull yes, it was a straight 2.5 km and back..and another 6km or so and back to the finish line, making it a full 16.8 km loop. But the rolling inclines made it quite a challenge. There were a number of them, and although the gradient was not big, but they were long and would punish your legs and brain if you’re not used to it! Crying face

The organization of the race was smooth. The water stations were aptly placed every 3 km, exactly like mentioned in the runners’ guide. Weather was also okay, except the humidness which caused you to want to drink a lot. Well, it’s Malaysia what do you expect! Sun

After 1 hour and 36 minutes of running, I finally crossed the finishing line. It’s always nice when you finish and then someone put the medal around your neck, saying “Congratulations, you did well!”, regardless you finished 1st, 2nd or 3rd, or even 250th, or 2,500th! Makes you feel it was worth it. Good to also know there are many who achieved their PeeBees in the race. Congratulations to them.

The..Js?

Oh, by the way, I so love the medal! Winking smile

The Medal

The after-race activities were always the best. Meeting with friends, making new friends, the photos, and of course, always the food..THE food! Hot smile A memorable one this one. Now to the more serious one..in 12 days, TNF!! Surprised smile

Saturday, 1 October 2011

first look at the shirt..

imageteaser!!

For those who are wondering what the design will be like for this year’s Nike We Run KL 10K, visit RUNNING with PASSION for a first look. Hot smile Thank you Pueh Tian for providing some insights. Be right back

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