Monday, 23 July 2007

fUll MaRathOn exPeriEnce

Cramps!

Cramps!

Cramps!


That's the only thing I was really focused on the night before race day.
I followed the usual carbo-loading scheme, eating 5 small bowls of Yang-Chow fried rice and some hot-pot goodies on the side. :) I also did load up on water and gatorade the day before the race. But still..... nothing could ever make me really anxiety free. I did my usual pre-race preparation before going to bed. hydration belt.... check! running gear.... check! running shush..... check! oh and enough time to sleep.... check! I had a good 8 hours that night.

I woke up at about 2:45am... excited ey! Got some more gatorade and some bread. and off to Quirino Grandstand. This time I was on time. I met Joms, my pace buddy for almost every race, and Totoy, Mon's friend a direct link runner. Joms was still chowing down his usual pre-race meal.... TAHO! :) and Totoy offered some petroleum jelly for anti chafing. The starting gun blasted one minute before the said start time. The temperature was still cool this time. and some parts of the route was dark since some of the street lamps aren't working (only in the Philipines). :) We headed off straight towards the first turn around point, Coastal Mall. Water stations were still full of support and of course water. Joms and I tried to pace slow at the start with walk breaks at either the Water station, uphill portions, or after 15mins of running. That was the plan. :) It did work! well at least for the first 21kms of the race. :)

We were still running the same pace by the time we reached Fort Bonifacio. Until we hit the next turn around point near Bonifacio heights. Something was bothering Joms and he decided to slow down a bit. He insisted that I push forward, and so I did. I was feeling worried by this time since the halfway point is where i usually meet my evil enemy... CRAMPS!

Reaching the last turn around point heritage park-C5 I was still going steady at our starting pace. When I reached 5th street I felt some muscle twitching from both my lower quad muscles. Sh!t!!!!! here it comes! That was what came into my mind the second I felt that twitch. Only this time it came a bit more later in the race. :) hehehe I slowed down my pace and tried to do more stretching stops every kilometer and more walks. By this time(730am) the sun was already high and no clouds was helping us block the heat. To top it all water stations were running out of water! all that was left was the ice cubes in the tub and the cold water where they dump the bottled water in. Just to cool down, i grabbed a few cubes and applied it to my quads and took a nice cool down with the icy water. (I don't know if it will do more help or harm but it sure does feel nice!).

Reaching the kalayaan flyover the twitching is getting more frequent and so does my stretching. I knew that my pace this time wasn't improving since I was with the same group until the last kilometer.

No water station, More heat, More traffic, and more muscle twitching! This was how agonizing the last 12km of the race yesterday. The only thing that was running in my mind was the saying "its the last 6miles that matter!" hehehe but I thought that there's more left but I was just too afraid to hit another cramp experience.
The whole 3km Roxas blvd stretch felt like a 10km race at my pace. But I knew that ever step that I make will take me closer to my finish and every less time i take to recup will shave some time on my PR :) I did stay with the same group until the finish with a time of 4:35:25 I'm still happy that I made it with that time. I have only 40 minutes to shave off. and I know that with more training days to come. I know I can beat my current marathon PR.

If there's one lesson that I learned from this race... it would have to be Run until your legs cramps, you'll never know that you've given it all by being too careful. I hope it all makes any sense. :)

Singapore Marathon 2007 early registration is now open! Anyone interested to join me train for it???


A can of coke and a hotdog after the race! Joms with a 4:40:00 PR!!!! I guess we're doing some more marathon training! :)