Tuesday, February 23, 2010

4 days to go...

Tomorrow I leave for Langkawi.

The bike has been packed up and sent to Langkawi. Most of my race gear is in the bag. Just a few things more to pack.

The training is done... well, not really but there's not much I can do about it now. Let's just hope that what is done is enough. I do feel stronger than last year, I've spent more time in the pool (even got a coach!), the cycling legs feel strong, the running legs are feeling ok.

But there's still a nagging doubt in the back of my head. Come race day, I'll need to try and shove this doubt out of my mind and send it away somewhere. Just gotta remember to think positively and have happy thoughts (how you're going to have happy thoughts while suffering in 40 degree heat is another matter altogether!)

On the plus side, this year, for the first time, my kids will be coming to cheer me on, so that is definitely motivation for me to finish. Hopefully, the rule about bringing your family down the chute to the finish line is not enforced here so I can cross the line with them.

To all those participating this year, good luck and all the best. Stay safe and enjoy the race. To all friends who's taking the effort to fly up and lend us support, thank you from the bottom of my heart. Your support is greatly appreciated.

See you all in Langkawi!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

A little gem :)

came across this little gem going through my hard drive. enjoy :)

Monday, February 8, 2010

The Longest Half

That's the best way to describe my Putrajaya Night Marathon.

I only ran the half but it was probably the longest half I've ever run.

I pretty much konked out at kilometre 4 when I stopped at the water station to get a drink. Suddenly felt like I couldn't breathe. My lungs were burning and I just couldn't seem to get any air into them. My head was spinning, and I felt ready to pass out. I was ready to quit.

Then Mac came along. He yelled, "C'mon Arif! Move it! Just walk!"

And so I did. Till about kilometre 7.5 where I saw Senn giving encouragement to other runners. Was she a sight for sore eyes! Sat with her for a good 10 minutes, contemplating giving up. It was quite a sight: she yelling encouragement to the other runners, me next to her half dead, with my head in my hands.

After puking my guts out, I decided to just continue. Slowly. And so I set off to finish the next 13.5 kilometres. It was going to be a long night.

But it was like Senn breathed new life into me. I was actually able to run! I couldn't hold the pace I was doing earlier but at least I was running again. Lungs were still burning but it was more manageable than before.

Soon I was passing people who passed me earlier. I still couldn't run all the way though, still had to walk a bit up those nasty hills.

At the top of the last hill, there was Senn again. Abu was with her this time and they looked like they were having a picnic. I stopped and joined them. After a few gulps of water and some grapes, Abu and I set off to finish the last 6 kilometres. We were keeping a steady pace and talking about aero helmets and aerobars for Langkawi. Of course, I wasn't able to keep up with Abu's pace, so I guess he must have ended up talking to himself!

Finally got down to the Boulevard. But the race wasn't over yet. The organisers, who thought we hadn't suffered enough, gave us a little detour round the back of the Palace of Justice. So close, yet so far away! Never mind, just keep on going.

Finally there it was: the finish line. I crossed it, grabbed my post-race goodies and found a spot to just collapse and lay down. That finish was like coming back from the dead. Literally. I don't know how I did it, from a near-collapse at kilometre 4 to a finish 17 kilometres later. It must have been the angel on a pink bike named Tortue that helped breathe life back into me. Thanks babe.

It's now three times in a row that I haven't been able to put together a decent long run. I've either had to cut short the run, or suffer some kind of ailment. With Ironman looming just a little over two weeks away, this is worrying. Some people tell me I'm fatigued, but how can I be fatigued when I took the whole of last week off (see previous post)? So if I can't put a decent stand-alone 20-30k run together, what hope do I have of putting a full marathon together after a 180 kilometre bike? I suspect this year's target of having to run the entire marathon will be scrapped.

I'm worried...

Thursday, February 4, 2010


This week was a total non-starter.

Monday's planned 30k run was cut short. First to 20k as I started then finally at the 6k mark, I called it quits. Nothing was working: legs, lungs, heart, mind all refused to cooperate.

The only other training I did this week was a two-hour gym session on Wednesday. That's it.

Tonight's turbo class and tomorrow's spin class will have to be called off because my son fell ill. Not that I'd have the strength to go through with it anyway.

I shudder to think what this Saturday's half marathon will be like. Hope I'm rested enough for it.

I guess the 19-hour week (including Saturday's monster 200k ride) last week is taking its toll.

Ironman Langkawi is three weeks away. This does not look good.