But apparently the excitement didn't last long.
Due to family commitments & planning / other race commitments / injury / other matters....most of my running sistas opted not to join this time around. Ala sangat berbeza lah dengan suasana tahun lepas yang amat seronok.
And I was thinking:
1) Nak masuk full jugak ke? Mesti lah kot, anniversary tu.
2) Nak lari dengan pacer jugak ke? Bila nak lari sorang-sorang ni?
3) Route Shah Alam tu banyak naik turun, sanggup kah?
But I signed up anyway, one day before the early bird deadline :P
And I trained, maybe not as diligent as my first full marathon last year, tapi buat jugak lah short / tempo / fartlek / long runs...and that dreaded 30km run yang melengkapkan Syarat-syarat Training Full Marathon.
I even did a 10km run (and walked also la of course) up Kem Lolo at Nuang, a week before the race.
*okay lah maybe this is not so gempak lah :P *
But then the on & off haze became really bad during the week of the race. And my husband had to go to Jakarta for work, again. So no running or exercise at all for me that final week sebab macam extra letih dengan house chores & layan kerenah anak-anak. And I actually believed that MWM2014 on 16th March 2014 would be cancelled due to the haze. *kenapa entah terasa lega pun ada hahah*
AND because I did not jenguk my favourite running shoe for like a week...I just noticed the right shoe tip had a sompek. *nasib baik cobbler boleh tampal, RM5 saja*
AND because the wind blew away the smog a day before the race, the organizer announced "yes ladies it's all systems go for tomorrow!"
|This photo does not show the severity of sompek on the shoe.|
Alamak. Jadi pulak nak lari 42km esok? I had to psyche myself up that evening...like my youngest daughter always say, "Laats dudis!!" (translation: "Let's do this!")
Psyched! Pumped! Excited! (especially after chatting away dengan kawan2 Krazirunners kat whatsapp). Laats dudis!!
And so there I was driving along Federal Highway at about 3.15am Sunday morning, looking for the exit nearest to the race venue when suddenly....I noticed that the haze is back. Complete with the smell of something burning.
|Muka2 'before'. Suzie, me & Ijam my pacer. Suzie said she was going to run a few km & then turn back. Ya jerebu memang teruk jugak masa ni. (Photo credit Arman Arshad)|
During my search for the porta-loo during my compulsary-toilet-visit-before-running, I saw Ina (Being Mom on The Run) and quickly we greeted each other. First time jumpa tapi recently I began reading her blog...and boy she's one fast lady!
True enough, during the run, she inched away further and further ahead of me...until I lost sight of her completely. (I really need to work on my walking breaks) #excuses
However, a few minutes before the full marathon category was flagged off at 4.45am, the race director made an announcement that MWM 2014 was to be a non-competitive run instead. If we think that we couldn't take the smog, we could turn back whenever we wanted to. There would be no winners, no ranking. It was us to decide how far we wanted to run.
And at that point my pacer & I still had 42km in our minds. Wahh. #ambitiousnyaaa
Start je lari, my friend May Cheong caught up with me & said she'll be running a few km only also & turn back. I think the last time I met her was during race pack collection MWM2013...huh setahun? Sigh.
Going to the first km, terserempak dgn otai ultra runner Abang Zg Zakaria with his pacee, Gloria Mack (sorry ahkak tak tahu nama sebenar...). He usik my pacer's "signature Gatorade bottle in right hand":P
|See the bottle in his right hand? Kalau tak jumpa botol Gatorade dia, he'll be a bit menggelabah. Hehe. (Photo credit Running Malaysia Magazine)|
I tumpang energy gels & my carkeys & apa entah lagi in Ijam's SPIbelt and with his stuff also, he said his belt dah macam rupa ular telan kambing. Or was it macam telan buaya? Penampar buaya...?? #oops
It's always important to train as often as you can with your pacer, especially if you haven't ran any races with him/her. So boleh tahu rentak dia macamana, in running & also keselesaan di antara pacer-pacee.
(You don't want to suddenly hate your pacer, during a race, while he or she is pushing you uphill...or in my case downhill pun kena tolak jugak sebab "kata nak PB untuk KM10 nanti...??")
And no I didn't PB my 10km. Sampai KM10 at 1:10. And then I started feeling uncomfortable. There was no wind, the air was obviously polluted....I felt heaty.
Around KM13, I think, I began to feel slight chest pains. Aduh tak pernah pulak rasa macam ni masa berlari. It was the haze lah apa lagi. #degillaginaklari
Bumped into Ijam's friend, Misni, who steadily caught up with us (and potong us after a bit of borak-borak). She said she pun tak larat & was hoping the route we were on would end at KM21, which it was of course since full marathon runners kena lari one more loop of the same route to complete a 42K.
|Around KM15 I was already thinking to myself "Oh mannnnn I don't know if I could repeat this loop all over again!" Tapi masa tu takut nak cakap kat Pacer.|
"You guys buat full ke...?", Misni asked us. Sebelum si pacee ni sempat cakap "errr tak sure lagi.....", si pacer pula cepat jawab, "Yes!". #ehhh #whatthe
Eventually, I did tell Ijam....I sakit dada sikit lah / macam makin tebal jerebu / macam tak larat nak buat satu loop lagi (Oh My Excuses) so we decided to end our journey at half marathon distance. Terus si pacee bersemangat nak pegi kat start/finish line & lari laju sikit.
|Muka happy sebab yeayyy 21km pun jadi lah!!! (Photo credit Enaikay)|
|Belum sampai seminit cross finish line dah ada Arman menunggu dengan kamera. So muka masing-masing erm errr capek sikit lah. (Photo credit Nannoor)|
Speaking of Nannoor, she is now 6 months pregnant but still runs regularly. She registered for the 10km category but looking at the bad haze, she decided to join the 5km fun run instead (hari tu macam sesuka hati sukasuki je semua nak lari berapa jauh..best! Hehe). I didn't expect her to say, "Jom Kak Millie, teman i lari!". Kak Millie yang masih adrenalin rush gitu tiba-tiba kata "Okay!"
|Dah lama tak run dengan Nannoor. I still miss the days when we ran our 10K's...which were a very big deal to us back then. (Photo credit Run & Explore)|
But we cut it short to 3km instead sebab my calf macam ada 'tangkap' sikit & the haze was really quite bad. Kesian si ibu mengandung.
|Very very nice shot of the preggy runner :) . Nasib baik non-competitve run. Kalau tak mesti disqualified sebab bib full marathon tapi lari half marathon & lepas finish line lari fun run pulak...(Photo credit Chan Wk)|
|Selesai berlari, minum milo 5 cawan & 2 cawan Nescafe panas & makan semangkuk Fitnesse cereal, kita bergambar pula.|
|When he said "nanti kat KM21 makan gel satu lagi tau" (before we decided to do a half only), I thought "aduhai aduhai betul ke nak lari habis full ni....?" #drama|
|Met an long-time-no-see friend, Islah, who I first met in year 2000, masa baru kahwin & kerja sama2 kat Technology Park Malaysia. She did her 10K that day! Still looking stylish & vogue like before :)|
|Met with my pacer's childhood friends also, Mazni & Sara. Such a nice event, where all women runners get to meet. Ada lagi yang jumpa tapi tak sempat pulak nak bergambar.|
|Everyone was allowed to take the finisher items they were entitled to (should they finish the whole distance, but obviously most didn't). I gave my bib for the lucky draw jadi dapat tunjuk bib #PacerWithRotan je lah kat sini.|
2 hours 31 minutes. All in all, a good run.
And a good event. Met an old friend, made new friends...it's always good to be among friends, kan. Met some #krazirunners Mira, Ejah...but missed quite a few of them, including Lina (and her husband Zaini yang selalunya eveready dengan kamera & we would always have good running shots if he was around).
Would I be running MWM2015? Hmm. Maybe :)