Sunday, March 05, 2006

The Mind Was Willing But The Tummy Was Weak

What? Kuala Lumpur International Marathon

When? 5 March 2006; 5:00 am

Where? Kuala Lumpur (Where else, duh? Heheh!)

Clockwise from top left: The gloriously lit up Sultan Abdul Samad Building, The Start Point aka The Finish Point, The rebana ubi (Malay traditional drums)

My aim was to complete. After a couple of months of training and 3 circuit runs, I was confident that I could make it within the 6 hours KLIM qualifying time. However, my dream was shattered to pieces due to a tummy upset.

Meet Hajime Nishi

I was introduced to this hardcore marathoner at the pasta lunch yesterday afternoon. He is the founder of Ecomarathon International was born in Kyoto, an environmental capital of the world in 1949. In 1997, Hajime became the first person to run seven marathons on each of the seven continents in seven months, which earned him inclusion in the “Guinness Book of World Records.” His lifetime goal is to realize "One People, One Planet", a healthy peaceful planet for all species and their future generation by year 2101.

It is hard to believe that this man in 57 years old. He started running marathon when he was 41. And since then, he has completed 439 marathons and KLIM 2006 would be his no.440th. (Insert Wow here!)

He has a MUSEUM in Tokyo where he put all his marathon finisher medals on display. However it is not open to public. Heheh! He is a very friendly guy and loves to share his experience and tips for running marathon.

I asked him how he trains for marathon out of curiosity. My jaw dropped when he told me that he has ZERO mileage during weekdays.My jaw dropped further to my knee when he told me that he does 2 full marathons every weekend. You gotta salute this man or what? (Taking my hat off to Hajime). Marathon on Saturday is very common in America and Europe.

Hajime is no speed devil. According to him, slow and steady is the way to run a marathon. He said, “Slow is beautiful. Slow and steady reach the goal. Enjoy running slowly and keep yourself injury free.” Heheh! This fits perfectly into my running believes too. But, I am not that ambitious to do two marathons in a weekend. One every year is more than I can stomach.

I also found out that Hajime is also very fond of taking pictures DURING his run, just like me. Usually he carries TWO not one cameras. Sweet!

Wrong aim, Mayor of KL. Should aim it to the guy on your immediate right - to Mr. Balan. Heheh!

I started off with a confident stride while listening to two new CDs I bought before the marathon – Black Eye Peas: Monkey Business (Repackaged) and The Pussycat Dolls. Everything has gone well according to plan until my tummy started to act when I reached the Cheras area. My tummy was screaming and hurting for attention. (Insert growl here!). I had no idea what went wrong. Frantically, I searched for a toilet along the route. I made a stop at a Caltex Petrol Station. Unfortunately, the one and only toilet was the squatting type (not the sit-down one). Had no choice but to squat and do my business. After squatting for 10-20 minutes, I could hardly feel my legs. They felt like they do not belong to me anymore. I broke into cold sweat. Yikes!

Anyway, I dragged myself back to the tarmac and started to slowly run again. I had lost precious time but I continued on. I MUST complete this marathon regardless of the finishing time.

My tummy did not bother me anymore until later. However, the heat and the exhaust fume were driving me crazy.

Traffic Police At Work and the beautiful KL skyline.

Uma-licious @ StarHill (LV Store Opening Soon)

SprinklerWitMe - A burst of cool shower courtesy of Nike at Jalan Sultan Ismail.

PaceWitMe - One of two pacers that i saw in the run. I saw a Malay dude as a 5:00 hr pacer earlier but it was too dark to have a good photo of him.

Chocolate? My least favourite flavour of Power Gel. It kinda looks and tastes like Shiet! Heheh!

I alternated running and walking after the 30km points. I completely reduced to “Big Walk” when I reach the Jalan Duta at 35km. I was drained and feeling queasy at the same time. My calves felt like they were made of stone. My head felt like it was burning due to the intense sun. I plodded on.

Here's a pink ribbon for you...

4 more to go. Die! Die!

I finished my 42km even though I arrived a few minutes too late. Could have been better if not for the tummy upset.

I got really sick after went back to the hotel after the marathon. Purged and vomited a few times. All the 100plus that I consumed during the marathon went out with yesterday’s undigested vegetable. (Insert Eugh! Here) Anyway, it was not as bad as it sounds, the puke didn’t really smell nasty. I guess there was too much water in the tummy.

After checking out from Swiss Inn, we went to lunch. I ordered some food from the Petaling Street food court but I was not able to eat it. My face turned really pale and I had to rest my head on the dining table while my friends were chomping on their lunch. Sorry guys, I was really not feeling well. And I still do not know what went wrong. I took a cab home (Cost me RM12). I was praying hard along the way that I didn’t vomit in the taxi. I hit my bed without eating anything, just some isotonic drink to replace my body fluid. I felt too nauseous to eat anything. I felt better after resting a few hours. The queasy feeling was gone and became hungry again. Wolfed down a bowl of laksa from the hawker center for dinner. Now I am relaxing at home, typing this blog. I have taken a day leave tomorrow to rest. Coincidently, Academy Awards would be televised “live” on NTV7. So, I will be glued to the TV the whole morning watching “The Oscar goes to…..”

What is next? Thailand ING Marathon in 2 weeks time. I will be doing 21km only – need to reserve some leg strength for shopping and sightseeing. Looking forward to meeting Narumol and hopefully, Hajime in Bangkok again.

Tan, look behind you! What a hump!

Goodie? Hardly. What were in The Goodie Bag? 2 bars of Nesvita Cereal bars (expiring in April 06. Better eat it soon!!) 1 Celcom Xpax prepaid phone card worth RM10 1 Snack pack – an apple, a Sardine bun, a piece of fruitcake and an Indian lentil cake. 1 KLIM handkerchief (The quality of the printing could be better)

My Shining Medal

My prayer had been answered. It is not a plastic medal but a gorgeous star-shaped medal. The generous people at KLIM gave me a medal even though I was a few minutes over the official cut-off time of 6 hours. (Insert Hip Hip Hooray here!)

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