Monday, January 2, 2012

Newton 25km New Year Challenge 2012 Race Report

This is one of the few races where I race humbly. Recalling last year's painful memory and last week's injury has seriously thumbed down my confidence. I doubted myself even when I was standing at the starting line. The intention to pull out from this race was lingering in my mind, because I'm not sure if my ankle will give me problem running long distance. Furthermore, I'm super low in mileage. In a month, I hit only less than 50km.

Gun goes off and so many runners sprinted to position themselves at the front pack including Aiman. I will have to settle for stable pace, no sprinting because my ankle just recovered, that also i wasn't sure if I've fully recovered. As I passed by runners one by one, I was looking for Kevin. He is the fastest Malaysian Ironman for this year=) when u scored such great achievement, u gotta expect people to challenge u=p Then I saw a runner with a white visor, his running gait and arm swing similar to Andreas Raelert, must be Kevin. True enough, it was him. He told me to go with my pace, so I left him. 

After some time, here comes Lionel Lee, another superb runner. He was the 3.30 pace setter for SCKLM, so I know I can pace him. I recognise him by his running gait too. How I wish I could run at stable pace like him, he ran the same speed despite uphill, downhill or flat! consistency is the key to success for long distance running. He did increase his pace a little when come the hill section, probably trying to drop me=p I was panting like hell when he ran faster at the hilly section, felt like giving up already. Then I looked back hoping to get another slower runner to pace, but the whole stretch of road was empty! 
Next I was self scolding "F*ck u Chan Jun Shen! how can u let Lionel go away! U are the University Duathlete of The Year, this isn't that hard!"
 I kept reminding myself that I can do this! 

I dug myself so deep that I had to use all techniques that I've learned to match with Lionel's pace. The "uppercut" technique by Chi Running was my only effective method to match Lionel's cadence at the hilly section. Nutrition-wise, I calculated my calorie burn and I took a performance bar and a triple threat 2 hours before race hoping that I can digest both bars to avoid throwing up. I constantly refuelled myself with electrolytes every 20 minutes, don't wait until I cramp then only pump in electrolytes. 

I ran passed the Power Bar water station and shouted at Abang Jasrul to ask him which one is plain water. He told me the last table is plain water. I grabbed 4 cups and poured on my forehead to cool down my overheating engine.
"Eh, how come the plain water tasted sweet and stciky?"
Then I heard evil laughter of volunteers including Abang Jasrul. Probably he gave me the wrong info. So I ran with sticky body. It didn't give me serious problem though, I was fine. 

Looked at my watch and saw 1 hour 30 minutes has passed, my chances to be in top 10 was there! I ran passed the same route where I had to walked in pain due to ankle injury. It was like running down the bitter memory lane. This year I'm not gonna lose my chance again, I'm gonna give my all since my ankle is still okay. Lionel starts increasing his pace, that was the time when both of my calves seized up! Then I saw my mum at the very last water station cheering for me, I was too weak to respond though.
Another Chinese runner overtook me and Lionel, we were so close to finishing line that I could hear Razlan's voice. Final 500m, I couldn't do anything but to finish the race with my current pace. 
Crossed the line 1 hour 45 mins 55 seconds =) Forgot to stop my watch. =p
Pace 4.14mins per kilometre. 

Karen, Kevin and Dad. Athletic family, how nice is that =)

 will be his last day in Malaysia.
Normally after race I don't stretch, but this time I stretch because I saw him stretching=p good influence. 

Yim is an ultra runner, he was wearing a pair of Vibram 5 Fingers. 
His opinion of running barefoot gave me a better understanding of why many long distance runners run barefooted including Mohan Marathon but finished without injuries unlike those with supported shoes=)
really nice talking to him =)

Uncle Oliver Ker.
He walks every time he races, the recent 12 hours run in Melaka, he covered 78km !
I wish I can still be as strong as him when I'm his age=) he could recognize me and he knows my mum! =) He told me that he couldn't run due to knee pain, so he walks. 
he said "I don't join short course races like 10kms, because by the time i finished walking everyone will be going home already"

Mr Tey has been very supportive, he takes pictures for free and everyone can download from his Facebook.
After race, I had a short chat with my uncle Vincent Khor, and a few of my friends including Kelvin Yew=)
I love this endurance racing community. Catching up with them is something that I always look forward to after racing=) 

 Here comes the winners=)
Thank god my ankle didn't give me problem. I rewarded myself with this rock tape, hoping that it will improve my performance. Surprisingly, no ankle pain, very very minor body ache despite finishing the race at relatively high pace. I slept for hours after washing all my race gears, woke up and realized that I have final exams in 2 more days. I did foam roller exercises every time when I get bored studying. Final exams starts tomorrow, time to study=) what a tough and tiring life! I chose to live like this, I will never feel tired of doing endurance racing. It makes me feel alive.

New PB =)

During Recovery Period, I listen to soft love songs... and this one is feeding my ears right now.
Thousand Years by Christina Perri =)


K3vski said...

Andreas Raelert? Fastest Malaysian Ironman this year? Hehe... gee, I'm blushing now. I have to clarify that because there's no more Ironman Langkawi, so there are less Malaysians competing in Ironmans :)

You did very well! That's an amazingly fast pace on a tough course. Congrats and I'm sure you'll keep on improving!

Chan Jun Shen said...

Yea u do run like Andreas Raelert. =) u can watch the Kona Ironman 2011 in the DVD and see for yourself. haha. If u keep progressing, soon u will be fastest malaysian. We can see malaysian Ironman's performance already plateau, not even one can clock below 10 hours. It's a sad thing.

Thanks for the compliment=) I'll focus on my final exams for now, then only decide when will be my next race. =)