Tuesday, September 04, 2012

2012 Perth City to Surf 42km report

 My first 42km was in SCMKL 2010 which I really suffered after the race because of the lack of preparation. I decided to go ahead 2 days before the race because I've registered and I should just go and finish it. Last year i registered for it again however due to my deteriorating health then, i withdrawed ; in fact i could not join few races which i have registered online because I was sick.
I never thought I'd be running 42km again soon; as initially my niat was to run the 21K in the famous Perth City to Surf run. It is the biggest running event in WA and as my time is limited here, i decided to click on the 42km! I knew however with my combined cross weekly mileage, i could run the 21K comfortably but since I'm going back early next year, i should have a crack at the 42K. Its not about how fast i can finish it as I thought that i just want to finish the race.. honestly, just finish the course which is said to be one of the most beautiful course in the world.
 I collected my bib ( well, the only thing in their so called race pack!) the day before the race. It was in the Perth Convention Centre and and expo is held in conjunction with it.There was nothing really for me to buy as i have equipped myself well; bought the Saucony shoes, appropriate breathable socks, 2XU tights, my compression top and of course, the cool ear phones for my iphone playlist.
There were however few discoveries i made in the expo, one was the body glide lotion. It was a must to prevent blisters for the toes. I did not hesitate to get one of those because of my bitter experience! The other was the compression strap. I am sceptical about these things but i had a go for it. I know that my calves always gives me problems in distance running with its excruciating cramps, so as it was free.. strap it on mate! Lets see how effective it is :)
The official start for the 42.125km was at 6am. I woke up eary and i guess the advantage of staying in the city is I dont really need any transportation to the starting line as it was in the city! I went to the assembly area at about 530am and there wer thousands of enthusiastic marathoners already there. The participation is worldwide therefore you do see multi national flags being waved around! It was cold maybe about 9oC but the atmosphere was electrifying. THe warm up session was done via the big screen so everybody was really geared up for it. 
All the 42km runners were ushered to the starting line and my heart was pounding.Tawakkal je la kan.. haha i just wanna finish the race and that was my only aim! Take it easy yeah! Everybody was geared up and you can smell the salicylate cream as runners past each other. It was fun all over as everybody greeted each other and wishing everybody good luck!At 6 am we were flagged off! It was still cold and luckily i brought my apartment key with meas it helped to warm my freezing fingers!
The first 10km was on a flat course from the city, Langley Park to UWA-Matilda bay area. It was a nice route where we were running by the Swan River. The weather was predicted to be excellent that day and even that morning, there were no clouds to be seen. I was running at my own pace and i guess the music playlist played a big role for me not to be influenced by other runner's pace.I was surprised with my stride and was really comfortable. 
I continued the pace and it was a return route back to the city for half way; 21K. I was really surprised to see my split time to be 2 hours and 2 minutes. I panicked a bit because I've never recorded such time for my 21K run. I must have somehow ran faster than i should! 
The marathon showed itself after the 21K mark as we were to run up Kings Park.The elevation was the killer for this course but i sort of expected it! The course was familiar to me because its my bike route; there are in fact 3 uphill routes with different grading to it. However i've never really been on my feet for the course so it was a really strainous climb! Haha tu yang buat best tu!!
At 30k, yes my legs started to show how it really lacked the mileage for me to go the distance. At this point i did not know whether i was running too fast for my own good! Start daahh.. haha and i was cramping all over and i guess this was my wall! Had to slow down and walk it off as I aim to finish this course whatever it takes.The option of giving up is NOT AN OPTION! haha And of course, only now i realized that i did not snap a pic during the run! I should have snapped more as the atmosphere was electrifying and all sorts of personalities can be seen! I guess i was concentrating too much on my run. I cannot remember how much power gel i consumed (its called GU here) as belasah je everytime they hand it to me. (Yes.. it was free all the way along the course!)
"Kesakitan hanya sementara, kejayaan buat selama-lamanya.." the phrase which i uttered again and again during my physically enduring SCMKL 2010.. haha this time around it was not too bad but i did not overdo myself. MY 30K split in fact showed that it was possible for me to achieve an under 4 hours run!! hahaha biar betul kan.. but i came to my senses, what is the point for me to push myself and collapse at 40K and not finishing the race? I took it really easy after the 30k mark and i was absorbing the atmosphere. I am glad i made the decision to the the full monty and of course, my aim was just to finish the race!
Of course, at 40km they had to give us the ultimate killer; the climb to Reabold hill, Bold Park! Maakk aii.. time ni memang gua menyumpah beb.. hahaha memang baik punya as i literally felt like crawling and my legs were twitching all over.. It was one's determination to last which will bring me to the end point!
Reaching the 41K mark really made the adrenaline to go overdrive. It was really near to the finishing line and you can see your target from afar as we descend Bold Park. Alhamdulillah, I;ve reached this stage and looking back at my watch..wow.. I'm doing an under 5 hour run! Apa lagi.. now i really have to make my last 1 km memorable!
Crossing the finishing line was euphoric! Alhamdulillah i made it and my best time ever by far! Wow.. memang tak sangka! I wish i had people waiting for me near the finishing area so that i can run with the Malaysia flag! tak kesampaian bah.. hahaha Nevertheless, immediately my finisher's medal was given to me and i felt such satisfaction.. really really happy!
Eventhough i did not train specifically for this run, the fitness training I did for the last one year had really paid off. I managed to do an impossible time for my 42km which i don't know whether I'll be able to match it again in the future! It was a memorable run and i guess the combination of preparation; gear, precaution and training ; somehow i got it right.Insya-Allah, to more runs in the future!

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