Sunday, February 27, 2011

Now I'm worried......


Prior to this afternoon....I wasn't worried about the Sundown Ultramarathon end of June 2011.

I mean, yes I understand and acknowledge that it is a daunting distance.
84km last year was excruciating enough....let alone increase it to 100km this year.

But the optimistic part of me is looking forward to this race.
Perhaps it is time to see how tough I can be.....or how stiffed-neck I can get.....
Perhaps even to discover how vulnerable my human existence is.

But whatever it is, I wasn't too worried.

Well....I have already signed up. There's literally no turning back...(besides, I've already bought my air tickets to Singapore for race day)

Most probably my ability to complete last year's 84km with only 4 full marathons under the belt and practically NO long runs done in between made me stupidly too optimistic for the upcoming race.

(And yes...I do agree that 100km is a whole different ball game)

During this morning's long run, Winnie was sharing her fears and doubts about completing the 100km race.
I tried to shrug it off. We still have time to train, I kept telling her.

That unsettling feeling inside of me was, I figured, due to indigestion or something.
Ignore it and hopefully it'll go away...that sorta thing.

Post-run, I took my nap (coz besides eating....the bestest thing in life is to be able to nap!!!!) and had the weirdest dream ever......about running the ultra.

I dreamt that I had just 5 hours still to cover the last 50km.

I was tired.
I was confused.
I was sleepy.
I was also extremely irritable.

I kept yelling at someone at the back to hurry up or we'll never make the cut off time.

I also remembered downing many slices (or was it many whole pizzas?) of extra cheese on top of the 4 cheese pizza along the way.....kinda like Dean Karnazes on his very-long runs.

And for some unexplainable reason (that is why it's called DREAMS!), I had the urge to take a shower every few kilometers...(at least I felt fresh even in my dreams)
Post-shower, I had difficulty locating my shoes. I ended up putting on a different pair of shoe each time.

I was still trudging towards the finish line and I glanced down at my Garmin and was horrified that no matter how much and how fast I attempted to run, the distance stayed the same but the clock was ticking away frantically.
I seemed to be the only one who was nervous. Everyone else seemed to be maintaining their cool.
I was literally going psychotic on the other runners.

And I woke up right before I DNF!

Yea...some dream.

I'm rationalizing it as my inner conscious telling me that I REALLY AM worried!!!!

Thankfully....I still have (more or less) 4 months more to train.
And I seriously have to up the ante.



OMG.....what on earth did I get myself into AGAIN!?


Later!!!!



Thursday, February 24, 2011

TGIT!!!!!!


For finally achieving a sub-5 marathon (you fast runners out there, stop rolling your eyes!!!), I am treating myself to another marathon.
*happy happy, joy joy*

Yup......I just signed up for the Laguna Phuket International Marathon, scheduled on the 12th June 2011.
It's 2 weeks after Sundown 42k and 2 weeks before Sundown 100k.

Some of my friends think I've gone off the edge at the loony bin.
(I'm not condemning them to be 100% off the mark....)

But frankly, it would be nice to have a 42km as my last long run before the ultra.

And c'mon......it's gonna be held at an exotic place....like PHUKET!!!!!
(and I've NEVER been to Phuket before)
I know a lot of people heading for this race so it would eventually turn out to be a huge running party!!!!

And I LOVE running-parties!

I'm flying in via Air Asia on early Saturday morning, run the race on Sunday morning and head back home Sunday night.
A little tight in schedule but it's the only way to fit it into my busy week.

Hopefully within those packed hours, I'd time to lounge around on a beach.
Kinda like this:


Yea yea...so that isn't exactly me.....although in my delusional world, it could be!!!

And for a fact, I really need to make use of those bikinis I bought online (the downside of online shopping) to justify my spending.

Also...someone better make it his/her job to remind me several weeks in advance to get my Marathon Maniac vest ready for Phuket.
I don't want another last minute frantic search for it anymore!!!!
(it must be somewhere. It's either in my Ipoh closet...or the KL closet......somewhere)


* My yellow MM vest....

* Or my red/white MM vest that Mo-maniac gave to me back at Borneo International Marathon 2010 just when I pledged to become a maniac myself.

Alright.
I can't wait for the sun, the sea, the beach, the half naked men...I mean, the running.....in Phuket!!!!!

Who's with me?


Later!!!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Standard Chartered Hong Kong Marathon - 20th February 2011







Where do I even begin?!

Let's do it 'pre-', 'intra-' and 'post-' sorta style, shall we? (kinda like in a surgical procedure...)

1. PRE-RACE

Got into Hong Kong on Friday evening with Terence, Maybel and Trixie.
I know that they have been saying that the weather this time around is gonna be cold.
But I'm a little on the optimistic side and I decided I wasn't going to pack too many pieces of insulating clothing but instead had decided I was going to brave the weather.
On the up side, I must have burn off quite a bit of calories by all the involuntary shivering due to my inability to tolerate the cold.


Collected the race kit on Saturday and proceeded to get assimilated into HK lifestyle....which I've decided would be town-crawling amongst the throngs of people.
(if I thought Singapore was bad enough....)


The Malaysian contingent had a pre-race dinner meet up at The Spaghetti House somewhere in Mongkok.
For a food-chain sorta restaurant, they serve pretty decent pasta.
My Linguine with Smoked Salmon was the BOMB!!!!
Absolutely uber-delicious!!!!!


The conversation that night amongst us were about running in cold weather....and the dreaded hills that we'd be facing tomorrow.

The crowd dispersed early. Everyone was keen to an early night. The battle awaits us.

Packed my race bag....and stuffed the Malaysian flag into my SPIbelt....and a tiny bottle of NaughtyG for a 30km caffeine boost!
Ok...now I'm ready.

2. INTRA-RACE

The race morning.

OMG!!!!
Finally it has arrived!!!!!
After weeks of anticipation........it is NOW or NEVER....(but of course, there's always next year if never!)

It was really difficult to get up that morning. The bed was so warm and the outside was SO cold.
Got dressed and ready to rumble.
(despite forgetting where I'd last left my Marathon Maniac vest thus not having it for HK, and causing a little last minute panic-episode of 'what-to-wear', I am thankful that I got myself a free T-shirt from Nike, courtesy of PolyU Hong Kong, which I wore on race day along with my leopard print running skirt. And yes....I almost ALWAYS race in a running skirt)



It was cold (understatement of the year).

I was trembling in my knee-high compression socks.
But the atmosphere was FANTASTIC!!!!!!
Best of all...I didn't break a sweat until I actually started running....(much contrast to most races held within our same-climate region where I'd be drenched in sweat while waiting to start)




Met up with a lot of other Malaysian runners. Was hoping to bump into the Marathon Maniacs (the international contingent. They were mass emailing each other for HK pre- and post-race meet up....which I ended up not making it to either) as it would be hopeless for them to spot me. Coz y'know....I didn't miraculously find my MM yellow vest in the last minute.

Terence (being a veteran of running HK Marathon) cautioned not to hope and aim for PB as the route was hilly and not exactly ideal to push but instead, to run at leisure pace (as long as you qualify within the 6 hours cut off time) and enjoy the view!


As the run started, so did the drizzle.
But thankfully the drizzle subdued after about 4-5km into the race.


I tagged along with Terence. He said he'd pace me and get me back by 5:30.
Decent timing. Besides, I didn't have to think about my pace, therefore following someone else's pace sounds great.

I saw Wendy and her bright pink cap ran off and disappear into the crowd in front.
Part of me wanted to run faster and keep up....but burning out too quickly into the race, not a good idea. So stuck with Terence and his 'finish-in-5:30' pace.


There were porta-potties situated at every few water stations.
I wanted to go and take a leak.
But the queues were horrendous.
So I waited and kept on running until the next potty-stop.
Still long queue.
Kept on running.......then I really needed to go and do a no. 2, but the queue were still so long and I didn't wanna waste time waiting in line.

Kept on running. Terence said the potty queue would eventually be nil as I go further.
I took his word and kept on running.


After coming out from the first tunnel at around 12km.....the potty stop, despite the queue was very tempting.
Terence says to hang in there until 22km!
He said that from past experience (I did mention he was a veteran of running this race), the 22km potty stop is usually void of queuing runners.

Fine...kept on running.

More or less around that moment, I realized that my SPIbelt was bouncing about.
I tried readjusting it but it kept on jiggling.
Frustrated, I took out the NaughtyG bottle to stop the bounce and ran with it held in my hand.
Terence said it was a nuisance carrying it and that I might as well just down it right now.
Oh well.....why not.


Within 5 minutes of downing that bottle of concentrated caffeine drink.....I literally sped off from Terence!
It was as if my legs were on turbo-mode!
I felt like I could run faster and faster and faster!!!!
I don't know if I could keep up this pace but at that moment it felt easy and it felt BRILLIANT!!!
In fact, I made up for so much distance that I caught up with Wendy and her bright pink cap.
And once I caught up, I felt that my legs could still run faster and off I went!


Passed the 22km mark and the potty stop. Hell with it....at this pace, I could perhaps make it back to the starting line to answer nature's call. My legs felt they could run at that pace forever!!

Probably in hindsight not such a brilliant idea as when I reach 30km, I was ready to break down. As fast as the caffeine kicked in....with same speed and gusto if left me deflated.
I was limping slightly due to calve muscle cramp.


But I continued trudging along. I mean, I already made it this far.

At 32-33km, the bright pink cap caught up.
Wendy is brilliant is running and sticking to one pace from start till end of race.


Continued running and following the bright pink cap.

More up and down hills....not that I ever complain about the downhills.
Was trying to run through the inclination but after a while I decided to just walk the uphills.

Henry and Bernard ran past us. Henry says to follow him to finish in 4:50.
Omigosh....did he just mention sub-5?!
Yes YES!!!! So we tried following Henry and Bernard.




In the end they were SO ahead and I was left following the bright pink cap.
(but not that far ahead that they couldn't hear me cursing when we ran up the last uphill!)

The last 3km were excruciating.
I knew sub-5 was possible.
Wendy, the bright pink cap seemed to be trotting along happily while my legs were screaming for me to stop and walk. She kept telling me to continue running.
I had to shut that annoying voice in my head that is begging for me to stop.


3 more km.
3 more km.
Why is this kilometer taking forever?!
3 more km.
Ok.....bright pink cap still within visual field.
Woohoo....40km mark.


2 more km.
2 more km.
2 more freakin km.
Yay...water station!!!!
2 more km....and where the hell are all the good looking male runners?
2 more....oh wait....there's the 41km marker!!!!

1 more km.
1 more km.
Thank goodness for another water station.
1 more km.
Yes we are now running through the actual city!!!
Omigosh.....the crowd is deafening!!!
I'm almost there....!!!!


When I saw the finish line, I took out my flag....held it above my head....and gave it all I've got, sprinted to the finish line!!
And I'm DONE!!!! YAY!!


3. POST-RACE

Lots of picture taking. Lots of congratulatory words.
Lots of PBs despite the tough route.
I wasn't too sure of my exact timing...but I was sure it was less than 5 hours.....I hope.
We packed our stuff and got ready to leave for lunch.

And then I realized that I still have yet to go for my potty-stop!!!!!!



Anyway...I'm hoping to return next year coz this race was FUN!!!!


Later!!!!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

I'm back!!!!!

Yes, good folks of the cyberworld....I am back on home ground!

Just a short update.

Hong Kong Marathon was BRILLIANT!!!!
The weather was too cold for liking (perhaps I should have packed a little more clothing of thicker material) and I'm sweating like a pig (although that is a misnomer coz pigs don't sweat...which is why they roll around in mud to stay cool), now that I'm within the scorch of the equator.

And the race?

I PB'ed!!!!

Yes, folks....I finally SUB-5!!!
(for you fast runners....stop rolling your eyes....it's a HUGE deal for me to sub-5!)

I know....for a moment there, the ground underneath my feet kinda rumbled at this profound revelation as I let that fact set in.

Anyway...I'm happy happy happy.....
And achy achy achy lower limbs.....but still extremely happy!!!!

Will be posting up the race report.....as soon as I get reacquainted with the warm, humid weather of this country.

Later!!!!

p/s: happy happy happy happy......

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Again....the Fresh Air Fund!


It sucks to be working when the rest of the country is on a holiday.

But lets perk my day up by doing my small bit to promote charity.

Sara from the Fresh Air Fund contacted me again regarding their fund raising via running NYC Half Marathon on 20th March 2011!!!!
(please, not to be mistaken with NYC Marathon in November)

Again I know most Malaysians reading this blog is unable to fly to NY to run....(but let's be honest, it's one of those MUST-DO in running marathons if budget permits), but if one or two of you loaded and loony runners reading this.....please click HERE for more information.



You'll be guaranteed a slot to run as long as you pledge to raise funds for this organization, that gives NYC lower-income communities kids a chance to experience a proper summer vacation!

That's burning calories, run New York AND helping children......I mean, how much more cooler can that be?!
Definitely entitles you to Santa's GOOD list this year!!!

So do check out the link above.....and if you're feeling too bothersome to scroll up....click HERE!


Do your good bit for the day...click on on Fresh Air Fund....run NYC Half Marathon!!!!


Later!!!!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

My new crush!!!! *gasp*


Yes I do remember that I swore (a while back but felt like a lifetime) that I would not talk about crush-boy anymore.
But I'd like to continue that "saga" and let y'all know at least how it went down in the end.

So after where I last left off, I guess I was still harboring some teenage-infatuation towards him.
Yea....despite tipping over to the big 3-0 in 11 months, I can be such a love-sick teenager at times...(but at least that goes to prove that I'm still young at heart!)

Anyway, for me....we were becoming much more better acquainted than before.
I can officially say that we're FRIENDS.
But that sorta annoying "hopeful" feelings lingered a bit too long for comfort.

Then, I found out from another friend, whom shall remain anonymous, as I just found out that contrary to popular belief, she DOES read my blog (shit!), that crush-boy confessed he would never date someone larger in body size dimension than him.
And for a fact, he ain't large in size......and unfortunately yours truly is slightly (ok a lot!) more horizontally challenged compared to him.

And I thought...sheesh!
Since when did the Y-chromosome evolved in such a way that it made some of their genetic carriers become so superficial?
Is how one looks the only thing that is important?!
What the hell happened to "personality" trumping "appearance"?
Was it just some lie conjured up by some feminist of the yester-years to make the general female population (y'know...those who don't look like Victoria's Secret Models?!) feel better about themselves?!

After the initial "what the f**k" moment subsided.....I regained composure and figured it was his loss anyway.

And thus....this crush is officially sliding! Yes....OFFICIAL!!!
(I give full rights to YOU to whack me on the head if it still hasn't slide)

But luckily for me...I've already got a new crush waiting in the wings.... *glee*

Meet.....The Vibram FiveFingers Komodosport!!!!

Ain't he dashing?!
My heart skipped a beat the moment my eyes met his.
Totally had me at 'hello'.
Infatuated doesn't even start to describe my feelings for him.
Try "absolutely-nuts-about-him-bordering-on-psychotic-needing-instant-psychiatric-help"!

(ok ok.....you can stop rolling your eyes now. Don't blame me for extra-occular muscle spasm!!)





Anyway...I blame this new crush on DOdo....(click HERE for his blog)
I mean, he did do the initial introductions.

It's not available in Malaysia yet. I mean c'mon...it's not even available in Singapore yet!!!
(for VFF Bikila within Malaysia...please contact Frank @ Runnerz Circle)

DOdo posted on FB last week that he's ordering the Komodosport from the States via CitySports website.
With the current state of the US Dollar strength, DOdo reckons it would be a brilliant idea to get it straight from the States....(earning Singaporean currency does have its perks)

I'm extremely tempted to purchase it myself.
(you know me and internet shopping, rite?!)



I'd probably click BUY THIS NOW after returning from Hong Kong next Tuesday.

Then I can continue romanticizing with my new crush on a beach.....hopefully next to some hot hunk like the above picture...(preferably hot hunk would have his hair cut and washed!)

On a more serious note (yes...I can do serious as well), ran 17km this morning in my Brooks Ghost 3.
A much better feeling compared to my run in Launch yesterday.
Still having those annoying feet discomfort during and post-run.
(I do agree that Plantar Fasciitis could possibly be interfering with my love affair with running)
But most likely I'd do HK Marathon in the Ghost 3.
Picked up pace today as Alexis ran off ahead and I was left without anyone to run at 'gossip-pace' with.

So HAPPY VALENTINE'S DAY TO ALL!!!


Later!!!

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Tapering season is more fun than Christmas!!!



I'm flying off to Hong Kong for the Standard Chartered Hong Kong Marathon next Friday for the race on Sunday...

I'm filled to the brim with jitters and excitement!!!!

Therefore...it's TAPERING TIME!!!!
I get to be lazy and run as minimally as I want to run leading up to the time I leave for Hong Kong. I LOVE being lazy!!! (goes to prove that my Homo Sapien conservation genes still functioning)

And I get to carbo-load all I want.....(so yes, I do realize that it's a hoax with the 'carbo-load-til-you-drop' scheme.....and even if I do, I'm just stuffing my gastric cavity with simple, easily digested sugars which would eventually, and very quickly, become a curse to my hips!)
Oh just think of all the pasta with alfredo sauce and all the Domino's pizza I could eat this week!!!!

I swear....ain't that better than Christmas?! (don't reply even if you disagree)

And I get to go Hong Kong with all my running friends.....oh and the shopping!!!!
Did I mention the shopping just yet?!
Oh...and the pork?! (excuse me if my Muslim friends find this offensive.....but I LOVE pork!)

Anyway.....today was the first run of the week.
I was pretty much burnt out after 4-day straight of running last week and almost keeled over on Monday and Tuesday.
Wednesday was first day at work and the insomnia on Tuesday night meant that I was a walking zombie of the undead clan the whole of Wednesday.
Thursday was recuperation for Wednesday's lack of sleep.
Friday....well, traveling-back-home time should not be interfered by the fact I've not run for 5 days already.

So today's 16km was the first of the week...and in (gasp!) shoes.
It's been a while since I ran in shoes ...(technically for me, anytime over 2 weeks is 'a-while')
Perhaps it was the Putrajaya Twilight Challenge that I changed into shoes after slightly over a half marathon distance....
Since I realized I wasn't ready yet with the Vibram Five Fingers to do a full marathon distance, I needed to get back to SHOES pronto as I've not done any LSD in running shoes for.....quite a while!

Well...my feet still hurt despite reverting back to something with cushioning and I miss feeling the ground while running, like in the VFF......
(can you tell that I'm still pining to run HK Marathon in my KSOs?!)

AP says to just go with the VFF at Hong Kong as I could run in them until 31km and I'll just somehow fudge the additional 11km until the finish line. Her reasoning was that the competitive aura on race day and the adrenaline will block my pain sensors and get me back in one piece. Don't you just love her kinda positivity?

Terence says to chuck out my VFF altogether.....I felt that is a little drastic, honestly. But keep in mind that he is anti-VFF since running in them had caused him much pain in the heels. I personally thinks he was heel-striking. Thankfully he doesn't read this blog thus there would be no shooting down of my opinion of him heel-striking anytime soon.....(beside, I still need a lift from him to get to the airport this Friday!)

Yimmy says not to push it if I'm not ready.
Always on the cautionary side, this VFF wearing friend of mine.

I'm not gonna bother asking Mo-maniac on his opinion. I already know what his answer would be.

Oh well....we'll see how it goes. Until I get on the plane, I am still able to decide against all sane reasoning and go with my heart, which is screaming for me to run in VFF!!! (stupid, insensitive and ignorant heart!)

Random photo-log:


* We were over at Winnie's place last Monday for a little CNY get together.
And since I'm dog-ownership-deprived, I'm hugging little Cooper here and pretending he's mine!!!

* Winnie with her latest edition to her family....Mini.
He was having fever, apparently. We did warn Vincent not to feed him his leftover beer.

* Mini-Cooper were the main attraction of the gathering. So don't mind the additional photos of the extras.


* They were ADORABLE!!!!
I am so dog-gone jealous!!!!

* On my first day back at the nut house, bumped into Dr. Julin the Dentist coming over for a visit to our hospital. Don't ask me, but it's a rather common practice within government institutions for its staff to visit other hospitals and stuff.

* My housemates and I @ Brewster Restaurant on our inaugural monthly 'Wear-something-I've-not-worn-before-dinner' date. As you can witness, I am starting carbo-loading slightly ahead of schedule.


Hoping for 20km tomorrow.

Later!!!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Insomnia sucks....

I'm back in Ipoh....

After a week of hibernating at home being an absolute sloth, it is time to head back to work.
I figured starting work on a Wednesday will do away with the Monday-blues.
However, much to my disappointment, I'm currently also facing a potential Wednesday-blues!

After my 4-day run which ended with an unfortunate Sunday's 22.88km....meaning that both my feet hurt, my soles hurt, my ankles hurt, my arches hurt, my shins hurt, my calve muscles hurt...
In other words, it was VERY unfortunate a 22.88km (despite the lucky connotations attached to that numerical) which forced me to take Monday and Tuesday off from running.
(Ok...so partly it was due to the pain....but mostly I really just needed to sleep in)

Anyway.....returning to topic.....I plan to wake up super early Wednesday morning to get my run-in before trudging off to work and face my impending Wednesday-blues.
A nice shot of endorphins does wonders!!!

Knowing my past records of waking up early on working days.....I have this time, prepared myself.
I laid all my running clothes on the car next to the alarm.
For safety measures, I set the alarm to go of at 5am....5.15am.....5.30am....and if I still don't tear myself sorry behind off the bed by then.....not even a lethal earthquake is going to do the trick.
KSO and toe stockings side by side and right at the door.

I even psych myself up to hitting the sack at 9.30pm.....just to get some extra zzzz for tomorrow's run.

Lights out.....and I wait to doze off into slumberland.
I waited......
Checked the phone......10pm.
I'm sure snoozeland will be calling anytime soon.
I waited......
Checked again.....10.30pm.
Perhaps I'd get up and meditate further on the wise wisdom of Terry Pratchett.
11.30pm and lights out again.
I waited.......
12.10am.

Sigh.
It seems that I'm not meant to be sleeping early tonight.
Perhaps I'm not meant to be waking up at 5am for my morning run either.

I ponder how would taking MC the day I'd supposedly start work after a long break seems....
Probably won't go down too well with the Red Turban.....

Oh c'mon, sleep....stop evading me!!!!
Sigh....insomnia sucks.

Later!!!!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Of eating and NOT-eating.

Today is the day that I'm suppose to start my 'diet' of supposedly wanting to lose 7kg.

Usually....I'm not one to NOT take a challenge that is considered 'impossible'.
I'm not one to take this sorta things lying down, so to speak.

But something about wanting to lose weight scares the hell out of me.
I was contemplating about this and wondering what was it that bugged me so much thus letting fear surfaced.

Then I remembered something from my 'not-so-distant' past which I thought I should share with y'all.
Sharing is caring after all.

Before we start, let's get some facts straight.....
I've never been thin. Ever!!! Like seriously!!!!
Not even as a child!!!
I've been experiencing all the "why-are-you-not-thin" speech from all directions since young and I've learnt to ignore such incessant nonsensical opinions.

But of course they hurt.
They really hurt when you're growing up and still have not found your footing in life.
It hurts when you're not confident about who you are.
It hurts and etches very deeply into your memory that when you're an adult, part of it still stings.

Thankfully for me, I spent a good 5 years of highschool in an all-girl school.
I've learnt to be who I want to be and mostly being in that environment helped me mould most of who I am today.
(personality is formed at age 18 and subsequently becomes concrete and difficult to change....almost impossible, from what I see at work)

So I learnt to make do with how I am at best.

At the end of my highschool years, I started reading a lot on ethical eating and animal liberation (the internet can be such a menace to a gullible mind) and subsequently became vegan for 2 years and vegetarian for the next 8.
That helped keep my weight in check for quite a while.

I've never attempted any popular diets or much dieting of any sort. I do joke about it but never really bothered with it.

When I was in med school, the earlier years.....I gained 3 kilos after returning from a month long holiday of gorging on cheese, ice cream and the likes. One step on the weighing machine upon returning home, all the red-alert alarms went off in my head!
I had to do something about it.
I need to get back to my equilibrium....pronto!!!!

So I started....(yes I am rather ashamed to say it).....dieting.
Initially, nothing of gigantic scale.
It was cutting back on portion size here and there.
Making do without dessert (my absolute favourite) for a while.
It was suppose to be until I get back to my 'normal' weight.
...which I did after a week or two.
But something in my head clicked.
I ADORED seeing the number on the scale plummeting.
Instead of reverting back to normal eating habits, I stuck to my 'diet'.
I kept on reducing portion size.
I tolerated the feeling of hunger.
I kept losing weight.
I ADORED being told I was thinner.
The feeling is addictive.

I kept at reducing the amount of food I take.
I became friends with the feeling of hunger.
Hunger was now my refuge.
It was familiar....it was safe.....and somehow in my twisted mind, it was good.
Yes...the feeling was good.
And I was so damn sure that what I was doing to myself was the right thing.

I kept on losing weight.
People kept telling me how good I look.
But when I look in the mirror....I don't like what I see.
I thought I was HUGE!!!
I was not happy.

My thoughts were persistently about food...or rather the food that I cannot eat.
I lie in bed at night, hungry....thinking about food.
I go for my classes.....thinking about food.
I stopped going out with my friends because I cannot eat what they are eating.
I don't want them to know that I am not eating.
I started avoiding them for activities that may eventually involve food....(in the Malaysian context, ALL activities eventually involve food!)

But I was losing weight.
I was getting thinner.
My clothes were getting really lose.
But I wanna be thinner. I know I can be thinner.

It was never ending.
And although I hate to admit it then.....I was spiraling out of control.
Part of me knew I had to stop.
I knew I had to get out of this.
I knew I was on the verge of falling into the abyss.
But I didn't know how to escape.

My salvation came in the most unlikely form.
In a form of a most unlikely friend....(she doesn't read this blog so no point in mentioning her name)

But long story short......that was 8 years ago.
The whole ordeal lasted for just 6 months, thankfully.
It took another 6 months to correct my thinking and eating habits before considering myself back to 'normal'.
I lost 12kg in a space of 3 months of so...(which by the way, I stopped menstruating for a couple of months after the 3rd month)
It was on plateau for the next 3 months.
And I gained back 8kg over the space of my recovery 6 months.....which was pretty decent come to think of it.

And since I started running, I've never felt so comfortable in my own skin as I do now.
Yes I do joke about wanting to diet.
I mean, who doesn't want to be at their 'ideal' size and weight?!
But to lose myself (literally) in the process......I just don't think that's worth it.
(honestly, I'm terrified of going back to that dark abyss)

Besides, there's nothing more satisfying that letting the rich and delicious ice cream melt in your mouth, letting your tastebuds get excited over the artificial flavouring and extreme sweetness......yum!

So in conclusion.....NO, I'm NOT going to GO on DIET.
I am NOT going to lose 7kg.....(but thank you for asking)
I do not want to lose myself in the process.
And YES....I'm good with how I am right now.
I'm healthy....and I'm happy (more or less).
So if you think I'm fat or in dire need to lose a couple of kilos, then do me a favour and keep that opinion of yours to yourself because it isn't welcomed.
(because honestly, the only opinion that matters are the ones that comes from the people who care about you and love you...and those people would never say anything to hurt your well-being!)

Cool....I've said my peace.
So who's up for cakes?!


Later!!!!

Sunday, February 6, 2011

'Post-mortem' of the CNY hols

Just a quick update on whats-been-happening over the CNY hols..
(btw...HAPPY CNY y'all!)

Anyway...been running quite a bit this entire week.
I need the output for more input!!!

Tuesday: 15km with AP and KK....in KSO no less.
Wednesday: sleep in and becoming a total sloth!
Thursday: First day CNY and ran 10.88km for good luck with the usual group....in KSO as well.
Friday: 13.88km for more good luck with the usual suspects.
Saturday: 16.88km so that I could gorge on my festive cookies.
Sunday: Almost keeled over and died while running 22.88km. The past four days of running left me fatigued, tired and painful while running in KSO.

Am not extremely keen to start my "Lose-7kg" diet on Tuesday post-CNY hols but all good things do come to an end....eventually.....however depressing that thought is.

Sigh.

Anyway...after Sunday's 22.88km (am definitely needing the luck and prosperity for this new year), I'm a little concern about wanting to complete Hong Kong Marathon in the VFF.
Am definitely going to have a trial of LSD in shoes this coming weekend (it's been a while since I ran long in shoes!) before making the conclusion of which footwear to pack for Hong Kong.

Oh...and tapering starts SOON!!!!!!


Later!!!!


Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Twilight Putrajaya Challenge

My rather delayed 'race' report.

Actually we should just call it a run.

Twilight Putrajaya Challenge was the brainchild of Irwan. He wanted to organize a run for runners, by runners and all glorious things related to runners.
(of course I got a feeling he had some lightbulb moments for the conception for the run after Twilight Singapore Challenge was published on Facebook....yes, going for that as well)

So the run works like this.
All runners are signed up for a particular distance to run.
It ranges from 11km all the way up to oblivion.....(but I think there were a few screw-loosed out there who did manage 77km-88km)
Runners have 12 hours to complete whatever distance they are gunning for.
(of course the last of the volunteers packed up at around 5am when the last runner gave up and went home)

Runners pay a minimal amount (I think I paid RM53 for the ultra category.....bare in mind there are no sponsors) to run their participated distance and the money goes to drinks, ambulance services, medals (which I felt was unnecessary),perhaps volunteers and the rest goes to charity.....

So Terence, Maybel and Winnie picked me up to head to Putrajaya.
Race starts right in front of Palace of Justice (PoJ).
The weather was just right. Dark....cloudy....drizzly.....LOVELY!!!

For this race, I really wanted to run in VFF.
And I really wanted to try Bikilas. So I got Mo-maniac to get a pair for me from kiasu-land with whatever special 'mention-my-name-and-get-honorary-discount' he can obtain for those Bikilas.
And due to my Morton's toe dilemma....I told him to get them in a size bigger.
(if you're wondering, I wear size W39 for my KSO....and wanted W40 for the bikilas)

Mo-maniac got them for me in bright 'can-you-not-see-I-want-more-attention' PINK!

I wore the Injinjis toe socks (I need some sort of barrier for my VFF) that Dannie and Carrie got for my 'birth-month' with the Bikilas.
Unfortunately, despite the socks, the Bikilas were a tad too large for my feet. Still wearable....but....oh y'know.

* I wanted to be easy to spot.....just in case of rogue traffic.

* And for good luck...we rubbed the bald head.

So when we got to PoJ, a small gathering of runners have already formed in front of it.
We collected our makeshift bibs and spent the rest of the time, waiting for the arrival of 7pm flag off time, by camwhoring. Thankfully, I didn't need my camera. Mo-maniac and DOdo were there with theirs.
Great stuff. I could just focus on posing!

* Collecting our bibs.

* Karen and her charity......I later found out that the above signage was painted by the hubby.

Because this was a run for runners BY runners.....some runners (yes YOU, Karen and Azhar) baked delicious cupcakes and made strawberry flans for the race.
No...it ain't free.
The sales of those goodies goes towards Karen's charity for the Indigenous people of Malaysia.
(don't even get me started on the unfair treatment these people get from our government!!!)

* Pre race pictures of all those attempting ultra.

* Karen gave out fortune cookies to all runners.

* Mine says I need to give assistance when needed. In other words, I need to work!

* Elaine attempting her FIRST full marathon!!! (and succeeded, mind you!)
I'm SO proud of her. Her first official FULL will be in Borneo International Marathon!!!
Watch this face....so full of potential!!!


* Me and my ultra buddy AP!


At 6.30pm, Irwan gave his expressed appreciation for our participation and a mini briefing regarding the race.
At 7.10pm, the ultra category were let loose onto the empty roads of Putrajaya to make their way along the 11-ish km route on their misguided journey to complete...however much distance they wanna cover.
Everyone else starts at 7.30pm....(but I think that too was delayed slightly)

* Irwan doing the briefing.

I stuck with AP the entire way. Mostly she runs at a pace that I'm good with and she has a lot of stories to share. You just gotta love that about her!

The rest zoomed off rather quickly. I figured it was going to be a long night...so might as well take it easy. Perhaps a little bit too easy....

The roads were mostly empty....except for the occasional cars.
But it did give a false sense of security coz there were the occasional car that sped through the empty roads wanting to run down clueless runners, like it was some Nintendo game.

The Bikilas were....different from my KSOs. It muffled the feeling of stepping on ground and it felt a bit too much like wearing shoes.

Anyway....my feet (both!) started to hurt at 26km.....and I had to head back to Terence's car to change into my Brooks Launch.
The immediate feeling of slipping into shoes....were the awareness of the cushioning beneath my feet!!! (which I thought was really cool)
Of course after several kilometers on, the feeling became ambient.

And then at 30km, I developed blister of my right 5th toe.

* DOdo and his whistle. What's with Singaporeans and their whistles?!


I didn't know how I was going to pull a 77km at that moment.
I was tired....I was in pain.....and the worst bit....I was sleepy!!!!
I mean, here I was...someone to regularly dozes off at 10pm daily.....still up at 2am trying to stay awake while keeping myself moving forward, one foot at a time.
I could deal with the pain.
I could deal with the fatigue.
But I really wanted to sleep!!!!

Oh..don't even get me started about the hunger pangs!!!!


So the immediate aim between me and AP was to get to 42km....walk a little bit more and consider that an ultra....(yes, I know...pathetic....but we were sleepy and not thinking straight)

In the end.....I ended up doing 45km....(technically, it IS considered an ultra) and AP (post-nap in car) did 55km.
Bryan being the champion that he is did 77km plus some.
Jeff being the mileage masochist (or just plain crazy) started 3 hours earlier and ended up doing somewhere near 80km.

Oh well....I could always try harder (get more sleep!!!) for Twilight Singapore Challenge.
Now I just have to think of ways to get more people to go for that run...

And before I forget....thank you Mo-maniac for 'importing' my Bikilas.....and for the pics that I stole for this blog!


Later!!!!