Slave Route Challenge 2018 – Cape Town

Rizq is when the city you travel to has a race that co-indices with travel dates. The Slave Route Challenge was held on 13th May, Mother’s Day in Cape Town, and I thought it was a good way to check out the city and get to know the community, so I registered for the 21km run. Cape Town is the oldest town in South Africa, also known as the Mother City

Climbing the Pentz Road, Bo Kaap Area with the city center at the backdrop. Picture courtesy of ABPHOTOZA

The registration was done online and the experience was smooth. I collected the bib and race license at the Castle of Good Hope a day before the run. It was autumn coming to winter in Cape Town and the weather was lovely with blue skies throughout my trip.

The run started sharp at 7am in front of the City Hall with three thousand participants in the half marathon category, followed by 10km and 5km every 15 minutes after. The runners were diverse and many runners in hijab ran along with me. What I like about running in hijab is getting the salams and greetings from other fellow muslims along the way. I look like many of them – the Cape Malays.

The 21km route took me along the beautiful neighborhood in the city of Cape Town with the sunrise shining upon gorgeous Table Mountain on the backdrop, Company Garden with a bit of a incline the first 5km. It was followed by a steep climb on Pentz Road 8km onward up to the top of Bo Kaap neighborhood. The runners were cheered by the residents, volunteers and locals along the way, serving local delicacies till the top of the climb. The run continued on flat roads towards the Stadium, Green Point area along the waterfront and back to the City Hall.

  • Castle of Good Hope
    Castle of Good Hope
    Castle of Good Hope
  • Volunteers at Castle of Good Hope
    Volunteers at Castle of Good Hope
  • Race Kit Collection at Castle of Good Hope
    Race Kit Collection at Castle of Good Hope
  • The start and finish point - The City Hall
    The start and finish point - The City Hall
  • The first mosque I spotted. First 2 km of the run
    The first mosque I spotted. First 2 km of the run
  • Entertainment along the way - this at Company Garden
    Entertainment along the way - this at Company Garden
  • Lovely buildnings at Company Garden
    Lovely buildnings at Company Garden
  • Mini water bags at water stations - Cute!
    Mini water bags at water stations - Cute!
  • Climbing the Bo Kaap area
    Climbing the Bo Kaap area
    Climbing the Bo Kaap area
  • At the top of BoKaap area
    At the top of BoKaap area
  • Table Mountain at the backdrop
    Table Mountain at the backdrop
  • At the top of Pentz Street, Bo Kaap
    At the top of Pentz Street, Bo Kaap
  • Colorful houses at Bo Kaap
    Colorful houses at Bo Kaap
    Colorful houses at Bo Kaap
  • Ran Around the Stadium
    Ran Around the Stadium

What I enjoyed most about the race :

  • Supportive community
    There were volunteers every 100 meters, cheering and managing the traffic throughout the run!  They dressed up in tutus, skirts and other fancy attires. Not only that, the residents at Bo Kaap area came out from their homes and cheer! The runners were close knit and friendly. Alhamdulillah, I felt at home and made new friends at the run.
  • Coke at water stations
    A coke lover like me would just find the drinks super refreshing. They even had coke zero at water stations. There was a water shortage in Cape Town and they provided drinking water packed in small green and blue plastic bags. Only coke was served in cups.

    Coke Lover was happy

  • Opportunity to check out the city on foot
    The route took me along historical and tourist sites on foot.It was a lovely and relaxing morning run. The cut off time was 3 hours 30 minutes and I took my time to finish the race. I stopped many times to capture beautiful moments. I spotted four mosques and suraus along the run. Even the race kit area was held at a historical site – Castle of Good Hope. All runners received free entrance ticket to District Six, also a historical site.

Here are more pictures!

Mosque at Bo Kaap

Mosque at Bo Kaap

Mosque at Bo Kaap

Mosque at Bo Kaap

 

Many pleas to protect Bo Kaap as Heritage Site

The Medal

I would love to run again at Cape Town! It was simply an amazing experience!

 

SCKLM: Suraus for Muslim Runners

Standard Chartered KL Marathon is only a few days left and we want you to go through the smoothest experience you’ve ever had. This time round we would like to help all the muslims to feel at ease performing prayers during the running period.

Here are the routes provided by the organizer:

Half Marathon Route Map

For half marathon, the suggested prayer area is located at the side road of the Lebuhraya Duta – Ulu Kelang (DUKE) when you’ve reached 11km, slightly after you pass the water station. Though there is only one surau suggested here, there are also few mosque along the road.

The first mosque you’ll pass through is the Masjid Jamek before you hit 1km running. After 14km running, you’ll meet another mosque Masjid Wilayah Persekutuan. If you can make it on time, at the end of the route, you’ll see the last mosque which is Masjid Negara.

 

Full Marathon Route Map

As for Full Marathon, more suraus are suggested here. The first surau you’re going to pass is at 14km running (close to Tabung Haji & water station). Then, you’ll see a surau by the road side of Jalan Ampang after 15km run. After Kompleks Sukan Datuk Keramat and LRT Jelatek you’ll find another surau located at the road side of Jalan Jelatek. At 19km run, the surau is located close to the checkpoint by the road of Jalan Setiawangsa. The last surau that is suggested for marathoner is close to the checkpoint is at the DUKE road, that is after 26km running.

Just to inform, the mosque available near the route is the same as what the half marathoner will pass: Masjid Jamek, Masjid Wilayah Persekutuan and Masjid Negara.

Few tips on prayer guidance:

  1. Don’t forget your prayers even when you’re running
  2. Jangan lupa solat walaupun bersukan berjam-jam! (in bahasa Malaysia)

Hope this helps! Share it with others so they can also schedule their prayers early before the run! 🙂

Short vs Long Run. Which works for you?

Ever wonder if short or long run is better for you? After a weekend of long runs, and many months of short runs prior to that, here are my findings:

  1. Short runs are good to improve speed
    Frequent short runs are good. Go intense if you want to be fueled by carbs, but go easy if you want to be fueled by fat. Balance your running schedule between running fast and going easy. Running fast or intensely  puts stress on your muscles, but in a good way as it pushes you to improve. Running at easy pace is relaxing on your muscles – much needed in your routine
  2. Push to your limits at long runs occasionally
    You get to improve endurance at long runs. Try run within good heart rates and balance between improving timing and distance. To me, both short and long runs must go hand in hand.
  3. Let your body recover well
    Short or long, fast or slow, make sure your body recovers well. Your body needs to rest and take time off. Here’s a recovery plan for half and full marathon. Let your muscles heal and energy restored.

MY STORY OF LONG RUNS BACK TO BACK

My week ended with much sore and pain after a 12 km and 21 km run back to back. I am a recreational runner who runs for fitness. I hardly go for competitive races for various reasons, but last weekend I did two long distance runs.

Normally, I would run 5 km on average 5 times a week as my focus the past months was to improve speed. Three days before the back to back long runs, I trained and ran 12 km within 1 hr 17 mins. I was happy with the speed but not happy with the after effect on my knee. I felt acute pain on right knee.

When I was running fast and injured my knee after

When I was running fast and injured right knee after.

I rested for 3 days and went to the 12 km and 21 km weekend runs with least expectations – not being able to run at all.  l didn’t want to miss MHWH Night Run by AIA Vitality 12km run at MAEPS so I tried my luck, joined the crowd and started running slowly.

Surprisingly, there was no pain. So, I kept running and increased speed along the way. I finished with no injury at 01:39:02, and felt I should prepare for the PJ Half Marathon, the morning after. At the PJ Half Marathon, I ran slowly the first 5 km and increased speed as I felt no pain on my knee. But the hills, especially along the last 3 km were killers. My pelvic started to become stiff and I was not able to run faster. I completed 21 km within official time 2:43:50. Not my personal best, but thankful for sure!

Elevation Nightmare PJ Half Marathon

My pace & elevation at PJ Half Marathon 2017

The soreness and pain went away quickly and I now realised I should have a better training plan that combines short and long runs to avoid injuries and to improve performance and endurance. No last minute long distance training after this.

All well and done, my knees are fine. Now, here are some captured moment!

  1. MHWH Night Run by AIA Vitality  : 22nd July 2017
MHWH Night Run by AIA Vitality Pacers

MHWH Night Run by AIA Vitality  21km Pacers

Nadia Noi the 21km Pacer

With Nadia Noi the 21km Pacer

After 12km MHWH Night Run 2017

It was Nuha’s first 12km run.

2. PJ Half Marathon : 23rd July 2017

Intan Suraya after a back to back 21km, 12km and 21km runs

Amazing Intan Suraya ran 21km, 12km and 21km runs over the weekend!

More than 4000 half marathon runners

More than 4000 half marathon runners waiting for flagoff

Nashata Runners

WIth Intan Siza – the Nashata Runner. Picture by ActionPixMalaysia

Looking forward to improve training and run better at my next half marathon! A mix of both short and long runs that is!

5 Things You Need To Know If You Swap Bibs

Do you know the ramifications of changing bib ‘illegally’- that is without proper personal data changing? Ever wondered the consequences of joining sporting events using someone else’s personal data ? These are the 5 things that may occur :

1 : Next of kin uncontactable 

When you get injured or faint, the medics on duty will immediately send you to a health centre for further treatment. The contact number stated on the bib will be dialled to inform family members or guardians. Imagine if the contacted person is far from the incident and came all way just to find that the one injured isn’t their relative. Well, that ignites the fire within.

2 : Organizer has no information of you at all

Almost the same situation as Scenario 1. Only the organizer will be interrogating you till you’re bummed out. That is, if you’re still alive. Don’t even mention the word DEATH. How are they going to solve this issue when not a single personal information of yours is stated on the bib?

Muslimah Runners with Bib

Muslimah Runners with Bib.

3 : Wrong medical treatment 

Still the same situation but with a different fallout. What if the medics request for your medical data? For example, getting information on your blood type or allergies or diseases you’re diagnosed with. If the data stated on the bib isn’t yours, they could treat your illness with the wrong remedies. This may lead to instant death.

4 : Recognition not yours

Even if you’re running your best to the point where you’re on the brink of unconsciousness, you don’t get to receive the medal you ran so hard for, nor do you have the chance to bask in glory on the podium. The timing is also not yours but belongs to the ‘official’ racer. Wouldn’t that be a waste of your effort?

5 : Your reputation at stake

Be respectable in the sporting event as equal participants.  What would you say if you were to bump into another runner you know while wearing another person’s bib? People may perceive you as a cheater, and could ruin your reputation. Even if you were to try avoid this by not wearing a bib, the consequences are on you if you faint with no contact number for the medics to call.

So, do you still want to use someone else’s bib? If you are unable to race and would like to transfer to someone else, check with organizer or race director if possible. If it is, make sure all information is updated accordingly.

[Credits to Redz Ismail, a daily marathon runner, for the tips.]

Redz Ismail is as seasoned runner & a friend to Nashata Runners.

Redz Ismail is a seasoned runner & a friend to Nashata Runners.

City Spin & Standard Chartered KL Marathon 2017

Diversity is beautiful – everyone is unique, yet we should celebrate the difference. Due to it’s immense popularity, history, and significance, SCKLM 2017 is one of the highlights for most runners. Never have I ever seen a running event which brings thousands of people from various background, fitness level, and goals! The beauty of diversity among runners was highlighted and deeply appreciated both before and during the event.

Before The Big Day

My running group, Kyserun Krew, organized a friendly, fun run called City Spin 2017. It was a short 4.5K run around KLCC and Jalan Ampang, giving runners a quick tour of KL and what to anticipate for tomorrow’s event. Everyone had a good time, taking photos of the iconic buildings and landmarks in the city. Thankfully, the morning rain was starting to subside so the weather was good too!

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Besides shaking out the butterflies in your stomach before the big day and to stretch out those legs, the main aim of this event was to gather various running crews through out Malaysia, as well as welcome those who came from abroad such as Indonesia, Korea, and other countries. After all, what better way to break the ice among runners other than to run? Every running crew might have different principles and culture, yet united by the same, common love for running.

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All photo credit belongs to Syahiran of Kyserun Krew. Thank you!

On the Big Day

At 4 in the morning, I found myself catching the train among a sea of blue sleeveless tops. I was glad that I will be able to arrive early and not worry about parking at the event venue. On the train, I can hear different conversations; some were really serious yet confident, discussing about their strategies and training for the past few months, while others were nervous, excited, or sleepy. Yet, everyone had a single goal in mind: To complete SCKLM, in whatever distance that they chose.

Never have I ever seen so many runners congregate in a single location, except at SCKLM events! Besides runners, the crowd was overwhelming; the streets were packed with not only runners, but supporters, curious on-lookers, and security enforcers too. SCKLM has turned into an event that should be celebrated and inclusive to everyone. To overcome the massive crowd, take advantage of the facilities that the organizer have provided for this event, such as the free train service (my favorite part of the event), bag drop (pack everything that you need, it’s going to be a loooong day), and freebies from the sponsors. Most importantly, come early and prepared, at least 45 mins before your starting to time so you are not rushed to go to the bag drop counter, do your pre-race rituals, and get into the correct starting pen.

Year after year, SCKLM has been a good and memorable experience for me. What I love most about it was not the route or the medal, but the high spirit and energy through out the event. Every runner will feel like a winner! Without a doubt, I will definitely be back again for more next year.

A familiar face that requires no introduction

A familiar face that requires no introduction

One with my Krew!

One with my Krew!

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Thanks to Nashata’s Iman Hijab range, you can now match your hijab with your bib number too!

Read about last year’s SCKLM 2016 experience here

Until next week,

The Weekend Runner

The 19.8km “half marathon”

IMG_8107Malaysia Women Marathon (MWM), it feels good to be back! Since this is one of the few women-only running events in Malaysia, I would like to give my full support and hopefully, make a difference in the female community. This year I decided to run in the half marathon category instead (last year I did the full marathon).

Here are 3 highlights of the running event:

1.Race kit collection venue

I loved the venue of the race kit collection (Acapella Hotel) because parking and location was convenient, not to mention it was fully air-conditioned too! Plus there were forums, talks, and discussions on-going at the main stage, which were very informative and educational. Here are some of the pictures out and about the REPC:

Dropped by Nashata's booth to check out the new EZ skirt

REPC will not be complete if I did not drop by Nashata’s booth to check out the new EZ skirt!

A familiar face that requires no introduction

Bumped into familiar face that requires no introduction

Unfortunately, the organizers forgot to print my official pacer’s bib number despite him already registering a few weeks prior to this event.This resulted in a very unprofessional-looking bib number with his details hastily scribbled using a marker pen:IMG_8117

2.Route

IMG_8137Just like last year, the route was ‘hilly’ as ever, but I was prepared for it. With the help of my official pacer, we were on track to break my PB. He helped me keep my focus, and pushed me when necessary.

Unfortunately, the half marathon distance did not even reach 20km. I don’t feel like I deserve this medal. Perhaps the organizers should replace the “21KM” engraving on the back with “19.8KM” instead:IMG_8119

3. Overall vibe and atmosphere of the event

Today, the ladies ran the show while the men took the supporting role as pacers.There was certainly so much love for the ladies. Go get ’em PBs and podiums, girl!

I would like to send some love to the cheer squad for spreading some positive vibes through the posters at KM17 the last few kilometers was certainly the hardest. (All cheer squad photos are courtesy of Kyserun Krew):

IMG_8145BJ6A1282IMG_8146

 

Why the Malaysia ? Women ? Marathon is so Special

Whenever MWM is around the corner, I get both excited and agitated; excited to meet the runners and customers, and agitated because I wanted to run but uncertain if I could. I have to balance between spending time with my customers and running, both of which I enjoy.

veteran Runner Intan Suraya finished her 10th full marathon strong

Veteran Runner Intan Suraya finished her 10th full marathon strong. She never fails to run the marathon at MWM

Back to why the MWM is so special. It is beyond running. It is about enriching women to grow. This year, there were a two-day workshop plus a dialogue session on the 3rd and 4th March respectively, followed by the run on the 5th March. Here are the three things that happened at the MWM 2017. Be prepared to view loads of pictures. They tell the stories better  ?

1. The Workshop & Dialogues
Women Empowerment Workshop, supported by Gorgeous Geeks on 3rd March (Friday)
About 50 ladies from Pusat Wanita Berdaya (PWB) Selangor attended the session on online marketing, personal branding and organic and halal cosmetic industry. Pusat Wanita Berdaya is a platform to encourage women of local communities to be actively involved in community works and also business related to empower their family economic background. Julia Koh, Azrina Naimuddin and I got to share our experiences. It was a good session; many took pictures of our sharing. If you are keen to know what I have shared, you can download my deck here. Details of the workshop can be found here.

Gorgeous Geek Speakers

Ladies from Gorgeous Geek ; Alecia Heng, Julia Koh & I

Pusat Budaya Wanita Selangor

Attentive ladies from Pusat Budaya Wanita Selangor

Lyana and Farah - my running adik-adik TKCOGA just know how to have fun!

Lyana and Farah – my running adik-adik TKCOGA just know how to have fun!

Women Dialogue Session on Gender Equality on 4th March (Saturday)
A panel of women and a man shared their thoughts about gender equality, by YB Zuraida Kamaruddin, Pn. Hajjah Noraida Yusof, Anas Alam Faizli and Freda Liu, moderated by Hazleen Aziz. Then many of us wrote & signed our pledges on the Wall of Gender Equality. My other half was supposed to sign with me, but he was away… so I signed for both.

Signing our Pledge on the Wall of Gender Equality

Signing our Pledge on the Wall of Gender Equality

                           “We are equal but not the same” by Ritz & Eliza

To me, we both have equal rights but the rights are not the same. Our abilities are not the same either.

The ladies behind the MWM : YB Dr. Daroyah & Pn Noorul

Among the ever-supportive ladies behind MWM : YB Dr. Daroyah & Pn Noorul

2. The Expo

The expo coincided with the Race Kit collection days. It was where the sponsors like Nashata offer great bargains for runners. I have to applaud the staffs at Accapella Hotel Shah Alam for providing great hospitality. They were helpful and generous – offering good assistance at all times.

We released a few new products at our booth and many cool running items were marked down – so that the runners get value for money. Next time, we will get a bigger booth for a better shopping experience for you ladies. Thank you so much for your patience. ?

Sarah & Nazura from Nashata

The girls who worked worked tirelessly the past 3 days – Sarah & Nazura

3. The Run
I wanted to run but agitated because I knew I would be tired prior to the race. I needed enough sleep, rest and well-hydrated to run. My plan to run from 42km, got knocked down to 21km and after setting up Nashata booth at 545am, I felt like trying my luck to run the 10km. So ask if I could run and got lucky. I was so delighted to get a bib to run.  So off I went running at 630am from Stadium Shah Alam. It was a good day, a hilly route, and I have no complains except Alhamdulillah.

Lydia Hashim & I after 10km Run

Lydia Hasim & I after 10km Run. We were overtaking each other and later finished together. Lydia is one of the first Malaysian duo who cycled Across Sahara last month, recognised by the Malaysia Book of Record

 

Rezeki on a Sunday Morning

Rezeki on a Sunday morning. My Garmin watch was my timing chip. Finished within 1:07:38 +- 10 secs.

Happy to see Datin Paduka Marina Mahathir

#RunHappy. Vanida Imran, Datin Paduka Marina Mahathir & Ivy Josiah ran happy with friends

Fara Fauzana & running fans

Fara Fauzana & running fans

Maslina & friend - 21km finisher

Maslina Muhamad & Azlina Abdullah looking great after their 21km run

Siti all drenched after the run

Siti all drenched after the run

Alecia Heng & family ran the 6km category

The running Gorgeous Geek – Alecia Heng brought her family to run the 6km category

Dr Sarah Shamsuddin the Running Doctor wears Nashata leggings, skirt & sports hijab

Dashing Dr Sarah Shamsuddin, the MWM Running Doctor wears Nashata leggings, skirt & sports hijab

Runners are the MWM 2017

Runners have most creative POSES. This by Maslina Muhamad

Emmy the Active Mom

Emmy is always in Sporting events with her children. Such a sporting supportive  Mom. She wears Nashata Azza Toplectic

Karen Loh - The strong lady behind 5 consecutive years of MWM

Last but not least, Karen Loh – The strong classy lady behind 5 consecutive years of MWM. ??

There were more things to enjoy at the MWM like the flyyoga and children’s run. Check out Aina theweekendrunner’s post for her side of the story. She ran the 21 km half marathon.

If you missed this year’s MWM, try not to miss it in 2018. MWM 2017 is a wrap with Alhamdulillah. See you next year, InsyaAllah.

Run. Eat. Repeat!

If there’s anything that I love more than running or working out is food. Combine those 2 things together, you get a marathon that is worth repeating year after year! Twincity Marathon is unique because it is a big-scaled running event that has an abundance of food (the only event that I have experienced lots and lots of food are ultramarathons because there are not many participants). On top of that, it also provides prayer facilities at several water stations that is well-planned for both fast and slow runners.

Our big family of runners and pacers

Our big family of runners and pacers

I decided to participate again in this year’s half marathon category. Last year, I went as a “ghost” runner in the same category (run without a bib, no medal at the finishing line waiting for you, and pray you don’t get caught!) so I did not have the privilege and luxury of time to enjoy the generous spread of food at several water stations. However, I still had a great experience so it was worth paying and registering instead of participating as a “ghost” again.

Me after crossing the finishing line last year. Run at your own risk, "ghost" runners

Me after crossing the finishing line last year. Run at your own risk, “ghost” runners.

Except for the inconveniences during the bib collection (the Men’s 21km bib were not ready on time), Twincity Marathon was certainly an event not to be missed. Besides the food and the thoughtful prayer facilities, it is also a relatively flat route with minimal elevation. It would have been a great opportunity for me to set another PB, however I admit I did not train enough prior to this event but mainly, I was distracted by so much food. Blame it on my short attention span!

Do you expect me to choose between running and eating?

Do you expect me to choose between running and nasi lemak?

Can you make mine with those swirly leafs on top with extra foam?

Can you make mine with those swirly leafs on top with extra foam?

After all of that good food, you need dessert at the end to top it all off

After all of that good food, you need dessert at the end to top it all off. This is Malaysian ice cream by the way, with frozen pink syrup and condensed milk.

Even more food at the finishing line! Wait, there was a finishing line? I forgot that this was a running event, not a feast

Even more food at the finishing line! Wait, there was a finishing line? I forgot that this was a running event, not a feast

For once, I was not really disappointed about not hitting any PB or target. I might have not been able to perform my best for that day, but I still had a good time because I really enjoyed myself. I would do this run all over again next year, and I hope that the organizers keep up the fun vibe for this event!

Too much sugar and ice cream, girls?

Too much sugar and ice cream, girls?

A familiar face that requires no introduction. So glad to be seeing you back in running events, buddy!

A familiar face that requires no introduction. So glad to be seeing you back in running events, buddy!

Until next week,

The Weekend Runner.

The Local Runcation

Everyone loves a vacation, especially when there is some running involved. To officially start the 2017 running season, I took part in AIA Vitality’s Men’s Health Women’s Health (MHWH) Night Run in Johor, running in the 21km category.

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MHWH Night Run is no stranger to those who are already familiar with the Malaysian race calender. In fact, I have ran in the same event but in a different location and edition . However, for 2016’s edition, the MHWH Night Run Penang-Putrajaya-Johor series is special because it is sponsored by AIA Vitality. In line with their aspirations to encourage a healthy lifestyle, AIA Vitality have kicked off a series of night runs since 2016 starting from Penang and later to Putrajaya. Unfortunately, due to my travelling schedule I was unable to attend both previous events at Penang and Putrajaya so I was glad that I was able to make it this time.

Under AIA Vitality, the scale of the event has increased tremendously. With the large number of participants, we were glad that we were allowed to post our race kits straight to our doorstep. Another significant improvement was the distance. If my memory serves me right, the longest distance for the previous edition was only 12km, but this year it has expanded to include 21km as well. The best part of this event was that there were also pacers to help you hit your PB or your target!

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AIAVitalityNightRun2017JB-DDY_2009-PhotobyAllIsAmazingPacers in any event for half marathon distance is always a good idea

Despite participating in a few night runs for the past few years, this is my first time running a half marathon at night time. In fact, most of my night training are usually less than 10km. However, with adequate rest and proper food (very challenging since you are on a runcation – you’re too excited to rest and eat properly) I don’t think it will affect your performance.

So to prepare myself for the night run, I took about 1 hour nap before heading out to the race village. We arrived quite early so there were plenty of opportunity to mingle around with other running crews and meet new faces. Some of them also happen to be pacers for the event, so there was a good mix of various age, gender, and experience range for the pacers.

I tried to follow the 2:20 hour pacer and kept up for as long as I could. Eventually, my pace dropped and I felt a slight disappointment when I could not even catch up with the 2:30 hour pacers. In the end, I completed my half marathon in 2 hours and 37 minutes. Looks like there is no PB renewal this time L

Despite not being able to achieve my sub 2:30 target, running in Johor has been a wonderful experience. The crowd was supportive, the atmosphere was positive, and the event was smooth. This event has certainly set the bar high for the next MHWH Night Run edition, and I hope in the future the event will be bigger and better.

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Until next week,

The Weekend Runner.

The Kuching Marathon when I no longer run with my legs

Yesterday, I ran the Kuching Marathon for the second time. It is one of my favourite homeground running events that I never miss.

At the REPC..I'm very excited to run soon!

At the REPC..Looking very excited to run!

What’s exciting about the run was that I did a back to back full marathon (FM). A week before, I ran a full marathon (42.195km) at the Standard Charted Kuala Lumpur Marathon better known as SCKLM.  My goal was to  finish BOTH marathons without injury and I did it! Hoyeahh!

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Hoyeahh! I finished strong after back to back FM.


After coming back from SCKLM, I was very busy attending classes and lectures. Honestly, a week before the Kuching Marathon I didn’t run much, only carbo-loading and hydrating myself well. I believed that all I needed was a good rest and to continue loading myself with carbs since there was only a week gap before the Kuching Marathon.

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I couldn’t wait to arrive at the finish line,..but before that let’s take a pic first!

I was glad that the number of participants at the Kuching Marathon increased this year. Yayy! Here’s the breakdown:

  • 5km – 2200
  • 10km – 1897
  • 21km – 2343
  • 42km – 1658
    (info from KPD Kuching)

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It was almost time to flag off,..and everybody was soo excited!

The full marathon flagged off at 2am. I liked it early because first  – no sunburn and second – the weather would not be not that hot. I was hoping to finish the run before 8 am.

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Yayy! Aina was back hometown for this event! Run Aina run!

The route was almost flat with some not-so-hilly, and long, never ending road. I started my first 10 km with paces ranging from 5.30 to 6.30 min per km and the timing for first 10 km was 59 min. For the next 11 km, my average pace dropped to 7 to 8.30 min per km, hence my timing was 2 hr 21 min for the first 21 km. Oh ya, I did spend 6-8 minutes for toilet stop at the Shell petrol station nearby. Hmm, how I wished that I didn’t stop.

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Running with energy for a selfie ;P The Nashata hoodie top keeps my head dry from morning dew

It was cold and humid, and was sure most of the runners performed best at their first 21 km. I then continued running until km 32. It was already 5.50 am and I stopped at the Petronas Petrol Station nearby for about 7-8 min to perform Fajr prayer.

By the time I started running back, it was already 6 am. If I really wanted go for sub 5, I only had about one hour left for my last 10 km. However, sub 1 for my last 10 km was probably impossible. I remained positive and changed my target to sub 5 hr 15 min, 1 min earlier from my timing at SCKLM – 5hr 16min.

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I like this pic very much! I look like an Olympians..teehee 😛 photo credit to DNA Sport 🙂

I kept telling myself, “just keep running, this suffering is almost at its end”

My last 5 km was really tough, as I was fighting with myself to complete within my target. I no longer ran with my legs, I ran with heart. I kept running, no matter how slow it was, at least I kept moving. I kept my pace within 9 to 10.30 km/min, and at that time, I could no longer feel my leg. All I could feel was my socks soaking in sweat, my big toes felt like being pressed, this and that…my only wish was that I could just walk.

Towards the finish line, there were a few cheering squats who kept entertaining the runners. I ran even faster towards my last 500 m., and yet that 500 m felt like 500 km. Arghh!

Finally, I finished my 10th Full Marathon strong at the Kuching Marathon in 5 hours 9 min.*drum rolls*.. Yayy, mission sub 5hr 15min accomplished and 7 minutes earlier from FM SCKLM. Alhamdullilah.

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My first time running in Amin Sports Hijab and I love it. I love the look and the feel. Yeahh! I made it! Forget the mile, and just remember the glory 😉

Overall, the traffic was well controlled and organised. However, the water stations had limited supply of  plain water and isotonic drink. Runners had to queue up and share cups to drink, to our inconvenience. My take home message is to bring small bottle at my next run. Should the organiser fail to provide enough water throughout the run, at least I have my own.

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Thank you guys for support 😉 and not to forget, Fatin finished her first run, a 10km within cut off time..congrats! *claps

Before I went back, I managed to meet up with some friends who flew in from Peninsular just to race. Ermm, not entirely, they flew in for Kek Lapis and Mee kolok too 😛

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Congrats Khairul (in black shirt) for doing his personal best for his HM. And others, congrats guys for finishing strong.

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This superman did a back to back too,..with an awesome timing ,..sub 4.30..congrats Mambo!

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My medical lecturer (in blue hijab) also ran this morning,..she’s did 5km but overmileage with 3km add on! Congrats Dr! Next time she should upgrade to 10km 😉

When someone tells you, ‘You can’t’, turn around and say, ‘Watch me!’ ….And the bragging continues ….. 😛

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We continued bragging,..because the suffer is astounding!

Before the moment ended, we celebrated our victory with…..tadaaa!

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Mee Kolok with FM finisher medal add-on!

Till then, we shall meet again in next post 🙂

Keep running and be inspired!