DNF? Know your limits!

Base on official result of recent Malaysia Women Marathon 2017, 8% of the Full Marathon participants and 1.5% of the Half Marathon participants did not finish (DNF) the race.

DNF or do not finish is something that every runner would try to avoid during races. Even those who are injured or suffering from cramps would try to walk towards the finish line. Some may say they are heroes, some would say that they are hurting themselves. But, as for me,..I wouldn’t want to arrive the finish line by an ambulance.

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Reach finishing line within cut off time is every runner’s aim 😉

I have participated in 9 Half Marathons (21km), 12 Full Marathons (42km) and 4 Ultra and alhamdulillah, I finished them all strong.

DNF may occur for a few reasons, and I would like to share with you the common four  and how to avoid them.

1. Lack of training and experience

If you have never trained for a long run; 15km, 20km, don’t even register for a Half Marathon, or even a Full Marathon. Know your limits. As for me, before I join a 10km run, I would run 10km 3-4 times a week. Once satisfied with the timing, I would join a competitive running event. Same goes with the Half Marathon. After I have trained for 21km distances, only then I’d join an event. As for 42km (Full Marathon), I started to join after running 8 Half Marathons. I joined Ultra after I have completed 9 Full Marathons. The point here is you need to have a lot of training and experiences from every single run that you join before you upgrade yourself to another longer distance.

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I try to run 10km at least , 3-4 times a week to maintain my stamina. 🙂

2. You don’t fuel yourself enough 

Some may DNF due to electrolyte imbalance; they may experience cramps or vomiting after half way, and this leads to dehydration. Some may have stomachache, due to spicy food they eat the night or day before. To avoid these problems, do take a lot of fluid ; drink a lot of water, isotonic drink a week before the event to ensure you hydrate well. Eat extra amount of carbohydrate and protein too. On the day of the event or a day before, avoid spicy food. As for me, if the event starts at 4am, my last meal the night before would be at 8pm and if after 8pm, I would take bananas and water. If you eat enough prior to the race, you don’t even need any energy bar/energy gel during the race. Your body is already prepared to use up all the glycogen to transform into glucose once you are in state of starving.

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Fuel yourself enough before and after race.

3. You don’t plan your run

Strategy is very important in every race. As for me, for a 21 km race, I would try to finish the first 10km within my usual time – 1 hour. And then, the next 11 km dragged to 1 hour 10 minutes. If it rains or if the route is tough or if I experience a cramp, I would still finish within 2 hours 30 minutes, InsyaAllah. If you continue slow jog or power walk for the last 5-8 km, you could finish under 3 hours, as long as you run your best the first 10-15 km. As for Full Marathon, my personal best is 4 hours and 57 minutes. My strategy is, I would aim my first 10km within 1 hour  to 1 hour 10 minutes and next 10km within 1 hour 20-30 minutes. So, my first 21km would be at least 2 hours 30 minutes, the slowest. If you maintain 1 hour 30 minutes (pace- 9min/km) for another 2 sets of 10km, InsyaAllah you can finish under 5 hours and 30 minutes. If you can push yourself enough, you would make it within 5 hours and 15 minutes. Last year, I finished my full marathon SCKLM in 5 hours 16 minutes, read my experience → https://blog.nashata.com/?p=6391

Full Marathon at Standard Chartered Kuala Lumpur Marathon 2017

Full Marathon at Standard Chartered Kuala Lumpur Marathon 2016

4. Not enough rest

Lack of rest and sleep will affect your performance at the race. This issue is not strange if you go for runcation (run + vacation). The tips here is go to the place earlier (1-2 days earlier) so that you can rest well before the race. You will not be in a rush and have more time to calm down and focus during the race.

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Having enough rest is the key for you to recover well after the race.

DNF is better than DNS (Do Not Start). So, whatever challenges there may be, let’s plan ahead and pray for injury-free and pleasant races. After all, what’s is the most important is TRAINING. Train hard, believe in yourself and with that, InsyaAllah, you will finish strong and happy.

Till then, keep running and be inspired!

#NashataRun4Charity for South Africa Children Centre

In March 2017, Fatimah, Intan Suraya, Nahsuhah,  Saamiyah, Zaheda and Zainab (not her real name)  volunteer to run more than 600 km as a team to raise funds for Baitul Aman. For every 1km they run, Nashata will contribute RM1 to Baitul Aman. You can help sponsor them too and make their run worth more for the children at Baitul Aman.

As of 22nd March, the running sisters have ran 457 km. Zaheda tops the team with 124km to date. Make their sweat worth more and more for the children they wish to help. Sponsor at least USD5 to these runners at LaunchGood or RM22 at Nashata

Zaheda runs in niqab and the most in the pack!

Zaheda from Durban runs in niqab and the most in the pack!

Zaheda runs the most and fastest in the pack!

Zainab runs fast and diligently. She keeps us on our toes!

Intan Suraya runs a full marathon and 2 half marathon in March

Intan Suraya runs a full marathon and 2 half marathon in March

Nahsuhah - The fastest and youngest in the team

Nahsuhah – The fastest and youngest in the team

Saamiyah & her running team

Saamiyah in Nashata Azza Toplectic & her running team at her 1st full marathon Oct’16

We update the team everyday and support each other

We update the team everyday and support each other

Why you should sponsor the run?

You can be a part of the cause and help our running sisters make a bigger impact for Baitul Aman. Make their sweat worth more and more for the children they wish to help. Sponsor at least USD5 to these runners at LaunchGood or RM22 at Nashata

Why Baitul Aman, La Mercy?

Our running sisters from South Africa feel strongly about children and education. They collectively chose Baitul Aman to be the recipient of the cause. With the increase of the HIV and AIDS pandemic, the number of abandoned babies and neglected children from diverse backgrounds requires Baitul Aman  to cover conventional child and youth care programme as well as others. The home takes care on average 48 children including abandoned babies.

What is the duration of the fund raising?

Our running sisters started running for Baitul Aman from 1st March ’17 and will stop 31st March ’17. However, the sponsorship continues until 10 April ’17

What happens to the sponsorship?

The amount sponsored via launchgood will be transferred directly to Baitul Aman.  Fatimah, Saamiyah, Zaheda and Zainab (the runners) will visit the center to deliver sponsorship from Nashata at the end of the campaign.

You can be apart of this too. You can :

  • Sponsor the runners at least USD5
  • Virtual run with the runners wherever you are. You can post your runs and use hashtags #nashatavirtualrun4charitySouthAfrica #nashatavirtualrun4charity
  • Follow and support the runners on social media. These are the hashtags for the run #nashatavirtualrun4charitySouthAfrica #nashatavirtualrun4charity

About Nashata Run For Charity

It is a virtual run that aims to raise funds for ‘Charity of Choice’ in a new country every month. Nashata runners together with a group of runners in respective country would run virtually for the whole month. Nashata pays RM1 for every 1 KM each runner’s mileage. Nashata Run for Charity fosters 3 things:-

  • Stronger Sisterhood
  • Strengthen Fitness
  • Support a Cause

Started first in Brunei in Feb ’17, the run gathers four female runners from respective country and two Nashata runners who volunteer to run as much as they could to raise fund for a charity of their cause in the country.

In March’17, six Nashata runners from South Africa & Malaysia pledge to run to raise funds for Baitul Aman Children’s Home in South Africa. Be a part of the cause and help the runners make a bigger impact by sponsoring them with Nashata.

… more countries to be announced soon. If you are interested to participate please email contactus@nashata.com

 

Running the Tokyo Marathon

Well, my Tokyo Marathon journey has come to an end. It’s been almost a week since I, along with 36,000 other runners from all over the world, braved the cold weather and harsh winds and ran the streets of Tokyo. And I’m still on a runner’s high!

I had traveled to Tokyo with my new runner friend, Iman, who was introduced to me by another runner friend, Melisa. In fact, the first time we met face-to-face was at the airport, LOL! But, this is what I love about the running community. With our love for running as our common denominator, we immediately clicked and had a great time exploring Tokyo together.

Once we had landed in Tokyo, our first area of business was to pick up our bibs and running packs at the Expo. After buying our Subway tickets and getting directions from the super friendly people at the Tourist Information Center, we were on our way to the Expo at Tokyo Big Sight. There were hundreds of runners there but the system set up was so efficient, we had our bibs, timing chips, race t-shirts and goodie bags in record time.

IMG-20170224-WA0011 (1)The day of the race was nerve wrecking to say the least. The race didn’t start until 9:10am but we were advised to arrive early as the security clearance and baggage drop-off process would take a while. In the end, we headed out from our Airbnb around 7am, with sufficient time to make it to the starting area, drop off our baggage, hydrate and make the ever important bathroom stop. The gates to the different starting pens opened at about 8:15am so it was here that I separated with the other Malaysian runners (they were in the quicker pace group).

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What I wore for the race: Riada Active Pants, Zip Up Azeeza Lite top, Hooda Racerback hijab with two Raazgloves (One underneath my hijab for added coverage and another as a neck warmer/face cover). All available from Nashata. I also wore and inner top ad inner pants for added warmth, compression socks and gloves.

IMG_20170226_085945  The 5:30 pacers in front of us, calmly waiting for the go ahead signal.

At 9:10am sharp, we heard the gun go off for the elite runners category. About 10 minutes later, we were released into the wave of runners heading towards the starting mat. We passed it 10 minutes later, which made it the longest delay to the starting mat after flagoff I’ve ever had. However, once we all started running, it was all good.

We started from the Shinjuku area, near the Tokyo Metropolitan Government building. Sidenote: Instead of paying to get a birds-eye view of Tokyo at the Tokyo Tower or Tokyo Skytree, go here instead. There are two observatory towers and both are accessible for free! The first 6km of the race took us past the Shinjuku-Gyoen national park and also the Science Musuem. It was also mostly downhill so unintentionally, I ran it at a much faster pace than intended. It wasn’t until I reached that first checkpoint did I look down at my pace and decided to slow down a bit.

The next 6km had us running parts of the Kanda and Ningyocho area. It was here that several performances were being performed to give the runners a boost if needed and also entertain the many spectators of the race.

IMG_20170226_101820Cultural dance performances made the race special and were a treat for international and local runners alike.

The first loop of the race came about km15, near the Asakusa area. It was here we got glimpses of the elite runners as they had already made the turn way ahead of us. Asakusa’s most recognizable landmark is the Kaminarimon Gate, where one can see the huge red lantern, protected by the Gods, Fujin and Raijin.

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Funfact: That huge red lantern weighs about 700 kilograms!

Heading towards the 25km mark, the race heated up as more and more supporters lined up to cheer the runners along. This Ryogoku – Fukagawa area showcased many landmarks such as the Tomika Hachimangu Shrine, the Edo-Tokyo Museum, the Ekoin Temple and the Sumida Hokusai Museum.

IMG_20170226_115356The cheerleaders were a welcome sight after reaching the halfway point.

After the 25km mark, we started to see a lot of runners stop beside the road to stretch and walk around a bit. I have to admit, I was one of them. The cold really got to me, despite my many layers of clothing. However, the cheers of the crowd yelling “Gambatte” and “Fighto” pushed us to carry on.

Heading towards the finishing line, we were treated to sights of the Tokyo Tower and parts of Hibiya Park.

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Modeled after the Eiffel Tower, the Tokyo Tower stands at 333 meters and is the world’s tallest, self-supported steel tower.

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The last stretch before the turn towards the finishing line was, in my opinion, the most emotional I’ve ever ran. Hundreds of supporters were cheering the runners on, many of whom I took time to give and receive high-fives and shouts of congratulations. Turning the last corner, I almost cried seeing the finishing line. The pain I felt throughout the race, fighting the cold, the leg cramps…it all disappeared once I crossed that mat. Volunteers rushed ahead to make sure I was OK then directed me towards my baggage pickup area.

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All finishers were given a medal and a finisher’s towel. Awesome!!

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Proud Malaysians with the Jalur Gemilang after the race.

Eventhough this is not my first Full Marathon, it is certainly the most memorable yet. I don’t know if it’s just a Japanese culture but the crowds and volunteers were top-notch. From start to finish, spectators were lined up along the roads, cheering and providing provisions for the runners. Some had drinks, some had candies, some had chocolate, some even had cooling sprays! I saw parents hold up signboards with pictures of their children, crying with joy when they spotted him/her along the course. Drones of families, some with small children (so cute!!), some even in wheelchairs came out to give their support. I can’t tell you how many times my spirit got lifted by the crowd. Even the volunteers were amazing; always serving with a smile, a high-five and words of encouragement. Eventhough I didn’t achieve my target time of 5:30, this Tokyo Marathon experience will certainly be one to remember fondly for all time.

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Arigato and Sayonara, Tokyo!

Winter Fitness in Dubai

Travelling and running? Why not? Especially when you get to run with fabulous sisters in Dubai. It was small crowd at the 2XU Compression Run Series : Race #3 at THE TRACK, Golf Clubhouse, Meydan, Dubai. There were 4 categories; 15km, 10km, 5 km and 3 km. I signed up for 5km to run with my daughter and other sisters.

Flag off for 10km

Flag off for 10km

The view of Downtown Dubai

The view of Downtown Dubai

It was a small friendly crowd, about 100 runners for 5 km category and more for 10km and 15km. We flagged off at 7am, one category after another. They provided 2 water stations for 5 km run and we get to see beautiful view of downtown Dubai. Families and friends run and support one another. After the run, we had a choice of bananas, apples, yummy muffins and coffee/tea/juices prepared for finishers.

The finisher medal

The finisher medal

I ran better in cold weather, I finished 4 for my category and the timing is not bad 31km. I typically finish a 5km in 35 mins. It was my personal best despite stopping twice to tie up my shoe lace and walking with my daughter shortly.

Nisa finishing the race

Nisa finishing the race

I am happy for my running sisters in Dubai; Amina and Shabna for taking up the challenge to race that day.

Special Thanks to my Running Sisters

Special Thanks to my Running Sisters

It was a beautiful fitness day in Dubai. Ironman was on going at Jumeirah Beach area the same day. While travelling back, sights of lean and focused cyclists and runners under the bright sunny day were decorating Jumeirah area.

Road blocks for cyclists

Ladies in Niqab were seen at the Ironman Arch

Ladies in Niqab cheering at the Ironman Arch

Ironman Dubai

Ironman Dubai

I like running in Dubai during winter cause I could run faster! Will come back again insyaAllah.

 

Because the struggle is real!

The Standard Charted KL Marathon is the biggest and the most famous running event in Malaysia. It is an event where all running communities gather and meet up. This year, I managed to join. Last year, it was cancelled due to the haze.

My flight from Kuching was at 5.30 pm and I touched down Kuala Lumpur 7 pm. It was 8 hours before the race. And I was nervous! Every Full Marathon always feel like my very first.

As early as 2 am, 2 hours before the race, thousands runners started to gather at Dataran Merdeka. We were all too excited for the race to start.

Let"s take wefie before run! yayy!

Let”s take wefie before run! yayy!

He managed to pace me for the first 21km ;) Thanks Hadi.

He managed to pace me for the first 21km 😉 Thanks Hadi.

Full marathon flagged off at 4am, and it was a long crowded queue at the starting line and the first 2 kilometers,it was just run easy pace since it was too crowded. I started to run at my own pace at kilometers 5 when people start to distance themselves.

I maintained my pace between 6 to 8 min/km until kilometres 21. By the Fajr time, I was already at Kilometres 16. It took 10 minutes to perform solah at the water station since we have to take turn. After the prayer, I continued to run. As I passed by the Duke and Akleh highways, the pace drop to 9 min/km. If you aim to finish sub 5.30, you can maintain this pace towards the end. Always watch out that the pacers for 5h 30 mins do not take over you.

Don't forget to smile at the camera!

Don’t forget to smile at the camera!

The water stations were available at almost every 3 km, provided with cold water and isotonic drink. It was very convenient for the runners because they could choose how frequent they needed to drink. As for me, I would drink although a sip at every water station. Water station is one of my motivations to run faster. I would try to run faster to reach the next water station.

Congrats Kak Eliza for doing PB in HM today! Keep it up!

Congrats Kak Eliza for doing PB in HM today! Keep it up!

Overall, the route was mainly Duke highway, Akleh highway and hilly route at Bukit Tunku at the last 6 km before the finish line. How I wish was wearing a pair of roller blades whenever I was close the finish line. The weather was too hot.

Am wearing Burgandy heather, pink Iman Hijab and Black Riada Pant from Nashata

I was wearing one of my favourite outfits – Burgundy heather, pink Iman Hijab and Black Riada Pant from Nashata

The finishing line is almost there! Never give up!

The finishing line is almost there! Never give up! Pic by : AKU, WONG

I managed to complete my 9th  Full Marathon in 5 hours 16 minutes with no injury. Alhamdullilah!

Yayy I make it!

Yayy I make it!

After the race, I was very pleased to meet some hijabi runners. Most of them just finished their HM. They finished strong too.

They are doing well today ;) Congrats guys!

They did well today 😉 Congrats guys!

Running events are where runners get to meet each other

Running events are where runners get to meet each other

This is my beautiful and strong Iranian friend,..she is doing 4 h 30 min in FM..congrats Reem!

This is my beautiful and strong Iranian friend,..she did 4 h 30 min for FM..congrats Reem!

I was very happy to see people running,..either young or old, skinny or obese,..they choose to run. Lets keep running and be inspired!

I flew back to Kuching at 3:15pm feeling accomplished.

Till we meet again 😉

 

The Orange Rose at AIAVitality MHWH NightRun Penang

The Queensbay Mall was flooded with runners in orange last night.

Runners in Orange

Runners in Orange

It was a humid night and some runners were already sweaty waiting for respective flag offs at the AIAVitality Men’s Health Women’s Health (MHWH) Night Run Village, located next to the mall.I was there to run my second 21km for this year and support #NashataRunners and friends. We had #NashataRunners : Sarah, Aqila, Lyana, Intan, Nahsuhah & I for 12km and 21km. I was also looking forward to run by the sea and enjoy the night scene of the Second Penang Bridge.

Nashata Runners 21 km

Nashata Runners 21 km

HIJABI 21KM PACER – the Orange Rose

The AIAVitality MHWHNightRun is a pivotal running event for #NashataRunners as one of our runners Nur Nahsuhah was given the opportunity to be the official pacer for 2 hour 21 min, 21km category. We were thrilled and happy for her. We knew she would do great because Nahsuhah has always been a great motivator and full of positivity.  Thank you AIAVitality for giving her the opportunity to pace.  Nahsuhah was the only female pacer among 11 pacers for 21 km. Alhamdullilah, not only she paced in a timely manner, she also enjoyed it that she is happy to do more in the future.

2:20 21 km Pacer

2:20 21 km Pacer

Intan Suraya, Nahsuhah and I were testing a lipcover specially for sports, so you will find our pictures with vibrant-colored lips. What do you girls think?

Intan Suraya & Nahsuhah

Intan Suraya & Nahsuhah 

NASHATA RUNNERS

The flag off for 21km was on time at 9 pm, and the runners were fast.  I was aiming to just finish the run since my right knee has been giving me pain everytime I train. I didn’t train for the past week and was saving the pain for the run.

Waiting for Flag-Off AIAVitality

Waiting for Flag-Off AIAVitality

Intan as usual ran effortlessly, ahead of me – slow and steady, and finished strong below 3 hours. I on the other hand, ran super slow and finished around 3 hour 18 min. It was good enough for me.
Nashata Supporter

Thank you Nashata Supporters for Running & Makan with Us!

Thanks to the well-organised run & super-cool runners – despite the heat, I enjoyed it. We ran down south and passed many factories at industrial zone. Safety was well-managed and many paramedics and ambulances were on standby throughout the route. The roads were closed and cordoned off nicely. Water stations were well managed by friendly volunteers who served us with water and isotonic drink. I wished they provided some salt water though.

Sultan Abdul Halim Muadzam Shah Bridge

The view of Sultan Abdul Halim Muadzam Shah Bridge / Second Penang Bridge last 8km of the run

It felt like an El-Nino run as it was hot and humid throughout the night run, until after 11:30 pm we got nice breeze countering us while running back to Queensbay Mall. The heat definitely tires me fast the first 8km.

The 12km run was flagged off earlier at 8:30pm. Sarah and Aqilah had so much fun at their very first 12 km run. Do expect these young girls to run more!

Sarah & Aqilla's 1st 12km Run

Nashata Runners : Sarah & Aqilah’s 1st 12km Run

GOODIES

Talking about goodies, we were pretty joyful receiving lots of stuffs inside the bag. The items received are Lucozade Sport’s drinks, Appeton Vitamins, drinking bottle, few CLEAR shampoos, a car figurine, GRABCAR wrist rubber band, a medal and lots of vouchers. Gosh, it felt like receiving presents from Santa Claus, LOL!

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A visit to Penang is not complete without eating Penang local food. We had ikan bakar after the run and the next morning, Lyana took us to a late breakfast at Pasar Taman Tun Sardon Penang. Penang – I shall come, run & eat strong again.

pasar taman tun sardon penang

Too late.. Opps, our plates are all clean.

 

Easy, Breezy, Pretty! : Mumtaz Sports Hijab

Mumtaz Sports Hijab is our new design. Simple yet it fits the needs of our fit sisters.
The model on featured image above is 168 cm tall, so if you are tall or seeking for wide chest covering , Mumtaz Sports Hijab is THE sports hijab for you.

Here’s a review by one of our customers on Mumtaz Sports Hijab

“Easy – Just slip on and go! 

The stretchy material gives the Mumtaz hijab a very comfortable fit, without need for an inner hair band. For sisters who worry about proper coverage, the Mumtaz drapes over the chest area nicely (I’m 162 cm tall with broad shoulders, mind you!), without getting in the way.

Breezy – So light and airy, I almost forgot I had it on the entire time! Fantastic breathable fabric made my run super comfortable from beginning to end.

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Closeup of Mumtaz Sports Fabric

Pretty – The classic shape and design make it possible to wear the Mumtaz hijab pre- and post-run anywhere and everywhere. The reflective Nashata logo at the back of the hijab adds a thoughtful, practical touch. The light grey colour makes it easy to pair the Mumtaz with my assorted collection of running tops.”

Mimi

Mimi in Mumtaz Hijab and Riada Top

Review is by Mimi Abdul Rashid
Mother, Runner & Entrepreneur.

 

We value our customers. That is why we spend a lot of time producing the right solutions for our customers. We’d love to hear from you. Just email customercare@nashata.com and share your thoughts.

Pushing Your Limits on International Women’s Day

Happy International Women’s Day to our readers.

Did you do anything special on Women’s Day? Many sisters spent their day making their marks, pushing themselves to a different level on the 8th March 2015.

Here are 3 highlights of our fit sisters:

1. Two WINNING Full Marathons within a week for Nur Nahsuhah

Nahsuhah, a 22 medical student at UNIMAS Sarawak, completed her virgin Full Marathon (42.195km) on the 1st March 2015 at the X12 Dark Run, Nexus Karambunai Resort & Spa, Kota Kinabalu, Sabah. She finished top 2 for Women’s Open Category at 4 hour and 54 minutes. Seven days after her first full marathon,  she competed at the Malaysia Women Marathon in Shah Alam, where she finished top 7 for Emerald Category. She improved her performance and finished within 4 hour and 49 minutes.

She flew into Shah Alam to brave through her second full marathons in a week! Isn’t that amazing!

Nur Nasuhah

Nur Nasuhah at X12 Dark Run & MWM 2015

2. Finishers at the Malaysia Women Marathon (MWM)

Full Marathon

10 sisters of Nashata, including Nahsuhah, Intan Suraya, Azlina, Arliza, Masnida and Azyan  ran Full Marathon at MWM. Some of them are amazing women who ran their virgin marathon. It was an amazing experience as the run not only brought them together, but also strengthen the sisterhood among themselves. It takes a strong and determined person to run a marathon.

“Running might not be an enjoyable past time for me if it was not for Nashata running clothes. Comfortable and modest, just what a running muslimah needs.”, Azlina Idris (Along) virgin full marathon runner

MWM Finisher

MWM Finishers

Finishers & Pacers

Whatever the distance and category it may be, 5km, 10km and 21km all finishers and pacers are Winners! There were family members who ran together, friends from old school, university and workplace who decided to catch up and ran together. Eat, Sleep and Exercise – A healthy arrangement for girl get-together. Some paced their family and friends, some ran for the fun, and some cheered for each other till the finishing line.

Whatever the reason may be, it was definitely for the betterment of one’s body and soul!

Run Modestly, Run in Nashata!

3. An upgrade from Full Marathon to Ultra for Eda

What is next for those who have graduated from Full Marathon numerous time?  Eda Fatimawati, Nashata’s Fitness Evangelist, who ran numerous full marathons ran her first ultra on Women’s Day! She ran and finished strong 50km at the TiTi100 Road Ultra Marathon.

Eda

Eda the Ultra Marathoner @ TITI100 Road Ultra Marathon

Our sisters have accomplished fitness to the next level on Women’s Day. CONGRATULATIONS!

Lastly, here’s a special pose by Intan Suraya when she ran full marathon at MWM!

intan mwm
Intan Suraya, Running Happy at the Malaysia Women Marathon 2015 #womensday

 

Be Inspired : Meet the Lady behind the World’s First Muslimah Run

The World’s First Muslimah Run will take place on the 9th February, 2014(Sunday) at Marina Barrage, Singapore. The 5km run will be participated by more than 600 muslimah, InsyaAllah.

We were privileged to speak to the lady behind the inaugural run, Capt. (Ret) Muzdalifah Anuar. She was busy getting POPWOW Team booth ready for the Race Pack Collection at Singapore Expo Hall 6B, but gracefully kind to share with us about the World’s First Muslimah Run that she planned for since 2012.

 

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Capt is the founder and coach at Women of Wellness, also known as  POPWOW. At POPWOW, Capt coaches other sisters the importance of fitness in Islam. Capt. started POPWOW in early 2013, after serving the military as an army officer for 13 years. A mother of three, her decision to start of POPWOW came about not long after she started wearing hijab.

In Singapore, where 15% of the population is muslim, hijab is not allowed in uniform-based profession like the army and nurse. The debate and petition about hijab at public-sector, uniform-based profession has been discussed a lot since November 2013. Whether or not hijab is problematic for some jobs, as for uniform based profession like nurse and army, in other countries like Malaysia, hijab has proven not to cause problem at work. There are many efforts to educate others about diversity and the beauty of the hijab, including the World Hijab Day. In Singapore, the World Hijab Day turned out to be controversial when the local ambassador and supporters receive resistance from the government and threats.

Like many other muslim women who chose to wear hijab for the love of Allah, it was an easy decision for Capt to choose between hijab and career. With her vast knowledge in fitness and wellness from her military days, helping other women to be FIT was the choice she made. To her, success is not just this life but also our after life. FITdunya & FITakhira… as how she says it.

Let’s understand more about the run as shared with us.

What motivated Capt to organise the first Muslimah run?

Capt runs full and half marathon. Prior to this, there were not many muslimah running marathons in her country. She wanted to have more muslimah friends to run with her. So, through running, she wanted to promote fitness in Islam to the other sisters and have more friends to run with.

When did the idea come about?

The idea about having the first muslimah run came about late 2012. Since then, she started talking to religious, governmental and political parties to get support and endorsement. After much discussion and plans, none falls through. So, in early December 2013 after initial supporters backed out, Capt was determined to organise the run on her own, as scheduled –  9 Feb 2014.

Who is the organiser for the event?

Capt was able to get support from other private entities that have common goals for muslim women – Fitness in Islam. The parties are Grundy and Yameen. Together, within two months, they organise and promote the run through various channels, that includes awareness at the madrasah, online channels and many other events. To Capt, her family and friends have played a pivotal role supporting her in making the run happen.

Who are the sponsors for WOWRUN?

Alhamdullillah, the run gets good support from private sectors.

Ummah is the Official Sports apparel retailer for the run, sponsoring the prizes for top 3 winners for all categories. Apart from that, Nashata is humbled to be the partial t-shirt sponsor for the run.

The biggest sponsor for the run is Aquila-style. It is a digital media on muslim fashion and pop culture.

How many people is Capt. targeting for the run?

Capt’s initial target was 800, but reduced to 500 when she had to organise the run on her own. Alhamdulillah, the tickets were sold out very fast within a month and captured 600 registration, beyond her target.

What is Capt’s aspiration for WOWRUN?

She wants to make WOWRUN an annual event in Singapore. She is also looking at running the same in Malaysia and Indonesia in 2014. Apart from that, she wants to make more avenues for muslim women to hold fitness activities together. She plans to do monthly clinic. Currently, she runs pilate and swimming coaching sessions at POPWOW.

What is next for POPWOW?

Capt plans to open up a Muslimah gymnasium in Singapore soon. InsyaAllah, with her strong will and determination, it will come through. Don’t you think? With the other muslimah run in other countries and muslimah gym planned out – Capt would surely have her hands FULL this year!

 

let’s

keep calm and run in hijab