This would probably be one of the most hard-earned medal I have crazily earned.
I signed up for the Sundown 21km run end of last year, when I was still in good shape and had a passion for running. Fast-forward five months and it was a different story. I had lose my motivation to run and the last time I wore my running shoes was for the Compression Run in April. So it was pretty close to suicidal going for a 21km run with almost no training at all. But I told myself to just go and have fun, take it as a leisure jog. Or walk.
Surprisingly I enjoyed the run, well at least the first 15km of it. Running in a large event with so many other runners makes the event fun and enjoyable. And I was able to draw strengths from other runners. I lasted till the 15km mark before I finally walked instead of jog.
At 16 km, the soreness and pain on different parts of my legs were there, yet bearable. But another form of distraction hit me. I was hungry, really hungry. Every time I pass by a volunteer of the event, I wished they were holding out a banana to give to me.
Determine to finish the race so I can have supper (I was trying to turn hungry into my strength), I did a mixture of slow job and fast walk. Then at 18km mark, the tightness on my thighs threatened to give me cramps. I had to do more stretching along the way and walk more to prevent the cramps from coming up.
Having looked at the timing on my watch, it seems like I could still do it under 3 hours if I hasten my pace a little. With a focus aim in mind, I started to pick up my pace again. Then at 20km mark, the thighs gave up, tightening up so much that I couldn’t jog anymore. Even fast walking proved to be a teeth grinding affair. That was it, I could only hobble on towards the finish line.
As I approach the last 300m to the finish line, it seems like under 3 hours is still possible. The competitive mind then took over and pushed the wasted legs on towards the end. And I did it under 3 hours.
I’m gonna hang up my shoes and take a break from running, a break of at least two years.