OSIM Sundown Marathon Singapore - Sleep Can Wait

Discussion in 'Front Page News' started by Jaqa, Mar 26, 2017.

  1. Jaqa

    Jaqa Barefooters

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    OSIM Sundown Marathon Singapore - Sleep Can Wait
    BY Jaqa


    It is not often you see a marathon with a starting time of 00:00. Yes, that's midnight! The Sundown Marathon is the second biggest marathon in Singapore with 30000 runners spread over 42, 21, 10 and 5km kiddies race. the 10 and 5 km are run in the evening and the full starts at midnight and the half at 01:00.

    The big advantage is avoiding the sun, and the heat, which is very theoretical here as it still means 26 Celsius and 85%+ humidity. But if you are used to Singapore running, that's very pleasant!

    Saturday was mostly spend in a slight state of stress, wondering about what to eat, getting a good nap in, not feeling too tired, and the all-important output question as going to the public loo's in the early hours of Sunday is pretty daunting to say the least.

    The hours crawled by and finally I could hail a taxi and get to the start, which was pretty chaotic with hordes of 10km runners just finishing and spilling over the night festival arena made very muddy by a 2 hour storm in the afternoon. Luckily us barefooters can walk anywhere so got to the the starting pens and met up with the other runners in my running group for a quick photo.

    After some inane announcer chat and a 15 minute delay, the race got underway. I was going for 4:15 time, and even if I told myself to settle quickly into a comfortable rhythm, I had to do lots of dodging and weaving the first few km's as there were quite a few bottlenecks. With the crowded conditions, watching my steps were important as it was wet underfoot and in the dark it was difficult to see if it was going to be slippery or not.

    By 5km the run had spread out enough to become comfortable. I had set myself splits for where I should be, giving some cushion for a bonk, or walk, but at 10km realised that I was feeling good, my times were OK, and started wondering if I could go under 4 hours, which was a goal I had set for the mid-year. Only one way to find out, and that was to go for it, and hope for the best!

    I trying to keep my pulse at 145-151 and pace at 5:30/km and basically was clock watching from 10km, scrolling through my pace, km's, cadence every few minutes. We had a 20km out-and-back loop through East Coast Park starting from 15km. I hate the ECP as it is dead flat and straight, boring as hell, but does take advantage of cool sea breezes. At night it is very dark too, and with few spectators, it became a very internal metal run. I knew if I came out the other side at 35km strong I could make the sub 4, so drank quickly at water stops, kept a very disciplined pace and was constantly evaluating myself and the race.

    The race crew and spectators were pretty surprised to see a grim, determined barefoot runner stumbling out of the dark into the pools of light and offered some encouraging shouts of "jiā yóu!" (add oil).

    I got out of the ECP and knew I had very few minutes of cushion time and had to push hard. Time really seemed to stand still and the km's crept slowly past. At 39km I knew I was going to make it baring any accidents and just hung in there. A very encouraging runner kept me company the last km, excited to be with a barefoot runner, and we did a great sprint for the finishing line, finishing in 3:53. Super stoked as my last marathon was 4:27, and this was my first marathon that felt like I was racing and not just surviving!

    Then it was a small matter of collecting my bag and joining my friends who did the half marathon for a unique experience of having a beer, or three, at 5 o'clock.

    IMG-20170326-WA0026[1].jpg

    (I will post race pictures if they come available)
     
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  2. Tedlet

    Tedlet Barefooters
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    Congrats J! Impressive...
    That looks like a well earned beer.
     
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  3. Barefoot TJ

    Barefoot TJ Administrator
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    I know what you mean by inane announcer. It's like, "Get on with it already!"

    I have mirrored your report to the home page. Thanks for sharing!
     
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  4. dutchie53

    dutchie53 Barefooters
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    Wow, awesome race. Congrats with your finishing time.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
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  5. Jaqa

    Jaqa Barefooters

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    Thank you for the kind comments! Much appreciated!

    I just want to add that this race was one of the most disorganized races I have been part of. The race pack collection was disastrous. I arrived just as it opened on Tuesday and had to wait for 2 hours in both blazing hot sun and then a pouring thunder storm to collect my race vest, racebib and timing chip and a very disappointing goodie bag. It was universally panned on social media. Many runners managed to get only bits of the above and had to do additional cross checking and more collections to get their things together for the day.

    During the race the elite runners were accidentally diverted at the 2km mark and then turned back so they ran an extra 1.3km. The cursing from them as they had to force their way through the bulk of the runners was something to behold. Way too many bottlenecks for the first few km's too. At 35km, the full marathon runners were combined with the half marathon runners and I had to make my way through walkers chatting, playing Pokemon (!!!) and CandiCrush, and generally holding things up. Where we diverted again at 38km, some full marathon runners were not diverted so ran less than a full marathon. And to top it off the official timing results are a mess as for many of us it is telling us that we did not run or giving someone else's name for our bib numbers. Still trying to get my official time! Definitely not something we are used to here in Singapore, especially for the second biggest marathon celebrating its 10th year.

    On a more positive note, I have been following a training regime based on an excellent book, Training Essentials for UltraRunning by Jason Koop. Despite only being 3 months in on a 6 month program, my speed has picked up 12% across all distances and I have more endurance capability than I used to have. If I had to base a marathon time on Yasso's 800's now, I would have gotten a 3:05! (I know it is more of a correlation than causation!) Also, nigglly injuries are much less now.

    Book review here https://www.thebarefootrunners.org/...entials-for-ultrarunning-by-jason-koop.20331/
     
    #5 Jaqa, Mar 27, 2017
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2017
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  6. Bodhi

    Bodhi Barefooters
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    Congrats and Cheers (last Picture) :)
     
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  7. Chris C

    Chris C Barefooters

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    Great recap and congratulations! People walking and playing mobile phone games during a marathon? Thats insane IMO. I guess to each their own, but I still think that's nuts.

    But great for you!
    Chris
     
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