Thanks for the memories.
Pardon the ugly watermark on the photos, I didn’t feel compelled to buy the photos for S$34.90!
I officially completed my first marathon on Sunday, 28 June 2009. It was the Standard Chartered KL Marathon, and me and Erfen had trained for 4 months for it. I was actually quite nervous before the race as I had not been training for 2 weeks before the event due to work, but somehow, someway, we managed to do the entire 42.195km in 5 hours and 50 minutes. It’s not excellent timing of course, but i had set my target to be under 6 hours, since it’s my first marathon, so I am satisfied with the result!
The race statistics say that I am the 165 position for the women’s full marathon category. Not too shabby for a first-timer, I think 😛 Although, the winner of the women’s full marathon did it in 2 hours 40 minutes! And the men’s winner completed it in 2 hours 17 minutes, despited the fact that it was his first marathon! Craziness!!
I would say that though the idea of running 42.195km seems pretty impossible and daunting at first, I think anyone can do it, given proper training beforehand. Before the marathon itself the furthest I’d ever run was 24km! But luckily me and Erfen followed a running schedule, having proper training really helps.
[warning: running advocacy alert!]
Plus, besides just running you can train in other ways too, like doing circuit training, interval trainings, gym sessions and even swimming and cycling for cross-training. Running is an excellent way of keeping fit! Trust me on this, I eat a lot and exercising is the only way that I don’t weigh a ton now.
Running a marathon also challenges you to be strong both mentally and physically, as you are ultimately racing against yourself. Of course, there were times when it was difficult.
While training, sometimes I’d feel lazy to go for a run, or I’d want to walk halfway through my run, but sometimes I just told myself “You can do it” or visualise myself running past the next lamppost, and the next, and the next, and before I’d known it, I’d have finished my run.
Plus, it’s nice to run with a partner as well. During the marathon me and Erfen listened to music via his phone, and we made sure to load songs we both liked.
When the song “Irreplaceable” by Beyonce started playing, we both instinctively started doing the hand actions for the “To the left, to the left” and then we got carried away and did actions for the whole song. I bet we were one of the few runners who were still laughing and joking while running! It was really a pleasant experience for me and it was a great feeling crossing the finishing line together. It would have been very different had I run alone.
Also, it’s a great excuse to travel! We decided on going for the KL Marathon because it was a chance for us to get out of Singapore and do something different. It was quite a cool way of exploring the city, plus we had time to do some sightseeing/shopping before we left for Singapore. I think many cities have marathons as well, such as the Vienna Marathon (gonna do that one day!) or the Boston Marathon (one of the world’s oldest annual marathons, although I’d need a timing of at least 3 hours and 40 minutes to qualify!)
Next stop, Safra Bay Run and Army Half Marathon in August, and the Singapore Standard Chartered in December. Pretty exciting stuff! I’m hoping to improve my timing to 5 hours next…fingers crossed!
I read this letter in the forum pages today, commenting on a recent article (Pack them in, build them up – March 27 2009) in which a certain Professor Edward Glaeser extolled the benefits in Singapore having a 6.5 million population. I was similarly alarmed. With more crowded trains, buses, shopping centres (with Tampines starting to look like the new Orchard), with more and more land development transforming previously empty spaces into brand spanking new condos and office buildings, with more heritage areas being torn down, spiffed up, renamed and otherwise obliterated, I really wonder what Singapore would look like if it got even more crowded. He may be an academic but his arguments, while being sound academically, just make me balk.
His idea of a perfect candidate to boost our population rate?
My model of a skilled worker is that 42-year-old biotechnology worker who has a husband and two kids and is trying to live a decent life.
On how having a dense city would help the environment?
Crowding more people on less land is fundamentally good for the environment. Partly because people have lower transportation costs, live in smaller homes, and use less energy.
On our street life?
There’s a huge amount of pedestrian traffic but it’s indoors. It’s all in the air- conditioned malls, which is really where the street life is. That means connections between those malls are actually what city planning needs.
Read the article and tell me what you think? I just feel sad at the thought of a Singapore supplemented by an army of biotech workers, living in high-rise buildings that simply get higher and higher as if trying to make an escape, and preferring to walk in underground air-conditioned walkways. (Brings a whole new meaning to ‘rat race’?)
As it is I see the working crowd at Raffles City in the mornings and think ‘Dawn of the Dead’. TOC calls it, the Sardine City. Is it no wonder Ethan Hawke lamented in not having seen Singaporeans really living?
Is it just me or is it harder to find time to blog when you’re working?
Work’s been good..I’m kept busy everyday, which I maintain is much better than having nothing to do. It’s been almost a month already. Which means I’m a third into my internship, and that I should probably go talk to my boss and ask him what I’ve been doing. According to this book I’ve been reading, you should always continually ask for feedback, and treat all feedback as a mechanism to let you know how far off your target you are, adjust your behaviour accordingly, and hopefully it brings you to your intended objectives at the end of it all.
And just for kicks, here are the things I’d like to get out of this internship by August 29 2008:
1) To know whether I like doing PR
2) To seek out opportunities to be more creative in my responsibilities
3) For my work to be respected by my superiors and peers
4) To improve on my work ethic and be more accountable for my work
5) To build lasting relationships with the people around me
6) To be unforgettable.
She took two steps forward, not without fear. It was the loneliest time of the day, that period between hustle and before bustle, when the air was thick and people with their glazed eyes looked without really seeing. She held a balloon in her palm. It was red like the gelatin candies of her youth, a red that was one shade brighter than blood. It gave her a tiny bit of happiness to hold this happy, bouncing thing in her hand. She let the happy, bouncing thing go and watched as it danced further away, and went to partake in a secret happiness she could only guess at. She watched till it disappeared, and then she did too.
Pardon me, I’m in the mood for Queen today.
marching to drumbeats
that follow no stoccato —
she feels nothing