Before I ran this morning I was in doubt whether I should run hard or easy today. I didn't want to strain myself and risk being not so fresh in Bidor. However since Lee was running with me today and he would be a good pacer, I just decided to run a fast first half and then try to maintain a good pace in the return leg.
As soon as we started I knew I was running quite fast... perhaps too fast but I just continued. Even Lee commented that this was really a fast pace. I slowed down a little after Jalan Duta and picked up the pace again in the last stretch after Plaza Damas. Overall time from Bukit Aman to Petronas was 52m55s.
We just quickly drank some water from the pipe there and started the return journey to Bukit Aman. Here I slowed down quite a bit initially and even Geraldine overtook me after Jalan Duta and said that I was too slow. Lee was running ahead and then making loops back towards me from time to time.
I just decided to keep Geraldine in site and picked up the pace a little towards the end. When I reached Jalan Parlimen I could still see her in front. I knew that my body was much stronger as I could still push up this stretch without much of a struggle. Split time from Petronas to Bukit Aman was 59m52s. Overall timing 1h52m47s.
I had stopped my watch at Petronas so I don't know how long we stopped there but it was a very brief stop since we just grabbed water from the pipe. If I take that into account and add perhaps another 6 minutes for another 1k, a sub 2 timing for a 21k would still be rather borderline. So Jamie is right, running a sub 2 half marathon is really not easy.
On a positive note, I can feel my body getting stronger. I need to just strengthen my mental state so that I can maintain a faster pace in the second half of the race. My pace today for the second half was too slow. Things that worked today were...
1. 6 hours of sleep
2. Powerbar and Ali Cafe
3. Nike Pegasus (I am really loving this pair of shoes more and more!)
4. Thorlos Level 3 (Socks were soaked after 10k but it absolutely prevents any painful blistering)
Well there is no point in trying anything else now as the race is just a week away. The best I can do now is to make sure I keep the body warm and fit with some short quick runs over the next 5 days while getting as much sleep and proper nutrition. A fully rested body is the best weapon on race day after a hard couple of months in preparation!