This week has been rather hectic for me at work and at home, especially since our new house renovation is almost completed now and there are just so many things to look into. It didn't help knowing that I needed to increase the training mileage and complete a 30k long run.
Surprisingly enough though I managed to get through the weekdays covering a total of 36km in four runs of 10k, 8k, 13k and 5k. I didn't really give much thought to the 30k run that was awaiting me on Sunday and was just hoping that I would be able to cover the distance without too much trouble at a comfortable and easy pace.
Peter didn't make it this morning, so I was running with Lee and Mani. We started at 5.05am and I was carrying my half full 600ml water bottle. At almost the 10k mark, Martin was waiting for us at the UITM hostel as planned. I proceeded to refill my bottle from the water pipe there and we continued.
The conversation with the guys and the easy pace we were running at made the run very enjoyable. The weather was excellent and cooling as well since it had rained the previous night. Our split time at the 10k mark was about 67mins and my body was feeling very relaxed.
The next 10k passing the Istana, Bukit Cahaya turnoff, Concorde hotel, PKNS and finally back to the UITM roundabout was again covered very comfortably with lots of conversation. Our split time at the 20k mark was 2h15m. Once again I proceeded to refill my bottle at the UITM tap and consumed the powergel that I had brought along. We waited there for a few minutes for Lee to catch up, said goodbye to Martin and continued on.
My legs and form were still feeling great and I kept thinking how long it would last. I hadn't run anything more than 21k since last year's KLIM and it has just been 8 weeks since I resumed training after a 5 month lapse which saw a drastic form drop and increase in weight. I concentrated on my running form as much as possible and kept my posture upright as recommended in order to increase running efficiency.
Just 5k more to go! Form still looking good, the powergel had kicked in and there was no sign of any muscle or mental fatigue. Watch showed a split of 2h50m. I continued to pace with Mani as Lee had slowed down and was left behind. It must be his post GE30k fatigue. Salute to him for running another 30k back to back!
The sun was up by now and I was enjoying the warmth it was giving. Simply maintained my pace and concentrated on my running form. With just one more kilometer to go and with no signs of fatigue or muscle tightness, we finally arrived back at the stadium with a total running time of 3h23m including the few minutes of pit stops we had made along the way.
At that point, I felt that there was still plenty of zip left in my legs. Overall condition was still very relaxed with absoultely no signs of muscle tightness. I could have continued running for another few kilometers but that's best left for the next long run. I estimate an average pace of about 6m40s per kilometer, and I'm certain the even pacing played a big part in helping me maintain my form througout the run.
Things that worked for me over the last 8 weeks:-
1. My 2 gym workouts a week have helped increase my LT levels tremendously and overall conditioned my body, helping prevent injury as I increase the mileage and training intensity.
2. Having one medium distance run mid week
3. Keeping most runs at base pace i.e. 6m18s per km with one tempo or speed workout a week
4. Endurox R4 is simply an amazing sports recovery drink that I couldn't do without
5. Discipline, discipline, discipline!
Things that worked in today's long run:-
1. Having a simple breakfast of two sliced of Gardenia toast em with one slice of cheese and one can of Ali Cafe! (Hehe)
2. Cool weather as it rained the night before
3. Great pacers and good conversation
4. Even pacing, simply one of the most important things for me. Helps preserve glycogen stores!
5. NB 1061 even at the end of its lifespan was simply great! Immaculate cushioning. Too bad I could not get another pair at Albert's shop as they are out of size and waiting for the 1062 to hit stores in March. Perhaps I must try other NB outlets. The 756 I picked up is not as smooth and is a little rigid. I hope it gets better as I break it in.
6. New NB coolmax imported socks, comes with special left and right sock. Simply cannot feel the sweat while running, but after the run if you squeeze the socks it will result in a pool of water at your feet! Cinya unbelievable! Simply must try, only RM20 per pair at NB outlet.
7. Carrying my own water bottle (half full) and being able to sip whenever I wanted. The UITM tap is at a very convenient location (9km, 21km)
8. Pinning the power gel to my shorts. Yes I succeeded and it was unbelievably comfortable. Did not feel its presence at all throughout the run.
So now, with all this you might be asking what my target is for KLIM? Well to be honest I don't have a target apart from wanting to RUN the full distance without walking! Can I do it?? I don't know! Now with 8 more weeks to go, I just hope that injury stays away and I keep up my good form and be able to peak just as the event draws near. One thing I have learnt is that pacing and patience is key to running a good race! So guys and gals out there, know your pace and your form on race day and stick to it and you will be surprised at what you can achieve.