Tuesday, January 25, 2011

FTAAA X-Country Run 2011

Venue: Padang Merbuk, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Distance: 6.2km (Garmin: 7.78km)

Timing: 56:18 minutes or 7:13 min/km pace

This was nearly a non starter/DNS for me given my iffy left foot. I did not intend to and did not race this run. Heck, I wanted to walk the entire journey and to be sure, I put myself right at the end of the pack. The foot held up well during the first 1-1.5km…while we were still on the road. The next portion was the trails at Padang Merbuk/Parliament and this was a huge portion, probably another km. The total of swearing/cussing per step must have hit a record high at this portion – it was totally un-run-able, muddy, slippery and whatnot. [insert royally pissed mood here] Garmin showed I took 14 minutes for this km. I walked where I could and waited for the next person to come around to help me get down the slopes where I could not. I was not going risk limb and life for this run and definitely not for a can of Milo!

After this it was a run across the street to Carcosa – I looked at the marshal manning the intersection and he indicated “go ahead”. Now if you are a regular around these routes, you know that running through Carcosa and Lake Gardens to Padang Merbuk (end point), it will most certainly be more than 2km and the Garmin had just “Ping!” 4. [insert royally pissed mood here as well]

Lake Gardens, Deer Par, Bird Park were another mess, at least for me – field slopes, stairs etc [insert royally pissed mood here as well] Again I walked the down fields to be doubly sure my foot doesn’

Result: 14th placing in the Women’s Open (I was expecting 20th given my “strolls”)


a) Low registration fee of RM20.

b) More than advertised one water station – that is probably because the route was longer!

c) On the dot timing for the start.


a) Distance. Enough said. No wait, there’s something else in a similar fashion – the 1-hour time limit. 6km in 1 hour – totally do-able. 8km in 1 hour – a stretch for the average runner, even on roads.

b) Limited finishers’ medal – think it was 30 or was it 50? It’s pretty sad to have to go through one “hellavu” adventure with nothing to show.

c) Trails and mud fest. Yes, they did say it was a cross country event but they also said it was on fields and foot paths.

d) No road closure and ugly Malaysian motorists (what else is new, right?). Golly there were even some who blares their horns in front of the traffic police officer! Let us not even get close to the Nissan Grand Livinia that wanted to crown me road kill at the junction to Lake Club/children’s playground…in front of an officer of the Royal Malaysian Police Force. I never knew I was that delectable!

I had better stop here before any trail running buddies of mine come after me.

Lessons learnt:

• stick to road running; New Balance Real run does not count – it was run-able standing/in an upright position even though your feet continues to sink into the sand

• run the Terry Fox Run in ECP when it is an alternative, or any other race for that matter!

I took today off running as well hoping (fervently) that the additional rest day will help the foot. Please say a prayer for me. All morning I was thinking about Kenny and the miracles of his prayer. He called just a while ago and asked if I wanted to run on Thursday morning! Fingers crossed and by the power of Him, I will be able to make it a pain-free, fast and strong run.

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