Friday, March 2, 2012

U-Run 2012 – 10km

Date: 26 February 2012
Venue: The Float, Marina Bay, Singapore
Distance: 10km (Garmin: 9.95km)
Timing: 50:11 (Gun); 49:59 (Chip); 50:00 (Garmin)
Pace: 5:01 min/km (Garmin)
Result: 8th (Women Open) (all results here)^
^ odd that the list gives out bib numbers. Check back in a few days...hopefully the organizers would have updated the list and I'll do the same here.
Last year’s recap here.

The morning didn’t start off too well. First, I knocked my knee against the doorpost and even 3 days, it was hurting. Bad. I switched off the power supply to the netbook (while it was still running) instead of the lights.

This was a loop with an out-and-back course from The Float with 2 u-turns along both ends of Nicoll Highway. The race came with 2 options: OMB Challenge (10km + 30 storey climb) and U-Run (10km) and was organized /sponsored by NTUC; believe union members and families had fee discounts and/or separate prize/podium finishing (?). I opted for the second option (no prizes for guessing; in case you're new to the blog, I DON'T stair climb. Ever.) and even in this category, there were about 2,000 runners (heard from emcee) and we started at 8:15 am. The OMB Challenge started earlier (7am; in 12 waves - yes, that many runners) to ease the congestion both on the route and stairway.

Extremely crowded since the path was narrow and it was to be shared with the incoming OMB runners. In way, I was glad for this because it meant not going too fast and blowing up. You run along a part of the F1 track heading towards Republic Avenue.

Straight stretch along Nicoll Highway with the u-turn just after the half way mark. I spotted Anne Date/Qi Hui on the other side when I was at km4 (km6 for her). The rollers were along this portion of the race. Nothing dramatic like those in KL but there were a few of them and the mid span of the highway had a long incline. I’m not too sure which is worse – long steady or short steep ones because I like to race up (if at all possible…and it’s probably only in the my mind) the hills just to get them out of the way.

Nicoll Highway to Republic Avenue, heading back to the start/finishing.

The late start + 34 degree temp + zero shade + burning F1 tracks = heart racing + almost dizzy-like + Zone 5 heart rate. I tried putting in a few walk breaks here (hence the awful splits) but I still ended up collapsing at the finishing. ThisClose to blacking out; I shut my eyes, opened them and the world is spinning, I’m spinning. I kid you not. My temp at the finishing was around 39 degrees and the medics practically threw a pail of ice on me. Brrrrrr!

Teck Hooi found and posted this on Pacemakers' FB page. Yes, the dying look at the end.

Many thanks to the various photographers out there on Sunday.

a) Well organized.

b) Plenty of hydration stations (every 2km) stocked with both water and Pocari Sweat although I couldn’t find it at the start (found out later that it was at the Pocari Sweat booth. Bah!).

c) Wave start to minimize congestion and except for the first 500m or so, we had the entire route to run as we please.

d) FULL road closure.

e) Useful goodie bag – something practical and you could use - shoe bag (I’ve way too many recycleable bags that they’ve been handing out) and a small towel.

f) Distance markers every km – they were a bit later (e.g. 20m) after my Garmin beeped but generally on track. I don't normally make an issue on distance since it's difficult to run tangents in a race.

g) Race carnival at the end – in the shade/under the building/grandstand.

a) Late start of the U-Run but I guess there wasn’t really any choice if they wanted to ease the congestion.

b) Long wait for bag collection; I didn’t do (and normally don’t do one) a bag check but I’ve heard of friends queuing up to an hour to an hour and a half to retrieve their bag.

c) Sizing for the event vest seems a tad on the small side. I opted for an “M” (thought I could pass it along to my sis or couz or friends) but the vest looks and feels like an “S”.

d) There were some talk about the finishing medal – quality and design. I’m typically indifferent about medals, so no comment.

e) “Late-ish” posting of the results (4 days after event) – this could also be due to us getting used to seeing our results in the evening of the run or within 24 hours perhaps? Too pampered?

Photo log:

Event vest and race booklet handed out during race pack collection

Goodie bag at the end of the race (OMB Challenge gets a finisher’s tee in addition to this)

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