Sunday, July 23, 2006

Mizuno 10K

Last night I carbo-loaded on a double order of Hainanese Chicken Rice, which is a local specialty here in Singapore. For good measure, I topped it off with a sampling of durian, an incredibly popular fruit here available only in the summer months, but also one that comes with a pretty strong odor - overwhelmingly pungent to some, odorless to others. Go figure. Nevertheless, chicken rice and durian ... not your everyday pre-race meal.

This morning was humid as usual, but the sun remained hidden behind a high cloud cover. At 7:00 am, I arrived at the Kovan MRT Station, one of the stops along the North East subway line. Outside, about a thousand or more people were already milling about. A quick stretch, and even quicker warmup, and I was ready to go. I took a GU and went to the water station for water, but they weren't giving out any. Free watermelon slices though, so I took one. GU and watermelon juice. That's a new one too. I hoped it wasn't some unknown no-no combination.

About 7:20 am, everyone started to gather under an inflatable arch start line in the parking lot. The race was scheduled to begin at 7:30 am. It seemed early, but without even an announcement, the air horn sounded and we were off. There was a sharp hairpin turn up an incline to get out of the parking lot, which quickly became a bottleneck 20 seconds into the race. Several of us jumped a low metal fence to bypass the turn. About a quarter mile later, we spilled out onto a main road, on which most of the out and back race was run.

A run's a run, and halfway around the world, I tried to fall into my pace. I was aiming for a marathon race pace of 9:09/mile, which was on my training schedule for today. One thing I did notice is that most of the runners were pretty disciplined runners. Unlike most of my other races, I did not have to contend with walkers and other out-of-gas jackrabbits in the early stages of the race. Most of the runners were local Singaporeans, with a sprinkling of Europeans, Aussies, and maybe Americans (hard to tell unless they start talking ... grunting, wheezing, and hard breathing doesn't reveal much!).

I made the turn at 25:30, and brought it home in 53:49. About a minute faster than planned, and since I don't run that many 10Ks, this is also a PR for me! After the race, I picked up the goodie bag with a really nice Mizuno short sleeved tech shirt ... a fantastic value since the race fee was only Sing$15. That's about US$9.50! This race fit perfectly with my training plan, and I got a good training shirt to go with it. Not too shabby for a morning's work.

9 comments:

susie said...

Woo hoo! Way to go:) And a great shirt to boot. What could be better?

Anne said...

Glad everything, including the schwag, fit perfectly for you. Nice work on the PR from halfway around the world.

Jack said...

Great job with the race, totally incredible racing halfway around the world!

Running Rabbit said...

Yeah! A PR!! Great job!

Josh said...

Great job! and Congrats on the PR (and an international one at that!)

Jennifer said...

sounds like a great time! How fun!

Black Knight said...

Congrats for the race. I see in the picture a "strange" shape, don't I?

Yvonne said...

excellent work! congrats on your exotic PR!

Thomas said...

I vividly remember the durian from my time in London. They sold them all across Chinatown, and it was very popular with parts of the population. The smell could get so bad that some shops banned people from entering when you were carrying one around.