DER PACEMAKER #31
The good doctor asked, "Are you feeling OK?". It was after measuring my pulse that the question was raised. Somehow I thought I had an inkling of what he was trying to say ..... my 'resting' heart rate was in excellent form, 48 beats/min. That was incredible and I was absolutely on cloud nine. I'm finally tasting the fruits of my labour!
Before the turn of the millennium, I had always disliked running. I could never tolerate the sweat profusion and the hard work of moving my feet in quick succession. The occasions I was forced to run were the 2.4km in school as part of the annual mandatory fitness test. Dreadful was the only description I had for this event.
Momentously, months after having my younger child, I decided one day that I ought to sweat out a bit. Just a wee bit. I was never fat, not even in my fully-bloomed pregnant stage. The raison d'etre was that I had inactive sweat glands as there were never hot days. I'm always cooped up in winter-cold conditions that scarves and wraps were part of my office gear. So there goes the proverbial one day, my hubby was trying to run at the park and I tagged along. The start was the bottom of the hill, and so to engage me, he gave me 2 lamp posts to run to. They were 50m apart .... that day's menu was 100m with the similar gradient of Lake Garden's Deer Park route.
Gradually and somehow, I began my once-a-week routine of 5.5km that took me 30mins to complete. Back then, I was running alone and had absolutely no inkling about speed and tempo. I just ran and also accompanied by my old faithful, the mini Sony radio. In fact, I was beginning to look forward to my once-a-week run to sweat out.
Two years later, we had to relocate to KL. One of the priorities was to live near a park that I did not have to drive to. The running frequency picked up as I had more time and with a good friend, we ran 10k about 3-4 times a week and gradually, I was introduced to a world of races. I clocked a respectable 56 mins in a chequered house-shorts and a Tee (don't think I'll ever wear that again) at my maiden KOTR. It was the Double Hill route and I was totally ignorant about hills. To me, it was 'just run' as long as there's a road.
The various locations of races have enhanced my territorial knowledge and have allowed me to know and mingle with so many friends here. The great camaraderie of the running fraternity is perhaps a rare spectacle dotted with various running clubs and running groups. Thanks to KC who has always been friendly and was kind enough to post my first article on an "All Women's" Race. Then came Choi, aka CCube, who invited me to his Saturdays LSDs. I had never done more than 10k prior to this. With his encouragement, LSDs became the norm. Within a year of LSDs, I ran my first Penang Full marathon. Elation was the only word to describe the end of that journey and was later gratified with 2 medals for the race. Progressively, got to know Ronnie, his super pia members and even more like-minded runners. I did not expect to be included in Ron's PM group as I felt I was a tad 'overage' to pia. Thanks to Ron, Kenny and Lai FS that I'm treated like an older sis (giving me handicap on runs, hehehe).
This year, I completed my second Full and managed to shave off 15 minutes. The third Full is looming at the corner of November and the training will be coming on full blast soon. Special mention to Jamie .... we are the LSD partners-in-training.
I'm always amazed by the ordinarily fast runners who almost, in my opinion, sail through effortlessly. Whilst running with the PM's can be challenging for this 40-something runner, I am easily satiated with a good hard run and nothing more. I must say that the one who gets my eyeballs is Haza. Kudos to her dauntless spirit in good and bad running days.
Till then, I wish you good running health and the many smiles to come.