Saturday, March 31, 2007

MacRitchie after 3 months

Its been 3 months since I did the MR25 Ultramarathon at MR. Went down for a 21km (Carpark -> Northern Trail -> SICC -> UPR -> AirCond Road -> U-Turn at OUTR Main Gate -> UPR -> AirCond Road -> SICC -> Northern Trail -> Carpark). The carpark at MR was expanded and there were lots of parking slots available. The entrance carpark to the left was closed for upgrading. Met tBee, Ronnie, Piglet and the whole tigger family warming up for their regular Sat run. Run3 and taz were there for some ninja trail training too. Fennel, DO, Cheow12 and I started at 7:08am in what was very clear weather.

Because of my runny nose and sore throat, I decided to do an easy pace. Came out of Northern Trail with the group in 22min...hmm, havent't ran trails for some time, and could feel my ankles a little wobbly.....good thing I had on my Nike Vomero, which offered ample cushioning such that I don;t feel the rocky surface. Tackled the chunky slopes along SICC before proceeding to cross the bridge towards UPR. It was a pretty humid and sunny morning, and the aircond breeze was most welcomed along the stretch. Ronnie and Tigger were running out as we approached the power station. I was glad I had my fuel belt as my throat and mouth were feeling dry from the medication. We turned left towards UPR and manouvred the 2.5 slopes pretty smoothly. Cheow12 and DO were just behind, and enjoying themselves.

Did a U-turn at the Main Gate, and ran back the reverse 2.5 slopes, and onto AirCond Road for the second loop. We wanted to avoid the messy Sime Trail and the landslide area near the Ranger station, so did the AirCond Rd again to make up. On the way in AirCond, saw Ronnie coming out already. On the way out, saw Bug (who was late for 30min) come in....good that he caught up quite a fair bit. We did a water stop at the UPR toilet area, before running back along the rolling slopes of SICC. Other than for the blocked nose which made my breathing a little difficult, I was otherwise feeling ok. The final 4km stretch of Northern Trail in reverse was by then (8.30am) rather crowded with trekkers and students. It made a nice obstacle course as it required some deft footwork to manouvre those many people. Some of the slopes, especially the steeper ones, did not make it any easier.

Was glad to complete the 21km in less than 2hr, as the sun was by then beating down fiercely. Fennel who went the wrong way, had finished just earlier. She liked this MR route a lot, and vowed to be back for more. Cheow12 and DO soon came back, and Bug came back in another 20min. Spotted Commando doing his intensive training....its been some time since we ran with him :). Was glad to bump into stazla and her friend, plus Burnz who ran with tigger's group. I enjoyed the nice catching-up and chit-chatting, before breaking off for my next appointment. I should be starting to do more runs at MR...just wish that there would be better wash-up facilities soon.

Distance: 21km XC__Time: 1hr56min__Pace: 5:31min/km

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