Sunday, May 06, 2007

MR25 Progressive Run 2007

The MR25 Progressive Runs this year will take the form of a series, with runners doing at least 4 events, and scoring points to get freebies and prizes to the top 5 runners. Quite an interesting format, and should be good for regular runners who participate in the MR25 progressive runs, Marathon and Ultra-Marathon.

I got down to MR at 6.45am for my first progressive run (20km) of the year. It had been some time since I ran at MacRitchie, and this morning promised to be one of fine weather and dry grounds. Met many familiar faces at MR, a number of SgRunners doing this run for the first time…Brokie, Vincent, SealBoon, Kayano, half-timer, kellylim….and then the regulars like Ultraman, DO, TLR, Alvo, Meteor, Gentle, Bug, myself….along with friends from MR25. Goola and Sok Hwa were spotted doing their ninja run to Bukit Timah….such dedication lah…

MR25 Vincent gave a brief of the new route (because of the landslide near the Ranger Station, we would skip that path back; instead doing twice air-cond road, and finishing by the Northern Route), and started us off at 7am sharp. I took it leisurely for a start, with the rest of the speedsters having zoomed by. I was a little surprised to see some of the faster runners along with me…hmm, good….it seemed that at least some wanted to do a steady-paced run. I exited Northern Route in 20min…ok, quite normal. Went on up chunky hill, and was trading places with 2 young chaps (looked like schoolboys to me)….they was fast on the downslopes, but was a little weak on the upslopes.

Went into air-cond road, and saw the front-runners, Eric Wu, etc zooming out…as I neared the pump-house, saw Bug, TLR, Ultra all running strongly. Knowing there were many slopes ahead, I conserved my energy by maintaining about a 5:15min/km pace. Turned around at the pump house, and saw DO, SealBoon, and soon Brokie and hubby Vincent running in as a team…nice. Out onto UPR road, I was overtaken by the young runners…they were strong on such stretches…, I ran along the longer left side to follow them. Reached the main gate to OUTR at 50min….took 2 cups of drink, and paused for a breather. JJ came along with her running partner, and for me, it was all the way back up 2 slopes and into air-cond road for a second time. On the way out, JJ overtook me, and I decided to just trail her from a distance.

Compared with last year, I felt better this time round…maybe I was not pushing too hard, and was just enjoying the pace. As we approached the bridge back to MR from UPR, the sun was up and shining brightly. There were not much shade…but I didn’t let it get to me. I maintained a steady pace and overtook a few runners. All the way back along chunky hill, the slopes got tougher and energy reserves were running low. Took a drink of 100plus at the final water point, and I was ready to finish off the remaining 4km of Northern Route. Knowing that there were quite a few slopes near the end of the Northern Route, I conserved and steadied myself to finish in 1hr45min…felt good after the run, and was not too drained.

We gathered and cheered for the rest coming back, while having sips of Brokie’s barley and 100plus in between. Bug and TLR did very well, and the few Golden Boys did respectably good. Brokie, Gentle and Vincent came back together below 2hr…well done. SealBoon, half-timer and kellylim all completed their first progressive run in style. While my timing was not that great, and was slightly off last year’s, I did enjoy this run more…maybe because I took it quite easy, and was not even having any slight ache at all. The gang went to Adam Road for famous prawn noodle and nasi lemak. Ron Sim of Osim fame (who was there with his family for makan) triggered a conversation amongst ourselves of the nice pampering products like iSqueeze, uZap, uPapa…haha…life does not get better than that yah? Hmm…

Distance: 20km XC__Time: 1hr45min__Pace: 5:15min/km


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