My last long run was the 35km I did about three weeks ago. It took me 4 hours to complete the distance, and had caused me to walk in great pain at the knees for couple of days. Going down a staircase was a thing I hated the most in that situation. I then started to take some supplements with the hope that my knee joints won’t suffer that much for the 42km distance I’ll be running in two freaking weeks time from now.
The next weekend after that, I was busy with JB City Eco Challenge. Hence, no long distance running at all. The legs were having a holiday on their own.
Another weekend after that (the Xterra weekend), I did 2 hours run for which I thought as a start of my slowing down, i.e. tapering. Rough guess would say I ran 18km. At once, I felt easy and not having any knee pain, and the breathing was surprisingly calm and smooth all the way. I even thought that if it was not for the empty and growling tummy I had after 1.5 hours of running, I could still go on for another hour or so and not stop running at 2 hours. But it was OK. 2 hours should be good for my tapering, so I thought.
So, last Friday I sms-ed Kash to ask her for the Saturday’s LSD menu. She said 28km - start at same place, same time. ”Gulp! 28km?”. I felt a bit uneasy with the planned distance, because mainly I’ve been heavily infected with the lazybird bug, i.e. I was feeling super-lazy to run anything longer than half marathon distance (21km). I don’t know whether I’ve overtrained myself, or because I was contemplating whether to proceed running the marathon or not.
And it’s true as what people were saying; ”…the journey towards the starting line of a marathon is much more demanding than the marathon itself…”
Anyway, after a difficult waking up effort on Saturday morning, I was there at Kiara park 6.25am. Kash arrived 5 minutes later. And at 6.40am, we started another long run training.
First loop at Kiara parking area, we chat all the way. Exchanging stories about Xterra, JB Eco Challenge, PD triathlon planning, etcetra. Come to second loop before we headed to main road towards KLGCC, I noticed Kash had heavy breathing and she started to get dropped.
No, I was not over the speed limit and I was running as slow as I normally do, but it clearly seemed like Kash was not in her fittest form that morning. She mentioned that she already can feel the pain at her ankle, the normal spot.
I had my own pain that morning, but not at the legs or knees – but at the rectum!!! Golly, the sensation to burst was on and off just as we were about to finish the second loop at Kiara. I was about to turn back to the toilet to relieve myself and when I turned back, Kash shouted from far, “Nik, go straight ahead, masuk jalan besar”. I cannot make up my mind, so I headed straight, saying bye-bye to the toilet at Kiara Park without visiting it.
Next thing on my mind from then on was, ”Petronas stop – toilet de saviour”. I stopped at the top of the climb at KLGCC to wait for Kash, and then continued running with her. Few minutes later, she got dropped again. Obviously, something was not going right with her. So, I continued my run like a runner who can’t wait to go to the toilet. Ops, was I being too honest?
Arriving Petronas Hartamas at last, and the first thing I did was to settle my twisting stomach, felt like a mini diarrhea. I hope I won’t get this kind of stomach ache during the marathon day or else I’ll be in great trouble. A taxi driver who came to the toilet was also in uneasy situation waiting for me to finish my deal. “Sorry to let you waiting uncle, I was having a bad morning myself”. I even made Kash worried by being in the loo for quite some time. Her sweat had even dried up, that’s how long she waited for me. Sorry Kash.
After a quick thirst quenching with a can of Gatorade from the Petronas shop, we continued our run. I saw 4 runners somewhere along that Plaza Damas, perhaps they ran from Lake Garden to Hartamas. We made our u-turn at the traffic light nearby the Hartamas condominium.
Suddenly, I felt very hungry and to avoid from having heart burn or whatsoever, I finished up whatever fluid left in my fuel belt bottles. At first, we plan not to do another stop at Petronas on our way back, but with me running totally out of water we had to make another quick stop at Petronas. A bottle of Gatorade went straight into my body, another bottle was transferred to my fuel belt bottles.
One worker at the Petronas station asked me how far had I run, to which I said, ”It will be 24km when we finish this run at Kiara Park, we are already on our way back”. His eyes almost exploded upon hearing my answer, and he said that’s a very long distance to run. I told him not to be surprised as many others are also doing the same thing, and we have to do this kind of long distance training if we are to run a marathon, a 42km run.
And his eyes popped out and dropped on the floor and he fainted on the spot.
Continuing the run back, I tried to push a bit harder just to see whether my knees can take the burden or not. I kept on turning my head back to check on Kash who was struggling a bit with her run. I then stopped in front of the Kiara sports center, waiting for her. She asked whether I was bored running alone. ”Nope”. I told her I just wanted to wait for her and run together.
As we arrived at the final climbs besides KLGCC, she told me to carry on as she wanted to walk. From her expression I know she’s having a lot of pain at her ankle. I pushed myself up the climbs, running slowly and as my stopwatch showed 2hr40min, I arrived at the Kiara Park.
Kash arrived few minutes later, and I acted like a water station boy, passing her a can of iced cold 100 plus while jokingly cheering “Go Kash go, another 20km to go!!”. Ahahaha…
So, it was a 25km run altogether. And I completed it with the same timing as my first long distance run training of 24km. What a confidence boost, especially with the knee pain staying below the surface all the way through.
Stretching was then carried on while chatting about this and that. It was a great run for me, and hopefully my condition stays like this or better, two weeks from now.