Running a marathon is something I’ve always wanted to do, I finally manned up and entered the Penang Bridge International marathon. For those that know me personally I haven’t stopped banging on about it, so you’ve missed out.
The event started at 2am on the 17th November 2013, it was strange being up at that time to run. Unfortunatly I hadn’t been able to sleep before the race which was a shame as I didn’t feel overly energised. I met my uncle down stairs in the lobby of the hotel and off we went, out to the 25 degree heat..
There was quite a long wait until the race started as we were there quite early. They had a young girl sing the official marathon song and a brass band. The event was sponsored my Milo (a type of chocolate milk for those that do not know what it is). They started the race two minutes early, off we went as we crossed the start line we so as our good byes and off we ran.
In all honestly the first 7 miles were a breeze, reason being I really needed the loo and was just waiting to see a port-a-loo to relieve by bladder. Really wishing I had gone one last time before we set off running. The drink stations were good with a mixture of cups and bottles. I managed to top my hand held bottle up with the cups so I’m really glad I brought it along. It had started spitting with rain which was nice and cooling considering the climate I didn’t find my self getting too hot. By mile 13 I had run the full length of Penang Bridge, honestly in the car it’s not that long, running on the other hand it’s a really, really, really long bridge. Grabbing bananas and cakes filled with cream along the way, kept my energy stores up!
Being my first marathon I’m glad I can say I only hated two miles of the run, between 18 and 20 I was talking to myself, grunting at people, and wanted to quit. Things turned around at mile 20 as I saw my Uncle Jim running the other way! We high fived and he shouted ‘yeahhhh baby’ that’s what got me through the next six miles. It’s only 6 miles I thought to my self, you can do this!! I did. At mile 22 I took advantage of ice cold sponges, ice packs for knees, and muscle spray. There were stations throughout but I only used them once, and it was probably the best thing the organisers could have arranged. Further along the course the fire brigade had two hoses spraying water to run through it felt fantastic at the time but it meant I was soaked until the end of the race. The last 100m were drawing close I told a Malay guy that I loved the roundabout we were running round, he must have thought I was crazy. After waving to my Aunt and Uncle, I ran like Forrest Gump or maybe Usain Bolt either way it was the fastest I have ever run before!!
I finished with a time of 5 hours 8 minutes, at the time I was glad it was over, thinking about it now though I could have done it in under 5 hours, If I didn’t have needed the loo and slowed down. After the race I proudly collected my medal which is now displayed with pride at home,I even had a cup of Milo to celebrate.
After a quick stop at Starbucks for an Iced Green Tea, I went back to the hotel and pigged out on doughnuts, with the excuse of having runners munchies!!
All I’m going to say about aching is that I sat down in the shower after as I didn’t have the strength to use my legs. Thankfully the next morning I could walk, I didn’t ache too much all in all it was an amazing experience and I’m glad I was crazy enough to run it!
I’m officially a real runner now due to the fact my big toe nail is falling off!!
See you next year Penang….. Well maybe 🙂