It was the last 200m of the half marathon and I squeezed out whatever energy I had left in my legs to give a last sprint, brushing my sweat against people and trying to reach the finish line. As I crossed the finish line, I felt relieved and elated that it was finally over, that I had completed my very first half marathon.
But when I saw the timing I took to complete it, I felt a tinge of regret, because of all the things I did wrongly. I didn’t manage to get a good sleep before the race, I didn’t eat enough before the race, I didn’t manage to pace myself properly because my phone was showing me the wrong pace due to the high-rise buildings affecting my phone’s GPS, I even ran a little too much the day before the race.
Nonetheless, it was a lesson to be learnt. And now that it’s over, I’m looking forward to my favourite part about races…. Pictures and FOOD with my friends after!
I’ve never been interested in running; even during my army days, I never really trained for my IPPT but somehow always managed to pass (never going below 12 minutes for my 2.4km run though). However, one day in 2016, I decided to start running on my own because I stumbled upon an article regarding the benefits of LISS (Low Intensity Steady State cardio) and wanted to try it in hope of burning some calories.
I started by taking it easy at first, but I soon became obsessed with trying to increase the distance I can run. All that was going through my mind while running was that I MUST run more than I did last week. Eventually, I got tired of running every week, tired of just trying to clock mileage. I got so sick of running that I stopped running completely. That was until I joined ROCKrunners this year.
I’ve been following ROCKrunners for a while and I’ve always wanted to join their weekly runs, but I feared that I would be awkward because I didn’t know anyone there, so I didn’t. Then one day, I was scrolling through my Instastories and I saw the story that ROCKrunners had posted, of them doing intervals and they seemed like they were having fun. I don’t know what came over me at that moment, but I messaged them on Instagram, telling that that I was interested to join them for their run the following week.
The following Saturday, as I made my way to The Lawn, I got more nervous with each step I took. When I arrived, I joined them for the warm up and introduced myself. During the run, I got to know Sheryl, Sam, Dalton and Philly.
Since then, I’ve been joining ROCKrunners on the weekly runs on a regular basis. I now enjoy running so much more because of the company that I have. Running with friends is so much more enjoyable than running alone; encouraging each other, being motivated just by looking at the back of your friends who are running in front of you. (I want to say a big THANK YOU to everyone who has ever ran with me and cheered me on.)
I’ve always wanted to attempt a half marathon but I feared that I wouldn’t be able to complete it or that I would end up with an unsatisfactory timing. Then I saw Shan Ming’s Instastory about SingTel’s Race Against Cancer. I went to look up the race and saw that they had a category of 15km. I thought to myself that 15km “seems manageable” so I decided to sign up for it after a few days of consideration.
On the race day, I remember feeling nervous and fearful that I would not be able to complete the 15km. However, while waiting for the race to start, Shan Ming and Connie kept encouraging me and told me to take it easy as it was my first race. At the end of the race, I realised my fears were unfounded and I did better than I expected.
Something I’ve come to realise is that life is your own race, run whatever pace you want to run, and be happy with it. Sometimes you’ll feel invincible, sometimes you’ll stumble and fall, but just smile and enjoy the moment, even in the hardest of times.