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Sunday, February 27, 2011

NTUC Healthcare U-Run 2011

My first stair event and first race for the year. In fact, it is my first 10km race since April 2010. But that was a trail race so if I exclude that, the next 10km race was Nov 2009 which was another trail race which means the last 10km road race I did was the inaugural Yellow Ribbon Run in Sep 2009! Has it really been that long?

Anyway, the only reason I signed up for this was I got a free slot and since it was free, decided to go all the way and try for the OMB event which involves a 10km road race followed by a 30 floors climb up One Marina. I figured with my bad knees I couldn't survive a full vertical marathon of 60 to 70 floors but a 30 floors sound doable.

With 3 practice at the HBD block behind me, I started off this morning run with just that little bit of extra confidence. I wasn't going to gun for any PB. In fact, for the past 3 weeks, mileage has been rather low what with the holidays, the mostly easy runs at RL and the many trails, the legs wasn't really up to scratch for a race and I reckoned if I can just do a 6 minutes pace run, I should have sufficient reserve to go up the 30 floors and survive the climb in one piece. Just to be sure and kiasu a bit, applied a whole lot of Jumpstart before setting off.

The run was flagged off punctually. Weather was pretty good, mainly cloudy with some sunlight only on the return leg. The route took us down Esplanade Bridge to Marina Promenade via the floating platform and the Flyer, up Crawford Street and Kallang Road before returning via Marina Promenade. I started a bit too fast covering the first 1 km in under 5 minutes and by the 2nd km was breathing hard. So I relaxed a bit and went slower and by the halfway mark was doing a more comfortable 5.30 pace. I was on target for the sub 60 finish and in fact was staring at a PB if I go all out but with the staircase in mind, I resist the temptation and just continue as is, enjoying the breeze and the sights.

I crossed the run finish line at just under 54 minutes although my Garmin had registered 10km about 20 metres  from the finish line. From there, I took my time to walk all the way to the building. I reckoned I need to save whatever energy I have left for the stairs. Once inside the building, I run up the stairs 2 steps at a time but on the 2nd floor, I realised I was more tired than I thought and had to walk up 1 step at a time. Along the way, it was amusing to see so many people struggling. Nobody was running and every floor, somebody was either bend over, stretching, sitting down or bending down to get the cool air from the air vents. I was so tempted to join them but with every floor, I keep telling myself, only XX left and eventually I walked up the 30 floors without stopping even though it took me all of 9 minutes 40 seconds!

M came up shortly and promptly threw up. Guess the stuffy air in the staircase did her in.

So after all that huffing and puffing, what did we get for the effort?

These nice views:

And of course the goodie bag and Finisher Tee
And a muddy pair of shoes!

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