Sunday, February 12, 2006
As I approach the turning off point on Ting Kau Bridge, I hit the 21km right on 1hr50min, that was exactly my half marathon time last year. "Things have been looking good, I can get this done within four hours." But beyond 21km is uncharted territories for me, the longest I have done on road is 21km. It is the 2006 Hong Kong Marathon, I am running the first full marathon along with 5000 runners. I did a last minute filled in of a GROE team and so I set a target of 4 hours to finish it. The GROE runners get to start with other elite runners at the front, but I am not sure if that helps, being over taken by about 500 fast runners in the first few kilometers really disorientated me. Though as I calmed down and start timing my speed, I realised I am doing 5min/km, not a bad speed for myself. I manage to keep this pace for the first half of the course, beyond that I has no idea how my body would withstand. At around 25km, energy began to leak out of me and I my speed plunged. It was when I hit the low of 9min/km, I decided to drive harder. Every now and again, I would locked on someone who just overtook me and tried to win back to lead, they would eventually shake me off but I played this game for very much the next 10km to keep up the spirit. Toward the X-Harbour Tunnel, many runner began to have bad cramps and at least I was still running, even if merely jogging. Only 5km beyond the tunnel, a blind runner and his guide ran pass me, the guide was constantly talking to the blind runner, encouraging him to shoot for a under 4 hrs finish. That was the final push for me, I just kept up with the pair for the final distance. At the final 1km mark, my left back began to have a cramp, so I have to lock my left arm and swung harder with my right arm to keep the momentum. No time to slow down, only 6 mins left to 4 hrs. Every sense of awareness was directed toward my tired legs, keep running! you can have the cramp of your life beyond the finishing line, but for now take me home! Finally my foot hit the finishing line, the sweet beeping sound caused by the champion chip detector greeted me. It was 3hr59min45sec a hell of a run.