Adidas #KingOfTheRoad 2012 #KOTR run was a blast! It wasn’t easy as it has been awhile since I last ran a 10km route. I did some 7km run last year and it was time to up the ante. One of my earliest 10km run was way back in 2005 and guess what? It was the Adidas King of the Road race! It was held in Kuala Lumpur and this time round the event took place at Sunway Pyramid with the route using the NPE highway. They have two distance, a shorter 10km and a longer 16.8km route. For me I just stuck back to 10km as my overall fitness wasn’t really great and I still get plantar fasciitis pain every now and then.
The information noted that many roads would be closed. Rather than trying to wake up really to park nearer to the race route, my wife volunteered to send me there and pick me up after the running event was over. Sounded good to me and gave me a chance for an extra hour of shut eye. Sometimes the anticipation of going for a run made it difficult for me to sleep. Fortunately I managed to knock off and had quite a good few hours sleep despite turning in rather late from preparing my Adidas running vest with the number bib. The bib was high tech as it was fitted with an electronic tag to mark my running time and upload the details to my Facebook and Twitter account! This was the only race I took part that has such a system!
This Adidas King of the Road was a little different from most race, it didn’t had a qualifying time. No certificate was issue but if you finished it, you get a finisher medal. However it did have max time limit and runners would be swept from the route at 9pm as the organizer must re-open the road for traffic. That makes a maximum of 2 hours to complete the 10km NPE route and it was more than ample for me and most casual runners.
The Sunway Pyramid has an air of carnival atmosphere with drummers drumming up the excitement. Most runners was just loitering at the main entrance of Sunway Pyramid warming up or waiting for friends. I was drop off a little ways away as there many cars and I decided to walk over and double it as a warm up. No big deal. Lots of preparation going on and I could see piles of bananas for the runners for runners to refuel after the run. Made me feel like a monkey! Bananas are consider an ideal nutrient replenishment as it contains abundance of minerals as well as carbohydrates.
First off was the 16.8km runners teeing off 15minutes earlier. Managed to grab a photo shot of the starting line despite the unhappy officials preventing from getting to front fencing area. I wonder why they didn’t chase away the other runners standing there too?
After the first wave went off it was the 10km runners turn. I made my way to the back of the pack. Ain’t going to get any prize, I was there to complete the race as do many. However there are those uniniated runners who would sprint after the gun shot. They would soon run out of steam and would have a hard time completing the run. Long distance run requires pacing oneself to conserve your energy. However I think nowadays there are many experienced runners, plus they look real serious with those running attires! Plus many went high tech with iPhone strapped to their arm band.
I don’t know about iPhone but my Android phone has some pretty good apps for tracking time and distance and mapping out the running route. I decided to conserve my phone battery power figuring to just rely on Adidas online tracking to provide my running performance.
7pm and off we go! And was it really crowded! Took me 2 minutes and a half to reach the starting line and still have to walk a little more before gearing up for a slow jog. The air was refreshing having rained the day before and dawn was just about breaking. The sea of people taking up the NPE route was just incredible!
Sure enough, I was soon overtaking many runners who were upfront. So being in front of the starting line makes no sense for most runners except for those who want to win prizes. Picking up a casual pace, the challenge soon came after clearing the underpass tunnel and passing the NPE toll booth. That’s when the road slopes gently uphill as it ramps up onto the NPE flyover. Just took it easy as it was still in the initial stage of the run.
I have not been training well as I was rather busy for the past many weeks, though my usual weekly run was about 3km. Lately work has been rather busy and there was also the weather complicating my fitness regime. Nevertheless, I try to put in my weekly run as it keeps me healthy and improves my body resistance to flu and illnesses.
Passing by the Continental Tire factory, I decided to take breather and snap some photos. Won’t get the chance to take a photo of my company’s customer factory least of all from the back! And yes, the tire factory was huge! Looking back from my position, there was still a mass of people running, decided to snap some shots too, which also made a few other runners following my lead to snap the scene for their album!
With so many runners, one should not stop in the middle of the pack. My mistake as I had to retie my undone shoelace resulting in a minor crash. Scraped my fingers on the asphalt road, but no bleeding, just a little sore. My fault and and forgetting some runners did not see what’s upfront in their path. No matter just keep going!
The first water station was a welcome relieve and there was a scrunch from runner heading to the first table to get themselves rehydrated. The volunteers here should have tell the runners there were more water further back. Well the next two water stations didn’t have this problem as the volunteers were smarter there.
Elevated NPE highway was quite a stretch, about 45 minutes later I have reached the halfway point and was time to make a U-turn. The return leg was a little easier as the road was more level in comparison. However the exhaustion was creeping in and I had to walk on several instance to recover my stamina. I could see several runners in the same position, running then walking then back to running.
Anyway this run was all for fun! Participants took opportunity for photo shoot, some at the distance markers to show they have made is some part of the way. And I spotted a few serious photographers runners with their DSLR cameras and one with a monopod too! They were more into photography than for the run!
All I had with me was my good ol’ Sony Ericsson X10 Mini Pro which does give me quite a fairly good photos especially during broad daylight. My early morning shots of this Adidas King of the Road race were just all blurry. But when the sun came out, the photos were quite good.
Running with a DSLR is not convenient, it gets heavy as you progress in the run. Hey, I overhead one runner saying his waist back was getting heavier and regret bringing it a long! Imagine it was just a waist bag! When I was tackling Mount Kinabalu I made the same mistake trying to carry a backpack with some stuffs. Should have just chucked them with the porters and paid for their carrying service!
Running a long distance race like this Adidas King of the Road, I try to keep carrying items to a minimum, plus there shouldn’t be any dangling stuffs bouncing around your body. They get really irritating as you progress in your run.
Upon reaching the 8km point, I could feel myself losing stamina. Worst part was my Achilles tendon getting really sore. That wasn’t so good as I felt myself dragging my feet. I have to walk more than run for the final push to the finishing line. Anyway no time pressure, just want to complete the Adidas run and chalked up another completed running challenge!
As I approach the finishing line, I could here the drum beat encouraging runners to keep going to the end. Felt really great to reach the finishing line. Checked my watch and saw my clock in time at 1 hour 27 minutes. Later when I checked my Facebook and Twitter it showed 1 hour 24 minutes, I guess it took into account of the scrunch of running crowd and started the clock timing from the time I stepped pass the starting line.
It wasn’t easy but I could do it. Walking away from the finishing there were other race organizer distributing leaflets. The Desa Park City Run look rather interesting and might just give it a try! Anyway, I was tired and smelly and rather wet from sweat, but could not go home without a car. Had to call my wife for pick up, so had a good breakfast at McDonalds inside Sunway Pyramid. Hung around to snap some photos for my souvenir and personal blog before rendevous with my wife at Sunway Hospital. No choice, gotta walk way far as the roads were simply all jam up! More exercise after the Adidas King of the Road run!
Ok, ok, my running time wasn’t really great but at least I completed the 10km route with a very aching and sore Achilles tendon. One interesting aspect of this Adidas KOTR race, it had an electronic tag to record your running time! Whenever you ran pass a checkpoint it would clock you in. If you have set up the connection to your Twitter and Facebook account prior to the race, it would post the time result up! Really cool!