SAFRA Army Half Marathon 2013

I was still tired from my 24 hours journey the day earlier and still suffering from the jet lag that I only managed to go to bed past mid night, with a help of Ezee Sleep, a concoction like its name suggest, was supposed to make you drowsy and help you to sleep I found on a 7 Eleven counter. Yes it works, but I kept waking up and only had intermittent sleep.

Ezee Sleep

My plan to enter the pen early did not work as I dozed off when I hit the snooze button on the alarm clock. I only went into the pen 15 minutes before the flag off. I started the race from the back of some 16000 strong crowd. I was trapped and had to weave through the crowd fighting for space to run.  The course was so narrow after 7 km, no wider than 2 meters on garden paths. I had to run on the grass, concrete pavement and the road kerb. It was tiring and hard on my leg from all the lateral movements.I took my first gel at KM 8, and a capsule of Hammer Endurolyte at KM 10. There were so many sharp turns and few bottlenecks. The worst was at KM 7.  I was lucky to have overtaken majority of the runners at that point. Some slower runners were held to a standstill up to 25 minutes.

I only managed to run my race after we left the garden path at KM 11 and tried to make up for the lost ground but it was too late. I felt tired and seem to have lost my speed. I cant press on even though the road was wide open in front of me. Then there was a long incline at KM 15. I took another gel and took a brief walk at a water station around KM 16. My intention was to sprint the remaining 5 km, but I felt rather heavy and was happy to just finish it. I ended up crossing the finish line in 1:43:46 and ranked 589 from a total of 15 727 finishers (top 4%). It should have been my PB in an official race, but it was short by some 600 meters.

Though I was a little disappointed, knowing that I can do much better than that since my average heart rate was just above Zone 1. I have to look at it positively as advised by my coach:

a) you need to arrive early 
b) you can still run well on a poor build up ie long travel hour 
c) it's not an easy PB course 
d) it's possible to run pretty quick in lower HR

Though the organisation especially the water station was superb, I still think the course was terrible for a half marathon this big.

Race Statistics:
Nett Time: 1:43:46
Gun Time: 1:44:33
Rank Total: 589 / 15 727 Finisher
Rank Male: 556 /14 258 Finisher
Rank Malaysian: unknown
Shoe: Asics Gel Excell 33

Run details on Garmin Connect:
SAFRA Army Half Marathon by Syafei at Garmin Connect - Details


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