Wednesday, August 10, 2016

A Little Madness ...

With no races planned in the near future, I've been finding it a lot more difficult to get my sorry ass out on the roads to train. Kicking myself out of bed has been the toughest bit of training I've been doing! When the cell phone dishes its military styled bugle themed alarm, I find myself making tons of excuses and wondering why it isn't raining or something so I could pull the sheets closer and just continue to sleep in.

Actually, I'm not being entirely honest when I say I don't have races in the near future. I do have them but they're mostly 5k and 10k races closer to home and at the risk of sounding cocky, I don't really feel the need to wake up so early everyday to train for them which is why I don't have the motivation to train these days. My daily mileage when I do drag myself out of bed more than covers the training needed for that.

What next ...?

But I know that will have to change soon. One 'huge' race I have planned is slated for November. I've always said I will never sign up for it but I keep doing it year on year like the idiot that I am. And that race happens to be the Toyo Tires Putrajaya 100 Miles. Wait, before anyone jumps to any insane conclusions, it's not the 100 miles and neither is it the 100km distances that I've signed up for. The past two editions saw me running the 52km category but this year I've opted to be even more idiotic and sign up for the 78km category!

Don't ask me why I pull stunts like this cos if I knew the answer to that I'd be able to solve the worlds problems at one go too. Maybe it's cos I like the way the Pacat team organize their races. I took part in their first ever 50km race eons ago when the sport of ultra running wasn't all that much of a thing. Back then I could count the participants with my fingers and toes. I suffered like hell that day and swore to every God that would listen I was never going to join one of these 'sick' races again.


But there I was, cheerily clicking away like no tomorrow when entries opened up again the following year in 2014. Then once again in 2015, this time I even suckered Jeanie and Foo to join me in my stupidity. Oh boy, how I suffered through those 3 years. I never learn!

The first year was the worst cos it was done in the morning and by 12 noon (we all know how blisteringly hot Putrajaya can get at noon), I was walking aimlessly around some highway in Putrajaya hallucinating and talking to myself. The second year, I had Jamie along to get lost with and go the wrong way, with both of us ending up doing 56.5km instead of 52km. The third year, being held at night didn't make one goddamn difference cos I still suffered like crazy!

The first ever P50K, note the number of participants.

Then like the silly fool I still am, I go and sign up again, this time for the 78km category ... sigh! Why I insist on displaying my foolishness to the public at large is beyond me. But at least, I won't go this alone. I've got two equally insane fellows (you know who you are) to keep me company and hear me me swear once again to never sign up for races like these.

But silliness aside, the Toyo Tires Putrajaya 100 Miles is really a very well organized event run by the Pacat Adventure Team, a group of highly passionate ultra runners who knows what running is all about. The race is not a competitive one, the only competition you'll have, mind you, is with your inner self screaming at you for being so dumb. It's more of an event to give wannabe ultra pretenders like me a chance to taste what the pros go through. The cut off time is incredibly generous, in fact too generous if you ask me. But that's the whole concept of this race anyway.

P52K 2014

Now, I'm no ultra runner, never claimed to be one and never will be either. I'm between marathons at the moment and signing up for this would give me the chance to work the legs for really long distances of running, something that was solely lacking in my previous training. My legs have gotten 'soft' and this is one way to kick start them again before I embark on my next phase of marathon training targeting a March 2017 marathon.

Competitive or non-competitive, the training will still be needed to be put in to get through the race in one piece and hopefully that will build up my motivation to run again. I've always taken all my training seriously and having a goal to train for makes training a little more fun. So here's to finding my running mojo back again soon!

P52K 2015

*I can't remember who took the pictures so photo credit to respective photographers.

7 comments:

  1. Personally I think you need to decide what is it you want as a long distance runner. Some go for speed, some the ultra distance. For the years since we've met, I think you are more suited for speed. Ultra may not be in your best interest because it's kind of training will be different. If you are feeling the pinch of injuries after injuries, choosing an ultra distance may not be the wisest thing to do. Why not focus more on shorter runs for now and build from there. Work to a specific goal and see it grow....just saying

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    1. That's my plan actually Francis. I'm looking at putting in some emphasis for speed work which is why I'm signing up for all the 5K/10K races I can find nearby at the moment. They give me the chance to go all out and strengthen the legs for the next 3 months before I embark on the endurance part of the plan, hence the 78k race to start that off. I'm definitely not an ultra kind of person, mainly cos I can't afford the training time needed for that and secondly, it doesn't excite me. Hopefully with this plan, by the time I get back to marathon training next year, I would have built and strengthened up my base a lot more. I'm still aiming for that BQ one day!

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    2. Then go back to basics. Start with strength training and base aerobic build up. When you are stronger, train on speed. Not the other way round. Doing too much speed is a mistake now. And going into ultra to gain base training is also not recommended. You just get good at gong slow. (No offense) but you weekly mileage really doesn't need to be ultra high to achieve BQ. Trust me. I have stumbled through all that before. This is to save you from making my mistakes

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    3. Thanks for the advice, Francis. They really do mean a lot to me. Let me work on a plan, somewhat like what you mentioned. I've been trying all kinds of plans with limited success so far. It's really difficult to gauge if I'm actually on the right path sometimes.

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    4. Thanks for the advice, Francis. They really do mean a lot to me. Let me work on a plan, somewhat like what you mentioned. I've been trying all kinds of plans with limited success so far. It's really difficult to gauge if I'm actually on the right path sometimes.

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    5. Part of the intriguing thing about running is: We never quite 'arrive'. You've heard too often the cliche that "it's a journey". But the journey is what makes it interesting. Results are just affirmations. Not all that important. I see that you are having some doubts. But seeing your potential is what I am more interested in. You have what it takes to BQ. And that is not just saying. But you have to really figure out what works best for you. And stop wasting time on what may actually ruin you. Believe me, you won't need a 100km weekly mileage to achieve that.

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    6. Thanks for the vote of confidence about my abilities to BQ, though I'm always doubting myself about it. That said, I'm definitely going to work on it and your advice today has given me a slight renewal in my confidence and abilities! Time to focus on the positives instead of the negatives! Once again, thanks for the advice, they're really appreciated especially coming from you.

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