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Botani Putrajaya Endurance Run #Putra24

#Putra24 is my first 24 hours endurance race. A last minute entry as I never planned to participate in this even though I knew about it as Lina was a race director for #Ungu55, one of the races under Botani Putrajaya Endurance Run 2016. THANX to Malaysian Ultra Runners Association, I was given a bib to run in this race.

The initial idea was to run #Ungu55 which requires the ladies to complete 55km between 8:30pm to 8:30am. However, since I was on a mission to raise fund with my Adopt A Village friends to build a school for the children in Laprak, Nepal, I took this opportunity to once again run for money like what I did during Nike 101010 and KL Maran 2015.

Why build a school in Laprak? Because every child has the rights to education. Because the children in Laprak go to a school made of a tent. When the wind blows or when it rains, it is not comfortable or even safe. Let me share a post on my stay in Laprak soon. Stay tuned.

The folks who organised Botani Putrajaya Endurance Run are Running Project. The same folks who brought me to test the Langkawi Climb and Run route. These are also the very same people who have a special spot in their heart for Nepal. A short chat follows as I am given a #Putra24 bib to run as much as I could. 

The game plan was still to run as much as I could during the day using #Putra24 bib to track my mileage rather than competing, then rest before continuing at night with my original #Ungu55 bib to run 55km. Now that is the game play in my head...it was solely my fault that I didn't understand that Running Project has upgraded my to #Putra24 so I could run as much as I could and wanted in 24 hours ---> Get my blurness? Now that's why my nickname is Missyblurkit.

I also knew that I needed my rest because I was only cleared to run by my GP after a bout of viral fever. The body was still slightly feverish every now and then with a slight cough lingering. But if the doctor said I am good to race with a combination of jog walk, why not just go ahead with the fund raiser?

So on race day, I flag off at 9:17am. Later than the original 8:30am while we sorted out my bib transfer. It was still nice and cool when I took my first lap of the course which was 4.6km. Scenic view of the lake, with lots of trees. An interesting park with different fauna and flora. When one runs near the herb and spice garden, you get lovely whiffs of yummy basil and some spices that I swore made me hungry because they reminded me freshly cooked curry!

In the morning half, we have the company of fellow runners and the crew.  And of course we get cheered on by the folks who came to jog and cycle around the park. It is such a beautiful place, no wonder families thronged this place and some with their picnic baskets as well.
The morning came with the company of families spending their time in the park.
Look up and smile. There's a friendly photographer somewhere keeping us all company, rain or shine. Thank you Rany!
Beautiful orchids at our water stop and lunch spot.

The afternoon was a different ball game. The sun was on our back in many stretches. I honestly hated the afternoon sun. With an occasional wind, certain stretches felt like a sauna. I thought I was the only one who thought so but a few runners shared the same thoughts when we chatted while we did our loops. Chatting every now and then with different runners did wonders to lift one's mood when the sun got nastier in the afternoon.

Late afternoon, rain came as expected. It provided much relief to bring down the humidity. Of course, at this point I was still under the impression that I was only running the earlier half for fund raiser not competitive. So I took a break when it rained. I was also not keen to get my shoes wet because I wanted to wear the ultraBOOST ST for the entire race and I don't fancy wearing wet soggy shoes even though I have 2 spare change of socks in my gear change bag.

The rain stopped to a drizzle and I thought I go out for a couple of laps to make it for 2 more laps to make it 10 laps before I begin my #Ungu55 shift at 830pm. The game play at this point was to complete 22 loops at the end of 24 hours to make it my first 3 figure mileage at 101.2km. Went out in a new change of top, sleeveless since the sun is out. A shoes change to Adidas Supernova Sequence Boost because this shoe has a "higher" front leather strip that stops water from puddles and splashes from getting into the shoes compared to ultraBOOST ST. A tad heavier but I guess this will have to do for a few laps while the route was still probably in puddles after the rain. Good move for a shoe change but I still preferred my ultraBOOST ST (a shoe review post coming up soon based on this route).
Keeping ourselves warm and dry when the rain was a tad heavy.
Gear change. Tied the poncho round my waist instead of wearing it. Its an insurance in case the rain starts while I am still out there. 

2 laps dusted bringing me to 10 laps. I take a break for dinner. By now the cough and fever was showing tell tale signs of returning. Lina comes up to me. "Why are you sitting? You are on #Putra24 bib. Go out and run."  Ooops. I have been upgraded and blur me didn't realise it at all. Dang! 2 hours wasted during the rain and another 1 hour plus idling resting.

Started again shortly before the #Ungu55 girls flagged off. By now, it was dark. Headlamps were switched on. My astigmatism problem is perhaps my worse disability at night. The glare and lights make me nauseous. So I resorted to trying to distract myself my now counting every step that I took. Lost count of how many "1 to 100" that I counted but it helped.

I was still going fine with a walk jog combination until around 1am. The fever and cough came back. Popped the fever tabs and resorted to resting every 2 loops. Body was kind of chilly. Let's say 1 loop was now close to an hour with rest etc. By now I was getting a bit worried at the back of my head that I wouldn't be able to hit my personal target of 22 loops. So I settled for 20 loops which was more for donation reason.
Do we look like mining workers in running gear?
The bridge right before Timing Mat 2 is my favourite stretch, The sounds of our foot steps on the wooden planks was music to my ears ending with a beep when we cross the mat... 
Comforting hot beancurd (tao fu fa) for our tea break. Loads of protein and sugar (only if you opt for syrup to go with it.) A very well thought menu by the organisers for all our meals!

At Lap 18, I was walking darn slow. Sifu Seow Kong passed me and asked, how many laps to go. I said I am doing Lap 18 and his calm reply "Wow, you do not have much time left" and he jogged off. Gosh I thought that I was in deep trouble and trying to pick up pace which I did but only to return to start line this time feeling really cold and coughing like a fire engine.
Congras Sifu Seow Kong with 142.6km! Thank you for all the encouragement and pep talk!

Told myself I would take a break to recharge, My final break. Josephine came back to the start line and saw me resting. She was going strong and had one more loop to hit 22 loops. I asked if I could move with her. She was going to walk and I needed some motivation at 6 plus in the morning. We walked with a hot coffee in my hand to keep me warm. We chatted but she did remind me too that I didn't have much time left for 2 laps and I should jog more than walk. And Ariff jogs pass on the right time with some music from his handphone. OK...I have my slight boost to start moving faster. I tried catching up with Ariff and gained speed. Returned to start line at 1:02 (too much walking)...1 more lap to hit 20 and now I was ready to jog all the way. Completed Lap 20 at 40:36 walking up only the Slope after timing Mat 1.
Someone gave me an apple. She said the Vitamin C will help and the sugar will also keep me going. I can't remember who it was but thank you!
I return to start line. Happy that I have at least completed 20 laps. The Race Director Ray told me that I have time for one more lap. I declined thinking that I only had 30 minutes to do it. On hind site I should have just gone out because I actually had 40 minutes left to 8:30am. No point crying over split milk. I am pretty glad to finish 20 laps with a viral fever and 2nd day of my menses. Lesson learnt, never sign up for races without taking into consideration our menstrual cycle.

20 laps...92km. I am pretty stoked after all the shenanigans. My first 24 hours endurance race done and dusted.

Official results
And yes, if you are keen to donate for Laprak's rebuilding fund, drop me a mail. We require approximately USD55,000 to build a proper school building for the kids. You may donate a lump sum or RM0.10 or RM1 or RM10 per kilometre. Every cents matters.

THANX for reading! Do also stalk the following channels for more updates and to show some love too:

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