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Sunday, December 23, 2012

SCMS 2012: My Second Half Marathon

A marathon sounds far. After all its 42.195km. So a half marathon sounds better since there is the word "half". But when we look at the distance, its 21.1km. Not too badlah. At least it is not 42.195km! Either way, its all about numbers and how we choose to look at it.

And the story goes that I run my second half marathon for 2012 in Singapore. Some pals who ran SCMS 2011 actually discouraged me from taking part. One of the main reasons was that SCMS 2012 was barely 2 weeks from my previous half marathon in Penang - the fact is I am not a season runner nor am I known to be training regularly. However the main reason was that most of them did not exactly feel happy with SCMS 2011. Heard their accounts from the start to the finish line including water station complains, medics and wet finish at the Padang.

Still...I ran...and am glad to report that it was a brilliant run. Many were surprised that I had none of their complaints. Here's some photos to show you my very enjoyable and good run despite my food poisoning bout. I did not take much photos while running as it interferes with my running momentum which I find it hard to regain my pace. Stops are only for drinks, tired (boredom more like it) or if my shoe laces are loose.

Snippits of my run from the time I woke up at 3:30a.m for my brekkie:
Jon (one of the 3 stooges) packed me a yummy and power packed sandwich of multigrain sandwich of ham, cheese and tobiko.
A quick pit stop at Vivo City toilet before making my way to the starting line. Its good that the mall opened its toilets to the runners unlike my Penang experience that we had to use the portable toilets which ran out of water before the half marathoners were flagged off. This is something our Malaysian malls and buildings should consider if a run if flagged off at their vicinity. 
Its a queue for the boys too!
A quick pic with my cousin who was also running in the half marathon.
Our half marathon route.
Runners were flagged off in different batches. A good idea so that we all do not pack like sardines while running and waiting. During the wait, it was good music to keep us all excited and ready to dash off.
A quick pic before my batch is flagged off. Skies getting brighter...this should be almost 645a.m.
Done 4km and another 17km to go. All these distance markers and encouraging quotes by runners is a good touch to keep us going.
Scenic run as we go through Universal Studios. Lots of photo opportunity but I chose to run. After all I didn't want to ruin my momentum and I meant to better my time from my Penang run.
And how could one stop with all these encouragements here, there and everywhere? Continue runninglah!
Yes...we run on and start taking shaky photos. LOL.
Gels being distributed even for half marathons. I am impressed! Grabbed one sachet but did not consume it since there was enough water and isotonic drinks at the water points.
There was folks all about supporting. This photo from another route is by Singapore Sports Council. 
I didn't want to stop for photos since I took 2 toilet breaks in my first 10km.
Such apt message at the 15th km mark when most runners are quite prone to giving up. What do I do? I run onlah! 
Crossed the finish line (finally)
Clocked 2:50:03 with 2 toilet breaks. Its not the best but certainly better than my previous run in Penang. 
Runners catching up with each other and refuelling with bananas, water and 100 Plus isotonic drinks. Note the information counter at the white tent  - well manned and the volunteers were well equipped with answers.
Plenty of space at the Padang for runners and their supporters. The ground had dried up considerably after the afternoon's heavy rain fall on Saturday.
My finisher medal! 

The Standard Chartered Marathon Singapore 2012 has been the best run that I have experienced in 2012. Clearly well organised and the organisers have certainly improved the conditions and all from the 2011 SCMS. Not hesitating to run it again in 2013 and to a large extent, I think any future runs that I participate will be undoubtedly benchmarked against SCMS2012. Some pics taken from our coach on Saturday's rainy afternoon when we went around checking out SCMS's routes.
Baricades are placed along the roads that we were going to run.
Anticipating rain (its the Monsoon season and rain can be anytime...), there's lots of wooden planks being laid so there is no muddy finish at the Padang.
The public were well informed with lots of road signs informing of road closure for the runs. Motorist are even informed of alternative roads to use and numbers to contact. This is a good step that our Malaysian marathon organisers should practice! In fact these signs were visible even on Friday itself when I went around the island on my own.
More distance markers with encouraging quotes by runners.

See you again SCMS in 2013! For more pics and updates, check out the Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/MarathonSG

Here's a video from the Singapore Sports Council.

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More pics in the album: Standard Chartered Marathon Singapore 2012

PS: My 2 earlier post on SCMS 2012: