ACCOMPLISHING THE IMPOSSIBLE
What do you do, when someone gives to you “a mission impossible”? Well, You take it, change it from the “Impossible” and make it “Possible!”
When I woke up this morning at 3am, I didn’t think I would run a half marathon, but that’s exactly what happened. This write-up is not about patting myself on the back, but rather sharing the inspiration that compelled me to do something like this in the hope that you too will be inspired to push yourself beyond your comfort zone today because no one knows just how many days we have left on this planet and YOLO-You Only Live Once.
Race day morning was incredibly nerve-wracking. I was up way earlier than I needed to be. I forced some peanut butter sandwich and coffee down, while my stomach felt like it was flipping over. But it’s time to nut up or shut up and off we go! Off until we got stuck in traffic in Cyberjaya at 4am in the morning on a Sunday. And all the traffic was headed the same place we are. What does that say about me and other runners? Up to run a grueling test of persomal endurance at five in the morning just for a Tee-shirt, a medal and bragging rights! Unlike other road race, the organiser provided different coloured Tee for 10km, 21km and 42km runners which to me, was actually kinda awesome. You can differentiate each categories just by a glance at their tees.
Then I heard the emcees saying that the Zumba warm up session was about to begin.. Woot…..woot……my favourite part of the event! Hubby kissed me, wished me luck and said “See you at the finish line, B”…and I was off, I had a nice spot-right in front of the stage….I put on my dancing shoes and the next thing I knew and heard was Justin Timberlake saying that he can’t stop the feeling……Muahhahhhahhhaaa…LOL
After that I locate my starting coral. You know those moments when you realized you have made a big mistake and it’s too late. This was one of those moments. No, it wasn’t a mistake running. The mistake was looking around and knowing that I actually didn’t belong at the tail end.
After ten minutes of walking, I finally make it to the starting line. I’m trying to stay calm and pace myself, but let me be honest here, I had adrenaline pumping like mad. I did see a few interesting people along the way as I went such as some in costumes, in tu-tus, others were running barefoot along the way as I went zipping past. As we came to the first water station it was mob rule. The volunteers were trying to speed up with the cups but it was really messy and disorganised.
It’s sad that so many people were already dying for water. And there were a dozen porta potties with a line for each. I’m guessing a personal best wasn’t in the cards for those runners that day. I tried to bypass the crowd at that water station and I just kept running.
The route was nice. It’s not flat but nothing too steep either. There were inclines littered along the route to make it less boring for runners. There were a few unlit roads that we had to run though.
By the 10km, things were looking up. Even though, there were changes in the routes but the walkers were weeded out and it was just runners. It was great to be hanging with the crowd. No more stress and free to just go along at my own pace.
I was enjoying the crowds and cruising along happily putting no thoughts into what lay ahead. Then the route led us to a busy main road (a.k.a the highway), there were no marshalls on duty, only cones….Then my mind and thoughts instantly led me to Evelyn Ang, an awesome runner and pacer. She would have been here, running and pacing with us, if it was not for the unfortunate incident that has happened to her last year. My thoughts, hope and prayers goes out to her and her family. Get well soon! At the back of my mind, fear crept into me. What if the motorcycle could not see me? What if that bus lost control? What if that speeding car lost control and crashed into me? At this particular route, it was really unsafe and terrifying for me and for the runners- Dear organisers, we hope that you could ensure safety for the runners and should consider safety as your main prioity in a running event!
The route was tougher in the second half of the race somewhere near MCMC and Shaftbury route but I was able to negotiate those pretty okie. That is when I had to have the inner pep talk to keep it going. I stopped and walked a bit at every aid station. Mostlyso I could drink. I tried to pretend that I was a professional runner and ran through and drank at the water station and I almost died due to drowning, So I accepted that I lacked a certain coordination and just walked through the rest.
Keep going, Chrisy! Keep going, Chrisy! Then my thoughts diverted to Cinderella…Why Cinderella? Because she is one happy motivated runner. Sleeping beauty- not a runner, snow white-not a runner, but Cinderella is a runner, although not the most practical runner, glass slippers and all. She is happy to stay motivated. Sure, she had struggles. Sometimes it’s hard to stay motivated and to keep going…Cinderella started off with the same running issues everyone could have: a slave to housework, negative nagging family members, a stressful job and heavy work demand. Then she tossed of the glass slippers and went out for a night run. The rest is history! The moral of the story is “Change your impossible to possible!”
Then at the 18km, I saw the light……NO……Seriously! I saw the light! The lighting and thunder and guess what? It suddenly started pouring cats and dogs. Flashes of lighting streaked menacingly in the distance and the skies were as dark as the depths of Arkham…Ohhhhhhhh, Yes, the stage where you “hit the wall”, my mind was completely numb by this point that if you asked me my name, I wouldn’t be able to answer you.
Markers and signages were well placed and it was really motivating and good feeling watching each KM go past. Seeing the front runners, embracing and running in the rain and fly by was incredible- It amazes me that pretty much they were running twice the speed that I was running-perhaps feeling hungry and rushing to get their “roti telur” or “Telur goyang”??
Then somewhere between 19km and 20km, I spotted a few runners having a picnic by the roadside..eating, drinking and chatting……LOL…it was a unique sight to see in a marathon race…..or maybe a foodiethon race?….LOL
Anyway, with my whole body soaking wet, drops of rain still kept falling on my head, to make matters worst, my shoes lace kept coming out two to threee times. Fatigue was increasing but I was focused and motivated by the fact that I had only 1 km more to go and I was doing well for myself, not for anyone else. My race, my pace, my ‘twincity and my medal!
One final KM and I will have finished! The true moment where I realized no matter how bad I may hurt, with lots of chaffing and aches and pains, how tired I am, I will be crossing the finish line- It’s a personal taste of freedom only a runner knows when you have crossed the hump and you finished strong! Grinning like an idiot and just loving every second of it and yet letting every second go by in a blur..Collected my medal! Horray! Then, I went walking endlessly just to collect and to find for the 21km Finisher Tee-shirt counter. (Eventhough the organisers did provide the runners a race guide, however after running a distance of 21km- maybe my mind was a little bit delirious so I had to asked other runners for directions….I Hope that the locations/counters and logistics could be better and could improve next year. And what perhaps wasn’t so positive (but ultimately maybe is in the hands of the organisers) is the safety of the runners during road running. Now excuse me, while I go do the dance of joy!
It’s hard to explain the feeling unless you have also accomplished something you felt was impossible! It doesn’t have to be a half marathon. We all have dreams and goals. And each one of those takes steps to complete them. The message here is that you can do anything you want to do if you want it bad enough. Just take the steps to do it and don’t give up. Yes, it may be difficult but the most valuable things are usually the hardest to obtain. You can do it! If I can do it, anybody can!