07 August 2010

Chiang Kai Shek Fun Run 2010

My brain was registering only quiet darkness in its peaceful state of repose and repair, when suddenly the intrusive monophonic tune of Kefka's Theme began crescendoing faintly first in the backdrop of my pure blankness - forcefully kicking me into consciousness. It was 3.30 am; my cellphone alarm was violently vibrating on my bedside table. Time to wake up, it called. With a swift press of a button, it was silenced into a 5 minute snooze mode. Sleep was beckoning me back into it's wide armed embrace, when without warning, my cellphone once again rang scandalously. Leo was calling, it was my wake up call number 2. Time to get ready, Kat.

July 25, 2010. A Sunday. It felt awfully wrong to be waking up so early on my day of rest, but I had promised Leo and the others at the Grand Family Association that I will be participating in the Chiang Kai Shek Alumni Fun Run 2010. It was also a matter of school spirit - to support the activity of my dear alma mater. Thus, with a heavy, lazy body, I pushed myself out of bed and began to dress up.
The run won't be until 6 in the morning at the Mall of Asia Complex, but since I will be hitching a ride, I had to be extra early since Leo's school bus has other stop overs - Berns, Irene and their friend.

When we arrived, day was just about to break. The sky was still a lonely grayish blue, with hints of red violets. My stomach was slightly protesting over its emptiness, but we couldn't find any open stores that could cater to my sad tummy. I'll make it up to you later, I told it - and it quieted down like a child anticipating his big reward after some unwilling sacrifice.

A few morning stretches, a quick jog and we felt our muscles warming up. We found Liza and the others, who handed us our blue jerseys and numbers. I was Runner No. 4602 - going for the 5km run.
There were four categories, three of which are official - 3km, 5km and 10km runs, with gun starts of 6.00, 6.15 and 6.30 am respectively. The unofficial category is the 1M run.

I had no preparation for the said run at all - and had already resigned myself to walking for the duration of the whole race. On the other hand, Berns and Irene will be seriously running in the 10km category, as they've been participating in races prior to this one. Leo, Liza and the two Jerry's of our association, like myself will be going 5km - somewhat suspecting that we won't complete the whole path running.

Below is a map of the 5km run that we would be undertaking.
It was interesting to find so many of my peers and past classmates in the location, all taking part of the occasion. None of my ex-crushes though, FYI.

Armed with my iPod, already set on my "Make Me Happy" playlist, I felt the music pumping me up with energy. Promptly at 6.15, the 5km race was given a gun shot. It was a tortoise-like start as the runners slowly moved past the starting line, but after a few seconds of slow progress, the run has officially begun. Some began with a proud quick sprint, others with a steady jog, others still, just walked.

My first song for the run was Usher's OMG, just to keep me high. I began overtaking a couple of people, jogging happily, trying to keep myself oblivious to the fact that I was going to drain myself tired. The iPod was a great help, as I used it to determine the length of time I should be jogging. Three songs of jogging before I can reward myself with one song worth of walking. After a few more songs later, I was doing half-song jogging and whole-song walking.

The weather was extra cooperative, as the sun never really peeped out of the clouds - never attempted to barrage us with its glorious waves of heat and shine.

I caught sight of one of my classmates, Mark, in the crowd and began to chase him until I finally caught up. We ended up chatting most of the walk-run back, mostly about his upcoming wedding. As we neared the finish line, we began to run again more passionately this time, as we were about to end our almost hour long exercise. The finish line though was the downer, as we had to fall in line (which took quite a while) to have our numbers noted down.

This was the result of my first ever run this year (2nd run in my entire life). I'm in 575th place out of the 1651 5km participants. Not bad, as I'm in the upper 35% of the ones who finished.
Although I am not sure when my next run will be, I thoroughly enjoyed myself - thinking that the mind can really do wonders when you challenge yourself to achieve something.

For those who'd like to check out the results of the Chiang Kai Shek Run, click here.

Note: All photos, except my number and shirt, were grabbed from the Chiang Kai Shek Alumni website and Facebook pages.

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