23 December 2007

Farewell 2007, Welcome 2008

Honestly, I am glad that 2007 is over. It was a year of big changes in life as well as disappointment in terms of my running. Firstly, I got married hence finding the time to run was a bit difficult (we were in long-distance relationship previously, hence I had freedom to run). Secondly, we've moved back to Singapore which is really not a conducive place for running (humid, crowded, lack of races). Thirdly, after 3 years of consistent training, it seems that my running performance has plateaued. My mileage and PB history so far:

2005: 3575k, 14 real PBs+ 8 first race PBs

2006:, 3700k, 7 PB

2007: 3300-3400k, 1 PB

All in all, I had little to cheer about in terms of running.......

I've been thinking a lot about my running plan for 2008. When I returned to Singapore in October, I thought I would solely focus on 5k/10k/21k since marathon training would be a humungus challenge given the heat/humidity, new job, and lack of running places. However, since then I have had a mood swing.

Firstly, I didn't fare too badly from the weather judging from my last two races (not great time, but okay). With more time, I think I should be able to tolerate the conditions better. Perhaps I should treat this as 'heat training' and hopefully I can perform better when I do 'cool weather' races. Secondly, there are possibly no 5k/10k races in Singapore until April or May next year. How motivating is that?

I've been searching the web for races in the region. Given my measly mileage in the last 3 months, I think a marathon in 1Q is definitely not a viable option. 2Q is more realistic - a couple friends from Perth will be running Canberra Marathon in April, but I am unsure whether I'll be in a racing shape 3.5 months from now. Domestically, there are two new marathons, namely Sundown Marathon (night) in May and Lion City Marathon in June, but I doubt I can race to the best of my ability in humid conditions.

The most viable option looks like Gold Coast Marathon in early July. It seems to have all the tick in the boxes - it is fast and flat, with a decent field size (not small but not gigantic), pacer group availability, good weather, and a nice place to go for a short holiday with my wife. It is also a good 6 months from now. I can simply do base building for a couple of months before jumping into marathon-specific training for the next 3 months and then into taper.

Here are my tentative (but not complete) races for the first half of 2008. Once the local running calendar is out, I might do a couple of track races (3k, 5k) such as Allcomers Meet, SAA road relay etc.

30 Mar: 10k/21k as part of Kuala Lumpur Marathon

The probability of doing this one is probably 80-90% as KL is about 1hr by air from Singapore. Probably will do 10k or 21k to gauge fitness shape (albeit a hilly course)

31 May: 'marathon training run' or relay as part of Sundown Marathon

This is a new marathon/ultra to be held at night time in Singapore. I'd say the probability of doing this one is about 60-70%. If I do it, I might run

the relay (two-person team) or the full 42k as a slow training run - five weeks before Gold Coast.

8 June: Saucony Passionrun 15K

The probability of doing this run is about 50-60%. Basically I will use either this race or Phuket HM in the followng week to gauge my marathon goal shape.

15 June: Laguna Phuket Half-Marathon

If I don't do the above, probably I will run this one because we can combine this with a holiday. Since this is 3 weeks out before Gold Coast, I might either run the HM at all-out to test my marathon shape or simply at marathon-goal pace for pace familiarization.

6 July: Gold Coast Marathon

Barring any injuries or physical/mental breakdown, this would be the GOAL race for the first half of 2008.


Clown said...

Sling, great to see that you have plans for another Marathon. I would love to do GC sometime but doesn't really work with my work schedule at this stage unfortunately. Hopefully we can do Boston together 2009 after we both qualify in 08.

All the best

Tekko said...

Why don't u go for the KL Pacesetter in January? There are more races in KL than Sg and a lot of them are 10km races. KL is just a short 4 hrs drive up from Sg

trailblazer777 said...

Hope things are great! in 2008 for you, and you have a better year!

Peterhorse said...

Like the 2008 plans! Good luck, happy training.
Re: your question on GCM logistics. Yes Pelazzo Versace is a good place to stay (especially being 5 star and the top rated place on the coast). It is about 1.5-2k walk from start line, and on the opposite side of the Nerang river (you will need to cross the bridge). Actually, the start of the marathon goes right past the turn off to the hotel. You won't get much closer in reality, not at that standard anyway. if you go to www.wotif.com and search for Gold coast hotels, you can bring up a map view...then do same for GCMarathon site for the course etc. Hope to be there as well!

by7 said...


you are victim of the "marriage/relocation/job change/heat" syndrome. It affected me once I moved to China, with a new job and a newly married wife.
It affected me for almost 2 years and my HM time plunged from 1h20 to barely able to finish one in 1h40/45'.
It is a very vicious syndrome because the life seems spiraling very fast around you and the time/motivation to go out an run is dwindling.
My personal suggestion:
- carve out a fixed time for training every day. It must be in a slot of time that will not be affected by work/family commitment, etc. My suggestion is to go early in the morning, before work. It may be tough at the beginning, but you would also partially avoid the heat.
- the Asian heat is terrible and sucks a lot of energy, so you have to run much slower than you think.
- do not feel that you already reached your maximum potential, you only trained seriously for 2 years after being "couch potato". So you still have at least 4/5 years of improvement ahead of you

naz runnaz said...

Hello Sling Runner,

I found u hv left a comment in my blog race post.Thanks! U r running well also.
I think in 30 March (KL marathon), based ur performance...i thnik u should do
full marathon..

U can check that course map last year..i think that same route this year