Putrajaya Night Marathon 2017 Preview by Happy Runner + Essential Marathon Tips
Running a Full Marathon is so tough because it PUSHES our body and mind to its limits, and it EXPOSES any of a runner’s known or UNKNOWN weaknesses. On the upside, the feeling of elation and euphoria derived from completing each Full Marathon is UNBEATABLE and ADDICTIVE.
On the Organiser’s side, the task of staging a quality FM event is often a BITTERSWEET and HERCULEAN task which is fraught with unseen pitfalls, and it will EXPOSE to the World, the organisational skills and EXPERIENCE of any Race Director and their Crew.
In this article, I want to share some of my favourite MARATHON TIPS, as well as give a plug for the one and only PUTRAJAYA NIGHT MARATHON which will enjoy her 7th Edition on 4th November 2017.
I want to also highlight the Sports Event Management TWENTY FIRST CENTURY SPORTS (TFCS) in the positive development of the local running event scene.
Firstly, let me point out that I don’t consider myself a prolific Marathoner, and if my memory serves me right, I have only participated in 14 or so FMs over a period of 7 years. However, I fondly cherish the experience of every FM because each one has helped me become a better person, and better runner’s. The valuable experience of completing every marathon through your own Blood, SWEAT, and Tears cannot be replicated elsewhere, nor can be taught in a classroom.
Although NO two MARATHON are ever the same, I have discovered that there are a few basic rules which will help me Perform At My Best, and thence, enhance my Full Marathon experience as follows :-
- RESPECT THE DISTANCE : For newbies, you must prepare well for your race by Training adequately, eating nutritiously, and make sure you have the proper running gear to endure the FM hardship.
- TRAIN OR PAIN : Over a period of 3 months, one should steadily increase one’s WEEKLY running mileage with several 10-15 km runs and one 25-30 km Long Slow Distance until one-two weeks before the race to taper off to rest your body.
- SUIT UP APPROPRIATELY : Make sure you invest in a decent pair of Running Shoes to suit your Foot Type and Running Style. Wear proper running attire (namely, Running Best, Shorts and Socks) which are both functional and COMFORTABLE. Most importantly, test out all your running gear BEFORE race day, so you can make any adjustments if necessary and leave nothing to chance.
- STOP CHAFING : Never forget to swipe petroleum jelly or Vaseline on sensitive and friction points on your body such as the nipples, the waistline, inner crutch and thighs when you plan to run for more than 3 hours.
- EAT FOR FUEL : As part of your training regime, you should increase your intake of Vegetables and Fruits, and cut down on Meat and Processed Foods. Two days before race day, you should eat slow digesting carbohydrates like pasta to store more SLOW-RELEASING energy food.
- DRINK UP : Stay hydrated by continuously sipping 2-3 Litres of Drinking Water per day on top of any other beverages. STOP and DRINK at every available Water Station to prevent feeling thirsty which is a sure sign of dehydration.
- ELECTROLYTES & BITES : Around the 35 km mark, it is common for runners to hit the proverbial “wall” which is when the body has depleted all of its energy source and SHUTS DOWN accordingly. To avoid the crippling effect of this nasty phenomena, Runners need to carry and consume several packets of energy gels and bars for timely replenishing of depleted energy and electrolytes.
- STAY IN TOUCH : I strongly recommend that you carry your phone with you, and keep the emergency number of event organiser just in case. Switch off the phone to save battery. Plus bring along some cash with you as a backup plan.
- GIVE TO RECEIVE : Runners are well known for looking after each other’s backs, and our support for each other is what makes our community stronger. Therefore, don’t ignore a runner who is stranded by the roadside and clearly experiencing a difficulty or has fallen because it may take an official Crew member to assist them. Just ask them, “Can I help you?”. You never know when you may need a stranger’s help in the future, and reciprocate the gesture.
- WHAT MOVES YOU : Deciding to participate in a Full Marathon and enduring to the finish line before Cut Off Time is 90% Mental Challenge. To overcome our natural fear when faced with this gruelling test, you should run for a SOLID REASON which will help motivate you to finish the race whenever you feel like giving up. Runners use all kinds of MOTIVATION to keep them fired up, and this could range from something as simple as a meaningful Motivational Quote (e.g. “Quitters Never Win; Winners Never Quit”), to a far-reaching Motivation such as running to raise money for a good cause.
- FIND THE RIGHT PARTNER : Running alone can be tedious and boring, so you should consider finding a matching Running Buddy who can share in the triumph and tribulations of your Marathon Journey. As for me, I always bring along my Aftershokz Trekz Titanium music earphones in order to listen to inspirational and upbeat music during races.
- YOUR BEST MAN : Choosing the right FM organiser is like choosing your best man. You must find the right one who is not only RELIABLE, but UNDERSTANDS and ANTICIPATES your needs too. How disappointing would it be if your wedding’s best man forgot your ring at the altar, or equally disastrous, if an event organiser did not provide enough water for the runners.
ICONIC PUTRAJAYA NIGHT MARATHON
My Virgin Full Marathon was the PNM 2012, and it was a miracle that I completed it 3 minutes under the 6 hour cut-off time because I simply did not have a clue of what I was getting myself into. But what really stuck with me on that fateful night the most were the amazing sights of the great Human Spirit in action, and I will never forget how touchingly helpful the organiser and crew were in encouraging and providing for all the marathoners as they ran, walked and crawled to the Finish Line.
I remember being made to feel that I was important even though I was just a newbie scumbag who was ill-prepared for my first bite of the FM cherry. In fact, the Team of Twenty First Century Sports made every single runner feel that they were important, and everything was being done to ensure that each of our individual journey was going to be a memorable. Making every runner feel that they mattered was ridiculously difficult when you consider the many different demands of each runner.
It was this sense of belonging to a bigger running family which encouraged me to participate in running events until today, and whenever times are tough, I will always look back on that epic night to renew my hope and faith in the Running Community.
So, I will DEDICATE my coming Putrajaya Night Marathon to all the good people of Twenty First Century Sports (TFCS) who have kept the fire burning literally for the Last Runner in Putrajaya since 2010 when it all started.
Back then, Putrajaya on weekends was an empty ghost town, and PNM was the first major running event to collaborate with Putrajaya Municipality when nobody else would bother considering Putrajaya as a viable sports venue. Therefore, TFCS were the pioneers who were instrumental in bringing exposure and runners to this once sleepy town. So successful was the publicity that today, it is extremely difficult, and expensive to book Putrajaya for a sports venue!
I really appreciate the efforts made by TFCS not only in Putrajaya, but over the decades to help build the foundation for the present field of runners and other new running event organisers.
The unmatched experience and skills of the TFCS Team instill confidence and hope for runners like me, that running events will be upheld to the proper ETHICAL and QUALITY standards which all Malaysia can be proud of.
Initially, I was worried about the future of PNM when I heard that there was no major sponsor in 2016, until today. However, after a heart-to-heart discussion with the top management of Twenty First Century Sports, I realised that Sponsors come and go, but passionate and genuine organisers who can stage a world-class marathon are rare indeed, and they will always have the lasting support of the Running Community.
So, I was overjoyed to hear from TFCS, even without a major sponsor, that they are fully committed to giving the Runners a phenomenal marathon experience as usual come 4th November 2017. So, far we are 12,000 strong. Will you be joining us to continue this important MALAYSIAN MARATHON Tradition? If you have missed this year’s boat or if you cannot physically be there, I still hope that you can support us in true One Malaysian spirit…
Registration is CLOSED but you can still stay in touch http://www.twentyfirstcenturysports.com
To the best of my knowledge, all of the information provided herein is accurate at the time of publishing and the views expressed are based on my own personal opinions and findings, and they don’t necessarily reflect the views of the Product Manufacturer, Event Organiser or any Third Party unless explicitly specified otherwise.
About The Author
Gus is the Founder of Running Toons and a HIIT Fitness Coach. As a freelance WRITER, he has contributed numerous insightful articles to The Star newspaper, Running Malaysia magazine, Cycling Malaysia magazine, Cycling Evolution magazine, Swim Bike Run magazine and more. LIKE Happy Runner for RUNNING UPDATES, Gus Rider for CYCLING NEWS, Gus Ghani for SPORTS INFOTAINMENT and FOLLOW gusghani @IG for LIFESTYLE.
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