8000 places in this year Shape Run 2009 was snapped up in 42 hours. My SHAPE running kakis as usual, waited until Sunday to sign up, only to be notified that all the places have been taken up.
With Wei, my SIL, pregnant and my friends not running, I was a lone figure this morning as I waited among the 5km runners for the race to start. It was a lonly feeling, as groups of women, colleagues and friends, chatted excitedly around me. I felt so deserted.
It was a bad morning. I had only 4 hours of sleep last night, having attended a concert that ended almost close to midnight. (not that I’m complaining about that, since the tickets cost me $141 pax, I wanted to make it worth.) It was also that time of the month where water retention is a problem and I’m not just complaining about the bloating feeling.
I had a brand new Nike pink jersey which I should have washed first to season it, a brand new pair of socks that was too thin and a brand new pair of running shoes that hadn’t been tested. Aiya, it’s only 5km, no need to worry so much, I told myself.
Pre-run jitters are very common and I get that when I run 20km. The most obvious being the perpetual high-tide feeling that does not go away regardless of how often I visit the loo before the start of the race. Then, there is the usual uncomfortable feeling with the running bra, or my shorts, or my shoes laces that seem too tight, then too loose. Thus, I’m amazed at some girls who can run with caps, sunglasses, MP3 players in one hand, handphones gangling from the necks, water belts and one with a map. (It’s true, no exaggeration.)
This year’s route is different form the previous years. The run starts at the 106 bus terminal just after Millinia Walk, turn left past the Flyer, through an new road towards Kallang basin, pass Concourse, Gateway, u-turn at Suntec and back the same way. I had not been running for some time and I could feel the strain in my knees, which fortunately improved as my body warmed up.
Along the way, men with kids cheered their wives. As I made my way back, I was happy to see my timing of 33.33min, not much different from previous years, although I had wanted to go below 30 mins. Mike was at the ending point, together with all the other cheering men, all armed with cameras. This is the only race which I’m greeted by so many men as I run towards the finishing line. Not a bad feeling. Perhaps that accounts for the popularity (aside from the goodie bags).
Instead of a finishing medal, I was rewarded with a Nike bangle. On the inner cover of the box was printed "What’s amazing isn’t that you finished. What’s amazing is that you had the courage to start."
Ladies, anyone to join me next year?