Today’s long run was similar to the route as per previous week, i.e from MF Clubhouse to East Coast Park. However, instead of u-turning at B1 carpark, we headed further down towards Big Splash in order to increase the total distance to about 32-33km.
It was a cloudy morning and was drizzling when we were about to begin our run at 630am. I started at an easy pace of 6min”/km with junior Yvonne and Stella. The guys, Trevor, Jackie, Jimmy, Ken, Melvin who started the run slightly behind us, overtook us in no time. The first 8km of the run passed quickly. Yvonne, Stella and I managed to catch up with the guys when they stopped at the traffic lights near Esplanade.
As soon as the traffic lights turned green, Jackie and Trevor continued running at a faster pace. Stella and I increased our pace and tried to keep up with them. They were still slightly ahead when we reached Nicoll Highway, but fortunately Stella and I caught up again with the two guys when they stopped at the traffic light near Kallang stadium. Still feeling good, I told Stella that I would also do 33km today with her. Stella and I followed Jackie’s pace as we ran towards ECP. Checked my pace which was about 5:15″/km when we entered ECP. At B1 carpark, we saw Derrick running out. Ran past Big Splash and we tell ourselves that will be our break after we u-turn at 16.5km.
As soon as the Garmin reads 16.5km, we u-turn as planned. Not long after, we saw Trevor running towards us. A couple of minutes later, we saw Weisian, followed by Zhilei. Finally, we were back at Big Splash and we pop into 7 Eleven to buy some isotonic drinks. Weather was hot and it was indeed refreshing to have icy cold Pocari down our throats. After topping up our bottles, we continued our run to carpark B1 and make a quick stop for the toilet. Though tired, we tried to maintain about the same pace as we exited ECP.
Ran past the petrol kiosk and there we saw Zhilei and another runner taking their break. They must have caught up when we took a break at Big Splash. On the Nicoll Highway, Jackie seemed to be getting faster and faster. Stella and I tried our best to keep up or at least keep him within sight. By the time, we reached the Nicoll Highway station, Stella has dropped back and was a distance behind. I tried to close up the distance between myself and Jackie. Surely, we are doing sub 5:15″/km pace now, I thought.
Finally, I caught up with him when he stopped at the traffic lights near Esplanade. Phew! A chance to rest, finally. However, the lights turned green soon enough and I was off chasing after him again. Psych myself to hang on to the pace and think of the McDonalds (along Anson Road) where we intend to take our second break.
We were welcomed by the cool air as soon as we stepped into the fast food restaurant. The service crew was very kind to offer us water and also top up my bottle with ice and water. Stepped out of McDonalds and we saw Stella running past at the opposite side of the road. Jackie and I finished the cup of water and we set off to finished the last 5km of the run. It was especially motivating to see Stella and Trevor ahead and I was hoping to be able to catch up with them before we reached the clubhouse.
Jackie and I have a chance to take a breather when a traffic light turned red before we could cross. However, because of the stop, we lost sight of Stella and Trevor. It was only until Henderson Road that we caught sight of Trevor who was already running up Henderson Rd. Jackie and I ran a little harder up the slope to try to close up the gap.
Though we did not manage to catch up with Trevor in the end, I was still quite pleased with the long run. I was glad to have that last bit of energy to push myself up Henderson Rd. A few months back I would have thought it was quite impossible to run at sub 5:15″km pace for my long runs. The run today proved me otherwise. You never know unless you try. I’m fortunate to have Jackie and Stella running with me today. They motivated me a lot. Suddenly, long runs aren’t so scary anymore. I am beginning to enjoy it. =)