2009 calendar updated!!!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Chin Woo Biathlon 2008

Date: 14-12-2008
Venue: Chin Woo Stadium, Kuala Lumpur
Participants: Fairul, Shahrizal
Supporter: Along

(Shahrizal version)

PROUD but embarrassed. Proud because I finally convinced myself to enter a biathlon event (swim and run), but embarrassed because I only covered half the swimming distance.

Together with my brother in law Fairul, we faced the challenge of the Chin Woo Biathlon 2008 at the Chin Woo Swimming Pool, last Sunday.We had to swim 800 meters and run seven kilometers.

Actually my participation was a last minute decision, both by the organisers and myself. I was only informed about my slot in the veterans category on Saturday night. My sister, Suriati submitted my name last month, but was told then that I was on standby.

I assumed it would stay that way until I received a call from a Chin Woo official by the name of Lester, saying that the organisers would give a slot to me if I want to participate. I didn’t give an answer straight away, instead I told him I’ll try to make it. Together with Along, I would have attended the event anyway to support Fairul.

On the morning of the event, I decided to bring along the attire for the swim and run, but still haven’t decide whether to take part or not.
After parking the car in front of the Chin Woo Stadium, me, Along and Fairul went to the registration center near the swimming pool. Only then and there I told myself: “Just do it la, Shah. Give it a try. Gung-ho!” I paid RM40 and was given the bib and t-shirt. The number 373 was later written on my arms and legs.

The competitors were released in batches (or waves as they call it). Swimming is the first discipline. I was worried because I had not been swimming seriously since 1980. My one and only swimming session with Fairul was five days before the event, and even then I did just a few laps.

Once the swim event started, I was clearly destined not to finish it. My lungs feel as if it was about to burst, the chest were tight, my shoulders and arms were hurting, and I barely managed to stay afloat.

After doing 400 meters or 16 laps (25 meter for every lap), I was ready to give up. I was breathless and had no energy left. Almost all my rivals have left the pool and the next batch was already on standby.

Sensing I was in trouble, a competitor named Omar who was supposed to swim in my lane asked me: “Can you continue?” I replied wearily: “Cannot la... too tired.” He asked the time keeper how far have I swam. “400 meters.” Then he said to the timekeeper: “Let him continue running” and surprisingly he said okay.

I stared at him in disbelief and asked: “Really aaa... can I continue my run?” “Sure,” he said. Omar and Along (who later said I looked disoriented in the pool) then proceed to pull me out. I could hardly stand straight, I was so exhausted. I was asked to relax for a few minutes before running.

After gulping some isotonic drink and wearing my shoes and running vest, I stood up and started running, initially like a drunken person. My legs were heavy and my head was spinning slightly. Only after several minutes was I able to revert to proper running mode.

The run consists of three loops, from Chin Woo Stadium to Jalan Changkat Stadium, Jalan Stadium, Jalan Maharajalela, Jalan Hang Tuah, Jalan Hang Jebat and back to the stadium.

I felt so relieved to see the finishing line at the stadium entrance, and after my exhausting experience at the pool, to be garlanded with a finisher’s medal is well worth it.

Finally, I would like to say a big thank you to the organisers for letting me continue despite not completing the swim. Can I be called a biathlete now?

(Fairul Version)

Pagi tu mendung & sejuk sbb hujan renyai2 malam tadi. Sampai di Stadium Chin Woo, jumpa Alang & Along. Diorang sampai dulu. Alang bagitau, Mr Lesther called last nite, bleh muat lagi sorang. So Alang decided to take part.

We went straight to the pool. Registered ourselves. Get them to write our number on our body. Rasa mcm masuk triathlon plak. Tak sabar nak start my 1st tri next year.

The race will be ran 4 waves. I’m in the 4th wave(the last wave) & Alang in 3rd wave. The race started with 1st wave, the junior categories. Lots of cute kids took part. I was surprise, they’re very good & confident in swimming. Some are doing freestyle, and some doing breast stroke.

Kene tunggu setiap wave habis, barulah bleh start the next wave. Tunggu punya tunggu, akhirnya wave Alang pun tiba. Alang start slowly, breast stroke. While waiting for Alang’s wave to finish, I’m preparing all my transition stuff. Towel, running shoes, race belt & running necklace.

Put all my stuff at my swimming lane, and started jump into the water. Terkejut sbb my lane was the deepest part of the pool. Ahhh.. lantak. Tak kisah nyer. Cuma satu masalah, the pool floor takde lane markings. So susah nak swim straight nnti. Takut berlanggar dgn org satu lane. Done 100m of warm-up swim.

The race started. I swim slow & steady but maintain my pace till the end. Peserta beside me laju. He lead me about 100m camtu. Sebelum final lap, the time keeper knocked my head with the kickboard & shouted “Final lap!!!”. I swim faster. Wanna finish the swim fast, cos getting bored already.

Finished the swim in 19mins, climbed up the pool, lap muka sket, wore my shoes, my necklace, drank some 100plus(thanks Along) & wore the race belt. Started the run slowly cos still have the dizzy feeling. “Mabuk air”.

Selepas 200m, the dizzy dah hilang. I have to do 3 loops of running, to make it 7km. Lotsa hill climb. But the feeling that morning was good. Maybe the weather was not hot & my tri-suit was still wet, made me comfortable during my run.

The 1st lap was good. Took my 1st band, & continue my 2nd lap. 2nd lap went very good. Manage to overtook some runners. Met Alang while doing his last lap. Took my 2nd band and continue to my last lap. Managed to maintain my pace from the start of the run. Managed to do a non-stop running also. Grabbed my 3rd band and headed back to Chin Woo. Try to sprint during the steep hill-climb at the Chin Woo, but can’t do it. Just maintain my pace. Finished the race in 1:02. 18 mins behind my target time (1:20).

That’s all for now.

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