Monday, February 21, 2011

Surviving Marathon 2011

I would like to thank all my friends who have been praying, or otherwise concerned about my well-being regarding my running in the HK Marathon 2011.  I completed the full marathon in 4 hours and 50+ minutes, my best time by far.

I missed the marathon last year.  So this is the first time I got to run on the Stonecutters Island Bridge (昂船洲大橋), which links Tsing Yi Island (青衣島) to Stonecutters Island (昂船洲), spanning the Rambler Channel (藍巴勒海峽).    

It was said the Sharks were running again this time, but I did not see them.  I do have some photos of sharks in my postings two years ago.  But I did see a bunny this time.  I also saw at least two blind runners with their guide-runners.  Amazing people, all running the full marathon. 

Coming out of the Western Harbour Tunnel (西區隧道) was the hardest part.  My legs were already threatening to cramp before I entered the tunnel from the Kowloon side.  But I wanted to keep running, hoping that it will go away.  Surviving the foul air inside the tunnel and climbing up from the bottom of the tunnel to the exit was grueling enough.  Immediately upon seeing the light again at the exit on the Hong Kong side, however, we had to climb up the elevated highway.  I almost stopped, but eventually forced myself to slowly run up the slope.   I was so happy I texted my wife at that point. 

Then I saw and heard the cheerleaders from our university in a multi-storey car-park across from the highway, which gave me a second wind - for about 5 minutes.  Soon afterwards, around Admiralty, and about 3 km from the finish, the cramps in my thighs were so painful I had to stop running, to try to walk it off.  I was half limping and half running the rest of the way.  For the last 100 meters, it was essentially the cheering that carried us across. 

But I survived.  At the finish, I saw again Mr. Leung Yiu Chung (梁耀忠).  Two years ago we finished at the same time, just like this year.  I respect his efforts to speak for the underprivileged, and his perseverance.  So I had another photo taken with him.

I slept the whole afternoon afterwards. 




Kobe said...

I really admire your energy. I never have the guts to join such events.

StephenC said...

Thanks. It is a good way to build up some stubbornness. :-)