It was reported in The Straits Times, Singapore’s main newspaper, that an experienced male marathon runner collapsed and died at the 11km mark while competing in a full marathon last weekend. He was 45 years old.
At the start point for the half marathon (21km), the starter’s horn blared. I begin to pound the road. I see a sea of fresh faces, young and old, fit and not-so-fit eagerly rushing to reach the finishing line.
At the 11km mark, the fresh faces becomes tired, huffing and puffing, some walked, some puke and some gave up.
I have completed numerous run events ranging from 5km sprints to full marathons. Anyone who have participated in run races and completed will tell you the punishment your body takes to keep you mentally and physically alert to complete. It is brutal.
So why run?
In a country like Singapore, almost every weekend there is a run race. Most of us are weekend warriors. We trained on weekends. Maybe throw in a few runs in the late evenings on a weekday for the ‘feel good’ factor. For most of us, we run to keep a healthy lifestyles.
Many believe to complete a run race all you need is stamina. I disagree. Besides the stamina, you need to build your mental, core and endurance strengths and a good pair of real run shoes. And, yes, don’t be a weekend warrior.
Train regularly and race.
Mr Martynn Koh, a fellow marathoner, RIP