“What’s one word to describe KOKK?”, I was asked upon arriving at the finish line.
“EVIL”. Just pure evil.
“It’s the simple things in life that are the most extraordinary.”
But injuries are not to be taken lightly,
You just have to run wisely,
As long as you arrive safely.
I registered for the 3rd edition of King of Kampung Kemensah (KOKK) right after last year’s attempt of King of Sungai Lembing (KOSL), wanting to try out all Team Pacat’s ‘King series’.
‘Try out’. Yeah, sure, why not? Or so it seems.
Fresh from Route 68 84km road run,
Treatment and rehab have yet begun.
But training has to be done,
The KOKK trails are to be going to be ‘fun’.
Thing is, I didn’t know how ‘evil’ the terrains of KOKK was going to be, not reading any reviews or heed to any calls of tale-tellings; just keeping in mind on the info given by the organizer, making sure all the necessary gears are in order and be mindful about the safety concerns, and some soundly reminders from my support crew.
And then, race day arrived.
I was reminded to put all the nerves aside.
‘Just run the way we trained’, I was advised.
‘And make sure you survived’.
We the 50km-ers were let go into the wild at 6.30am. With heavy rains and thunderstorms days earlier, ‘expect the unexpected’, we were told.
I might have only just ran a few ultra trail events, but KOKK was nothing like I’ve ever done before.
We needed to crawl up steep hills which were killers,
As we crossed a few (strong, deep) rivers.
Sharp, thorn-filled branches gave me the jitters,
And just had to succumb to them blood-sucking snappers!
With strict cut-off time at the U-turn, trails that seemed to lead to nowhere, never-ending hills, legs that seem to waddle in deep mud, body that feels like a tonne – if I’d listen to the head telling me to stop and give up, instead of the heart whispering hope is always alive and just keep on at it – I’d never finish anything or get what I want.
Seeing the determination on the runners,
I marveled at their wonders.
Aided by the cheers of the volunteers,
Lessened all my quivers.
You can achieve anything, when you get the best kind of support. Even when your mind played tricks on you and dampened the believe you have in yourself.
In the end, I got to the finish line.
All I wanted to do was to again see the dearest one of mine.
My heart is filled with love and shine,
I was the first runner-up, as the Al-Mighty defined.
Thank you to Team Pacat and the awesome volunteers and marshals, the sponsors, the support crew, and the fellow-minded runners.
You guys, did great!
- lost a toe nail (again, and it just grew after last year’s KOSL, where I got 5th place);
- pacat (leeches) bite marks – how very aptly-named organiser;
- deep skin cuts open thanks to some sharp bamboo;
- some scars right below the eye, being poked by protruding branches;
- sore ass, sore legs, sore feet, sore arms;
- and now feeling like the whole body is crushed by a truck.
But was it worth it? Heck yeah!