Race Review: Bangkok Midnight Marathon 2019 (Full Marathon) by Neyton Tan

Few days before I stumbled across this Bangkok Midnight Marathon ad on Facebook, my wife told me that she doesn’t mind going for a weekend trip to Bangkok for shopping and massage. When I saw it, I thought it was perfect timing! It would add nicely to our long list of runcation (or tri-cation, if it’s a thing) this year.

Race Expo

The race expo was located just within Makkasan BTS – Airport Rail Link and it was very convenient to go there by train. There were not that many people when we came to collect the race pack. Everything was prompt and we got our bags in no time. Interestingly, when we received our bags, we were asked to choose A, B, or C sticker which indicates our running pace (fast, medium, slow). There’s no clear indication of what is considered fast/medium/slow pace (in terms of mins/km) so it’s based on each individual perception. I chose A and wondered how this method would turn out on the race day.

There were sponsor booths, shoes and apparels booths, stage for games and lucky draw announcement, and food vendors at the expo. The best part of the expo is the shoe spa where you can bring your running shoes for cleaning. The results seemed to be really good and the service was fast. It was too bad I didn’t bring my running shoes then. 

Time-lapse of the Expo from start to end


The full marathon started at 1 am. Considering the roadblock, I decided to take Grab Bike at 12midnight to start point and it seemed to be a good decision. It only took me 5 mins to get there! It was cheap, fast and no communication required to the driver as the destination was already on the map. There were already a lot of people in each pen (A, B, C) doing their warm-up exercise. The Thais do take their warm-up seriously. There were few pacer groups with time splits already body-stickered to their arms (good idea). The race started on time and surprisingly, the A/B/C ‘self-decide’ pace turned out pretty well. Runners in my pen had a relatively similar pace and no human traffic jam.

Overall, the route was good – big roads, plenty fairy lights at the streets, passing by quite a few of landmarks along the way which I never knew they exist, plenty of hydration points and the distance was quite accurate. It was a flat route with few slopes heading up the highway. The highway was a long stretch out and back, so there was nothing else to see here. Z monster was the main concern here, and luckily for me, I was running with a Thai runner where there were no conversations but just rhythmic cadence for both of us along the route. Once we made the U-turn, he picked up speed and I continued to keep to my pace alone.

It was then that I was hit by ITB flare and decided to slow down knowing that I was well before my target sub 4-hour pace. Once I head down the highway back to the streets I knew that it was the home stretch. The only minor setback was there were few junctions at the latter half of the route which was not completely closed to motorists and runners were occasionally stopped to give way to the cars and bikes. Weather was fine, not hot nor humid though I can’t say it was cooling considering it was 1 – 5 am. There were zero spectators throughout the route so not much for ambience but again, it was a midnight marathon. There were tons of photographers along the route and I wonder how many of them were official photographers. Camera flashes were non-stop during the first and last 10km so I tried to keep my best smile always while kept pushing for the run.

Post Race

After crossing the finish line, I was directed to a booth where the volunteer scanned my bib and gave me a print out of my timing and rank. I finished 8th out of 132 foreigner male category and 75th out of 2053 male finisher for male marathon category! My finish time is far from my personal best but the rank is good enough that I am entitled to get cute monkey plushie given to the first 100th finisher. I realized that there are different animal plushie given for different category as my wife got an elephant plushie for finishing 100th in female half marathon category. Interesting concept I must say to give a gift (though small) to motivate participants to do better.

The finisher area looks like a huge expo with many food vendors, photo backgrounds, sponsor booths, medical and massage tents. Finisher area for the full marathon and other distance categories are separated with almost equal size. I have never seen so much food provided after a race. Pad thai, noodle soup, dumplings, chocolate milk, Thai milk tea, you name it. They come from different vendors with a separate tent and queue for each vendor.

Technically, you can only choose one as the volunteer ticked the bib to indicate food has been collected but some of them are free for all. I went for a few rounds of food (who eats so much after running a marathon? I do!) and walked around the finisher area while waiting for the plushie collection time.


It’s pleasant to be able to enjoy Bangkok night view with no traffic jam, something that you’ll never get to see in the city centre of Bangkok unless you run at wee hours. Overall, it was a well-organized race, fuss-free trip, relatively low budget and no leave required. Also, if you’re into ranking, you might have a shot to the podium here. Will I be back? Sure, why not!


40,000 Runners Turn Dataran Into Sea of Blue For KLSCM2019

KUALA LUMPUR, Sunday, 29 September 2019: Dataran Merdeka was awash in blue when 40,000 runners took part in the Kuala Lumpur Standard Chartered Marathon (KLSCM) 2019 today. The 11 th edition of the premier distance running event in Malaysia also saw YB Syed Saddiq, Minister of Youth and Sports, make his debut in the event by participating in the Half Marathon category. Also present were YB Khalid Samad, Minister of Federal Territories and YB, Dr. Ong Kian Ming, Deputy Minister of Trade and Industries, who also took part in the Half Marathon.

Contributing to the record participation numbers was one of the largest Full Marathon fields seen in an event in Malaysia when more than 13,000 runners took part in the category. An equally impressive 12,500 runners ran in the Half Marathon, making two of the longer distance categories the most well-represented, which is a testimony to the growing popularity of distance running in the country.

Victor Kipchirchir, from Kenya, who was making his debut appearance at KLSCM won the Full Marathon Men’s Open category in a time of 2:19:41 to take home USD17,500 while the Full Marathon Women’s Open category was won by Gladys Jepkemoi Chemweno from Kenya in a time of 2:36:45 also earning USD17,500 in the process.

Kiprop Tonui from Kenya came in second in the Full Marathon Men’s Open with a time of 2:20:05 while Tallam James Cherutich, also from Kenya finished third in a time of 2:21:04. In the Full Marathon Women’s Open, defending champion Elizabeth Chepkanan Rumokol from Kenya had to settle for second place in a time of 2:41:48 while Ngigi Pauline from Kenya took third place with a time of 2:45:44.

The Full Marathon Malaysian Men’s category was a keenly contested affair as Muhaizar bin Mohamad and his compatriot in the Armed Forces Nik Fakaruddin bin Ismail went toe-to-toe for most of the race. KL SEA Games bronze medallist Muhaizar though broke away towards the end, managing to defend his title and in doing so won this category for an astonishing fifth consecutive time, finishing in 2:35:23. Nik Fakaruddin finished second in 2:40:31 while Fabian @ Osmond bin Daimon came in third in a time of 2:45:06. The Full Marathon Malaysian Women’s category saw Loh Chooi Fern defend her maiden win in KLSCM2018 in a time of 3:21:33 while Tho Siaw Khim clocked 3:29:42 to come in second and Yap Yee Ling got third place in a time of 3:30:50.

FM Open winner Kipchirchir was delighted with his maiden Kuala Lumpur Standard Chartered Marathon win. “It was a tough race as I have never run in this type of heat before but my preparation was good,” Kipchirchir said. “I am happy to be able to win in my first race in Kuala Lumpur and I hope to come back next year,” he continued.

Muhaizar was also thrilled to have retained his title, especially after the intense competition with training partner Nik Fakaruddin. “I think running and winning in KLSCM before gave me a slight advantage over the other competitors as I know what to expect and so made the right strategy,” he said. “This win will help boost my confidence ahead of the SEA Games in Manila in November and I hope to be able to bring back a medal,” he added.

Rainer Biemans, Project Director of KLSCM and Director of Dirigo Events, said “The 11th edition of KLSCM has proven to be an exciting two days that has seen some great competitions in our top categories, which has added to the lustre of our biggest event yet. It has also been and honour and a privilege having both YB Syed Saddiq and YB Dr. Ong Kian Ming participate in our Half Marathon, and my heartfelt thanks go out to them for supporting our event and I hope they enjoyed themselves out there today. We are also grateful for YB Khalid Samad’s presence and for giving out prizes”, he continued.

Syed Saddiq flagged off the Half Marathon category along with Abrar A. Anwar, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of title sponsor Standard Chartered Bank Malaysia before joining in the run.

Credit: Kuala Lumpur Standard Chartered Marathon 2019

“For someone who’s more a cyclist than a runner, that was pretty challenging! But crossing that finish line was extremely fulfilling and I’m really happy to have made it within the cut-off time. I can see now how participating in distance running events such as this can be tremendously rewarding so kudos to Dirigo Events, Standard Chartered Bank and to everyone else who had a hand in putting together this fantastic event,” said Syed Saddiq. “My congratulations as well to all the winners and to all who participated and achieved their running goals,” he continued.

Anwar. A. Abrar, MD and CEO of Standard Chartered Malaysia, who took part in yesterday’s Friendship Run as well, was delighted with the massive turnout over the two days and hoped the event would continue to attract the running masses for many more years to come.

“Being title sponsor for the last 11 years, Standard Chartered Malaysia is delighted that we’ve once again managed to successfully pull off this event with our biggest numbers to date.

From pioneering the concept of being the first running event to run through iconic landmarks in Kuala Lumpur, KLSCM has never stood still and has set the benchmark and gold standard for running events in Malaysia,” said Abrar.

Credit: Kuala Lumpur Standard Chartered Marathon 2019

While KLSCM is a competitive event, it has been built with a community focus at its core and that community element was brought to the fore this year when KLSCM’s Run For A Reason (RFAR) charity initiative raised its highest amount in terms of funds raised compared to previous years. RFAR is an integral component of KLSCM and this year, participating charities the National Cancer Society of Malaysia, Dignity for Children Foundation and Hospis Malaysia will benefit from over RM890,000 worth of funds raised by over 1,000 RFAR participants, together with the Corporate Challenge. “We are extremely happy to have raised a record amount under our RFAR charity banner and our sincere thanks go out to all involved who made this possible,” said Biemans.

The record numbers did not end there as the event also saw its largest number of running tourists as well when more than 1,900 from 49 countries arrived in Kuala Lumpur to take part in the iconic event. Add another 10,020 Malaysians who came from outside of Kuala Lumpur and Selangor to make it a particularly busy weekend for the city.

One particularly inspiring tourist was Chris Koch, a farmer, athlete, adventurer and motivational speaker who flew in from Canada to participate. Born without limbs, Chris has been travelling the world and participating in marathons to spread his “If I Can” message to as many people as possible in the hopes of motivating them to get the most out of their lives. Using a longboard to traverse the Full Marathon route, Chris took part in his eighth marathon on a third continent when he completed his marathon here. “I was prepared for the heat and humidity because I knew it would be way more than I’m used to, however, starting so early was different. On the course, other marathoners are usually so encouraging and supportive but here, they were even more so. That definitely has me wanting to come back for another,” Koch said.

KLSCM2019 began with the Kids Dash categories yesterday morning that saw another record when 1,000 children participated in the 1km and 3km categories. Both categories were expanded this year to encourage more children to participate and also saw speed categories introduced for both distances in a move to separate the competitive children from the fun runners.

For the first time, the 5km category was also held yesterday morning to allow for larger participation numbers today and incorporated the Friendship Run, meant to be a warm-up run for those taking part in the Full Marathon, as well as an opportunity for runners from around the world to meet and forge friendships.

Credit: Kuala Lumpur Standard Chartered Marathon 2019

Towards the end of the event, the KLSCM running community gathered at the Finish Line to cheer and provide moral support to the last runners to finish within the check-out time of 7:15 hours. These runners had given their all to finish the race and were given a rousing end replete with confetti blasts to coax them home within the required time.

The Kuala Lumpur Standard Chartered Marathon has grown year-on-year to become the most anticipated distance running event in Malaysia, where for the first time this year public registrations had to be balloted. The premier running event once again saw Standard Chartered Bank Malaysia returning as title sponsor, along with a host of returning and new sponsors, including Seiko, Under Armour, 100 Plus, Jaybird, TudungPeople, Banana Boat and Pacific Regency. The event is owned and organised by Dirigo Events with venue host Dewan Bandaraya Kuala Lumpur.

KLSCM is sanctioned and supported by the Malaysia Athletics Federation (MAF), Federal Territory Kuala Lumpur Athletic Federation (FTKLAA), International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) and Association of International Marathons, Distance Races (AIMS).

For more information about the event,
click here.


2017 SEA Games Medalist Clement Chow Tops At Inaugural Singapore National Triathlon Championship

Photo Credit: Orange Room

A week after Sebastian Vettel dethrone reigning Singapore F1 Champion Lewis Hamilton in Singapore, Singapore East Coast Park saw a surge of more 1500 local and foreign triathletes from 6 continents from Asia, Oceania, Africa, North and South America and Europe to race the lion city.

Singaporean male triathletes clean swept all 3 top sots at the Singapore National Triathlon Championship with 2017 SEA Games Medalist Clement Chow took the top spot with a time of 2 hours 5 minutes and 59 seconds ahead of Wille Loo and Aaron Lee who competed in 2 hours 6 minutes and 34 seconds and 2 hours 19 minutes and 17 seconds respectively.

Photo Credit: Orange Room

25-year-old Vietnamese Ms Kim Tuyen Nguyen Thi took the crown of the Singapore National Championship with an excellent swim leg of 27 minutes with more than 4 minutes ahead and finished with a time of 2 hours 31 minutes and 52 seconds. Malaysian Aimi Iwasaki and Vietnamese Thuy Vi Pham finished closed with a time of 2 hours 34 minutes and 5 seconds and 2 hours 38 minutes and 9 seconds respectively.

Elvin Ting, Managing Director of Orange Room Pte Ltd said, “Almost 11 years in hosting the triathlon makes it enjoyable for not only season athletes but also first-timers in a short fast racecourse. Through this race, we also hope to attract more foreign triathletes to join in the Singapore triathlon scene and also to motivate local Singapore to join in the sport.”

Photo Credit: Orange Room

For full results of the Singapore International Triathlon do check out at triathlon.sg.


The World’s Most Famous Marathons

Credit: Abbott World Marathon Majors

There is obviously a lot of history around marathons in general. Most people know the story of Pheidippides in 490 BC running from Marathon to Athens to announce the defeat of the Persians to all those waiting Athenians.

Each of the great marathons known as the World’s Major Marathons has its own interesting history as well. While the runners may not be running to tell of victory on the battlefield, they are performing a feat of endurance, skills, and tactical running that deserves to be celebrated.

Here we are going to look at those great sporting events.


One of the younger of the world marathons, dating back just as far as 2007, marathons in Tokyo do have a longer history. This marathon is a combination of the Tokyo International Marathon and the Tokyo New York Friendship Marathon that took place on alternating years, until being combined.

It was a selection race for the World Championships in Athletics in Osaka in 2007, where 25,000 people signed up.

February 2014 saw Dickson Chumba win with a record time of 2:05:42, which was only the second time someone had run below 2:06 in Japan, and the runner up Tadese Tola also came in under 2:06.

Dickson Chumba wins the 2014 Tokyo Marathon (Tokyo Marathon Foundation). Credit: IAAF

The marathon has consistently attracted over 300,000 applicants.

To run as an elite runner you have run 2:23 for men, and 2:54 for women for the full marathons.


Credit: Giti

Giti Tire supports the BMW Berlin Marathon, which has been going since 1974, usually during the last weekend of September, apart from 2000 because of a scheduling clash with the Olympics, and 2018 because of German Unity Preparations.

There are a whole host of great events centred around the marathon that are split across two days, including inline skaters who compete on the course the Saturday before the marathon, and that Saturday also sees powerwalker hand-bikers, wheelchair riders, and a kid’s marathon.

In 2018, not only was a new course record set by Eliud Kipchoge, but also a world record with a time of 2:01:39, which beat the previous record by 1:18 minutes set by Dennis Kimetto. There was also a course record set in the women’s race of that year, with Gladys Cherono, also of Kenya, achieving a time of 2:18:11, and her runner up Ruti Aga with a time of 2:18:34, and the person in third place, all beating the previous course record of 2:19:12.


The most viewed sporting event in New England, the Boston Marathon has grown a lot since the 15 participants that ran the course back in 1897 when it first started. Now you are looking at an annual sign up of around 30,000 people.

It’s Centennial Race saw it become the largest marathon in the world. It is the oldest annual marathon in the world. It starts in Hopkinton in Middlesex County and ends in Copley Square in Boston.

The course record for the men is held by Geoffrey Mutai for 2:03:02 from 2011, and the women’s record is held by Buzunesh Deba for 2:19:59.

500,000 spectators gather every year for the marathon, and there are some great features of the marathon, such as the Scream Tunnel where students line the course and scream and offer kisses. The Boston Red Sox also play a game every year which then empties out into Kenmore Square to cheer the runners.


Since 1981 people have been running this marathon around the Thames every spring, with the most recent event taking place on Sunday, 28 April 2019.

It was inspired by the New York Marathon and was started by a former Olympic Champion and journalist called Chris Brasher, and athlete John Disley.

It currently ends at The Mall, but used to end at Constitution Hill originally, and Westminster Bridge for 12 years.

Having raised over $450 million since 1991 they hold the Guinness World Record as the largest annual fundraising event in the world, and 2007 was notable for having 78% of the runners raising money.

The current course record holders are Eliud Kipchoge for 2:02:37 from 2019, and 2:15:25 from 2003 for Paula Radcliffe for the women’s race.

Eliud Kipchoge. Time of 2:02:37 and is the second-fastest marathon time ever run on a record-eligible course. Credit: Runner’s World


Every October, on either the first or second Sunday before Columbus Day the fourth-largest race in the world descends on Chicago.

It was inaugurated in 1977, and at that point only had 4,200 runners, to become one of the fastest-growing marathons in the world.

It has an official limit of 45,000 runners and only those clocking in under 6 and half hours are officially timed. The limited race entries do not include elite runners and legacy finishers, or those who are representing a charity when they are running.

Dennis Kimetto holds the current course record for the men’s race, which he set at 2:03:45 in 2013. Paula Radcliffe set the women’s race course record in 2002 at 2:17:18.

New York

Started 49 years ago in 1970, and inspiring the London Marathon, among others. This marathon, which stretches through the five boroughs, is the largest marathon in the world with 52,812 finishers in 2018.

It is is one of the top races in the US, alongside the Boston Marathon, and only Hurricane Sandy was able to stop it in its tracks in 2012.

The requirements to run in the New York Marathon are set out as part of their 9+1 program, where you either run nine sponsored races and donate $1000 dollars or volunteer at a tenth event. The other qualification is that you have completed 15 or more New York Marathons, or if you meet the qualification standards.

Credit: New York Road Runners Media Centre

The events are great to watch, and even if it is the excellence of the top athletes that compels you, or the human drama of some of the amateur runners, and their determination to cross that finish line, all of these marathons really do exemplify a strength of spirit in the athletes, and also excellent sportsmanship. They are a joy to watch.


Malaysia Book of Records Attempt (by Alison Walker)

Credit: Sri chimnoy Marathon Team

I sat at the race briefing of the Self Transcendence 24 Hour Race at the Tooting Bec athletics track in a bit of disbelief as to what I was attempting to do in 24 hours. A few weeks ago, I had written to the Malaysia Book of Records to see if they were interested in recording my performance in this race as there are no official websites in Malaysia which properly lists the 24 hour running times and based on DUV, I thought that I stood a realistic chance in setting a decent distance over the 24 hours.

I started ultra-running this year (2019), being fed up of forever chasing times over the marathon distance because everyone did it. Truth was, I did not enjoy marathons, and I frankly hated the training. I wanted to be able to run freely, for however long or short I wanted, whenever I wanted, many times a day if I so wished. Having listened to Vassos Alexander’s book ‘Running up that hill’, a particular race interested me – Spartathlon. So I looked up the qualification criteria and set out to meet it.

I signed up to the Samphire 100, a trail looped course in the middle of winter to try and achieve this goal of sub 22 hour 100 miles. In typical British weather, there were gale force winds of up to 86mph gusts along the coast of Dover. I told myself, if I don’t reach it this time, it’s ok because the weather was bad. Cutting the long story short, I managed 21:36 and qualified for Spartathlon. So I set out to find my next challenge, as my qualifying time was too late for the 2019 draw.

I slowly met some friends in the ultra-running community in London who have done all the iconic races and they suggested the Tooting 24, which brings together 45 of the most experienced and promising ultra runners from all over the world to overcome the mental and physical challenge of running a 24-hour race over a 400m track. No navigation required – great, I get lost trying to find food, let alone running…

A week after I submitted my application, I got the acceptance email. So I sat down with my coach (Peter McHugh, Run Fast) to plan my schedule for the race. In his words – this will be a challenge both mentally and physically, so we need to get you absolutely ready for this. I have also been working with a strength and conditioning coach (Graham Ferris) to ensure that my muscles can take the load.


An example of a training week during the peak weeks look like this:

Monday: 10 miles easy
Tuesday: 7 miles easy (AM), 8 miles with 4-5miles of track effort (5-10k pace)
Wednesday: 8 miles (AM), strength and conditioning (PM)
Thursday: 18 miles tempo session (AM), 7 miles recovery (PM)
Friday:10 miles easy
Saturday: 12 miles hills plus warm-up and cool down
Sunday: 20 miles long run

Credit: Sri chimnoy Marathon Team

Sometimes the week varies with extra-long training runs or racing fatigued. I do 45-mile night runs with my ultra friends starting at 10 pm and ending at sunrise; or a 30 mile run at the weekend.

Race day 

Given that it was autumn and the previous weeks of weather were nearer 10 degrees, London had an Indian summer which saw temperatures rise to 26+ degrees. Whilst this doesn’t sound hot for Malaysia, everything is relative. Temperatures in September are normally around 17 degrees, which was more optimal racing temperatures. But the upside was, we won’t be freezing at night!

I was very nervous about the heat as the temperatures were due to remain high with thunderstorms forecast. It was also the longest, and possibly furthest distance I would ever run on a flat track. The most amazing part of the race was having a personal lap counter (as well as chip timing), who acknowledges you on every lap and lets you know when you hit key distances like marathon, 50 miles, 100k etc. It brings the race to a more personable level and it was really lovely. 

There were many regulars at this race, including veteran Geoffrey Oliver, who at 86, still runs these races and maintains a consistent speed throughout the race. He is an inspiration to all and he set 8 world records in the race last year!

Early stages of the race

I ran most of the first 4 hours with my teammate, George Lloyd, who is a seasoned ultra runner. We kept the pace chatty, and it was good to have company because we were running around a 400m track and needed some mental stimulation.

Credit: Sri chimnoy Marathon Team

My husband, Matt, was my main crew anchorman, accompanied by George’s wife, Laura. They kept on top of filling our bottles and making sure we were eating something every hour.

The direction changes every 4 hours, which was a relief on the hips and knees due to the repetition. 

I struggled to fuel in the heat and was trying not to throw up (like many in the race), so kept the pace to feel. I changed kit when salt started to crust on my tops to try and mitigate chaffing.

My fuel consisted of – Precision Hydration sachets, Maurten Fuel (especially in the hotter hours when I didn’t want to eat), mochi, jelly babies, plain sandwiches and a few Chia Charge bars. 

The early stages of the race flew by. As the race was in London, friends from my running clubs came to watch and it was fun chatting to them (interspersed with completing the lap). 

Middle stages

When night fell, things got a little harder as the sleep chimp emerged! I had other friends helping Matt with crewing so that he could have a nap/eat dinner. I’m not quite sure what happened in those hours as it was a truly self-transcendence experience. I was moving well even though I had to stretch a few times. My physiotherapist, who was also a teammate and great friend, came to support and gave my legs a little refresh shake, which was really nice about halfway in!

I hit 100k in 10:56 and it was in line with what I thought I could achieve sensibly.

I had many chats with the participants overnight, hearing their inspiring ultra running stories and feeling inspired!

Later stages

I found the sunrise the hardest bit, even though logically it should be the refreshing bit! I think it throws your body clock a bit. As this was my first overnight and into the morning race (I finished my 100 miler in the dark), this was a new experience for me.

Credit: Sri chimnoy Marathon Team

I hit a few lows in the later stages – mostly questioning why did I sign up to run hundreds of laps around a track and also feeling a little tired of the scenery!

My crew rotated every 4 hours as my friends were all keen to help and I didn’t want to impose on them. So having them rotate every 4 hours also brought cheers!

My coach turned up to support at 7 am (I think), and as I was close to the 100-mile point, I picked up the pace and achieved a new 100 mile PB at 19:46. I was warned by many friends that people often go off too fast to nail a quick 100-mile time and basically give up after. So I was keen to be sensible with the times I was after so that I could last the full 24 hours.

There were a few scattered showers in the morning, which was refreshing for us runners but not so good for the crew!

More of my club friends turned up, putting on some tunes and dancing to them to entertain me. However, I hit a low after about 22 hours of running. My feet were very sore from the hard track, and I could feel them screaming at me! George and I had also regrouped at this point so it was a bit more bearable.

I think I had lost my sense of humour at this point, and I also cried a few times (no idea why, just did). We kept moving, which was key.

I went into the race saying I’d be happy with 180km, which is the IAU National standard. No idea how or what it would feel like, but it was a lofty goal. I roughly worked out when I should be hitting key distances so I knew I was on track.

My feet were in so much agony that I had to change into my slippers in the last hour. So, yes, I walked the last hour quickly and managed 185.9km. I was delighted to finish, and I also swore I never want to see a running track for a long time! My friends gathered around at the finishing line and it was such a beautiful thing to be surrounded by people who have supported you in the journey.

Credit: Sri chimnoy Marathon Team

It wasn’t my finest race, but I was glad with the outcome. I had underestimated how mentally tough it would be running around a flat 400m track for 24 hours.

I came 3rd lady and 11th overall, which was a surprise as I stopped looking at the leaderboard and told my crew to not tell me so that I could run my own race!

This was a Malaysia Book of Records achievement, and according to the race organisers and what they could find on DUV, I broke 6 Malaysian records (6hour, 12 hour, 24hr, 50k, 100k and 100 mile). I had achieved a quicker time earlier this year on a 50 mile race so did not break that time!

Video by: Alison Walker

Lessons learnt

As this is still my first year in ultrarunning, I am still on the learning curve of what works and what doesn’t. Having friends in the community can help with suggestions, but ultimately, you have to try it out yourself to know whether it works or not!

So the key things I need to fix for the next long ultra (hopefully Spartathlon) would be – how to make sure I have sufficient calories in the heat, sorting out how my feet feel in the latter stages of the race, as well as the elusive solution to chafing!

Until then, I will be having an active recovery and eating all the food…


My Batman Run 2019 [8km] (by Lingderella)

On event day morning, the moment I woke up I checked the NEA website machiam like checking 4D results except with almost heart attack. Good good, it’s in the normal range, just like my eyes agaration so I just waited patiently for the good news to be announced on their official Facebook page ❤ Heng ah, if haze situation sibeh bad, the race distance will cut short and if sibeh sibeh bad, the whole race will kena cancelled.

The event organiser is pinkapple! 😊 Even till now I felt that all pinkapple events were all very well done and no event by them have disappointed me before. ❤ There were 2 different categories of the 4km fun walk and 8km competitive run. I participated in the race as a pacer for the 8km category! I was given the opportunity to cosplay as Wonder woman at the run 😍 This is my first-time cosplaying for a run 😙 My other teammates cosplayed as Superman, Flash and Harley Quinn from the huge pool of Justice League’s Superheroes and Villain 😍

We have 5:30, 6:00, 6:30 and 7:00 pace groups and I’m in the 7 minutes pace group which means we are running at speed about 7 minutes per km 😊

It was my first time pacing for a night run so I was pretty excited 😍 All of the pacers have two balloons each with LED lights from the beginning but some of our balloons burst even before the race starts 😆 One of the balloons I carried also burst shortly into the run.

The race site was at Marina Barrage, so I met Sabrina to head to the venue together. Love it as it’s an evening race as transportations are available and I can enjoy my sleep till the sun shines until backside on a weekend morning. Wouldn’t have such luxury if it’s a morning race 😆 As we are worried there’s road block everywhere due to F1, we took the MRT to Marina South Pier and walked 1.6km to the race site. 1.6km seems like a very short distance as we are busying chatting 😊

The emcee also announced that due to haze, if participants want to just collect medal without participating in the event also can. I think it’s for the people who’re very concerned of the haze or with health issues.

Flag off was on time at 7 pm for the 4km category and 7.30 pm for the 8km. And I realised that the 4km category is like a super fun category 😍 Most of the participants were in their Batman mask, the cape and wore the event tee (the participants’ entitlements that are included in the race pack) and many have light sticks with them as well. Saw several participants cosplayed as the DC characters as well, one of them who I had a deep impression and clap clap clap for the Wonder Woman as she’s actually a HE! 😆 Very effort with the wig and the short skirt and showing a lot of skin 😂

Once flag off, we run towards Gardens by the Bay East, and then back towards Marina Barrage then the Art Science Museum and back to Marina Barrage with the finishing right at the top on the lawn of Marina Barrage. There was a total of 3 hydration points along the route and the distance marker along the route was very accurate. The volunteers and tourists along the way were very supportive and energetic ❤

Honestly speaking, being a pacer is rather stressful as I have to keep up with the speed. I must admit that I am a very lazy person and if I too exhausted while on my run, I will walk, but this one I cannot walk 😂 Being a pacer has a responsibility, we are responsible for bringing runners who are trying to follow us and some runners are even aiming for their PBs. Along the way we also cheered for runners and encouraged them to run with us, alert them of uneven grounds and bicycles ahead etc.

Crossed the finishing line and received a cold bottle of Ribena and a Batman medal 😍 Explored around the carnival area it’s very fun and lively, after prize presentation there was a zumba session. There’s also game booths and photo booths 😍 Hope that there will be more Batman run or superheroes theme run every year. Themed runs are always more fun than normal races ❤

Wearing a costume for a run is actually super fun, some more I’m in Wonder Woman costume, it was quite easy to run in and I felt sibeh heroic 😂 Luckily my costume is not like Flash costume which is very thick and stuffy 😆 Can we have a Disney Princess Run? I hope there’s a Disney Princess Run soon! I want to dress up as Princess or evil stepmother also can 😆 It will definitely be fun lah! 😍

Anyway, don’t say I bo jio, got Sesame Street Run, online registration extended till 30th September only. Use promo code 5OFFSILING for 5% off registration fee here at Sesame Street Run
Register now!


Review: POSB Kids Run 2019 (by healthobeing)

Without fail, the Tortoise runners will join in this run to raise funds for charity and kind of mark our usual run route on Mondays.

Race Pack Collection

Race pack and the goodies

Did not manage to go to the Race Pack collection for this one.  But when I got my pack, I was quite shocked that the bag is really big, there were many goodies inside.  Samples( washing liquid), body wash and others. Vouchers and discount coupons for many shops and products.  The tee shirt this year is of cooling material and the design is cute.  The goodie bag pack is a large haversack with a front pocket to hold things.

Information: https://www.posb.com.sg/personal/run-for-kids

Race Venue

Group shot at the start

This year the race is in the morning, there are many other categories but our team took the 10km and also the team relay.  There is also the individual category.  The race venue is at Marina Promontory, same as previous years.  The baggage drop, portable toilets and medical stations are available.  I parked in one of the buildings nearby, as on Sundays there is per entry carpark.  There is also a big tent with some booths by POSB, Health Promotion Board, and People’s Association to promote some of the family activities.

Race Venue

Bag drop

Cameo time

The Race Route

Along MBS where David, another avid runner, helped us to take some shots

The route is the same as with every year only whether we get to run up the barrage or not.  This year, we did and the measurement was correct at 10.2km a little overshot but compared to previous years, it was finally exact.  From the Marina Promontory to the Gardens by the Bay East and U-turn back to the promontory.  The route is scenic and breezy for the morning.  But going up the barrage was a little tedious as I had not been really running up hills.  The race clashed with Yellow Ribbon race as such some of the usual photographers were not there.  But we still got some shots from Runcapture, You Run I shoot and also our own in house friend who was there to support us with the shots.

Along the way, there were also water points with non carbonated isotonic and water.  As the route is a U turn route the same water points were spotted along the way.

Team Relay

The team relay takes into consideration the overall timing of 6 runners with at least one female.  It is actually quite competitive as every year the shufflers were there and they really can go very fast.  However, this is also the time you can check on whether you have improved as there are many strong runners in the relay.  It was also nice to see who you were competing with that morning.


Done and Dusted in 49 Min

This race is something the Tortoise runners will never miss yearly and we also enjoyed this get together. The finishing line is quite exhilarating because you get to see it while running back, and you will force yourself for that extra mile.  You get some hydration and the finisher medal after the race.

Camwhoring time

Congrats to Daphne

After the race we will hang around to take pictures of the bay.  Fortunately for us, the haze has cleared on the race day itself.  Else we will be running in the smog, or the race might be cancelled.  Another usual thing we do is to go to Lau Pat Sat for some breakfast.

This year one of the Tortoise runners, Daphne Lim came in a place higher than last year clinching the 1st Runner up position.  We were all very happy for her winning this feat.  Till we come back again next year!


Are Runners in Southeast Asia the Slowest in the World?

The view this morning during the FM Flag-Off. // Photo credit: Standard Chartered KL Marathon Facebook

Globally, runners in timed mass participation running events have never been slower – shows a recent study covering 107.9 million race results from more than 70 thousand events between 1986 and 2018.

In 1986 the average finish time for a Full Marathon was 3:52:35, whereas today it’s 4:32:49 – a slowdown of 40 minutes and 14 seconds. But the rate of slowing has itself been decreasing since 2001. A similar trend can be seen across all the four common running distances (Full Marathon, Half Marathon, 10K and 5K).

A breakdown by gender shows that men are continuously slowing over the years. On the other hand, women were slowing down faster than men between 1986 to 2011, but after that have actually become faster.

SEA countries are the slowest across all distances

The United States is the country with the most runners in the world, but from the countries with most participants (plotted below), it has consistently been the slowest. Spain, on the other hand, has consistently been the fastest marathon nation from 2002 onwards.

When it comes to finishing times, SEA countries rank consistently in the bottom places across all distances, as shown below.

(For a chart that includes more APAC countries, click here)

Malaysia is the slowest Marathon and Half Marathon nation. This is a worrying fact when seen in correlation with indications that over 51.32% of Malaysians lack motivation to exercise. Thailand has the slowest 5K timing, and, unfortunately, is the country that during the past 10 years has slowed down the most on the 10K.

But are SEA runners really the slowest in the world?

Before we jump into any conclusions, let us consider a couple of things.

First, it is known that the optimal running temperature is around 5°C. Temperatures of that sort will never be seen in our region. Here in SEA, runners have to routinely face 30°C+, not to mention the notoriously high levels of humidity.

Therefore, a correction on the finishing times could be attempted based on the graph below which shows that finishing times for the Full Marathon are expected to be up to 30 mins slower, due to temperature differences alone. This would bring SEA countries a couple of positions higher, and much closer to the world’s mean finisher times.

Adapted from chart on RunRepeat.com

Second, participation in running events in Asia is still on the rise, seeing a 24.54% year-on-year growth, in contrast to the slowdown observed in the rest of the world since 2016. It is therefore expected that as race attendance is increasing in the region, the timings of the new, inexperienced and casual participants will blend with that of competitive runners, making the overall timings averages appear slower.

A paradigm shift: From competition to experience

Asia clearly prefers shorter-distance races. We used JustRunLah!‘s Race Database to filter events between 1 January 2018 and 31 December 2019. We found a total of 1332 5K and 900 10K races, considerably more than the 499 Half Marathons and 288 Full Marathons that took place in the same time frame. Such shorter-distance events are usually targeted at recreational runners and tend to attract less competitive runners.

Therefore, it is the increased exposure of the sport, coupled with the plethora of themed runs and family-oriented events that have brought in a totally new group of participants. These new participants are driven by motives very different from those of the traditional competitive runners – be it the runner’s entitlements (goodie bag), brand association, charity support, or just FOMO (fear of missing out). This is backed by trends that show more people traveling overseas to attend races as well as community surveys.

All things considered, the motives for participation seem to be changing from being achievement-focused to being phycological, health- and socially-focused. And races are increasingly being seen as lifestyle events instead of competitions. It is expected that the average times will appear to be slower – unless corrections or segmentations are applied to the data – considering the influx of casual runners.

Data and methodology (for the geeks)

  • Data from “The State of Running” (https://runrepeat.com/state-of-running). Adapted and reprinted with permission.
  • Elite runners have been excluded and thus this is an analysis of recreational runners.
  • Walks and “walk/run for charity”-events have been excluded as well as obstacle course races and other non-traditional running events
  • The study was done in collaboration with the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) and presented in China in June 2019.
  • Data collection was done through databases of race results as well as individual Athletics Federations and races sharing race results.
  • 107.9 million race results, 70,000 events, from 1986 to 2018

Thanks to Jens Jakob Andersen from RunRepeat.com


Participation in Running Events in APAC grows 24.54% year-on-year, Despite Global Slowing

A large study covering 107.9 million race results from more than 70 thousand events from 1986 to 2018 has recently been published by RunRepeat.com and the IAAF. We took a deep dive into the data and hereby presenting you some of the key findings.

Global participation in the last 10 years has seen a 57.8% increase and peaked in 2016. In the last two years, there is a slight (~13%) decline in participation, mainly due to the trends in Europe and the US. These numbers, however, do not include participation in non-timed fun runs and walks, which are expected to be in the rise, since we see that motives for participation are shifting towards health and social.

The great news is that race participation in Asia is still very much on the rise, seeing a 24.54% year-on-year growth with no decline.

Let us look at some possible contributing factors and interesting facts.

Asia clearly prefers shorter-distance races

When we look at the distribution of participants by continent, we see that Asia’s preferred distance is 10K, while most runners in Oceania will go for either 10K or Half Marathons. On the other hand, North America is the continent of 5Ks, and Europe’s favorite distance is the Half Marathon.

We filtered JustRunLah!‘s Race Database between 1 January 2018 and 31 December 2019 and found a total of 1332 5K runs (link) and 900 10K races (link), compared to only 499 Half Marathons (link) and 288 Full Marathons (link). This shows that shorter-distance races are the most popular in our region, not only by attendance but by event-type availability as well.

Women Participation is Rising

Gone are the dark days when women were not allowed in running events (read: First Ladies of Running). Female participation has risen from under 20% in 1986 to just above 50% in 2018, marking the first time in history with more female than male runners in the world!

Ladies seem to prefer 5K races most of all, with female participation being close to 60%.

In our region, a number of women-only races take place throughout the year. Some notable examples and recent reviews:

SEA participation grows despite unfavourable climate for running

Anyone who has raced overseas will know that temperature has a huge impact on finish times as well as overall exertion levels. The optimal running temperature has been found to be between 4 and 5°C, conditions that will never be seen in our region. This partially explains why runners in Asia prefer shorter distances (10K and 5K), as discussed earlier.

Unsurprisingly, climate directly affects participation rates, as can be seen in the graph below, with tropical being the most unfavourable one. This observation alone makes the 20%+ year-on-year growth in our region even more commendable!

People might be starting to join races at an older age

Runners on average are getting older – the average age of runners in 1986 was 35.2 and in 2018 it is 39.3.

It is unclear, however, if this is due to the fact that runners have longer racing careers, or that more people start racing at an older age. The average age of 5K runners has increased from 32 to 40 (25%), for 10Ks it has changed from 33 to 39 (23%), for half marathons – from 37.5 to 39 (3%) and for marathons – from 38 to 40 (6%).

‘Runcations’ have never been more popular

More and more people travel to run in a race. As the world is getting smaller and more connected, the percentage of people traveling to a different country for a race has increased significantly.

For marathons, travelling to run has increased from 0.2% to 3.5%. For half marathons – from 0.1% to 1.9%. For 10Ks – from 0.2% to 1.4%. For 5K this percentage has actually decreased from 0.7% to 0.2%, which could be due to the increase in the number of events available.

There you have it, running is still the most popular mass-participation sport in the world, however, the first signs of global decline have appeared. Nobody can say if this is a short-or long-term trend, or if it just shows that runners now prefer to go for more non-timed and niche events instead of traditional road races. In our region, participation numbers seem healthy and with a lot of room to grow.

Data and methodology (for the geeks)

  • The data covers 96% of US race results, 91% of the race results from the EU, Canada, and Australia and a big portion from Asian, Africa and South America.
  • Elite runners have been excluded and thus this is an analysis of recreational runners.
  • Walks and “walk/run for charity”-events have been excluded as well as obstacle course races and other non-traditional running events
  • All 193 UN-recognized nations are included.
  • The study was done in collaboration with the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) and presented in China in June 2019.
  • Data collection was done through databases of race results as well as individual Athletics Federations and races sharing race results.
  • 107.9 million race results, 70,000 events
  • From 1986 to 2018

Adapted from “The State of Running” with permission. You can find the full results here (https://runrepeat.com/state-of-running). 

Special thanks to Jens Jakob Andersen from RunRepeat.com


Have You Heard of These Running Shoe Brands?

1. Dhb

Yes, yes may know Dhb as a cycling shoe brand but do you know that they also manufacture running shoes? One such example would be the Altra Superior 4 which is a lightweight and fast trail running shoe that adopts Dhb’s unique GAITERTRAP technology which allows strapless gaiter attachment to prevent debris from building up beneath the shoe.

2. La Sportiva

La Sportiva is an Italian brand that specializes in the trail running sector. They manufacture their shoes in Italy and distribute mainly in North America. Specifically, Boulder, Colorado due to location’s reputation for being the running capital of the world. La Sportiva conducts extensive research on ways to create the best possible products for its customers.

3. Dynafit

Dynafit started off making ski boots for competitive ski mountaineers. Some of whom went on to win World Cups and Olympic events. It was only in 2012 when Dynafit introduced their Alpine running collection. Despite the fact that Dynafit shoes are designed more for the cold mountains, it is great for the extremely rugged trails that you may encounter.

4. Five Ten Terrex Agravic XT TLD

This shoe is designed for rough and rocky trail running, and here, in collaboration with the mountain bike gurus at Troy Lee Designs, they get a style boost from the two-wheeled world. The standard Terrex Agravic XT is an exemplary trail running shoe featuring exclusive TLD graphics to give the shoe a mountain bike style boost.

5. Columbia

Some of you may know Columbia as a hiking apparel brand but they also produce running shoes which are great for the trails and off-road terrains. It’s conservative looks and sturdy construction may not be the most fashionable of all the shoes available on the market, but it certainly does what it is made to do and does it well.

If you have come across other brands that are not on this list, do not hesitate to share them in the comments below!

Disclaimer: The author does not represent the views of the brands and/or companies mentioned in this article.


5 Best Exercises For Strengthening Your IT Band

One of the most common running injuries is Iliotibial band syndrome (IT band syndrome). This issue occurs when the connective fascia tissue that connects the shinbone to the pelvis bone becomes too tight. The tightness of the tissue causes the IT band to painfully rub against the femur.

Often, it is runners who experience IT band syndrome. Things like increasing running mileage too quickly, poorly-fitting shoes, and hill training can lead to IT band problems. The burning and sharp pain that comes around the knee—and sometimes hip—can make it tough to stick with a running schedule.

If you have been struggling with IT band issues or want to prevent future problems, doing things like addressing your nutrition to optimize joint health can help, along with doing these five exercises.   

1.   Planking Hip Touches

To do this move, you will need to get in the plank position, with your forearms on the floor. Once you are stable, twist at the waist and touch your right hip to the floor, then return to the starting position. Alternate touching your right and left hips to the floor with ten touches per side.

Doing 1-2 reps as part of your warm-up can help develop greater flexibility throughout your pelvic region. Also, this exercise can help you build up your core, which will provide you with greater support for your lower body’s muscles and ligaments.

2.   Rotating IT Band Stretch

Start by standing with your feet hip-width apart and your arms at 90-degree angles from your sides. While keeping your back straight, rotate at the hips and reach down until the back of your left hand touches the outside of your right foot. Breathe slowly and hold this pose for a count of 30 then come back to the start position.

You should do this 4-5 times each side as it will help you to stretch out your IT bands while also building up your flexibility.

3.   Hip Raises With Resistance Band

Slip a resistance band around your thighs and lay down on the floor with your arms at your sides and knees bent. Your legs should be spread enough in this prone position until the band gives some resistance. Once you are centered, raise your hips up and hold for 15 seconds before releasing and lowering.

Hip raises alone can help stretch out a tight IT band, but with the added resistance from the band, you can maximize the movement value of this exercise.

4.   Clam Shell Stretch

Also using a resistance band around the thighs, the clam shell stretch requires you to lie down on your side. Once you are on your side, lift the knee of the leg that is on top while keeping your feet touching. Hold the lifted position for 10 seconds, then lower it back down. Repeat this movement 8-10 times on each side.

The resistance provided by the band will help improve the quality of your stretch, allowing you to engage your anterior thigh muscles as you stretch out your IT band.

5.   Standing IT Band Stretch

To do this stretch, you will need to cross your feet, leaving a bit of space in-between the sides of your feet. Raise your arms above your head and clasp your hands while leaning to the left. You should feel a good stretch running from your knee to your waist. Hold this position for a count of 30 seconds before releasing.

As long as you do this movement in a stable position, you should be able to temporarily alleviate tightness and nagging pain due to tight IT bands.

Ways To Prevent Future IT Band Problems

You don’t have to wait until your IT bands become an issue before you address them. By taking proactive measures, you can protect yourself from IT band syndrome as well as other common running injuries.

Take Time For Proper Stretches

There are many debates on whether or not warm-up and cool-down stretches are necessary. However, those debates tend to end when someone is dealing with a strained and pained muscle that has clearly been overtaxed.

Even if all you give yourself is a solid five minutes for your dynamic warm-up stretches and another 5 minutes at the end of your workout to gently static stretch your body, you can help prevent stiff, sore muscles and some potential nagging injuries.

Add Foam Rolling To Your Routine

For those who are beginning to develop aches and pains, it is time to start foam rolling. While it can be uncomfortable to use a foam roller—since you generally are pressing sore muscles against thick, unyielding foam—the act of foam rolling can help ease tightened muscles and tissue, like your IT band.

Foam rolling also promotes better blood flow, which can be especially helpful for runners who have poor circulation. There are many different foam rolling exercises you can try, but if you are struggling with IT band issues, be sure to target your quads and glutes.    

Change Out Running Shoes

Some people don’t bother to change out their running shoes until they are unwearable, and others never get fitted with the right shoes. Running shoes are designed to last for 300-450 miles of running on average—your actual mileage may vary depending on the shoes and manufacturer. After that point, the cushioning on the shoe is pounded down, and it is no longer supporting your movement correctly.

As for not being properly fitted, if possible, get fitted at your local running store. A store that specializes in running is best, as they can give you better information regarding shoe fit. If that isn’t possible, following the rule of going up a half size from your normal shoe size is good. As feet swell while you run, you don’t want to have your feet rubbing and blistering by wearing too-tight shoes. 

Include Cross-Training

According to NordicTrackPromoCodes.com, “the repetitive, strenuous motion of running can lead to IT band syndrome, as well as other common running injuries.” That’s why it is so critical that runners include regular cross-training into their workout schedules.

With cross-training, not only is the monotony of running broken up, but more muscles receive attention. As these auxiliary muscles are developed, the main muscles involved in running are better supported, helping to prevent injuries. Along with doing things like swimming and cycling for cross-training, research has shown that weight lifting can greatly improve running economy.

Increase Mileage Slowly

It can be exhilarating to run further and faster, but it can lead to a number of injuries if the amount of miles you are running increase too quickly. Some running plans are created without considering the safe increase of running mileage.

To help protect yourself from potential injury, stick to increasing your mileage by no more than 10% a week. That means, if you are currently running 25 miles a week, you should increase only up to 27.5 miles the next week.

So, whether you decide to go run with a group or solo, be sure to make time to fit these IT band exercises into your workout routine. That way, you can protect your body for years of successful running.

Guest author bio:Kevin Jones is a full-time professional fitness expert. When he isn’t in the gym, he is offering practical research, fitness plans and nutritional tips to the world. Kevin regularly contributes to many fitness and health authority websites. With a passion for family, fun, and fitness, Kevin has found a way to manage and combine these three aspects in an effective and successful way.


Mandiri Bintan Marathon Kicks-Off With More Than 3,000 Participants From Over 35 Countries

Participants in high spirits at the flag-off point of the 21km Half Marathon. Credits: Bintan Resorts International

Singapore, 7 September 2019 – From first-timers to running enthusiasts, there is something for everyone at the Mandiri Bintan Marathon this year. Taking place in the beautiful Bintan Island, the second edition of the Marathon kicks off yesterday with more than 3,000 runners across five categories.

In addition to the 21km Half Marathon and 42km Full Marathon categories for seasoned runners, the crowd favourite 10km category makes a comeback this year by popular demand. In fact, many first-timers are challenging themselves in this category. Industry watchers will also have their eyes on the new 42km Full Marathon Elite category, introduced to challenge elite runners from around the region who have a shorter qualifying time. Another new category – the 3km Family Run – has also been introduced this year, perfect for parents who wish to run with their children. Open to parents/guardians and children aged 4 to 12, this non-competitive fun run the category will include various carnival games throughout the race route, making it even more exciting for the little ones.

Participants from Singapore at the Mandiri Bintan Marathon, held in Bintan Island on 7 and 8 September 2019. Credits:Bintan Resorts International

The five categories, spanning over two days, have attracted more than 3,000 participants from over 35 countries with the oldest participant aged 75 years old from Singapore. The top three countries with the most participants are Indonesia, Singapore and China. Top runners can look forward to attractive cash prizes totalling up to SGD100,000 (IDR 1 billion).

“Being able to run amidst nature, away from the cityscape is truly a very refreshing change. I had taken part in the marathon last year and it was an awesome run. That’s why I am back this year to participate in the 21km category. I have been training regularly for this run and hope to clock a good timing tomorrow,” shared Jenny Huang, 46, a Mandiri Bintan Marathon’s ambassador who is from Singapore.

Jenny Huang, a seasoned marathoner and one of Mandiri Bintan Marathon’s ambassador from Singapore participated in the 21km Half Marathon category earlier today. Credits: Bintan Resorts International

This year, the Marathon also coincides with Singapore’s September school holidays. This gives not only individuals but also families with children, the opportunity to extend their stay to enjoy a run-cation in Bintan.

“We are heartened to see such a great turnout for our Mandiri Bintan Marathon. This year, we wanted to expand our reach to include people across all ages. We wanted families to join also and turn this into a run-cation where they could burn some calories and enjoy some quality bonding time just a 60 minutes ferry ride away from Singapore. So, we are glad to see many parents signing up with their little ones for our new 3km Family Run. We are also excited for our first-timers who will be challenging themselves with our popular 10km category and we hope to see many of these faces again at next year’s Marathon too,” said Mr Abdul Wahab, PT Bintan Resort Cakrawala Group General Manager.

Mathew Samperu, first finisher of the 21km Half Marathon clocked an impressive timing of 01:08:12.6. Credits: Bintan Resorts International

“Coming on board as the inaugural title sponsor of Mandiri Bintan Marathon solidifies Mandiri Bank’s aim to elevate the awareness of curated healthy lifestyle habits and regular exercise for a better quality of life. This also cements Mandiri Bank’s commitment to proactively be involved in the development of Indonesia’s tourism sector. We give our full support to communities, industries and sectors that are putting our country on the world map as a prominent well-known international sports tourism destination,” shared Mr Isnaeni Subekti, Mandiri Bank, Government Business Head, Regional 1.


We Run the World – SHAPE Run 2019 (25 August 2019 @ Kallang Practice Track) By Rebekah Ong

Cover Photo by Terence Ang

“We Run the World” – These are really inspiring and empowering words from this year’s SHAPE Run. SHAPE Run is the leading all-women’s race in Singapore since it first started in 2006 and has been attracting runners of all levels and all walks of life. The last time that I joined this event was in 2016 and that was a fun experience itself too.

I love SHAPE Run and like every year, they lift up to their reputation of impeccable event organisation, on-trend sponsors, exciting fringe activities and high-value goodie bags!

Speaking of goodie bags, this year goodie bag was as good as the previous years. There were soooo many goodies inside like a box of Kelloggs Special K cereal, various skincare products, bottled drinks and a packet of dates. The Ang Ku Kway Girl design of the tote bag was soooo cute and is definitely Instagrammable.

This year SHAPE Run took place at the Kallang Practice Track. My bestie, Cheng Yee (CY) and I took part in the 10KM category which flagged off at 06:45hrs. Both of us had opted to take the shuttle bus service provided by Share Transport to the race site. Share Transport is a “bus pooling” app and purchasing of tickets via the app are very simple and efficient. Cost-wise, it was $7 for a very comfortable and convenient ride. Both of us reached the race site on good time, giving us ample time to do our bag drop, visit the toilet and take part in the mass warm-up.

The Kallang race track was buzzing with activity even though it’s like 06:00hrs! Bag drop was fast and efficient. CY and I decided to join in the mass warm-up which was conducted by TFX instructors. Catchy music and simple aerobics moves definitely set the tone for the run. It kind of reminded me of my times when I used to attend Hi-Lo class at the gym. Conducting the warm-up at the main stage area instead of inside the START pen was a fantastic move by the organisers. There was definitely more space to move around and I could see the participants enjoying themselves doing the moves and getting hyped up for the run.

The race was flagged off promptly at 06:45hrs and all of us headed off past the START Line and to our race. The 1st KM was a bit congested due to the narrow roads but thereafter it spread out. The route brought us along Nicoll Highway, Kallang basin, Rocher River and back to the Kallang Practice Track. I have not attended run events that took us by this route so it was a pleasant change in scenery.

For this year, they had an all ladies pacer team and my dear Xiao Mei, Rachel got selected to be a pacer for the 80 minutes group. I was hoping not to fall too far behind and did my best to keep ahead of the 1hr 15 mins pacers.

Though I had carried a water bottle with me while running, I noted there were sufficient water points along the way and they were positioned strategically along the route and with cold water and 100 plus which was a welcome treat for all!

There were lots of photographers along the way and flashing that smile was a great way to take your mind off the monotony of the run. A big thank you to you guys ( Terence Ang, Dave Poh, RunCapture, Running Shots and Run Photo Run Gallery) for capturing these wonderful race moments. Check out some of my favourite shots (above)!

Overall I enjoyed this year edition of the SHAPE Run. They never fail to provide an awesome experience for their participants! Kudos to all who made this event a successful one.


A Roaring Front: The 2019 Standard Chartered Singapore Marathon Medal – 30% Discount Code inside

Organisers of the 2019 Standard Chartered Singapore Marathon™ (SCSM) unveiled the SCSM medal design for this year’s Marathon category, a second rendition of the “Bold Gold” series. The medal design is fronted by the Merlion, a unique yet deeply-rooted symbol of Singapore, with key elements of the city’s iconic skyline in the background.

The 15,000 anticipated participants in the Marathon category will receive the iconic medal upon completion of SCSM’s first evening race on 30 November.

To begin preparing for this year’s race, runners can now participate in training programmes from the Running Department, Garmin Women Squad, or SCSM’s virtual running community on Strava, helping runners put their best foot forward as they prepare for the race.

SCSM 2019 Mobile Application

Participants can now receive the latest race information and updates ‘live’ via the SCSM 2019 mobile application. The app also includes a 3-month training plan, tailored to each runner’s schedule as they gear up to race day. The app is scheduled for launch in September, with ‘live’ updates around key alerts like road closures and race pack collection reminders rolled out closer to the event.

While race slots for the Half Marathon are sold out, limited entries for the Marathon category are available.

Up to 30% off for all our fans!

If you haven’t registered already, wait no longer and take advantage of this special offer.

Exclusively for JustRunLah!, enjoy special rates to Standard Chartered Singapore Marathon from now until 22 November! 

  • Marathon (42.195km): 30% OFF (U.P. S$130)
  • Other Categories: Up to 20% OFF, depending on the category

The promo codes have expired on 22 November 2019, thank you.


What gear do you REALLY need for triathlon? (hint, not as much as you think)

What gear do you really need for triathlon?  It’s not as complicated as some may want you to think. Getting in to the sport of triathlon is easier than you might realize. Especially if you are already a cyclist, swimmer, or runner, the transition to doing three sports in a race instead of just one really isn’t all that much.

What we love about triathlon is the cross-training. Instead of pounding the same joints day-in and day-out, you can spread out your training.  Your cardiovascular system gets worked each day, but your muscles and joints get to engage in a variety of ways instead of just one.

The barrier for many people is the gear – if you are a runner, trying to figure out the swim and bike gear can be a little daunting.  Same goes for if you are mainly a cyclist or swimmer.  It does not need to be.  Here, we want to give you the simple answer on how much equipment you need to do a triathlon.

We will give you an overview of the basic gear you need, in this order:  Accessories, and then Swim, Bike, Run.


Having enough gear to complete a triathlon is really pretty simple.  The first thing you might want to think about is all the stuff that is not part of the actual swim, bike, or run, but those things you want with you at the race itself.

Most people like to have a little energy or nutrition with them – either gel packs or other energy bars.  You power up just before the race, and then again at the transitions.  Don’t forget about water, which is a great thing to take plenty of on the bike.

Racers also like to have a way of keeping time and pace – usually a good triathlon watch or even their phone with an app (but not in the water).  That helps you monitor your race performance, but is also very useful during your weeks of training that might lead up to the race.

Finally, you need some type of pack or bag to carry it all in.   This does not have to get complicated, but keep in mind you may have a bit of gear, and some of it might be wet. There are triathlon bags made specifically for multisport and triathlon, but the truth is you can just use a gym back or any old bag.

Beyond that, you may want things like a race belt, anti-chafe roll-on, and other accessories, but you really don’t need much if your goal is simply to do a race.


The swim leg is pretty easy, gear-wise.  You will need goggles, and you will wear your triathlon shorts (men) or singlet / suit (ladies) in the water.  Other than that, the big decision is if you want a wetsuit.  Most races allow wetsuits, some don’t.  People like wetsuits because of the warmth, and the added buoyancy.  If you use a wetsuit, just be sure that it is meant for triathlon.  Many wetsuits are meant for surfing and don’t provide range-of-motion for a good swim stroke.

Your race will always provide a swim cap.


The leg of the race is where you can spend a lot of money, but you don’t have to!  Most people who simply want to complete a triathlon will use whatever bike they have access to – their old road bike, a commuter bike, or a friend’s bike (as long as it fits).

For people who want to be competitive and see how fast they can be, it is best to use either a road bike or tri bike, and one that fits well.  You can spend thousands on a bike, but most cyclists will do just fine on anything that is not terribly heavy and fits them just right.

The race will require you to wear a bike helmet, and you would be crazy not to have some eye protection while you ride.  Other than that, just be sure you have the right shoes to match your pedals, a shirt that you can wear for the bike and run, and you will be in business.

We recommend starting on a bike that is adequate – ideally a road or time trial design – but saving the big spend for when you know that you will be doing a few tris, or perhaps doing a longer race like and Ironman.


The run leg is pretty easy, especially considering that your typical triathlon has done a bunch of 5Ks or 10Ks.  You will want your running shoes, and anything else that helps you run comfortably.  Beyond that, you are really free to choose whatever you want.  Most people just keep their same clothing on from the bike leg, taking their helmet off and changing shoes.

It’s Not that Complicated

There you have it.  You could easily spend $5,000 or more to get outfitted on the right bike, buy a high-end wetsuit, and have the latest tri watch or bike computer.  The fact, though, is that doing a triathlon doesn’t require a ton expense.  Most of what you need is already within reach.

Guest post: Paul Johnson – Founder of Complete Tri (https://completetri.com)


6 Reasons why you must join this Night Half Marathon at JB

Let’s join Sunway Iskandar Night Half Marathon! You will feel the difference, running under the stars! The event will take place on 26th October 2019, happening at Sunway Citrine Hub, Iskandar Puteri, Johor. Here are 6 reasons why you must join this event.

1. You get a Finisher Medal with 5 Swarovski Crystals

You will get a medal embedded with Swarovski crystals. Yes, you’ve heard it right, not just one, not just two, but FIVE Swarovski crystals to represent the starry night that you will get to experience running in!

Runners of all categories – 5KM, 10KM and 21KM who complete the course within the cutoff time will be entitled to the finisher medal.

Also, 21KM runners will have an option to top-up RM30 to get a limited-edition full sublimation finisher tee from ULTRON!

21km Finishers’ T-Shirt

2. The Half Marathon falls on a LONG WEEKEND! Yay!

It’s a long weekend for Singaporeans (and Malaysians)! The run will be happening on the 26th of October 2019 which will coincide with Singapore’s Deepavali holiday (28th of October) – a perfect time to take a short vacation in Johor!

3. 120 Trophies will be given out on that day! Wow!

The organizer will be giving out 120 trophies in total, making it 10 trophies for each category! There will be cash prizes up for grab as well so what are you waiting for? Time to lace up and start training now!

4. It’s a good chance to meet up with runners from across the globe

Up until now, they have participants from 16 different countries in total!

  • Australia
  • China
  • Netherlands
  • Philippines
  • Indonesia
  • India
  • Iran
  • Japan
  • Kazakhstan
  • South Korea
  • United States
  • Vietnam
  • Thailand
  • South Africa
  • Singapore
  • Malaysia

The pacers will be coming down specially from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia and Singapore. Special thanks to Coffee Tea Runners from Singapore who will be pacing the 10KM race as well as Wind Runners from Kuala Lumpur and Mr David Shum, IAAF certified coach from Singapore who will be pacing the 21KM Half Marathon.

10km 0:55 and 1:00 Pacers
10km 1:10 and 1:20 Pacers
21km 2:00 and 2:15 Pacers
21km 2:30 and 2:45 Pacers
21km 3:00, 3:30 and 4:00 Pacers

5. The venue is only 5 minutes from Tuas Checkpoint! WOW!

You can get there in 2 ways.

By Bus – You will have an option of taking a bus either from Jurong East/Boon Lay to get directly to the Sunway Iskandar Citrine Hub.

By Car – You can also drive in and park your car here.

6. And lastly, it is SUPER CHEAP!

The early-bird tickets are only selling for RM48(5KM), RM58(10KM) and RM68(21KM) which is only about SGD 16.00 – SGD22.70 per ticket! OMG

P.S. Early-bird tickets will only be available until the 7th of September so go and grab now!

Race Kit Collection

It will be happening at Sunway Iskandar Events Gallery on the 24th-25th of October (12pm-8pm). You can also come on the race day from 10am-4pm to collect your race kit. Unlike other races, you won’t have to come 1 week in advance just to collect your race kit.

Event Details

When: 26th October 2019
Where: Sunway Citrine Hub, Iskandar Puteri, Johor
Flag off time: 08:00 pm onwards
Registration close: 26th September 2019

Prepare yourself for a fantastic run under the dazzling stars at the biggest night running event in Johor!

– To register, simply download the Sports App, JomRun.
Android app: http://bit.ly/jomrun
iPhone app: http://bit.ly/jomrunios
– To learn more about the event, head on to https://www.jomrun.com/event/sunway-iskandar-night-half-marathon



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