This year, the Great Eastern Women’s Run, billed as Asia’s largest women-only race, was launched last weekend to plenty of activities and fanfare at 313 Somerset.
Run To Live Great Programme
With the run, a brand new fitness programme, Run To Live Great, was introduced too – to encourage non-runners to take up the sport, by buddying up with an existing runner.
Explained Tan Seck Geok, the Head of Group Corporate Communications at Great Eastern, “We want to encourage non-runners and give them a chance to start running. Essentially, it is about giving them encouragement that not everyone can do a half marathon or a marathon – all you need to do is to start.”
So far, the response has been good. Said Seck Geok, “The response has been tremendous and better than we expected. 45 pairs of women have already signed up and there are still three weeks to go.” Altogether, 50 pairs will be selected to participate in the programme.
In this programme, you will attend training sessions and fringe activities and at the end, will complete a run at the Great Eastern Women’s race. And you and your partner will each receive a complimentary kit worth $350.
Photo Booth and Scrap-booking
I took part in a scrap-booking activity at the launch, where I had a photo of myself taken at the photo booth. Then I designed it as best as I could, using marker pens, ribbons, wooden pegs, stickers and other creative art materials.
I can’t say that I am particularly artistic, but I definitely gave my best shot at this activity. It was actually quite fun to take and design the photograph, though, and I enjoyed getting involved with the design work.
For this scrap-booking activity, the best design wins a Polar training computer.
At the launch event, running mobility tests were also conducted by Tan Tock Seng Hospital, who is partnering with the Great Eastern Women’s Run.
Said physiotherapist Mark Chan, who is conducting the assessment, “We are doing basic tests to see if there is anything we can pick up that will predispose you to running injuries. These tests look at the fundamental mobility of your joints. For example, if you have a stiff ankle, then your risk of kneecap, hip and back pain is higher.”
With running getting more popular and people turning into ‘weekend warriors’ who only exercise twice a week, Mark felt that such tests are important. He said, “Our work nature is making us more sedentary. So you see a lot of runners coming in with weak hips and other problems that they don’t know they have. As a result, if they start picking up the mileage, they’ll get all sorts of aches and pains.”
So he advised that all runners, or anyone who wants to start on a running regime to train for a race, should get themselves tested, before they actually get seriously injured.
For runners who may have missed the tests during the launch event but wish to get an assessment done though, Tan Tock Seng will be holding a few workshops in the build-up to the Great Eastern Women’s Run. According to Mark, the first one will be held on 21 June and costs $35 per entry. Screening tests will be done at these workshops.
Running with the Pacers
Another highlight of the launch event was a 3km fun run with the Great Eastern Women’s Run pacers last Sunday morning. These pacers are from the Running Department group.
It was a rather fascinating experience to be running in the heart of Orchard Road. Clad in our colourful running gear and with our bright red balloons, we must definitely have been an interesting sight for the morning Orchard Road shoppers.
The scenic route took us from 313 Somerset towards Ion Orchard and the bus stop near Tomlinson Road where we U-turned, before heading back to the starting point. Even though we had to constantly stop for traffic lights, I definitely enjoyed this short run.
The pacers themselves were also very friendly and constantly chatted with the runners to make them feel completely at ease during the run.
As a reward for completing the run, ice-cold 100 Plus drinks and a pretty black gym bag were given out to all runners as a souvenir. I accepted my can of isotonic drink with relish, as I was feeling quite thirsty and tired after the late-morning run.
This year, the Great Eastern Women’s run will be held on 9 November, at The Float, Marina Bay.
If you would like more information, or you would like to sign up for the Great Eastern Women’s Run, or the Run To Live Great programme, you may do so at http://www.greateasternwomensrun.com
Early bird registration for this run is open until 6 July.