StanChart Marathon 2015: Training Run With Pacers #3

To prepare runners for the Standard Chartered Marathon Singapore 2015, which takes place on Sunday 6 December this year, the official event pacers, who are from Running Department, have been organising a series of training runs.

Runners and pacers congregate outside Parkway Parade.

Runners and pacers congregating outside Parkway Parade.

Third training run took place at East Coast Park on Saturday

The third training run took place on Saturday. Runners taking part, met at the adidas store at Parkway Parade.

The Full Marathon runners completed 21km while the Half Marathon runners did 18km.

Running Route

We started outside the Parkway Parade shopping mall and ran through the underpass at NTUC FairPrice Marine Parade, to get to Area C of East Coast Park. From there, we then headed through East Coast Park to the NSRCC (National Service Resort and Country Club). This marked the U-turn point for both the 21km and the 18km runners.

The running route.

The running route.

From there, we headed back to Area C and the underpass. Upon reaching the underpass, the 18km runners returned to Parkway Parade while the 21km runners carried on for another 1.5km towards Fort Road (East Coast Park Area B) before heading back to the starting point.

Due to the early starting time, the run was quite comfortable at the beginning, but we quickly began to feel the Singapore heat and humidity after the 9km mark.

But I had felt that the cool sea breeze at East Coast Park had somewhat helped with preventing the humidity from soaring though.

Runners set their GPS watches before taking off.

Runners setting their GPS watches before taking off.

Run marks the beginning of Tapering Week

To the official Running Department pacers, this run marked the beginning of tapering week. In fact, their longest training session had been a 33km training run the week before.

Explained pacer Kenneth Chan, 53, a public servant, “There are less than three weeks from now till race day. You should start tapering down already. At the same time, get enough rest and hydrate yourself well. Try not to get injured too.”

That's me before the training run.

That’s me before the training run.

Agreed his co-pacer, Roy Tay, 41, a process engineer, “The training has been done. Take care of yourself. Have enough rest and hydrate yourself well during this period.”

Maintain intensity but cut volume

At the same time, Tay also added that though you are tapering and trying to get some rest before the big race, it is not an excuse to slack. He explained, “If you are cutting volume and as a result, you feel that you are not working out enough, then you should increase your intensity so that you are getting a similar workout as before, but for a shorter time duration.”

Another pacer, Daniel Preiss, 31, a banker, also added that getting in some short runs are important, especially if you are feeling nervous in the last couple of weeks leading up to the race. He said, “Rest and sleep are going to be the most important things between now and race day. But if you are feeling nervous, it’s fine to do some short distance runs.”

Runners relax after the run.

Participants relaxing after the run.

Added Preiss, “You should definitely not be doing any more long runs between now and race day, but the short runs would definitely help you to get your legs moving.”

Do not use whatever you buy at the race pack expo

Tay also pointed out that it is important not to buy anything at the race pack expo – with the intention of using it at the StanChart Marathon. He said, “At the race expo there are lots of things on sale. So you tend to buy a lot of stuff, but don’t not use them at the race.”

The reason behind this is because if you use something new at a race, especially without testing it out prior to the race, you are more likely to run into unwanted problems such as chafing, corns or blisters.

Added Tay, “It’s fine to make purchases as the race expo is usually a great time to get good bargains. But use all those nice things for the next race – not this one.”

Carbo Loading is a Western concept

Chilling out at Parkway Parade after the run.

Chilling out at Parkway Parade after the run.

For carbo-loading, Tay feels that is a Western-based concept. And as Asians, most of us already have a normal diet that includes plenty of carbo such as rice and bread. He explained, “My suggestion is to try and not increase your carbohydrate content especially if you are following the Asian diet as it already contains lots of carbs – which should be enough for race day.”

Tay continued, “But you can still load a bit and get together with friends, by having a good dinner on Thursday night. But do not do so on Saturday – or else you will wake up with a very heavy stomach on the race morning – that will not be optimal to run with.”

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