Friday, October 23, 2015

The Haze Runner

Haze, how do I not love thee? 

Every year Malaysia got hit with haze and it seems never ending. This year is not an exception too, sigh. Info here Other than rain and dry season, we also have haze season. However, this year is nastier thanks to the constant burning effort from Indonesian, the typhoon, the boy El Nino etc. Geographically, Malaysia and Singapore are at disadvantage as the haze easily migrated from Indonesia (Sumatra and Kalimantan) to here. The haze migration started in early September this year and showing no sign of retreating even in late October. Experts said it will continue until December or January. Read here Dem. Deep down, I somehow wish the haze to reach Jakarta, Bali and Bandung but it’s just a wishful thinking. Perhaps the haze issue will be resolved fast if the haze reach there. Thanks to the haze, flights are being cancelled, people stranded, schools closed, more health related cases, less agriculture production and we become less productive as well. The terrifying info on composition of Indonesian haze can be read here,

The Maze Haze Runner
It’s advisable to not running outdoor. I won’t run as I don’t want to jeopardize my health. Safety first. Yes, I do envy those who are brave enough to run in the haze. Maybe they have platinum lungs. Oh I envy more! I will definitely not going to run if the Air Pollution Index (API) is more than 90. Usually the haze is less visible with slightly burnt smell for API 90 and below. Some say 100 below is safe enough to run. 90 is my own standard. My most favourite website (have to) is This is the Department of Environment's (DOE) official application for Air Pollutant Index (API). Please click at API Table (hourly) to get the hourly reading throughout Malaysia. All related parties refer here before making any decision.

Let’s talk more on running and haze. Dr. Derek Li, an elite runner from Singapore discussed it well at this blog, You also can read about this topic at, and Conclusion, please monitor the API reading first. If the reading is okay, you can proceed to outdoor running and if it’s not, please run indoor in a well air conditioned room.

Makan, makan, makan, makan dan makan lagi
A number of running races had been postponed and cancelled in Malaysia. High profile races with high cash prizes can’t escape this fate as well. The cancelled/postponed races are Mizuno Wave Run (cancelled, later changed to postponed), Standard Chartered KL Marathon (SCKLM), BSN Putrajaya Night Marathon (BSNPNM) and The International Morib Duathlon. A few more will follow suit. The organizer did the right thing to postpone/cancel the race although it’s not a popular action to begin with. The safety of runners are their main concern. Many runners expressed their anger and frustration to the races official Facebook page. So much drama. Personally I think they should not let their emotion clouds their judgement. Yes, you lose some because of flight ticket & hotel booking but it’s not organizer’s fault. T&C has stated clearly that there’ll be not refund, compensation or whatsoever in the event of cancellation. Please blame the Indonesian who started the fire. Move on please. Please don’t be selfish.

Oh snap! Pic from FB

Haze season is my off season. Not going to run outdoor and perhaps not going to run at all LOL. Err maybe run a little. No race for me, not worth risking my health for PB/podium. See y'll again when this season ends. Wake me up when September haze ends ;)

We are Spartan! The Tunku Kurshiah Walk-a-Run Carnival!

Disclaimer: This entry has nothing to do with the The Spartan Race ;)

Ooh I could write all day long about this part. However, I don't feel like writing too much so here goes. We registered The Tunku Kurshiah Walk-a-Run Carnival, wore The Spartan handmade (budget) costume, ran, won 2nd place fastest team, won again for no 2 best dressed team and went home. That's it. Not satisfied? Ok, that was just the teaser ;)

Before the event
I saw the TKC advertisement and found it interesting. Costume run was on my wishlist. Got individual & team category. Participant will get Lifeline ID which is quite cool. I wanted to participate in team category and approached few friends. I even emailed the organizer about the costume and they said it isn't compulsory to wear one.

Fast response from organizer
Err thanks for the wish huhuhu. Don't know how to response to this
Can run fast by going costume-less. Top5 prize and obviously it was hard to secure one. Sadly most of my friends were reluctant and hesitant. Some got job, some will be on holiday and some don't want to wear costume. Eventually they said no. Kinda bad luck to me huhuhu. Oh well, I still want to participate even as a lone ranger. I stared at that website for many times but somehow the no-mood stroke me bad and forbade me from registering. I'll wait until the end of registration date (31st Mac 2015) before making any decision. 
My tweet!
Meanwhile, I created #10k40min whatsapp group on 25th January 2015. Members were Ariff, Ridwan and yours truly. We have the same objective and this group will be a platform for us in sharing our training and tips. They asked me as the group admin to add Munir. I didn't really know him but he must be good. Actually I met Munir once last year at Great Eastern Live Great Run. He greeted me and said he's my IG follower. Oh sorry man I didn't realize it was you :) I also suggested the TKC Walk-a-Run Carnival to this group but no response. Sigh.

However, there was one fine day when Ariff suddenly asked about the event. He interested in joining. I was elated and responded. Surprisingly Ridwan and Munir wanted to participate as well. We did some lengthy discussion before coming up with the Spartan idea. I did the registration & payment on behalf of us. Ridwan came up with concept and costume design while I drafted the race day strategies.

FB announcement, semangat!
Costume in the making. Photo from Ridwan
Ridwan and Ariff wanted to do topless and since Munir and I on the shy side, we not going to do it. Sorry fans (if we had any hihihi). All of us were in high spirits and wanted to win so badly. If we cannot win the fastest team, we are going to try best dressed team, if we didn't win that one, we are going to try best team selfie/wefie. I never met a group that was so eager to win and will do whatever possible ways in securing one. 

Attractive prizes
No bib just band
We going to make a grand appearance, a day that people cannot forget. Ridwan bought necessary materials few days prior. Somehow we forgot about sword. Night before the race day, I went to Warta/Giant Bangi and bought swords toy. I also bought inner shirt for Munir and myself as we didn't want to go topless. 
Flashing sword! Slash, slash, flash ehh
Time to pay!
Inner for shy guys ;)
Race day
Ridwan arrived early and I arrived few minutes later. Ariff and Munir got little bit lost but they made it after following direction given by Ridwan. We prepared ourselves at open space in kompleks renang precint 6. The open space was quite near to surau and people saw us getting ready. We didn't bother with them and proceeded with our preparation. When all good and dandy, we headed to car park under the complex and met Kak Mah. We took photo with her and headed to kompleks sukan air.

The route
Terjumpa. Our 1st photo in costume
Organizer and friends were excited and shocked upon seeing us in our costume, especially at topless duo haha. Six pack hokey haha. Not to mention we were also holding sword toy with us. Since the event hasn't started yet, we withdrew from the main stage and did some warm up. Few local elites and Kenyans were seen warming up too. Small event also got them sigh. Suddenly we saw KJ and his gang walking towards the main stage. We took this opportunity to take photo with him. Few minutes later, a group of people heading to the starting line from the main stage. We hastily walked to the starting line as I told my team beforehand that we must stay at the very front of the line. KJ soon came and stood up in front of us. Snapshots were taken and flag off was done afterwards. Only 2 of our swords were working well as I didn't bring enough batteries. We turned them on and ran with swords emitting blinking light and got sound effect hahaha.

Let's get crazy! Credit to

Waiting for flag off. KJ y'll!
Sempat menyelit ;)
I reminded my team not to go too fast and we maintained our pace at 4-4:30min/km. Few elites and Kenyans overtook us. It was a chilly morning. Running with sword somehow affected the way we swung our hand. It was a burden and disturbed the rhythm. However, the cape we wore became wavy when we ran and it added great effect to our photo haha. We were directed to PICC and the hilly section slowed our pace. Suddenly a pharaoh clad runner overtook us. He was quite fast. Firaun punya firaun LOL. From PICC we run towards Taman Seri Empangan, run under Jambatan Seri Gemilang and headed to the Kompleks again. Few hundred metres from the finishing line, we slowed our pace so Ariff would be able to catch up with us. He was just few metres away from us. Ariff didn't run for weeks and he was struggling in keeping up with us.

Strong finish!
Wefie! An attempt for best wefie contest category
We crossed the line together in 23:49min and my Garmin recorded 5.49km. The TKC crew wrote our time and we were given a tag. No 2 fastest team category winner, oh yeah! No 1 was Pacemaker team and all of them are local elites. We were obviously snail compared to them hahaa. Our mission achieved! We made a grand appearance and yet won the coveted top3 prize . Saw few people looking at us, shocked and amazed, we believed so hahaha. Our team overheard some of them saying wear like this also can ran fast and win. This was my very 1st team podium. I'm so elated and grinning ear to ear. As the team manager, my elaborated plan and strategies worked. All of analysis and tactic not for nothing. TV3 approached us and I asked Ridwan to speak on behalf of us. Masuk TV yeah! Gile femes!

Interview! Femes weh!
We walked around, just to make sure the crowd noticed us. People greeted us and wanted to take photo with us. No need to jual mahal eh. After awhile, I told my team I wanted to go to my car to take my handset. We headed to the parking lot altogether. Again, people greeted and asked for photo. Suddenly, out of nowhere the crew gave us another tag written potential best dressed winner. Woohoo, we were shortlisted for best dressed category. We might got double prize! How awesome was that!

Double winner? ;)
We continued walking and suddenly a guy asked us to get ready to run together with Mr KJ towards finishing line. When we saw him, we ran beside/behind him to the finishing line. Yeay, not everyday you can run beside your minister. Few cameras captured the moment pretty well. We shook his hand and congratulated him.

Let's run with the minister!

Finish strong once again!

Thanks everyone, clap clap
We resumed our mission to the car park. Again, people said hi and asked for photo. We felt like celebrity today, one of a kind. We managed to reach the car park after that. Grabbed our handset, voucher etc. We walked to the race venue, exchanged voucher for food and 'lepak' at the astaka. Few activities were scheduled while waiting for prize presentation. Got MARS insanity (by Acid, Gebs and Nisa), flashmob, zumba, basketball 1 on 1 between KJ with highest scorer charity basketball winner etc. Cat won the 1 on 1 with KJ and won an iPad. Good for him and surprisingly KJ can play basketball well.

1 on 1
Jump, shoot!
For fastest individual/team, the prize was given out by Datin Seri Rosmah Mansur and KJ. It was a wow moment when we were called to receive the prize from them. We won the 2nd prize and 'gaya' as well hahaha. Thus overshadowed other winner hahaha. These costume lads oso can run fast hokey. Datin Seri Rosmah handed us a mock cheque stating RM800 cash. Datin Seri Rosmah and KJ went back after the fastest category prize presentation. The 3rd winner was ACDC team and the winner was Pacemaker group.

Menang! 2nd fastest team woohoo!
The prize presentation session for best dressed and most voted instagram photo was proceeded by TKC representative. We didn't know our fate but we hoped to win this one. Barulah menang gaya betul hahaha. The 3rd winner for best dressed team was a group which all dressed in military suit. Smart! The 2nd winner was us! Woohoo. We ran to the stage and this time we won a nicely wrapped hamper. The winner was a team with Flinstones concept. Their Flinstones ride (prop) was awesome and details.

Our Spartan alter ego won 2nd best dressed!
Side angle. Grin ear to ear!
There, we won big at our 1st competitive team attempt. Our legendary breakthrough. They say 1st time was the hardest and I agree. It was a headache when I was trying to create one. We won 2nd fastest team and also won 2nd best dressed team. Podium y'll. Laju dan bergaya. Other team cannot beat this hahaha. Also got interviewed by TV3, got photo from newspaper/blogger, ran beside KJ, same stage with KJ/Datin Seri Rosmah and people wanted to take pic with us. It was a fame and glory day. We really wanted this and did our best. Hard work paid off. Me as the team initiator/leader felt very proud with this team. We functioned well as a team and everyone played their part. I believed we'll participate more in this kind of event. As a newly formed team, we showed to the running community that we have the potential and they we'll see us often. That's a promise ;)

Winner takes all!
With WARS running group
Animals, pocong and spartan!
Best dressed team winners!
With Aizat, the diva runner ehh (
With speedy Azwan Bunjing ( Our only pic with him and the photographer did a lousy job huhu
Astro Awani! No clear picture huhu

Kosmo online
The Loot

The Loot unveiled!
Read more about the carnival here

The official Facebook account for the event is: 

The official website for the event is:

The official instagram account for the event is: @tkccarnival

RHB (Rashid Harus Berlari) Half Marathon, Bukit Jalil, 080215

I decided to run this race as I believe this was the first time RHB organizes a run. Plus Rashid is part of the original name of RHB hihihi. Since HM is too much for me, I decided to settle for 10k only. Ridwan and Ariff agreed to race as well. Nice, we can pace each other and we had same thing in our mind, to score a personal best. Sort of reunion after our clash of titans back in TM Fan Run.

Our PB Mission
A day prior to this event, my small trio ex-UKM group (KF, Limi and I) decided to hang out. It was part of our once a month hang out day. We spent whole day from am to pm at Ikea-Curve area. We ate, watched movies, played arcade games and karaoke-d. I felt little bit tired from those activities especially the eating part. Too much and my stomach traumatized.

Brunch for three
Sugar rush!
I went to the race venue with my usual accomplice, Aizat Yanan. Warming up and met Ariff and Ridwan doing so. We entered the pen early and standing not far from the first queue line. The flag off was done a little late and our trio ran quite near to each other. Learning from my previous mistake, I ran accordingly. Decided not to run all out, gung ho style after the flag off. No sub4 pace for early km. After 3 or 4km, Ariff couldn't keep up with us any longer. He didn't run for two months and this pace took its toll on him. I ran side by side with Ridwan. At 7km, I felt like I can go a little bit faster, leaving Ridwan behind. Saw Adele running not far from me. I befriended her on social medias few weeks ago and this was my 1st encounter with her. I said hi and continued my running. 10k runners merged with HM runners after u-turn. Azmi cheered and shouted my name from behind and I replied without looking. I sprinted when it's about 50m from finishing line. I stopped my FR610 and I was shocked seeing the stat. I didn't score my personal best even though I felt like I ran strong for the last 3km. Weird enough. I did 10.3km in 46:59, average pace of 4:34min/km.

My race timing
Ridwan crossed the finishing line few seconds later and Ariff did so after a minute. Our PB mission was a total failure but we didn't feel so bad about it. We didn't train as hard as before and we vowed to do our best in the next run. I mingled around and took photos before heading home.

MARDI runners!
Group whatsapp The Spartan!

Usual suspects