A few days ago, I was contacted by Fulford Public Relations (I hope I got that right!) who asked if I would give them permission to pass on my phone number to the Berita Harian (Singapore’s newspaper for the Malay community) regarding my 4th participation in the Sundown Marathon.
I was rather surprised by the request (these things don’t happen to me very often), and I said alright, why not? The next few days of suspense were quelled by a phone call from the reporter on a Saturday afternoon, who asked me a range of questions (who, what, why, when).
I took this opportunity to mention my recent endeavor at the Sabah Adventure Challenge, in the hopes I can help to spread the interest of trail running, and the experiences that come with taking part in such a challenge.
Click the link before for the article in English. It is also available on the Berita Harian website (tho in Malay).
[expand title=”Article in English” tag=”p”]
Azlan participates in races because other sports were ‘not interesting’ By ZAINAL JAMARI
SOME people like to run for exercise for health. Then there are others who play sports for losing weight.
However, Azlan Ithnin became active in running as he found no other activity that was “interesting to me” after undergoing National Service (NS).
“During his National Service, I would often train at night to pass my 2.4 kilometers test. So after leaving the camp, there was no other activity that interests me.
“Then, I started running,” said the 25-year-old, who will take part in the event Sundown Marathon on May 31.This is not the first time he is participating in the event which covers 42 kilometers starting at midnight.
“This is the fourth time. The first was in 2010, then 2011 and most recently last year,” said Azlan, an employee of the National University of Singapore (NUS) who is also a pursuing part-time degree in the field of Exercise and Sports Science at Edith Cowan University.
For Azlan, who likes to train in the evenings around Kent Ridge after work, running an event that starts at midnight felt suitable for him.
“I enjoy training at night, after the completion of work, two or three days a week. It gave me a kind of peace,” he said.
Azlan said he was not very interested in any other sport, despite playing football in school.
His interest in football is now limited to support Liverpool, the English Premier League club.
In his first marathon, Azlan clocked 5 hours and 26 minutes. He improved it to 5:01 hours following year and last year, clocked 4 hours 49 minutes.
For this event, Azlan has not set any goals, but hope to at least equal to or better last year’s timing.
Besides the Sundown event, Azlan had competed in the Standard Chartered Marathon in 2010 and 2011 ,and the half marathon in 2009.
His interest in running events led him to take part in the Sabah Adventure Challenge recently.
According to him, the event involves running as far as 75 kilometers to be completed within three days.
“It was very challenging, but I was able to finish it within the stipulated time,” he said.
Another thing about Azlan is that he trains and joints these events alone.
“I do have friends, but they were not interested in participating in events such as marathon running.
“I am used to running alone and in nature, participating in running events this alone too,” he said, adding that no one else in his family is involved in running sports.
Meanwhile, registrations for Sundown Marathon 2013 will close on April 30 and those who have not registered are urged to do immediately.
This is because about less than 5000 places are available.
They can register on the site http://www.sundownmarathon.com/
Three race categories – 10km, half marathon and full marathon – will be held.
The entry fee for three events are $55, $65 and $85 respectively.