What a relief! The Walk has finally over and we are back to our normal life. Some were happy and some were disappointed with their results. To me, the fact that we were at the starting line of the 24-hour walk was indeed commendable! We are brave to do what normal people think is impossible. At this point, we are already the WINNERS!
Let me share with you, participants and non-participants, my experience during the race.
Having participated twice before, I knew it would be tough and needed a lot of preparation. I managed to clock a total of 700 minutes (11H 40M) of walking since I started in 13th July. Low mileage but better than nothing!
Upon arrival, we were welcome by the thick mist, strong wind and a light drizzle at the peak of Genting Highland. Not a very good sign!
We saw some participants setting up their camping tents near their cars. What a brilliant idea! However, later at night, I noticed that nobody actually slept in it. Who would sleep anyway in the cold and wet outdoor?
We quickly reported ourselves, prepared the BIB and tied the timing chip to our shoes.
While waiting for the start, as usual, we chit-chatted and took photos with fellow friends, competitors and the mascots. Everyone seemed to be very relaxed. After a short technical briefing, we were gunned off at 12.00noon on the 18th Sep. Unlike the running events, we were in no hurry to push ourselves to our limits. Slow and steady is the key!
Needless to say, I was overtaken by the international-standard walkers and the relay teams. So envy and wonder if they were made of steel? Are they Ultraman, Superman or robots?
As time went by, everything seemed to become our challenges. First was the boredom. There were some walkers who sang along with their walkman or MP3. Suddenly, you could find “Anita Mui” or “Sammy Cheng” taking part in the Walk. There was one lady who has probably “lost” her way to her church. She sang hymns from the Bible. As for me, I would accompany my wife whenever I could to chat, sing and even dance with her! Ha! Ha! Ha!
We had plenty of food and drink to replenish ourselves. Kudos to the organizer! No wonder I didn’t lose any weight even after so many hours of walking.
Official results were efficiently announced and displayed every 3 hours except the last 3 hours where it became every hourly. What a major improvement from the previous years! So every 3 hours, we participants would be excitedly gathering at the big white board to see the latest update of our ranking and the number of laps we had covered. It reminded me to those people who looking up at the numbers in a 1+3D outlet!
After some time, the chilly weather and the strong wind made me felt like crying. Oh dear! I missed the hot temperature in Kuala Lumpur already!
To make the matter worse, the terrain was undulating and uneven. There was one steep down slope which I think had “killed” many walkers.
Gradually, I felt my left shoulder and both legs were not co-operative anymore. My inner thighs, heels, toes, knees and the back of the knees one-by-one failed me. Pain! Pain! Pain! To add to my misery, I had a big blister on my left heel.
Thanks but no thanks to our St John Ambulance. When I pleaded for a massage and a pin to poke the water out of the blister, what they could offer was only a bag of ice cube and some plasters. And I had to DIY myself!
At 4.21am, the mist was so heavy that I bumped into a rubbish bin which I think was intentionally put in the middle of our path so that we stayed awake all the time! The wake-up call obviously told me that I was too tired and painful to continue my journey. I sadly called for a long break and ended prematurely.
I woke up at 5.30am inside my car. I realized then the rain became heavier. My heartfelt salute those who were still walking under such challenging condition. And, I thought I had made a wise decision to stop early.
After freshening up, I stayed on to cheer the walkers. At 12.00noon, 19th Sep, the gun went off again signaling the end of the 3rd edition of the 24-hour Walk.
I was glad that I managed to cover 89 laps or 77.9km in position 52 and my wife 153 laps or 133.96km in 6th position.
We would like to congratulate the following persons for their outstanding result and good spirit:
Men:- Keshab – 144 laps/ Alan Tiang – 133/ PK Chan – 130/ Tey Eng Tiong – 127/ Law Lai Huat – 120/ Tan Khee Meng – 94/ Siah Leong Hooi – 79/ Bruce Wun – 64
Women:- Wong Ha Mooi – 127 laps/ Lim Peck Yah – 123
Team:- Pace Walker (Francis, Melvin, Sook Ying, Huat’s sister) – 4th placing
Pace Setter Gasing (SK Goh, Ken Kan, Teresa & Carol) – 7th placing
and all the other walkers and friends.
Sayonara! See you in 2007.
Click here for Tey's report on the event.