Saturday, November 1, 2008

Mud Run 2007

The first distance race - Mud Run 10k
June, 2007

Discovery of the mud run race
I have always been loving nature, photography and hiking. It was just another day of googling for conservation area for weekend hiking, I came across a website called "Mud Run". It seems to be a 10k race on trails with some obstacles added on the course. Not having a clue what I would need and expect for a distance running race, I decided to give it a shot as I thought it is just a faster and long distance of hiking.

I thought I was fit?
I have never done any distance running before but I started to play various sports such as basketball, soccer and ultimate frisbee. Although I was a beginner and sucked big time in all of them, but I was known for my short burst speed, which sometimes worked well in defense and getting steals/rebounds in basketball. Considering I've been playing these sports for a few months, I thought running races was no big deal.

Race day
Surfing shorts, cotton socks and a pair of moc shoes were what I put on myself for this race, a receipt leads to disaster, now look back the only appropriate clothing I had was my polyester tank top. I arrived the site by myself and just followed whatever the organization crew said, went to pick up a piece of paper with a number on it and also a plastic thing called time chip, I didn't know what it was for, the staff explained it is something that could record down my race time. "What do I do with these stuff?" I had to look at what other people did, pin the bib number to the front of my shirt and secured the timechip on my ankle. I started to get nervous, I don't have a clear picture what to expect with a 10 trail race since I have never done any 10k or not even a 5k.

Race of mistakes
I've decided I would start slow and just power walk from time to time. the conservation atmosphere is quite familiar since I go out hiking a lot, the only difference is that we were running instead of walking and going for a much longer distance. When running on flat, many people passed me, I felt I didn't have the stamina to keep up with them, so I didn't bother and I walked a lot. I only shine when there were hills, obstacles and other terrains. I guess I am still like a kid who enjoys those. The big surprise for me was that we have to cross several rivers... "Oh no!! I can't swim and I wasn't wearing a life jacket!!" lucky they weren't that deep at all, I was able to cross them without drowning. After crossed a few of them, I realized the biggest mistake I have make - my socks and my shoes. The stupid moc shoes (or stupid me) was the best water cup, the water doesn't come out at all! with the assistance of my thick cotton socks, it feels like extra 10 pounds have addedon my feet and it was very very uncomfortable to run with. After the 5k mark, I stopped, removed my shoes and pour the water out, then I removed my socks - 2nd biggest mistake. The last half 5k I was running without socks, ev
ery step I take the skin on back of my feet were rubbing against the shoe, the chafing contributed to my next pain - soon the skin around my achilles tendon started bleeding. I tried to ignore the pain as I run and walk... I remember near the last 2k or so there was a tunnel we had to go through, my bleeding feet were saved as I put my feet into the cold water under the tunnel. I reserved some of my energy for the last sprint to the finish line - wrong again! it was "the mud run".. the mud pit was there before the finish line, you could never really run on the mud. I tried it, then my foot was sucked into the mud, as I pulled it out, I've lost my shoes in the mud! I had to waste some time in digging out my shoes before crossing the finish line.

I got addicted to races
So that was my first race, what a disaster! after a few days I saw the results online. Not too surprised, I was below average, on the back of the pack :-(
145  1830 Felix Wu               1:28:53 SOLOM     89/148     89  8:54     
It wasn't a pleasant experience but it was some challenge, I've decided I'll sign up for more races, try again... maybe if I try more, I'll be at least average one day?!

Friday, October 31, 2008


Why blogging?

Finally I have started writing about my running. This is after I have finished my first marathon, first half marathon and various other races.

It took me so long to start this blog because of:
- I am just too lazy, I don't think I would be updating it or writing race reports on regular basis.
- Unlike most blogs, I'll probably be writing stuff in the past rather than present.
- People may get sick of reading my posts with LOTS grammar errors.

However, if I don't record down these experiences, I may forget them soon. I hope you would enjoy my running journey as much as I do.

Running Background:

Ran 100m and 200m during elementary school and junior high, never thought I could do any race beyond a 400m lap.

Joined track team in high school but quit after a month - will post a story about this.

Between Jun., 2007 - Nov., 2007 I entered a few races, but I wasn't running on regular basis, the most I did was went out to run a 3k-6k twice the week before the race. So I don't consider myself officially started running until the beginning of this year.

Years of running: 0.916 - Since Jan, 2008
Years of running ultra: 0 - to be added (hopefully)

I run because...

- I love the feeling of sprinting to the finish line
- I believe we were created to run!
- To explore and extend my limits
- To get a closer look of our environment
- To use car as less as possible (less chance getting pissed off)
- To save $ from public transit :-)