By Saranniya Rajendran
In Paris Marathon 2014, Mr Lim Thow Wee did 2hr 48min while running with a belt that had 5 gel on it. It was Mr Thow Wee's personal best time. As for this year, he is ranked 4th so far in Singapore for the year 2014, as at date 27th Oct 2014. Jennifer Quek, on the other hand, was not able to do any personal best in Paris.
However, she did it in Osaka Marathon 2014. Her time was 3hr 45min 27sec. I found out from Coach Rameshon, who just came back from Osaka today at 7pm. He told me that, right from the start, the sun was blazing on the face of the runners. The expected weather of between 8 degrees and 20 degrees centigrade ended with a 25 degrees centigrade finally. Even Eliz, Mr Lim Thow Wee's wife, who came to support and cheer, found the weather hot. Coach Rameshon was perspiring and had to go to the shade and return back to support later on.
We are pleased to hear that at least one of our runners had done it. In Paris, it was Mr Lim Thow Wee who rose to occasion for Flexifitness. Here in Osaka, it was Jennifer's turn. Despite all difficulties that she had to go through in the weather, with iron determination she was confident of doing her personal best in this race. Well Done, Jennifer!
An Interview With Jennifer Quek
Why did you choose Osaka Marathon 2014.
I was not able to do a personal best time in this year's Paris Marathon. So, I decided to run here to do it. I wanted to qualify for the Boston Marathon 2015/2016.
What kind of time were expecting for this race?
I badly wanted to do a time 3hr 30min and 3hr 34min.
Are you happy with your time?
Definitely, with all the problems that we had to go through braving the hot sun. Our Flexifitness fellow runners were severely affected by the weather. After the run, traces of salts was found all over my face.
I was really happy that I have finally done a personal best this year. When Coach Rameshon told me that I was the only one who has done a personal best time, I was praised for achieving my personal best times despite the odds out there.
Can you share with us on the race time as a whole?
In short, I was following the 5min per kilometre pace all the way till the 25km mark, where I started slow down a bit. At the 30km, I realised that it was getting more difficult to get the 3hr 35min time.
However, all the way throughout, I was confident of doing a sub-3hr 48min. At the end of the race, I realised that I did a 3min personal best time.
How was the organisation of the race?
The organisation of the race was very good. The water point and isotonic point was done well. The crowd was great. Many people were cheering for us. The runners were of good quality and I had people who were able to run my pace. I don't have any negative thing to say about this race.
How was the hydration strategy?
I was able to follow Coach Rameshon's advice of the hydration strategy and not to miss any of my drink at any point. I was very careful with the amount of the drink that I have to drink during the race. The drink strategy has helped me a lot in the race?
How was the route?
People say that the route is flat. For me, it was flat but there were some gradual upslope and gradual down slopes that we had to negotiate. There were some U- turn that we had to negotiate. Around 2 to 3 parts we had to face uphills and downhills. However, overall, I am very happy with this route.
What is your next race that you will like to participate in?
I am thinking of going to Tokyo Marathon. Nothing is confirmed yet.