Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Mr Colin Chua - From losing weight to sub 3 hours in Standard Chartered Marathon 2015 race (Part 2)

By Saranniya

Coming up : Andreas Wenger, from 3hr 07min to sub-3hours in three international marathon races. 

Colin Chua - The past

Colin Chua - Driving force is Lim Thow Wee

Just like most of us out there, there is always this one person who encouraged and motivated you to start off something and you become successful, later on. For Mr Colin Chua his running career started due to Mr Lim Thow Wee's  (an avid runner) constant encouragement to lose  weight and lead an healthy lifestyle.

Slowly over the time Mr Colin Chua, lost  weight and moved on to marathon. Initially, his target was just to complete a marathon  but later on he had a big goal. The goal was to complete a marathon within three hours.

Coach Rameshon shared with me that since year 2013 Mr Colin has been attempting to go below three hours for a marathon. Finally, after all the constant hard work, determination and dedication Mr Colin Chua completed the Standard Charted Marathon on the 6th of December with a time of 2hr 59min.

During my interview with Mr Colin, he was very grateful to Mr Lim Thow Wee for inspiring him to take up running in the first place. As he also shared with me that he was severely overweight that he actually suffered from high blood pressure. Now that he has picked up running his condition has stabilized.

I strongly believe that his appreciation and gratitude will bring him to further heights and overcome any challenges that comes in his way. Let's wish him all the best and continue to strive to do better in future races. The sky is the limit!

Colin Chua - The current physical condition seeing during run

How does it feel to finally do a sub 3 hours?
Since I ran a 3’09” two years ago (in SCMS 2013), running a sub 3 hours marathon has been my ultimate running goal for the past two years and achieving it was a massive weight off my shoulders.

I had a very difficult build up to the race as almost all of my key training runs and buildup races in the second half of this year went real badly. Travelling this year for work in excess of 120 days to Taiwan, China and HK had left me physically and mentally exhausted. This year, it is common for me to stay in 4 different hotels in 5 days in different cities in China or to take connecting flights from China to Taiwan and then to HK in the space of less than two weeks for several client meetings and events. Still, I kept training on hotel treadmills. There was once when after I just vomited (twice) at the hotel lobby from drinking too much alcohol whilst in China, I still stumbled to the gym to do my run. This is how badly I wanted to run a sub 3 this year!

Nonetheless, to finish this race in not only a personal best time but also in sub-3 hours after such a difficult buildup period seems so surreal!
What kept you going throughout the race?
The support from the Flexitness coaches and fellow Flexifitness team scattered along the route kept me going! Thank you all so much!
How did you find the organization of the race?
-       Distance markers
-       Support along the route
-       Starting pens
It is difficult for me to comment on the accuracy of the distance markers as I deliberately didn’t pay attention to it because I didn’t want to remind myself of how far more I have to run. But they were definitely highly visible so that was good.

The drinks, bananas and gel stations were more adequately stocked up this time so that was excellent too. Cheering though was lacking from the organizers but I agree with Evan that our own Flexifitness Boys, Girls and Coaches more than made up for it!
The starting pens appear to be well organized.

Overall, there is a significant improvement of the organization of the race from the previous year and this is largely due to the feedback mechanism kickstarted by my Team Fatbird buddy Rahul with the organizers of SCMS.  Thank you Rahul!

 Was there any point of the race that was mentally or physically challenging for you?
The last two km of the race was physically challenging as there was a competitor right behind me giving chase while I was desperately trying not to get caught. The shout from Thow Wee 50m from the finish gave me a boost and that resulted in me still being able to put in a sprint to the finish line despite the onset of muscle cramps. Thank you Thow Wee!

Mentally, I was fine. There wasn’t a point where I wanted to give up.
What is your next target?
My next target is just to run faster.