Macau Marathon - DNF is not easy as thought

I was not sure if I wanted to write about this. I actually planned to just bury it and not to mention it at all but after talking to a few friends I changed my mind. They told me to write it out and then get over it. I was actually fine and got over it for some time already but I thought I should also write it to keep it as a memory.

Before that, let me put one selfie first. LOL

Whoa! Who is this handsome dude!

Alright, it was a DNF. If this was an usual DNF I won't be so upset but this wasn't. This DNF was quite unusual, it was a significant one. Yes, I DNF the Macau Marathon due to the injury.

Why was it so significant? It was a race that I had prepared for 25 weeks. Yes, it's not a typo, it's fucking 25 weeks! I can't tell you how I felt the moment I DNF! Although I had been half expecting it I still got hit pretty badly. No words to describe. I think I will just share my training log and it will explain.

My 25 weeks training logs!

You might argue if I really needed to run so much for a 3:10 FM goal (Yes, my goal was 3:10). The answer is relative but most people will tell you don't have to. I agree with them. This training volume to me was quite insane as well. It was a tested schedule that I'd been practising for years and I knew that I could handle it. I'm doing this just because I like to run! It's just part of my kiasu nature. Do I really need to train for 25 weeks? Definitely not too, the 25 weeks was actually for 2 goal runs but SCKLM got cancelled so this made it looked like a 25 weeks plan for Macau only.

Unfortunately, I got injured 3 weeks before the race. I'm inclined to deny that it was because of the high training volume or weak muscles. I know they were part of the reasons but they weren't the triggers.

It happened in one of the weekly #tracktuesday training. I was already on 3 weeks of high mileages training and I did a pretty intense tempo run on that day. Legs were alright after the run but they were very tired. I had always been careful about my post-race activities when my legs were tired. For example I will be super cautious when walking down the stairs. I will walk each step carefully just to make sure my knee can take it before I shift all my body weight on it.

But this time after the run, I was helping one friend to fix thing. I squatted for quite a while and the moment I stood up and turned my body I felt a sharp pain in my left knee. I still didn't realize I got injured until I reach home and stepped out of the car. The pain was serious even just walking. I tried to run a few steps immediately with my slippers on. No matter how I stretch and change the gait the pain didn't go away then I knew I fucked up.

The next day morning, first thing I did was to put my running shoes on and ran! I wanted to see how bad it was. The pain persisted and I couldn't run for more than a few steps! I didn't think much of it because I didn't have much time to waste. I'd only 2.5 weeks left. I went to see orthopedics. Doctor said I tore my ACL! I knew he couldn't do much about it but what I wanted were the pain killer and the anti-inflammation meds.

I did what I could but the pain didn't go away. It got slightly better the week before the race but still I could only bear the pain for about 15km max in the training.

It was a run that I had prepared for almost a year. 25 weeks was just the training part, I actually booked the flight in January and planned for it since then. It was also my annual family trip so I still came to Macau and ran it! I still put a little hope that I could bear the pain and completed it even though I had already adjusted the goal and be prepared for it. I ran until 21km and couldn't continue anymore. I slow jogged and half walked back to the hotel at 28km and took me quite a while to stop the watch. It was actually harder than I thought to press that stop button. I was battling for quite long. Finally I pressed it and yea, a DNF. :(

I was in pretty bad mood and worried about if I could still run the Penang Relay. I wanted to quit the relay very much not because I couldn't run it, I just wanted to keep myself away from any running activities and with this injury I didn't want to drag the team. But knowing Shu Wei was still struggling to find the 12th man, I didn't tell him my decision immediately.

It was a wise decision that I kept myself away from the social media. Just to cool my self down. I spent all my quality time together with my family in the trip. Family is the best medicine! I got over it and things back to normal after a while and I decided to run the relay. It was a very nice lesson to learn. Macau Marathon - I will be back!

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