Monday, February 4, 2008

KL Towerthon 2008

Last Sunday I went to visit the Kl Tower for the first time. Being a Malaysian staying in the Klang Valley, I’m sometimes a bit embarrassed that I haven’t even visited a landmark so close at home. However my first visit was a real challenge, because I did not take the lift up the tower. I ran. All 2058 steps to the deck. I probably did a lot of walking too, but I was too light headed to notice.

All I can say is that the KL Towerthon is a great workout for your cardiovascular system, legs and bum. It beats any Stepmaster machine in the gym or squat exercises. You will struggle to breathe, and fresh air will feel so good. You will zone out, seeing nothing but steps, steps, and more steps. In the end, your legs will feel like jelly and you will wobble. But you will feel proud that you reached the top.

I was almost a no-show because frankly, nobody wants to get up on a Sunday and run up a tower at 6.30 in the morning when it’s raining. But I paid RM20 for it, and I couldn’t let my running buddies down! So it ended up with us at the starting line, slightly soaked and losing momentum because it took so long to flag off our group of runners. There were 15 minute intervals between groups and we were in the third batch. Any warm up we did had dissipated.

The kilometer uphill leading to the tower proved to be quite exhausting. I was cold, my muscles weren’t ready for it, and my legs felt like solid lead. I think that stretch really spaced the field out.

The first few floors were quite bearable, but I could feel my leg muscles start to work overtime. My thighs were getting tight and tense, and I was sweating profusely even though the stairwell was well ventilated. By the time I reached the 16th floor I was gasping for air and dreading the remainder of the climb. I had no idea how many floors there were to go, and somehow not every level is labeled. I had no choice but to just keep going. It wasn’t really that bad once I got used to the rhythm, but my mood was spoilt by some inconsiderate people who threw empty bottles and bottle caps from above. One hit my head and really got my nerves going. Why did they have to throw anything at all? This ugly side of Malaysians really reared its head big time.

The view from the observation deck was really quite nice. As it was cloudy and cold, it kind of felt like I was in Genting especially when it got all foggy and white outside. I just pitied some of the tourists who had to share space with a few hundred sweaty participants!

The Towerthon was quite a fun experience and not as tiring as normal road runs due to the short duration. It’s like a short sustained burst of energy rather than a long burn that tests your stamina. I did it in about half an hour, which I think is average. The winner did it in less than 14 minutes. Crazy bugger.

Good as it was, I’m not sure if I want to do it again, hehe. Suffer la.

No comments: