After the last TNF Run series in Jul, everyone were eagerly waiting for the news on the first TNF Progressive Run. It was to be held in the Tampines Bike Trail, on 20 Aug. As I was still recovering from my CDR's exertion, I decided to listen to my doctor and rest. Instead of running, I volunteered to take photos for the event. So even though I didn't get to run, I could still enjoyed the nice scenery found in the bike trail. :)
I reached the Tampines Bike Trail at exactly 0800hrs and found my other Run Leaders already there, less John Ling. There were about 40 over runners in total. I took my bib - a very lucky number #8 - from Shu Ming. After a brief introduction by Dirt Traction's Hui Min (the organiser), the run was flagged off. As Tekko and I were "out-of-action", we walked the trail instead. Then, I told him what had happened on Monday after my visit to Changi Sports Clinic. Basically, I limped to the shuttle pick-up point. I was unable to bend my knee. Or rather, every time I had to bend my knee, I would take a long time to bend it and then straighten it. A fellow patient waiting at the shuttle pick-up point asked me what happened and I explained to her. She encouraged me to visit her chinese sinseh at the 中華 medical hall in CGH, which I happened to know was just next to the Changi Sports Clinic. I decided to give it a try since I had nothing to loose. The doctor was kind enough to accept my walk-in request.
When my turn came, she asked me what caused the pain and looked at my knee. She muttered the words "一蹋胡塗" (which meant my knee "cannot make it") to her assistant and other medical terms which I didn't understand. Another assistant then prepared the floor by putting layers of papers. The doctor then instructed me to stand on the papers before she administered 2 pokes of the needles onto the side of my right knee. It was not painful but I wasn't prepared to see what happened next. Blood flowed out gently and slowly from my knee onto the paper. It was dull red in color - didn't look like the blood that you see when you went for blood donation drive, which was bright red in color. After about 20mins, it was done. I thought I was going to faint but I didn't. After the assistant helped to clean off the blood stain on my leg and applied the antiseptic cream on my wounds, I was ready to put on my shoes. My first step after the session felt intensely great! I didn't feel any pain and I could walk freely! That Sat was 6 days after I saw the chinese sinseh and 2 days after my 2nd session with her. Although I felt ready to run, I assured my Run Leaders that I would only attempt a jog during the Progressive Run.
After I finished relating my experience, I left Tekko and took a left turn where the runners would be running towards my direction for their first loop. Along the way, I met some bikers and didn't have to wait long for the first runner. I walked further up to plant myself under some trees canopy, which I thought would provide a unique photo opportunity. Unfortunately, the lighting was too dim and most photos turned out blur. I even had to make Michael Kang to run past me a few times as I didn't manage to capture his photos. Luckily, he was gamed enough to oblige. :p I then retrieved my steps to another location as the runners were supposed to do a clockwise loop for the 2nd loop. This meant that the fast runners would pass me really soon which they did, and I was too slow to capture them. :( From that point, it was rather fun as I had to look to my left for the fast runners embarking on their 2nd loop and slow runners on their way to finish their 1st loop. Somehow, I didn't feel like I was in Singapore as the trail was markedly different from other trails in Singapore. Another runner - Soo Eng - made the same remark that you hardly find such trails in Singapore. :) I was happy whenever these runners waved and posed for me.
For the 3rd loop, it was the same as the 1st loop, i.e. run around the bike's trail in an anti-clockwise direction. I sms to Tekko to confirm the number of runners as I didn't want to be left inside the trail although the distance back to the start/finish point was not that far. Apparently, most runners would run the full 3 loops. But the truth was, there weren't many. If I were to run, I wouldn't be so motivated as I disliked running in loops. 15km of trail in a single loop was much better than 3 loops of 5km, no matter how stunning the scenery was. :p Nevertheless, I decided to make my way back slowly. The weather was extremely good. It was cool, no sun, and kind of windy (as it looked like it was going to rain). Then, I saw Molly and Brokie making their way back to the start to complete their 2nd loop. There were about 10 over runners who went back for the 3rd loop at my next stop, and a few who ran past me to complete their 15km run. Soon, Molly and Brokie came towards me but they were walking! Apparently, they decided to just do 2 loop as they had run to and from Eco Green before the Progressive Run. SLACKER!!! :p The 3 of us chit-chat and waited for the runners before taking a stroll back.
TNF staff gave out packets of goodie bags to all registered runners. It comprised of a car decal, 2 GU Gels, 1 GU electrolyte, 1 medicated patch, 2 blisters shield patches, 1 TNF $50 voucher, Jump Start (which according to Michael Kang, worked wonders for distances of at least half marathon and above). A lucky draw was also conducted and 3 prizes of vouchers for purchase of sunglasses were given out. But I wasn't so lucky to win the lucky draw although I had a lucky #8 bib. :( Overall, it was a well organised run. There were clear markings along the route. There was also a cyclist riding around to ensure no one was lost. :) I looked forward to the Progressive Run 2 which would be held on 10 Sep, although it seemed to be a tad too early for me to participate again. Nevertheless, I would be patient and would give myself as much time as I need to recover fully before I start running. Otherwise, I might end up getting worse and requiring even more time to get back to my pre-injury fitness, which was something I would avoid at all cost. :) Meanwhile, I hoped you guys enjoy your running as I enjoy my time-off recovering.