Saturday, 16 February 2013

Seven Days to Go

Students decorated these inflated figures for the marathon
There's one more week to go until the Standard Chartered Hong Kong Marathon 2013 and I'll be in it this year running the 10K.

I ran 10K before back in Beijing in 2007 and 2008 so I thought it was time to see if I can still do it. Another big motivator was being able to sign up online back in November as it took me an hour to get into the website with so many people trying to register at the same time.

Collecting running kits for the 10K run next Sunday
And now I'll be running with some 33,000 other people -- in the 10K.

I was instructed to pick up my running kit today at Victoria Park and there was a huge set up there with tents and crowd control barriers to keep queues in line.

There were lots of people there, but participants triaged into the three different races -- 10K, half marathon and marathon. From there the lines went relatively fast with groups of people going to different numbered stations, each with several volunteers putting race kits together.

We got our race bag to put our stuff in the day of the race, along with our T-shirt, bib with the time chips on them, four safety pins, our baggage tag and booklets with information.

This woman is desperately trying to prove her core is in shape
Then we were herded off to the "expo" area where the sponsors had tents, though there wasn't much interesting going on. There were long lines to see how fit people were -- isn't that a bit too late to make that assessment now? And also determine their running style, if they pronated or not. And then on stage were groups of young kids in the cheering team competition to see who were the best cheerleaders.

Off to the side was a giant inflatable "rock" for children to climb and then a bunch of inflated figures each decorated differently. They are part of the "Run for a Reason" Design Campaign. Apparently almost 1,000 students designed 400 of the 1.2m-tall figures to promote perseverance. I never knew a flaming head was a symbol of determination... while I didn't quite understand the one with fiery eyes, I liked the band aids taped on its legs with words of encouragement.

One fiery runner with band aid legs
I also don't get this "Run for a Reason" thing... when I signed up for the race, I was asked to choose my reason for running, and among the options that included for my health, one was for the environment. Why would I run for the environment?

Anyway, inside the booklet there are instructions of how to get to the venue and where our bags will be stored during the race. The records of the winners are also published and it's quite shocking to find a Hong Kong woman completed the 10K in 34 minutes! It's going to take me at least double that!

Nevertheless, there are some promotions from sponsors, like information on Physical, the gym, nutrition bars and how you can get official photographs of reaching the finish line.

But perhaps the most bizarre promotion is from Maxim's, where you can order a cake with the Standard Chartered Hong Kong Marathon 2013 logo with your name and bib number and the race that you ran. And you could get the rectangular cake in either chocolate mousse or mango mousse. And it's HK$168 for a 1lb cake or HK$336 for 2lbs.

This kid checks out the hair of one inflated figurine...
Do I really want to eat a cake after running for my health? I don't think so...

No comments:

Post a Comment