Friday, October 10, 2014


I have been undergoing vigorous training; from speedwork, drills to LSD to prepare myself for very exciting races in the final quarter of the year. There were the 4km KL Rat Race, 10km Putrajaya Night Run Corporate Challenge, 42km Standard Chartered KL Marathon, 12km Great Eastern Live Great Run & last but not least stamping my mark on the new Penang Bridge for another 42km full marathon.

Being an avid runner, you can't help but to feel pumped up with such an exciting schedule. But being mere mortal, I succumbed to injury.

It was early September, I was running around 9pm, clocking my 4.0km time. I was blazing it at a 4"/km pace, & pretty sure I'm going to clock under 17 minutes for that distance. Unfortunately over the 2km mark, I was running along the road shoulder and suddenly a bike dash towards me, I evaded but slipped and landed awkwardly on uneven ground. I thought, "Nah, I can run through the pain". I did and still managed to clock 17"24 over 4km despite hurting myself earlier. The following day, I played football, I suffered a knock on the same left leg I sprained the day before. Being stubborn again the following morning I ran 10km - to my horror after that my left knee were locked. I couldn't walk normally, I could barely sleep because it hurts so badly.

Still being stubborn, 2 weeks since the insidious weekend it was KL Rat Race. Leading the OCBC team, with an enthusiastic bunch of teammates - I hate that I may let them down because I wasn't at top condition and this was such an anticipated event. I ran through the pain, clocked 17"48 over 4.27km and our team emerged 2nd runner up for the Open Category. 

From L-R in red : OCBC Team A - Weng Khong, Gin, Kirk, Marvin & myself

Call me kiasu or foolish, but I thrive for victories and I hate to lose. After merely 4km, my knee hurts - again. I decided it was time to get it checked. 

It was timely. I seen an orthopedic, did MRI scan and he confirmed that I have torn my lateral meniscus. 

As horror glooms, I started throwing him a lot of questions. Will I be able to run again? If yes, how soon? Do I need surgery? What can I do to fix this?

Meniscus are crescent-shaped cartilages that serve as shock-absorbents between you femur (thigh bone) and tibia (shin bone).

He told me I need to shy away from physical exercises that exert high pressure to the knees for at least 3 weeks, if it is still not healed then - surgery is required. It has been 2 weeks now, but I am feeling great. I took a couple non-surgical measures to speed up my recovery that you may consider trying too if you have been diagnosed with similar condition,

  1. Consume Glucosamine
    - it serves as a building block for synovial fluids that lubricate joints and promote healthy cartilages.
    Those with certain medical condition should consult their physician before use
  2. Acupuncture
    - the meniscus actually have minimal blood supply, hence acupuncture enhance blood circulation to the injured meniscus area to promote rapid healing
    Elephant thighs
So, this Saturday I have a 10km Putrajaya Night Marathon and the following morning 42km Standard Chartered KL Marathon. Though I may feel as if I am fine to run (or just pumped with adrenaline), I have decided that I will not run the 42km full marathon.

This full marathon is supposed to be my 9th, which was registered early of the year. The fulfillment that comes with completing a full marathon is divine. Just ask the people who has done it. I want to feel divine again, I want to overcome the adversities and conquer the grueling distance but circumstances disallow it.

After many get-well wishes, supportive words and advises from loved ones (you know who you are) which I am utterly grateful of, I pondered;
  • Is this the only chance I will ever have to run KL Marathon?
  • Is this the only chance I will ever have to run a marathon?
  • Will I lose any form of sponsorship if I did not start?
  • Am I required to start to get an appearance fee?
All of the answers to the foregoing are all NO. I just can't bear the fact of aggravating the injury on my precious knee, I still would want to chase my kids around or at least play football with them. If you are currently suffering some health condition, which may be more or less severe than mine, I would suggest you mellow down on such physical activities. Allow your body to do its magic en route to recovery.

A self-reminder; Pull the brake, miss a marathon now for many more marathons ahead. Sounds lovely, doesn't it?

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