Sunday, June 12, 2016

Something Fun with the Watermelon Relay

I wouldn't call this post a race report but since there is a lot of fun in it, I'll just call it something fun

It is still a race, but not the ordinary Half Marathon or Marathon that I usually put up. In this case, a relay race of 3 in a team with a minimum of one female runner and and and... you carry a watermelon as the team's relay baton :D

Story started with Nick receiving one complimentary slot for the race  and asked within the usual suspects forming a team. Race day is right smack at the height of our training for Gold Coast Airport Marathon and running a 3.4 KM loop with a watermelon would really throw a spanner into the training program. Being a good spot (actually being lazy), I thought running a 3.4 KM escaping from what would be a 16KM - 20KM training day wasn't a bad idea and so I told Nick "Onz". Since we need a female runner Yan Leng (YL) being a lazy bum, raised her hand too joining the bandwagon for some fun, after all is just 3.4KM how hard would it be? Boy I was dead wrong!!!

We met up early on race day and had planned for a pre-run around the race course just to warm up the legs, checking out the route as well as clocking in some important mileage. As we did the pre-run, we checked ourselves in without knowing the team name and which race category hahaha.. collected our "baton" which feels like a 2.5kg - 3 kg watermelon, put it back in the car and continue with the pre-run. Not until we run the route, little did we realize the first KM was actually quite hilly and definitely not going to be an easy one especially carrying the "baton". After the pre-run, we got back to our car and get ourselves ready for the race.

There were 2 categories of the race one being the Challenge category which would start 15mins earlier than the Fun category which we are racing in. As Nick was just recovering from a knee injury and would like to take things a littler easier and run the first leg leaving YL (2nd) and Me (last) doing the catching up on his he says.  With a not so shabby plan, Nick quickly line up at the start line with other Fun category participants while we take a few vain shots of him at the start line. Ready, set, go!!! Nick was speeding like a bullet.. and he says wanted to take it easy

15 to 16 mins later by my account, Nick completed the loop leading the pack (heck why am I not surprised) passing the "baton" to YL and she did the same stunt speeding like a bullet. Nick catching his breath complaining about how heavy the "baton" became as the distance goes and there were no one best way to carry the melon, one would simply have to keep switching from arm to arm, position to position to carry on. Nevertheless, it was still a solid run from him considering his recovery.. oh wait did I tell you he ran an easy 4:30 min hilly section, yes he did!!

With around the same amount of time taken, YL came back fast still leading the pack and looking fresh wanting for more haha. I wasn't going to let her do that, before the organizer DQ us, I quickly snatched the " baton" away from her and trying to mimic the speeding bullet of Nick and YL. The first KM was really hard not just because of the hilly section, it is also because how slippery the melon was and making sure it doesn't drop itself is challenging. With the weight and alternating ways of carrying the melon, it actually restrained me from swing my arm in my usual running form. As a result of that, my running rhythm went  down south quickly and started catching my breath heavily even before finishing the first KM. I then realized, it is not easy and not the fun run that I was expecting for. Don't get me wrong, the race is still fun just that you need to work hard for 3.4 km to extract the fun out of the race :D

Luckily, soon enough for me the watch beeped completing the first km and I'm done with the hilly section and now to run the remaining distance consistently. Nahhh... I walked, yes was forced to walk a bit due to the lack of upper body strength carrying the melon running the whole course. At times, I had to hold it on top of my head to relief some pressure off the arms and let the head do the work. At that point of time, I lost count of how many runners I overtook and which leg they were running, but one thing I'm sure of, is no one has overtook me which mean I'm leading the pack thanks to Nick "recovery" run and YL speeding bullet

After running the last turn, I can see from afar both of them waiting for me at the pit stop. Pit stop? Pit stop = You stop at a designated section of the race course, cut the melon into half and team would need to finish the melon before allow to cross the finishing line. I knew the second team wasn't too far behind, quickly I ran into the pit stop and the 3 of us start eating the melon like we have been starved for weeks. With me still catching my breath, Nick and YL had to do the heavy duty work eating most of the melon while I only took a few spoonful, but no complaints there the melon was juicy, sweet and delicious to say the least. Finally, we excavated the whole melon and did out final 50m dash, crossing the finishing line 1st !!!!

It was my first podium since 23 years ago and my first for anything more than 200m :D. The race was fun and you do need to do a little bit of work to extract it out and enjoy. Now when's the Durian relay race??? Thanks to Nick and YL as usual putting up their best performance to put me back into the podium albeit a fun run, but it is still a podium :D 

Photo courtesy by Jeanie, Foo and Nick


  1. Wow, I completely forgotten we ran this... Hahaha! But I had fun la and also happy with our victory 😁

    1. I know I'm slow in posting blogpost la..give cahnce la

    2. I know I'm slow in posting blogpost la..give cahnce la


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