Triathlon is my usual topic when it comes to writing. In the running circle you could say I am like a fish out of water. But there is something special about running that I am rediscovering with gleeful (and painful) abandon.
Still trying to switch off from attempting to race any triathlon this year my focus is work. But when you work in a healthy positive environment the enthusiasm rubs off and I find myself wanting to be fit and stay active even if there is no ‘big’ race on the horizon.
After struggling last year to run due to injuries that sidelined me for the better part of 6 months, combined with circumnavigating the globe a few times, the body can get rather weary. My body gets really weary. But we need to have a goal, something achievable and for me, that usually translates as something that requires endurance – and lots of it!
And so as I spend my time collecting stamps in my passport and meeting and covering triathlon events around the world, the one simple act that I can do when waking up in a different hotel room each week, is run.
Not only does it keep you mentally sane and sets you up for a great day of productive work it is a great way to explore the city you are visiting.
While I would love to take a bike with me on my travel, it is just not possible. Especially since these days I have taken to packing ultra light and opting carry on style – no more lost bags!
So you see running is the best form of an endorphin outlet I can subscribe to. But we need a goal right? (Well I do).
I have always tried to include one particular running event in my yearly calendar. The Laguna Phuket International Marathon (LPIM) is Asia’s fastest growing destination marathon. It has not only become a staple on my schedule it is also a time of year when I go away for a long weekend, switch off from work and meet up with friends who likewise assemble from around the world at this wonderful event.
It is hard to take LPIM too seriously – even for myself a self-confessed ultra competitive person. Why? Because you are running in paradise. The combination of the Laguna Phuket location, coupled with the ever friendly faces of the warm Thai people make this ‘race’ one of the most enjoyable running experiences you could ever sign up for.
I usually only do the half marathon. In fact (Ironman races aside) I have only ever done one full marathon. So just the other day I thought to myself… “I have 10 weeks. (Race day is June 10th) I can run 25km at the moment – so why not go for the full?”
Pain, discomfort, chaffing and more pain, discomfort and chaffing never really entered my head. Rather it was the word “Challenge”. And hey – lets go see if I can get a PB – are more of the thoughts that were bouncing around!
Now if I had had this conversation with myself after I did a follow up 25km last Sunday after 3 weeks of travel to the USA and Australia I may have taken a different view on the “why not do the full?”
But training is now in full swing – well as good as it gets with travel and commitments and I am actually (today) really looking forward to stepping it up and doing my second ever marathon in one of my most favourite places in Asia.
And I know I won’t be alone in my return. The Japanese also have LPIM on their yearly radar and this year alone there are over 200 athletes flying over, making Japan the largest international group to represent. Last year there were athletes from 45 countries taking part.
The race is now in it’s 7th year and has been growing year-by-year. If the full marathon is too much to think about, then there is a half and if that is too much there is a 10.5km run, a 5km community walk and a 2km children’s race.
So there you have it, I need to rest up now as a 27 km training run is on my schedule for tomorrow morning. You can find out how I get on post race (I am assuming the pain will not extend to my typing fingers). Or you can sign up yourself and come on over and experience Run Paradise for yourself. I guarantee - you won’t regret it!
Registration is open until June 2nd 2012. For more information on the event, special deals with Laguna Resorts and Hotels and to register go to www.phuketmarathon.com.
*Following the 8.7 magnitude earthquake that occurred on April 10th - a message from Debbie Dionysius, Assistant Vice President Destination Marketing for Laguna Resorts & Hotels.
The well-being of our guests is our top priority and Laguna Phuket is vigilant and prepared for any urgent situation that may arise. Phuket now has a comprehensive tsunami alert system in place and we are confident that any emergency situation would be dealt with swiftly and effectively. Our tropical surroundings and beach-side location make Laguna Phuket a magical place to run a marathon – that’s why our event is Asia’s fastest growing destination marathon.