Most entries are in Japanese (click here to read with translation), but several computer TIPS are in English. I used to study Physics, but worked at a bank in London, Tokyo, and now in Singapore.

Taipei Marathon 2018 - race report

Net time 3:04 (+14 sec for gun time, 1:25:03)

Honestly, very disappointing result as I ran for sub 2:50.
And not even settled in sub 3.

Roughtly similar to previous Nagano, but first half was better this time.

Realised that with my ability in my shoes Adidas Takumi Ren, I can maintain 4 mins/km only up to 25km at most. From nature, my stride impact is strong rather than soft landing, so started to think of Nike's thick sole shoes for long run.

Training in Singapore
Challenge 32 (32km@4:18/km, forgot taking a second gel intake)
Long M pace run, 25km@4:21/km, 30km@4:17/km, 36km@4:23/km
Shufflers interval@83-84sec/400m
Shufflers cruise interval@90-91sec/400m
Long tempo run, 16km@3:57/km, 16km@3:59/km

Gear & wear
Shoes were Adizero Takumi Ren.
Thought this pair should be better to mitigate a fear of cramp, rather than Mizuno wave emperor.
(But after all, got cramp again this time after 31km).
Wore a singlet of my team, shorts with pockets on both sides. Put 4 GU energy gels in pockets (2 for each pockets). The shorts is so thin, so that a package of gel sratches my skin and leave scar. So, I cover the packages using plastic tape like the below picture. 

One thing I realised that energy gels were OK for inflight hand carry. My flight was scoot. From Singapore to Taipei, I put the 5 gels (1 for backup) in check-in luggage. But I put a gel in my in-flight luggage on the way back, and didn't got stuck at security check.
However, please try it at your own risk. Security policy is getting more strict every day, and depends on countries.

Thursday: Nothing special
Friday: breakfast=400g dry noodle, lunch=curry&rice, dinner=400g dry noodle
Saturday: breakfast=takeout Sushi (16 pieces), lunch=spaghetti (usual classy restaurant size) and pizza (regular size), dinner=ramen (regular size)
Sunday=3 rice balls of convenience store and 1 bread, 2 bananas

Tried not to be overweighted, but I had a feeling I still have a bit of room to reduce further.
Anyway, I realize that I won't have to be a big eater from Thursday.

3 weeks before the race
Did my final long run of 36km on Sunday. Skipped Monday interval sesson, and did 16km tempo run on Wednesday on a track. Tried 15km tempo run on road on Saturday morning, but gave up at 10km as I felt so tired.

2 weeks before the race
Joined Monday interval session of 3x1200m + 3x800m, but I felt I "consume" my body in the last few rounds. Skipped Wednesday cruise interval, and tried 10-12km tempo on road next morning, but failed at 8km. Really worried about the long lasting fatigue. So skipped a parkrun on Saturday morning.

Race week
As a bootup, joined Monday session, but intentionally did only 3x1000m instead of 6 times.
Did 2km race-pace run on Thursday morning, and felt OK.
I protected myself from virus using a mask. A mask blocks droplets which may contain virus. I put masks whenever I heard someone coughing on bus, MRT, and in the office. Thanks to this, I was free from getting sick for the past 6 months.

Took a flight in midnight between Friday and Saturday.
Had 2-3 hour sleep.
Went to a race pack collection with my team mate (Mr V) and had lunch together.
Had ramen around 6pm and went to bed around 8pm.

Race day
Woke up naturally at 3am. Had a good sleep.
Mr V kindly picked me up at 5:30 to the race venue.
Arrived at the race venue just before 6am.
Plenty of toilets without time to wait, but no lights in the portable toilets.
Lined up in the first few rows of the B block. I could not enter the A block because my sub 3 in the past 2 years was not IAAF/AIMS certified.

Race plan
My target was sub 2:50, so, to start around 3:55/km and bank time.
Forecasts said rainy, temp around 19-21 deg. So not to worry about heat.
But a bit strong wind from east was forecasted. This was my concern.

Start-5km 19:44 (GPS watch form the start line 4:06/km - 3:50 - 3:51 - 3:52 - 4:00)
I passed the start line 10 secs after flag off. This was better than expected.
So not really a problem with B block as long as you lined early enough.
But runners around me seemed a bit slow. A bit annoyed, so I passed them, but tried not to consume me legs so much.
Pace was the fastest ever in my marathon, but didn't really feel difficulty.

5-10km 19:57 (3:57 - 4:04 - 3:57 - 3:56 - 3:57)
Took a few turns. Headwind from east pushed back me.
I tried high knee to resist the wind. This worked in my training run, and this race too.

10-15km 20:19 (4:07 - 4:02 - 4:01 - 4:04 - 4:01)
Felt 3:56ish was a bit too hard for me. So I shifted to an easier side.
And a big group was chasing me. Looks like they were running around 4 mins/km.
So I joined them. Should be better to run in a group under headwind.
Took the first gel around 13km.

15-20km 20:29 (4:02 - 3:59 - 4:07 - 4:01 - 4:00)
But pace of the group sometimes fluctuated. Such a case, I moved to the side and ran ahead of them. And they gradually cought up with me.
At that point, I realize keeping 4mins/km until the finish would not be feasible. So planning to slow down in the second half with the average less than 4:15/km. So it would be sub 2:55, and a new PB. Thought it would be great enough.

20-25km 20:27 (4:08 - 4:05 - 4:02 - 4:05 - 4:12)
First half was 1:25:03, not too bad. Thought about letting the group go ahead. But now, we ran along boring riverside with headwind. Getting out of the pacing group and running alone would be quite depressing for me. So I tried not to be off the group completely.
Took an energy gel again.

25-30km 22:13 (4:12 - 4:14 - 4:21 - 4:34 - 4:46)
And luckily(?), some runners also slowed down. At least I could run with them.
But soon, I felt something strange in my right leg, a premonition of cramp.
Just tried not to stimulate the leg so much.
Kept a very delicate balance, like running on a thin ice plate.
But soon at 29km, a upslope with two 180-deg turns came to my sight. That extinguished my momentum and destroyed the delicate balance.
Climbed up the slope with little care about the pace. Just kept short strides.

30-35km 24:36 (4:36 - 4:32 - 5:52 - 4:37 - 4:41)
Still had hope for sub 3, let's go for it. Would be ok to come back to sub 3 again at a IAAF/AIMS certified race.
Took an energy gel again.
But the right calf got cramped. Had to stop. There was so much salt on the socks. Although I took isotonic drink at almost tables, they were not enough(?) (The race leaflet mentioned salt candy at water station, but I really did not which was which.) The right ankle did not move at all for a while. But strangely enough, when I consciously ran with strong heel strike, the stiff calf seemed to be relaxed. I always thought mid-foot was more kind to legs. Anyway, carry on.

35-40km 25:25 (4:49 - 5:22 - 5:09 - 5:15 - 5:00)
And then, another upslope (without a downslope) coming up at the beginning of expressway.
It was again depressing. When I feel another cramp coming, I slowed down to wait for it to be gone.
Took an energy gel again around 38km for final fuel.

40km-finish 10:58 (4:39 - 5:10 - 1:55 (4:47/km))
Strangely enough, the feel of cramp was gone completely and I was able to speed up (still far off 4mins/km)

Looking back at the race...
Realised that with my ability in my shoes Adidas Takumi Ren, I can maintain 4 mins/km only up to 25km at most.
Conversly, I can at least maintain up to as far as 25km.

My stride impact is heavy in nature; when I run on a treadmil, very noisy every time my feet hit the rubber belt.
These years I only tried thin-sole shoes and only success was a conservatively paced London 2016, and cadense-focused Kasumigaura 2017.
When I look back, my first sub 3 in Berlin was on Nike's Luna Spider LT+, which was not a thin-sole type, but with a bit of cushioning. And that race has my most even split. In this sense, my legs might need decent cushioning. So it might be time to try booming thick-sole shoes. Lot of my teammates already tried them. But I was just waiting for price drop and accumulating review. I tried to mitigate the impact tuning up the running form, but really difficult for fast pace like 4mins/km. Call me a bloody lagard!!

Summary incl other remarks
- Could reduce carboloading even more. 
- Not a PB course because you need to climb up slope from riverside around 29km, and climb up after 30km to expressway, and up & down at tunnel after 35km. All kill your leg gradually. Plus headwind today (not as bad as expected though).
- Strangely enough, 3 hours after the race, no pain in the cramped right calf, but felt muscle pain in the left calf.
- Although I changed my running form to mitigate cramp, I got cramped, so I will have to reply on medicine.

According to Mr V, other marathons in Taipei does not have so many slopes. But I find those marathon also contain the riverside section and/or expressway, which are traumatic to me. But apart from marathons, Taipei itself is a very comfortable city to visit. Helpful people, rich nature including hot springs and mountain trails, and good food everywhere.
I want to coma back with my family next time.
Also realized West Australia is essentially within similar flight duration to Taiwan from Singapore. So I might try Perth for the next target race.

Challenge 32 2018 - race report

32km, 2:17:38@4:17.7/km, 11th overall
Weather was comparatively cool in Singapore. Actually the best long run here so far.

One week before: 30km long run with breaks@4:18/km
Wednesday on race week: cruise interval 20min+4min r+(5min+1min r)x2, ave 91.9 / std 1.9, + 4x200m@ave 36.3 / std 1.5, under annoyingly hot weather
Thursday on race week: 12km jog@4:57/km
Saturday morning on race week: 10km jog with 6-7km@3:57/km

Wear and gear
I suffered a bad cramp in the calves at the long run. So I kept massage on my calves.
You can do it any where, even in the office and on a bus.

I also realize my calves tend to get cramped in a long run when I wear my Mizuno Wave Emperor 3 and not my Adidas Takumi Ren Boost 3.
Looks like my cramps are related to a sole type.
While Wave Emperor is a complately separate sole while Takumi Ren is something between flat and separate types.

【シューズのご紹介⑦】adizero takumi ren boost 3(アディダス アディゼロ タクミ レン(練) ブースト 3)
【シューズのご紹介⑥】mizuno wave emperor 2(ミズノ ウェーブ エンペラー2)

Last year, I couldn't run fast enough in Takumi Ren, so I wore Wave Emperor. But this year, after I modified my running form, my speed improved even in Takumi Ren.

I wore my team singlet and a running belt with three GU energy gels in.
Planned every 12-13km and an extra just in case.

I took a 500ml water bottle filled with isotonic drink. The race did prepare isotonic drink at aid stations, but the route was 2-lap course, so I thought it would be crowded at the second lap, and I would struggle to hydrate myself. So I decided to take hydration from my water bottle in such a case. It was my last-minute decision just before I left home.

Small carbo-loading
Friday: dinner: small fried rice at 7-11 and fried chicken
Saturday: brunch: 4 packs of dry noodle, dinner: non-fried chicken curry
water loading: Saturday, isotonic drink

A race weekend
The race was in wee hours on Sunday. On Friday, I tried to go to bed early, but I didn't wake up early on Saturday morning. So, even though I tried to sleep in on Saturday evening, I couldn't. I had only 2-3 hour sleep at most.

Got up around 2:30am, 2 hours before the start.
The race venue is within 10min walk from my place, I left home around 3:30am.

Start-10km (21:10 + 21:10, 1km split: 4:15/km - 4:12 - 4:12 - 4:16 - 4:13 - 4:15 - 4:16 - 4:14 - 4:09 - 4:14)
Started off and tried not to go too fast. Ignored some runners of rocket start.
Around me, a couple of runners formed a group at 4:15/km. It was very rare in Singapore to have such a group around this pace. I like the atmosphere. Found that my shoelace was loosen around 6km, but seemed not so serious. Decided to tighten it up at a turnaround around 11km.

10-20km (21:36 + 21:49, 4:24 - 4:30 - 4:16 - 4:14 - 4:10 - 4:22 - 4:18 - 4:16 - 4:26 - 4:25
Tightened up the shoelace at the turnaround. Took some time to come back to my target pace. Took the first gel around 12-13km. Felt comfortable at the pace. As the weather was cool, felt that I had to keep the pace until the finish. Easily maintained the pace when I minded gluteus maximus.

20-25km (21:52, 4:21 - 4:22 - 4:21 - 4:19 - 4:26)
Still felt OK. A bit slowed down, but I hoped I could hang on. At an aid station around 24km, I drank isotonic from my water bottle because the station was crowded. So my preparation worked.

25-30km (22:32, 4:18 - 4:32 - 4:29 - 4:32 - 4:38)
But my pace slowed down drastically, I couldn't understand that. On top of that, I felt a premonition of cramp. So I had to slowed down further but I wanted to run as fast as possible and get to the finish line as early as possible before my legs got cramped.

30-finish (7:29, 4:41 - 2:48(4:38/km))
Finally finished. But my legs were not cramped (as far as I remembered). Probably I slowed down too much as I was scared by cramp.

GPS watch of mine (and my friends) indicated 31.6-7km (my average pace was 4:21/km). But Google map measurement along the path said 32.03km, my average pace was 4:17.7/km, thus not so off from my target 4:15/km.

But I really couldn't understand why my pace slowed down badly. Just jogged back home, took a shower, and removed gels from the belt -- two gels. Oh my gosh, that's the reason of my slow down! I put 3 gels, but 2 were left, meaning I only took one gel.

I only took the first gel at 12-13km, and forgot taking the second gel around 22-25km. So it was natural that I ran out of energy and slowed down.

twitterでPCから動画をアップロードする時の注意 / note on uploading a video to twitter on PC

When you encounter an error message when you upload a video from computer:
Users can’t post tweets with images or video - Error "Cannot read property 'code' of undefined”
Chances are your movie file is not mp4. Or even if it is mp4, the detailed format is not H264 with AAC audio
On the web, we support the MP4 video format with H264 format with AAC audio. You can upload videos up to 512MB, however you will be prompted to edit videos to 2 minutes and 20 seconds or less in length.

So you have to convert the videHo to H264 format with AAC audio.
Here you can use an online converter:

Bear File Converter – Online & Free



Bear File Converter – Online & Free
プロフィール / profile




- Marathon: 2:57
(London marathon, Apr 2016)
- Half marathon: 1:24
(Marina Run, Feb 2018)
-10K: 0:39
(Mo running London Greenwich, Nov 2013)
-100K: 8:28
(サロマ湖ウルトラマラソン, Jun 2018)

-Coming up
CSC Run by the Bay Half Marathon, Oct 2018
臺北馬拉松, Dec 2018

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