March 14, 2016

Green Corridor 2016 Run - Mud, Rocks and a Bad Sorethroat

6th March 2016

Ahh... The legendary Green Corridor Run. The run that destroys running shoes, turning it from pristine white into muddy brown. For some reason, it rained almost every year during the the run and Big Boned Guy who participated during one of the wettest Green Corridor Run in history, had to discard his SAF shoes. This year, he volunteered all of us to participate in this run, so that we had a chance to enjoy the muddy mess and an excuse to throw out our old running shoes.

The fact is that we are all looking forward to turning Lazy Girl's pristine white and blue Adidas shoes to muddy brown.. and she only has one pair of running shoe. We thought it is time for her to invest in another shoe.

On the morning of the run, I woke up with a roaring sore throat but figured that it should be a small issue. Little did I know that the flu bug has already caught up with me and the Green Corridor Run, with it's starting time of 8am, will prove to be my undoing as the extreme heat and humidity is unlike the previous years wet and muddy runs. Halfway through the run, the heat and sorethroat finally got to me and I limped to a walk, feeling a bit faint. I am probably running a fever by than and I was tempted to drop out at the 5km check point (Which I should have done) and decided to soldier on in spite of my better judgement. I combat the heat by grabbing copious amount of free water along the route and slowly walked to the end point.

I got home in one piece and measured my temperature immediately, sensing that something is wrong - A high 38 degrees.

And I am knocked out by high fever for the rest of the week.

Morale of the story, no strenuous exercise if there is any hint of flu, which includes sneezing and sorethroat.
SG Unfit Runners before the run
One of the signs denoting the fact that you are no longer in Malaysia

Anyway, I managed to distract myself while walking to the end point with quite a number of photos and overall, I rate this run highly, not because of beautiful scenery or a fantastic goodie bag, but on the refreshing kind of scenery and track that you can seldom find in Singapore.

Singapore, a well known concrete jungle, have few dirt track running opportunities as most of the country has been replaced by concrete pavement and marbled tiles. Any runs that involves a dirt track (often found near reservoirs) are often uneven with lots of treacherous tree roots and protruding rocks which poses a hazard to any unwary runners. There are only a few soft dirt tracks running routes around Singapore which are smooth and flat and one of them is my favorite haunt at Bedok Reservoir.

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The Green Corridor proves to be another of those dirt track runs which is relatively smooth, thanks to its historical legacy as a railway track that links Malaysia and Singapore. However, one of the biggest draw back of the run is that there is only a few direct entry and exit points along the way and many other entry points requires the runners to bash through fences and thorny overgrowth. Besides that, the track is not that friendly when there is a heavy rain the night before as parts of the track, especially those that dark underground paths that run through bridges will be extremely muddy and undesirable for those who treasures the pristine whiteness of they shoes. People who are used to gym running should avoid that path too as mosquitoes will sense your gym trained sweet blood and come for you in masses.

The organization of the Green Corridor run is also excellent given that they have to operate in a very narrow, muddy and constrained area whereby it is quite difficult to get any fallen runner to a nearby road for evacuation due to its sometimes remote location from roads. The long one way stretch which cuts across to the west side of the island also means that baggage deposits and management is an additional burden as organizers will have to move the luggage to the finish point in huge lorries. Kudos to the organizers for such a well executed run.

Despite my personal mishap during the run, I pretty enjoy it and thanks to the scorching weather for the past few days, my ready-to-be-discarded SAF shoe did not get junked by me as most of the track is pretty dry.

Sad to say, we were informed by the organizers as this may be the last ever Green Corridor Run as the government is going to redevelop the stretch of land for recreational use. Perhaps we will see the Green Corridor Run resurrected a few years down the road as a historical run with a dry concrete pavement to run on, rather than the muddy mess which we come to love and hate.      


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