This year’s Putrajaya Aquathlon was quite a new experience for me. It’s my first year racing in an adult category (16-20 years old), and I was nervous about the 500m pool swim, since I was used to long swims in the open water lake instead.
Still, the day began very beautifully, with a nice breezy weather to accompany the sunrise reflected in the lake. All the participants had gathered around the transition area and chatter filled the air. I met up with my M3X teammates as we played around and laughed together before the race began.
This is personally one of my favourite parts of racing— getting to catch up with my teammates, and making new friends.
In fact, while in the waiting test behind the pool, I began talking to an older girl in my category, and we found out that we had so much in common, and mutual friends as well.
Somehow, it felt more comforting to know that the people I was about to race with were so friendly and encouraging.
Competing in a race need not always be about winning or beating your rivals. With our common interest, there are more friendships to be forged that will certainly stand the test of times.
My wave began with a water-start swim in the 50m pool. Surprisingly, the 10 laps went by really quickly as the competitiveness levels picked up.
It was a quick run out of the pool area to the large transaction area, where I threw on my shoes and buckled on my race belt. This was immediately followed by the 5km run. The route was thankfully a simple U-turn route along the lake, with marshals to support and guide runners throughout.
The partially sunny sky made for the perfect running weather, and despite the stomach stitch I had, managed to come in second placing.
Overall, the event seemed well planned, and I genuinely enjoyed my race. It was unfortunate that despite the organizer’s efforts to speed up the flow of the swimming waves, many of the adults had to wait longer than expected to begin their races.
The heat was definitely more prominent after 11am while the adult categories were running. However, there was thankfully many water stations across the route to keep participants hydrated.
More about the budding triathlete
Angie Liew, 15 is a petite girl who just loves the feeling of wind blowing through her hair. Introduced to sports and triathlon by her father, she enjoys playing football and rugby too. Angie started with Kids of Steel Triathlon and transitioned to train under Team M3X of TRI-AMAteur Triathlon Club, and is currently a Grade 11 student of Sunway International School, Malaysia.