ToughASIA regularly features running and triathlon clubs with the intent to share the latest happenings with our sports communities.
Typically, these clubs are founded by the who’s who in the industry – coaches, performance athletes, brands – or, they have been around for a long time that you see their members donning club colours in sports races in Malaysia. However, once in a while, we do come across newbie clubs that catch our eyes immediately. Kelana Jaya Run Club, or KJRC, is one such club.
KJRC was founded by Syed Shahzli Bin Syed Muhamad late last year, with its first run on 4 December 2019. He has been running for only a year now as a motivation to lose weight. He had initially joined running group Brand New Waves, with thrice weekly sessions that would change from TTDI to Desa Park City and KLCC. Born and bred in Kelana Jaya, the 42 year-old hospitality industry employee-turned-businessman was looking for a group to run at a regular venue.
ToughASIA: Please share with us some background of KJRC.
Syed Shahzli: It started when I came up with the idea to gather runners to run with. As I have just started running for a year now, I would mostly run alone and it is difficult to keep myself motivated. So, I posted on Facebook group Orang Kelana Jaya last November, asking if there are runners in that area who would like to run in a group.
Response was tremendous! I then created a Whatsapp group and we had our first group run on 4th December with 10 runners. After we posted photos on Facebook and Instagram, the group has now grown to 92 runners! Our biggest turnout was 42 members on a Wednesday night run.
ToughASIA: When are your club runs? And what are your training programs like?
Syed Shahzli: Our group runs are held every Wednesday and starts at 9:00pm. Our meet up point will be at Sekolah Rendah Kelana Jaya 1. We have multiple routes of 5km and we would rotate the routes so that members would not feel bored. Everyone is welcome to join our run!
We have been lucky to get Nike Malaysia’s head coach Din to conduct a running clinic for KJRC. The first session in January had run drills. Being neighbourhood runners, it was an eye opening experience for us to understand what proper coaching can do for us. We will conduct another session soon, subject to coach Din’s availability.
ToughASIA: What fun things do your club organise?
Syed Shahzli: As we are currently new, I had started a group event to be more involved. In January, I created a 50km KJRC challenge, where top three male and female were rewarded with a prize. For February, I have created a 75km KJRC challenge. The challenges are created at the beginning of every month.
ToughASIA: What aspirations do you have for KJRC?
Syed Shahzli: In the long term, I have this idea of creating the Kelana Jaya Half Marathon. This requires a lot of proper planning to execute. But yeah, this is definitely my goal and passion. We also already have members who volunteer at run events. I will tap on their expertise and get KJRC to volunteer as a group at future events.
For someone who started running only a year ago, Syed Shahzli’s proudest moment is to be the first runner at KJRC to complete a 100km run challenge in 6 days! With the support and motivation from his club members, he will attempt the Kuala Lumpur Standard Chartered Half Marathon and Petaling Jaya Half Marathon in this year.
You may find more information on Kelana Jaya Run Club on their Instagram account.