Get yourself running on a beautiful, mythical island called Langkawi, an archipelago of 99 islands. Langkawi local Shahrizan Saad highly recommends that you pack your running shoes, now that restrictions have been lifted.
The islander, Shah might have only taken up running 6 years ago. However, he would be the best host to lead you on runs around the picturesque paddy fields of Bendang backed by mountains standing majestically against the azure blue skies.
Along the way, he shed some weight and met some like-minded runners to set up the Langkawi Runners group. Feeding off their motivation, the group captain ran his personal best (PB) marathon time of 3:29:46 hrs at the Chiangmai Marathon in 2019.
Now, the Langkawi Runners group and welcomes everyone who visits the beautiful island to join them on their runs.
ToughASIA: When and why was Langkawi Runners founded?
Shah: Langkawi Runners was founded in 2017 by five passionate and highly motivated runners. Now, we have 17 active members. Two are IRONMAN triathlon finishers, with one of them awarded as the second-best local triathlete.
As the group captain, I have completed 14 marathons with my PB 3:29:46 hrs done at Chiang Mai Marathon, and a few sub-4 hr timings at overseas marathons in Gold Coast, Bangkok and Indonesia.
ToughASIA: How often does the group run? Any requirements to join?
Shah: We run every morning from 7am and anyone can join our sessions. We have many runners from outside Langkawi who came for holidays and texted us to bring them run and explore Bendang and Ulu Melaka.
For local runners in Langkawi, only runners who are consistently running with us will be introduced to our official Whatapps chat group and be entitled for the group’s Adidas running shirts. Members who are inactive for more than 2 months will be removed from group.
ToughASIA: Do you have any specific training sessions?
Shah: Yes, we have a running program to improve running technique and speed. That would be our weekly track sessions every Tuesday 5:30pm at Langkawi Stadium.
ToughASIA: To date, what is Langkawi Runners’ proudest achievement as a running club?
Shah: We became the only running group in Malaysia to have approval by the local police to organise a running event during CMCO. On 12.12.2020, we named it as LangkawiRunners 12.12.
It was held in conjunction with the Kuala Lumpur marathon – KLSCM 2020 virtual event and acknowledged by Race Director of KLSCM. We also had proper road markings, water stations, traffic, safety and start and finish arches.
ToughASIA: Do you organise any other events recently?
Shah: Yes, between 18 January to 28 Feb 2021, we did an internal Weekly Mileage Challenge. The purpose was to motivate our members to run and achieve their highest mileage within a week. Every week, we picked 2 winners to win our Langkawi Runners shirts.