It was a warm day, turning cooler into the evening – just the right atmosphere for the first night training for the NightHawks. The second weekend session of Operation NightHawk saw a good turnout at MR Amenities Centre, all looking forward to challenge themselves to the Reservoirs route they have heard so much about.
After briefings of the run requirements, route and safety tips for night running, the trainees were dispatched in groups along with their respective trainers and pacers. The NightHawk Training Crew were doing a great job of guiding the runners, especially at critical junctions and important turning points. The light sticks and flash lights don by the participants made it a sight to behold as the various groups ran in tight-knit bunches along the enchanting stretches of UPR and OUTR.
Although the groups started out still a tad fast for this BaseBuild phase, it was much improved over the first training last week. As the conversations and sight-seeing (in the night?) began, the NightHawks were able to settle into more comfortable paces, contributing to many a strong finish on the return.
It was an interesting experience for many of the runners new to the route, made more exciting with the night running in groups flanked on both sides by dark, forested areas. As the NightHawks warmed up, they started to listen to their bodies and a number experienced the benefits of having a stronger, sustainable run by starting up more conservatively…all made possible with the motivation and good-feelings of running in their respective pace groupings.
Starry, Starry Night – that was the song ‘playing out in our heads’ when we ran along the windy stretch of Seletar Reservoir Park, flanked on the left by the majestic body of water with the silvery reflection of the moon, and to the right the pitch-dark beauty of the forest. From above, we could see flashing lights bobbing in as a group, and knowing them to be Group 3, shouted and waved at them in delight. Once back onto the OUTR stretch, it was a quiet 3km stretch of delightful silence, where the sounds of uniformed strides provided the rhythm for a sustained pace home.
Moans of relief and satisfaction were heard from some when we reached the small, dark road flanking the Little Sisters Of The Poor, indication that the end was very near. With iced-cold Gatorade and bananas as the ‘carrot’ of the already drained and hungry bunch, we were striding powerfully and running ‘tall’, pushing forward like marathoners approaching the finish line. The completion was sweet, and with timings reported, it was a time for debriefs and sharing of our night run experience. With more night training runs to come, things can only get better as we progress towards Week #3 of Ops NightHawk.
The NightHawks Have Survived The Enchanting Reservoirs Run. YeeYa!