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Endurance and exhilaration

A penchant for going the distance and for adventure has kept Chan Fook Leong running and climbing over the years.

Chan Fook Leong
Published Sat, Sep 3, 2022 · 05:50 AM

TRIATHLON or climbing? It could not be both. Given the time and financial constraints, any economics student would know one should pick the preferred choice and ditch the alternative. As I sat on the ledge of the first floor of the university sports complex where I had a vantage point of the rock wall, I mulled over the options.

I chose to swim, bike and run, and began hitting the roads on long-run days to build stamina. Marathon races further consolidated the endurance base. Multiple cross-country races, middle-distance events and painful interval sessions helped with speed. I applied the same training approach to distance cycling which was my weakest of the three triathlon disciplines.

When it came to race day, I tended to emerge from the open waters in the middle of a competitive pack -- always a decent performance as I came from a competitive swimming background. But despite pumping the wheels up to 140psi, I would fall behind in most of the cycling stages. Naturally, I was always glad to transition to strong run finishes.

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