Friday, October 24, 2014

Runner Profile: Yan Leng

I first met Yan Leng during the Gold Coast Airport Marathon (GCAM) running clinic sessions early 2013. We have never raced together at an event before, save for the rather disastrous Salomon Jamboree Trail Run in July 2013. Since then, she has been running and running, improving in leaps and bounds, and recently completed her first ultra event, the inaugural Starlight Ultra 84km held in Penang, Malaysia on 23rd - 24th August 2014. She has graciously agreed to spare me a few minutes (after I virtually twisted her arm) for this interview.

At the recent BHPetrol Orange Run.
Photo credit:

1) How long have you been running?
I started running about 2 years ago, since September 2012. My first official race/run was Nike KL Run 10KM. I joined it with my few colleagues and since then I fell in love with running.

2) What does your family think about you and running?
My family never expected that I will love running so much. However, they always support me. I also ensure that my running plans do not interfere with my family time. Normally, I will run in the early mornings during the weekends so that I still have time with my family after that.

Jamie, Piew, Yan Leng, Nick, Gan and Yee Hoo before Starlight Ultra.
Photo credit: Jamie.

3) Congratulations on completing the Starlight Ultra 84KM. You won 2nd runner up for the Women's Veteran category. How did you feel?
Thank you, Yvonne. I never expect that I would win it. I felt very happy and thankful to my running buddies (GC team) who always motivate me and share their valuable knowledge with me. I will not have achieved this (task) without their support.

4) How did you train for the race? I heard that you guys did a lot of hill training!
I did my LSD every weekend, group exercises and short runs during weekdays whenever possible. Ya, I have done more hill training at FRIM and Genting Sempah for this race.

(Yvonne: For those who don't know, Genting Sempah is a transit town or mountain pass between the states of Pahang and Selangor, and if you're coming from Selangor, you'd go past it in order to get to Genting Highlands. Genting Highlands has a theme park is probably the nearest (and only) casino in Malaysia.)

After a group run at Ammah Hill.
Photo credit: Jamie.

5) Just recently you won Women's Open 2nd runner up at the Reebok Challenge. Wow! Were you expecting it?
Honestly I did not expect that I would win in this race. I joined this race last year and found it fun, so I joined it again this year. I only aimed to complete it with no injury as I know I am weak in the upper body strength. So, I never expected that I can complete it and win the 2nd runner up position.

6) You have such a nice figure. Is it because you eat healthily? *note my tone of jealousy :D*
Thanks for your compliment. I love food and eating, but luckily enough that I love exercises too. Hence, it balance out. LOL! I try to keep my diet healthy and clean most of the time but sometimes I will eat junk and fattening food too - I just can’t control my urge for delicious and nice food!

I love a lot of junk food ... potato chips, nachos, popcorn, ice cream, cakes ... I love Western, Korean, Japanese food ... basically I love eating! I can't resist the nice food ... that's why I need a lot of exercise to burn off the calories. 

(Yvonne: She's my kind of girl!! :D )

The crazy GCAM group I used to run with early last year.
Photo credit: Jamie. Taken after TITI50.

7) I have been hoping for you to be a trail runner! Please tell me you have plans for some trail races in the near future and what will they be?
I love trail running as compared to road running. My upcoming race is Bromo Tengger Semeru 100 Ultra which will be held on 7 November 2014. I am also targeting Vietnam Mountain Marathon and TITI Ultra Road race as next year's races as of date. I do not really plan which races to participate, I will train on the registered run and survey for other races after I have completed it.

8) Which do you prefer, shorter distance or ultra distance? Road running or trail running? :D
Pushing and sprinting till huffing and puffing during short distance races is not enjoyable for me and I also found road running is boring as compared to trail running. I do prefer long distance and trail runs where I can enjoy more of the scenery and it is more challenging.

(Yvonne: Bwahaha!)

I look forward to hearing about your races next year and can't wait to hear about you running faster than some of our friends! *cough no names mentioned cough cough*


For more information on the races mentioned in this post:

1 comment:

  1. Yeah, she's come a long way since I first knew her too. These days I can hardly keep up with her :-) Keep it up Yan Leng and nice interview Yvonne.