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The Runner’s Alphabet (Special Edition) – ‘I’ for IRONMAN

IRONMAN Malaysia took place at Langkawi Island last week, and I was watching the proceedings with great interest and admiration through social media. My Facebook newsfeed was in a festive mood, filled with live coverage by various magazines, updates by friends volunteering at transition, and timely updates from race photographers capturing the action all the way till the 17-hour cut-off time.

Highlights included the indomitable 77-year old Malaysian triathlete, Uncle Yee Sze Mun, (the link is to an interview with him on local radio station LiteFM), who completed what was his 19th IRONMAN. I was also very happy for my triathlete neighbour, Lini, who emerged Best Malaysian Female and 4th in her division, at her first IRONMAN outing. The following morning, triathletes on my Instagram feed posted their finisher medals, a first for many of them. One could almost feel the exhilaration in every photo and every word!

Ask a layperson if they would contemplate doing a 3.86 km swim, 180.25 km bicycle ride and a marathon (42.2 km) run, consecutively and without a break, and you’d probably get blank stares of disbelief. Triathlon will probably remain a spectator sport for me, though I must say triathlon events will witness some of the best shows of camaraderie in a sport (at least IMHO for the Port Dickson Triathlon and Powerman Duathlon, events at which I participated as a relay runner).

So this layperson here decided to salute these awesome men and women by having a Special Edition of my ‘Runner’s Alphabet‘ series of drawings. Yes, ‘Special Edition’ is artistic license for me to skip some letters of the alphabet and go straight to the letter ‘I’, heh heh – and no prizes for guessing what ‘I’ stands for.

I spent the most time drawing the bicycle, though I liked the helmet most, for some reason. (I’ve resisted the temptation to draw a certain electrical appliance, but I couldn’t help the movie reference, cos, hey, it’s totally apt!)

(Obviously there is a retro streak in me!)

(Obviously there is a retro streak in me!)


About speedshuffle (75 Articles)
Wen Li is a runner, blogger, mother, educator and artist. She is the Co-Founder and Cartoonist of Malaysia's first comic strip on running, Running Toons ( and is a Compressport Ambassador. Her running story was featured in Marie Claire Malaysia's April 2016 issue alongside several other notable women running bloggers. She runs wherever the road takes her, come scorching sunshine, stifling humidity or relentless rain (and preferably to a Nasi Lemak breakfast!). Apart from pounding the asphalt, she also enjoys hiking and pilates, and is now attempting CrossFit!

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