VJM Jungle Marathon
As the first light of dawn began to permeate the horizon, I embarked on an unforgettable journey - a 70km run that would test both my physical and mental boundaries. The race commenced at the early hour of 4am, with the darkness enveloping us as the adventure unfolded.
The route, though grueling, was replete with incredible vistas. Boasting an altitude of 3000m, the trail featured panoramic views of majestic valleys, towering mountains, serene rice fields, and quaint villages. The scenery, in its raw beauty, provided moments of solace and motivation amidst the intense challenge.
A particularly daunting aspect of the run was the climbing sections over massive rocks, requiring not just stamina, but a keen sense of balance and determination. It wasn’t just about physical endurance; it was a test of willpower and grit. Equally challenging, if not more, were the very steep downhill sections. Every step required calculated precision, ensuring safety while maintaining a steady pace.
As I made my way through the course, the rural charm was palpable. On the way, I encountered numerous local inhabitants: chicken roosters announcing the morning, and playful dogs curiously observing the stream of runners passing through their territory.
A heartwarming moment that stands out during the run was when a fellow racer, seeing my exhaustion and not able to change a banknote of 500k VND, so definitly in need, generously offered to pay for my water. It’s these small gestures that embody the spirit of camaraderie and mutual support, which are so intrinsic to long-distance running communities.
After a challenging 12 hours and 15 minutes, I crossed the finish line. The fatigue was undeniable but my partner was waiting for me at the finish line and the sense of accomplishment and the memories garnered along the way made every moment worth it.
This 70km run was one of the most beautiful ones that I had the fortune to complete.