KUALA LUMPUR — September 20, 2019: The haze does not seem to show any sign of going away and it’s distressing Malaysians. Fitness buffs surely count among them.
Undoubtedly, many who enjoy the outdoors are in despair, to say the least. It appears like gloom and doom for them.
The Mole spoke to a few outdoors folk who lamented the hazy gloom that is depriving them of their daily routines.
Most either skip their routine, do workouts at home or at the fitness centres.
Puteri Nivin Zolkiffli, a 38-year-old marathoner who has been actively running since 2014, said that the haze is causing her to feel sluggish and “fat.”
Before the hazy weather, Nivin routinely went running every day – training herself for the Chicago Marathon next month.
Now she goes to the fitness centre to work out and run on the treadmill.
Running on the treadmill, she laments, does not give her the same level of satisfaction that she gets from running outdoors.
“Running 10km on the treadmill is not fun because to me it restricts my capabilities. Plus, you don’t get fresh air. It’s in a confined space and you don’t get to feel of actual road elevations,” she added.
Nivin noted that there are a lot of major running events coming up.
“Many runners like myself are frustrated because the haze is preventing us from having to train outside.”
“Most of us are hoping that the biggest running event in KL, which is the KL Standard Chartered (KLSC) Marathon will not be cancelled or postponed,” she said.
So far, there has been no announcement on the KLSC marathon scheduled for next Sunday (Sept 29). The kids dash and fn run are on Saturday.
KLSC2019 organisers, in a response to The Mole, said that they are monitoring the haze situation closely but will not be making a decision until closer to Race Weekend.
“At the moment, we are proceeding with the event as planned and will only make an announcement upon consultation with the Department of Environment and all relevant stakeholders,” they said.
The haze also led to postponement of another highly anticipated event – the BHPetrol Orange Run 2019, which was supposed to take place on Sept 15.
Fitness enthusiast and regular runner Ain Sameed said it has been disheartening the past week as she had to do indoor workout and skip her running outdoors.
“I usually do indoor workout twice a week. I run almost every day. I enjoy running either in the park or around our hilly neighbourhood. I am praying for clear skies,” she said.
Another disheartened individual is Raja Amilia Raja Azman, who enjoys gardening and regularly goes out for her morning walks.
“It is rather depressing not being able to be out and about. Every morning I look out the window to check if the haze is still there.”
“And then I feel sad that there goes another day of not hearing the birds chirping, of not doing my gardening, not able to plan for breakfast in one of the open gerai and seeing another dark and depressing day,” she lamented.