An afternoon with Nancy

Met my running idol and exchanged some amusing tales.

 Back in June, I had a unique opportunity to meet one of my running idols from Indonesia, Nancy. Having interviewed her before for my blog segment, Inspiring Women Who Run, I was very excited to finally see her in the flesh.

Carboloading session with IndoRunners (June 2013)
Fairy & Nancy carboloading session in KL (June 2013)

Nancy flew in from Jakarta for the KL Marathon, which ultimately got postponed to September due to the haze situation. Nonetheless our carboloading session went on as usual as Zainudin and I played host to our overseas friends for a merry Indo-Malay makan-makan session.

Meeting Nancy was awesome – this Sumatran lady’s personality is so candid and matter-of-factly that you cannot help but just like her. She shared some amazing stories about her training regime, which included staples like  doing at least a hundred sit-ups after every run to strengthen the core muscles, and running at least 100 kilometers at least per week!

I asked her how the latter was done, and she says she runs twice a day on the weekdays (about 10km before she goes to to work), and then another 12km in the evening when she would pass her belongings to her driver and then run the rest of the way home while he drove her things back! This is not inclusive of the 20+km that she clocks in during the weekend. This woman has never seen the light of “resting days” and runs literally every day of the week. “If I don’t run 100km a week, I feel so guilty!” she quips. Uh-huh.

Another story from Nancy’s colorful running life that truly captivated me was how she trained her supir (driver) and pembantu rumah (maid) to actually run as fast as her!

I know right. Only in Indonesia.

Truly this made for one cackle-filled dinner table conversation, but honest to God that is what she did. Initially Nancy made her two personal helpers run with her to be her bodyguards as she traversed long distances within the city of Jakarta. Her driver would be panting, begging for her to slow down, to which she’d retorted, “if I have to slow down to your pace, saya rugi! (I will lose out!) You have to keep to my pace!”

Needless to say the driver managed to beef up his fitness to keep up with Nancy’s pace and endurance, so much so that Nancy signs him up for races and he actually wins prize money for being so fast! “Ya lumayanlah (not bad), pocket money for them,” she tells me with a twinkle in her eye. I can tell she is very proud to have groomed them. “They get a share when I win a prize too,” she says. My, oh my – how is that for extra motivation?

My friends and I joked that applying for a job as a personal driver will be tough with Nancy – they’d have to undergo a running test too! 😀

Wishing Nancy and all my awesome runner friends all the best in the Standard Chartered Kuala Lumpur Marathon tomorrow!

Carboloading session with IndoRunners in KL (June 2013)
We got photobombed by the waiter!
William, Fairy, Nancy, Ruby and Zainudin
Clockwise: William, Fairy, Nancy, Zainudin and Ruby



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Hi! I am Fairy from Petaling Jaya, Malaysia - currently residing in Sydney, Australia. This blog contains write-ups on my fitness adventures, whether it's running, swimming, hiking, Zumba, whatever! If I sweat, I write! As a young adult in my twenties, I led a relatively sedentary lifestyle before I had an awakening in 2011. I was overweight by age 30 and finally decided to turn my life around, so I started to reclaim my health back by losing 20 percent of my then body weight by playing dance and fitness video games! I've not looked back since and now happily lead an active lifestyle. If you want to get in touch with me, please email me at fairy[at] or DM me on Instagram @myindo. Thanks for stopping by!

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