Name: Wong Yao Han Melvin
Date of Birth: 27 August 1983 (32yrs)
Personal Best(s): 15:53min (Men 5,000m) & 33:40.28 (Men 10000m, M’sia Open)
1. Silver Medal – Malaysia Open 2015 (5K)
2. Bronze Medal – Malaysia Open 2015 (10K)
Q) What are your hopes, dream and target this SEA Games?
My goal for this SEA Games has 2 parts to it:
1) To lower my personal best for both 5 and 10k
2) To inspire a new generation of distance runners into extending their longevity in the sport upon entering the workforce and starting a family.
Q) How’s your preparation for the SEA Games?
My preparation has been going on well. The structure of the training has been in place so its just about putting in the hard work.
Q) What are some of the biggest challenges in your sports career so far leading to SEA Games and your athletics career?
The constant need to balance work performance, family commitments and training requirements. Everyday has its own challenges and to go through each day while maintaining an appropriate balance until the NSA has validated my performance has been the most challenging for the last 4 months.
Q) How did you specialise in your particular event? Why this event, what’s the attraction?
I started off as a cross country runner so I am drawn to the 5000m event on the track. I also did some road races that range from the 10k to the half marathons so naturally, 10k is something I would also try to compete.
Q) Who is your coach, tell us more about him/her. Also a mention of your previous coaches.
I am currently coached by Elangovan. He is a former National Runner who could race well in an assortment of events ranging from the 800m right up to the marathon. And it is because of his rich experience in track racing, coupled with his credentials and personality, which makes him such a great coach and mentor to me and a select group of athletes. Elangovan’s in-depth knowledge of the sport gives me assurance that I will continue to extend my longevity and progress in the sport.
Q) Do you take care of your nutrition and diet? Your opinion on supplements and food.
I do not pay too much detail on my food though I have already had a filter on what food I would avoid in my daily life. Fast Food and Oily food are something I would avoid. I would also avoid carbonated drinks.
Q) Aside from athletics, what else interest you? You could say the other part of your life beyond athletics.
I have played in a concert band for 10 years during my younger days so music is definitely part of my life. I enjoy watching a musical and attending concerts though they have been rare in the recent years.
Q) How do you fit in your training/competing with your family and studies/work?
I have a mental schedule of my daily tasks so that I can roughly allocate time for each task – be it work, training and family. I am a firm advocate of planning ahead – if not, you will get consumed by the day’s activities and not able to achieve your goals – short and long term.
Q) Share with the readers, some aspects of your training regime.
My structure changes with each training cycle and objective. In general, there are staple sessions included in each cycle, which are:
Easy Runs, Long Runs, Short Intervals and Hill Workouts. It is important to schedule easy runs in between your effort sessions so that your muscles can get to regenerate during this short time.
Q) What are your long term athletics goals?
To continue lowering the 5 and 10K personal best times and moving up the distance to the marathon.
Q) What advice do you have for young aspiring athletes?
Commitment – Runners are routine creatures and once you have a structure and routine; commit to sticking to that structure. Your commitment will surely yield results faster than you expect.
Patience – While many are looking at short-cuts to running fast and building the body to run fast, a lot of us overlooked the fact that the body needs time to absorb the training and adapt to the stimulus. As such, be patient with running slow and steady in the beginning for I am sure it will prepare you to run faster and further at the end of the training cycle. I am a big advocate of this value.