The Academics of Running

A burning passion has led two educators to the Gold Coast Marathon.


Joel Tay and Joji Mendoza are well-respected educators in their field, both who are teaching at Cedar Girls Secondary School. Joel, with a wealth of experience being in the academic industry for well over three decades and Joji, who has a Masters in Linguistics from the United Kingdom are poised to set on their next campaign - The Gold Coast Marathon.

Joel has been a part of track and field coaching since 1989, after running his first marathon in 1984. "I have been running since 1972 when I was in Secondary One. I often take part in smaller races like the 10km and half marathons, and I average about 10-12 of such events annually, although I gave it up in 2014. The Gold Coast Marathon has been my dream event for a long time coming and I decided to make a 'come back' to train for it. I found eight mates who were keen on joining me on this journey and here we are."

Joji despite started running only eight years ago has a huge heart for this sport. "I ran my first 5K in 2010 when I was in university, and since then it’s been a wonderful pastime for me. I didn’t grow up enjoying running - my CCAs have always been performing arts-related - so it took some time for me to get comfortable with long distance events like 10Ks."


Training for a marathon is no walk in the park, as both Joel and Joji made conscious efforts training leading up to the event. "It's tough but I want to complete the marathon at a sub-4 timing for a personal best. I try to train as much as possible but I have to listen to my body as age is catching up to me." said the 58-year-old Joel.

"I started swimming once a week for cross-training and doing more strength exercises at the gym. I didn’t use to focus on building strength, but after talking to a very experienced cross-country coach in Beijing last year, I realised the importance of matching mileage to strength training for improved results, so now I’m trying that out." Joji added to her training regime.


Citing the Gold Coast Marathon as one of his checkboxes on his bucket list, Joel explained the coming out of retirement. "The 'sudden' decision was made many years back with friends who are keen to go Gold Coast to have the same experience as me. The fast, flat and scenic course with cool climate is the ideal choice for my come-back. Mohan Kandiah, a veteran runner at Gold Coast is my greatest inspiration. He has completed at least 10 marathons at Gold Coast and more than 200 over marathons."

"I’ve heard fantastic things about the Gold Coast Marathon! I heard that the crowd is a dynamic and cheerful bunch who’ll cheer for you even though they don’t know who you are! I’m thrilled to be witnessing such a lively marathon spirit, especially on their 40th edition of the event." Joji gushed, on her eagerness to the event.

About Gold Coast Marathon 2018

This edition of the Gold Coast marathon features eight different races including the ASICS half marathon, the Wheelchair Marathon and the Garmin 4km to name a few. As a surprise announcement, the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games is mirroring the route of the Gold Coast Marathon, giving marathoners an invaluable opportunity to see how they rank against the best in the world.

Gold Coast Marathon 2018 is now open for registration.  Log on to register here.

To learn more about Gold Coast Marathon travel packages, click here to read more.

Gold Coast Marathon x ASICS clinic


Not sure if you are ready to participate an overseas race? Come join us for special clinic organised jointly by Tourism and Event Queensland and ASICS Singapore. Pick up pointers from veteran runners who have run the Gold Coast Marathon nine times over. Formulate habits on how to prepare adequately for an overseas race and insights on what GCM 2018 has to offer.

The free workshop will be held over two mornings on 7th and 8th April 2018 from 9 am to 11 am. All participants will enjoy a special in-store 20% discount from ASICS during the workshop. With only 50 limited spots available, the first-come first-serve rule applies.

Click here to register.


RUN Singapore aims to be a complete resource for Singaporean runners and marathoners of all ages and abilities. With its continuing efforts, the website seeks to uncover the latest news, information and expert advice to motivate runners to run efficiently, train intelligently and lead a balance life. If you have enjoyed a good read with RUN Singapore magazine, be enticed further as we unleash more running content to feed your running needs.



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