Road to Berlin 2022: Cheryl Tay's Journey to the Berlin Marathon

Cheryl Tay will be competing in the 2022 Berlin Marathon, join her as she champions sustainability and raises funds for National Cancer Centre

PHOTO: @CHERYLTAYSG


The other day, I was digging up footage of my Ironman triathlon races from pre-pandemic days and it gave me so much feels. I remember the overwhelming triumph when crossing the finish line, the amazement at how wonderful our bodies can be for taking us through such endurance races, and also, the pain from pushing our body to the limits – and beyond.


I definitely remember the joys more than the suffering, but hey, if everything was easy, then everyone would be doing it right? Call me a sucker for punishment, but I find myself looking for the next race even though I question myself when I'm out there racing in the blistering heat.

My last race was in February 2020 – the Ironman 70.3 Bangsaen – and honestly, I haven't been in a hurry to get back out there. There have been races held locally and travel has opened up for overseas races, yet somehow I find myself waiting for the "right race" - if I might call it that.


Well, 2022 is the year I decided I'm gonna do better. Literally, physically, emotionally. Starting with myself, I will be training for the BMW Berlin Marathon in September. If you are not aware, this is a World Marathon Major (WMM) and slots are via ballot. That’s how exciting it is!


The Berlin Marathon has been held annually since 1974 (except for 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic) on the streets of Berlin, where you get to run through the beautiful city steeped rich in history. The race starts and ends near the Brandenburg Gate, and the course is pretty much flat.

PHOTO: @CHERYLTAYSG


Most major run race


It will be my most major run race ever and my first WMM! Prior to this, I've only ever done one marathon (standalone and not within a full Ironman) in 2019, so I will be venturing into new territory.


For the past two years, I’ve just been maintaining my fitness and continuing to be active, so that I don’t have too big a gap to close when I decide to race again. I’ve just started structured training again and boy, I am struggling to manage the fatigue levels.


I’m sure this is a challenge that many of you lifestyle athletes face – having to balance fatigue from training along with work, family and your social life (if you still have any of that left).


It’s no easy feat, but we do it all the same and question ourselves from time to time. The all-familiar aches, sores and niggles are back – though I didn’t ask for them – and I need more sleep than ever.


But this will be a journey to remember, as I aim to do better in every way, including taking care of my health more than ever. The pandemic has certainly showed the importance of health and also how we should embrace uncertainty. I will need all the help and support I can get!

PHOTO: @CHERYLTAYSG


Focus on sustainability


Besides bettering myself on the sporting side, I will also be doing better for the environment and those in need. With the support of BMW Group Asia, I will be raising funds for their long-time beneficiary - the National Cancer Centre Singapore.


We will also be embarking on beach clean-ups and other conservational and educational activities. You will be able to join me on these too – so follow me on my Instagram to stay updated with the dates of the activities.


Both environmental and social sustainability are important areas for BMW Group Asia and I'm thrilled for this opportunity to do my part for sustainability.


After all, we do have a responsibility towards this planet that we are living in. Do better for yourself, for the people you love, for the environment, for people in need and for what you believe in. So make this year your year too and join me to do better!


#SportPlusSG #BerlinMarathon2022 #RoadToBerlin #CherylTay #BMWAsia