I had a very exhausting running weekend last May 16 and 17. It was Saturday night that I ran a 6k, Color Manila: Black light Edition in Filinvest City and then, Sunday morning, a 10k run, Cowboy Grill’s paRUN ng Cowboy at CCP Complex. Even though it was only 16k in total distance and I had a few hours of rest before the next run, it was a bit hard because I only had a few hours of rest prior to the first running event (because I had a shift the night before and got home on Saturday morning) and the travel distance and time between locations. Originally, I was only suppose to have just one running event for the month of May (because of budget constraints) and that was the Cowboy Grill run. I got lucky that I won a free Color Manila race kit from a facebook contest sponsored by Filinvest City, the venue partner. And that’s why it turned into a Buy 1 Take 1 running weekend. So, let’s start with the first run of that weekend.
Color Manila: Black light Edition I was eyeing 4 running events last May, RunMania and The Philippine Red Cross’ Across The Borders run, Makiling Challenge by UP, PaRUN ng Cowboy by Cowboy Grill, and Color Manila Black Light Edition sponsored by Brother. Due to budget constraints that time, I can only pick one run, it has to be for a reasonable price and won’t have a conflict with my working schedule. I ended up picking the Cowboy Grill run covering all those categories. But, I still want to join the CM run because I like the dri-fit shirt, event location, the black light head lamp, the Brother pillow they’re giving away for the 6k runners, and the Black Light theme of the run. Luckily, Filinvest City sponsored a facebook sharing contest, which I luckily won, so I was very happy not just for joining the event, but also for winning my very first free race kit.
We arrived at the event site more than an hour early and the place was already crowded. The ambient lighting helped make the place look visually appealing. Things that glow (colored powder, reflectors, neon color shoes, etc.) under the well-placed black lights were an eye candy.
Things got more energetic during the pre-race introduction and warm-up exercise session. CM Ambassador and Philippine Volcanoes member, Chris Everingham came out to start the warm-up exercises, but before he started it, he surprised the crowd with the appearance of some celebrities and popular athletes. And the crowd got even more fired-up.
The race started with another good intro, with light dancers and some confetti canons. Like last year’s Color Manila: Glow Paint Edition, the first 2 kilometers of the run is the most exciting with colored powder stations and water fired from water guns and a fire truck. The colored powder once released into the air envelops an area making it look like a foggy Silent Hill with rainbows and it tastes like the old aspilet tablets we used to take every time we have fever (dunno if aspilet still exists in the market today). Blue colored powder has a distinct, nice smell, like air freshener. After that 2 kilometers, it turns into a normal run, but still has visual flair in the dark segments of the route, when the black light headlamps are on and runners close to each other. It’s like last year’s Energizer Night Race with the headlamps on, the black lights look like fireflies in the dark, and it’s a stream of black light fireflies. On the other side of the route, along RITM and The Palms was Runtertainment’s (remember them? the creator of Outbreak Manila zombie run. Still waiting for the next zombie adventure run) Slidefest. It was kinda quiet and I haven’t seen much or felt the activity from the other side, so I can’t comment much about the happenings there. I planned on slowing down to enjoy the run (and because I still have a mild knee injury back then), but on our way back, some of the color stations already ran out of colored powder (there are some marshals/volunteers offering face paints), so I decided to dash a bit and just finish it early.
I decided to grab the freebies (color powder packet, water, and the Brother pillow) as soon as possible and then have some photo ops around the activity area and rest as we wait for the night out party, Color Manila’s awesome post-race party concert.
As expected, Color Manila’s Night Out party was as awesome as ever. There were games before the party started, they got good DJs, and the energy level is off the charts. One incident was the premature release of the color powder. Some people got excited and started throwing the color powder all over the place which prompted the DJ to stop the music and asked the crowd to hold on for a bit. And even though some color powder already exploded, there was still enough to color powder to turn the place into the rainbow fog version of Silent Hill again.
I was having so much fun, but unfortunately, we had to leave a a bit early because I still have another run coming up in a few hours. Had to go home. take a bath, and rest for a bit. Really disappointed that I couldn’t join the party all the way to the end. Too see color festival segment of the party (sorry for the low res quality, I wan’t able to check the settings before I started recording, got too excited), check it out here: https://www.facebook.com/giancarlo.rodil/videos/1102824793067572/?l=2457828989417768667
paRUN ng COWBOY
My 2nd run of the weekend was scheduled on Sunday morning at 5 am. We got home around 12 midnight, so I didn’t sleep, just bathe and rest for awhile. I left home around 3 am, hoping that I will arrive minutes before the 5 am gunstart. Unfortunately, I wasn’t lucky this time. I took the bus from Alabang to Ayala, then Ayala to MOA and plan to walk from there, but it was already 15 minutes before 5 when I arrived at MOA, and CCP complex was a little over 3km away. I did try to do some running to lessen the time, but I don’t wanna push it because of my mild knee injury and I still haven’t fully rested after Color Manila. I arrived late, minutes pass 5 (probably 5:05 am), but luckily, the 10k run did not start on time, almost 20 minutes pass 5, in fact. There are only a few participants, seems like less than a thousand runners in total. The route from CCP complex to Roxas blvd, then U turn before Luneta, then to the overpass going to Baclaran tehn back to CCP complex again. It was an underwhelming experience because the Color Manila event hours ago was so much fun and so full of energy that it rendered this run like a simple Sunday morning training run. And also because it started at the time when the sun is already out and the heat was a bit more than normal and I felt thirsty most of the time. Alaska Cycle Asia was also happening at the same time as the run, so the flyover route was shared by runners and cyclists. No major accidents involving both parties happened at the time, but it can be dangerous and uncomfortable to share the narrow road. Lastly, there seems to be a distance discrepancy. I feel like the route was more than 10 kilometers and my Nike+ Running app recorded a total distance of 10.94 kilometers. I wasn’t in the mood to run fast nor enjoying the run because of the heat, but at least I got a nice cowboy hat and a red scarf.
It was an okay run, it’s a run for a cause (for the benefit of the kids of Cottolengco Filipino), and the registration fee wasn’t too expensive. It just felt average because I ran a very fun run just a few hours ago.
THE EXPERIENCE of HAVING 2 RUNS….
in one weekend with just a few hours in between is a mixed bag. I think it’s better to have one 16 km run than to have a 6 km run then a 10 km run later. The runs are doable and the only reason I did not like the experience was because I only had less than 3 hours of sleep prior to running Color Manila and didn’t have proper rest before the next run. Also, the fact that you cannot fully maximize or experience what the 1st event has to offer because you have to pack up early and prepare for the next one. Then there’s the feeling that one event had upstaged the other as with the case of my experience with 1st event being more fun than the 2nd plus the fact that you have already given most of your energy to the 1st event. So, my advice is try to have just one running event per weekend and enjoy what that event has to offer, maximize the experience.
– Both events offered just water for hydration. No Gatorade, Pocari Sweat, Powerade, Bacchus, etc.
– More than 7,000 participants on Color Manila: Black Light. My estimate is less than 1,000 participants on paRUN ng Cowboy.
– Both were non-competitive runs and does not have RFID timing chips or a timer at the finish line, so PRs don’t matter.