Posted in 32 Kilometers, Afroman Distance, fun run, running, running event, Runrio Trilogy

32 kilometers, 75 kilos, 3.5 hours… Runrio Trilogy leg 2

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It’s my heaviest weight before a race.

In my quest to finally complete and graduate Runrio Trilogy, leg 2 proved to be quite challenging as I ran the race with my heaviest weight yet. I usually weigh around 67 to 69 kilos (147 – 152 lbs.) and I’m very comfortable with that weight range since it doesn’t pose any problems while running and I don’t get injuries after a race. After the previous night’s shift at the office, I only had very little sleep (3+ hours) and when I stepped on the scale, my weight on race day is 75.1 kilos (165 lbs). Add to that my pre-race jitters which make me feel like I need to poop (and I think I did twice that day) and I already have a lot of insecurities.

I arrived at SM Mall of Asia around 12 midnight, the weather was windy, cold, and some raindrops, it feels like there’s a storm coming. A good running buddy of mine, Odip was there. He wanted to run, but since he wasn’t able to join leg 1 and not qualified to complete the trilogy, and just decided to hang out and see some running friends. He offered to take my baggage to his car, so I don’t have to line up at the baggage counter. He also introduced me to some of his acquaintances from Team Rundom Warriors. Before the race, he let me use his brand new Xioami Huami Amazfit Stratos GPS running watch that I recommended to him (instead of a Garmin). Of course, I couldn’t say no and I plan to buy an Amazfit watch too, so it was the perfect opportunity to test run the product.

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With Odip before the race.

The race started at 2 am (the earliest gun start of my recent races). Because the weather is quite good (none of that torturous humidity of ASICS Relay a week ago), I moved at my usual pace of 5:30 to 6 minutes per kilometers. I had to take a leak at the first portalet I saw (the one near GSIS in Diokno blvd.) and my first drink at the aid station in Macapagal blvd. I was able to hold a decent pace for the first 10 kilometers by reaching it at 58 minutes. I moved at a relaxed pace and to be in optimum condition, I drink a cup of Gatorade and then water at every station. My extra weight finally takes its toll when I reached the Kalayaan flyover. Going up is an exhausting experience and I feel like my stamina is depleting rapidly. I had to slowdown and walk a lot even on the flat parts of the flyover. I only ran when the flyover goes downhill. Since the route is restricted only to the entry point of BGC via the flyover, we had to pass through three U turns. First U turn at the end of the flyover then go back up (and down) again to take another U-turn just a few hundred meters away from the flyover entry point. Then go back to Kalayaan flyover again (this time at the opposite lane) all the way to the end for the last U turn back to the finish line. After the dizzying Kalayaan flyover route, I was able to relax and let the music on my Sony mp3 player dictate my pace. Although it was slower at 6:30 to 7 minutes per kilometer because of fatigue, I’m at ease.

The last 6 kilometers was the most excruciating experience. Crossing the road back to the area near World Trade Center and CCP Complex can be stressful because the runners had to sprint against the road vehicles (both parties want to cross the road first, but the marshals were able to handle the situation just fine). I started to feel a sting on my crotch area, chaffing made its presence known. At that point I was alternating between walking and slow jog (compared to walking and stopping only when I reach an aid station to re-hydrate). The hardest part was running on Macapagal blvd (after passing World Trade Center) and back to Mall of Asia. When I try to run or jog, it was only because my heart was pushing me to do it, but my body couldn’t keep up any more. I feel so tired that I just wanna sit down for a moment and rest. But, I didn’t because if I stop, I will lose momentum. My heart is dragging my body. And then, approaching Diokno blvd (GSIS street), one of my favorite power song, Van Halen’s Jump played and it gave me a much needed temporary boost. Then I slowed down again in the last 2 kilometers.

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With less than 2 kilometers left, I forced myself to smile. Photo by Pinoy Fitness.
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Last kilometer at Seaside Boulevard. My thoughts at the time, I just want this to end already. Photo by Starting Line PH.

When I saw the Finish Line timer at 03:23, I think I still have a shot to finish this at 3:30 or less. So, I still gave it a push, short bursts of run, walk, repeat. Last 300 meters, me and the other runners around me (I think there’s 7 or 8 of us) slowed down a bit to make sure that the photographers get a decent shot of us in action (like pretending we’re not tired or about to pass out).

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My final action pose before crossing the finish line. My hand gesture is that of two guns about to shoot someone who doesn’t want to stop. hahaha. Photo by Bicolano Runner.

And I finally finished the race in … dum dum dum…. 3 hours and 30 minutes, well 3:29 for the chip time. I’m very satisfied with the Sub 3.5 finish because despite weighing 75 kilos, I was able to finish the race with a decent time.

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Trying to figure out how to stop and save my run in this Amazfit Stratos. Photo by R30N Photography.
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Special thanks to running buddy Odip for lending me this beautiful Amazfit Stratos.
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The Official Time.
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With Team Rundom Warriors after the race.

I wasn’t able to take photos of the winners of the Barkada Run and Buddy Run categories because I was taking a dump at the time (and it felt good). But, I was able to catch the winners of the major categories.

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Winners of the 21k category Female.
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Winners of the 21k category Male.
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Winners of the 32k category Female.
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The Kenyan-dominated winners of the 32k category Male.
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And the Leg 2 lucky winner of the Garmin watch.
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Closing show by The Voice’s Team Sarah.

I enjoyed leg 2 of Runrio Trilogy. It was challenging, but finishing the race with my heaviest weight ever without any major problems or injuries after the run feels like sweet victory.  The event is well-handled, but I heard that some 32k runners weren’t able to get medals because they ran out. This is a recurring problem in some running events and should be dealt with fairly. Looking forward and very excited for Leg 3 on September, the final race and to finally become a graduate of Runrio Trilogy Class of 2018.

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Two down, one more to go.
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The medal is beautiful, but the only drawback of the design is that you have to remove the lanyard to connect them.
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I prefer milk over coffee though. A generous loot bag which also included a mineral water and Gatorade.

 

Posted in adventure, hiking, mountain trekking, travel, trekking

It’s still dirty, but doesn’t involve a lot of sucking!… Mount Makiling Day Hike

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Not lost in the woods! Photo by Gerlie

My final activity during the Memorial Day weekend is a hike on Mount Makiling. I always marveled at the beauty of Mt Makiling every time I see it from afar and on the horizon of South Luzon Expressway. The first time I set foot on the mountain was last year when I joined Nuun Dirt School for trail runners and I always wanted to climb the mountain again and this time at a slower and easier pace. And since it’s still summer time, the mountain is almost free from the native blood addicts, the limatiks (leeches). For this hike, I asked my college mate, Gerlie, to accompany me since she is very familiar with the mountain and climbed it five times already. We agreed to meet up at Crossing Calamba at 6 am to take the jeepney from there to UP Los Baños. I arrived 15 minutes late though (I got proper sleep, but my mind and body probably still have some left over sensation from the exhausting ASICS Relay and the easy pace Run 4 Ur Life fun run of the previous days). We started the trek a few minutes before 8 am.

It was a really fine day, still have that summer heat, but beautifully transitioning from cloudy to sunny back and forth. And since it’s a Monday, there are barely any hikers that day. We are moving at a decent pace while exchanging stories about life, the universe, and random stuff.

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A quick stop to take a photo of this, the place I want to visit next time I hike in Makiling.

We arrived at Agila Base around 9 am. I wasn’t able track the distance because my Soleus GPS watch is having a hard time connecting to a satellite, but my estimate is we walked around 5 kilometers in under 1.5 hours.

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Approaching Agila (Eagle) Base.
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The Eagle bird has landed.

We took a quick break at Agila Base, I rest whilst Gerlie went to the nearby Sari Sari store to buy a 500 ml water to add to her 2 liter water pack (1 liter already consumed) and some bananas.

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A T-Rex probably passed by this trail.
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The rare and elusive Rafflesia.

When heavy rains caused a land slide last year (I think it happened on November), Mount Makiling was temporarily closed. When it was re-opened this year, a new and longer trail was created for hikers to move around the dangerous area.

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Signs and Bulletin Boards (like the one with the information about the Mud Springs and Rafflesia) has been erected along the way when the trail was re-opened this year.
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The area between Station 16 and 18 has been closed and an alternate path has been created.
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The new trail goes down and up. It may add some difficulty depending on your fitness level.
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Ropes are added which is very useful especially when you’re slowly guiding yourself down or pulling yourself up. It’s a necessity when the ground is slippery and muddy after a rainy day.
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The first part of the new trail is the descent. The middle part is flat grounds. Then you ascend going to Station 18.
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Be mindful of the No Entry signs, it’s for your own damn good (safety).
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Once you ascended to Station 18, you realize how short and easy the trail from 16 to 18 is. The landslide area is dangerous, don’t take the risk.
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My favorite station. It gets tougher and rougher after this.

We caught up with a group of hikers resting on Station 22 and we took a break when they left. By this time the 900 ml of water I brought is almost depleted. Didn’t realize that I’m gonna be consuming a lot of water on this hike. I underestimated the heat. Station 16 to 18 is challenging, but the hardest part of the hike is up ahead. Except for one that sucked the area near my shin, we did not encounter any more limatiks (or snakes) along the way. We caught up again with the group of hikers who stopped because one of their peers got cramps. They let us through because it’s taking them quite a while.

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You can stop and rest at Station 26 because of the view deck…
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The view from Station 26. Look at that beautiful sights. Note the cloud above, it started to drizzle near the peak.
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The ladder has been reinforced.
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Distances between the Stations 23 on wards is short, but a difficult climb. This is the part where you use your hands a lot to pull yourself up.

After an exhausting climb (I can see steam coming out of my body), we finally reached Peak 2 passed 11:30 am (I remember looking at my watch and it’s 11:47 am). We took a long rest, savor the rewarding feeling, and eat. Too bad there’s no view deck at Peak 2.

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Kudos for reaching Peak 2!
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Resting at the highest peak of Mount Makiling. 1,090 MASL.
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Head held up high and feeling high on a high place.
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So, from Station 1 to 30 (Peak 2) it’s 9.4 kilometers (18.8 km out and back).

The group of hikers finally arrived at the peak when we were about to pack up and descend. I offered the guy who got cramps my Relispray Plus to spray on the affected area and he accepted it. I even offered to take their photos so everyone can be in the frame. When going for mountain hikes, it’s good to be nice to everyone you meet along the way, smile, greet them, and give them good vibes. Since I ran out of water, I asked Girlie for a small amount before we start descending at noon time.

Going down the mountain is easier and faster, but the ground is a bit muddy because of the drizzle earlier, so we proceeded with caution. We met another group of hikers who were ascending, a bunch of youngsters, four girls and a guy (whom Girlie told me she saw at Agila Base resting earlier). I greeted them and told them to be careful along the way.

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I wonder what that hill is called and where the path to it is located.
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One last peek at Station 26 view deck as we descend. The clouds have cleared now.
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I can see the bottom already.
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When grabbing on to tree branches or roots to help pull yourself up, make sure that you take a closer look first. You don’t wanna make the mistake of grabbing this thing.

It took us more than 40 minutes to reach Station 22 because we had to move slowly through the slippery terrain (also spotted a limatik on the ground). I slipped once, but didn’t go down all the way like I did the first time I tried running down. After passing through Station 18 to 15 (where I also slipped again) the trail gets easier again. We ran out of water, but still had a good conversation and stories to tell as we move along to make pace seem faster. When we finally reached Agila Base again, we took a long rest and refueled with soda (and I also drank buko juice). The walk back to Station 1 is easier now, but we took our time during the walk, taking photos and just enjoying the soothing sights and sounds and the beautiful day.

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Such a beautiful place on a great day.
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Selling the drama. Photo by Gerlie.
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Centenarian trees!
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Crafted by nature, living for over a hundred years in this mystical place.
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Taller and will live longer than us, mere humans.

We reached station 1 around 4 pm. We cleaned ourselves (didn’t bring extra shorts or underwear, just a shirt because I thought I would never get too sweaty and dirty. I’m an idiot) and ate at a Jollibee outside UP Gate before heading home.

It was a great day to hike Mount Makiling and summer time is ideal if you want to avoid the friendly neighborhood limatiks (just have to tolerate the hot weather). This concludes my 3-day Memorial Day weekend activities. The ASICS Relay was exhausting, but a blast; Run 4 Ur Life was a good run (even without sleep), and Mount Makiling Day Hike is therapy and I just want to climb the mystic mountain again. Thanks to Gerlie for accompanying me and making this hike happen. Next time, I plan to visit the mud springs and flat rocks, and someday maybe we’ll do the Makiling Traverse (MakTrav).

Posted in 5k, 5km, fun run, obstacle run, run for a cause, running event

It’s not life-threatening, but still… RUN 4 UR LIFE

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The FSL Runners. Me (I’m in the dark), Gab, Melvin, Johnmel, Joven, sir Gary, Marifel, Mark, Ruby, Roxie, and the BCUK girls whom I never got the names. Photo taken by Jek.

Our Run 4 Ur Life 5k fun run was scheduled on May 27th, a day after ASICS Relay. Well, actually just a few hours after ASICS Relay because we finished that race before 12 mn and we took some time to rest and got caught in traffic (really bad traffic, like there’s a major vehicular accident that caused it). My plan to get at least an hour of sleep didn’t happen because we arrived in Alabang around 2 am and we are suppose to leave at 3 am. After parting ways with Juanepri, Nelson, and Marlon, I got to the office before 2:30 am. Some of my office mates are still sleeping and only saw Gab in the pantry. I rest for a few minutes and ate at a 7-Eleven store nearby. Everyone was up and ready when I got back to the office to prepare myself. We boarded the van at 3 am and everything seemed smooth sailing except for the fact that Ruby and Mich have not arrived yet. After contacting them, an agreement was made to wait for Ruby at the Caltex gas station near the 2md entrance to Northgate Cyberzone. Mich was still in South Station, but we had to leave without her since it’s already passed 3:30 am and gun start is at 4:45 am. The driver knows his way around and we arrived in CCP Complex at 4:20. We quickly made our way to the activity area and still made it for the warm-up exercise.

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Running with whatever’s left in the tank. Photo by Running Photographers.

The race started at 4:30 am, 15 minutes earlier than advertised. Since most of my office mates are first time joiners in the running scene, I took the position of sweeper and will be pacing with whoever is at the tail end. All of us got separated early since the others wanted to run their own pace and I only saw Roxie and Marifel as the last runners in the group, so I paced with them. Sometimes, they catch up with Mark and Jek, and I switch to trail them. But, they don’t want to be the last runners of the group and they sped up and I’m left with Roxie and Marifel again.

The 3k and 5k fun run are advertised as obstacles runs with wind, fire, and water-themed obstacles. I got curious about it and I thought there will be fire jumps like the ones in Guerilla Race series but what I saw was underwhelming. I wasn’t able to take a photo of the supposedly first obstacle so I’ll just describe it. After the first kilometer, there is an area with colored powder scattered on the ground and fire extinguishers on the sidewalk with some marshals standing beside them. It’s obvious that this is the wind or air obstacle and even my tired brain calculated that the extinguishers will be used to generate air and scatter the colored powder. But, we passed by this section without anything happening. Maybe it was for later because it was still dark and I’m not sure fire extinguishers are the ideal way to spread the colored powder. I don’t have a PhD for Fire Extinguisher Science, but from what I’ve seen they discharge cold air and with thick fog-like effect (or maybe it depends on the type of extinguisher). Anyways, moving on.  Marifel and Roxie are doing just fine. My advice to them is to just take it easy, no need to run, jogging will do and enjoy. Then we approached the 2nd obstacle, fire.

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..And this is it. Fire Performers.
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These girls are on fiiiiiiire! They are a sight to behold… not just their beauty, the flames too. Deadly combination. Don’t play with fire or your gonna get burned.

The Fire Performers don’t get in your way or attempt to block you like in a game of patintero. They’re not really obstacles, more like eye candy that lit up the dark road of Diokno Boulevard (the one along GSIS). Their performance is mesmerizing though. I’m like a moth attracted to the flames. There’s also a gay guy who lit his face with a mobile phone screen (or was it a flashlight) and screams to scare the crap out of the runners. Again, not an obstacle, but it’s funny.

A few hundred meters after the fire spectacle is supposedly the water or tsunami obstacle and here it is…

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it’s a fire truck with water sprayed towards the path of the runners.

It can be considered as an obstacle if you don’t want to get wet. And no need to worry, the pressure is set to safe levels and won’t knock down the runners. A U-turn follows after the water obstacle and I think we are already halfway through. At some point along the route, Roxie spotted Mich (she made it, late start though). Then we pass by the color powder and fire extinguisher area and nothing happened. I guess they skipped the air obstacle then. Marifel and Roxie are moving just fine and will make it to the one hour cutoff time. Sometimes Marifel will lead that charge and Roxie is compelled to follow.

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Just the 3 of us…. and some guy passing through.
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Why run when you can jump!… thankfully my recurring calf cramps didn’t kick in.
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Tri-Forceless!

Last few hundred meters and everyone in our group seemed to have crossed the finish line. Marifel dashed first and then Roxie and finally me. I didn’t time this run with my Nike Run Club app because I’m on sweeper duty, but I check the time on my watch and it’s 45 minutes. Marifel and Roxie finished the run in 45 minutes. Not bad for newbies. We meet up with the others in the activity area.

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5k Finishers.
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We are not limping here. We’re just wacky. And after this shot, we were asked to run towards the cameraman for a shoot to be included in the post event video. Check out the video below. Photo by one of the Run 4 Ur Life host.
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With the co-race director, model, and triathlete Faith Garcia. Photo by Melvin
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They got hyped up by Momoland’s BBoom BBoom. Photo by Running Photographers.
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They enjoyed the run and loved the dance. Photo by Running Photographers.

So, about the event, it would’ve been fine without the so-called obstacles because the way they advertised it is misleading. They should’ve just called it surprises or elemental effects. Aside from the air-themed effect that didn’t happen (I didn’t see the other finishers covered with colored powder), what happened to the colored powder that should’ve been included in the race kit? I thought there will be a segment where everyone parties or dances with the colored powder thrown into the the air like Color Manila’s Color Festival. And what’s up with the earlier than advertised gun start? our run was suppose to start at 4:45 am, but it started early at 4:30 am. It’s better early than late, but what about those who were expecting it to start on time and decided to go to the event a bit later. Those are just my minor gripes about this running event, but all in all, it’s still a good fun run. My office mates loved the running and dancing, I had a relaxing run, and the organizer is very generous when it comes to the raffle. There are so many raffle prizes (like consumable products, Skechers shoes, myphone mobiles phones, and Sharp electric fans) and winners (including one of our own who won sports drinks gift bags). And it’s a run for a cause, for the benefit of Dialysis PH Support Group Inc. so you run and feel good for helping people. I recommended this running event because it is suited for first timers and I’m so glad that my office mates enjoyed their first running event together. I hope that the next Run 4 Ur Life is just as fun or even better.

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The loot bag and its contents.

EPILOGUE:   I was waiting for my running pal, Odip to finish his 21k run at the event. Too bad we had to leave early and I never got the chance to see him. I went home with 26 hours of no sleep, but I still function well. I estimate that I still have 35% of energy left in me because I don’t feel sleepy. Two friends advised me to never do it again. Good advice.

This is part 2 of my 3-part Memorial Day Weekend activities. The last activity is the Mount Makiling day hike and the story will be published some time next week.

Posted in 10 kilometers, 10k, 42.195 kilometers, 42k, fun run, Marathon, Relay Race, running event

Funtastic for 4….ASICS Relay 2018

ASICS Relay first launched in Singapore in 2015. This year, it has finally made its way to the Philippines and it’s one of the most fun running events I have ever joined. This is the first time I joined a relay race and the rule is simple, form a team of four runners, the first runner runs a specified distance and after the completion of the distance, the first runner tags the next runner in the team by passing the baton (in this race, it’s a snap band) to complete the same distance and then passes it to the next until all four runners complete the distance. There are 2 categories available, half-marathon and full marathon and I picked the full marathon to maximize the experience. My team which I named Rogue Rebels (because I want my moniker to be plural) consists of my two office mates, Nelson and Juanepri, and a neighborhood runner and short distance podium finisher Marlon.

Marlon and I meet up at the bus stop in Mayapa, Calamba and will meet Neslon at Starmall Alabang. Despite some slight difficulty in catching a bus to Mall of Asia in Ayala Makati (usual lack of buses and too many stranded passengers), the three of us arrived early at the event site. Juanepri had a business to attend to said he will make it before the gun start (and he better because he is the second runner in the line up). I immediately claimed our race kits so we can have a lot of spare time to relax and enjoy the sights and sounds of the activity area.

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Tri-Force! Photo from ASICS Relay facebook page.
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Nelson photobombing the beautiful sunset.
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Me, Marlon, Nelson, Juanepi (made it in time), and that smiling photobomber in the background. Unfortunately, they ran out of XL-sized green shirt so I picked an orange shirt for Juanepri.
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Fireworks display to kick off the first ASICS Relay in the Philippines.
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The snap band which serves as the baton that runners pass to the next runner at the transition area.
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Ready Runner One.

As the Team Leader I was assigned as the first runner by default and I’m very nervous because I feel like there’s a lot of weight on my shoulders and I have to perform well as the opener. The distance to complete is 10.5 kilometers, but the route is 5.25 kilometers and the runners will run the loop twice. The first part of the route was within SM by the Bay and it’s very cramped and hard to slip through the other runners. Add the body heat to the humid temperature and you have a hot and sweaty run. I feel dehydrated early in the race and had to drink at the first hydration station in J.W. Diokno Blvd. Although I sweat a lot more than the average person, in this run it feels like it was even amplified. I mean, I can run 6-8 kilometers without taking a sip and feel fine. In this run, I felt like I will pass out if I don’t slowdown to take a drink. I barely finished 5 kilometers in 30 minutes and it gets worst in the 2nd half. There’s now a lot of space between the runners and it helped lessen the heat, but my stamina is drained. I can’t even run my normal 5:30/km pace. I just kept going to survive and finish my run. I had a slight boost when the dancing LED mascots gave me high fives, after that I walked, then jog, then walk again longer than usual. I started jogging non-stop at the last 300 meters, but a lot of runners behind me started sprinting. I kept moving at a steady pace just to be safe and didn’t mind my finishing time. I just want to reach the transition area and pass the baton to Juanepri. He wasn’t on the front line, but was able to make his way through quickly. I was able to make my exit safely, exhausted, but glad that my run is over. Nelson spotted me and gave me a high five.

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Resting at the transition area. Check out my bloated belly. That’s 70+ kilos for you.
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This is what the transition area looks like. Runners 2, 3, and 4 separated and the incoming runners posted on the huge LED screens.

Now that I’ve got a lot of time in my hands, I decided to leave Nelson and walk around the activity area to get some drinks because I’m still dehydrated. A bottle of Pocari Sweat and Nature’s Spring water and a few minutes of rest later, I went to the sidelines near the finish line to watch the other runners. Nelson joined me and I also spotted a former office mate and runner Rodolfo David. He was supposed to run at the event but due to an injury, he gave his race kit to a friend.

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A wild fellow runner and former office mate appeared.

I enjoyed watching the runners, their efforts can be seen in their faces and the way they run. Some we’re confused and almost entered the finish line instead of the transition area. I saw one runner being carried and escorted, poor guy probably collapsed from the heat. Another one fell right in front of us due to cramp. He was immediately assisted, got up, and continued his run. That’s the heart to finish.

I easily identified my running buddy and marathoner-in-the-making friend Diane. I know it’s her because of her attire and running form. Nelson and I saw Juanepri about to pass by his first loop. We called him by shouting his name, but he couldn’t hear us because he was listening to music. He was running in a slow but relaxed pace.

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My running buddy and trainee Diane finishing her 2nd loop. She was also confused and almost entered the finish line lane. She was immediately redirected to the proper lane.
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Juanepri finally saw us as he finishes his 2nd loop.

I told Nelson to be alert and ready in the transition area as Marlon is about to make his run and it won’t take as long as we did. I went to meet Juanepri and he said he almost had cramps and had to slow down. He stretched, re-hydrated, and rest whilst I went to the sidelines again to watch the runners. It didn’t take long for Marlon to finish his run, I wasn’t able to catch him in the first loop, but saw him as he finish the 2nd one. I went to the transition area again to meet him and it’s all down to our final runner Nelson to close the show (our show).

I easily spotted Nelson before finishing the first loop and gave him the good luck middle finger. I estimated that it will take him 35-40 minutes to finish the 2nd loop so I tried to look for Diane to congratulate her for finishing her run. She sent me a message informing me that she’s in the transition area but I wasn’t able to catch her there on time. I found out later that she left to eat hotdog and she was calling me on my phone but wasn’t able to answer. Based on my estimate, Nelson could be approaching soon, so I had to get near the finish line to take his photo.

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Nelson closing the show…
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..and Nelson has left the building!

Nelson finished faster than expected and he ran shirtless as I suggested (because I told him that some of the runners probably just took off their shirt just to show their abs. I told him to do the same and show his singular ab). Way to go Nelson.

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Our official race result. Rank 102 out of 302 teams and 41 out of 83 all male team. Yep, it was a tough race, my 10k PR in Mall of Asia is 53 minutes (PinoyFitness Sub1 10k Challenge 2015 chip time), but in this run I barely made it to Sub-1 and the last 500 meters took 3 minutes for me to complete. And even our fastest runner was slow at 50 minutes. At least all of us finished safe. There were multiple reports of people collapsing including the two runners I saw.

It was one helluva night for all of us, we all had a hard time, but we had fun. ASICS Relay is the best run I had so far this year. It’s fun because it’s a team run and it’s very well presented. There are only a few gripes I have with this run and first is the race kit distribution. It was rescheduled from May 24 and 25 to May 25 and May 26 starting 12 noon to 8 pm. I decided to pick up our race kit on May 25 because I’m on leave that day and will be coming from our office in Alabang after my shift. I was there early and when it was time to pick up the race kits at exactly 12 noon, we were told that there was a delay with the arrival of the kits and pick up will be at 1 pm. This got me worried because we have ticket reservations to see Deadpool 2 in Ayala Mall Solenad in Nuvali at 3:30 pm and I might not make it on time. Some of the other runners got upset and that person in charge gave us options to wait until 3 pm (they said 1 pm earlier) for the race kits to arrive because it was on hold at customs. Or we can have it delivered. The race bibs are available, but the shirts and other stuff are not. So, I decided to just get the race bibs instead and still made it on time to see Deadpool 2. As compensation for those who wait that day, they offer free printing of names on their race shirts. Another one is the lack of photographers. There are some in the activity area, but I haven’t seen any official photos posted as of today (June 4) and there are no photographers along the route. If you’re a serious runner, photos are not that important, but let’s admit it, we do want to see a photo of ourselves running and it is a big deal for those who run for fun. Those are just minor flaws of the event, everything else is well done and organized. I’m definitely looking forward to next year’s event.

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One of the best-looking medal I ever had. Doubles as a bottle opener too in case you want to celebrate your run with beer.
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The stuff inside this nice ASICS backpack.

This run is part 1 of my busy Memorial Day weekend. A few hours after ASICS Relay is my 2nd run of the week, Run 4 Ur Life with my other office mates and that story is part 2 and to be posted soon.