Monday, March 30, 2009
Men's Health Miracle Run (March 29 2009) -Post race
It has been some time since I ran in UP so I was excited to do my long run here again. I woke up at a very early time of 3:30AM just so I can finish early and avoid the burning sun.
I got to UP Theatre at about 4:45AM, did one loop around the Oval and saw the Men's Health Starting point, a good 800 meters from where I parked my car. So I went back to the car and moved it closer to the venue and started running again. Luckily, weather was nice and there was no rain today (prayer answered!).
At about 5:30AM, tired already from doing my runs (total of 8.71 km with pace between 6:26 min to 7:20 min), I went back to my car, changed my shirt to that of Men's Health singlet and took a drink from the water/ Gatorade that I left in my front seat.
I was at the race area by 5:45AM and met some friends there as we await the 6:00AM gun time. 6:00AM came and went and still we were there!!! But I didn't mind as I sat on the stairs and just used that leeway to stretch my legs and rest a little bit for this race. I intend to run fast for this race with a sub-60 target. I don't know if my goal is achievable since energy level depleted from early morning run but I had hopes for it. This will be a good indication for me in terms of my endurance as first time doing a race with a long run prior to it.
The race started at around 6:30AM. I wasn't sure of exact time as my Garmin was semi-busted and I didn't want to provoke it as feared that it would die on me during this race!
I kept at a steady pace but it was hard keeping it as sun fully up and there were parts in the race where there were no trees and hence no shade as well. I saw the first water station early in the race but for some reason, the cups were empty and the attendant was filling each cup slowly and giving it to the runners one by one. This will take a long time if I will wait for my water and decided to skip it.
Sadly, this happened again in the next few water stations and I just chose those which had the smallest lines in them. This took a turn for the worst when all water stations ran out of plastic cups!!! Runners were stopping to drink from the spouts by having the water poured onto their hands or placing their mouths a few inches away from it! Oh man! This was horribly horribly disappointing and for a hot summer day too!
I ended up having one cup from the water station, two handfuls from two other water stations (which were just a sip or two as could only get so much from cupped hands) and got a cup of water from Runnex water station, which weren't even part of this race! I expected more from Men's Health as previous races even had Gatorade bottles given out to runners!
I was getting dizzy and tired from the heat and dehydration but just pushing myself and saying, that it's just a few kms left to go. I envision a huge cup of water at the finish line and that kept me going.
Finally, I crossed the finish line at a time of 56:16. A new 10km PR! And nearly a minute faster than my previous 10km PR of 57:08 at PSE Bull Run 2009. But at that moment, it didn't sink in yet as I headed immediately to the water station to get my fill of water and proceeded to the staging area to get some other freebies.
I got a Men's Health magazine for answering a race survey. There was a question I left unanswered which was "Promptness of race results" as clearly that hasn't happened yet! I also got a bag of chips, some multi-vitamins, and cardboard fan from various booths here.
I met my friends as each one finished the 10km race. We chatted for a while and took some pictures.
This was a terrible race for me, given the most important thing they lacked, which was ample attendants/ plastic cups for the water stations. Not having the cups filled up before the race started would mean losing seconds waiting for that to be done, effectively giving you a slower finish time. Just a ratio of 1 attendant per water station if memory serves me correctly. There should be enough cups for all racers. On the 2nd leg of race, all cups were gone! Some roads were opened for cars so we had to go around them too.
As for my PR, it is a PR but for a 9.74km distance! So, even the distance was short-sighted by the organizers. My average pace for this race was at 5:46 minutes/ km (one second faster than Bull Run 2009) so I was happy given I started the race a little tired already. And I guess this will still be counted as a 10km RACE PR for me.
On a good side, I liked the freebies and of course, the awesome singlet. There are only a few singlets that I can wear to a race or to gym and I count this as one of them! Very nice material and very much worth keeping for a long time.
I also must remember that this race is for A GREAT CAUSE so I have to look at the bigger picture as to why this run existed in the first place.
Picture with Super fast but still super humble and super friendly Vener. Thanks to RunUnlimited for the photo!
After the race, I ventured for an additional 8km run (I did only 7.82km) after a quick change of socks and shoes. I did some stretching afterwards and as I headed home, I couldn't resist buying myself a copy of Philippine Star as my Condura Race souvenir.
My Garmin finally conked out 5 minutes after the Miracle Run so I guess it was a miracle that it survived that long to record that race. For the additional miles I had to do, I used Per's Garmin to record it. Up to now, my Garmin is broken and can't be turned on! Luckily, the seller offered to take it back and replace it for me. Phew!
Total KM ran for this day: 26.27 KM