And it wasn’t because my alarm didn’t go off or I got lost going to QC Memorial Circle. On the contrary, I was there by 4:30am, 30 minutes ahead of the 21km race. But I had to do a long run for that day. My target distance was at 29km and rather do the remaining 8km after the Half Marathon race when the sun is already out, I decided to do some mileage early in the morning so can finish early too. Unfortunately, I made the wrong guess on the distance and by the time I arrived at the starting line, the 21km race had started some 5 minutes earlier.
Just like last week’s race, I was late again but grateful that similar to last week’s race, this race used a chip timer to show your real time aside from your gun time. I wanted to chase the other runners but decided that that wasn’t a wise thing to do and took this as a blessing in disguise to run at a constant pace. Had I started on time with the other runners, I would most likely have gone a lot faster as will be drawn with the speed of the fast people.
It was scary to be running by myself as I wasn’t familiar in this area and didn’t know the right turns. Good thing, there were adequate marshals to guide me on the course and pretty soon I was able to see a few runners ahead of me. There were also some runners who came in late so it wasn’t that lonely running in this race.
My pace was at a constant 7:20 minutes/km and course took me to the familiar roads of UP (near Sunken Garden) and to the wide roads of Commonwealth Avenue, where the 21km runners were joined by the 10km runners. It was great running on wide streets with no moving vehicles in sight. There were only a handful of Half Marathoners but I didn’t mind. The number of 10km runners more than made up for it. There were ample water stations on the course and the weather was just right. The 10km runners made the U-turn at one point while I had to continue running to Batasan Road for the turning point. At the 11km mark, I heard a patrol car coming by and with his emergency lights blaring. I thought that something went wrong (did a runner collapse mid-way?) only to see that it was the Kenyans coming back already! Wow, that gave me goose bumps to be on the same road as these speedy runners. They went past me (obviously) and I continued my run at a steady pace. I learned later on that they won the marathon at a time of 2:30++. Very impressive!
The route back took a detour through a part of Trinoma Mall and it was here I realized I still have a lot of energy and quickened my pace. My pace went down to 6:35 minutes/km. At the finish line, my average went down to 7:01 minutes/km for a total time of 2:29:21 with a distance of 21.27km. I reached my target of 7 minutes/km and with a negative split at the last 5km. Awesome!
Not much freebies after the race. The Nike shirts that were supposed to be given out did not arrive but I didn’t mind as I got a big finisher medal at the finish line. Per, after finishing her 10km race, got a black Nike Human race bag.
I then went for another 4km to attain my target mileage for the day and we then left early to go to SM Megamall (after showering and a change of clothes of course) to get our Adidas Race kits at the exhibit area. We were there early so no lines yet and got free food here via KFC (perfect as haven’t had breakfast yet).
Some pain on my shoulders (did I run too stiffly?) and heels (do my shoes lack support) but quite happy with my overall performance in today’s run. Ran a total of 29km for a time of 3 hours 28 minutes++. It’s tapering time soon! Can’t wait!
Thanks again to my coach Alvin for teaching me the principle of negative split performance and to Per for patiently waiting for me to finish my long run.
See you in the Adidas race next Sunday!
Half marathon Finisher! Yehey!