Monday, December 26, 2011

News: Two Year- End Runs!


Where: GHQ Grandstand, Camp Aguinaldo, Cubao, Quezon City
4 and 3/4 loops of the 7K-loop inside Camp Aguinaldo
Start & Finish: In front of the GHQ Grandstand

When: Dec 30, 2011 (Rizal Day)
Assembly Time: 5:00 AM
Gun Start: 5:30 AM

Distance: 32km

How Much: P 850.00

Registration: ARC Manila
On Site at least an hour before gun start

Additional Details: Finisher will receive Finisher's T-Shirt, Medallion/ Coin, Finisher's Certificate
No Cut-off Time


Where: Venice Piazza, Mc Kinley Hill, Taguig

When: Dec 31, 2011
Assembly Time: 5:30 AM
Gun Start: 6:00 AM

Distance: 5km

How Much: P 150.00

Registration: ROX, A Runner's Circle

Additional Details: A run for Typhoon Sendong Victims (proceeds will be sent here). Runners will receive a race bib for their donations.

I'm definitely joining at least one of these races. Still thinking if I can join both...

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

I've Got Mail!

And just when I'm getting discouraged from running too! Perfect timing to motivate myself (have to make multiple copies and place them all over the house... hehe).

It's time to re-ignite the flame and understand (again) why I am doing all these speed works, tempo and long, easy runs.

My first marathon for 2012 and exactly two years since I did my last one.

Hope to finish it strong and injury- free (fingers crossed)!

A good Christmas gift... :)

Friday, December 16, 2011

News: Go Natural Run - Jan 15, 2012


Start the year 2012 right with Runrio’s Go Natural on January 15, 2012 at the Bonifacio Global City. Run for the education about Diabetes at an early age.

Proceeds from the event will be donated to ABS CBN’s Ako ang Simula.

Join Go Natural 2012 and run for a diabetes free future.

Live healthy, Go Natural.




3K – PHP 350
5K – PHP 550
10K – PHP 650
21K – PHp 800

- Includes Bib with Timing Tag and Singlet (21K + Finisher’s Shirt)

First 1,000 early bird registrants get a special Go Natural Baller ID. Special surprises await those who wear the Baller ID during the run.

- Register 4 + 1 race kit for free for any category (in-store only)

Sample Singlet (it comes in 4 different colors for you to choose from).

No finisher medals for 21km runners but they do have a nice shirt design for 21km finishers.

An additional donation of P150 on top of the registration fee in support of early child diabetes education gets a freebie T-Shirt (pickup on race day).


November 28, 2011 to January 8, 2012 (12:00 nn – 8:00 pm)
- Toby’s – Shangri-La Mall and SM MOA
- Planet Sports – Trinoma and Glorietta 3
- Riovana – Bonifacio High Street
- Athlete’s Foot – Robinson’s Galleria and Alabang Town Center

To register online visit

For More Information visit:

Official Website ->
RunRio Website ->

Go Natural is brought to you by Ampalaya Plus, Amapalaya Plus Delite Herbal Tea, Slenda, Enduranz, Renalin, Resorts World, Powerade and Viva Mineralized Water.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Milo Finals 21km - RFB Vs Cut Off Time

Ahhh… the prestigious Milo Race! Anyone who has been joining the road races in the Philippines for the past 1-3 years should join this one as well, regardless of the race category (5km, 10km, 21km, or 42km) as this is one (if not THE) oldest road race in the country.

On a personal level, I have been running Milo for some time now (but never the full 42.2km marathon distance). For 2010, I didn't join any of the Elimination Rounds or that of the Finals as I had grown tired of it (having joined the race twice in 2009 and twice in 2008).

But 2011 made me excited again to join the Milo Races. So what’s the difference this time around?

Well, first of all, the race organizer is different. For this year (and for succeeding years), the races were handled by RunRio.Inc. In previous Milo events, there were problems with hydrations, too many runners and not having sufficient marshals. Parking was also a problem as there weren’t enough parking slots near the Starting Line, which was across Rizal Park.

All of the above concerns were addressed by RunRio.Inc and the starting line was moved to Mall of Asia Grounds (which had ample parking spaces).

Secondly (and a big come on for me) are the very nice finisher medals that they will be giving out (for the first time) to 21km finishers, provided said finishers make it before the cut off time. So what was the finish time? 2:30!

That was completely unachievable for me back in July when they had the Manila Eliminations leg as I never ran a 2:30 half marathon for 2011. My time for said distance ranged from 2:45 to nearly 3 hours. So goodbye finisher medals and goodbye Milo race (I ended up joining a 21km race in UP at the same time as Milo and getting a finisher medal there).

But I was also irked upon finding out that there were some leniency in the cut off time for 42km and 21km Milo finishers and people who exceeded the cut off times were also awarded with the finisher medals. (If I only knew about this, I would have joined this race too).

So I vowed to join the Milo Finals leg for a shot at the finisher medal. Having heard about the leniency back in July, I wasn’t too worried if I didn’t make it to the cut off time this time around. But at the back of my mind, that was still my target goal just to say I deserved the medal and not because of the organizer’s sympathy that I got it.

So on December 11, 2011, Per and I drove to Mall of Asia grounds for our own individual races (Per joined the 5km race). My race started at 5:00am while Per’s race started at 5:30am. Right there, I noticed how organized everything was:

1) The 5km runners had five different waves to separate the thousands of runners that day

2) Separate starting areas for 5km and 10km, 21km runners

3) Route for 21km runners didn’t mix with the 5km runners

I got there just in time (but couldn’t do any stretches anymore) and ran at the back end of 21km runners. It was my farthest distance for three weeks so didn’t know how I would do. Plus the fact that back and shoulders pain along with PFs came back and none of those were good news for me.

The first few kilometers were good for me (although the legs were a bit tight) but by 8km mark, I was feeling the back pain and had to put some walking in my running to stretch my shoulders and back. Pretty soon, my right foot was getting some pain too and I was using the water stations as an excuse to walk some more. I was drinking and stopping at almost every water stations and the weather wasn’t that hot!

I had hoped for a new PR for 2011 but with the various body pains I was experiencing, I tried for my next goal, which was a sub-2:30 finish time. But even that was getting hard to do.

I kept calculating and re-calculating whether I would make the race’s cut off time or not. At first it was quite achievable. Then as I got slower, the margin got tighter and I had to lessen my walk breaks and run some more. I tried running faster but it was hurting me more.

By the 19km mark, I had less than 14 minutes to go before reaching the cut off time. And this wasn’t just a flat 21km race. It was a 21.1km race (and sometimes the distance is a little bit more) so I had to go faster.

It was time to dig deep!!

At the final turn, I had about 500 – 700 meters to go and saw the finish line ahead. The clock was ticking down. Will I make it in time?

Time to dig deeper!!

I also saw Per standing in the middle of the road in her Pink Adidas KOTR singlet cheering for me. She also turned around to look at the finisher clock, wondering whether I could make it or not.

I was so near but I wasn’t sure how close I was. The battle was just between me and the clock.


And then it was over!

I heard the people cheering and a finisher medal was placed on my head. I walked again to get my loot bag and to meet with Per.

I made it by 8 seconds! It was like winning a race… and it felt great!

To God Be the Glory!

Note: I found out later that my 20 to 21km was at 6:33 pace and the final 270 meters to the finish line was at 4:33 pace. Nothing like fear and panic to make a guy run faster!

The last stretch and I was looking at my Garmin to make my final calculations!

SPRINT MODE!! - notice the "run-it-all-out" face

Phew! Barely made it!!
Happy it's over!

The couple is running again!
What a loot bag! Thanks Milo!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Boracay 5km Race

The last time I was in Boracay, I "bandit" joined a 2km race as it was opened solely for women only. (Click this LINK for more info on said race).

Luckily on my next visit to Boracay I was able to find a fun run happening the next day. This was for a 3km and 5km fun run starting from Casa Pilar at Station 3 and it served as the Boracay leg for the "Million Volunteer Run" by Philippine Red Cross. (they had a Manila leg too at SM Mall of Asia Grounds).

This was a perfect race for me as I needed to do 5km that day (and left my Garmin in Manila). I tried to convince Per to join the 3km race but she was too lazy to run on our vacation. (Good thing she didn't say yes or else I have a lot to answer for in trying to register her for a Kiddie race category!)

By 5:50 am on December 4th, 2011, I was at the race site and registered for that race. Due to lack of time, I didn't bother to fill up the registration form and just paid for it in order to get my race bib and Red Cross Volunteer shirt.

The race was supposed to start at 6:00 am but we had to wait until the helicopter would come and fly over us. Yes, a HELICOPTER!

The Starting Line at Station 3.

Red Cross Ambulance at the beach

The kids started their 3km race first...

.. followed by the province's local tribe...

... and concluding with our 5km race

For both race categories, it was a simple straight run along the beach shore, followed by a U Turn at half way point to run back to the starting line. For the 5km race, the U Turn point was at White House Resort on Station 1 (and right where the Life Guard post was).

I planned to race this as it was just 5km but I underestimated how difficult it was to run on the dry sand as my feet kept sinking in them (and they were DEEP)! By 500 meters, I was panting hard, and BOTH my calves were hurting. I was also feeling pain in my heels at 1km point. The incline of the terrain wasn't helping too.

Instead of staying on the difficult beach, I went instead with the other runners on the rough sidewalks and tried to regain some lost time there. I overtook some runners but clearly I wasn't fully recovered yet from what happened earlier and I took some quick walk breaks to stretch out my legs too.

Pretty soon the sidewalks ended at Station 2 and I was forced to go back to the beach area for the U turn point some 800 meters away. The organizers positioned the water station there and I took a quick sip before running back on the beach.

My halfway mark was at 17 minutes! Wow, that's slow.

This time, instead of running on the dry sand or on the sidewalk, I ran instead by the shoreline. The sands were wet making them compact and good to run on. The challenge was not getting my feet wet but pretty soon I realized it was unavoidable and just ran on sand and on water. And I ran faster.

But the calves pain were still there and I had to walk again near the finish line before running off again to finish it.

My finish time was at 31:51, not a personal best but since this was my first 5km for the year, it's a 2011 PR Time.

After the race, there were free foot massages given my Mandala Spa therapists. Yes, THE MANDALA SPA! Not willing to let this go, I waited patiently for my turn here.

Aaahhh, soothing (and a little painful) foot massage!

My poor shoes post-race!

Back to R&R mode!!