I can say that last Sunday’s Chasing the Sun: The Neutrogena Run was another showcase of Finishline’s great race organization as they did a good job in plotting a new route for the 15k without passing through the Kalayaan Fly-over this time, plenty of field marshals in key strategic areas and the water and sports drinks were finally cold!
Contrary to the run’s theme, Chasing the Sun, i supposed it would be more apt to say, “The Sun Chased Us!” as the heat became unbearable specially during the last stages of the run! It was hot and humid that morning as it was for the past several weeks. I was already sweating profusely when i did my short customary warm-up jog as my singlet was almost drenched in sweat!
I was pleasantly surprised when some lady marshals were pressing-out tubes of sunblock cream and giving it to the 15k runners before the start of the 15k race, a first, as we liberally applied it to our arms, face and legs. But then, no amount of sunblock could beat the glaring heat of the sun as the humidity got the better of us during the run.
I felt completely out of sync running the first few kilometers as i felt thirsty even before we reached the first water station. The heat was really sapping my energy and i never got my groove going. That said, i was only able to manage a split of 31 mins at 5k and 1:02 mins. at 10k. Even though it was a struggle maintaining my focus and cadence, at least, my pace was consistent, slow but consistent. Normally on good weather, i would have already found my rhythm and breathing easier.
The last 5k, coming out of Bayani Road and back to Lawton Avenue was a struggle as i tried to maintain a pace of 6:00/km. Going down 5th Avenue, i was exhausted and felt like stopping to walk and find a shade in a tree or tall building. Somehow, i found another secondwind and passed-up some runners who were reduced to walking and tried to seize this opportunity as i focused more on my running.
Fifty meters before the finishline, i saw some familiar faces who where cheering us on that stretch as if egging us to sprint the last few meters. I tried to focus my already bleary eyes to one enthusiastic cheerer, i think he was Manong Jovie (Baldrunner). A fine runner, ultra-marathon organizer and now a CHEERER! Unbelievable!:-)
I crossed the finish line in 1:35:36 (Official Chip time 1:35:26) and felt relieved that it was over.
After a continuous five week-ends of racing, i guess it’s time to get a much-needed rest and contemplate to another training phase that should lead to the Camsur Marathon this September. This is much more than chasing the sun or the sea… it’s chasing another dream– and that’s why i run!
Here are some photos of the event: