“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence then, is not an act, but a habit” (Aristotle/Will Durant)
I just woke up after 16 hours of sleep coming from yesterday’s BDM 160k epic finale at Mariveles, Bataan. Witnessing the race unfold before my eyes gave me a perspective on what people are capable of doing and i’m still in awe at the guts and steadfastness of these ultra warriors, to finish the race and get that silver buckle whatever it takes.
I was originally going to run the Rainbow 10k Race Sunday morning and proceed to a friend’s birthday run afterwards but when Chito Carreon, a 160 BDM graduate asked me to help him marshal the 83km checkpoint in Lubao, Pampanga, i couldn’t say no. Chito and i brought our supplies and got some more extras just in case runners would ask for anything that would aid them in their run…and many without support and those who were abandoned, did. Also it was an opportunity for me to cheer on the Heartbreakers Team where two of our runners, KB and Meljohn would be attempting to finish their first 160k.
We expected runners to arrive at the 83km mark at about 1:30pm so we took our lunch first before 12:00 noon at Razon’s in Lubao where we partook Sisig, Lechon Kawali, Boneless Bangus (with thorns still intact) and some bananas which we brought for dessert. We were already stationed at the Caltex station at about 12:30 when Gen Jovie arrived to check on our station. As predicted, the first runner, Juny Rex Carreon (no relation to Chito) arrived at 1:38pm and the excitement began. I had my Blackberry with me and was able to update the arrival of runners in my facebook account in real time.
It took about an hour and fifteen minutes for the second runner to check-in and one by one, runners began to arrive as we recorded their names and time of arrival. They all seem to look strong, a little spent but otherwise very determined as the look on their faces showed much determination while some didn’t lose their sense of humor.
All runners were accounted for except for one foreign female runner whom we seem to have lost in our radar. We were told later that she has DNF’d.
Chito and i were both set to leave for Manila that night after submitting our report but one runner, Paolo Osmena had asked Chito at the checkpoint mark to pace him afterwards from the 102km point on wards when his original pacer backed out at the last minute. So, we were forced to abandon our plans of going home. Chito was to pace and i was to be one of their supports from KM102 up to the finish.
I have already voiced-out my irritation about support groups just giving cursory support to runners they have adopted and i’m not going to wallow over it again. These runners are mostly without a group and might not be able to afford in providing essentials of their own. A little patience and consideration should be offered to these runners specially during the last part of the race when help is mostly needed.
I am posting some of the pictures i took at the 83rd km mark and some at the finish line. Please bear with me if i did not publish your names correctly.
Again, i want to congratulate all road warriors who tackled the whole 160km distance!
And to explain what Will Durant quoted above: What it means is simply this: We ARE that which we do. Our actions define who we are. If we want to be excellent at something then we must do that thing repeatedly until we excel at it (JP Ryst).
And excel is what these BDMer’s just did!
Here are the other runners whose pictures were taken at the 83km mark at random:
At the finish line: