Race Recap: Run United 1 Half-Marathon 2013

Not since the Condura Skyway Marathon have i seen such a big crowd of runners at last Sunday’s Run United-1 21k race at the Mall Of Asia grounds. I was amazed at the throng of mostly young runners who i figured have leveled-up in distance, those who have embraced the challenge of tackling the half-marathon for the first time in their pursuit of doing the full which Run United will be having near the end of the year.

We were sent off in two waves and i happen to be among those in the first but after just about 1.5kms the fast runners among the second wave started to pass us and the merging of both waves, numbering to about 5,000 were evident near Roxas Blvd. and the scene along Buendia Avenue was full packed!

I always take a light pre-race breakfast to provide me some fuel during long races but this particular morning has to be one of my most annoying ones after taking a large moon cake just minutes before the race with just  sips of energy drinks i had with me.  The result, indigestion or dyspepsia which i had to deal with for most of the first half of the race! I couldn’t burp or pass air so i had to contend in slowing down to ease the tightness in my chest.

Taking water didn’t help much on the indigestion but a half-banana portion seem to absorb some of the food stuck on my air waves. Whatever help that brought me, i knew i wasn’t going to achieve a good race time that i had hoped for.

Things eased up a bit when i reached back at Seaside Blvd, about the 10km mark on the way to the south side of Macapagal Avenue. I finally got into a groove of sorts running with old time friends like Jinoe Gavan and Jen Kun who both seem to be taking their time. Now at Macapagal Avanue towards Airport Road, it was a bit of smooth sailing and from then on, i was just pushing it further and only breaking to a slow jog whenever i reach a water station.

With Jay Nacino, left

At the last turn-around point, i was finally joined by Jay Nacino, an ultra-marathoner and now an active triathlete whom i talked animatedly about bikes and triathlons. He was just doing the 10k as a training run and he seem to be just gliding his way through while i was struggling to keep up with his pace and it seem to worked for me getting those kilometers after kilometers done. His stories and company seem to rev-up the little steam that i had left.

The last straight to the finish, a stretch of about 800 meters was so long that you seem to be running it endlessly but i was dead set in getting it there, bumping with other runners also finishing their respective distances. For the last 100 meters, i picked up the pace and veered towards the left lane which was the finish side of the half-marathon runners. Whatever energy i had left, i gave it all out to compensate for the lost time during the start.

Trying to keep up that smile during the last few hundred meters of the race

As expected, i didn’t PR but considering what i had to go through during the first half of the race, i was elated just to be able to finish strong. Finished it in 2:38 and still felt some energy left. I high-fived Jay who was just on the other side of the finish and seem to be all relaxed like he was a few kilometers earlier.

I have ran this route several times in the past and although the sections along Buendia Avenue between Roxas Blvd and Taft Avenue were a bit dark and crowded, the marshals did a fine job in controlling the early traffic as cones were properly deployed along the route.

Over-all the race organization was tops, there were adequate drinking stations, drink-all-you-can Gatorade, courteous marshals and a vibe incomparable with other road races.

An A-1 race!

Thanks to the Running Photographers for some of the photos!

(Check out the race results here):  http://www.unilabactivehealth.com/rununited/results.html

A rock concert after the race

Breakfast with Team mates after the run

Race Results: Race For The Orphans

Rundezvous Events, Inc, organizers of the Race For The Orphans would like to thank and congratulate all runners who joined this morning’s  run at Camp Aguinaldo! We hope you all enjoyed yourselves and wished you achieved a Personal Best despite our shortcomings and simple staging of this race.

Some found the course a little bit challenging so we know how hard it must have been for runners, specially those running the route for the first time in tackling those gentle rolling hills.

We were blessed with a very cooperative weather this morning so we hope nobody got dehydrated and gave everybody a chance to savor the scenery. We really are so grateful to all our sponsors who have made this race possible, to the various running clubs who either ran the race or supported it by being volunteers… our heartfelt thanks!

The UNOFFICIAL race results are now available at www.runningmate.ph

All race time inquiries should be addressed to racetime@runningmate.ph so they can take up your concerns immediately.

We hope to see you again in Rundezvous Events’ future race, coming soon!

QCIM3: Getting One Before The Year End!

I’m sitting here tired and exhausted, trying not to over-indulge on yesterday’s marathon effort at the QCIM3. Because running this distance is never easy and doing it under-trained can pose a lot of problems. But somehow, i got through it all with perseverance, determination and with two very sore heels and a king-size blister!

With some friends before the race (thanks to Vans for the photo)

As i listen to some Andrew Hill music with friend June, celebrating my finish between sips of Fundador (ok, it’s Emperador lights, actually) i’m feeling the knots in my muscle and the gratification that i finished another big one, my first marathon for 2011, after months of injury… not sure if i can ever run one again.

I was supposed to be running this marathon as a long, training run, a prelude to what i had been aiming for, the Condura Marathon in early February. I wasn’t following any training schedule really, and treated Sunday races as my long runs with the Run United3 32k being my longest which was done about 4 weeks prior. After that, it was like tapering all the way with no other significant long runs after that. Well, the Nathan Ridge 21k run was a long walk-run affair so that doesn’t count.

The QCIM race went well, felt strong during the first 24k until cramps hit me on the 25th kilometer and had to run-walk until i got my rhythm back at 28k. I finished the race in 5:27:11 (chip time).

Crossing the finish line (Thanks to Les for the photo)

I’m already looking forward to the next one, maybe Cebu or Subic, can’t say if i’m doing the full or maybe just the half-marathon but we’ll see.

To those who ran QCIM3, congratulations to you all! You can view the results here: http://www.strider.ph.