Various local press releases describe running as the ‘new badminton’, which might seem a rather empty accolade, given that our endurance sport had seen its first heydays during the early 80s, long before the popularity of badminton. On balance, it’s fair comment.
At present, the current trend of running is at its peak. With two to three scheduled races on a given Sunday, i’m stumped on which race to join. On selecting my races, it still all boils down to who the race organizers/directors are, if the registration fees are reasonable (very rare these days), or if my running group is going to join the race. Often times, i’m swayed by joining if my group of friends are also joining–all for the camaraderie and support.
One race that stood out for me last year was the Globe Run For Home 2009, where i ran the 21k in 2:25. It was one of the most organized races, water and sports drinks were plentiful, portalets were laid out on parts of the route and my entry fee was practically free as the corresponding amount was converted into a text load on my Globe pre-paid account.
If my memory serves me right, it was also the first time that the “championchips” timing chips were introduced to track your moves and performance in different areas of the course and mainly to give an accurate finish time. Using these data, a performance analysis was also made available, giving a detailed assessment of each runner’s performance, his/her ranking vs. the total field of runners, your average speed during the race and split times at a particular point in the course.
This year’s edition of the race is going to be more visible in this hi-tech world. To make the results more timely, the timing chips that tracks your position along the course is now tied-up to your Facebook account and your finish time will automatically be posted in your FB account once you cross the finish line. Moreover, if your family and friends can’t be at the race venue to watch you live, they can watch a live streaming feed of the finish line by logging on to http://www.globe.com.ph/run. Pretty cool, huh?
If you have a Facebook account, just go to Globe’s Facebook account (Globe Ayala Land Run For Home) and click on “Go To Application” and install the Run For Home application on to your Facebook account. On race day, the timing chips will send newsfeed updates and race results to your profile.
It was a blast hearing all these innovations during their Blogger’s Night at the Shanghai Bistro at the Paseo Center in Makati last Tuesday. No less than 15 running bloggers were present to witness the presentation and it was great fun we had that night!