Didn’t have enough preparation for the half marathon race. On top of that the weather the previous week didn’t cooperate. It rained when it was time to have a practice run. But that didn’t deter me at all.
Friday night, I had to meet Queenie to get my road ID but ended up in a Milo Support Group Meeting by takbo.ph runners. Though I didn’t know most of them, they’re a good bunch of people to be with. Had to leave early though since Friday’s the best time to get a good sleep before a race.
IT’S RACE TIME!
Woke up as scheduled and left the house in high spirits. Arrived at the venue with enough time to deposit stuff at the baggage area and do warmup exercises. As I was on my way to the baggage area, I saw Doc Lyndon. After exchanging pleasantries, off I went to the baggage area then jogged the remaining distance going to the starting line.
Inside the holding area, saw some takbo.ph runners. Team Logan (Craig and family), Run Unlimited and his wife Cristy. Bro J was also there.
Running in this race was a new experience for me since it was like beating my 10k PR two years ago and going beyond the 16k Yakult route. The other major challenge was going up and down two flyovers once again. “I wonder how how the 42k runners are doing by this time?” Just a thought of mine while waiting for the gun start.
Last minute instruction was announced by the race organizer. One thing that registered in my mind was the cut-off time for 21k–two hours and a half. “Can I beat that?,” I said to myself. Then, the gun was fired right on time.
As I’ve mentioned before, I rarely talk during a race. I do acknowledge a fellow runner by just raising my hand. Running past Baclaran area, one of the lady runners asked me why I was not in the 42k. I tried to answer her politely (even out of breath that time) that I was not ready to run that distance. To discourage further discussion while running, I had to slow down a bit and allowed her to run past me. Effective!
After the Heritage EDSA flyover, saw the 10k runners. Ahead of me was a familiar runner and I just said “hi”. I was caught of guard when from a group, a 10k runner tried to talk to me. “Oh no, not again!,” I said to myself. I had to shift gear (just like a car) and increased my speed (literally speaking). Hahaha! That runner was a classmate of mine during the Mizuno Running Clinic. Sorry classmate. Let’s chat when I’m not doing a race pace, please.
On my way to the second turn around point along Buendia, I saw Lonerunner doing his practice run. After a few minutes, a Milo car following a fast runner with a board on top of it showing race time 2:16, and with seconds ticking. I was pretty much below my target time.
Then I saw them. The bubbly takbo.ph support group who excitedly asked me what I want. I did ask for a bottle of water. Hearing them cheering was enough encouragement to run. Thank you takbo.ph support volunteers. You know who you are.
On my way back after the last turn around point, I saw them (takbo.ph) volunteers cheering, giving me so many stuff. Gene (Barracuda Running) I will never forget your stance! What spirit! What energy!
This photo was taken by Marvs as I was on my way to the Finish Line which was approximately 800 meters away. But that few distance seemed to be an eternity of running. One thing I couldn’t forget was Marving shouting at me, “serious!” Which means, I was not smiling when this one was taken. Thank you Marvs. I was dead serious to beat my Condura PR and the Milo cut-off time, you see. Reaching the finish line was a mixture of feelings–tired but happy. I made it! I beat my Condura by three minutes. Made it within the cut-off time! Run Unlimited and his wife Cristy were there to congratulate me. Thanks to both of you.
Amazing day! It didn’t rain!
It was the first time to have a 21k event included in a Milo Metro Manila eliminations. Kudos to the race organizer! A pretty much improved race organizing! I take my hats off to the leadership of Mr. Biscocho and the Milo team.
(Photos Courtesy of Marvs, Rachel, and Bro J)