Bohol Sandugo Panglao Half Marathon Finisher

Just one week after finishing the I Shall Return 50K Ultramarathon in Leyte, I ran the Bohol Sandugo Panglao 21K category during the Bohol International Marathon (BIM) running event as I certainly didn’t plan to race hard another long distance any time soon.  Though I’ve been to Bohol a couple of times many years before, visiting the Hills seemed an elusive activity that I promised myself I’d go there one day.  I registered for BIM mainly for two reasons: to explore and conquer Panglao Islandby running and to see Bohol’s most famous tourist destination, the Chocolate Hills.  Coincidentally, the Borneo International Marathonin Kota Kinabalu was also staged same day as the Bohol International Marathon and both using the same acronym BIM for their respective running event.

My flight went very well.  The skies were overcast with light rains, a welcomed change from the three-day heavy rains in Metro Manila brought by the southwest monsoon or “habagat”.  Since I arrived early, I decided to have breakfast first at a 24-hour fast food chain and waited for the race kit pick-up time before proceeding to Panglao Island.  The only inconvenient thing that happened was getting the race kit took longer than expected, but it was worth the wait as the race kit included a well-designed singlet and race bib.  Not bad for a provincial race. 
 Early Sunday Morning, August 25

The full marathon, which started at midnight, was already in full swing when I arrived at the Panglao Town Plaza.  In fact, some minutes before gun start for the half marathon participants, the emcee announced the first 42K runner to arrive at the finish line who clocked at 2 hours and 35 minutes.  You could feel the excitement as more runners arrived.

The Dauis Panglao Road is just a straight concrete pavement center highway and the turnaround point for the 21K runners was at the 10.5KM marker.  One couldn’t see what was along the road except for a few houses and some buildings for it was still dark when we started running.  The stillness of the early morning was only broken by the energetic drum beats played by a group of musicians riding a vehicle.  The stations provided ample supply of water and energy drinks.   There were also locals who cheered on the runners. On my way back, I noticed that my Garmin Forerunner registered already a half marathon distance yet I was still a few kilometers from the finish line.  My bet the 21K distance was probably a bit over a kilometer and this was confirmed by some runners at the finish line. The BIM route is perfect for those who are aiming for a good personal record or PR.  On the other hand, the cemented pavement can be hard on the knees. 

Congratulations Bohol Runners and Ultra Runners Club and your team of volunteers for staging the event successfully.  Congratulations to all finishers and winners of the event! For race results, click here.

As for me, I finally got to see the Chocolate Hills including the Philippine Tarsier.  I couldn’t ask for more. Super duper thanks to CJ and Thirdy and the rest of the gang for having me in their group tour.  

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