28 April 2012

Race Report: Nat Geo Run 2012

Last Sunday Bong and I ran the Nat Geo Run 2012. It was my first 21 kilometer run. I woke up at two in the morning and prepared my self a banana and half a cup of coffee. It's all that I eat before a race. Anything more than that and my tummy feels fugly.

I am thankful to Noelle of Kikayrunner.com for sponsoring this race. She was patient with my E-mails. She even gave me tips on how to train for my first 21k.

At 4 a.m., we arrived at BGC and started doing some warm ups, knee highs, butt kicks, loosening up those tight muscles. I also did my last minute bathroom breaks.

Bong and I waited at the middle of the pack of the starting line for the gun start. While there, I noticed that were so many foreigners. The front line was like a delegation from the United Nations. It was estimated that eight thousand (8,000) people showed up for the race. There were some African runners too, but I really can't see them because it was dark. I was interested to find out sana if I can recognize them from previous races. It has been said that Kenyan runners are making a business out of the running scene here in the Philippines.

With cameras in front of the starting line, it seemed like a photo shoot for United Colors of Benetton. "How sosyal naman this race, international 'tol." - I told my running mate Bong. I was expecting that NatGeoRun 2012 (with its super mahal na registration fee 1300Php) would at the very least be at par with international standards.

At gun start, everyone was running so fast. My friend Bong was pacing me. He's the faster runner between the two of us. He was very patient with me. He didn’t have to, but he waited for me in times I had to recover from running.

We ran steady for thirty (30) minutes without water breaks, and how can there be water breaks when there were very few water stations? I told Bong, "Bro galit ata organizers sa water stations eh. Ang konti at ang lalayo ng water stations." You can count the water stations with your fingers.

At fifth kilometer, I was thirsty and really felt the need for a water break. I had Gatorade in my kidney bottles but I wanted to reserve it for the latter part of the race. But wait! Is it really the fifth kilometer or tenth? No one really knows because through out the whole race, there were no kilometer markers! All the race had was arrows, directions, telling runners where to turn. The lack of distance markers made it hard for runners to pace and plan their run.

It was supposed to be Earth Day, but there were almost very few efforts to promote how to conserve mother earth. The giant screen before the race started merely featured NatGeo program ads, but barely any information about Earth Day. The streets were a mess with water bottles and paper cups, too. A lot of runners just indiscriminately threw their paper cups on the road. A lot of runners seem to have forgotten that it was Mother Earth's birthday and the race was an environmental advocacy. Part of the blame goes to the organizers, too. Very few trash bins were provided.

Somewhere in the race, (No distance markers, argh.) someone shouted, "Last 3k!" I felt that I still had the energy to push  my speed to the max. My NatGeo jersey was drenched in sweat and was sticking to my body. Since it was really slowing me down, I took off my shirt off and tucked it behind me.

Finally, the finish line. I saw a stranger walking five hundred meters away from the finish line. I told him, "Kuya, konti nalang, kaya natin to." He told me, "Oo nga bro. Kaya natin ito!" Then he took a walk break, while I maintained my steady pace. 10 seconds after, he sprinted towards the finish line surpassing me. Talk about giving someone a boost! :)

At the finish line, I saw Avril taking my photo. I wanted to hug her. She was so supportive. She's all I wanted to see after the race. Natanggal pagod ko.

A guy in a cap stopped me and gave me a finisher's medal. I didn't expect that there was a medal. They didn't announce they medals will be given to the finishers. It was my first medal ever. Sweet victory. A new mile stone in my running career.

I felt happy running my first 21k. For some people, there are more important things to do than just running. I don't blame them, I mean, whatever floats their boat, I am not running for them. Instead, I am running because I believe running makes a better person out of me. It's for my Boo. It's for my friends. It's for that 2013 one sweet day. It's for those who believe in me. It's for the things I believe is right. It's for God, my offering, my gratitude.

Pre-race rituals, visualizations, inspirations.

Bong, my running mate, and yours truly.

I heard someone shout, "Last 3k!" and I ran like hell.

Bling bling with Avril my love.

Finishing strong.
Lastly, I just want to share a quote from Ron Clarke
“I still cannot define precisely my joy in running… Who can define happiness? To some, happiness is a warm puppy or a glass of cold beer.  To me, happiness is running in the hills with my mates around me.”
Have a great day everyone!

Special thanks:
Avril, you are my soulmate.
Noelle of Kikayrunner.com for sponsoring my registration :)
Bong Cendana my running mate
Glenn and Sigue Correr Runners for the photos

06 April 2012

Iron Board Surfing and On Fasting

Iron board surfing ROCKS! I can’t wait to rush some splash into the waters with my SUPER COOL THERMOCafé! It’s going to be a great summer!
Just wanna share a photo we did for a Thermos Promo. Wala lang, pang kulet lang. Hehe. And because our kabayo ng plantsa was wet, our uniforms were gusot for a day. Haha. I hope Thermos recognizes my effort for this pic. Ikaw nga magpapicture ng topless?! *wink :)

Behind the scenes:

Wakeboarding in the garage, anyone? :D
On Fasting

I am eating my last full meal before I go into fasting and abstinence tomorrow. You see before Jesus died on the cross, he struggled. I guess I want to share His sacrifices in some way, too. It's a way of going back to basics. Some say there are benefits you can get from fasting --
Due to the lack of incoming energy, the body must turn to its own resources, a function called autolysis. (2) Autolysis is the breaking down of fat stores in the body in order to produce energy. The liver is in charge of converting the fats into a chemical called a ketone body, "the metabolic substances acetoacetic acid and beta-hydroxybutyric acid" (3), and then distributing these bodies throughout the body via the blood stream. "When this fat utilization occurs, free fatty acids are released into the blood stream and are used by the liver for energy." (3)The less one eats, the more the body turns to these stored fats and creates these ketone bodies, the accumulation of which is referred to as ketosis. (4) Detoxification is the foremost argument presented by advocates of fasting. "Detoxification is a normal body process of eliminating or neutralizing toxins through the colon, liver, kidneys, lungs, lymph glands, and skin. (http://serendip.brynmawr.edu/exchange/node/1834)
I am not sure whether this article has a scientific basis or not. But it seems people who tried fasting concur about its benefits.

I also want to try Visita Iglesia. I haven't tried it. After grueling weeks of studying and activities, I think it is time to devote one day for spirituality naman. I will tell you how my fasting experience on Sunday. Tomorrow I'll also refrain form the usual comforts muna, like coffee, sweets, internet, etc.

May you have a meaningful Holy Week guys. God bless.

05 April 2012

Partying then Running

Videoke party the night after our midterms. (2:00am) With Helene, Karen, Avril, Abby, Jalyn, Kaylee, Bong, and me (taking the picture)

At 3:30 a.m - went home to sleep.

Then at 5:30 Avril, Bong, and I went straight ahead to the CCP grounds to run the Yakult 10 Mile Race.

It's my first 10 Miler. So to speak it's my best time at 16k :p

I don't recommend partying the night before a big race. :)

Thank You:
Angelica, for inviting me to the Yakult Run
Francis and Karen for the pics.