Event: Run United 1
Venue: SM Mall of Asia
Date: March 16, 2014
More than 12,000 runners showed up at SM Mall of Asia yesterday for one of the most anticipated races in the country, Run United 1. A whopping 5,000 21km runners joined the event, a testament to runners being more competitive and advanced in their sport.
Early on, during registration, it was news in the running community that slots, particularly for the 21km, had filled in a matter of days. These slots were in high demand as Run United 1 is the first of a trilogy of races where runners aim to complete their triple medal.
The runners who were lucky enough to bag slots all showed up on race day in their Run United sweat activated singlets and visors. After a few kilometers of sweating during the run, the word “Citius” which means “Faster” in Latin magically appeared at the back of the shirt.
Unilab Active Health truly lived up to its own mantra: “Exceed Yourself.” The race, organized by Run Rio, was once again another perfectly orchestrated event from start to finish. Perhaps the only element that I hope can be improved on is the high congestion on the road, particularly for the 10k distance, but, then again, due to its sheer size, I think the crowd is almost inevitable. Beyond that, the race was fantastic. They even had Parokya ni Edgar at the post race village to entertain the runners. According to Lester Castillo of ULAH, ULAH aims “to provide quality races for progressive athletes who wish to exceed themselves by establishing new PRs, doing higher distances, or having a strong finish.” Looks like they’re doing just that!
Congratulations to Unilab Active Health and Run Rio for another successful event!
LAST DAY OF RECOVERY
After a marathon, my body needs exactly 3 weeks to recover. It may not be the same for you, but, for me, it can’t be any less or more. It is always exactly 3 weeks when I feel like my body has gotten enough rest, my tight muscles have loosened up, and I can finally push my body again to run fast or long.
Last week, I decided to withdraw from Tri United 1 because I felt like I would do my body harm by pushing it to do a triathlon when it was asking for rest and lots of massage. My quads were so tight (as hard as plywood!) that it was causing some discomfort on my left knee.
Yesterday, on the third week after Tokyo Marathon and the day of Run United 1, I felt like I was fully recovered. Ton, Lit, and I signed up for 10k. I planned on running this very easy to test if, indeed, I was right.
– Ton, Lit and I a few seconds after gun start –
When the gun went off, Ton and I were with other triathlete friends, Kesha, Trina, Glenn and Yvonne. As we ran easy along with the crowd of 10k runners, we realized Lit had taken off way ahead of us. We laughed that he had decided to suddenly be competitive again. Before we knew it, Kesha had gone ahead as well and Glenn and Yvonne had disappeared in the crowd. So, it was Ton, Trina, and I who ran together for the rest of the race.
The course is not unfamiliar to us. We’ve run the 21k distance to Run United so often that we can almost run this with our eyes closed. (Okay, maybe just one eye closed!) I won’t lie to you. On this day, I was so glad that we were running only 10k. We ran it slow and easy.
At Km 2, it was quite a surprise for me to hear so many runners around me panting. I could hear the usual barking sound that male runners make when they’re dying midway through the run “Huh! Huh!” How does one tire at only 2 km? Only one answer: If you didn’t train for it! Silently, I made a mental note that we really must find a way to remind beginners to TRAIN for a race before they register for it. 10k, or even a 5k, is no joke for someone who hasn’t run a day in their life!
Soon enough, we hit the turnaround at around 4.5km. What?! So early in the race! We were so used to making a turnaround much farther out in the 21k course that when we turned around so early I almost wanted to scream out in joy.
The last 2k made me a bit nervous. During the past few weeks of running, I would feel the knee pain at the 8th kilometer. I was crossing my fingers and toes that, this time, with rest and some therapy at Peak Form, my knee was completely fine.
As we neared the finish, the crowd got bigger with other race distances merging as we re-entered SM Mall of Asia. This was no problem for me as I enjoyed the easy pace. Lit waved to Ton and I as he waited for us on the other side of the road having finished earlier.
Trina had gone ahead at the last kilometer, so Ton and I ran with ease, all smiles, and, for me, absolutely no pain, baby! It was a great way to run my last day of recovery and my first day of getting back into training mode.
– Ton and I with the birthday boy, Coach Rio, who celebrated his birthday yesterday –
– Lotsa finishers at the post race area! –
– with Trina, Kesha, Papoo, Gilbert, Mark, Eric, Lit, Ton, and Mark –