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TBR Dream Marathon 2013 Official Video

Wednesday, 22 May 2013  |  Bullish Insights, Favorite Posts, News + Promos

With just a couple more days to the 3rd month anniversary of our new marathoners from batch 2013 of TBR Dream Marathon, we couldn’t wait to release our little surprise: the official video coverage of TBR Dream Marathon 2013.

Enjoy! In the meantime, we are busy preparing for TBR Dream Marathon 2014 (yes, we start this early!)

Part 4: London Marathon – The Race

Friday, 17 May 2013  |  Favorite Posts, Race Reports

RACE REPORT: Virgin London Marathon 2013

Date: Sunday, 21 April 2013
Gun start: 10:00 AM


“This is it.” I thought. After months of training under the excruciating heat in Manila, here I was with a laundry bag on top of my running clothes to keep me warm from the chilly start. I couldn’t help but smile.

All the runners around me were chatting with nervous excitement. I couldn’t hear the announcer anymore. But, when the announcer asked all 36,000 runners to pause for a minute of silence to honor the victims of the Boston Marathon bombing, everyone fell silent. The bombings at the Boston Marathon, just a week before London Marathon, had made an impact on the world, but it had struck a nerve even more with us runners.

The marathon is a celebration of the human spirit. People from all over the world train their minds and bodies for months to run 42km on a single day to prove that they can defeat pain, suffering, and fear, that they can achieve their dreams, and that they can be better than themselves.

The people who ran Boston Marathon left their homes on that day hoping to run and celebrate life. Little did they know that some of them would lose their lives or limbs due to a senseless terrorist act.

In that silence, I, perhaps along with thousands of other runners that day, pledged to run for the victims. With black ribbons on our shirts, we ran for those who wouldn’t be able to run again.


Within a few seconds, the race had begun. I didn’t hear a gun start. There was no booming sound to signify the beginning of the race. There was a gradual movement of the traffic as runners made their way out of the assembly and into the roads.

That slow start was probably the slowest I would ever go during the race. The roads through the little town of Greenwich, with its quaint restaurants around us, were narrow and kept all of us runners in close contact. It seemed that all the runners around me had planned on going at a quick pace. I wished I could’ve gone at a more conservative pace, but honestly there seemed to be no choice!

I ran at a 5:45 to 5:50 pace along with the rest of the crowd and just felt relieved that, based on how my body and legs felt, I knew I could sustain the pace.


Hydration was provided in bottle form both for water (Nestle Pure Life) and sports drinks (Lucozade). This was both a pro and a con for me. It was good because you could take the bottle along with you during the run and dispose as you please. But, with every station, I found myself staring down at the ground ensuring I don’t slip on any of these bottles. It was quite a treacherous situation for this accident prone runner (Think Berlin Marathon and Disneyland Los Angeles flying off the road accidents in the past! LOL.)

The large difference with the runners in London Marathon was this: they rarely stopped to drink! I kid you not. At each station, they would grab the bottle and drink as they ran. All of them. My plan of taking walk breaks at each station went out the window by the first station. I just couldn’t find a place to slow down or stop on the road. In my mind, I found it hilarious but I also panicked. Could I possibly survive a 42km without taking any walk breaks at all?! I’ve never done that before.

- What the?! Don’t ask me what I was doing here. Suffice it to say I looked crazy-happy -

The number of spectators that came out on the streets to cheer for runners was a pleasant surprise for me.  They lined the roads from start to finish!  There was never a moment of dullness or silence. They cheered loudly and whole-heartedly yelling the names of runners who had labelled their shirts. I didn’t write my name on my shirt, but luckily—not once, but twice on different portions of the race—I had run along with runners named Jaimie, so I heard “Go Jaimie!” or “You can do it, Jaimie!” often enough to egg me on! LOL

One of my favorite portions of this race was crossing the Tower Bridge at around Km 19.  There were a lot more spectators and cheerers in this area (not that the number of spectators who came out to cheer for us was lacking!) but this was definitely a high point of the race.

KM 21

I hit my 21k split at 2:07. I was happy with my split. Not too fast, not too slow. Body check: how did I feel? No pain anywhere in the body. Even better, I felt strong and focused. Stronger than I had ever been in the past.

The run from 21k to 32k went by quickly. I didn’t even notice passing St. Paul’s Cathedral at Km 24!  I do recall the fantastic cheering from the spectators and the beautiful sights and scenes around me.

By 32k, I was starting to slow. My legs were starting to tire and both my calves were threatening to cramp, but my mind kept me going. I repeated my mantra (stolen from Noy Jopson’s Facebook status): “Pain only hurts.” I said this to myself over and over again as I recalled the times I had been through worse in a race. It’s true you know. When you’re going through something difficult whether in a race or in life, you just remember a time in the past when you experienced worse and overcame it. And so, I remembered Ironman 70.3 Cebu, the heat, the pain, the exhaustion. With that, I knew I would get through this.

- Grin and bear it, baby! -

I put one step in front of the other. I didn’t stop. I ran. For the first time in all the eight marathons I’ve ran in the past, I ran all the way. It wasn’t something I had planned or even wanted desperately. After all, I fully believe in the value of taking walk breaks; walking isn’t a sign of weakness. But, during this race, I just felt the power in my body and mind to go, and go, and go. I believed in what my body and mind told me to do and I did it.

- Passing the London Eye –

I ran past the Houses of Parliament, Big Ben, and Buckingham Palace.  Before I knew it, I could see the finish line.

- The London Eye in the background –

- Houses of Parliament. Is this a marathon or a tour? Maybe both! –

- Big Ben meant the finish line was near -

- Now that’s a monster runner! –

- Buckingham Palace behind me (I think!) –


I crossed the finish line at 4:24. It was the exact same time as my best marathon time at Condura 2010.

- Posedown at the finish line, of course! –

After crossing the finish, I received my medal, had my Ipico chip removed, had my photo taken with the medal, and claimed my baggage all within 10 minutes. That’s how well organized this race was.

All around me, people were congratulating each other. I did learn to say “Well done!” to all the runners around me and not the usual “Congratulations” we all say in Manila LOL.

As I walked at The Mall and onto the Meet & Greet area by Admiralty Arch, I was overwhelmed with the atmosphere. Runners hugging loved ones. Everyone in a celebratory mood. And, oh, what a view!

- Wow! –

I headed over to the Letter Z where hubby and kids agreed to meet me. I sat alone drinking my Enervon HP and eating the free apple that came with our goodie bag for a good 30 minutes until they came. By this time, I had already changed into warmer clothes.

It was nice to see my family greet me at the finish and to have the kiddos see first hand the magic that occurs in a marathon. I asked my son if he wanted to run this marathon in the future and he replied: Yes.

With that, the perfect marathon day came to an end.  This was undoubtedly the best marathon experience I’ve ever had. I have a rule that I should only run a marathon once, but, for London Marathon, let’s just say I can make an exception.

- with my kiddos! –

- Proudly showing off my 9th marathon medal. What’s next?! –

Previous: Part 3: London Marathon – The Race Start

Thank you so much to all the people who got me to London! Unilab Active Health for sponsoring the trip. Special thanks to my favorites Enervon Activ for keeping me energized during training and race day and Enervon HP for aiding in recovery. Thank you to Timex Philippines and Timex UK who snagged me a race slot.


TBR Dream Team Run: “The Happiest Run Ever!”

Tuesday, 20 November 2012  |  Favorite Posts, Race Reports

WOW. This is so much fun!

That’s what I thought as I watched the runners come in during our first TBR Dream Team Run last Saturday, November 17, 2012 at NUVALI. And, as I welcomed the teams of runners coming in, that’s all I heard too!

“It was the ‘funnest’ run!”

“Ang saya!”

“It was so much fun!”

“There should be more team runs like this!”

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- TBR Dream Team Run medal –

We conceptualized this run a year ago with the vision of making it the first reunion run for TBR Dream Marathon alumni and their friends.  TBR Dream Marathon is and always has been a unique run because, even when the marathon is over, you’re almost bonded for life with other TBR Dreamers.  We wanted to provide a venue for all our TBR Dreamers—batches 1, 2, 3, and our current participants (yes, that’s how many we are now!)—to gather together once again.

We had one goal in mind: Let’s make it fun!  We wanted it to be light and happy, a celebration of friends and running hence half the distance of a marathon.  We hoped to encourage bonding and camaraderie among the alumni and their friends who they hoped to “recruit” into the running world so we made it into a team run.  We created the BullStock, a laid-back post race celebration with overflowing milk from Enervon HP and Krispy Kreme donuts with lots of laughter and chit-chat hosted by the Boys Night Out.

When you see the photos below, along with a few Facebok statuses that I “borrowed” from those who run the race, you’ll see that we pretty much achieved our goal!  Perhaps my only regret is that I didn’t run it myself!

To all those who participated in TBR Dream Team Run, thank you for coming!  We had a grand time and I hope you did too.  It was heartwarming to see you all once again!  Keep the dream alive! :)

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- Powerpuff Boys was well represented. They won 1st and 2nd Place! -

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– Team Gangnam?! -

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- Spongebob, Patrick, and Bugs Bunny -

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– The snail runners! -

“As an age-grouper who has run various races, I rank this as the best fun run of the calendar for several reasons:
1) Revisiting your first mary is an experience in itself;
2) Distance was perfect–it was achievable, reasonably costume-friendly, yet naturally constrains the race to a manageably pleasant size;
3) Though it is not uncommon to see friends during races, seeing them in themed groups and not in their usual anti-social Zone 5 state was sheer fun;
4) Race organization that has been fine-tuned thru the years;
5) Finishing with friends–priceless.

Thanks, Jaymie, sponsors and volunteers!”
– Roland Benzon

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- Team in red… -

– …and The Red Runners without shirts nor shoes! -

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- We’ve got a blue team too! -

– Team TBR (Truly Bright Runners!) -

“Race was fantastic, post-race was fun, shirt is the bomb… time with friends new and old = unforgettable. Thank you all!”
– Vince Bunuan

- Hey sole sistah! Hey sole sistah! -

The happiest run ever by The Bullrunner Dream Marathon Team of Jaymie Pizarro and Jun Cruz. You’ve raised the bar guys! Now time to sleep.. I think we all deserve it after that 4:30 gunstart at Nuvali!”
– Tina Zamora

- with running mommies Tina Zamora and Maricel Pangilinan! -

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– Three bumblebees won best costume award -

After the race, runners were treated to Enervon HP and donuts from Krispy Kreme. The awarding was hosted by a trio as well: the Boys Night Out! Hilarious!

- Yeah Men! -

– Awarding of Team Powerpuff Boys -

“Congrats Jaymie Pizarro, Jun Cruz, Neville Manaois and the rest of the TBR alumni run team for the best 21km run of the year! Thanks to Team No Judgement: Jamike and Jake for a fun run!!!”
– Ton Gatmaitan

– with Team No Judgement (Jake, Ton, and Jamike) with Lit, Lester of Unilab Active Health, Jun, and Neville –

- Thanks Jun of TBR Dream Team who made this event a huge success. Here he is with just some of his “fans” led by Coach Norman Pascual -

- Justine and Macel, the two girls who made everything behind the scenes run oh-so smoothly! Thank you! -

– with Jun, Neville, and Macel at 2am before the race. Couldn’t be happier to work with a fantastic team -

Thank you to our sponsors who made this all possible!!! Presenter: Unilab Active Health. Co-Presenter: Runrio.  Official Venue Partner: Nuvali.  Major Sponsor: Gatorade.  Minor Sponsor: Enervon HP, Nutribar, Thorlos, Chris Sports, Paramount Insurance, Krispy Kreme, Spibelt, and Timex. Registration Partners: Secondwind, Riovana, and Starting Line. Media Partner: Multisport.  Beneficiary: Hero Foundation.

Aw Shucks! Thanks Runner’s World Philippines!

Wednesday, 24 October 2012  |  Favorite Posts, Press

You know how it feels when someone you admire acknowledges you and your work, like a well-esteemed professor giving you an A+ or your boss tapping your back for a job well done? That’s how I felt when Marie Calica, Editor-in-Chief of Runner’s World Philippines, invited me to be on the cover of Runner’s World Philippines’ Oct-Dec 2012 issue.

Whenever I recount my story of how I started running in 2006, it always starts with an 8-week beginners’ program that I downloaded from Runner’s World.  From then on, Runner’s World became my source for all things running.  At that time, I didn’t have anyone to ask nor were there many local running blogs or websites to read, but there was RW!  It was my running bible…and it still is.

Aw, Runner’s World, it’s an honor to be featured on your pages.  Thanks for allowing me to share my story and, um, how I’m “Stub-born to Run.”  Now you know that you’re partially to blame for creating this bullish runner.



Runner’s World is out.  Get your copies in bookstores and running stores now!

Race Report: Tri United 2 – From Holy Shiv to Holy Cramps!

Friday, 6 July 2012  |  Favorite Posts, Race Reports

Event: Tri united 2
Date: 1 July 2012
Venue: Laiya, Batangas
Organizer: Bike King

Tri United 2 was to be my first long distance triathlon: swim 2k, bike 60k, and run 15k. To say, I was nervous would be an understatement. The only thing that could console me was that I knew I had run marathons for about the same amount of time I expected to finish this triathlon. Still, my mind knew triathlons were a different animal, and, it was during this race, that my body learned that too.

- Teammates Bic, Jake, and I after we set up our bikes at transition –

- with Harvie, Alex, Roland, Coach Norman, Jake, and Bic. Before a triathlon, it helps to hang out with friends who are calmer than you! -

– with Bic, Drew, and August a few minutes before race start -

- Saling pusa! Photo courtesy of John Ramon -


The start of a triathlon is nerve wracking. You’re all lined up at the shore facing the unknown. You don’t know what lurks in the deep blue sea (jellyfish away!), and, worse, what lies ahead of you for the next few hours of the race.

- Nervous smile.  Photo courtesy of Rose Marie Photography -

The swim course for Tri United 2 consisted of three loops. I was confident about my swim, but also anxious.  As a runner, I can anticipate and probably manage matters on the road, but, in water, I felt like I was treading in unknown territory. No pun intended.

My teammates Jake, Bic, and I wiggled our way through the crowd of triathletes lined up at the starting line. We poised ourselves on the far end of the left side. Our strategy, according to Jake, would be to swim on the far left end avoiding the traffic then cut to the right when it was time to turn the loop. Sounded like a good plan.

The gun went off and, barely a couple of minutes into the swim, Bic and Jake were gone. I was on solo flight…or solo fight. Probably both.

I struggled to find my rhythm amidst the chaos of flailing arms and kicking feet. Suddenly, a thought came to mind: What do I cling on to if I tire out? I was so far from the buoy! Almost instantly, I panicked.  I could hardly breathe. Like a drowning dog, I paddled my way towards the buoy. There, I found my comfort zone and proceeded to swim beside it.

By the 2nd loop, I found a sense of calm in the steady pace of my strokes. With every breath, I caught a glimpse of the sun. In my head, I said a short prayer asking God to keep me safe and thanking him for the awesome opportunity to participate in this race.

- Out of the water for the next loop. I was having fun! –

The third loop was swift and strong. I found my rhythm along with a burst of confidence that I was capable of finishing this race. I swam to the finish pulling hard but leaving enough for the bike and run.

Time for 2k swim: 49mins.

- Ani de Leon heading to transition –


It was the first time my boyfriend, the Shiv, and I were going to race together. I must admit, I was excited to see the progress I made in biking. From being unable to shift gears and ride in aero position, I could now do so with ease, plus drink, and take a gel, and even refill my bottles while riding!  (Next goal is to peel a banana and eat it!)

- That’s my boyfriend, the Shiv, and I! Off we go on our first triathlon together! -

Prior to the race, Coach Andy Leuterio had analyzed the results of a Power Meter test he conducted on me a couple of weeks ago. Based on the results, he said that my heart rate went too high when I pushed hard on the bike (which was expected because I’m new to cycling) so he advised that I keep it steady on the bike to ensure that I could run strong. I obediently followed.

- Steady she goes. Photo courtesy of Jazz Perez, Sports Unlimited -

The ride was steady, conservative, smooth, and, I must say, super fun.  Every now and then, faster cyclists would overtake me yelling “Right! Right!” which would rattle me, but for the most part, I think I was cycling with a smile all the way to the finish.

- Teammate Bic makes the turnaround. I wish I could turn as easily as she did! –

Time for 60km bike: 2:11

RUN – 15KM

I didn’t know how my body would react to running 15km after the swim and bike.  It’s one thing to race 15km and another to run 15km in the sweltering heat in a triathlon. I expected heavy wooden legs as soon as I left my bike at transition. Surprisingly, my legs felt great. (In hindsight, it’s probably because I was conservative on the bike.)

- Off to run wearing my bike gloves! Whoops! Photo courtesy of Noel Miano-

I ran the first loop steady and strong. By the second loop, the heat started getting to me. At every station, I dropped a pail or bottle of water over my body to cool down. It was almost like taking a shower at every station. (It was only at that point that I finally realized why triathletes choose to wear these body-hugging unforgiving trisuits! It’s so much more convenient for showering when the sun is beating down on you! Why didn’t we runners think of that?!)

- Steady run. Photo courtesy of Noel Miano -

- Keeping cool! -

It was also at this point that the mistakes I made during training and racing caught up with me. By the third loop, both legs started cramping up from my calves climbing up to my quads. I had never cramped up in my entire running life! I started shuffling my way through the last 5km. At the same time, I began talking to my legs (by the way, this always works!): Run. Run. Run. We can do this. I also prayed that they wouldn’t suddenly freeze on me and make me fall flat on my face a few hundred meters from the finish line!

Thankfully, the slow shuffle and the psych talk worked! I crossed the finish line even if I didn’t feel my legs AT ALL! It was one of the most fulfilling race finishes I had ever experienced. Right up there with all my marathon finishes. Hehe.

Time for Run 15k: 1:43 mins


The most important gift of Tri United 2 to me, aside from the scintillating star-shaped medal, is the assurance that I’m on the right track towards Ironman 70.3 Cebu. For this last month leading up to Cebu, I know what I should work on (and there are a lot!), what I should continue, and, last but not the least, what power the mind has over the body!

After crossing that finish line, I heaved a sigh of relief.  My trepidation over Cebu considerably lessened and a feeling of excitement swept over me.  For the first time since I impulsively signed up for my seemingly impossible Ironman 70.3 goal, it suddenly occurred to me: Holy crap, I can actually do this!

- with Teammate Jake and Coach Andy Leuterio at the post-race awarding. Tons of food, lots of laughter, and I got to fill up a whole glass with free chilled Enervon HP for my recovery drink. Hay, I can’t have enough of it! -

- with training buddy, Jun, and Coach Norman, my coach for bike skills. Thanks Coach! –

- with friend Vanj Endaya -

- with new tri friends, Jay and Mark. Photo courtesy of Mark Salvador –

Congratulations to Unilab Active Health and Bike King for a fantastic race! For official results, visit Unilab Active Health website