Celebrating World Milk Day on June 11

Friday, 10 June 2016  |  Race Announcements

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The kids and I are all set to join our 3k family run tomorrow as we celebrate World Milk Day along with Alaska Milk Corporation at Alaska Milk Day.

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This is the 4th year of Alaska Milk Day and this year’s celebration will have participants from Metro Manila, Davao, Cebu and for the first time, Naga. The activity will involve individual (3km and 5km) race category in the provincial areas. While in Metro Manila, there will be individual (3km and 5km), 3 km family run race categories and a 1km Disney’s Frozen and Marvel themed fun run event for children ages 4-7 years old. There’s even going to be a Zumba event in all venues! (more…)

The Curious Case of Mary Joy Tabal

Friday, 3 June 2016  |  News + Promos

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I was asked to publish this article to share with you the other side of the story behind Mary Joy Tabal’s qualifying for the Rio Olympics. (See press release here.)

I hear that it’s a controversial topic lately among runners, but, quite honestly, it’s the first time I’ve heard about this so I don’t feel I’m informed enough to express an opinion. However, I do believe it’s important to share this article to help shed light on the issue and allow the public to decide for themselves.

Below is the article written by PATAFA marketing head, Edward Kho:

The Curious Case of Mary Joy Tabal
What it truly means for her to represent the Philippines in the Rio Olympics

The running community recently celebrated the success of Mary Joy Tabal hitting the Olympic standard for marathon. Joy ran a 2:43:30-hour marathon time at the 2016 Scotiabank Ottawa Marathon, beating the 2:45-hour standard for her to join the Olympics. While the running community celebrates, there are mixed feelings inside the Philippine Athletics Track and Field Association (PATAFA). (more…)

Mary Joy Tabal Secures her Slot for the Rio Olympics

Tuesday, 31 May 2016  |  Press

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Congratulations to Mary Joy Tabal who proved that hard work and determination can propel oneself to success! Tabal secured her slot for the Rio Olympics when she finished the Scotiabank Ottawa Marathon on Sunday, May 29 (May 30, Philippine time). After falling short in her stint at the Boston Marathon last April, the reigning MILO Marathon Queen was able to make an impressive comeback at Ottawa Marathon’s flat and fast race course.

Tabal clocked in with an impressive time of 2:43:29, beating the 2:45:00 Olympic qualifying time for the women’s marathon. She ranked 5th in the female age group, 8th in the overall elite female category and 38th in the overall elite male and female category, out of a total of 4,416 elite participants.

The unusually hot and humid weather prompted the organizers to implement route and time changes before the event but Tabal was able to deliver a strong performance at the start of the race. As she neared the finish line, she was troubled by intense leg pains which caused her to slow down. Despite this, the Filipina frontrunner still willed herself to overcome the challenge.

“My body felt heavier when I reached the 35km mark and my pacing got slower and slower as I went farther,” Tabal shared. “When I checked, I was only 7km shy to the end of the race. I decided to carry on forcefully and ignore the pain. It was very difficult to preserve my stride especially in the last 200 meters. I kept on telling myself that if I stop now, I won’t be able to make it here again so I ran like it was the last my race of my life. I was so happy to be able to hit my goal I broke down in tears as I ran past the finish line.”

After the disappointment of not qualifying through the Boston Marathon, Tabal never gave up and immediately returned to her training ground to pursue her Olympic dream. Now with another feather on her cap, Tabal, with the help of her coach Philip Duenas, will be embarking on a new journey to prepare for the Rio Olympics. “I couldn’t believe this is happening! I often ask myself if this is real or not. To play in the Olympics was once a dream but now it’s finally in my hands,” she said. “I hope this will inspire more Filipino athletes who dreamt like I did. It may seem impossible at first, but all it really takes is a lot of effort and willpower in overcoming trials to be able to achieve your goals.”

Race Report: Vancouver Marathon – The Race (Part 2 of 2)

Monday, 16 May 2016  |  Race Reports

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BMO Vancouver Marathon is the city’s one and only marathon.  My Vancouverite cousin says it’s because May is the only time the weather is perfect to stage one!

For the 45th BMO Vancouver Marathon, total number of participants reached its record high this year with 16,500 runners.  This would be for all categories: 2.5k walk, kids’ run, 8k, 21k, 42k relay and 42k. The BMO Vancouver Marathon is a relatively small race compared to any of the World Marathon Majors which have 42k runners alone reaching over 40,000 in number.  With only around 5,000 runners participating in this marathon, I actually looked forward to experiencing a smaller race with less of the foot traffic and craziness that goes with the bigger races.

I came to this marathon as I have done with my past races lately.  I just wanted to have fun.  Turning 40 was a huge milestone in my life and I just needed to celebrate it in a big way.  I didn’t need to prove to myself that I was fit at 40, or that I could break a PR I hit a few years ago when I was younger.  In fact, I didn’t feel the need to prove myself to anything or anyone.

At 40, I just wanted to celebrate the life I have now.  A life that is my own, independent, honest, peaceful, content, free, and hopeful.

I finished with a time of 4:54.  Not that great a time, but I did have a great time! Hah!

Here goes my race review for BMO Vancouver Marathon:

EVENT: 45th BMO Vancouver Marathon 2016
DATE: May 1, 2016
START: Queen Elizabeth Park
FINISH: West Pender St. 
CUT OFF TIME: 7hrs (more…)

Race Report: Vancouver Marathon – Pre-Race (Part 1 of 2)

Sunday, 15 May 2016  |  Race Reports

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I chose Vancouver Marathon for the simple reason that I wanted to run a marathon for my 40th birthday. This was one of the races on the first weekend of May that popped up on Google. With a number of relatives who call Vancouver home, Vancouver was perfect. I registered for the race without batting an eyelash and booked our flights.

Discovering that Forbes.com named it as a top destination marathon in the world and CNN Travel calling it one of the world’s most “exotic” marathons (don’t ask me why!) a couple of weeks after registering was a wonderful bonus. (more…)