Having run the farthest and fastest in two separate training runs this week, I felt confident about Run To Bring Hope. I was pretty sure I could break my PR, but I didn’t want to be presumptious about it. Who knew what could traspire during a race: I could faint, stumble on a rock, or worse, faint and hit my head on a rock! (Mind you, after what I’ve been through this is a highly plausible scenario.) So, I stayed hopeful (I guess all runners should’ve been due to the run’s title) but my feet were firmly on the ground (Guys, that’s a metaphor. I do lift my feet when I run.)
I arrived at the assembly area in Rajah Sulayman Park to see runners warming up for the race. This was relatively a small race so the mood was pretty relaxed and calm. As always, most participants were men, but surprisingly there were a large number of women too. I saw groups of girls with lean and thin physiques who, I was guessing, could probably outrun the men due to their sheer weightlessness!
Since I arrived way too early again, I had enough time to warm up, run to the restroom, tie my shoelace, run to the restroom again, retie my shoelace in the restroom, and chat with fellow Happy Feet Runners. Phew, next time I promise to get their right before the race starts so you won’t have to read through that irksome list again!
– Happy Feet! The more, the merrier –
– Mabuhay ang Pilipinas—at ang Happy Feet! –
“Five minutes to the start of the race.” I was chatting away with Happy Feet when I heard that. “2 minutes”…We were still chatting. “1 minute.” I squeezed my way into the first few rows behind the starting line. “10 seconds.” I set up my Nike+. “Go!” I clicked on my ipod and off I went.
The course was plain and simple. We ran through the flat, paved roads of Roxas Boulevard. No hills nor flyovers this time. I ran the first half at a pace a bit faster than my usual race pace. I couldn’t confirm this because I refused to glance at my ipod. Those few seconds count you know?!
By the second half, I felt like I drank a stale bottle of beer. It tasted like slight exhaustion mixed in with drops of boredom. Truly the result of one main ingredient: flat, unchallenging, bland roads. To add some spice to the recipe, I decided to apply the strategies Coach B taught me. I practiced longer strides with recovery periods in between. Oooh, I was flying! Together with Dave Matthews’ “Ants Marching” on my ipod, I was cruising at warp speed! Well, maybe not that fast but that’s how I felt.
– Runners crossing the finish line –
I ended the run with the biggest surprise ever. My time: 46.57 minutes! A whopping 10 minutes less than my PR! (Note: My Nike+ counted total distance at only 9.57 km)
What?! My Nike+ refuses to end the session. I press all the buttons, tap it, turn it upside down, and curse it to the high heavens, but it pretends not to hear me. The traitor! I thought he had been my best running buddy and, at my best run ever, he decides to abandon me?! Who does he think he is?!
After a few photos and more chatting with Happy Feet, I drive home proud of what I’ve accomplished but supremely pissed at the ipod for hanging on me. It didn’t record the entire run. Grrrr…I don’t have proof of my own personal victory. Oh well, I’m looking at the bright side, at least I didn’t faint.
– with Mary Anne and Jenny. So glad to meet you both! Looking forward to running together! –
– Batman/Spidey could’ve done 50k more –
– Run To Bring Hope awarding and raffle –