After visiting the blog of Neville Manaois, the man behind Run For Your Life 100km, I instantly wanted to interview him. Who wouldn’t be curious about his group’s training program, the background of each of these runners, and the entire story behind this run? Why, when he mentioned that 30-40km was a short run for them, I wanted to drive on over to his place just to say “You must be crazy!” Fortunately, within the same day of emailing a set of questions to Neville, he quickly responded and put my mind at ease.
What is the Run For Your Life?
Run for your life is a project initiated by a group of runners to raise funds for cancer patients. Our goal is to support Kythe which looks into the welfare of cancer patients specifically kids who need all our help and attention. Donors and supporters can make a financial pledge to the 6 member team running to the marathon all proceeds will go to Kythe.
When and where will the run be held?
This will happen in key cities in Metro Manila. We will start running at the UP mountaineers tambayan in UP diliman on July 21 at 7pm. We will be having a send off for the team and people can go there to donate or pledge for the runners. Our sponsor The North Face as well as Kythe will be there as well. This run will go on the entire night going around metro manila and we will proceed to the Quirino Grandstand to join the milo 42km run dun na rin yung finish line.
How did this idea come about? Why did you choose running as a fund raising event for cancer patients?
Romi Garduce, a close friend of mine encouraged me to push through with the plans of doing an ultra marathon. After procrastinating and thinking about it, I said yes thinking we would have three months to prepare. Yun pala 1 month na lang. So, we had the option to pull out or continue. We decided to push through kasi saying naman yung plano and we were already talking to sponsors, runners and other members.
We eventually decided to put the team’s running talents to good use. Inspired by other ultra marathons we decided we could use this run to generate funds for cancer patients. Rather than showing what ultra marathon is all about we want to show how running can help people and maybe inspire change. We focused our attention on cancer since most of us have friends, relatives, love ones, who died or battling cancer. On a more personal note, I have a close friend who I witness everyday fighting to live and it pains me to see that I can’t do anything.
Running is one of the simplest sports. You just need to run, no venue, no high-tech equipment, just run. The team has been running for a long time so we have decided to use our skills and talents. At the same time, we are promoting ultramarathon as a sport and people can do it.
Who are the runners joining? What are your backgrounds?
Most of the team members are members of the UP mountaineers. I have spent countless hours with them during runs, climbs and races. The short time frame given to us means that we need to chose people who we already know. We have invited other runners but the concern was the training is too short. I agree with them, that’s why we decide to focus on a group of people who have participated in long and strenuous activities. Most of all, we decided to recruit these people since they have sense of humour hahaha. The team members are all working so it was an extra challenge. The members are also involved in activities like marathon, ultimate frisbee, mountain biking, climbing, triathlon, most of all running. Hehehe.
How long have you trained for this?
We all have running backgrounds and we run twice a week or ride bikes or other activities. We officially started our training 1st week of June with the knowledge that the target date would be August but as I told you it was moved to July for the Milo Marathon. So, we have actually six weeks to train. All of us are working so I created a realistic plan. Long runs only weekend and the rest of the week do your own thing. So every Saturday or Sunday, we have long runs—not distance but time. First week four hours, then second week five hours etc. A lot of us got sick hahahahaha. Check out my blog I posted my Nike+ stats.
How does a typical week of your training program look?
We have individual trainings. Once a week, I do long runs. Real long, like five to six hours. I don’t care about the mileage. What is important is how much time I spent running or walking (we have to train walking also). The rest of the week I run only once usually Wednesdays, since I have to work and make arrangements for the project.
How do you feel now that the event is drawing near? Excited? Anxious?
Anxious, and the ominous task is bearing down on me. Kabado talaga!!! I am having a hard time focusing with my work and also my studies hehehehe. But I will just look at it as an ordinary training run with a cause. I just hope I don’t get sick. Hehehe. Its just been very busy, the only time I can really think about the run is during the long runs.
Can other runners join a shorter distance and help collect pledges?
Yes, other runners can join in and collect pledges. We also have guest runners. Sad to say we may not be able to provide support to other runners in terms of transportation, sponsors and the rest. I suggest that you run with us and collect your own pledge. The goal if this run is to jumpstart these kinds of activities. We already have plans in store. When we finalize the route you can actually join us and we hope you join and create your own pledge. It is time to give something back to the community.
How can we pledge?
I will be releasing two posters today all information could be seen there about pledge. But here are some of the details how you too can be a part of “RUN FOR YOUR LIFE”:
- Pledge PhP500.00 for every kilometer that the runners will run. Each kilometer completed contributes directly to Kythe Foundation’s Cancer Fund and Child Life Program for chronically-ill children.
- Pledge then join the runners as they do the 100-km. RUN FOR YOUR LIFE beginning July 21 at 7:00 pm and ending on July 22 at 10:30 am at the Milo 42-km Marathon Eliminations. It’s fun, satisfying and life-saving!
Donate directly to Kythe Foundation at these receiving areas:
- Via ” Kythe Inc. “BPI Family Bank, East Avenue branch. Account number 6031-0529-02.
- At the start of the RUN at the University of the Philippines Mountaineers, UP Diliman Campus on July 21,2007 starting at 6:00 pm. The staff of Kythe will be there to receive donations.
- Quirino Grandstand on July 22, 2007 Milo Marathon Metro Manila Eliminations. This is where the RUN ends. Upon fulfillment of your pledge, you will receive a certificate of 10% discount on products from The North Face.
- at the Rockwell Mall Press Conference on August 7, 2007.
Pledge now! See you at the RUN!
For more information on the runners’ profiles, pledges & donations to Kythe, visit Kythe, U.P. Mountaineers, Hirap Mag Run, or email firstname.lastname@example.org