365 days after TNF100 2011

Today mark the first anniversary of my first ever TNF race… it could also be my last; we’ll never know.

I didn’t have any plans to join this race. BDM is crazy. Why on earth should I subject myself to something crazier? Well, I don’t know. 

A newfound friend literally sold the idea to me. He made it appear so enticing, it got me thinking. With most of my friends going into multi-sport, what’s next for me? This could be it. 

Well, I did it. It was scary running without support, in total darkness during night time (I am glad Casper was not anywhere near me), and i was in the woods where I dreaded the presence of snakes. 

What can I say now? Here’s the note I wrote two days after the race…

I just woke up and i walked like a zombie. Last night on the bus, I realized that my feet and legs are a bit swollen… they looked bigger this morning and my ankle is swollen too.

I am still dazed… If there is a word that is much better than happy; I guess I am in that state. My physical pain and maladies are masked by that feeling.

This race was never part of my list… I have done a number of ultramarathon and I thought BDM would be the icing on the cake of all my ultra races. TNF 100 is so much more! BDM will always be SPECIAL to me and I guess the degree of difficulty of the two races is truly different owing to the fact that BDM is road and TNF is trail and may I emphasize — self-supporting.

BDM is supposed to be my last race before I leave the country next week for professional advancement. I really didn’t have plans of doing any race because I wanted to really rest and recover. The idea of doing the TNF was initially floated by Yob, which he posted on my FB wall/status several days  after the BDM. I f I can remember it right, I actually told him that I will never do it.

If my memory serves me right, a fellow BDM finisher and a public servant asked me to consider doing the TNF second week of March. He literally pushed the idea and of course crazy as it may, I succumbed to the pressure because he also promised that we’ll train together and that he’ll never leave me come race day. He was also very generous with his time telling me over and over again his experience when he did TNF 100 in Baguio last year. If there is one person who would get my deepest THANK YOU, it would be him.

I consulted two friends who successfully did TNF 100, Nao (Baguio) and Dhenz (Sacobia and Baguio). Nao sent me a very informative message, which i pondered for a day. I chatted with Dhenz and asked him all the things that I wanted to know, his pointers were really helpful. The idea of these two wonderful people sealed the deal. Thank you so much to the two of you.

Initially, I didn’t tell my closest running friends that I am doing TNF. I already know their reactions hehehe but I have to give it to them. The moment they knew, they were very supportive after the initial guffaws and what have you’s.

So before I get carried away and turn this note into a blog let me just thank the following friends who one way or another helped me in this new achievement.

1. To Maj Jun Cunanan: the one person who bullied me, coached me, trained me, and made me his unwilling protege’ THANK YOU SO MUCH, SIR! I truly appreciate everything that you did for me for this race, words are really not enough. Thank you for staying with me, Cheryl, Aaron, Donie and Erell all the way. You were awesome back there. Truly a feeling and self-less individual who never left us even if you have a goal of your own. I’m sorry if at some point my emotions and physical issues got the better of me. I really don’t have any justification for it…

2. To Boypra: my willing training partner, my newfound baby brother — salamat, bebe! To Dabong, kahit pawala wala ka, dude hehehe Thank you! Kebur parin ang the best hehehe at kahit walang falls sa Montalban happy parin.

3. To Yob: Thank you so much! I will always be thankful that I met you. Looking forward to doing those crazy ultramarathons with you in the not so distant future. Thank you for believing in me and for all the messages that you sent.

I am a proud friend!

4. To my Team Baldrunner friends, Iah, Tin, Helen, Maridol, Mark, Jerry, Macky, Kaye, JV, Carlo, Mikko: Thank you so much! We have come a long way since our speed training days. When most of you ventured into multi-sports, I had nowhere to go. I found a new trail, guys and i guess I will stick with it for a while 🙂 I miss you all! Let’s get ready to parteeeeeehhhh!!!

Team Baldrunner Professionals

5. To Team Boring: thank you sa lahat ng suporta, words of encouragement at sa pagkakaibigan — GROUP HUG! I hope I made you proud 🙂

6. To Team CB: Thank you sa inyong lahat! Miss ko na kayo!

7. To JJ, Mai, and Leya: Ano ba ang masasabi ko mga kapatid, kundi salamat! Alam nyo na kung anong nilalaman ng aking puso nyahahahahaha

8. To Ate Marga: Thank you, Ate Luvs for everything. Your love never seizes to amaze me. I truly love you! mwaaaahhhh

I love you so much, ate luvs!

9. To my bestfriend: Thank you, Addict! Alam mo na yun hihihihi

10. To Jaq: Thank you, sis!

11. To my new found friends: Cheryl and Aaron: Thank you so much! The trails of Mt Isarog and the whole 100KM is a silent witness to the camaraderie that I was able to develop with you. To Jeff and family: Thank you for the very warm accomodation. Please hug your Nanay for me! FR: Salamat! And to the rest of the AMCI peeps who supported us, Thank you! To Donnie and Erell, Thank you!

12. To my soul sister, the one and only diva, Melanie: What can I say? Thank you, Sis!

13. To Baldrunner: Thank you so much, Sir! you will always be my inspiration  🙂 Thank you for planting the seed of ultramarathon in my heart.

14. To Marky: Thanks much! I really appreciate your support. Sorry if I wasn’t able to take your calls… basta, brother salamat!

15: To Lolo Earl: waaaaaaahhhhhhh!!! so sorry, i kinda forgot — Thank you so much for the calves sleeves! naglakad ka pa ng bonggang bongga para maibigay yun sa akin 🙂 Salamat talaga! ang laking tulong, lolo 🙂

Natatangi ka, lolo! mwaaaaaahhhhhh

16. To everyone who one way or another sent me their well-wishes: Thank you! Not mentioning your names doesn’t mean that your thoughts are not recognized. Your kindness will always be remembered, dear friends!

17. To my boys, Lorenz and Micah: I love you, kiddos! I run not because I want to get away from you when I train. I run because it makes me a better person and a better Mommy.

I am not perfect, but I will love you forever...

This one’s for you, Dear God — for all the strength and for giving me the will-power to finish all my crazy races. I give back all the glory to you!

******

HAPPY ANNIVERSARY TO ME!

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P2P: Is there anything left to say?

               Once again I procrastinated on writing my thoughts and personal insights on the races that I joined and some other stuff that I thought worth mentioning in this blog… if you can even call it that since my postings are usually far in between.

                I am not a prolific writer… I wish I am! It usually takes me a lot of effort before I could even finish an entry. During a race my head is usually full of ideas, the title of the blog entry, its contents, its focus; I always want it to be entertaining, but as you can see all those thoughts and ideas are sometimes just that –  thoughts that crowds my already clogged brain.

                My last entry is about my sorry finish during the Milo Marathon.  I joined a couple of races after that but dedicated most of my Sundays to long runs with my team as we were seriously preparing for the second leg of PAU in Ilocos Norte.

                I had high hopes that I will be stronger come race day; I was even dreaming of third place since I learned that Tina will not be joining. That makes Michelle the eventual winner, my partner Tin in second place then me (it was a wish, ok? Don’t raise your eyebrows just yet).

Flashback:

               Three weeks before P2P, the TGIS group decided to have a long run in Clark; since there was a scheduled race on that particular Sunday being organized by Atty Jon for the IP in the area, we decided to register. The plan was to do 10k before the race then 10k after to cover the planned 30K for the day. It was a balmy morning, the pre-race run was fun.

                The no frills “Takbo Para sa Katutubo” started a little after 6am. I didn’t have plans on racing it since it is just suppose to be part of the LSD. It was a good race, very simple, and the route was nice. I was having a good time chasing after my team mates when I suddenly felt something on my left knee… it was a sudden click. I slowed down then it hurt even more. I didn’t want to walk or stop until I saw Jan waiting by the water station. He paced with me for a very slow jog then he told me that it is ok to walk. The “fight another day” line brought me back to my senses. There is no way that I will jeopardize my P2P plan so I listened to him. I didn’t push it and finished the 10k in 1:03.

                The week after was a flurry of events, I continued with my training plan but I was more cautious since the knee was bothering me. I don’t understand what it was, just a nagging pain that gets worse when I go up and down the stairs.

                The following Sunday was another LSD from Amadeo, Cavite to Tagaytay. I didn’t finish that one either; I only managed 25K. It’s about time I admit that I am INJURED and my left knee is giving up on me. Well-meaning friends advised me to see a Doctor but then I realized that if I see him at this point in time he might tell me to rest or not to run in the next few weeks… That’s a big NO-NO! I have a big race ahead of me. Come hell or high water I am running that one. So rather than consulting a Doctor, our friend and elite “Bandit” prescribed Celebrex 200mg twice a day for three days. Being the hard-headed not practicing RN that I am, I took his advice hehehe  

                To make the long story short – I didn’t run for two weeks leading to P2P. I was worried; I was afraid and my third place finish was shelved for the time being. My goal at that point was to finish it within the cut-off time of 12 hours. Armed with a heart full of hope, attitude that has surpassed several debacles and encouragement and inspiration from Team BR-P, TGIS, and friends from the running community, i prepared for race day.

Team BR-P during the CLP and briefing at AFPCOC

 

                   That’s how we look like when we’re not in our running gear 🙂 I am glad the CLP was on a tuesday, I am not sure how other runners will react if they see me in my BDU.  The CLP unveiled more surprises… aside from the scenery, the Baldrunner revealed that the route is longer – 3Kms longer. Oh Dear! I am in deep trouble… How will I finish 68Kms in 12hours with my current condition? Honestly, I don’t know.

                    Two days before the P2P I received a message from a very dear friend informing me that they won their legal battle. Thinking at how hard they fought for that, I dedicated my P2P to them. I told her whatever happens, I will finish the race no matter how hard it will be. With that added inspiration I know I am ready.

                 I’ll see you all at the starting line!

D-DAY!

 

they say that the first time is always sweet and painful... indeed it was!

Tin, Edward our support crew, and I left the condo at 0230H. We then called Iah to tell him that we are on our way. Tin need to find a good parking slot, we find one very near the finish line.

I am not really sure how I was feeling during that time; I can’t even find the word to describe it… I didn’t know that my first time will be like that. I was unusually quiet on our way to the starting line – I got a lot of ribbing from Tin and Iah about the silence 🙂 that is not so like me!

The Captain, the muse, and Mr President

After visiting with some friends and going back to the portalet three times, we entered the starting line. The excitement was palpable; green was all I see. I’m not kidding when I tell you that I was so nervous; I could even hear my heartbeat. I tried to shake it off by chatting with my friends – I am so lucky to be surrounded by people who believe in me. We were having our picture taken with Sir BR when we heard the gun start… it went off just like that – no warning at all.  

The Team BR-P with Sir BR

I am not use to wearing a watch during races… I just always rely on the time at the start and finish lines. I am not saying I don’t want a Garmin, I do… the only problem is I may not be able to handle it – I am low-tech!

I know from our recon that the distance from the starting line before I turn to Macapagal is almost 8K so that will be the time to take Gerber. I plan to consume 5 to include one Roctane, which I planned to take before the turn around going to the finish. I am not good in remembering streets during races so I tried to take note of land marks where I will take that much needed energy boost. PICC, Blue Wave, first fly-over…

The first loop was generally a walk in the park. I know that I am on target since Tin is still with me; we were not pacing each other but I knew that she’s just behind me judging from the sound of her shoes 🙂 Learning from my past experiences on dehydration, I made sure that I stopped in all water stations. I also brought extra hydration in case I will miss some. I also left a considerable amount with Edward and Manong Vicente. I was more than surprise to see Jucel before my ascent to the flyover on my first loop. That thoughtful gesture will always be remembered, Jucel.  

still strong on the first loop

I was generally oblivious of what’s happening around me all throughout the run. I was just looking down and tried to look up from time to time. I was actually praying… it took me one Apostle’s Creed, one Our Father, three Hail Mary’s, and one Glory Be to reach the top of each fly-over. I did that all throughout the 10x that I negotiated that ascent. I doubled it though on the last two on my way to the finish line.

I still have no issues on my second loop… I was still with Tin. I am still pretty strong and hoped that if I will maintain such pace before I reached the third loop then maybe just maybe I’ll make it to the qualifying time.

still looking good on the second loop

I saw all the designated support areas of my takbo.ph friends, the team CB at the shell station, and the team of Miss Nao of ANR Alabang near Blue Wave. I didn’t stop for posterities in those areas; it would have been nice to have my picture taken with you guys especially with my placard (thank you ate Luvs! Thank you Maccoy!) which I saw on my way to the second loop… I regret it but as I said I was really bent on qualifying. Thank you so much! I truly appreciate your presence, the cheers perked me up.

It was I guess along Metrobank when I saw a familiar figure ahead of me… I thought I was just mistaken but when I looked up I saw Iah walking… He’s cramping up. It was pretty humid by then; I myself was having hard time breathing. The stench is taking so much of my energy as well.

Jucel was again at Macapagal before KM22… the water he gave me was a welcome treat; I just downed my third Gerber. I also gave him my flask with a request for replenishment. I told him to look for Edward at HK Plaza. It was also about this time that Tin went ahead of me. That was actually the plan – for her to be in front of me so I’ll be motivated.

I saw Ma’am R of the Team BR who gave me ice candies which I also consumed in record time. I was thirsty! She also asked me if I need food, I said no. Thank you very much, Ma’am! That was so thoughtful of you.

It was still a breeze going through that road… I am imagining Km30 near Sofitel. I also know that this is my last loop before I finally do the turn-around. I wasn’t just prepared for the little incident that awaits me at Km30.  I don’t know what came over me but I suddenly felt really tired when I turned left where the band was stationed going to the direction of Sofitel. I just felt the need to stop, to sit, to just disappear. It was exactly at the KM30 marker when I was jolted back to my senses when somebody asked me where Iah was… I said “Nasa likod nagka cramps” then he said “huh? Anong nangyari sa inyo, diba nag training kayo?” I was taken aback – what was that about? I didn’t bother say anything; I just looked at him then took off.

Most of my friends know that I am never crabby in any race. The reason they call me Miss Congeniality is because I always see to it that I greet, hug, and do a high-five whenever I meet a runner friend along the way. I always motivate those I feel needs it even if I myself need motivation. That statement threw me off – I don’t think it is what I needed when I was so ready to give up. To you it was just a spur of the moment thing but I hope Gian next time be more sensitive. I accept your apology but then I also have to give you a piece of my mind… I know you are a very strong runner, but I guess you have to learn to be humble and be mindful of the things you say. I never doubted your capability. Indeed we trained… we trained hard because we know that we need it. We’re not elites but as what Iah said – EVEN THE BEST ATHLETES FAIL. NO AMOUNT OF PROPER TRAINING WILL PREPARE YOU FOR THE EXTERNAL FACTORS YOU FACE COME RACE DAY. I am not trying to make an issue or call attention to myself. I just thought you should know. Best of luck in your future races!

I passed the takbo.ph support station one last time before I finally turned right. Thank you so much friends for the ice cold pocari… BB, Maccoy, Gail, Cindy and the rest of the gang – Thanks so much!

The journey to the turn-around was uneventful except that I still want to walk… I took the last of my Gerber, the one they say that has extra kick for the added push. I have already consumed six and the last two is sort of not kicking in. I was on my way to the first flyover when I met BR, at first I thought he’s having a hard time but when he gave me a thumbs-up I knew he’s alright. I saw Macky next after that; the heat is really taking its toll and seeing the flyover made it worst…

I passed Tin along Buendia fly-over. I never knew that she was having a hard time already. I was actually hoping that we’ll run the last 5Km together since she always have that extra energy on the last 5Km.

I was happy to finally see the turn-around, but my legs suddenly felt heavier atop the Buendia fly-over. I am already slurring my prayer and I can’t seem to finish the Apostle’s Creed… I felt suddenly alone and the journey to the next fly-over is taking like forever… I also kept on glancing back hoping that I would see Tin or Iah, but they are nowhere in sight. That got me worried – what happened to my friends? It was blurry from then on… I really slowed down. I also ran out of Gatorade and there is no water station in sight. Godbless Jucel I saw him near Quirino. I remember he gave me something but I am not sure what it was – could be water or Gatorade. I really can’t remember…

It was along the Phil Navy headquarters when this guy with a 42Km race bib came to me and said “halika na, sabay tayo”. We were together intermittently until we reached the US Embassy. I so wanted to ask his name but I guess I was too tired to even speak. Another guy who was in black that looks like a tri-suit also told me “Let’s go, we’ll do 4:30, you will surely qualify” I can only shake my head and told him “wala na hindi na ako makakapasok 4:20 ako eh” then he said that’s ok you’ll still do sub5… Thank you to both of you! I can’t even remember your faces, but surely I will always remember that motivation.

I felt like crying from then on, not even the sight of the starting line could lift my spirit. Another runner egged me to run since the finish line is less than 500M away. I slow-jogged then increased the pace as I enter the finishing chute. Bing was the only person I saw during that time… I was hoping I’ll have a friend who would give me a hug, but nobody’s there. I clocked in at 4:38… I should be happy right? That was a sub 5, but at that point I was really disappointed with myself. I can only mutter “Sayang”…

I stayed under the scorching heat of the sun for ten minutes waiting for Tin and Iah… I only left when I saw Neil and Jerry. The first person I saw after that was Abby – I love the hug, sister! That was my first, then Luis…

Macky and I stayed at one of the tents with the other guys… I can’t keep still so I decided to go back and look for Tin and Iah, I was still outside when I saw my partner, Tin. She managed a wave. Then I saw Iah… both of them still managed a sub 5 despite the cramps, the injury, and dehydration… the two of you are so brave, you deserve my snappiest salute.

well done, Mr President!

 Generally, it was a good race, very challenging. To be honest, I really didn’t know what to expect. I am not saying I am over it, but I am getting there. My musings for the last five days has all been about Milo… I know I can do better; I will train to get better. Maybe next year I can finally use this title for my Milo entry… IT’S FINALS, BABY… SEE YOU IN DECEMBER!

To Team BR-P, Team TFC, and to Team UPLB Mountaineers – Thank you so much!

To Bald Runner, Ma’am R, and the Elites – Thank you po!

To Takbo.ph, Team Boring, Team CB, and the Adination Alabang led by Miss Nao – Maraming salamat!

We are Mortals: Part I

           I am writing this article at 0530H; it’s rather early, but you see I wanted so much to put all my thoughts in writing last night but seeing my kids and how cute they were on their pajamas – I postponed it and cuddled with them instead. How I missed them! Since they arrived from the province to finally stay with me, I have yet to spend my weekends with them. I could go on and on talking about my boys Lorenz and Micah but at this point let me share with you my Laguna de Bay Ultramarathon experience.

photo lifted from 2timothy, thank you, partner!

           Where it all began…

           I can’t recall the exact date when our anointed President for the Team Baldrunner- Professionals, Iah asked me to be their female runner in the event that we can come up with a team to join the Laguna de Bay Ultramarathon 200km Relay Race on May 1 & 2. Apparently, some of our classmates at the Team Bald Runner Speed Training Clinic are contemplating on creating a team. I said yes without even batting an eyelash 🙂 well, it looks exciting and a lot of fun!

           Without much fanfare we had teams! The first team which later was christened Lake Dashers is compose of Gerry, Randy, Mark, Tin, and Loo while our team the Flash Forward (Hear ye hear ye!) is compose of Iah, Macky, Carlo, Nam, and myself. How we came up with those team names, I don’t know hehehe it sounds good, right?

           Initially, we were told that there will be a best in uniform award. That started a friendly bet with the Lake Dashers. If we can’t beat those runners on the road then let our uniform/singlet shine on race day.  

            Iah literally labored on the design of our uniform and took it upon himself to calendar important dates as follows:

            April 16 – Last day of reg
           April 23 – Pre Marathon briefing
           May 1-2 – Day of race

           Well as you all know, we did register. The problem is we can’t find a common time for our team to practice/run together since we all have commitments and other activities. We also don’t have a concrete plan on how to do the race, we just wanted to have fun and of course to win the best in uniform award; but before we can even send this fab singlet  to the manufacturer the organizer decided to scrapped it and we’ll just be given a singlet. Goodbye, award!

           I wasn’t also able to attend the Pre-Marathon Briefing on April 23 because I had to leave for Pangasinan for a Medical Mission Project with my CD 231 class. Iah represented our team and Tin theirs. My heart was not yet on the race because I was really thinking and dealing on our impending “Lipat-Bahay”, my kids enrolment and transfer to another school, renovations, and all the other blahs; it was only when I got to read Tin’s blog on her recap regarding the briefing that it finally dawned on me that this is indeed serious. Part of it that gave me goose bumps was this:

“The hall was filled with all the strongest runners of this country (quoting from the host).  I know most of them, while some are obviously one just by looking at their built, some are not represented that day but they are in the list. And us – well – tanned and all, we still wouldn’t pass as one”

 Lifted from Tin’s entry on her blog www.2timothy.wordpress

           How’s that for recreational runners? To make it more exciting – there will be a cut-off time. Huwat!!!??? I am now on the verge of collapsing… Dear Lord! 89km for the first day for ten hours and 114km for the second day for 12hours! 

          Pwede pa ba mag back-out?

           Next page please…

HAPON Part II

Friday: Woke up energized and well-rested. We laced up our running shoes for our early morning run. We don’t have any route but since we weren’t able to visit the Eastern part on Thursday, we decided to go that way. Before we left the room, the girls decided that Elay will be the one to bring the camera so as to save the battery of Jean’s digicam.

            Tere: Elay, make sure na makuhanan mo ako ng picture ha kasi ilalagay ko sa blog ko at para may ebidensya na tumakbo ako sa Corregidor. Ayan kuhanan mo ako ng naka talikod. (No answer)

          I looked behind me and – Nada! No Elay and no Feivy in sight! It was just me and Jean… Goodbye documentation! I guess the two was left behind when Jean and I started to jog.

            The view was breath taking… my knees almost gave up when we reached the north entrance of the Malinta tunnel. Ang tarik naman nito! I can now feel the agony of the runners who took part in the Conquer Corregidor 10-miler last year. Whew!!! As we went further to the East, Jean and I tried to remember our history. We passed by the Filipino War Memorial but decided not to stop so as not to ruin our momentum; we just promised that we will see the sights on our way back. The view was just beautiful in that part… the tail of the Island is very visible and we had the best view of the Caballo Island.             

            I wanted to increase the pace, but worried that Jean may not be able to keep up with me so we ran slowly and just enjoyed the serenity of the place. Ang sarap lang lumanghap ng sariwang hangin, wala pang sasakyan, kami lang ang taong tumatakbo. We were also able to see monkeys along the road; some are even jumping from tree to tree.

           We continued to run farther because we were looking for the Lindley Airport since we saw a sign showing its direction earlier. The airport was found on the tip of the Eastern part which is very near the tail. The bonus when we reached that part was our discovery of the Mindanao Garden of Peace; this garden was realized through the efforts of the Anak Mindanao Party list and some other individuals and organizations. It is actually in honor of the victims of the Jabidah Massacre.

            It was in that area where you can have the best view of the Caballo Island – it was really a sight to behold. Sayang! We didn’t have a camera…

           We looked around for a while then decided to go back because it is getting hot. We were talking about what could have been and what could have happened if the war didn’t happen and so on and so forth… this one just stood out of my memory.

              Jean: Buti nalang pala ma’am wala pa tayo nung nagka gyera ano?    Ang hirap siguro nun.

             Tere: Oo nga kasi kung buhay na tayo nun baka na rape din tayo ng mga Hapon!

            We laughed so loud our laughter reverberated into the woods.

           We passed by the Filipino War memorial before heading to the transient facility where we were staying. We were wondering why Armando didn’t take us here, lack of time perhaps.

          It was a good run; I didn’t know how far we covered but a friend estimated it to be more or less 12k back and forth.

          We found Febs and Elay at the hammock near our room; nadala pala namin ang susi! We told them what we saw and made them inggit to the max 🙂  since we will leave at around 3pm, we asked Jasper, Jorge, and Den-Den (our very kind tour guides/friends) to please accompany us to explore some more. We then decided to go back to the East for picture-taking.

         Trekking brought us to the Malinta Tunnel where we explored the 1000bed hospital and most of the laterals… nandun ulit ang mga kamag-anak ni Casper. Instead of walking another 3-4km to reach Lindley and the Mindanao Garden of Peace, we were lucky to hitch a ride with Kuya Tony who was heading in that direction (Thank you, Kuya). Hmmmmmmm dumadami na ka-berks! After taking lots and lots of pictures we headed back to the Filipino War memorial for more pictures…

inside the filipino war memorial

           We then proceeded to the abandoned beach resort to swim, lunch, and buko. The beach was super nice… according to the boys the beach closed due to some management problem. Wasted resources, wasted beauty.

the beach resort...

          We stayed in the beach for another hour; in as much as we wanted to stay longer; we can’t since we have a boat to catch. The boat will bring us to Mariveles then we’ll take the bus from there to go back to Manila.

          The four of us had a great time… we went home tired but happy and full of memories. We also made a pact that we will be travel buddies from now on and vowed to go back to the Island in the not so distant future.

HAPON!

Monday: Was too stressed… I was hoping very hard that it will be my final presentation… and it was!!! Budget approved after five arduous hearing! That was a very TOUGH one. I have never been so stressed the way I was while working on it until its approval.

Tuesday: Was cramming to review for my final exam and to finish all my requirements for CD 202.

Wednesday: Met group mates at the CD Library to finalize the report and other individual turn-in. Went back to barracks very tired. I was so bent on sleeping only to find my room mates preparing for a trip. I don’t have any plans on leaving Manila for the duration of the Holy Week, but if I am not going to join them, it would mean home alone for the next four days… not a good idea. So after so much debate on where to go, we decided to just head off to Corregidor with a back-up plan to go anywhere if our Corregidor plan will not materialize.

Thursday:         LET THE ADVENTURE BEGIN…

            Since we were not able to make a reservation for our trip to the Island of C, the four of us (Moi, Jean, Febs, and Elay) left the barracks at 6am. We were the first ones to arrive only to be left behind due to the laxity of the personnel manning the reservation… Grrrrrr that’s inefficiency at its BEST! After so much discussion, we were told to wait for the last trip at 11am. With three hours to spare before we leave, we just decided to go to Baclaran and say a little prayer at the Redemptorist Church.

Elay, febs, me, and jean at the Suncruise waiting area

            After fifty years, we were told to go to the dock to wait for our ferry only to wait for another ten years! Medyo kumukulot na ang bangs ko… hay!

            This will be my third time to visit the Island, second for Elay, and first for Febs and Jean. We didn’t have any itinerary except for the guided tour; but I specifically asked them to please bring running attire since I am bent on exploring Corregidor by foot.

            We arrived at the Island at around 1330H; after the sumptuous buffet, off we went for the guided tour. So lucky that our tour guide is Armando (funny funny guy!) I am a sucker for history and war movies, so being here is really a treat. I am not just so happy hearing about the Japanese atrocities during world war 2 all over again. Seeing the ruins and learning some trivia about all the facilities in this area made me cringe… too much devastation.

turista?

           

ang mga naghahanap ng Hapon 🙂

            

            We weren’t able to run in the afternoon because the tour ended later than expected. We enjoyed it and very thankful to the American lady who became our unofficial photographer. She was very nice and kept telling us how photogenic we were 🙂

san si elay?

            Thursday evening was thrilling and a bit scary… we all know the history of the Island so it’s not really surprising if Casper’s clan is all over the place. I can’t see spirits (I am really glad I can’t) but I can somehow feel them. When darkness began to envelop us, I had a nagging feeling that somebody is staring at me or somebody is walking behind me. I didn’t initially told my companions about it but they felt I am becoming uneasy; so I blurted out what I have been feeling; screams ensued after; then we tried to make fun out of it by this conversation:

            Febs: naku ayan na ang mga Hapon!

            Tere: sira! Hindi lang Hapon mga yan, madami!

            Elay: hanapin nalang natin sila para masaya

            Jean: Ay ako hindi man ako takot, Ma’am

            Tere: pa rape ka nalang Febs pag lumitaw sila

            (Laughter)

            From where we were staying we went around South Beach then back to the Corregidor Inn to swim at the Pool. We briefly stayed at the beach and were planning to set-up a bonfire only to change our plans because of some distractions (lapitan ka ba naman ng mga lalaking malalaki ang tiyan!) yikes! Some folks asked us where we were heading and we always replied with this “Maglalakad-lakad lang po, naghahanap ng Hapon”.

            We called it a night at around 11pm with no Hapon in sight…

            TO BE CONTINUED…

The year that is about to end…

I wasn’t able to write anything about the celebrity run because I was too pre-occupied with so many things. I had classes to attend, work to finish, mommy duties, and so on and so forth.

I have always been vocal that the celebrity run will be my redemption from the official result of Botak… I thought I could do it, I have prepared for it and it has been my primary motivation since I saw the race result.

Well, it didn’t happen. I was short by two minutes. I thought I could sprint to the finish line, but I wasn’t able to… I wanted to say that I had a hard time at the Mckinley hill and the right shin acted up but I guess it will only mean I am making excuses.

I just have to do better next time… there will be more races to run. I am just glad I haven’t experienced serious injuries.

That week also proved to be very stressful since we had yearend preparations, yearend reports, Christmas parties… the tasks are way above my head!

My only respite was the Girls Night Out with the ladies of Takbo.ph on Dec 22, 2009 at the Guava restaurant in Serendra. It was a fun-filled night. I had a great time even if I had to go home early due to some unavoidable circumstance.  Thank you, Ladies! Let’s do it again 🙂

black and white

 

prettyness 🙂

I was also supposed to join LSD at the University of the Philippines on December 24… I had to cancel because I had work to do. I literally sulked the whole day and hurled dagger looks at the cubicle adjacent to mine… if looks could kill, I’d be a convict by now.

Christmas Eve was spent attending the field mass at the Grandstand… I felt sad since I was all alone. I cried during the homily because it was all about family – I miss Lorenz and Micah. I miss my sister too…

Happy Holidays, Everyone!

If Christmas Eve was a bit gloomy, I had a wonderful time on Christmas Day. I decided to join Q, Boss Jinoe, and Ace for a Run at the Ayala Triangle. We had fun. That day became one of my most favorite Christmas Day celebrations. Thanks to the three of you!

see? we had fun 🙂

Ace, Me, Q, and Boss Jinoe

I had a full schedule on Dec 26 onwards… I didn’t run for four days and I traveled to Tuguegarao to attend a wedding. It was a bit deadly since I had to run 32k for the Rizal Day run.

had to travel 12hours by land to be with them 🙂

 

 I had a great and tiring week prior to Rizal Day run…

Next page please… 🙂

KM48

          It’s been exactly a week when friends, lots of attitude and will power brought me to KM48. It would have been KM56, but that distance is the farthest that my legs and body can take.

          I never thought that I could go that far since the longest distance that I ever did since I started going gaga over running is 10k. My primary reason for not signing up for Corregidor was that I am not yet ready for a 10miler.

          Honestly, I guess I got carried away when some guys over at SB were talking about it. I don’t know what convinced me to join; I was actually having second thoughts a few days before December 6, I wanted to backed out – nakahiyaan ko nalang 🙂

          So on December 6, 2009, me and some peeps over at takbo.ph negotiated KM0-56 while some of the runners that we know were pounding the streets of Singapore, conquering Corregidor, and running the blues at the Ateneo.  

i felt pretty surrounded by good looking men hihihi

          Coach Titus didn’t stop me from joining the LSD  he just wished me luck when i told him about it and if my memory serves me right, i actually told him that i will just be doing 20K. I just got a dose of “sermon” when he came over for that deep tissue massage hehehe Thanks so much, Coach! Sorry ka nalang nadagdagan crazy students mo.

          I learned so much during that LSD… I will not be dwelling much on the details of the run, the places that we passed, or how crazy I felt as we were running in the wee hours of the morning  while most of the people we saw on the road were either going home from gimmicks or from work.

          One thing that I would like to mention here however is the stench that greeted my nostrils when we passed through several rivers going to our direction which is tagaytay ( rivers nga ba yung mga yun?) I don’t know where to compare the smell, but i really didn’t like it 🙂

          We started in Luneta and from there we ran to the direction of Baclaran… another realization hit me while passing through Roxas Blvd until we reached the vicinity of Heritage Hotel. How lucky I am to have a home and a bed… My heart bled seeing many people from all ages sleeping at the sidewalk. It made me appreciate the things that I have which I usually take for granted. All I wanted during that time was to run, I didn’t realize that it would be an avenue of internalization and self actualization. 

          I am also glad that I went through that experience with the people who made me appreciate running even more. Some of them were the very first friends I made over at SB; the rest I only met during the LSD, but they were just awesome! Thanks peeps! you know who you are 🙂 this may sound cliche but i wouldn’t have done it without all of you. 

ngiting ngiti pa bago pumunta ng luneta 🙂

smiling faces 🙂

di pa naman namin kakulay ang mga Kenyan hehehe

           Another good thing about LSD is you get to appreciate mundane things… The egg and tuna sandwiches of Doct and Junar are the best sandwiches or the banana that Gab brought was sweeter than any banana that I ever tasted. Suddenly you realized that the road you are pounding is better than the last time you were there and that it is now properly lighted, and when you are already physically spent, a drop of water is like a taste of heaven…  

lack of sleep finally took its toll...

          Personally, I was ok the first twenty kilometers or so… i felt strong despite the fact that I wasn’t able to sleep the day before. There were lots of food and stories in every pit-stop, ’twas like a picnic! The succeeding kilometers however is a silent battle within; I started to question why I am there or why am I doing such. I quietly screamed at trees and the numerous electric posts along the road 🙂 I talked to myself and kept thinking about the words of BR – TRY TO GO BEYOND YOUR LIMITS – 25k was my limit, the distance I covered was my MAX!

i looked like a construction worker! had to force Doct to take this pic hehehe

           I was so ready to quit when we reached KM37, but Junar convinced me to continue with a promise that we will have more walk breaks. We actually tried the Galloway method of 3:1 but with the sun blazing from the horizon we walked almost 3kms before we decided to jog then walk again.  

          It was I guess somewhere in Silang when somebody gave us a Tiger Gatorade; that was so kind of you, Jerry! Thank you so much! That was such a relief…

           I wanted so much to finish 56Km, but when I reached KM48 and sat that was the end for me; Gab sealed the deal when he told me that “Huwag mo ng pilitin, malayo na ang natakbo mo”. I was so tired and hungry. I am not sure if I am still coherent after that; I was lost in my own thoughts until we reached Tagaytay junction where the rest of the guys were waiting.

          Finally at a little past 12NN, Mark arrived. I don’t know how he felt but I am sure he was relieved to finally reached KM56. Glenn, Gab, Sam, Rod, and Doct followed a little later. Congrats, guys!

lots and lots of pogi points for you!

Finally…

tired but happy

          I still feel the bodily effects of my 48KM finish… I accumulated 28Kms after that but I still feel a little discomfort in my mid-sole (tama ba yung term?) Will i do it again? Without batting an eyelash (Sowee, Coach hehehe)

Banditry at it’s Finest

I wasn’t able to register for the NB Race since I was out of town when the race was supposed to be held; but due to Typhoon Ondoy that wreaked havoc across the Metro, the race was re-scheduled at a later date.

My involvement in this race was another first for me. Since I am a newbie on the blog and running scene, visitors may just get tired reading about my “firsts”. Please put up with me since my primary motivation in creating this page is to chronicle my running – hence the firsts 🙂

I met Ley on November 22, 2009 during the Botak Paabilisan Road Race. He run 15K while I did the 10K where I finished 54:48 (unofficial). I was so “high” during that time so I volunteered to be his pacer for the NB Run because he wants to have a sub60 finish. I guess everybody is already aware that officially, my time during the Botak race is 1:03:29. I really felt bad after learning of the published official time, honestly, I was embarrassed – I was overconfident; I posted my unofficial result on my FB account, told friends, wrote about it on the blog etc… I was disheartened, yes, but it only fueled my desire to do better next time.

I can’t bully anybody in the office to bring me to the race area, so I asked Doc Topher if I can possibly hitch a ride; he agreed so I diligently waited for him in front of Camp Crame lest he changed his mind 🙂 Thank you, DocT!

We arrived early at BHS; that gave me more time to warm up and say hello to more people. I was tense and kept thinking that I may not be able to keep up with the task at hand… I said a little prayer then off I went to the starting shoot with Doc Marvs, Que, and Marga hoping that I will be able to inched my way without being noticed (sorry ka nalang, matalas ang mata ng checker hehehe) I then waited for Ley after the starting line…

We started nicely, I kept up with his pace; Ley is pretty strong. He was determined. I thought it was an easy route until we reached Mckinley… the uphill was a killer. I can’t remember who’s motivating who when we reached that area, but suffice to say that we both negotiated the hill without walking. The gradual elevation at the area of Essensa is another story on our way back. It’s just so hard to negotiate such when you are already spent.

We slowly increased our pace after the stoplight, we both regained our strength and I am pretty sure that Ley will have a sub60 finish. I was the persistent cheerer 500meters to the finish line. I was shouting Ley “bilis konti nalang, malapit na” over and over again until he reached the finish line. Ley finished the race in 57:57!

It was an awesome race… I choked back tears as I gave him a hug at the finish line.

Congrats, Ley! You did it with flying colors…

The race day was very significant. Apart from being a first time bandit, it was also during that Sunday where I met more or less thirty (30) energetic and super friendly takbo.ph members (you are awesome, guys!)

the picture was lifted from the takbo.ph website

the medals!

I was glad Ley gave me the chance to be his Bandit… that day proved to be one of the shining moments of my crazy running life 🙂  Thanks so much, friend! It meant a lot to me…

The Sweet Finish to a New PR :-)

          I didn’t have plans on registering for the Botak Paa-Bilisan Road Race Series since I initially registered for the Race and Shine. My intention was to join any race at a later date so I can really prepare because I wish for a better time than Timex.

          My Security Officer encouraged me to join given that my not so giant friend, Cris will also be running the 10k while he will go for the 15k. I caved in knowing that I will not be paying for my registration fee 🙂 

me and the not so giant, Cris!

          The week leading to the race was hectic. I had so many things to attend too and somebody is always making fun of my running; he even went as far as telling me that running will decrease one’s libido! Duh!!!  

          The good thing about that week was that I was able to attend all of my scheduled speed training despite my busy schedule. The drills are now getting harder but I am getting used to it. I also love the fact that I am now slowly developing good rapport with the other runners under Coach Titus. I like Ultra, I feel so athletic every time I’m there 🙂  

          I looked forward to race day because I will be meeting more SB regulars. Me, Angel, Junar, and the others agreed to meet at the starting line. The Urbanathlon and the Fit and Right will also be held on the same day so I expect that I will be meeting just a few of the takbo.ph peeps after the race.

si junar mukhang fresh, kami mukhang mga sabog hehehe

           I woke up at 0430 on race day…  I was well-rested (yay!) as per registration form, gun start for all race category will be 0600. I decided to go there early so I’ll have time to deposit my stuff then look for my companions.

          I was at BHS at around 0520. I saw friends from the former Unit. I learned that all of them will be running 15k (wow!) I also saw familiar faces from the Army. Hmmmmmm dumadami na pala kami 🙂 

         I met Angel and the gang a few minutes before the gun start. I was the only one running the 10k. Angel, Jix, Ambo, Noel, and Ley is running the 15k. Junar is Ley’s pacer.

the starting line...

          Initially, we were in front of that pack as per Angel’s liking 🙂 Good thing we were able to convince him to transfer in the middle because we might be crushed upon gun start. The 1ok and 15k runners were released at the same time so we were all together at the starting line. 

          The race started 10 minutes early. I was actually frantic because i don’t know the route, but decided that I will just follow those who are wearing orange race bib’s. 

            I didn’t really hear the gun start except for Jix who yelled “una na ako sa inyo!” That guy is mamaw 🙂 Since I am more comfortable doing the negative split, I didn’t pace with the rest of the guys. We just agreed to see each other at the finish line.

           I had a good start; I started to increase my speed before reaching the  stop light at the corner of Mckinley.  It was along Essensa when I saw Tin and decided to pace with her. I was crazy for doing that since I am no match to her pace but I held on until the 5th. I had to slow down going to the 6th because  I suddenly felt a shooting pain on the right upper quadrant of my stomach. It was also about that time when I saw the first water station… I was about to grab a gatorade when the marshall shouted “may lason yan, sa Urbanathlon yan”! Ngek! Where’s the spirit of sharing?!

          I was still strong despite the pain so I just continued running… walking was never an option. I was still far from the turn around when I saw Jix and the other 15k runners (pabalik na sila papunta palang ako hahahaha).

          I don’t know what happened but the pain disappeared a few minutes after I turned right to lawton avenue. It was an steady pace for me after that. It was also along this route where I saw Markhernz, Doct, Mac, and Pojie who participated in the Urbanathlon. 

           It was also near Essensa when I passed some runners that I know. I was getting faster and I thought that if I continued with such pace I might just improve my Timex finish.

          The signs along the way were confusing so I just tried to focus on the runners in front of me. I was just worried that I might miss the sign for the 10k route. I almost did actually; i slowed down to ask the marshall on the stop light before turning right to the direction of the finish line, but she was not answering me. I even asked twice until one girl yelled back and said “oo kumanan ka na”! Foolish marshall, I almost followed the 15k runners!        

           Worried that i wasted precious time in that area, I sprinted as fast as I could to the finish line… and yes I improved my Timex time! My unofficial time was 54:48… 

           It was exhilarating! I was also surprised that my finishers certificate was handed to me at the end of the finisher’s shoot. Nice! No long lines for me there 🙂

           My role after that was handing water and cheering for my friends who ran the 15K.

          Another race… another achievement… 

          Post race:   Me and the guys decided to have breakfast at Mcdo. It was there where we saw Doc Marvs, Que, Julie, Lally, and Joyce. Apart from Doc Marvs whom I met at the Army pool, it was my first meeting with the rest of the gang. It was fun!

           In closing… Nice meeting you guys and congrats Joyce!