Race Report: Mt Sembrano 32K Trail Run

18 05 2015

Two weeks before the race, the Race Director and friend of mine, Bong Delos Angeles, sent me a message telling me that I am invited to join the 2nd edition of this race which he is organizing. I told him that I will try my best to join the race if I have the time to return to Manila after my 1st Mt Tapulao Trail Run which is held the day before this race.

One week before the Mt Tapulao Trail Run, I decided to shorten the course from 46K to 36K so that I can have the time to return to Manila, coming from Barangay Barangay Dampay Salaza, Palauig, Zambales and spend the night in Manila before proceeding to the Starting Area which is located in Barangay Malaya, Pililla, Rizal.

The plan was not to race in this race because I had a 20K easy run to the peak of Mt Tapulao the day before the race. I was following a training plan that called for a “back-to-back” Long Runs on the said weekend and it was a good reason to join this race to comply with the training program.

I arrived in Manila on the night of Friday coming from Zambales and I knew that I will have a limited time to sleep as it was my first time to go to Pililla, Rizal and look for the starting area. I found out that the way to Pililla, Rizal is the same way that goes to the starting area of my Tanay 50K Run. I missed the turn that goes to the town of Pililla and I had to go back after finding out that I got lost. It was a bad sign!

As soon as I arrived at the Starting Area in the Multi-Purpose Covered Court of Barangay Malaya, I could see the runners ready for the start of the race. The race has two distance categories: 15K and 30K. The 15K distance category is for those “newbies” in trail running and other local running “celebrities”. I opted to join the longer course and expected to be “fried” under the heat of the sun!

First Mile Of The Race

First Mile Of The Race

The 30K distance started ahead of the 15K runners and I was positioned at the back of the pack as one of the last runners. The route was simply going on easterly direction from the Barangay Hall and it was a paved road going to the trailhead which is a straight assault trail to the peak of the mountain which is ultimately the Mt Sembrano. From the trailhead, it was a single-track trail ascending at a very steep grade. I just simply hiked on this trail, trying to follow the runner in front of me. Just when I was halfway to the first peak of the mountain, the leading runner of the 15K distance category were already on my back trying to pass me along the trail. I was impressed with the 15K runners as they were able to maintain their pace despite the steepness of the trail. I had to give way for them and some of them are my friends and runner-finishers in my previous races.

I decided to use hand-held water bottles on each of my hands instead of using my hydration vest with bottle pockets on both sides of my chest. It was my first time to use my TNF Handheld bottles in a trail running race which I bought sometime in 2009. I had no problem using them as I was using my cycling gloves which provided lightness on the way I was gripping them. I could still use my fingers and palms/hands in holding the rocks on those very steep portions of the trail.

I did not join the race to compete but to have a “back-to-back” long runs for the weekend. My goal was to finish the distance of 30 kilometers within the cut-off time; try & test my apparel/shoes; and find out if I can withstand using two hand-held bottles for the distance.

Going To The Peak

Going To The Peak

Once I reached the first peak, I had to refill my water bottles in an Aid Station and I could see a beautiful scenery all around me. The mountain is covered with cogon grass with the Laguna De Bay on the West; the Windmills of Bugarin on the North; the Mt Sembrano Peak on the East; and more cogon grasses on the South. I could see already runners coming from the peak as well as the runners in front of me going to the peak. It’s time to move and reach the peak.

Looking at the elevation profile of the whole course, the peak is about 700+ meters above sea level with a cumulative distance of 7 kilometers. It looks like my “Brown Mountain” playground but with a shorter distance to the peak of the mountain. From the peak, the course is descending with few hills and runnable ascents. But it is the heat of the sun that will definitely slow down the runners.

It took me a few seconds to stay at the peak of the mountain just to appreciate what is all around the area and I was on my way to the first peak. As I went down, I was surprised to see more runners along the way and I suspect that they could be the 15K runners. I was in the company of newly-promoted Lt Colonel Ron Yllana since the time we ascended the first peak of the mountain. He was always behind me trying to keep his pace with mine. At least, I have somebody to talk to along the course. As we went down to a lower portion of the mountain, we were able to be in touch with the other runners until we reached a junction where a tent and two marshals are located.

Coming Down From The Peak

Coming Down From The Peak

The marshals said that the 30K runners had to take the trail on the right while the 15K runners had to take the trail on the left as they are going back to the starting area. Ron and I took the trail on the right and we started to go down along the trail. After about one kilometer, we started to meet some runners asking us for directions and we answered, “just follow the yellow marker”. More runners were going up the trail while we were going down and we suspect that something was wrong. Not until we saw the Race Director telling us that we missed a turn so that we should be proceeding to Barangay Bugarin which is a cluster oh houses in the middle of some hills and trees with the windmills from a distance of about 7-8 kilometers.

Retracing back to the right trail for more than one kilometer of ascent with the heat of the sun on top of our heads is very frustrating. But the race (or LSD) must go no matter what or whether I will be last in this race. There was no need to complain or “whine” as the Race Director was so apologetic when he showed to us the correct way. It was our first time to see the trunks of trees that were placed across the trail to indicate that we have to veer right to a steep descending trail with yellow ribbons on it. I hope there should be more signs leading to this point and within this sharp turn. Ron & I and the rest of the runners behind us were puzzled why we were led to trail that goes to the Finish Line. At this point, my Garmin Watch registered a distance of 8 miles (12 kilometers) to include our “lost moments” of about 2.5 kilometers!

Elevation Profile On The First Half

Elevation Profile On The First Half

It was time to be back in business. Once we reached the wide dirt road that leads to Bugarin, I took a 10-second rest under a tree, took one of my GU Gels, drank my water, and took some deep breaths while looking at the far distant Bugarin. I said to myself, this will be a mental game! I have to give a “trick” to my brain and finish this race! Think Positive!!!

It’s time to count my steps and strides and power walk on the ascending portions while trying to hydrate myself. It was a boring and repetitive mental game but I would gain distance. I just let my Inov8 Trailroc Trail Shoes and my legs work on their own. Drink water alternately from my water bottles and try to maintain my pace. Ron and I would joined by another runner, Xcel Halog who is also a runner from Subic and who happens to know my playground. The three of us would be together as we got nearer to the next Aid Station.

As soon as we reached the Aid Station, I removed my cap and my buff and placed them inside an ice chest filled with ice water. Ate some ice-cold packed fresh fruits and hydrated myself with water and bottled sweet drinks. A lady volunteer at the Aid Station asked me if I am the Bald Runner and I said, Yes! She told me that almost all the runners that passed on the said Aid Station were asking if I passed already at the said point. The lady could not answer them as she would reply to the runners that she does not know the Bald Runner. I just smiled at her as these runners were on a “panic mode” if I will be passing them or will be on their backs trying to catch them.

One Of The Last Runners After Gun Start (Using Two Hand-held Bottles)

One Of The Last Runners After Gun Start (Using Two Hand-held Bottles)

We left the Aid Station refreshed and we were still in a fighting mode! We finally reached the turn-around point in Bugarin and I ate some food and fruits. After refilling our bottles, we were back on the course and I mentally programmed myself not to stop for a long time in my rest breaks. I just hope my two other running companions will be able to cope up with my pace. We did not mind the hot and humid conditions of the day as the trail was exposed to the heat of the sun. We were focused to finish the race and try to do the best we can!

It was unnecessary to force my body to a faster pace as this race was treated as a long run. My strides are very short but quick which I am accustomed to in my daily training runs in my playground. I have to take care of my body and made sure that I did not have any encounter with any injury along the way. I always think to relax my body while running and let my gluteus muscles do their work in the ascending parts of the route.

At The Finish Area

At The Finish Area

My nutrition played a key role on this part of the route despite the high temperature of the day. I mixed two GU Gel Packs in my water-filled hand-held bottle and filled my other bottle with water. I would drink my hydration from these two bottles, alternately and I was able to maintain my pace all the way to the finish line. The ice-cold fresh fruit packs served at the last Aid Station have also contributed in my nutrition needs to include my Stinger Waffle which I carried in my UD Pocket Belt.

As I got nearer to the Finish Line, along a descending paved road which is named as “Road Less Traveled”, I could sense that I was already running alone. Since I don’t have the habit of looking who is behind me, I kept on focusing on the road ahead and continuously being aware of what is happening to my body ( breathing, swinging of arms, lifting of my feet, correct body posture/running form, and relaxed pacing) making sure that there is no pain on my legs and my body.

The SMART people gave me a cold water to douse my head and a runner ahead of me offered a cold cola drinks from a convenience store along the road which I declined. I stopped when I saw a water coming out from a pipe and I slowed down thereafter to allow the said runner (from the store) to pass me on the last kilometer of the race. The runner even asked me to have a “selfie” with him as I allowed him to do so. From there, I told him to finish the race ahead of me.

I finished the race in 6:54+ hours with a smiling face!

Congratulations to Dabobong Delos Angeles and his MGM Team for organizing this event. Definitely, I will be back next year to improve my time in this event.

Finishing The Race With A Smile

Finishing The Race With A Smile





Official Result: 9th Tagaytay To Nasugbu 50K Ultra Marathon Race

11 05 2015

9th PAU’s Tagaytay To Nasugbu 50K Ultra Marathon Race 

Starting Area: Picnic Grove, Tagaytay City

Starting Time: 4:00 AM May 9, 2015

Finish Line: PETRON GAS Station, Nasugbu, Batangas

Cut-Off Time: 9 Hours/1:00 PM May 9, 2015

Number Of Starters: 207

Number Of Finishers: 201

Percentage Of Finish: 97.1%

RANK

NAME

TIME (Hrs)

1

Andy Pope (Overall Champion) 3:57:16

2

Jeff Suazo (1st Runner-Up, Overall) 4:17:19

3

Armando Olan (2nd Runner-Up, Overall) 4:24:34

4

Jerico Resurreccion 4:31:10

5

Raffy Barolo 4:40:30

6

Simon Pavel Miranda 4:44:55

7

Jason Basa 4:47:35

8

Rogelio Puzon 4:49:36

9

Kristian Merilles 4:52:34

10

Darrell Sicam 5:08:57

11

Ildebrando Yap 5:10:01

12

Jp Navarrete 5:10:35

13

Errol Osea 5:12:11

14

Charles Villanueva 5:13:50

15

Icar Hiponia (Champion, Female) 5:15:22

16

Alexander Sia 5:27:15

17

Kelly Castro 5:27:41

18

Jerome Caasi 5:35:15

19

Ronnel Valero 5:39:38

20

Mani Toraja 5:39:56

21

Gil Brazil 5:41:31

22

Joel Chua 5:41:42

23

Rodrigo Losabia 5:43:55

24

Arjie Golimlim 5:44:50

25

Jon Mark Pagatpatan 5:49:01

26

Harold Kimm Isaguirre 5:49:19

27

Richard Gano 5:50:18

28

Romhel Biscarra 5:50:45

29

Fiel Laurence Violete 5:52:36

30

Fernando Talosig 5:54:03

31

Edd Sangalang 5:54:28

32

Richard Ryan Rentillo 5:55:49

33

Roselle Abajo (1st Runner-Up, Female) 5:56:05

34

Randy Miranda 5:56:14

35

Rolan Cera 5:57:19

36

Bienvenido Alcala 5:58:08

37

Jonathan Banaag 5:58:12

38

Locindo Cruz 6:00:23

39

Fer De Leon 6:00:54

40

Desmond Carlos 6:02:25

41

Eden Pagsolingan 6:06:46

42

Fred Orca 6:10:05

43

Ruben Chiong 6:12:52

44

Michael Angelo Canopio 6:13:36

45

Irrol Novenario 6:14:27

46

Rose Betonio (2nd Runner-Up, Female) 6:15:10

47

Sheryll Quimosing (Female) 6:15:12

48

Cesar Dimatatac 6:17:20

49

Benjarde Cuales 6:18:05

50

 Raymund Tuazon 6:18:45

51

Gammy Tayao 6:20:17

52

Jim Taguiang 6:24:19

53

Eduardo Magpoc 6:25:10

54

Peter Canlas 6:25:38

55

Cristopher Magdangal 6:25:48

56

Ricardo Gregorio 6:25:56

57

Argie De Aro 6:27:04

58

Cherry Jardiniano (Female) 6:27:45

59

Fernando Gabriel 6:28:00

60

Theresa Amansec (Female) 6:29:00

61

Zaldo Gijapon 6:29:33

62

Felix Mariquina 6:29:45

63

Loben Macairan 6:29:56

64

Virgilio Belen Jr 6:30:11

65

Myla Santos Ambrocio (Female) 6:30:20

66

Vincent Allan Pimentel 6:30:34

67

Carmela Lim (Female) 6:30:41

68

Amiel Casanova 6:30:53

69

Frederick Penalosa 6:31:10

70

Mark Tayana 6:31:31

71

Bong Anastacio 6:31:45

72

Flynn Longno 6:36:17

73

Rolando Bicao 6:36:19

74

Nicolas Diaz 6:36:24

75

Robert Pacis 6:36:27

76

Ella Camatog (Female) 6:36:32

77

Melvin Cruz 6:36:35

78

Marlene Doneza (Female) 6:36:41

79

Jose Ramizares 6:36:46

80

Ronaldo Santos 6:36:53

81

Julius Villegas 6:37:20

82

El Portillo 6:38:32

83

Remy Caasi 6:42:17

84

Rodel Castillo 6:43:28

85

Eugene Mendoza 6:44:20

86

Chiara Tolentino (Female) 6:44:45

87

Rolly Cuales 6:44:56

88

Victor Rodriguez 6:45:30

89

Rogelio Palma 6:45:48

90

Renelle Manansala 6:46:22

91

Hermie Saludes 6:46:40

92

Raymond Dongeto 6:46:46

93

Ross Lim 6:46:55

94

Oliver Cavinta 6:47:28

95

Delfin Opena 6:47:52

96

Marlon Saracho 6:48:23

97

Mark Sidamon 6:48:40

98

Jerard Asperin 6:48:46

99

Joseph Serrano 6:48:53

100

Isidro Manuel 6:49:21

101

Emerson Salvador 6:49:33

102

Rhett Del Rosario (Female) 6:49:42

103

Glenn Rosales 6:49:50

104

Joy Eden (Female) 6:50:11

105

Meldrid Patam (Female) 6:50:23

106

Joy Tomboc (Female) 6:50:34

107

Almer Gutierrez 6:50:46

108

Mara Melanie Perez (Female) 6:50:55

109

Bryane Mamaril 6:50:59

110

Anthony Pelera 6:51:14

111

Jayzon Vallero 6:51:21

112

ronald Raga 6:51:27

113

Hernan John Marasigan 6:51:33

114

Geoffrey Cajigal 6:51:40

115

Jun Dragon Sia 6:51:45

116

Maricris David (Female) 6:52:10

117

Efren Olpindo 6:52:30

118

Marvie Reyes 6:52:33

119

Allan Allagao 6:52:55

120

Leonora Ealdama (Female) 6:54:20

121

Marie Grace Perez (Female) 6:55:32

122

Ali Sapitan 7:09:43

123

Rimberto Del Rosario 7:10:11

124

Nellie Ogsimer (Female) 7:11:32

125

Glenn Terania 7:12:29

126

Dhannie Tan 7:12:33

127

Pia Ballesteros (Female) 7:12:40

128

Eda Maningat (Female) 7:13:53

129

Oliver Madanao 7:13:59

130

Prancer Antor 7:14:35

131

Gil Zuniga 7:15:13

132

Jessa Bardiago (Female) 7:17:59

133

Kathleen Pinero (Female) 7:18:41

134

Aries Cezar Portugal 7:19:12

135

Allan Johnson 7:19:42

136

Chester Selisana 7:20:02

137

John Robas 7:21:01

138

Bernard Velasco 7:21:33

139

Leemar Santos 7:21:50

140

Elsie Quitos (Female) 7:23:45

141

May Ann Cubis (Female) 7:25:37

142

Dan Panganiban 7:27:01

143

Rolando Ramirez Jr 7:27:09

144

Kendrick Asanion 7:29:04

145

Reynan Patam 7:34:09

146

Ferdinand Banite 7:34:18

147

Renato Arce 7:35:47

148

Roni Turla 7:37:34

149

Ricardo Roxas 7:37:42

150

Florydette Cuales 7:37:52

151

Josephine Amoguis (Female) 7:38:21

152

Gene Parchamento 7:38:49

153

Arbie Tolentino 7:39:11

154

Alexander Tumbaga 7:39:40

155

DM Padilla 7:39:45

156

Let De Guzman (Female) 7:39:52

157

Jordan De Guzman 7:40:15

158

Fe Manuel (Female) 7:40:28

159

Lourdes Maghuyop (Female) 7:40:41

160

Mai David (Female) 7:41:15

161

Dexter David 7:41:20

162

Tristan David 7:41:26

163

Christian Garcia 7:41:30

164

Jose Antonio Austria 7:41:33

165

Merwin Torres 7:41:35

166

Ener Calbang 7:52:11

167

Isagani Zuniga 7:52:36

168

Leida White (Female) 7:52:49

169

Raquel Tan 7:53:29

170

Jeffrey Conocido 7:53:44

171

Emma Libunao (Female) 7:53:55

172

Grace Mendoza (Female) 7:54:21

173

Joselito Dela Cruz 7:54:36

174

Rhaian Isip 7:54:48

175

Anthony Pimentel 7:55:09

176

Jose Canete Jr 7:55:27

177

Johvic Unciano 7:56:03

178

Rodel Saltino 7:56:20

179

Jamil Escober 7:56:48

180

Ien Andrew 7:56:57

181

Bueno Reymond 7:57:33

182

Mark Leonard Partoza 7:58:20

183

Simon Roy 7:58:46

184

Gilbert Balid 8:01:33

185

Juan Crisanto Cunanan 8:05:41

186

Jico Blas 8:10:53

187

Jarold Sambo 8:13:10

188

Allenstein Co 8:14:20

189

Elordino Piodos 8:16:03

190

Manuel Johnson Balancio III 8:18:08

191

Benedict Santiago 8:18:40

192

Jinky Yray (Female) 8:19:57

193

Dennis Matias 8:20:09

194

Cristina Aldaya (Female) 8:21:16

195

Raymond Nable 8:22:11

196

Genie Pagcu (Female) 8:22:35

197

Sherylle Marie Guiyab 8:31:01

198

Jon Ogsimer 8:31:35

199

Danny Reyes 8:42:51

200

Wel Galang 8:50:08

201

Fernando Mendoza 8:59:22

Congratulations To All The Finishers!

Group Picture @ Starting Area

Group Picture @ Starting Area





Vertical Distance

5 05 2015

In Mountain Trail Running, everything is about the Total Vertical Distance or Total Gain In Elevation for the whole course or distance that should be the main considering factor to be able to train and prepare in order to finish a certain ultra trail race.

Starting this year, I’ve been particularly interested on the total vertical distance or total gain in elevation in most of my training runs. This interest of mine had been based from an advise or suggestion from ultra trail internet resources and from two different bloggers who are also ultra trail runners and coaches. According to such advise, if the total trail distance of the course is 100K and the total elevation distance or total vertical gain is 15,000 feet, you have to divide the total gain distance by 10 in order to find out the total elevation gain for every 10K distance. By applying the formula from the said 100K course, your total elevation gain for a 10K distance should be 1,500 feet.

Simply put, if you intend to run a distance of 10K in your training, your total elevation gain should be 1,500 feet or 500 meters! If you want to have a LSD trail run for 20 kilometers, obviously, your total elevation gain should be doubled to 3,000 feet or 1,000 meters.

If you are not distance conscious and you record your runs by the time you spent on your runs or training, you can also consider your time in relation to the total gain of elevation you have covered. For example, if a 100K trail course has a cut-off time of 15 hours with a course total elevation gain of 15,000 feet, you have to divide 15 from the total elevation gain for you to have the minimum elevation gain that you should have covered for a period of one hour. Applying it on the example, you must be able to cover a vertical distance of 1,000 feet for every hour of your training run.

Because of this advise, I looked for a place where I could train for the Trans Lantau 100K Trail Run in Hongkong which has a total elevation gain of 18,000+ feet. I must have a trail running course that satisfies a total elevation gain of 1,800+ feet for every 10K distance! My Playgrounds “Alpha & Bravo” barely passed the test but I wanted a steeper trail to force my knees and gluteus muscles to be engaged more during the run. The once neglected “Brown Mountain” came into my mind and I asked my training partner, Dannin, to clean the trails with the help of the locals living thereat. In a “test run and hike” after the trail was established, I was happy about the results! At 4 miles (6.4 kilometers), my GPS watch registered 2,000 feet in total elevation gain and I have not reached the peak of the mountain yet! This is great!

The peak of the mountain is almost 1,800 feet or almost 600 meters with a distance of almost 5 miles (8 kilometers) from the point where I usually start my run. The total elevation gain once I reach the peak is almost 2,500 feet! I said to myself, this place is more than what I’ve been looking for. My runs in the “Brown Mountain” started as a Run & Hike To The Peak & Back and for a short period of time until my legs had been accustomed to the elevation. Dannin and I would take a break on the last one-third of the ascent until we were able to have a non-stop ascent to the peak of the mountain.

Our longer runs would be to traverse the mountain and have our turn-around at the other side of the mountain. I call this particular course as our “Yo-Yo” course where we have to reach the peak again once we go back from our turn-around point on the other side of the mountain and back to the place where we started. The “Yo-Yo” course would give us a total distance of 14 miles (22.4 kilometers) and a total elevation gain of 4,200+ feet or almost 1,400 meters. Our average finish time is 5.5 hours!

I may not be faster on my speed runs but my endurance in tackling more challenging and steeper slopes of mountains had improved tremendously. Finishing the TransLantau 100K Trail Run without any pain, “issues” or injury would proved that such advise on considering the Total Elevation Gain as one of the most important factors in trail running’s successful finish is a very valid and effective training tool.

As a Race Director of Running Events, it is also advisable that in order to plan for a trail running event and have it offered to the running public, the total elevation gain should also be considered. As a suggestion, if one has the intention of coming up with a trail running event, make sure that the minimum total elevation gain in a 10k distance should be at least, 1,200 feet or 400 meters. Anything that is less than the said numbers are good for the “newbies” in trail running. However, if the vertical distance of a certain course is more than the suggested 1,200 feet or 400 meters in every 10K distance, then it would be best if you have it considered as a trail running course which could earn some points for the finishers to join the UTMB or in other international trail running events.

Ascending/Descending Trails

Ascending/Descending Mountain Trails





Official Result: 1st Mt Tapulao Trail Run

25 04 2015

1st Mt Tapulao 36K Trail Run (Fastest Known Time Run)

Assembly/Start/Finish Area: Barangay Dampay Salaza, Palauig, Zambales

Start Time: 5:15 AM April 17, 2015

Cut-Off Time: 10 Hours

Tapulao Trail @ Km #10 & Water Source

Tapulao Trail @ Km #10 & Water Source

"Tapulao" Is The Local Dialect Translation For Pine Trees

“Tapulao” Is The Local Dialect Translation For Pine Trees

RANK                NAME                                   TIME (Hrs)

1.  Raffy Gabotero (Overall Champion, Course Record)—-4:23:37

2.  Cesar Lumiwes (1st Runner-Up, Overall) ————4:41:11

3.  Ronnie Moreno (2nd Runner-Up, Overall) ———–5:39:55

4.  Aldous Gabriel Elan ———————————–5:52:01

5.  Moises Abadan —————————————-5:52:42

6.  Graciano Santos —————————————5:55:19

7.  Jaime Tulio ———————————————6:03:11

8. Jay Ar Romamban ————————————-6:10:58

9.  Joseph Montilla —————————————6:39:54

10. James Rapp ——————————————6:62:32

11. Jeffrey Velasco —————————————7:01:26

12. Pojie Penones —————————————-7:13:35

13. Sony Testinio —————————————–7:42:20

14. Salustiano Ramos Jr ——————————–7:42:21

15. Roel Romero —————————————-8:20:16

16. Alfonso Limque ————————————-8:32:43

Overall Champion & Course Record Holder Raffy Gabotero

Overall Champion & Course Record Holder Raffy Gabotero

Congratulations To All The Finishers!

Thanks and Appreciation to the Provincial Government of Zambales under the leadership of the Honorable Hermogenes Ebdane, Jr and his Staff for making this trail running event as part of the Dinamulag Zambales Mango Festival.





User’s Report: MERRELL’s “All Out Rush” Trail Shoes

23 04 2015

User’s Report: MERRELL “All Out Rush” Trail Shoes

Since the time I started running and buying running shoes, I always think and have the impression that “cheap shoes are low in quality and it is a waste of money spending on them”. This is the reason why I concentrated on using ASICS Shoes (Made In Japan, then) and New Balance (Made In USA, then, too!) during my early days as a road runner/marathon runner. Obviously, these brands then were the most expensive ones.

Since I started blogging, I’ve used different brands of running shoes and it was Joe Matias of “A Runners Circle” (ARC) Specialty Running Store in Los Angeles, California that gave me the ONLY Complimentary Shoes in my entire running career when the HOKA ONE ONE was initially introduced in the market. I am proud to say that I was the FIRST Local Runner in the Philippines to have used the said shoes 4-5 years ago. I was able to try their first models of their Bondi B and Stinson EVO. I never had a chance to review these shoes as I found them to be perfect shoes in my LSD on the paved roads due to its maximal cushioning. Up to this time, I always use these shoes in my training on paved roads.

Out of curiosity, I started to browse on the website of Merrell Shoes and I found their models very interesting and was able to read feedbacks/reviews of each model from its users which is a mixture of pros and cons on the on its fit, comfort, and durability. My interest in this brand of shoes led me to visit their distribution stores in Metro Manila. I am surprised that their stores have stocks on those shoes and models that I’ve seen in their website. In short, I bought my first Merrell Shoes which is the “All Out Rush”.

Fresh Look From The Box

Fresh Look From The Box

The All Out Rush (AOR) is categorized as a Cushioned Trail Shoes and I got the red one. I am not particularly interested with its specifications and material components because I just wanted an alternate training shoes for my trail running workouts.

I immediately used it in my trail running workouts. For the past one month & half and for almost 100 miles of trails in my “playground”, I am satisfied with it. The fit was perfect whether I use a thin or thick running socks or whether I tie the shoe laces tightly or loosely. But I prefer them (shoe laces) to be tied tightly so that the shoes is tightly snugged on my feet.

I have observed that these shoes don’t have any insole but I still find them to be comfortable. At first, I could feel the lugs of the sole of the shoes on my feet during my downhill running but as I used them, my feet became accustomed to the feeling as if there is a “massaging” feeling on my sole. But when I use a thicker pair of trail running socks, the feeling is completely gone. Actually, I have the same experience on the first few miles while using my Salomon S-Lab Sense 3 (SG) Shoes with its more aggressive studs on its sole.

I’ve been using it in my daily trail runs and have it sun-dried every time I removed them from my feet after my runs. I have never washed them and I am excited to wear them with the dirt and dust on their uppers every time I go for my trail running workout. I don’t smell any “nasty” odor from the shoes due to its “Breathable mesh lining treated with M-Select™ FRESH odor control”, whatever that description means but it is really true!

I find the shoes weight lighter than my Hoka One One Shoes which is 9.3 ounces per shoe, a standard weight for a cushioned trail shoes. I find the weight of a trail shoe and its cushioning as the two most important factors to consider in selecting a trail shoes for ultras and shorter distances.

Circular Studs On Its Outsole

Circular Studs On Its Outsole

I wonder what material the outsole is made of but it is not Vibram. I find it surprising that I don’t see any “wear & tear” signs on them after using them for almost 100 miles in the mountains over hardened trails, rocks, sandy lahar-like soil, and paved roads. The sole studs don’t have any signs of being deformed or shaved-off from its original appearance. As compared with my other trail shoes, like Hoka One One, Salomon, New Balance, ASICS, Adidas, and Altra, with almost 100 miles of usage, I could already see some signs of shaving-off of their outer soles (usually on the outer side portions) due to “wear and tear”. The outsole studs are not pointed or look aggressive as they are in circular forms but I find them very effective in my downhill running over loose soil and steep hardened trails.

More information and description of the shoes can be seen here:
http://www.merrell.com/US/en/all-out-rush/17004M.html?dwvar_17004M_color=J01697#start=1

You can buy two pairs of these shoes for the price of a “high-end” trail shoes being used by European elite mountain trail runners. But surprisingly, if you buy the shoes in the local market or in local Merrell Stores, they are much cheaper than what is posted as their price in their website.

Trail Shoes Are Meant To Be DIRTY

Trail Shoes Are Meant To Be DIRTY

Bottomline? Will I highly recommend these pair of trail shoes for you? Of course! You will get your money’s worth with this pair of shoes. If you are a compulsive runner-shopper, there is no need for you to order On Line/through Internet and wait for the delivery of your order. You simply go to the Malls and most likely, all the Sports Stores have Merrell Shoes in them. However, if you want more choices on their different models, the best way is to visit one of the Merrell Stores which are located in all the big malls in Metro Manila. (Note: The Staff/Sales Personnel in these stores are NOT trail runners or mountaineers, so be patient to just hear their usual “sales talk” while you are trying to walk or fit with the shoes!)

On my part, in a span of six weeks, I’ve already bought three (3) pairs of MERRELL Shoes to include the “All Out Rush”. Simply said, this is to inform my readers that I am NOT an Ambassador or Sponsored Runner/Blogger of this Shoe Company.

More “User’s Report” on other Merrell Shoes to follow.

Merrell's Out Of Flush In Action

Merrell’s “Out Of Rush” In Action





Official Result: 5th MAYON 360-Degree 80K Ultra Marathon Race (Solo)

12 04 2015

5th Edition MAYON 360-Degree 80K Ultra Marathon Race: A Run Around Mt Mayon Volcano

4:00 AM To 8:00 PM April 11, 2015

Starting & Finish Line: Penaranda Park, Legazpi City (Albay)

Cut-Off Time: 16 Hours

Number Of Starters: 313

Number Of Finishers: 278

Percentage Of Finish: 88.81%

Official Logo

Official Logo

RANK

NAME

TIME (Hrs)

1

Eliud Kering (Overall Champion, Course Record) 5:36:44

2

Bong Postrado (1st Runner-Up, Overall) 6:07:36

3

Mario Maglinao (2nd Runner-Up, Overall) 6:17:16

4

Marino Lagyap 6:30:47

5

Chito Gonzales 6:39:23

6

John Nino Monte 6:45:41

7

Adonis Lubaton 7:19:28

8

Carlo Morante 7:20:29

9

Froilan Enriquez 7:28:45

10

Salvador Nachor 7:32:42

11

Christian Velson Ticson 7:47:04

12

Ronald Aguilar 7:54:15

13

Neptali Icatlo 8:07:12

14

Jade Arevalo 8:08:48

15

Siegfried Amanca 8:13:25

16

Virgilio Undaloc Jr 8:13:28

17

Joseph Gentoleo 8:18:40

18

Stuart Gurr 8:21:53

19

Rafael Maestro 8:24:07

20

Karl Penones 8:29:34

21

Norman Ariate 8:32:55

22

Roy Calimlim 8:37:25

23

Alvin Luminario 8:40:24

24

Janette Agura (Champion, Female) 8:46:00

25

David Rivera 8:48:52

26

Sam Milan 8:55:58

27

Bembo Munap 9:00:52

28

Rocky Migpo 9:01:55

29

Silamie Apolistar (1st Runner-Up, Female) 9:02:00

30

Edgar Minas 9:04:59

31

Melchomelda Kitane (2nd Runner-Up, Female) 9:10:28

32

Melchor Flores 9:17:20

33

Antonio Quiriba 9:17:27

34

Cricenciano Borito 9:23:31

35

Diogenes Bernal 9:24:39

36

David White 9:26:17

37

Marlon Bon 9:30:56

38

Paul Drossou 9:41:16

39

Sebastian Roth 9:42:11

40

Smith Luna 9:44:01

41

Ruben Casim 9:48:38

42

Julius Ceazar Lim 9:49:44

43

Eric Solina 9:50:39

44

Ricky Betito 9:57:12

45

Chris Jefferson Lozano 9:57:49

46

Rosie Cantoria (Female) 9:58:11

47

Randy Cantoria 9:58:12

48

Nomeriano Barnedo Jr 9:58:14

49

Jennifer Cabbab (Female) 9:58:57

50

Ronaldo Racines 10:05:35

51

Saturnino Camangonan 10:06:49

52

Matthew David 10:09:38

53

Christopher Llobrera 10:11:34

54

Leo Ano 10:15:29

55

Sofronio Igay (Champion, Senior Citizen) 10:22:42

56

Cornelio Velus 10:23:53

57

Humali Cuizon 10:27:06

58

Rod Losabia 10:28:30

59

Allan Bandiola 10:30:40

60

Jerome Caasim 10:34:10

61

Ian Wellington Hukom 10:36:22

62

Erwin Alea 10”36:40

63

Roberto Banawon 10:37:34

64

Manny Magbanwa Jr ’10:39:12

65

Roselle Abajo (Female) ’10:43:55

66

Andrew Competente ’10:47:02

67

Orlando Alondra 10:47:31

68

Rhina Sison (Female) 10:48:26

69

Jess Evangelista 10:51:27

70

John Mark Sevilla 10:52:23

71

Florencio Bonaobra Jr 10:55:16

72

Ryan Nieva 10:56:20

73

Edmond Manlangit 10:57:05

74

Arjie Golimlim 11:02:13

75

Mhark Alan Pena 11:04:50

76

Killy Kunimoto (1st Runner-Up, Senior Citizen) 11:05:36

77

Aldrin Aguallo 11:06:32

78

Christian Cadez 11:12:58

79

Vicente Topacio 11:13:31

80

Ronald Julian Torregrosa 11:14:25

81

Trinidad Madison 11:15:58

82

Erwin Alamil 11:16:16

83

Gerimias Martinez 11:18:33

84

Harold Kim Isaguirre 11:18:48

85

Edgar Moron 11:20:35

86

Rey Bardelobar 11:21:41

87

Myriam Abejuela (Female) 11:26:18

88

Francisco Abejuela 11:26:42

89

Jelmor Biture 11:29:22

90

Raymundo Mabini 11:30:26

91

Tommy Tan 11:31:52

92

Anna Carmela Lim (Female) 11:37:03

93

John Michael Onipig 11:37:32

94

Marlo Alcantara 11:37:44

95

Gray Bateo 11:40:32

96

Brando Bueno 11:41:41

97

Jose Asis 11:42:32

98

Jonas Nacario 11:43:01

99

Gil Lustares 11:48:52

100

Pete Peralta 11:51:38

101

Marites Mangubat (Female) 11:52:34

102

Jeremiah Adam Prelleglra 11:53:09

103

Rodolfo Mapagdalita 11:54:22

104

Gary Castillo 11:54:35

105

Orlando Payumo (2nd Runner-Up, Senior Citizen) 11:55:15

106

Danilo Lim 11:55:20

107

Scherle Mark Abion 11:55:54

108

Albert Villamayor 11:56:00

109

Rodrigo Lanorias Sr 11:56:22

110

Cesar Pillarda 11:57:38

111

Rolfe Molina 12:01:54

112

Mark Jacob Banatlao 12:04:53

113

Wilmar Plopino 12:05:43

114

Cleodelia Armendez (Female) 12:06:43

115

Alex Alianza 12:13:38

116

Perfecto Balantes 12:14:03

117

Ma. Teresa Villa Abrielle (Female) 12:14:32

118

Rowena Madrid (Female) 12:14:37

119

Adrian Recacho 12:15:07

120

Aldrin Pallera 12:21:58

121

Rolan Cera 12:22:20

122

Rosette Pesuelo (Female) 12:22:41

123

Ronald Dedace 12:22:59

124

Santi Aphiwattanas 12:23:31

125

Samuel Bacayra 12:25:18

126

Dar-C Silao 12:26:22

127

Vincent Helario 12:26:29

128

Vicente Wanasen Jr 12:26:50

129

Benjie Moron 12:28:43

130

Ryan Laban 12:31:35

131

Abner Corpus 12:31:48

132

Joven Avila 12:31:56

133

Edmundo Tam 12:32:53

134

Remy Caasi 12:34:36

135

Noel Pitapit 12:35:27

136

Twila Mae 12:36:13

137

Eugene Dulay 12:36:25

138

Alberto Cruz Jr 12:38:47

139

Sherwin Guansing 12:44:41

140

Joel Rodriguez 12:47:15

141

Fabian Tagle 12:47:24

142

Severlino Real 12:47:59

143

Michael Peralta 12:48:15

144

Oliver Cavinta 12:52:17

145

Bernadeth Rocapor 12:55:59

146

Allan Joseph Abenes 12:56:15

147

Edsel Castillana 12:56:34

148

Elizalde Estrella 12:58:32

149

Henschel Boragay 12:58:36

150

Gracito Villaver 12:59:20

151

Alvin Sanga 13:02:27

152

Ma. Cecilia Macogay (Female) 13:04:24

153

Randy Padua 13:07:44

154

Ariel Pisquiza 13:09:01

155

Roderick Margallo 13:09:05

156

Arnel Amor 13:12:08

157

Nik Antonio 13:15:34

158

Ronald Dela Rosa 13:16:12

159

John Roger Calisin 13:16:24

160

Rosario Milallos 13:16:32

161

Boy Bernie Abrugan 13:16:43

162

Jesus Bayrante 13:16:54

163

Albert Constancio Ramon Hefti III 13:17:16

164

Almar Kenneth Marjalino 13:19:13

165

John Kevin Morcel 13:24:13

166

Randy Torralba 13:24:14

167

Teddy Boral 13:26:09

168

Reo Rey Jagonap 13:26:53

169

Mark Anthony Reyes 13:29:45

170

Jamie Rose Rillo (Female) 13:30:33

171

Mary Kristine Ira Garcia 13:30:34

172

Joshua Martin Esquela 13:30:51

173

Gilbert Balid 13:32:31

174

Grace Diocampo (Female) 13:32:36

175

Luis Ricario Jr 13:38:18

176

Rona Saludes (Female) 13:39:31

177

Hermie Saludes 13:39:33

178

Miguel Beduya 13:39:57

179

Junmar Que 13:40:50

180

Marinela Camatog (Female) 13:40:51

181

Addison Sayoc 13:41:02

182

Cecilia Lalisan (Female) 13:43:23

183

Gudelia Marcelo (Female) 13:45:39

184

Michael Angelo Maleriado 13:46:01

185

Daisy Visperas 13:46:24

186

Rus Kristoffer Parcia 13:50:06

187

Cerryson Moreno 13:50:37

188

Michael Yap 13:51:05

189

Angelica Isabel Paz 13:51:07

190

Kendrick Asanion 13:54:57

191

Venerando Monsarat 13:55:32

192

Rolando Macapagal 13:55:37

193

Joseph Ronquillo 13:56:06

194

Mario Honrado 13:56:18

195

Ma. Julieta Rael 13:56:32

196

Delmo Sullano 13:56:50

197

Julius Cruzat 13:57:13

198

Mignun Ignacio 13:57:19

199

Yancy Manaog 14:00:11

200

Kenji Akinaga 14:00:48

201

Julius Distrajo 14:01:15

202

Oliver Abuyen 14:01:28

203

Francis Sandro 14:02:53

204

Danilo Anonuevo 14:04:02

205

Lester Evangelista 14:05:37

206

Joe Peter Alaguer 14:05:59

207

Celso Callo 14:10:08

208

Victor Ansel Tingson 14:14:54

209

Errol Flynn Regaya 14:15:53

210

Chris Jefferson Lozano 14:16:19

211

Prospero Ibardaloza 14:16:30

212

Rhaffy Borbo 14:16:41

213

Nelson Val Caro Jr 14:18:13

214

Maureen Genes (Female) 14:18:21

215

Marife Dacanay (Female) 14:18:30

216

Ray Paras 14:19:13

217

Christian Rabe 14:23:37

218

Michael Arcos 14:23:46

219

Henry Llorente 14:24:36

220

Cyrus Barrameda 14:24:41

221

Joseph Nebrida 14:26:44

222

Efren Grogorio 14:27:10

223

Manuel Rebandaban 14:28:33

224

Arvin Arcilla 14:34:21

225

Ma. Emilie Mangampo (Female) 14:37:10

226

Mildred Tugado (Female) 14:37:23

227

Roxanne Maquinto (Female) 14:37:42

228

Arman Belen 14:37:52

229

Andrie Pacayra 14:38:07

230

Felipe Calixto Ignacio 14:38:21

231

Donald Jaca 14:42:23

232

Barge Harvi Singson 14:44:16

233

Janice Gilbuena (Female) 14:45:07

234

Joeven Gilbuena 14:45:28

235

Arjay Argote 14:45:41

236

Juan Tan 14:46:18

237

Ronald Tagsuan 14:48:37

238

Martin Roces 14:53:19

239

Josephine Bonavente (Female) 14:53:36

240

Arsenio Chavez 14:53:48

241

Gerly Santos (Female) 14:58:23

242

Jesson Prima 15:03:11

243

Wilbert Robles 15:03:12

244

Kristoffer Pelona 15:03:13

245

Victor Cambarijan Jr 15:03:51

246

Lhara Daferina (Female) 15:07:43

247

Ryan Calisura 15:08:24

248

Victor Biagtan 15:08:35

249

Melisse Montalbon (Female) 15:08:58

250

Ricardo Roxas 15:09:09

251

Matthew Mutia 15:09:39

252

Chris Allan Bandola 15:11:45

253

Romar Jaucian 15:12:37

254

Carlos Pitapit 15:12:50

255

Victoria Rodriguez (Female) 15:13:33

256

Ma. Leslie Abad (Female) 15:13:42

257

Leandro Gigantoca 15:14:58

258

Shane Siy-hian (Female) 15:18:22

259

Willie Adaz 15:18:24

260

Anthony Evon Cruz 15:19:17

261

Tim Tuscano 15:21:11

262

Marie Grace Blanco Perez (Female) 15:22:14

263

Russel Hernandez 15:22:16

264

Shanie Sinagco (Female) 15:22:42

265

Herbert Puyat 15:23:41

266

Aleli Gloria Delos Santos (Female) 15:30:49

267

Melchor Nicolas 15:31:01

268

Aldrin Cosa Barde 15:37:01

269

Rosita Dino (Female) 15:46:37

270

Elordino Piodos 15:46:55

271

Melissa Sarmenta (Female) 15:51:09

272

Raymund Sabater 15:53:23

273

Daniel Caampued 15:53:39

274

Evangeline Gregorio (Female) 15:53:49

275

Queenie Lynne Aceveda (Female) 15:54:09

276

Dhonabel Castillo (Female) 15:54:20

277

Rowena Santos (Female) 15:54:36

278

Raymond Nable 15:56:50
Starting/Finish Area

Starting/Finish Area

Champion & Course Record Holder

Champion & Course Record Holder Ellud Kering From Kenya

Congratulations To All The Finishers!





Official Result: 1st MAYON 160K Ultra Marathon Race

11 04 2015

1st MAYON 160K Ultra Marathon Race

Start & Finish Area: Penaranda Park, Legazpi City (Albay)

Start Time: 2:00 AM April 10, 2015

Finish Time: 10:00 AM April 11, 2015

Cut-Off Time: 32 Hours

Number Of Starters: 46

Number Of Finishers: 37

Percentage Of Finish: 80.43%

Route Map & Course Elevation

Route Map & Course Elevation

RANK    NAME                 TIME (Hrs)

1.  Lao Ogerio (Overall Champion, Course Record) ——23:47:13
2.  Reynaldo Oros (1st Runner-Up, Overall) —————-24:03:36
3.  Bonifacio Balleras (2nd Runner-Up, Overall)———24:03:38
4.  Beda Abugan —————————————————24:50:42
5.  Roberto Villamor ———————————————-25:33:25
6.  Bob Castilla —————————————————-26:36:35
7.  Barrey Red ——————————————————27:12:24
8.  Dante Adorador ————————————————27:27:24
9.  Henry Castillo —————————————————27:55:38
10. Mark Tibo-oc —————————————————-28:03:59
11. Sherwin Ivan Joboli ——————————————-28:08:56
12. Ruben Veran —————————————————28:26:17
13. Cris Liwanagan ————————————————28:27:58
14. Joefren Perez ————————————————-28:34:18
15. Glen Calixto —————————————————28:34:21
16. Dindo Almoquera ———————————————28:56:05
17. Joseph Pili ——————————————————29:02:25
18. Janice Mauricio (Female Champion) ————-29:08:40
19. Jude Thaddeus Singson ———————————29:28:11
20. Ernesto Badong ——————————————-29:31:17
21. Noel Ko ——————————————————29:43:37
22. Gia Estrella (1st Runner-Up, Female) ———29:44:24
23. Cheryl Bihag 2nd Runner-Up, Female) ——-29:51:31
24. Benedict Meneses —————————————-29:53:33
25. Eusebio Cabidog ——————————————30:00:02
26. Arianne Ortega (Female) ——————————-30:18:10
27. Peach Tamayo (Female) ——————————-30:25:17
28. Elmar Bob Tolete —————————————-30:25:20
29. Marck Arcky Imperial ———————————30:29:22
30. Joji Salvador ————————————————30:34:40
31. Joseph Evasco ———————————————30:42:39
32. Yolly Barja (Female) ——————— ————30:55:27
33. Zaldy Santillan ——————————————-30:56:34
34. Elly Casulla ————————————————31:02:56
35. Lauro Daliwag ———————————————31:07:39
36. Kelvin Dela Torre —————————————31:19:37
37. Alvin Cesar ————————————————-31:21:14

Brave Warriors Of The 1st MAYON 160K Ultra Marathon

Brave Warriors Of The 1st MAYON 160K Ultra Marathon

Overall Champion & Course Record Holder Lao Ogerio

Overall Champion & Course Record Holder Lao Ogerio

Congratulations To All The Finishers!!!








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