6:20 AM 29 March 2009 @ UP Diliman Campus
The missed the first edition of the Men’s Health 10K Road Race last year as I was still in tha active service as the Commander of the 3rd Infantry Division of the Philippine Army stationed in Jamindan, Capiz in Panany Island. I did not want to miss this year’s edition this time even if I was already on my tapering stage for the 1st Bataan Death March 102K Ultramarathon Race. Upon hearing most of our Team BR members joining this weekend’s event, I decided to register in this race last Wednesday with the intention of maintaining a certain level of speed for my 10K and half-marathon races.
Immediately after the Condura Half-Marathon last Sunday, I scheduled a program as my last training preparation for the Bataan 102 for the remaining days before April 5. Actually, most of the seasoned ultramarathoners would suggest a 3-week tapering period before the race day but in my own way, I have some apprehensions about the long period for me to taper. Reducing my mileage for three weeks would make me “sluggish” on race day and I have a lot of experiences from past races where I took time to rest before the race day. I always smile and just tell to most of the runners that I don’t believe in taking some rest from running as part of tapering before the race whenever they asked me if I am already tapering for the ultramarathon race.
Since last Monday, I had one (1) “runabout” with my feet on the ground for 5 hours with most of the time under the heat of the sun; one (1) running workout at the oval track trying to condition my legs to an average pace of 6:45-7:30 minutes per kilometer which took me 3 hours and 30 minutes; two (2) sessions of “speed training” at the oval track (Tuesday & Friday) with an average pace of 4:35-4:50 minutes per kilometer; one (1) session of coming up with an average pace of “brisk/power” walking which brough me to an average pace of 8:30 minutes per kilometer; and one (1) “walkabout” under the heat of the sun for 6 hours with an average pace of 10 minutes per kilometer. It should be noted that “brisk/power” walking is entirely different from the “racewalking” style of Amado aka Reinier6666 wherein the latter generates a faster pace but with entirely different legs muscles at work and lots of hip swaying. The “brisk” walking I will be adopting for my ultra race would be the slower version of jogging.
Hardcore Runners Waiting for the Others
A View of the Starting Area
BR & The "Wingman"
This morning’s Men’s Health 10K Run was purposely for maintaining my competitive level of preparation for the Bataan 102. I was thinking of finishing the race in sub-50 minutes would be a satisfactory gauge for my training as a result of this week’s activities. I arrived at the UP Campus at 5:10 AM and I saw a small group of runners at the assembly area while more of the runners are still trying to register for the race. I assumed that there were no lady runners in this race as there was also another race for the ladies at the Mall Of Asia (MOA), Pinay In Action Road Race. I did some stretching and warm-up run near the place where my car was parked. But after about 20 minutes, I started to join the other runners at the Starting Line. The Team BR-Professional Group members were there and we had conversation about the race and about the incoming Bataan 102.
The Participants of the WheelChair Race Division
And The Race Started...20 Minutes Late!
Finally, the race started at 6:20 AM, 20 minutes late from the scheduled start and I observed a number of ladies at the front of the starting line. I knew these ladies will slow us down once the race started but I did not mind them because I did not have any intention of having a PR in this race. My starting pace was slow because of the crowd infront of me and tried to overtake the ladies infront. After running for about 150 meters, I started to look at my watch and I saw that I was running at an average pace of 5:00 minutes per kilometer. I maintained such pace as I looked for the other members of Team BR way up ahead of me. The first kilometer was flat but I had to be careful with the asphalted road as there were uneven portions of the road. I observed that, despite my warm-up and stretching exercises, I still feel some pain on my ankles whenever I use my Newtons. But these pains are just temporary as they disappear after a few minutes of running. It could be that the Newtons would force my feet to use my midfoot when running after days of using my ASICS Running shoes. As I turned right at the curve portion as we go for our first downhill, it marked the end of our first kilometer.
Kilometer #1 Split Time—4:56 minutes
The downhill portion made me ran faster as I overtook some of the runners. After some turns, I was able to see the 1st water station and I immediately grabbed one cup and drank almost its contents. It was a nice move on my part. The downhill portion levelled off and we are already near the intersection of the main road towards the Oblation. Crossing the main road was no problem as there were lots road marshals manning that very sensitive place where lots of vehicles would pass in going into and going out of the campus. After about 150 meters from the intersection, the road started to have slight uphill terrain. Two hundred meters away from the corner ahead marked the end of Kilometer #2.
Kilometer #2 Split Time—4:23 minutes
The start of Kilometer 3 is an uphill portion of the route and it takes about 200 meters before you reach the portion of the route where it levels off. This was where I had to overtake more runners. Before going downhill at the front of the UP Cinema (?), this was where I saw the next water station and I grabbed one more cup of water and that was my last chance to drink water for the duration of the race. From here, it was a slight downhill and I took advantage of it to increase my pace in order to compensate the time lost in the previous uphill part of the route. As I started to go uphill again, it marked the end of Kilometer #3.
Kilometer #3 Split Time—4:47 minutes
The uphill part was short and I was able to overtake at least two runners as we turned right towards the Academic Oval. I tried to run at the middle of the road along the Academic Oval and the runners were mixed with the usual weekend joggers,cyclists, and walkers. The road was slight downhill and I tried to increase my pace while avoiding lots of the walkers along the way. The curved portion where we had to turn left towards the Oblation marked the end of Kilometer #4.
Kilometer #4 Split Time—4:38 minutes
The curved portion towards the Oblation is a slight downhill and I maintained my pace as I weaved from one walker to another just to have my running space along the route. As I passed the Oblation, going back to where we started was a slight uphill and I was surrounded by runners and cyclists. You can no longer determine who were part of the road race or not because of the sight of lots of people on the road. I am not complaining for those slower walkers and joggers and cyclists but the race marshals must be able to warn those who are not part of the race to keep a portion of the road. Orange cones would had been helpful as a dividing line for the road racers and the weekend walkers/joggers at the Academic Oval. The starting line marked the end of Kilometer #5.
Kilometer #5 Split Time—4:47 minutes
Since the 10K run consisted of two 5K-loop, I imagined that I was starting my second 5K run but with a plan to finish the second loop with a faster average pace. I increased my pace as I started the second half of the race.
Team BR's Elite Cris Sabal Leading The Race
Team BR's Elite Ellen Tolentino Winning The 10K Ladies Division
Running Side By Side With The Younger Ones
Kilometer #6 Split Time—4:33 minutes
Kilometer #7 Split Time—4:22 minutes
Kilometer #8 Split Time—4:44 minutes
Kilometer #9 Split Time—4:32 minutes
Kilometer #10 Split Time—4:41 minutes
On A Full Throttle Mode
Definitely, I registered a “negative split” time where I had a faster time for my second half of the race. I was able to finish the race with a time of 45:12 minutes based from my GF 305 watch with an average pace of 4:38 minutes per kilometer. This is my fastest finish time in a race done at the UP Campus since I was joining races here. I registered an average Heart Rate of 156 beats per minute which I think is a very comfortable activity to my heart in the said race.
Near The Finish Line
Tomorrow, I will come up with my Chairman’s Report about the Road Race which I need to be brought officially to the attention of the Race Organizer and the Race Director or even for the information of the Race Sponsors. If you have any comments about the race, feel free to leave your comments on this post.
Congratulations to those who finished the race and most especially to those who registered their PRs.
Michelle and the Hardcore Runners
Joven & Mr Paiso with BR
Norio Tanaka, one of the Bataan 102 Warriors
A Meeting with the Rest of the Bataan 102 Warriors