25 Dec 2008—I had my Christmas run on the road. I started almost 9:00 AM from BHS to McKInley Hill and back to Global City. Later, I proceeded to J.P. Rizal Street to visit the Makati Park and Garden along the Pasig River. It was accidental that I was able to see the newly-contructed modern oval track at the University of Makati Compound. I told to myself that I have to come back to the said oval the following day to take a picture. From the said oval track, I returned to the BHS area for another 2 kilometers before my cool down run & walk. I was able to run a distance of 14 kilometers in almost 1:30 hours.
26 Dec 2008—I started my “runabout” at BHS area at 8:30 AM and proceeded to the Makati Park & Garden along JP Rizal Street. Took some pictures at the said park and met some runners inside who “saluted” me despite wearing a baseball cap and sunglasses. From the park, I proceeded to the newly-constructed University of Makati Oval Track and took some pictures. I talked to the Security Guards of the compound and I was informed that the Oval Track will be open to the public next month, January. I am really impressed on how the oval track was constructed which is surrounded by covered bleachers with colored seats. How I wish the Philippine Sports Commission and all the local government executives in the country should see this athletic infrastructure. This is the most modern oval track I’ve seen in my life, better than the school tracks I’ve seen in Los Angeles and California! After taking some pictures of the oval track, I ran towards the Powerplant and ran around the buildings and crossed the Pasig River towards Mandaluyong. From Mandaluyong, I took the Shaw Blvd towards Pasig City, turning right along C-5 and back to BHS/Global City. I finished my “runabout” at McKinley Hill. I finished almost 19 kilometers in 2:03 hours.
Makati City improved this area three years ago along JP Rizal Street going towards the Guadalupe Bridge
The pathway along the park on the banks of Pasig River (fronting the Powerplant area)
Where are those brass letters on this marker of the park?
Kids playing and swimming along the banks of Pasig River at the Guadalupe area.
Inside the Makati Park & Garden
The University of Makati Oval Track is surrounded with covered bleachers. So far, this is the best oval track I’ve ever seen, better than the oval track at Mt San Antonio College (Mt SAC) near Los Angeles where US amateur track events’ records are always broken. The tartan track looks like this when it is newly applied on the ground!
Plastic seats screwed on the concrete steps of the bleacher.
27 Dec 2008—I received a txt message from Jonel/Bugobugo on Christmas Day inviting me for a “runabout” on this day with a route plan from BHS to MOA area. I immediately accepted his invitation. So, this morning, I prepared for the unexpected just like when I had my “runabouts” for the past two days. I wore my runner’s cap, Maui Jim sunglasses, long-sleeved NIKE performance shirt, NIKE tight shorts, TNF Hydration Backpack, camera, cash, cellphone, and my heavy but most comfortable ASICS Gel-Kinsei 2 shoes with thick PUMA socks. We were four runners—Jonel, Armand, Rico, and I, for today’s “runabout”. Jonel & Armand are “hardcores” and it was Rico’s first long run/”runabout” and it was a way to “baptize” his newly-acquired brand-new GF 305. This “runabout” is also memorable to Rico because the first data in his GF 305 will be entered as his first entry for the “1,000-Km Club”. We stared at 6:23 AM at ROX/BHS and we ran towards Lawton Avenue until we reached the Diosdado Macapagal Avenue. After running for the first 10K, we had our first pit stop at McDonald’s for pancakes & orange juice. As we started to run again, we decided to reach the Cultural Center of the Philippines after running along the seawall of MOA. Running towards MOA and along the seawall was a comforatble pace for us as we met so many people who were jogging, walking, and sitting along the seawall and at the park. We reached and ran the ramp of the Film Academy Theater, passed infront of the Sofitel Hotel (former Philippine Plaza Hotel) and Folk Arts Theater. We stopped at the Jollibee near the CCP to relieved our bladders and drink water. As I was adding more water to my hydration pack, one of the waitresses made a friendly comment about my perspiration dripping on top of the table where I placed my hydration pack. I told her that we are passing through as we started our run from The Fort and we are still be going back to the the said place by running. The waitress was surprised and amazed. I guess, she was thinking that we were “crazy”. From Jollibee, we walked to a park across the CCP and had some photo-ops. After the photo-ops, another “decision” has to be made—are we going back to BHS from this place or go all the way to Luneta first before going back? Unanimously, we have to reach Luneta! Still running at a slow pace, we ran along the seawall and I was trying to see the water if it was clean and free from wastes like plastics, papers, and styrofoams. I did not see any waste on the water but the water was too dark and I was surprised to see a lot of people swimming along the rocky shore of Manila Bay. Some of the people were fishing using the traditional “hook & line” and others were there with their family and friends enjoying the sight and smell of Manila Bay. While approaching the US Embassy, I was dismayed to see a lot of wastes along the small portion of seashore of Manila Bay near the US Embassy compound. I wonder why we have to wait for a decision and ruling from the Supreme Court to force the Government to clean the shores and the water quality of Manila Bay. In my opinion, an efficient waste management system along the seawall or park along the Manila Bay would solve the clean sight of the seawater by placing appropriate trash bins along the seawall; employing efficient “sweepers” who make their rounds every 30 minutes to one hour; a regular garbage truck to pick-up accumulated trash bags; an a disciplined populace (this is the hardest thing to satisfy!). The quality of water along the Manila Bay is another problem to deal with which needs a complete overhaul of our “old” and “ancient” sewerage and drainage system for the whole Metro Manila. It should ne noted that all our wastes and drainage end up to the Manila Bay! As we reached the “KM 0” mark, another decision has to be made again!—Are we going to run back to BHS or take a taxi ride? After some photo-ops at Km 0 and at the Rizal Monument, the decision had been made—what else?…run along Roxas Blvd towards Buendia/Gil Puyat. And we run and run until we reached Ayala Avenue. We had a brief pit stop for “taho” at corner Gil Puyat & Ayala Avenues near the RCBC. After the “taho” stop, we walked towards the nearest 7-11 Store and replenished our hydration bladder and bottles with water. We run again along Ayala Ave crossing EDSA without going through the pedestrian overpass. It was only while running along the McKinley Road that I realized that the road was an uphill towards The Fort area. It was almost 11:00 AM when we entered the territory of The Fort. We ended our run at the usual Start/Finish Area of road races at the Fort. All of us enjoyed the run and we ended doing our stretching exercises. My GF 305 registered a distance of 28.4 kilometers with a running time of 3:22 hours. My thanks for the company of Jonel, Armand, and Rico. They will be surprised to know from this post that this run was my third day of “runabout” since Christmas Day. Guys, you are all certified “hardcores”!
At the park near the CCP (Rico, Armand, BR & Jonel/Bugobugo)
This is the only part of Manila Bay along Roxas Blvd where I saw a beach sand with lots of trash! Look at those people swimming!
At KM 0, where all the kilometer posts in the country are based from. We are at the center of the country!
Infront of the Rizal Monument in Luneta Park (Jonel, BR, Rico & Armand)
Our “pit stop” for “taho” at the RCBC Building
Our next “runabout” will be a run along the EDSA—from Roxas Blvd to Monumento (Caloocan) and back. It is the fault of Rico for asking from Jonel the exact distance of the whole EDSA. The “hardcores” will measure the distance/length of EDSA through our GF 305s. This is the “hardcores’” way of celebrating a prosperous new running year of 2009. If you think you are “crazy” in running and interested to join, contact Jonel/Bugobugo for the details. The date is still “secret” for security purposes. Do you want to join?