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NQ’d For 33rd MILO 42K Finals

9 07 2009

Race Report: 33rd MILO 42K Eliminations @ Luneta Park/4:25 AM July 5, 2009

Reading a lot of books and blogs of elite athletes influenced me to re-assess my training program after finishing the BDM 102K, BOTAK 42, and the LA Marathon (LAM) in a span of two months. It is said that these elite and competitive athletes adhere to the principle of “periodization” for the marathon and ultramarathon distances and provide a much-needed rest and recovery to their bodies from severe training and competitions. If these athletes/runners who are younger than me by 25 to 30 years had included in their training a period of rest and recovery, how much more for an older runner like me?

After doing a lot of “walkabouts” and “runabouts” in Los Angeles after the LAM, I’ve observed that there was some tightness and pain below my left knee cap and as a result, I immediately decreased my weekly mileage and ultimately embraced the need for a full rest and recovery even if I was already registered for the 33rd MILO 42K Elimination Race. As a warrior, I thought that I could not win every battle where I am going to fight if I am not sure I will not win. However, I thought of going to the battle to try and find out where I need to improve with the thought that if I will loss in this battle, I knew I could win the WAR in the next battle.

And so, at the beginning of the race, my mind was already geared towards the ultimate goal of finishing the race decently and make the MILO Finals goodbye and not included to be a part of my future battles. Last year, I was not able to join the 32nd MILO 42K Eliminations because I was in the United States for my first ultra trail run at Bulldog 50K. But due to my request then to the MILO Race Organizers, I was able to join the MILO Finals with an impressive time of 3:48:32 hours which I think I was then on my “peak period” for the year! It was then that I thought of planning to improve my time with the intention of qualifying for the Boston Marathon as I could make it to the 3:45 hours qualifying time for my age (55-59 years old).

Unfortunately, the BDM 102 and the BOTAK 42K made me a slower runner but I knew I could have a better time at the LAM.

I was already at the vicinity of the former Army & Navy Club (Luneta Park) at 3:40 AM with enough time to pin my race number and do some stretching exercises. Out from nowhere, the Hardcore Team (Jonel, Mari, Jay C, Lester, Kevin, Martin Lorenzo & Odessa) approached me and we had a brief chat and some photo-ops. I saw Jay aka Prometheus Cometh and Vener aka RunUnlimited having their warm-up. In a few minutes, we proceeded to the starting area where the rest of the runners were doing some stretching exercises. Inside the corral, I was able to greet and meet other runner-bloggers, BDM 102K Finishers, and the usual hardcore runners who are always present in almost all the road races in Metro Manila. A certain “Mike” (I am not sure if that’s the name I can recall) from California introduced himself and he gave me the impression that he is in the country to run the MILO 42K as he is also a passionate runner who had finished a lot of marathon races in the US, to include NY & Boston Marathon. He is 55 years old!

As in the rest of past Rudy Biscocho’s races, the race started ahead of the scheduled time and we were off for the race at 4:25AM. The race was totally different from my LAM experience at the few meters from the starting line. A 42K race with about 500 runners as compared to a sea of almost 15,000 runners is a “sign” that I am really back to the reality of running in my own country. However, the advantage is that, I could immediately start my GF 305 without waiting for about 10-15 minutes before crossing the starting line! In Manila, you only miss or wait a few seconds from where you start running before passing the starting line.

For the 1st 10 kilometers, I could still see the backs of Vener and Jay N at a distance and I estimated that I was running at an average pace of 5:45-6:00 minutes per kilometer. But later, Joms Paras, a younger and a fast runner, joined me along my side for almost 3-4 kilometers and I knew that I was already looking for trouble as I was doing a faster pace than what I estimated. Keeping pace with Joms and trying to maintain seeing the backs of Vener & Jay N at the 10K distance was already an invitation for a disaster to happen.

I was very confident to climb those overpass along Roxas Boulevard and was also confident to run up to the Kalayaan Flyover/Overpass without any problems. Well, that was what I thought. As soon as I was about to go down from the Kalayaan Overpass to The Fort area, an early sign of muscle cramps on my left calves started to appear and I had to slow down. I think this was where most of the runners overtook me. At this point, I tried to recall my past running workouts since I finished the LAM. While watching the leading runners going the opposite direction at Fifth Avenue, I tried to “shuffle” and make sure I don’t overstrain my calves while maintaining my running form with the hope of meeting my support crew along Bayani Road for my hard-boiled eggs and oatmeal. I knew I had been religiously taking my GU Roctane since the start of the race, drinking water in every water station, and drinking Gatorade in the provided stations along the way but still I could not figure out why at the early stage of the race I was already experiencing early signs of muscle cramps. I was expecting a sign of cramps at Km 25, not at Km 16!!! Whenever, the pain disappears, I would increase my pace with the hope that I could, at least, improve my finish time.

You could just imagine how desperate I was to spray that cannister of “pain killer” at the “P & G” runner’s booth infront of the Southern Police (PNP) Headquarters along Lawton Avenue!!! The Bald Runner was already dying with cramps and help was not coming!

I guess, my “hot temper” (which I did not show to the ladies at the booth) within me acted as my natural “pain killer” which made those cramps disappear while I maintained a slower pace. All of a sudden, I was already approaching the Heritage Park when the rain started. It gave some relief to my hot body but I knew that my pace was not improving at all.

On My Way Towards Heritage Park/C-5 Turn-Around

On My Way Towards Heritage Park/C-5 Turn-Around

Along Bayani Rd After The Rain/Going Back To Lawton Ave

Along Bayani Rd After The Rain/Going Back To Lawton Ave

I met my support crew along the Bayani Road on my way back to Lawton Avenue. As planned, I ate one hard-boiled egg and one pack mix of oatmeal with Gatorade drinks.

 After this brief stop, it was already a battle between being DNF in this race or continue to struggle up to the finish. Well, I never had a DNF in my running races and never had a DNF in my military career and much more never will have a DNF in the so-called trip called “Life”. I said to myself, DON’T QUIT! And I could still remember what I learned and always hear from my Officers and Soldiers when I was assigned with the Special Operations Command of the Philippine Army, that goes this way, “Mas mabuting mamatay, Huwag lang mapahiya”! (“It is Better To Die than Live in Shame”!)

Along Lawton Avenue & Back To The Fort

Along Lawton Avenue & Back To The Fort

At 5th Avenue, The Fort

At 5th Avenue, The Fort

"Don't Quit" Running Form!!! (Photo Courtesy Of Harry Tan, Jr aka Mukhang Guilty)

"Don't Quit" Running Form!!! (Photo Courtesy Of Harry Tan, Jr aka Mukhang Guilty)

And so, that was the running “mantra” while other faster runners would pass me along the way. I made sure I would drink water in every Water Station; drink Gatorade in cups in every Gatorade Station provided by the Race Organizers; ask hard-boiled eggs on the last 6 kilometers from my support; swallow my GU Roctane every 10 kilometers; and don’t over stride so that my muscle cramps would not appear.

Mesh V aka My Iron Shoes & Coach Titus Overtook Me at Lawton Avenue (Good Luck On Your SFM!)

Mesh V aka My Iron Shoes & Coach Titus Overtook Me at Lawton Avenue (Good Luck On Your SFM!)

People at the Support Stations of different running groups who know me would cheer me but I observed that they were not offering something for me. Of course, I did not ask anything from them in the first place but if these people would have the experience on how it feels to run a marathon, maybe, just maybe, one of them might offer a cup of water or cup of Gatorade drinks to me just to show some spirit of “volunteerism” in a marathon race. It is regrettable that this is another great disparity or difference in running the LAM and our local marathon races. On the other hand, I highly appreciated the support of Hardcore Team’s Ivy and Odessa for offering their drinks & food when I really needed them. Thanks, Guys!

The Face of A "Road Warrior"...In Pain!

The Face of A "Road Warrior"...In Pain!

BDM 102 "Warriors" Along Roxas Blvd (Albert Nama, Jonel, & BR)

BDM 102 "Warriors" Along Roxas Blvd (Albert Nama, Jonel, & BR)

Another View of These Ultra Runners

Another View of These Ultra Runners

On My Last Kilometer To The Finish Line

On My Last Kilometer To The Finish Line

Finally, I finished the race in 4:20:45 hours. Nothing extraordinary and it was a challenging fight with myself. Now, I can proudly say that I am Not Qualified (NQ’d) for the MILO 42K FINALS.

After Passing the Finish Line! Tired & Happy!

After Passing the Finish Line! Tired & Happy!

Instead of looking for other runners and congratulating them for their finish, I opted to display my Project Donate A Shoe tarpaulin in a place where other runners would see and my support crew displayed at least 50 pairs of donated shoes. In less than 10 minutes, all the shoes were gone and were received by runners and by even street/park sweepers of Luneta Park with their happy faces. I was happy that these donated shoes would end up to runners and those “poor souls” who needed them most.

Choosing The Right Shoe That Fits

Choosing The Right Shoe That Fits

Not Only Runners Were Given With Shoes

Not Only Runners Were Given With Shoes

In A Few Minutes All The Shoes Were Gone!

In A Few Minutes All The Shoes Were Gone!

To all the runners who were qualified for the MILO FINALS, my warmest congratulations to you! I will be cheering you along the route or maybe I will be putting up a “BEER STATION” for all the runners (if Mr Biscocho & MILO will permit it). Anyway, if you have “bandit runners”, I am sure there should be “bandit aid/support stations”. So, watchout for the “BANDIT BEER STATION”!!! 

To all the runners who were not qualified, please don’t run as “bandits”! It is better for you to “volunteer” as aid station personnel for the “bandit beer station”. Your reward for being a volunteer will be the remaining bottles and cases of beer which will not be consumed by the passing runners!!! In the first place, you were the ones who committed to donate those cases of cold beer!!

Deal or No Deal???

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23 responses

9 07 2009
run unltd.

Ayos! That would be a good project, I hope it would be legit. Congrats Sir Chief, your mantra of not quitting gave me goose bumps for I remember the ordeal of our soldiers in battle. That was one helluva ride again for you and I’m glad I shared the road with you once more. Cheers!

12 07 2009
kingofpots

thanks, vener. you are also a true “warrior” and a fast one!

9 07 2009
runnerforchrist

We must be proud with our accomplishments, be it a sub4, NQ’ed, sub5, sub6, sub7…and even DNFed if worst comes to worst. The only shameful thing is to cheat and to rob!
Congrats Sir! You have my respect although you ‘NQed’!

God bless.

12 07 2009
kingofpots

ronnie, there will be more marathon races where we will do a better performance. thanks!

9 07 2009
dendu

hi br, im runner # 633 (in photo). Yeah, the one with you on that spray can thing on lawton ave .. well i’ve read the apology of the P&G CEO and im fine with that. i just hope it will not happen again. btw its my 2nd photo op with you in your blog ( the other is at greenfields run ). Another proof to my non beleiving friends that im into running hehehe. see you again at the races. di rin ako na nagqualify sa finals eh, pwede ba makiinom na lang sa beer station mo.

12 07 2009
kingofpots

dendu, we’ll be glad to accommodate you as one of our volunteers in our “beer station”. hehehe!..thanks

9 07 2009
bards

sir count me in sa BeeR err… BR Aid Station. I hope we get to sample it before we serve the runners. 😀 seriously, congratulations on your run BR. you do inspire us.

12 07 2009
kingofpots

bards, of course, all the volunteers and donors will have a sample of the cold beer before they will be offered to the runners..thanks, bards

9 07 2009
gleeman

Sir Jovie, I have already learned many techniques from you. But you got to teach me that intriguing “BR SHUFFLE”. Congrats to your finish. And YES, YES, YES to the Beer Station. Cheers!

12 07 2009
kingofpots

anytime, i can teach you how to do the “shuffle”..very easy and effective. thanks for your support on the beer station.

9 07 2009
reinier6666

Dear BR – You did made the right assessment in your 1st paragraph! A very short span of time in covering an Ultra-marathon and three (3) marathons. You need Rest and Recovery BR. Natural law of age is catching up. But knowing you, I am sure you will be in a couple of full marathons for this year! More power.

12 07 2009
kingofpots

amado, you are right..i might finish another 2 marathon races before the end of the year..hehehe!

9 07 2009
elkyoshi

I really think congratulations are in order for finishing the race and not getting your first DNF. I know you’re not a quitter so I didn’t doubt for a second that you would finish. Congrats on the Donate A Shoe project too!

12 07 2009
kingofpots

that is what i am telling to mey readers…don’t quit!

9 07 2009
jetpaiso

deal! sali ako sir jovie, i will volunteer! will wait for details and see you sa milo finals on oct 11 =)

12 07 2009
kingofpots

jet, thanks for your support

9 07 2009
diyo68

Brad BR,
Don’t despair. Boston marathon will always be there. The important thing is to stay injury-free and be able to run “engana”. It took me 9 years to qualify for Boston starting in 1994 at 54 years. Now, 15 years later with 42 marathons(yes, like you, no DNF), I came to realize that the body can only take so much. I’m lucky I’m able to run(not fast) even with my sciatica. Hang in there, take care of yourself and don’t overdo your running. Happy running and my warm regards. Btw, congrats on finishing Milo 33. You look great in your photo. The buff came in handy too.
Your running friend,
D-U in NJ

12 07 2009
kingofpots

thanks, diyo..you are right..it takes patience, determination and focus to be able to qualify for the boston marathon. i guess, that will be the peak of my running fulfillment. thanks, again

13 07 2009
diyo68

Brad BR,
You got all those qualities in you. It’s just that you had all your race schedules one after the other when you ran Milo 33 and also your jet lag. Our bodies can only take so much. My sciatica started from running 6 marathons in 2006 without sufficient time for my old self to recuperate. Take care, stay injury-free and schedule your races accordingly and you’ll be on your way to Boston. Happy running. Brotherly yours, D-U

9 07 2009
wanderingfashionista

Greeting from Runnr! This is Nicole, public relations officer for RUNNR! RUNNR is the first world-class running specialty store in the country located in building B3 of Bonifacio High Street. The reason I’m writing is because we’d like to invite you to our media preview and testing day (8AM to 11AM) and formal launch (6PM onwards) on July 17, Friday Bonifacio High Street! Anyway, may we get your email address so we can send you the soft copy of the invite. Thanks and hope to hear from you soon! If you have any questions, you may also get in touch with me thru nicole.limon@runnr.com.ph or thru 0905-240-1555.

12 07 2009
kingofpots

thanks for the invitation..we’ll try to be there

9 07 2009
prometheuscometh

BR I second the motion with Amado. I think you will be back very soon. Rest easy and see you at the races again!

12 07 2009
kingofpots

thanks, jay..my training cycle will be starting soon for my next marathon race..

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