The State of Ultra Running 2020

18 01 2020

This study was made by RunRepeat.com and the International Association of Ultrarunner (IAU). This is an excerpts from the said study. You can read the whole article here.

In this study, we explore the trends in ultra running over the last 23 years. We have analyzed 5,010,730 results from 15,451 ultra running events, making this the largest study ever done on the sport. 

Key results

  • Female ultra runners are faster than male ultra runners at distances over 195 miles. The longer the distance the shorter the gender pace gap. In 5Ks men run 17.9% faster than women, at marathon distance the difference is just 11.1%, 100-mile races see the difference shrink to just .25%, and above 195 miles, women are actually 0.6% faster than men.
  • Participation has increased by 1676% in the last 23 years from 34,401 to 611,098 yearly participations and 345% in the last 10 years from 137,234 to 611,098. There have never been more ultra runners.
  • More ultra runners are competing in multiple events per year. In 1996, only 14% of runners participated in multiple races a year, now 41% of participants run more than one event per year. There is also a significant increase in the % of people who run 2 races a year, 17.2% (from 7.7% to 24.9%) and 3 races, 6.7% (from 2.8% to 9.5%). 
  • There have never been more women in ultrarunning. 23% of participants are female, compared to just 14% 23 years ago. 
  • Ultra runners have never been slower across distance, gender and age group. The average pace in 1996 was 11:35 min/mile, currently, it is 13:16 min/mile. The average runner has added 1:41 min/mile to their average pace, which is a slowdown of 15% since 1996. We don’t believe that individual runners have become slower, but that these distances are attracting less prepared runners now because the sport is more mainstream.
  • Runners improve their pace in their first 20 races, and then their pace stabilizes. From their first to their second race runners improve by 0:17 min/mile (2%) on average. But by their 20th they improve by 1:45 min/mile (12.3%).
  • The fastest ultra running nations are South Africa (average pace 10:36 min/mile), Sweden (11:56 min/mile), and Germany (12:01 min/mile). 
  • A record amount of people travel abroad for ultra running events. 10.3% of people travel abroad to run an ultra, for 5Ks this percentage is just 0.2%.
  • Runners in the longer distances have a better pace than the runners in the shorter distances for each age group. 
  • All age groups have a similar pace, around 14:40 min/mile. Which is unusual compared to the past and to other distances. 
  • The average age of ultra runners has decreased by 1 year in the last 10 years. It has changed from 43.3 years to 42.3 years. 
  • Ultra runners are getting more engaged – the average number of ultras per year has increased from 1.3 to 1.7 over the last 23 years.

Based from the “Key Results” of this study, I would like state my opinion and observations on the following:

  1. Participation has increased by 1,676% in the last 23 years from 34,401 to 611,098 yearly participation and 345%in the last 10 years from 137,234 to 611,098: Within this period in 2009, the Philippines had its contribution of an event in the ultramarathon community with the introduction of the First Edition of the Bataan Death March 102K Ultramarathon Race. I can safely say that this was the first Ultramarathon Race in the country in the 21st century (from the year 2000 and beyond). It is also the First “Point-to-Point” Ultramarathon Event in Asia. Through the Philippine Association of Ultrarunners (PAU) and endorsement of PATAFA in 2010, the Philippines was the 6th ASIAN country to be accepted and sanctioned with the International Association of Ultrarunners (IAU). PAU is also considered as the FIRST ASEAN Ultramarathon Federation to be a member of the IAU. The BDM 102 Ultra had “sparked” the popularity trend of ultramarathon events in the country as more events were organized by individual persons in almost all regions in the country in the coming years. Trail Ultras had also expanded in the country with runners trying to get ITRA points for possible entry to the UTMB Races. However, in this report/study, I can only see Malaysia as the only South East Asian country that is included among the Top 20 countries that has the most number of ultra marathon runners. I wonder why? With Malaysia’s population of 32.7 Million against the Philippines’ population of 109 Million? With more Ultra Races here in the Philippines than Malaysia? Maybe, this is a good start for somebody in the country to document and collate all the ultramarathon events and number of participants in every event in the country. I am not saying that we should be included in the Top 20 countries of Ultra Marathoners but we have the potential to be a future contender in the said list if we just cooperate and be united among ourselves.
  2. Local Ultra Marathon Runners Have The Tendency To Run More Ultra Races Every Year: With more Ultra Race Organizers “sprouting” all over the country, runners are enticed to join these races and taste what it is like to finish an ultramarathon race. But what I’ve have observed is the loose consideration and “comfort-oriented” prescribed cut-off times of these races. In Japan, the average cut-off time for their 100K Road Ultra is 14 hours and 8 hours for the 50K. For the BDM 102K, due to the heat and prevailing weather, the cut-off time is 18 hours and for my 50K PAU Events is 9 hours. For the PAU 100-Mile Road Races, it is pegged at 32 Hours. For longer distances, a PAU runner must be able to cover an average distance of 5 kilometers every hour. All these Cut-Off Times for my races are way below and slower than the cut-off times of Japan’s Road Race’s COTs. I can not speak well about the other Road Races in the country and their respective COTs. (Note: In almost all my Races at PAU and BR’s Events, I use myself as the “gauge” to determine a decent COT for the distance as I run my events first before making it as an Ultra Marathon Event for the Public)
  3. More of our Local Ultra Marathon Runners Are Satisfied With Just Finishing: This is the reason why our Average and Competitive Ultra Marathon Runners could barely finish the Races in International Events. This is a question of having so many Ultra Races but not having Quality Finishers with the goal to level-up or be at par in International Standards in Ultra Marathon. I consider myself as one of the “back-packers” and one of the last runners to finish within the COT in International Races but considering my age of almost 68 years old, I still consider myself as a good quality Ultra Marathon Runner. I have yet to see a Filipino Ultra Marathon Runner who will land as Podium Finisher in the Badwater 145-Mile Endurance Race (with due respect to those Pinoys who have finished this tough race); a Silver Buckle Awardee in the WSER 100-Mile; a Podium Finisher in the Spartathlon; Podium Finisher in the Leadville 100 & Hardrock 100, and a Top 10 in the UTMB.
  4. Fastest Countries In Average Pace: South Africa in 10:36 minutes per mile is the fastest; Sweden is second in 11:56 minutes per mile; Germany is third in 12:01 minutes per mile; and Malaysia in 20th rank in 15:55 minutes per mile. Based from the yearly results of the BDM 102K Ultra, I can safely say that the Average Finish Time is between 16-17 hours (with a COT of 18 hours). Using this as a baseline, an Average Local Runner who finished the BDM 102 is just a few seconds slower than the Malaysians. Positively speaking, we could be in the 21st or 22nd rank! (I can only speak for my PAU Races as I know that most of the other races have slower COTs).

For the meantime, these are the only observations and conclusions/opinions that I can think of as related to this study. I hope that in the next period of study (within 5 or 10 years), the Philippines will be in the List of Top 20 Countries in the Ultra Marathon Community. Let us strive more to be positive. And let us unite our efforts in this sports.

Official Logos Of PAU & IAU

 





Gear Review: Uniqlo Heat Tech Crew Neck Long-Sleeve Shirt

17 01 2020

Some of my subscribers to this blog have requested me to feature Gear Reviews on the Apparel/Running Kit that I am using in my races, running workouts and hikes. And so for this year 2020, I am featuring my first Gear Review whose brand name is not so popular as a Sports brand name and it is considered as a brand for Casual Wear. This is the UNIQLO brand which had been introduced in this country few years ago and had expanded in almost all the key cities in the country. This is a Japanese brand and it suits to us as Asians.

For this post, I am featuring the UNIQLO HeatTech Crew Neck Long-Sleeve Shirt which I bought few weeks ago purposely as a casual wear, an inside shirt, for my Business Suit/Coat which I intend to use during my International Flights outside the country. Actually, I bought three (3) pieces of this shirt. I got the Dark Green, Red, and Blue colors. Each has a tag price of P 790, a price which is very much cheaper than any of the long-sleeve shirts with a popular sports brand name.

UNIQLO Red Long Sleeve Crew Shirt

It says in its item specification that the shirt is light and warm but not bulky. It has cropped sleeves and stay hidden under shirts or jacket, if used as an undershirt when wearing under a jacket, coat or another buttoned shirt. The comfort features include bio-warming, insulating, moisturizing, moisture-wicking, anti-static, anti-microbial and self-deodorizing. The material of the shirt is stretchy and has a shape-retaining material. I got size SMALL and it feels comfortable to my body as it is not fitted like a compression shirt.

At noon time today, I went out from my house for a two-hour hike into the hills and along the slopes of Mt Roosevelt (the highest elevation in my Playground which is almost 2,000 feet above sea level). As a part of my training, I was carrying a backpack with a weight of 24 pounds of water bottled in four 2-liter bottles and an additional frozen water in one 1-liter bottle. I was carrying also some trail foods and a cellphone.

Having started at noontime, the sun was hot and the sky was without clouds, I was surprised that I started to perspire after two kilometers of intense hiking on a continuous uphill terrain. I usually start to perspire after running for one kilometer. But with the heavy weight I was carrying, I thought I would perspire after hiking a few meters from the gate of my compound. The shirt was very comfortable as I started to perspire as I was going up to Mt Roosevelt as I passed the distance of two kilometers. Even if the color of my shirt was in dark green, the feeling of my skin from the shirt was not too hot but it was cooler than what I expected. It was only after I reached the peak of a hill where the base of an electric power tower is located that I felt that I was drenched with perspiration. I reached this peak in 1:05+hours and I decided to have this place as my turn-around point.

I decided to bring down my backpack and bring out the trail food and my cellphone at the base of this electric transmission tower for some rest, hydration and ingest my nutrition. My UNIQLO shirt was entirely wet from my perspiration but I have observed that the damp of my shirt provided me the coolness to my body. After a few minutes of eating, drinking and taking some “selfies” from my cellphone, I started my hike again and back to where I started.

Even if it was too hot while I was on my way back, I still feel that my body was so fresh and refreshed by the damp shirt. The wet shirt has a cooling effect to my body and I felt I was not perspiring while I was hiking on the downhill and uphill. I finally reached the gate of my compound after 2:17+ minutes. As I removed the shirt from my body, I have observed that the shirt did not retain much moisture and it was very light as compared to other moisture-wicking shirts from popular sports brand names where they are very heavy once they are drenched with my perspiration.

With the price of 790 Pesos, the shirt has  eight (8) colors: White, Light Gray, Dark Gray, Black, Red, Dark Green, Blue, and Navy. I am planning to look for a white color for this Uniqlo shirt in my next visit to their store.

With its cheap price, comfortability, and lightness when wet, I am highly recommending this Uniqlo shirt for Ultra Runners, whether they are on the road or trails.

Mountain Hiking With UNIQLO Dark Green Long Sleeve Crew Shirt

(Note: I am NOT a Sponsored User of UNIQLO Products)

 





2020 Schedule Of BR’s/PAU Events

16 01 2020

2020 Schedule of BR’s/PAU Events
January 11-12, 2020—12th Bataan Death March 102K Ultramarathon Race
February 22-23, 2020—10th Bataan Death March 160K Ultramarathon Race
March 26-28, 2020—6th Manila To Baguio 250K Ultramarathon Race
April 25-26, 2020—- 2nd PAU 6-Hour & 12-Hour Endurance Runs (Iloilo City)
May 3, 2020—Tagaytay To Nasugbu 50K Ultramarathon Race
May 8-10, 2020—8th WEST COAST 200K Ultramarathon Race
October 3-4, 2020—6th Zamboanga Mountain Ultramarathon (80K/50K/25K)
October 21-24, 2020—-PAU 4th NORTH COAST 200-Mile Ultramarathon Race
November 29-December 5, 2020—2nd Manila To Pagudpud 580K Ultramarathon Race
*There will be 6-Hour & 12-Hour Endurance Races at the Headquarters Philippine Army, Fort Bonifacio as requested by the runners. These events will be FREE.
*PAU GrandSlam Award Races For 2020:
  1. 6th Manila To Baguio 250K Ultramarathon Race
  2. 4th North Coast 200-Mile Ultramarathon Race
  3. 2nd Manila To Pagudpud 580K Ultramarathon Race
  4. 8th West Coast 200K Ultramarathon Race
Note: 2020 PAU GrandSlam Awardees Will Receive SEIKO 5 Watch Each

Official Logos Of PAU & IAU

 





Official Result: 12th Edition Bataan Death March 102K Ultramarathon Race (BDM 102/Original Route)

13 01 2020

2020/12th Edition Bataan Death March 102K Ultramarathon Race (BDM 102/Original Route)

Start Time & Place: 10:00 PM  January 11, 2020 @ Bataan Death March Shrine/Park, Mariveles, Bataan

Finish Time & Place: 4:00 PM January 12, 2020 @ Old Railway Station, Barangay Sto. Niño, San Fernando City (Pampanga)

Course Cut-Off Time: 18 Hours

Number Of Starters: 68 Runners

Number Of Finishers: 55 Runners

Percentage Of Finish: 80.88%

2020 BDM 102K Group Picture @ BDM Km 0

RANK      NAME                TIME (Hrs)

  1. Thomas Combisen (Overall Champion)—10:40:18
  2. Jubert Castor (1st Runner-Up, Overall)—12:15:12
  3. Jon Sierra (2nd Runner-Up, Overall)—13:45:34
  4. Roberto Andrada—13:58:00
  5. Allan Camas—14:23:40
  6. Jaime Cabalunan—14:24:26
  7. Marjorie Ellen Jore (Female Champion)—14:28:07
  8. Khristoffer Pobre—14:30:34
  9. Paolo Mesina—14:33:43
  10. Criselda Baucas (1st Runner-Up, Female)—14:34:15
  11. Gibo Malvar—14:49:02
  12. Jason Tabudlo—15:05:50
  13. Felicisimo Gura, Jr—15:13:56
  14. Johnzel Irlandez—15:19:27
  15. Dixie Sagusay (2nd Runner-Up, Female)—15:20;30
  16. Mychael Vicencion—15:34:43
  17. Candido Cayanan—15:46:59
  18. Laico Tolentino—15:51:58
  19. Jay-Ar Del Rosario—15:52:52
  20. Allan Macaraig—15:56:45
  21. Ludgino Quitay—16:02:14
  22. Frederick Palma—16:13:44
  23. Clarito Clarito—16:16:35
  24. Robert Nomorosa—16:34:54
  25. John Hilario—16:35:38
  26. Rogelio Palma, Jr—16:36:05
  27. Elditha Alvarez (Female)—16:36:18
  28. Eric Olleta—16:43:45
  29. Javier De Luna, Jr—16:46:38
  30. Carlo Ladores—16:47:50
  31. Sab Placiente (Female)—16:50:44
  32. Rex Esquirre—16:51:00
  33. Reque Angway—16:51:38
  34. Aldrin Lacse—17:01:08
  35. Raymond Kenneth Dionisio—17:08:02
  36. Jose Karlo Dollaga—17:08:11
  37. Orlie Fabia—17:08:41
  38. Maremy Jacinto (Female)—17:08:56
  39. Chester Lee Robite—17:14:43
  40. Niño Alejandro—17:15:20
  41. Joel Holgado—17:18:04
  42. Anna Odessa Albaracin (Female)—17:18:20
  43. Khristian Caleon—17:18:42
  44. Frank Flora—17:19:00
  45. Victor Rodriguez—17:20:28
  46. Rickly Francisco—17:22:15
  47. Efren Olpindo—17:24:46
  48. Erika Batac (Female)—17:26:28
  49. Paul Delos Reyes—17:27:00
  50. Jimmy Famaranco—17:34:20
  51. Michael Torres—17:36:34
  52. Kevin Carl Relox—17:38:35
  53. Emery Torre—17:51:30
  54. Rodolfo Lantin—17:55:07
  55. Kim Travella (Female)—17:58:28

2020 BDM 102K Overall Champion Thomas Combisen

2020 BDM 102K female Champion Marjorie Ellen Jore

Congratulations To All The Finishers!





Refused!

10 01 2020

For the third time, I was refused to join in one of the UTMB Races for the year 2020. I pre-registered for the CCC (101K) Race where my prevailing earned ITRA points for the past two years are qualified. After looking for the list of accepted/registered runners from the Philippines at the UTMB Website, I found out that there are 14 Runners for the UTMB (out of 50 applicants); 6 Runners for the TDS (out of 7 applicants); 4 Runners (out of 15 applicants); and 1 runner (out of 5 applicants) who will finally join the UTMB Races for this year. I am one of those 11 applicants who were not lucky enough to be included among the CCC participants.

In the formal notice that I have received from the UTMB Race Organizers which was sent to my e-mail address, they have stated that they have implemented an updated entry process for the year 2020. The bottomline is that I have to apply again for the year 2021 with a bigger chances to be included in the list of participants. There is also another option where I could join without going through the lottery if I can finish the 100-mile or 100-kilometer races in their UT Races in China (actually, 2 races in China), Spain, and Oman. Since these UT races are qualifiers for the longer UTMB race, they will not be part of my option as I want to join the CCC in the near future, if qualified and accepted. But for now, Chamonix is gone in my mind as I have to wait for the pre-registration for the 2021 UTMB Races this coming December 2020.

My plan for 2020 is to make CCC as my A-race and the rest of the trail races that I have scheduled and planning to join are part of my ITRA points accumulation; preparation/training for CCC; and a way to visit other places where I have never been. As they say, “If Plan A did not materialize, there are still remaining 25 letters in the Alphabet!”

As a teaser, I have already registered to three (3) International Trail Running Events for the year 2020 and these races will be revealed as my blogging progresses from day to day. Of course, there are also Local Trail Running Events that I am planning to join as part of my training/preparation for these International Events. My non-acceptance to the CCC Race had given me a lot of options to travel to other countries and places that I have never been before. Hopefully, Chamonix will be good for me in the year 2021, if I still have the strength at the age of 69 years old.

For those Pinoy Runners who are accepted for the 2020 UTMB Races, congratulations and wishing you the best of luck. Train properly. Enjoy the journey!

2020 Ultra Trail Mont Blanc (UTMB) Poster





Goodbye, 2019!

9 01 2020

This is my first post for the year 2020. I am sorry for my readers and followers to this blog that I was not regular in making or posting my stories about my races and training. I was concentrated in my daily posts and readings on Facebook that I forgot to publish my stories in this blog. Hopefully, the New Year of 2020 will change everything as I will make sure to make a regular post in this blog.

For the meantime, I would like to post the list of races that I have finished for the year 2019. In the coming days, I will make a story or Race Report on each of these races (except for those which I have posted already in this blog).

  1. Boston Marathon: The 2019 Boston Marathon is the 123rd Edition of this Most Prestigious Marathon In The World. I was able to qualify for my age (61-65 years old) in the 2017 Revel Canyon City Marathon Race with a time of 3:46+ and I had to wait for two years to be able to join this prestigious race. I will post a separate story about my experience in the said race.
  2. REVEL Mt Charleston Marathon: I joined this race two weeks after I completed the 2019 Boston Marathon with the thought that I could qualify again for the 2020 Boston Marathon with my present Age Category of 66-70 years old. I failed because of the heat after the 13-Mile mark up to the Finish Line. However, I will still make a detailed Race Report about this experience in joining a Marathon Race in Las Vegas, Nevada.
  3. MILO Half-Marathon Race In A Suit: This could be a FIRST in the History of Running in the Philippines’ MILO Marathon/Half-Marathon where a participant would run in a Business Suit. I finished the race but I was not able to qualify for the Finals. I posted a story on Facebook and in this blog about this experience.
  4. Lavaredo’s Cortina Trail 48K Run: After a year, I have to return to Cortina D’ Ampezzo, Italy to complete the Lavaredo Trail Course and finish the last 48 kilometers of the route. I was able to finish it with barely two minutes before the Cut-Off Time. This experience showed my tenacity and grit to finish this race. It was a wonderful experience and I need to share my story about this in my incoming posts in this blog.
  5. The North Face (TNF) 50K Philippines: After three years of being absent in the Philippines’ Trail Running Events, TNF Philippines revived its iconic trail running in the country. I opted to join the 50K race to test my endurance in the month of October after having some break/rest after I have finished the Cortina Trail 48K in the last week of June. With not much of training and preparation, I used this race to evaluate myself and I was able to finish it within the prescribed cut-off time. More details of this race in my Race Report.
  6. The North Face (TNF) 50K Hong Kong: I was one of the late registrants of this race and I think I was the only Filipino who came from Manila who joined this race. I guess, some of the local Filipinos who planned to join this race backed-out on the last minute because of the prevailing situation in Hongkong. I forced myself to join this race to evaluate my training and present status of my body if I can finish this race. With hardwork, patience, and grit, I was able to finish this race, two hours before the prescribed cut-off time. I was happy with my performance in this race and it provided me with a more positive attitude to join more trail running events in the future despite my senior age. For the sake of the Local Trail Runners, I will post a story about my experience in this race soon.

It is nice to be back in this blog as I promised myself to make a habit to post a story in this blog about anything that I could think of but the main focus will still be about running. Some of the future intervening stories in this blog will be about my hobbies, daily activities, and my collections. I promised myself also to write and post, at least, once a day on anything that I could think of.

Note: This is my 4th day not being able to update my Facebook Wall; not making any LIKES and COMMENTS in the posts of my FB friends. Presently, I am regularly posting my thoughts on Twitter and pictures on Instagram. Hopefully, I will transform this blog as my Facebook Wall.

2019 MILO Half-Marathon In A Suit





Official Result: 5th NAIC To NASUGBU 50K Ultramarathon Race

31 12 2019

5th Naic To Nasugbu 50K Ultramarathon Race

Assembly & Starting Area: Public Plaza/Covered Court near Naic Catholic Church, Naic, Cavite

Assembly Time: 3:00 AM December 29, 2019, Sunday

Start Time: 4:00 AM December 29, 2019, Sunday

Finish Area: PETRON Gasoline Station, Nasugbu, Batangas (Owned By Lt General Rudy Obaniana, AFP (Ret.)

Cut-Off Time: 10 Hours (2:00 PM December 29, 2019)

Number Of Starters: 23 Runners

Number Of Finishers: 21 Runners

Percentage Of Finish: 91.3%

RANK          NAME               TIME (Hrs)

  1. Kit Feliciano (Overall Champion)—5:49:11
  2. Sherwin Bargos (1st Runner-Up, Overall)—6:48:50
  3. Carlito Don Rudas (2nd Runner-Up, Overall)—7:16:11
  4. Armando Olan—7:19:52
  5. Graciano Santos—7:34:00
  6. Khristian Caleon—7:46:30
  7. Efren Olpindo—7:59:10
  8. Dixie Sagusay (Female Champion)—8:09:28
  9. Carlito Montemayor—8:36:20
  10. Eric Lim—8:36:22
  11. Alen Alban—8:50:00
  12. Ian Torres—8:52:00
  13. Vicente Zapanta, Jr—8:52:02
  14. Margie Pailaga (1st Runner-Up, Female)—9:00:20
  15. Laico Tolentino—9:00:57
  16. Jonas Olandria—9:00:59
  17. Bien Alcala—9:10:13
  18. Michael Torres—9:24:54
  19. Erica Batac (2nd Runner-Up, Female)—9:31:05
  20. Gibo Malvar—9:41:43
  21. Janice Reyes (Female)—9:41:46

Overall Champion Kit Feliciano

Female Champion Dixie Sagusay

Congratulations To All The Finishers!

 








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