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Official Result: 7th PAU’s Tanay 50K Ultra Marathon Race

17 07 2017

2017/7th PAU’s Tanay 50K Ultra Marathon Race (Road)

Starting Area: Intersection Sampaloc Road & Manila East Highway, Tanay, Rizal

Start Time: 4:00 AM July 16, 2017 (Sunday)

Finish Area: Sierra Madre Hotel & Resort, Marikina-Infanta Highway, Tanay, Rizal

Finish Time: 1:00 PM July 16, 2017 (Sunday)

Cut-Off Time: 9 Hours

Number Of Starters: 31 Runners

Number Of Finishers: 30 Runners

Percentage Of Finish: 96.7%

2017 Tanay 50 02

Group Picture @ Starting Line

RANK              NAME                          TIME (Hours)

  1. Thomas Combisen (Champion, Overall) —– 5:03:06
  2. Frederick Peñalosa (1st Runner-Up, Overall) —- 6:07:06
  3. Mhel Biscarra (2nd Runner-Up, Overall) —- 6:15:45
  4. Aldrin Pallera ———————– 6:35:16
  5. Rod Losabia ————————- 6:37:19
  6. Remy Caasi (Champion, Female) ———– 6:37:39
  7. Gammy Tayao ———————- 6:39:07
  8. Almar Danguilan —————– 6:49:17
  9. Hope Brazil ————————- 6:51:34
  10. Bryan Taroma ——————— 6:56:25
  11. Kharl Ocampo ——————— 6:56:44
  12. Emerson Sto. Domingo ——– 6:56:50
  13. Gibo Malvar ———————— 6:58:57
  14. Dondon Talosig ——————- 6:59:37
  15. Kathleen Piñero (1st Runner-Up, Female) ——- 7:01:16
  16. Rolan Cera ————————– 7:22:12
  17. Michael Peralta —————— 7:24:42
  18. JP Navarette ———————– 7:33:46
  19. Emma Libunao (2nd Runner-Up, Female) ——– 7:40:01
  20. Marlon Santos ——————– 7:40:27
  21. Glenn Rosales ——————— 7:40:38
  22. Ronnel Go ————————– 7:49:36
  23. Glenn Adviento —————— 8:04:21
  24. Rona Saludes (Female) ——- 8:04:23
  25. Hermie Saludes —————– 8:04:26
  26. Jonas Olandria —————— 8:11:13
  27. Jonathan Moleta ————— 8:13:29
  28. Bernadette Schlester (Female) ——————- 8:15:59
  29. Arnold Pagaran —————- 8:24:29
  30. Reese Rogel (Female) ————- 8:59:48

   ***Jovie Narcise/RD ——————– 6:57:56

Thomas Combisen Tanay

Thomas Combisen, Overall Champion

Remy Caasi Tanay

Remy Caasi, Female Champion

Congratulations To All The Finishers! See you next year!

2017 Tanay 50 03

Scenery/View Along The Route

(Note: Pictures By Dmitri Conag Navarro & Remy Caasi on Facebook)

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Rules & Regulations: Bataan Death March 102K & 160K Ultra Marathon Races

17 07 2017

Rules & Regulations: Bataan Death March 102K & 160K Ultra Marathon Races

Starting this month, I will be writing and publishing on this blog about the Rules and Regulations of the Bataan Death March 102K & 160K Ultra Marathon Races for the appreciation of those who will be joining the 2018 edition. These rules and regulations had been published on this blog but for better appreciation and awareness to all the runners, I will post each rule/regulation for each post so that I can make some stories of our observations on some of the violations or tell to everybody the reason/s why we impose such.

I admit that these rules and regulations, as a start, had been copied from well-known and prestigious International Ultra Marathon Races in other countries. And through the years, we made some adjustments and revisions of these rules/regulations as a result of our experiences in the past editions of these races, whether they are good or bad!

It should be noted that these rules and regulations are there for the safety of the runners, which is the paramount objective of its presence and implementation. The second reason is that we would like to maintain the prestige of the race and the history that goes with it. And the third and last reason is for easier, efficient and effective management of these races.

So, from time to time, I enjoin everybody to find time to visit this blog for these rules and regulations. It is the responsibility of the runner-participant to know and remember these rules and regulations. It is also their responsibility to disseminate these rules to the Driver of their Support Vehicle and their respective Support Crew. Ignorance of these rules and regulation will NOT excuse any violators of these rules/regulations as they are very easy to understand or comprehend.

Good luck to all the participants of the 2018/10th Edition of the Bataan Death March 102K Ultra Marathon Race and 8th Edition of the Bataan Death March 160K Ultra Marathon Race.

1st BDM 102 LOGO 1





“Mortal Sins” Of Pinoy Ultrarunners

6 07 2017

In my nine years as a Race Organizer and Race Director of Ultrarunning events in the Philippines, I have observed two distinct “mortal sins” of our local ultrarunners. I have mentioned these sins/concerns in my Race Reports as I am also guilty on these in my previous races, whether they are road or trail races.

First “mortal sin” is starting too fast on the course. Most of the runners are too excited to start the race and due to such excitement, the race strategy that one had prepared to be followed is completely lost and gone from the mind of the runner. Aside from the excitement, the fact that you are still running as a group among the starters adds the idea that you are better and faster than the runners in front of you! Your mind thinks that the race is just another 10K or a half-marathon distance or a marathon distance where you can easily finish the race without hiking or walking along the course.

A fast start on a race makes the runner to be uncontrollable even if his/her support crew would advise him/her to slow down. The sight of another runner, whether he is located in front or behind, gives a feeling of insecurity to the runner. Most of the time, it is that “macho” attitude that you can easily pass the runner in front of you to the point that you would observe every movement of the runner trying to find signs if the runner is slowing down. On the other hand, you have also that “fear” that you would be passed by the other runner behind you, knowing that the runner is weaker than you from your past running events with him. As much as possible, you would not like to be overtaken by that runner.

There is also the thinking or misconception that you are trying to be fast at the beginning or early phase of the race so that you have enough “buffer” or “miles on the bank” as spare if ever you will be walking or hiking on the later stage of the race. Most often, such “buffer” could be easily squandered or wasted by the second “mortal sin”.

Second and most abused “mortal sin” is staying too long for rest and “refueling” in a “pit stop”. Which means that if, in event that a Road Ultrarunner sees his/her Support Vehicle, the tendency of the runner is to stop the run (still far from the Vehicle) and then walk for a few meters to reach the Support Vehicle. Once the runner reaches the Support Vehicle, he/she can not decide which one to do first: drink, refill the bottles, or eat some food. More often, runners would forget to refill their bottles even if they stayed too long in their “pit stop”. Sometimes, they would simply sit if there is a chair being offered by their Support Crew. Even if their bottles are still filled with water and there is no need to stop, the mere sight of their Support Vehicle gives an excuse for the runner to stop and approach the vehicle. Even if they have still food stashed in their hydration pack, the runner would still ask for some food from their Support Crew.

In road or trail ultras, there are runners who would not like to sleep in the Aid Stations or near their Support Vehicle. Others would take it easy, compute their “buffer” time, and then simply take a nap or sleep. There is nothing wrong with sleeping or taking a nap during the event but this habit takes a lot of wasted time for the runners. If you have properly trained yourself for the expected night runs and did your assignment, then there is no need for you to have an extended sleep during the night run. I know of seasoned ultra runners who have trained for their night runs and made used of their training during the actual event. The result is that they have better finish times!

To some, their rest is coupled or combined with unnecessary change of outfits, change of shoes, and/or change of socks! In most of my ultra races where I’ve joined, the outfit that I have on the start of the race is the same outfit that I have once I cross the finish line. I am very fortunate that I’ve never experienced any blisters on my feet or chaffing on any part of my body during my races. I sweat a lot during races but I don’t change my outfit when they are wet even if I have extra dry outfit in my drop bags waiting at the Aid Stations!

There are some runners who would take a shower while the event is on-going. I have observed a lot of runners in my BDM Races who find time to have their shower at the halfway mark! I am not sure if they are doing this ritual when they are training for it. It is fine with me as long as they finish the race within the cut-off time of the event.

When the runner reaches and crosses the finish line, he/she is very happy and emotional that he/she had finished the race. However, once the Official Result is posted and published, the runner would scan on the list of finishers and look for the ranking of the other runners. Most of the time, the runner could not believe that another runner had a faster time than what he made in the event. That’s the only time that he/she would think of those times squandered or wasted because of these two “mortal sins” of every ultra runner had experienced.

The challenge now is to have a better time for the next edition! And this is the “third mortal sin” of every ultra runner! However, there are so many ways to avoid this “third mortal sin”. If you have a problem of controlling your pace or speed once the race starts, you have to relax and remember those training days you have put in preparation for this race. Start slow to warm-up your muscles and then slowly increasing your pace during the run. Listen to your body and gauge your pace on the effort you are exerting during the run. That is only half of the story. The other half is to be able to maintain your hydration and nutrition strategy to fuel up your body as you increase your pace. Whether it is a road or trail ultra race, I always start behind the pack of runners and slowly inching my way to the middle pack or among the upper 50% of the runners or sometimes finishing on the upper 20% of the runners.

With regards to being “hard-headed” in expecting comfort from the sight of your Support Vehicle or the location of the Aid Station, there are so many things that you should remember. First, do not stop and refill your bottles with water if you haven’t consumed anything from your bottles or hydration pack. If you want to eat, consume first the food you have stashed in your hydration pockets before you get refills from your Support Crew. Second, if you intend to refill your bottles and get some foods, make it fast and systematic! You should be back on the road and continue your run in less than 1-2 minutes! Third, for those would like to take a “nap”, make it short and ask your Support Crew to force you to wake up after the agreed number of minutes of “nap” time! Fourth, there is no need for showers, change of outfit, change of shoes and socks, and “selfies” during the race. Everybody smells the same once a runner is drenched by his/her sweat! As for the outfit, whatever worked comfortably with you during your LSDs in your training, use them! Fifth, train your self to eat and drink while you are power-hiking as this would minimize your time in the Aid Stations. Sixth, whether it is road or trail ultra, organize your needs in plastic containers with markings on what point or Kilometer point where you need such items stored inside them (placed inside the Support Vehicle in Road Ultras). In ultra trail races, make sure you know the items you placed inside your Drop Bags or better yet, have a list with you in your pocket as to which items you have in those Drop Bags.

If you commit these “mortal sins” repeatedly or had committed them and you want to improve on your performance, practice my advise during your runs as they are not hard to follow.

Lace up and go run!

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Official Logos Of PAU & IAU

 





Team PAU @ 2017 IAU 24-Hour World Championships

28 06 2017

Team PAU Belfast 06

Official Banner Of The Event

A team of runners representing the Philippine Association of Ultrarunners (PAU), the National Sports Federation of Ultrarunning in the Philippines, will be joining the 12th edition of the International Association of Ultrarunner’s (IAU) 24-Hour World Championships to be held in Belfast, Ireland on July 1-2, 2017. The team is composed of three (3) male runners and one (1) lady runner who are residing in Ireland and the Great Britain. This will be the first time that the Philippines will be represented, through PAU, in this yearly prestigious ultra marathon event which is worldwide in scope and attendance. Each team is duly screened by the International Association of Ultrarunners (IAU) prior to their participation in this event. Without the endorsement of PAU and the other countries’ Ultramarathon Federations, anybody could not join and participate in this event.

Team PAU Belfast 04

Official Logo Of The Event

The Team is led by its Team Captain, Rolando Espina, who is the First Filipino to have finished the Spartathlon Ultramarathon last year in Athens, Greece. He is also the Overall Champion in this year’s edition of the Bataan Death March 102K (BDM 102) Ultramarathon Race held last January. Rex Brillantes  won the Overall Champion in this month’s Donadea 100K Ultramarathon Race held in Donadea Forest Park in Ireland with a time of 8:45:54 hours. Jivee Tolentino is also a fast ultra marathoner who just finished 6th Overall in this month’s Portumna Forest 100K Ultramarathon Race in Galway, Ireland with a time of 9:53:16 hours. Rolando Espina finished Overall 1st Runner-Up in this race with a time of 8:36:24 hours. All of these ultra runners are also seasoned triathletes.

Team PAU Belfast 01

Rolando Espina

Team PAU Belfast 02

Rex Brillantes

Team PAU Belfast 03

Jivee Tolentino

Due to some legalities and some paperworks to be done, only one Filipino Lady runner is qualified to join the team. She is Mylene Elliot, who is a “back-to-back” Finisher of the Comrades Ultra Marathon in South Africa (Up & Down Courses for 2015 and 2016 editions, respectively), and a resident of Great Britain. She finished her 2017 Virgin Money London Marathon with a time of 4:43:05 hours.

The Team PAU-Belfast will be supported by the following members of the Team’s Support Crew: Fermina Mermeto; Pete Elliot; Amado Damot; Blanche Damot; and Eugene Brillantes.

Team PAU Belfast 05

Mylene Elliot

The current National Record for the 24-Hour Endurance Run was set and under the belt of Thomas Combisen who finished eight overall among 27 international runners in last year’s IAU Asia & Oceania 24-Hour Endurance Run held in Kaohsiung, Taiwan last November 19-20, 2016 with a total distance of 203.45 kilometers covered during the duration of 24 hours of continuous running. With a milder temperature and cooler weather in Belfast, Ireland plus the fact that the team members now are more exposed to international ultra marathon events, it is expected that a new National Record for the 24-Hour Run will be set and recorded in this event.

The members of the team are excited to represent the Philippines as this world’s event is being held within their “backyard”, so to speak, and for the fact that they had been preparing for this event for almost one year since the IAU have selected the City of Belfast as the venue and knowing that Athletics Ireland & British Athletics are the Local Organizing Committee (LOC) of this event.

The IAU 24-Hour World Championships is an annual international 24-hour competition among Teams coming from the National Sports Federation of Ultrarunning in IAU-sanctioned member-countries which has now a membership of 82 countries. The IAU World Championship Record for the 24-Hour Endurance Run is held by Michael Morton of the United States in 2012 with a distance of 277.543 kilometers and for the Women’s Record was set by Mami Kudo of Japan in 2013 with a total distance covered of 252.205 kilometers.

As the President of the Philippine Association of Ultrarunners, I was able to send some congratulatory message to represent the country in a high-level and world-stage running competition, as well as advise, to the members of the Team PAU. I told them, “Don’t be intimidated with the presence of the “superstars” in ultra running in the world. You are not there to compete with them but rather to experience and enjoy those 24 hours running with them. Just maintain your pace and believe in the training that you put into this race. For me, you are already winners as being the first Team PAU to represent the country in an IAU World 24-Hour Championship Event.”

Among the international running “superstars” and elite ultra runners, Pete Kostelnick of the USA will be competing in this event. He is the present Course Record Holder of the Badwater Ultramarathon in 21:56:32 hours; Fastest Man to Run Across America in 42 days, 6 hours, and 30 minutes; and 5th fastest North American, all-time record of 163.5 miles (261.6 kilometers) covered in a 24-hour endurance run.

Let us give cheers and send good vibes to the members of the Team PAU to this event.

Mabuhay Ang Pilipinas!

pau-iau-logo

Official Logos Of PAU & IAU

 

 





Official Result: 2nd Mariveles To Bagac 50K Ultra Marathon Race (BDM Km 0 To Km 0)

26 06 2017

2nd Mariveles To Bagac 50K Ultra Marathon Race (BDM Km 0 To Km 0)

Start: 4:00 AM June 24, 2017 @ Bataan Death March Shrine, Mariveles, Bataan

Finish: 2:00 PM June 24, 2017 @ Bataan Death March Kilometer Post #0, Bagac, Bataan

Number of Starters: 26

Number of Finishers: 26

Percentage Of Finish: 100%

2017 Mariveles To Bagac

Starters & Finishers Of The Event

RANK         NAME                    TIME (Hrs)

  1. Nel Valero (Champion, CR/Adjusted Course) —-5:37:11
  2. Joseph Diones (1st Runner-Up, Overall) ——-5:45:01
  3. Ace Rodriguez (2nd Runner-Up, Overall) —–5:53:55
  4. June Gonzales —————-6:01:21
  5. Rod Losabia ——————-6:13:23
  6. Bryan Taroma —————6:23:36
  7. Hope Jhon Brazil ———–6:30:31
  8. Tess Leono (Champion, Female) ——–6:40:35
  9. Ray Casimero ——————6:42:15
  10. Richard Gy ———————6:43:40
  11. Felisisimo Gura ————–6:46:54
  12. Rosemarie Austria (1st Runner-Up, Female)—-7:02:59
  13. Loui Cotejar ——————-7:05:35
  14. Art Sanchez ——————- 7:27:39
  15. Adrian De Mesa ————- 7:27:53
  16. Emma Libunao (2nd Runner-Up, Female) —— 7:36:50
  17. Remy Caasi (Female) ——-7:36:51
  18. Marlon Santos —————-7:37:07
  19. Kim Jason Pinili ————-7:51:25
  20. Brady Yandoc —————- 7:53:30
  21. Jonas Olandria ————– 8:18:59
  22. Danilo Reyes —————– 8:19:14
  23. Ener Calbang —————- 8:33:46
  24. Anna Odessa Albaracin (Female) —- 8:41:25
  25. Fer De Leon —————–8:47:21
  26. Jeje Ajusto ——————- 9:07:15

Congratulations To All The Finishers!





Training = Stress + Recovery

19 06 2017

I really don’t know who started or formulated this formula on training. But in all the books and written publications that I have read, over and over, this formula is being mentioned repeatedly. In my own understanding of this formula is that, for me to keep on progressively and consistently improving on my running, I have to “use it or lose it” the God-given strength and endurance that I have developed through the years and mix it with the necessary rest and recovery so that my body would be stronger and better in my next period of training or running season or be “always ready” for the next race.

For this year, my successful finish at the 2017 Tarawera 100K Ultra Trail Marathon Race last February is a product of focused training since July of last year. After one month of recovery period of easy running and hiking the mountains of Los Angeles National Forest, I finished the 2017 Los Angeles Marathon with an impressive time of 4:24+ hours which surprised me, knowing that I did not have any focused speed training in preparation for this race. I guess, the stressed that I put in in my Tarawera 100K Race plus the rest & recovery that I did to my body prior to the Los Angeles Marathon, greatly helped for my body to breeze along and comfortably finished the event.

After I finished the LA Marathon, I went back to more trail running and hiking in my Playground on my own pace just to keep my body on the move on a daily basis except for Mondays which I consider as my Rest Day within the week. However, the first edition of the Lang-Ay Trail Marathon (42K) was already on my sight as my C-Race for the month of April with the objective/goal of simply finishing the race even if I am the last finisher. True enough, I was the last finisher and one of the “Pioneers” of this event which I consider as the hardest Marathon Trail Race in the country!

For the month of May, I registered for the Beast Trail 50K Run in Taiwan after I read a Race Report from one the runners who was a foreigner attending a conference in Taipei, Taiwan. I was just curious why most of the finishers had clocked in an average of 14-16 hours as finish times. And they had only 5 finishers in the 100K distance with a cut-off time of 30 hours! I trained a lot for the elevation in my Playground but I did not expect that I would face a lot of rock climbing, rope climbing, and rappelling plus the fact that it rained on the later part of the day that brought a very deep slippery mud on the trails. I still have two minutes to spare whether I would proceed to the 50K distance or shorten my race to 40K where I could still receive my Finisher’s Loot and get my UTMB points for the 50K distance. I opted to get the shorter route and took my time to finish the race. I even helped some of the local runners who got lost and asked for direction and another lady runner-participant of the 22K race to whom I helped in climbing those slippery uphill trails. Finally, on the last 4 kilometers, I lend her one of my trekking poles as I saw her trying to look for a branch of a tree/plant along the route to be used as her balance pole! The lady runner thought that I was from Japan! I finished the race in 14+hours just in time for the last bus to depart from the race venue to Taipei which is 1:15 hour ride. I was glad that I did not spend the whole day and night hiking and trekking in the mountains of Taiwan!

The Beast Trail in Taiwan had really put some beating on my body that I was not able to walk straight for two days! It was only after a week of rest & sleep, eating, and a 2-hour deep-tissue massage that made me back to my running and hiking form again!

Two weeks after the Beast Trail in Taiwan, I was one of the runner-participants/”sweeper” of my new running event which is the BR’s Quad Marathons. Though my finish times were slow, I and the rest of the runners are very proud that we all finished the event without any pain or injury. I guess, I would attribute the endurance and strength that I had in this event as a product of the “stress” I put in to my body during my participation in the Beast Trail Race in Taiwan.

Aulo Dam Mt Mapait

Training For The Mt Fuji Mountain Race In Nueva Ecija (Photo By Nel Valero)

After a two-day rest & recovery after the Quad Marathons, I am back again to start my training for the Mt Fuji Mountain Race (21K), A Race To The Peak which will be held on July 28, 2017!

I have six (6) weeks of training before my next race! I am sure there will be more “stress” on this one! Wish me luck! If ever I finish this race (or not), the recovery will come next…and the cycle continues!

However, in between those cycles of races that I join, I always make it a regular habit to have Mondays as my Rest Day. And every month or four weeks of training, the 4th week is my recovery week where I decrease the volume and intensity of my training workouts.

So, what is the message that I am driving at in this post? Keep on “stressing” yourself into something that you love and passionate to do and that you need to recover and find time to rest your body for you to get a better performance and full satisfaction for the work that you invested towards the attainment of your goal. In short, keep on moving forward because training makes us stronger and healthier person!

Lace up and go run!





Epilogue: 1st BR’s Quad Marathons

15 06 2017

Having known an event which was experienced and finished by an ultra running friend in one of his trips/visits in the United States, I thought of the idea that local Pinoy runners can also do such an event without even going out of the country. What is really important in this kind of event is to have a period of 4 days which are declared non-working holidays and the place where one can have a varied routes for four marathons in four days. Of course, there is also the need to have some runners who are brave enough to try and experience what it is like to run one marathon distance each day for four consecutive days.

I though of my birthplace, Laoag City, as the place to conduct this event because it has a lot of road networks that converge to the center of the city. Having been familiar to the road networks in the place, I decided to have this event held in the city. There is no harm in taking the risk of conducting this event even if there is only one or two runners.

Laoag City

Landmark Of Laoag City (Photo by May Santos)

A simple Facebook Event Page was created just to inform the “Public” and my FB friends about this event. And I did not personally contact each and every ultra running friend to be invited to join this event. As I said before, I create an event and I let runners join my event in their personal volition. It is inherent that most of my friends were excited to find out that this Quad Marathons is a new event and most of them signified to join or simply clicked the button “Interested”. But knowing the real attitude of the Local Runners and even PAU Members, who are really good friends, I did not expect much that most of these people will be joining this event. The bottom line here is, I really don’t care!

After a simple coordination with the LGU of Ilocos Norte and the Provincial PNP of Ilocos Norte, the event was a GO! And the rest is history!

It has proven once again that Local Pinoy Runners can match the endurance and stamina of other runners in other countries. The Quad Marathons can be done even in simple logistics and needs for the runners. Additionally, it is proven once again that I don’t need Corporate Sponsorship if I want an idea to be implemented and put into action. To prove a point, the Bataan Death March 102K Ultra Marathon, the event that started all these “craziness” in ultra running in the country, had survived for almost 10 years without any Corporate Sponsorship!

I would like to thank the following ultra running friends: Dondon Talosig from Tuguegarao, Cagayan; Gibo Malvar from Piddig/Sarrat, Ilocos Norte/Paranaque, Metro Manila; Rod Losabia from Metro Manila; Tess Leono from Metro Manila; Rose Betonio from Metro Manila; Kathleen Piñero from Metro Manila; and Laurice Rogel from Metro Manila who were the “Pioneers” of this event. These runner-finishers will receive appropriate Awards & Commendations for their feat during the 2018 BDM & PAU Get Together Party. I would also thank May Santos from Marikina, Metro Manila for being the Recorder/Marshal/Official Photographer of the event. I would like also to give thanks and commend the support given by Numeriano De La Cruz and Joaquin Bordado of Team Kimat Running Club of Ilocos Norte. Lastly, to my Personal Staff and the Support Crew of each runner who made sure that all the Logistics/Administrative needs were made available during the event.

As a runner-participant of this event, I was able to prove my running philosophy in order to inspire others to run—“If I can do it, then, you can do it, too!” If want to create an idea, make sure you can do it so that you are a reliable and consistent person!

Day 4 Paoay

Turn-Around Point On 4th Day (Photo By May Santos)

As per my observation on the runner-participants, I could see that each of us have that tendency to be competitive with one another even if we were having fun, enjoying the environment & scenery of the route, having a “bonding time” among friends, and with the experience of being attacked by street dogs in some of the populated areas along the route. Each runner has a different style of dealing with these street dogs—some would shout back at the barking dogs; some would simply run faster away from the attacking dogs; some would bring a stick to ward off the dogs; and some would just blind the dogs with their powerful handheld lights. However, I would simply ignore and never looked at the dogs when I would pass infront of them. But the most effective way to prevent the dogs from biting you is to NEVER use any headphone or play your music/ playlist during this kind of event. I should know because in one of my adventure runs, I was bitten by a street dog while listening to my playlist on my iPod! Also, one of the runners have learned some lessons in marathon racing where one should be light and simple if you want to have a faster time in a marathon race!

Oh, yes, I was the official “sweeper” of the event to make sure that all my runners would be able to finish each event within the cut-off time of 6 hours and 30 minutes. I am glad all the runners had successfully finished the race! I guess, in my races, that is one of the duties of the Race Director!

Personally, this is how I felt during the period of four days. I think the rest of the runners would have to agree with me on my feelings. Before the start of the event, I was not sure if I would be able to have the stamina and endurance to finish the whole event. After I finished the first day Marathon, I was exhausted due to the hot and humid weather even if it was then in the evening and early morning. I was already thinking of a reason or alibi where I would simply sit back in my car and supervise the runners for the remaining 3 marathon races. But I though that ones personality is being tested here in this event. So, I was not at all excited for the 2nd day event. However, after 1-2 kilometers of running on the 2nd day’s route, we were met by cold air and winds coming from the mountains east of Laoag City and it was very refreshing. The cooler temperature made us faster to finish the event on the 2nd day. On the start of the 3rd day, I was silent and apprehensive as I told to the runners that the course will be darker due to the absence of street lights along the route and some portions have road constructions. But the runners did not complain and they registered a faster time, too!

After we finished the third marathon, I brought all the runners for a day tour along the last day marathon course and they were able to familiarize some locations and the overall elevation profile of the route. Aside from being the last event, knowing the course on a walk/drive-through boosted their morale to finally get things done immediately! The experience running in the rain for about 10-12 minutes at Km 5-6 was really exhilarating and enjoyable! There were no complaints from the runners and we finished the event with a much faster time.

For the first two days, we used the front portion of the Provincial Capitol of Ilocos Norte as the Start/Finish area since we did not cross the Laoag/Padsan Bridge or River. But for the two remaining days,we changed the location of the Start & Finish at the LAOAG Landmark at the foot of the Laoag City Bridge. The variety of the locations of the Start and Finish gave a very nice documentation on the exposure of Laoag City and the Province of Ilocos Norte.

These are my assessment and conclusion on this event: First, it takes a veteran marathoner or an ultra runner to finish this event. Two, even considering the difficulty of the elevation on each course, the tendency of the human body to be faster and stronger as the event progresses from day one to day four. Three, since the Aid Stations are the Support Vehicles of the runners which are mobile that “leap-frog” ahead of the runners, one has to be very good in his/her nutrition and hydration strategy. And lastly, our human body is a wonderful God-given “machine” that has a way of recovering from pain & exhaustion through proper nutrition and rest & recovery within a span of 24 hours.

Baliw

Congratulations To Everybody! (Photo By May Santos)

Next edition will the same schedule as we had this year where the last day event culminates with the Independence Day of the country.

Once again, congratulations to all the runners, support crew & staff, and to our volunteers/marshals.

Lace up and run!

 








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