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Race Report: 2017 Miyamit Falls 42K Trail Run (4th Edition)

13 10 2017

Race Report: 2017 Miyamit Falls 42K Trail Run (4th Edition)

I was one of the “pioneers” of this trail race and I published a Race Report about it. That was four years ago and had been a trail runner for two years when this event was conducted.

I did not have any plans of joining this year’s edition but I thought of exposing my running buddy and training partner for a race, for the first time, which is very near my Playground. It was still within the Registration Period when I sent a message to the Race Director, Atty Jonnifer Lacanlale, of my intention to join in this year’s edition of the event with another runner. He gladly accommodated my request and I informed my training partner (aka Official Kodaker) that I have registered him to compete in a Trail Marathon.

Whatever my training for the day is the same training that we had to do and run together. For the past months and weeks since the middle of June of this year, my training partner was exposed to the training program/schedule that I got from my Professional Coaching Services. If the schedule calls for “hill repeats”, he would do so but with a faster speed/pace than me. If my schedule calls for a “tempo run repeats”, he would stay with me for the first repetition and ask him to just hold my camera and take pictures of me while doing my intense and hard “tempo repeats” in the mountain. If I do my “strides”, he would quicken his pace as he is always positioned behind me in my runs.

Knowing that he has the strength and speed for the race, I taught and advised him on tactics and race strategy during a race. I advised him to position himself on the 3rd or 4th guy from the front, with his eyes on the leading runner on the first half of the race. If he has still the strength and speed on the second half, that is the time to make a move. On a final advise, I told him not to talk or engage in any conversation with those guys in front of him or to anybody. He should be focused on getting in front by all means before reaching the finish line. However, if he can not keep up with the pace of the top runners, I advised him to conserve his energy on the first half (climb to the peak/turn-around) and then go as fast as he can on the downhill going to the Finish Line. And that was what he did! He finished #6 Overall and he was happy. And the Coach is happy, too!

Leo 02

Leo Taruc, My Training Partner & Kodaker (Photo By Glairold Recella)

Four years had passed when I joined the First Edition of this event and I finished #36 out of 115 finishers with a time of 7:58+hours then at the age of 61 years old and two years after I’ve transformed myself from a road runner to a trail runner. It is not bad to condition my mind that I would improve my time in this year’s edition. I announced on my Facebook Wall that I will try to improve my time in this event, even for some few minutes! I was wrong!

At exactly 5:30 AM of Sunday, October 1, the race started at the Alviera Recreational Center in Porac, Pampanga and the runners were combination of those doing the 42K and 26K distances. I call the 42K runners as the “bravest ones” in this event! As for me, running without “trekking poles”, is again my “bravest and dumbest” decision in this race! It should be noted that I finished the CM50 for four times without the aid of trekking poles because I was simply “hard-headed”! I guess, as I become older in this kind of sports of Trail Running, it is already a mandatory on my part to bring trekking poles with me if the event allows the runners to have them as a running gear.

From the Starting Line, I jogged and ran comfortably, making the flat and downhill sections going to Barangay Sapang Uwak (1.5 to 2 kilometers) as my “warm-up” run which is equivalent to my 20-minute of “warm-up” runs during my daily workouts. As I approached the center of the Barangay, I was still running comfortably as the road became steeper. I am glad that we took the original route where almost one kilometer of the steepest portion after the Barangay Hall had been cemented/paved. But the steepness of the road was still brutal to the runners’ legs! A Lady Runner would curse and shout the F-word as I passed her. I really don’t know if she was cursing me or cursing herself or cursing the road! There was no need to look back to see her face or engage in a conversation with her!

There was a lot of new faces in this event and most of them were my first time to see them. I saw some of the “usual suspects” and I know by their names and most of them are “loyalists” to this event. It was also a good observation that I saw a lot of runners wearing the Hoka One One Speedgoat 2 but I was glad I was wearing a different shoes! The color of the my Speedgoat 2 does not match with the color of my Running Kit! Hahaha!

2017 Miyamit 42K Profile

Miyamit Falls 42K Elevation Profile (From Training Peaks)

I tried hard to reach the Miyamit Falls within two hours but I failed! I reached the falls at 2:28+hours and went back to AS3 where I filled my hydration bottle before proceeding to the Peak/Turn-around point which is another 10 kilometers! It took me another 2:30+ hours to reach the Peak/Turn-Around point. On my way back to AS3, I have to stop and eat my Pack Meal on a flowing stream where I have to sit on a rock and drink some water. I think I was able to rest for about 20 minutes just to regain my strength and rehydrate my tired body. I even went to extent of pouring cold water from the stream to my head and whole body to cool off and dip my legs to the flowing water. My decision to rest, re-hydrating, taking a dip to the cold water, and eating my packed meal gave me the strength to run all the way to the AS3. It took me another two hours to reach AS3 from the Peak/Turn-Around Point.

I knew already at this point that I could no longer improve my previous time of sub-8 hours! Instead, I took some time to talk with my friend, Joma Sison, who was manning the AS3, and eat some food served at the Aid Station and drank the Sprite soft drinks he reserved for me! Thank you, Joma for being there despite the inclement weather and slippery/muddy road! At this point, I was already raining and my feet would compete with the flowing water on the trail as I ran down towards Barangay Sapang Uwak. I have to stop and refill my hydration bottle for the next two Aid Stations and pour some water to my head and face! There are also sections of the trail that I would run through some deep and shallow muds. And that is part of the fun and challenge in trail running.

From the second to the last Aid Station to the Finish, I knew that my quads will be challenged on those steep downhill road towards Barangay Sapang Uwak and I was prepared for the beating! I continued to run and took some small successive steps on those steep portions of the road until I reached the flatter sections at the center of the Barangay. From the steel bridge, I knew that I have at least 1.5 kilometers to the Finish Line!

MF 42 06

Approaching The Finish Line! (Photo By Glairold Recella)

I finally crossed the Finish Line in 8:58:30 hours, which is One Hour slower that my previous time! My performance is still on passing grade, considering that the cut-off time for the event is 10 hours! Aside from the inclement weather; muddy and slippery condition of the trail; extended rests on the stream; and staying more time in the Aid Stations, I think my age is catching up on me! However, I am happy that I finished this race; served as one of my training runs for a longer race in the future; and being the Oldest Finisher in this Badass Trail Running Event!

I highly recommend this trail running event to everybody but there is a need for a race-specific training schedule and workout for this event. A 3-month trail running schedule/training preparation with lots of elevation gain and downhill running would best prepare anybody to finish this event within the prescribed cut-off time of 10 hours.

Congratulations to Atty Jonnifer Lacanlale and his Team for coming up on this yearly Badass Trail Running Event. It is one of the well-organized trail races that we have in the country today!

Running Gears:

The North Face Orange Shirt; The North Face Cap; The North Face Trail Shorts; AMIHAN Go Lite Race Belt; Taiwan’s Beast Hydration Bottle; The North Face Compression Socks; New Balance Vazee Summit Trail Shoes; Adidas Gloves; 2017 UTMB Buff; San Diego 100-Mile Endurance Run Buff; Miami Sunglass; and IPhone5

Nutrition: XO Coffee Candies; Cloud9 Chocolate; SkyFlakes Condensada; Goya Chocolate Pops; and Meal Pack

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Miyamit Run

20 09 2013

Are you joining this Sunday’s Clark-Miyamit 42K or 22K Trail Run? If you trained on the roads and not on the trails with the same elevation profile with that on the race course, I bet you will have a hard time catching your breath as you go up to the peak of Mt Miyamit and/or complete the course with more strength to reach the finish line. Moreso, if it will be your first time to visit the place on race day.

The course is basically an “up and down” course. Ultra trail runners usually call this kind of mountain running as “Fastest Known Time” or “FKT”. The faster you reach the peak of the mountain and then going back to where you started, the better and is the way to gauge your speed and strength in mountain trail running.

Start & Finish Area @ Ayala Construction Site

Start & Finish Area @ Ayala Construction Site

Last month, at the height of the latest typhoon that hit the area, I had a chance to run through the course for the nth time except for the last 4 kilometers before the peak of Mt Miyamit or turn-around point of the race course. My companions and I were not able to go through the trail due to thick vegetation that covered the trail and strong water on the streams that we have to cross.

We ran through the course for almost 34 kilometers in distance which took us 9 hours, to include our “pit stops” along the way and late lunch at the foot of Miyamit Falls. We also went to the View Deck for “photo-ops” and rest.

Mt Miyamit Elevation Profile (From CM42/22 Website)

Mt Miyamit Elevation Profile (From CM42/22 Website)

I was surprised that there are already “movements” and construction projects at Barangay Sapang Uwak, the trailhead of the road/trail going to Mt Miyamit. I had to park my vehicle at the Ayala Construction Headquarters where I was able to talk to the Security Guards and requested for my vehicle to park thereat. The construction area is just near the Porac Exit along the SCTEX.

The first kilometer is flat and downhill and as soon as we reached my usual parking area near the small bridge before reaching Sapang Uwak, we had to go through a checkpoint which is being controlled and administered by another company. I was received by a former Philippine Army Officer who is now the designated Officer-In-Charge of the Security Guards manning the said construction area. After a brief conversation, we continued our run to the center of the barangay. The OIC knows me personally as we had been together in one unit in the Philippine Army.

First & Last Kilometer Of The Course/Run

First & Last Kilometer Of The Course/Run

From the center and populated area of Barangay Sapang Uwak, we run, jogged and hike all the way to the View Deck; after some rest, photo-ops, and eating some snacks, we continued our run to the peak of Mt Miyamit hoping that we could reach the turn-around point which is 10 kilometers from the View Deck. We did not reach the turn-around point and we need about 4.5 kilometers more. We have to turn-around when we could no longer see any trail due to thick vegetation. From that point, we went to the Falls and had our brief lunch and photo-ops. After our lunch, we went back to where we started.

Patience Is The Key To Reach The Top

Patience Is The Key To Reach The Top

Top View Of The Route/Trail Taken From The View Deck

Top View Of The Route/Trail Taken From The View Deck

Where Is Danin? Be Careful With This Landslide

Where Is Danin? Be Careful With This Landslide

Huts Made Of Banana Leaves

Huts Made Of Banana Leaves

Slippery Part To & From Miyamit Falls

Slippery Part To & From Miyamit Falls

Trio Los Bandidos @ Miyamit Falls

Trio Los Bandidos @ Miyamit Falls

For the benefit of those who will be joining this Sunday’s 1st edition of the Clark-Miyamit Trail Marathon & 22K Trail Run who have not visited or recon the place/route, I have the following insights:

  1. Looking at the Elevation Profile, whether you are joining the 42K or 22K race, it is an “up and down” or “FKT” run/race.
  2. Depending on your training and preparation of this race, take it easy on the uphills and make-up for the slower time that you register on the first half by running stronger on the last half.
  3. Always think safety during your run. There are places where the ground is slippery along the course/trails. Take time to hike instead of running along these slippery portions of the trail.
  4. This event is NOT a Picnic or Hiking/Outing for you to socialize with other runners. This is a RACE. However, in case of emergency or accident where a runner is involved, find time to assist or help the victim.
  5. Runners have a bad practice of consuming the whole cut-off time to finish the race. If you can finish the race faster than the prescribed cut-off time, please do so with all your remaining effort. The marshals and volunteers would like to go home as early as possible also.
  6. The tribe/locals residing on this mountainous location are “notorious” in asking money, food, or anything from visitors in the area. Be aware and know what to do.
  7. Apply trail etiquette and the time-tested “Leave No Trace” doctrine in this event.
Still Fresh & Strong As We Approached The Finish Line

Still Fresh & Strong As We Approached The Finish Line

I will be joining this race and I will be on a Race Mode. It means that socializing with other runners will be limited at the start and finish areas only. I will not engage in a lengthy conversation with any runner if one decides to run side by side with me. My feet and pace will do the talking, the same strategy that I applied when I joined the Pagsanjan To Majayjay 50K Road Ultra Race last September 1, 2013.

This race will again be a test and evaluation for my new training. My modest goal is to finish within the upper 50% of the total runners without any injury or “issues” during the race.

Good luck to all the CM42K & 22K runners! By joining this trail race, you are already a winner to me!

Keep on running!








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