Surprise, surprise is how I should summarize this because I was not really planning to run here but my very generous friend sponsored me a kit. I also viewed this as a perfect training run for an upcoming longer distance race and because my kit was for Sub-3, I really planned to take my time to complete the whole distance.
This was also my first long distance race after Kasama Run held last September. Read on below to know more about my run in Pinoy Fitness 21K Challenge 2017 last November 5, 2017.
My usual running buddies, Tristan and Pyx were included in the Sub-2 wave (meaning, they have to complete the whole 21KM in two hours or less) which had an earlier gun start from mine. Nonetheless, we found time to meet up before the start of the race to wish each other a safe and fun run.
After the gun start for Sub-2, I was left wandering around the area while waiting for my wave’s gun start. It has been a long time since I last ran a long distance by myself. I got so used to running with my friends that I felt nervous running alone again. But because the cut-off time for me was longer, it gave me the assurance of being able to run in a relaxed pace.
My wave’s gun start was at 4:15AM and as soon as it started, I tried to look for a pacer in front of me similar to what I did during races when I ran by myself. I started fast at first, finishing a kilometer between 5-6 minutes but I slowed down at the third kilometer because I thought that I should have a slower pace if I wanted a real long slow distance (LSD) run which worked for me because I lacked training.
Sadly, the route was just several loops around SM by the Bay so I had a total of six bands (which marshals give every U-Turn). Because I lacked training, I found myself struggling to maintain my pace as I observed my raising heart rate. Whenever I felt first signs of chest pain, I slow down immediately. I surprised my heart, I thought.
What I also noticed as I ran were the number of runners who had complications along the way. Some had cramps while others were being assisted by marshals for whatever it was they were feeling. I was not able to see this, but Tristan and Pyx saw a man lying down along the bridge route. They said that medics tended to him but the number of people who required medics during that day was the most I have seen in any running event I have been to. (Note: The man on the bridge suffered from a mild heartattack but is already recovering thanks to the medics who acted quickly.)
On the last kilometer, Tristan messaged me to ask where I was. I told him that I was on my last kilometer and him and Pyx should already wait for me at the finish line to take my photo. But about 200 meters before the finish line, I saw Tristan and Pyx waving at me while taking a video, apparently. It was very supportive of Tristan to accompany me up until before I reached the finish line.
I crossed the finish line and unexpectedly received a gold medal (given to the first 300 finishers of each wave). Afterwards, I went to claim my finisher shirt (thank you to Matthew who traded his XS shirt to my L. Lol.) and bag before I went to find Tristan and Pyx.
What is nice after every run is that I get to meet different runners who generally bring a positive energy around me. Thankful to this run for I was able to make new friends as well.
And finally, before my running buddies and I left to eat breakfast, we did not miss the opportunity to take a post-race photo together, as always.
For the full results and photos from the race, click here.
Thank you very much to all the photographers as well for being a pill of energy to all the runners and for patiently taking and uploading all the photos!
And now all that is left is to prepare for my last two(?) long distance runs for the year. And while I am still on track to fulfill my goal for the year of reaching greater distances, I am also looking at training further to be able to run faster.