It is safe to say that every runner’s dream is to become a marathoner. Running 10K or a half marathon is admirable but when you set goals, you want to aim high. 26.2 miles or 42 kilometres, the total distance that will take you from being an average runner to a marathoner, is the pinnacle of every runner’s career.
I finally had the chance to prove to myself that I could do it. That I can conquer my injuries from last year, my vices, the heat, and finish my first marathon. The road to this was not easy. It took me almost a year of on/off training to be ready. On top of work, smoking, and travelling, I somehow managed to finish! *happy happy joy joy*
This is my sister and I checking out the race route in Ayala Center where we picked up my race kit. I just flew in from Tacloban and realizing that I only had one day left until the BIG run did not do good for my nerves. I was freaking nervous! I did my carbo loading two days before the actual run since I didn’t want to be bloated on race day. The route was not familiar to me as I am a native of Tacloban and I haven’t been to SRP (South Road Properties) in Talisay, Cebu. But no matter, I thought, I just want to get this over with.
My sisters were up by 3:30 am to go to the Start line, while my cousin, was up by 2:30. I, on the other hand, was up by 1:45 am. 2 hours ahead of the gun start. I have a lot of pre-race rituals that I follow religiously: drink coffee, tie my hair well, put band-aids on my big toes, Salonpas on my ankles, fix my shoelaces, and putting petroleum jelly on parts where I could get abrasions. (I move really slooow in the morning so it takes a lot of effort to get ready. Hihi.)
When we got to the race venue, my Uncle and I had 25 seconds left to gunstart.
Wtf. We ran towards the start line and climbed over one of the fences to catch up. I had no time to be nervous. The race had already begun.
At first, I focused on the road and listened to my iPod playing slow songs. I wanted to start slow so I wouldn’t run out of air by the end. It was a bit distracting. People running, my headphones blaring, and my heart thumping. And then the strangest idea came to my mind. I started praying the rosary. This was the last thing I thought I would do. I love God but I do not qualify as religious by other people’s standards. (I will not elaborate why but it’s safe to say, I am far from what my Mom’s or relatives’ definition of what a Catholic should be.) So I started praying, one mystery after the other. When I did all 15 of them, I started all over again. Strange, but it calmed me. I have never fully understood the power that comes with praying until that moment. How I forgot about my leg starting to throb, the heat, the pressure, and the long way I still had to go.
It saddens me that they might close down post offices. I think there is something quite special about receiving something handwritten from a friend or a relative from another part of the world. Emailing and scanning can only do so much.
Sent postcards today for my loved ones in West Virginia, Washington, and Spain. I hope they arrive in time for Christmas. :)
My addiction to running is a given. But when the run is for a great cause, it makes it 5x better. Together with the Dalagan Tacloban event solutions, the City Government of Tacloban through its youth arm, organized LingkuRUN 2012 which aims to buy chairs for students in different public schools in Tacloban City. This was held last October 13, 2012 at the Magsaysay Grounds with 2 distances, 5k and 10k.
Of course I had to bring in my cousins who are getting as addicted as I am to running! :) Here we are patiently waiting for the run to start. It was held at night, a first for all of us!
They distributed glow sticks to all the runners to help identify everyone. Mind you, Taclobanons are not used to fun runs yet so we had to have something visible to be recognized by the race enforcers.
A few minutes to go and the race will start! :) I am so happy that I finally convinced my cousins to run with me here. It would have been really sad if I ran all my races alone. :( Chos!! Drama!!! Lol
And off we go!! My aunt took these photos while we were in the U-turn area and also patiently waited for each one of us at the finish line. Thank you Auntie Nini for the unwavering support! :)
From L-R: Me, Yves & Jarenz, and Jiokee who ran 5km
It was also Yves and Jarenz’s first time to run 10km, and I have to admit they were so funny talking about whether they could finish the run or not on the day itself, when during the registration they were like, “Hell yeah 10k! Piece of cake!” Lol. Love you guys! :p Good job! (They both clocked in at 1 hour 25 minutes. That’s what you call team work!)
This guy beside me is Cesar, I don’t actually know his last name but I met him halfway through the run, actually at the U-turn area in Coca-Cola, and he told me that he would pace me. At first I was hesitant. I mean, hello,
stranger danger! But then I realized that he was an angel in disguise because without him, I wouldn’t have clocked in a better time (my shortest so far at 1 hour 4 minutes), and would have gone lazy and started walking. So Sir Cesar, thank you! :)
I was a bit surprised to receive this! Yey! 2nd place 10k, Women’s division!! The 1st placer and I were actually less than a minute apart but I feel that I don’t deserve a top place yet since I still have to quit smoking. Hmm. Maybe next time. And hell, I look crazy funny in all my awarding ceremony photos anyway! Hahaha.
My super supportive house helper who guarded all our bags while we ran, and my Aunt, the official photographer. Thank you! :*
And of course my cousins, Alba Team Tacloban for being AWESOME. Congrats everyone! We did good!! :D
And Jiokee and Yves are looking into this for the future:
Hahaha! Go Jiokee! With more training and hard work, you can do it!
For more photos, you can watch the photo/video collection here.