DaxMan's Journey
Come Run with Me!

Jan
02

January 2, 2010

Today’s run is a scheduled 26km long run in preparation for my Condura Marathon on Feb. 6, 2010. The last time I did a 26km, the last quarter of that run turned out to be bad because my pace dropped so bad.

I decided to try a new strategy – run 4mins and walk 1min then run then walk. My objective for Condura is to finish the race with a decent time and not suffer too bad.

After the run surprisingly I was able to maintain a 7min to 8min pace which is far better than the last 26km that I did.

With a little over a month to go before race day I am probably going to do this strategy. I still have 2 29kms, and 2 32kms before I taper off. Let us see how my time improves.

Pre race meal: 2 bananas, 3in1 coffee
Run hydration: 2 Powerades Cherry flavor
Snack on 3rd hour: 1 Goya Dark Chocolate bar

Route: Around Rancho 1, 2, and 4

Time: 6:30AM to 10AM

May
15

For the month of April, I had the opportunity to take a vacation in the US together with my family. It was a 3wk trip taking us from LA, Maryland, Texas, and Finally back to LA. I brought along my running gear with me so I can still sneak in a few kms while on the road. At first I was hoping to run on very place we visited and every state, but it seems there would be many challenges like where to run, do you have enough time, and WEATHER.

When we arrived in LA, adjusting to the time zone from Manila made it difficult for me to run. I would rather spend the time with family and friends. When we went to Maryland, I can’t handle the weather there. It was too cold during the mornings.

Finally I was able to run my first 10k in Virginia. I braved to cool morning breeze and ran outside and towards the lake nearby. It was a cool 10K but I hardly broke sweat even if I had a thick sweatshirt on. When we got to Texas, I was able to to sneak in a total of 20kms on two separate runs. I explored my sister’s community going towards the various parks. When I saw the running paths and lakes it was as if I died and went straight to runner’s heaven. Running paths were along the path’s of their community lakes. One big lake in Cinco Ranch if i am not mistaken is around 7kms. You might say that the running fatigue slowly drifts away while you are admiring the view. No wonder certain websites say the communities in the area have a decent running groups. How I wish there would be places like those here 🙂

I also finally decided to run without listening to music. Yup its time listen to your surroundings, the environment, the birds chirping, cars, jeeps, and MY BODY!

Mar
26

The Globe Run for Home 2010 will be my 3rd 21K for 2010, and my 2nd for the month of March. The race route features a start at the center of Makati’s Central Business District – the Ayala Triangle Gardens, and will pass thru the CBD, the Greenbelt Mall, make its way through Fort Bonifacio via the Kalayaan flyover, to the Heritage Park and back to the CBD.

The race start was at Ayala Ave fronting Ayala Triangle. We were there early anticipating the parking problems which were quite far from the assembly area. Getting there 45mins before the start allowed us to be relaxed and loose before gun, start enjoying the company of friends and taking advantage of that stretching session by Fitness First. Globe Tri Team’s – Elmer Santiago, Leo Boyles, Rommel Narciso, Marlon Narvaez, Vanessa Aguirre, and Christian Uichico were all at the start waiting for the gun. The next time I will be seeing them is at the finishline.

At 5:20AM the 21K runners were sent off. It was a relaxed pace going down Ayala Ave towards the Greenbelt Mall. The greenbelt mall route featured the runners going down a tunnel – how urban can you get. From Makati Ave runners made their way to Fort Bonifacio via the Kalayaan flyover. I was pacing with officemates – Paolo Endaya, Maui Fransico, and Mark Aragones at this point. By the time we reached Gil Puyat, Mark had to take a bathroom break and was dropped. Maui decided to attack the flyover so that left Paolo and I pacing each other. Both of us continued the steady pace till we reached Bayani road. At that point it was my turn to do a bathroom break so from 4 it was all men for himself.

Before entering Heritage park, the guys that I saw already on the way back were Elmer, Cross, Marlon, and Leo at approx 1 min intervals. The Heritage park loop of the race was the longest so far of all the races that featured the cemetery. Approximately 3kms were done inside the park.

After existing Heritage I knew I was already at the back of the pack again because of the thinning line of runners. My mindset was to maintain a steady pace all the way back to the CBD. If I slowed down some more, the extreme heat at during that day would probably really zapped me out.

By the time I have at Gil Puyat again, it seems I will not break 3hrs again. But after passing the last km. mark, and seeing the time, technically it is still possible. As all runners would do during the last stretch it is just all about digging deep and giving it all. Who would know if your legs would cramped up, and your knees blow, good thing mine did not. Upon seeing the clock at the finishline I was surprised to see a time of 2hrs 54mins. This was the first time I broke 3hrs. The race is a redemption from the back hurting 21K at Unilab just 2weeks before. It must be the new shorts I was wearing hahaha. I guess the next target time to beat is going below 2hrs 45mins! Got to shed some more lbs!!!




Split Times:

KM Mins/KM Location
1 6.46
2 6.45 Makati Ave after passing Ayala Ave and Penn
3 6.38
4 6.56 On Kalayaan Flyover
5 7.13
6 7.3 5th Ave going towards Mckinley Ave.
7 6.45
8 6.3 Top of Bayani Road going down
9 7.29
10 6.42 Entrance of Heritage Park
11 7.39
12 10.21 Half of Heritage Park loop
13 7.44
14 7.22 Bayani Road on the way back
15 7.28
16 7.2 5th Ave near Essensa
17 7.32
18 7.59 32nd St. near Home Depot
19 7.47
20 10.24 Gil Puyat After Kalayaan Flyover
21 7.54
22 7.42 Paseo de Roxas

Pre Race Meal: Coffee, 2 bananas, 2 Glasses of Water
Post Race Meal: Northpark with Theo, Janelle, NickyT, and Millet
Race Hydration: Lots of Powerade and Water, 2 Hammergels – apple cinamon & Banana

Mar
12

The Unilab Run for Wellness 21k was my 2nd 21km race for the year. I signed up for the race trying to make up for a bad race feeling which I got from the Century Tuna run which I felt I was short changed. The race would also make me run parts of Fort Bonifacio that I haven’t gone through like going down and up Bayani Rd, and running inside Heritage Park (a memorial park). My target for the race was to make 2hrs 50mins. This would be better than my first 21k of 3hrs 4mins in Condura.

I was at the starting line 45 mins before the start. This gave me time to be relaxed, meet friends, and do the normal leg stretches. However somehow I forgot to do stretches for the back. hmmm. The start of the race I was pretty ok. I was maintaining a steady pace with some of the guys in the office. I was thinking if I keep this pace all throughout the race, I would probably make a 2hr 45min time. That will be great improvement.

On the 8km mark, somehow I felt my lower back starting to hurt. I gave a sudden yell, which prompted some runners to look at me. A few secs a runner was already approaching me asking me if I am ok. I gave the thumbs up saying I am ok and will be fine. So now that pain on the back bothered me from km 8 to the finish.

From that moment on the 8km mark, my pace slowed down, and soon runners were already passing me, some 10k runners were even swallowing me up. It would be the first time I would do a run walk strategy, and squeezing in some back stretches during the walk part. The plan to finish a sub 3 was scrapped, and the alternative plan was just to finish the race. I finished the race at 3hrs 4mins again.

Lessons Learned:
1. Do stretches legs and back every pre race
2. Drop that belt bag which includes a celphone. That bag probably added weight on my waist.
3. No more carbo loading the day before. I would end my carbo load atleast 2 days before the race.

Pictures below are courtesy of photovendo.

Feb
21

With all the marketing hype this race generated, the Century Tuna Superbods turned out to be the race that garnered the highest number of participants – 11,000 runners all converging at BHS! For some strange reason this race didn’t turned out all awesome for me:(

Cons:
1. We arrived at BHS at the usual 4:45AM but to my surprise the nice parking slots were all filled up. We had to settle for an alternative parking slot.
2. The all race events started 15mins in advance. When I arrive at the coral, the 10k guys are already out 😦
3. A stupid race marshal directed 10k runners to a corner which is contradicting to the race route. I finished the 10k at a disappointing 1hr for 7.89kms.

Pros.
1. Plenty of “eye-candy” at the water stations!
2. New route of going down the international school loop.

Some of the un-lucky stuff that happened to me:(
1. parking problem
2. I did not start the 10k on time
3. I lost my nike+ censor
4. My race was cut short by a stupid marshal
5. I was still nursing a cold and cough
6. I forgot that timing chip in the car
7. Forgot the batter of my vidcam!

Century Superbods was just treated as another regular build up or LSD in prep for the upcoming Globe Run For Home! That would be my next 21k I hope!

Feb
20

Today was my first day of swimming lessons! Yup! I decided to enroll in Georgetown’s Swimming Club in Marikina, and take 12 correctional lessons from coach Joel Villa.

Georgetown is just less than 2km away from home so I decided to jog to the place. I was supposed to meet Leo Amistoso (old neighbor) by 6AM but the darkness of the roads and HBO (again) prohibited me from getting out of the house till 6:15. The jog took me only less than 15mins, when I arrived they said “ok change up and hit the pool”. Luckily the jog gave me a chance to warm up already, and this made the water not that cold.

The basic drills for the day included flutter kicks, and kicks with arms all with the kickboard. The lapses for the day totaled 40 laps on the 25m pool. That’s a hard 1k for the day!

Coach said “have patience, it will come”!

Feb
14

The 21k medal arrived via courier in the office last February 10. This was what it’s all about!

Feb
09

Finally the day of reckoning has arrived.   It’s Sunday February 7, 2010, the day of when I would run 21Kms in the Condura Run Half Marathon.   The route is from Bonifacio Global City, down Gil Puyat Ave., get up the Skyway down to the toll gates in Magallanes, and go back.

Pre-Race

Breakfast for me was only 3 bananas, a cup of coffee, and a glass of water.  My gear was all packed up the night before.  To avoid traffic and parking problems we decided at home to leave the house at 3:00 AM.  We got to BHS (Bonifacio High Street) just in time to see my 42k buddies warming up.   The 42k was to start at 4:00AM while my 21K was to start an hour later.

Fireworks to kick off hostilities

By 4:30 AM the 21K program started.  To pump up the participants lively music was played and hip hop dancers entertained the runners.  A minute before the start, there was a fireworks display and soon the countdown to the start was on.   3…..2……1……….    During this time I was just relaxed at the back of the pack and slowly walked my way to the line, and synched my watch.   Game plan is a slow 9km/min till the 10K mark, and an 8Km/min pace going back.  This should bring me to the target of less than 3hrs for 21k.

Running in the dark

It was still pitch black darkness during that 5AM start.   I slowly paced myself at the back of the pack during this time.    When we reached Serendra turning towards  32nd St.  there was a guy in an Elvis costume giving high fives to all runners.    This is one of the many gimmicks the race organizers have for the day.   I thought the pace was slow but upon checking the Nike data, it registered a quick 6kms./min.   They say you can’t control the pace at the early stages of a race because you still have fresh legs and you will be pulled by the other runners.  As always I was listening/praying the Glorious Mysteries (Sunday) on my IPod.  Upon reaching the front of Home Depot Jay Delfin was there giving a “Go Dax” greeting.      By the time I reached the Kalayaan flyover going towards Buendia, I already finished the 5 mysteries and its back to regular music programming.      Fortunately a cool “That’s just the Way It Is” by Bruce Hornsby played at this time giving me that cool push.   It was still dark while attacking that flyover, and thoughts of getting an early injury crosses your mind, so I was extra cautious, always looking at the guy in front of me, if he trips over a pothole or something.   I decided to run in the center of the road at this point (where the lane markers are) thinking that the center of the road is the most less stressed part of the road.   After this noticed several runners following.

By the time I reached the crossing of Gil Puyat and Makati Ave, I followed several runners to the bathroom of the gas station.  This is a mistake because the bathroom is located at the 2nd floor.   We all realized this mistake too late.   After that quick pit stop I was back again on the road, this time pacing with two other runners who also came from Petron.   One runner was doing a 42K race so soon he decided to increase his pace to catch up with his group.

Extra Cool Stuff

What made this race fun was the gimmicks and extra stuff that the organizers made to support  the participants during the course of the race.   Upon reaching the intersection of Ayala Ave and Gil Puyat, wet and cold sponges were being distributed to runners.   I took advantage of this rubbing the sponge on my arms, nape, and legs.

Upon reaching the left turn going towards Gil Puyat and Estacion, a fire truck was showering the road with cool water and to some runners this was still a welcome treat.

And I have to say there were a lot of water stations along the route.   I estimated it around every 2kms there was a water station.

The Skyway

By 6:00AM I was already on the way up the skyway up ramp.   This is the start of what all participants were waiting for – the experience of running the skyway.   My pace at this point was around 8 mins to 9 mins per km.   Soon  I was enjoying the experience, it was a cool run with the sunrise at your left, and no cars and traffic to bother you till the Magallanes toll exchange  which was the 21km turn around point.

Seeing Friends Along the Way

I was sticking to my game plan of running the race at my own pace.   I really don’t mind being passed as long as I can still see a few heads at the back at this there were still a lot.  By the 10Km mark, approaching the turn around, there were already runners heading back, both from the 42 and 21 categories.   Among the guys I saw and greeted were guys from the office – Cross Arreco (who was blazing his first 21k), Jun Visbal, Maui Fransico, Edwin Ylescupides and Team Super’s Javy Olives.   If High Fives were not exchanged words of encouragement and trash talk were shouted!  Split time on the turnaround was 1 hour 24 minutes.  I am six minutes early.

The Javy Olives train, who was using the 21k as a training run,   is running a 33k distance.  He will be   going back and forth the skyway to complete this.   Javs passed me a total of 3x during the race.  Two times on the skyway, and the last one along Buendia on the way back fronting  Jaguar.

The Long Gil Puyat Road Going Back

I managed to get off the skyway around 7:15.   That is a total of 45mins to get back to BHS and beat that 3 hr cut off.

Upon reaching Gil Puyat, may kumpare Jay Delfin was already in full battle gear waiting with his mountain bike.  He committed to pace me during this route back to bhs since October last year.  He is also gearing up for a Biggest Looser Challenge in his office.

After a few meters, we were greeted by the first aid station of Takbo.ph.   There were a lot of cheering supporters, bananas were distributed, and even a pain reliever spray was given to runners.   They were even willing to give a quick leg massage.

After crossing again the Gil Puyat and Ayala intersection, a cold sponge was again being distributed.   This was a very welcome treat since the sun was already in its full glory and temperatures were already rising.   Then it’s back to the slow grind.   I was already doing a pace of 9mins/km.   At this point mathematically I will not make the target 3hrs I have mentally set.   But no harm done,  I will make the 3hrs 30min cutoff with a lot of time to spare.

Before reaching the foot of the Kalayaan flyover (final hill)  Jay went ahead and said he will meet me at the other side.   Now I am already cautious again because the legs started giving signs of tightening.   At this point this was already beyond the farthest distance I did during training.   My longest practice run was only 16km, and I am beyond that now.   I am already thinking that the last week of training that I skipped might be a bad mistake and I tapered too early.   I still decided not to walk the Kalayaan flyover, and instead continue on a very slow jog.   I did not train on a run-walk strategy and I am sure not going to start now.

Don’t Stop Till You Get Enough!

By the final 2kms, true enough no muscle cramps came, but the pace was getting to be slower.   Funny thing the ipod played – MJ’s Don’t Stop Till You Get Enough.  This reminded me of my son Aisaac who idolizes MJ, and yes I better hurry up because they are all waiting at the finish line.

400 meters to go,  I switched off the ipod and decided to just relish the final moment.    At this point me and Jay parted ways.   I tried inviting him to breakfast after the race but I guess he had prior commitments.

It’s Done!

Approaching the finish line you are greeted by a lot of cheering supporters and upon crossing that line, IT’s Just Too Sweet!   What you prepared for the last 4 months was all worth it.   Among the noisy crowd I was able to hear the distinct call of Daddy by Ais.   Maybe it was enjoyment seeing me or they are just hungry because they have been waiting for almost 3 hours now.

21K Half Marathon done in 3hrs 2mins.   Reward to myself was all the breakfast I can eat of rice, scrambled eggs, Danggit, Corned Beef and 2liters of water.   After lunch it’s a cold San Miguel Super Dry.  Ayos!

Credits:

Sherry  and  Ais

Lolo Nonong, Lola Portia, Mama Linda

Si BRO at Mama Mary

Jay and Apple Delfin

Chuck Maceda for pimping this sport to me!

Elmer Santiago for the use of his CR!  Alam mo na yun pre!

Globe Tri Team

Globe Runners Club

Runners World.com

Nike Plus

New Balance 749

Apollo Petroleum Jelly

GU Energy Gels

Mizuno and Nike Apparel

IPod Nano

All Artists and DJs on my playlists

and YOU my dear friend who read all the way up to this point!

Jan
31

These are the stuff  I would be running with next week 🙂  It’s the full battle gear

1.  Orange Shirt from Mizuno (size Large)

2.  Running Shorts from Nike

3.   New Balance 749.  Bought October 2009, with a mileage of 400+kms

4.    Ipod Nano with loaded playlists

5.   Ankle support

6.  My socks!

7.  A digital watch. That watch should say 1hr 30mins on the half way point, and at the most 3 hrs after the race!

8.  the cap

9.  Nike plus gear to record the mileage

10.    All to Jesus through Mary!

11.  Two GUs.  One to take after the halfway point, and one when I get hungry during the homestretch

12.    and something to rub on the legs after the race!

Thank you Ais for modeling the stuff!

Jan
13

It is only 24 days before my Condura 21k, but my stuff are already slowly acting up strangely.

1. My Ipod Nano has been behaving on and off lately. It is the 2nd time in the week that I had to reformat it. I hope it survives till Feb 7. Its quite unfortunate that I missed loading up my recent mileage in nikeplus.com, i would have placed significantly in some of the challenges i have entered into. One long run that was not uploaded was a recent long run in Ateneo of 16km, my longest so far.

2. The out-soles of my shoes are slowly disappearing. The running store I went advised to still use it till Feb7 for the simple reason that my feet are already comfortable with the shoes. It would be unwise to change shoes at this late in the ball game.

By the way, to mark my first 21k half marathon, a new mizuno pale orange shirt was bought!

This week’s training schedule is on relaxed mode. Only 3 runs of 8km each at a very relaxed pace!