Sunday, July 26, 2009

My Sunday Long Run (In Pictures)

After enjoying watching the last stage of the Tour de France , having my daughter Denise visiting on this weekend, I asked myself, to run or not to run? It didn't take long to find out, I laced up my running shoes, grabbed my hydration belt with water, and took my camera out of the house and saw this. Rain and thunderstorm!

With my camera getting wet from the rain I tried to take a picture of lightning in the sky but was not quick enough, noticed I was doing 5:30ish per k from my Garmin, so had to slow down,couldn't risk reinjuring the left calf injury. I stayed closer to the houses mostly running the pathways instead of the road. I didn't want to end up a roasted/barbecued runner in case there was lightning nearby. :)

Saw this father and son walking in the rain on the road, camera shot was blurry because it was really raining hard and the sound of thunder and lightning in the sky was becoming a cause for concern.

I decided to run in the nearby woods to avoid getting hit by lightning while in the open. I started reciting, "the woods are lovely, dark and deep, but I have promises to keep, and miles to go..." It's so funny how this old poem is retained in my sub-concious after being buried there since high school.

It was so peaceful, quiet, with just the sound of raindrops falling on the leaves and ground, and occasionally the faint sound of thunder from far away. Brought back fond memories of my Tata Leon, (my Nana Eleng's farmer/fisherman husband)when I was a young boy vacationing in his rural farmland, holding his buri hat, smiling with his blackened teeth showing, looking up the dark sky , taking a deep breath at the smell of rain watering his dry rice fields.

As the rain fell harder poodles of water started forming on the pathway.

And more water!, I noticed both my shoes, including the inside were soaking wet, and it was so uncomfortable, with my socks all wet too, and hearing "squish, squish" every step I took. This time, I decided to change course, go home to change shoes and socks.

After a short return to my place to use the washroom, refill my water, change shoes and socks (didn't bother with the wet clothes) and consuming a banana, off I went out again and noticed that the rain had stopped although the sky was still gray.

Passed by a pond where people could watch geese, ducks and birds that frequent or live in the place.

It seems like wild flowers bloom in bright colors right after a rainfall.

I have to confess now, this where I go surreptitiously when I crave for hamburgers when the wife cooked only "healthy foods", vegetables , fruits, nuts. The trick is, to put gas in your car at the nearby gas station, and eat as fast as you can so you'll not be missed. :) Have to stop this, if serious about losing weight.

Markham is one of the older communities in Ontario, so in some areas, the architecture and design of buildings and homes go back to the 18th century.

First time I ran this street, in the interior, it was all quiet except for a few homeowners I saw tinkering with their plants in their front lawns..
Ain't this house so beautiful, it's front lawn and garden so simple and well manicured, that if it goes on sale now, I'd risk losing face and borrow money from my father in law so I can buy this house (ha ha, just joking)

Passed by the Main Street GO train station that goes to and from downtown Toronto. It had been more than 2 hours from the time I started running and the legs seemed to be holding good. Maybe, it's the photo taking that's keeping me unaware of the time and distance. I was starting to feel fatigued though at this point.

The sun and blue sky after the rain, only made it hotter and humid, I had to decrease my speed. Also, noticed I was breathing harder because of the humid air. The legs were feeling tired but otherwise no pain (no injured pain I mean).

Passed by a dentist's office in his home, with the rent of professional offices so high, this is practical specially in this recessionary times.
Ran out of water at this time. also felt hungry, as had my breakfast at 8 am and had only a banana during this run. This time all I could think of was food and water, and Jay and his boiled saba and Rico's hopia cubes crossed my mind for whatever reason. Must be missing Pinoy food . :)
So, more than 2 hours into my run, had to stop over at Tim Hortons for chocolate marble donut and an orange drink.




And it was a good decision to have a bite and a drink as it went warmer and warmer as the minutes went by. I was now running back home but even much slower because of fatigue. It was my intention to just run 15k today. But at this point I was pretty sure I would cover much more than that.

Saw this couple on a late Sunday date in their front yard gardening.

Yes, so right, I was just having the most peaceful long Sunday run at this moment, and my body (including the injured calf) seemed to be in harmony with the mind, spirit, surroundings and the whole universe. Hallelujah!

Amazing how an hour or more can change the color and sights in this same woods.
The poodles of water on the ground seemed to have all but disappeared.

Yellow and white wild flowers appeared to be rejoicing and praising God for giving them much needed rain in this hot summer day, like the runner who was passing by, feeling so blessed for his continuous recovery from his injury and getting more distance in this run than what he was hoping for.

Sorry, my friend I'm just too tired to play one on one at this time.

I figured out, I was so close to home anyway, might as well shoot some hoops with this friendly fellow. I tried a few three point shots, none went in. I tried medium range shots, maybe 1 out of 10 went in. I tried a few lay up shots and most missed, that's when I called it quits. Too late for a basketball comeback. I'll stick to running.

The picture says it all. I was so tired I just had to sit on the concrete floor on my front porch for a few minutes. Too tired even to stretch (I did it afterwards). I completed 19.3 ks total in 3:02. Thanks Dr. Labelle, and thanks to all the prayers and good advise from my friends, the Midsummer's Night 30k Run on August 22 is looking more and more like my next long race, God willing.


  1. Hi Bong. I wish I had a route like that. Been lazy lately. I donut made me hungry. Haha

  2. Welcome back, Bong! I'm glad the injury is gone, even after that 3-hour run.

    Oh boy. Kung ganyan naman kaganda ang tatakbuhan, there's no reason why one can't run (unless injured of course).

    How come I don't remember that poem when we went to the same High School? Absent siguro ako heh heh . . .

    Kakagutom naman ng donut. Makabili nga!

  3. Pretty good shots. This isn't my first time to visit your blog, however, this is my first comment. Can't just resist. Nice pictures. Nice scenery. I can't blame you for lacing those shoes... :D With a view like that?

  4. I'm beginning to look forward to your Sunday Long Walk or Run photos. So beautiful, gives me a glimpse into the world of Markham Ontario and surrounding areas. Lovely woods, beautiful houses. You are so creative in your picture taking. Loved the cloudy and sunny contrast that you showed by taking pictures of the same places.

    Rejoicing with you over your continued healing.

  5. Hi Bong, good to know you're back, and the injury is pretty well, (hinay-hinay pa rin muna). Here's another inspiring story from you, congrats. Your place is full of admiration. How's the lottery, tumama ba?

  6. Hi Mayi. Thanks. My dream is to just do leisurely runs in our homeland, maybe in the countryside or some rural neighborhood that's far from the hustle and bustle of big cities, and stop by a sari sari store for a cold drink of coca cola or pepsi, and have a chat with some older people playing dama on a bamboo bench. Sorry, I'm daydreaming again. :)

    Hi daytripper. I still think the Philippines offers the best natural wonders in the world, white sand beaches, rainforests, mountains, rivers and lakes, that us runners could enjoy after or during long runs. If only us, Pinoys can conserve and even replenish our natural treasures, we'd be the envy of the world.

    Hi Nora. Kay Miss Ignacio yata sa English subject I had to memorize the poem. I remember Mrs. Crisostomo teacher ko rin and Mrs. Ventura. Were you under any of them at UE High?

    Thanks Runningdiva for the nice comment. I also love reading your blog, and enjoy the pictures. I think I also visited a site where I heard your beautiful angelic voice. Tell me if I'm right.

    And to you Lidia, my many thanks, I always attribute my getting better (my calf muscle strain injury) from you who I think has more influence with Him than any other person I know. Please continue to write your very inspirational posts that all of us enjoy reading and which give us lessons and food for thought useful in our everyday living. Peace and joy to you, your family and friends.

    Hindi pa puede mag-retire Vener, ha ha. Yes, I'm feeling better and better everyday, and it's because hinay hinay lang muna ako. I just saw Dr. Labelle this morning and she thinks if I continue with the therapy and treatment, I should be alright in another week or two. If only I could be just like you who is a natural runner who can run fast and not be injured, then I wouldn't have to slowdown my training like this. Take care bud, and enjoy the rest of the week.

  7. Welcome back Bong! It's neat what a couple weeks of rest can do . Now don't go overdo it just yet.

    Thanks for the pictures. My wife watches a lot of HGTV here in the States, and we see a lot of Toronto on various shows. They never show us things other than homes and neighborhoods though, so it's neat seeing the parks and trails.

    And Tim Hortons! Oh how I wish we had those down here in Southern California. Last summer my kids and I drove from St. Catherines to Ottawa. Nothing like some Timbits and coffee to help the miles pass!

  8. Hi Glenn. You are right, the rest surely helped, and I can't be too excited and overdo it. Bringing with me the camera keeps me so busy appreciating my surroundings that it helps me forget about the long distance I'm covering, and also forces me to slow down. Both good for my problem calf.

    Tim Hortons is a welcome fixture in every busy corner of cities and stop over places in the countryside here in Canada. I think its coffee, sandwiches, soup and baked products and donuts are comparable if not better than its competitors in the rest of the world. Lucky us, indeed. Enjoy the running and stay injury free.

  9. I am so excited to see your back running and the break didn't effect your fitness - great distance!
    I feel like I am starting all over again.

    I love the photos you post, where you live is so pretty

  10. Thanks Sharon. I'm glad to know that you're slowly getting back to running again without pain. If we continue to be patient and just gradually increase our training distance, there is a good chance we'd be able to finish our first marathon this year.

    I love my place but I still miss my homeland a lot, and my daughter Denise, who's backpacked and travelled Europe, and just visited Spain for a week told me how beautiful Spain is with it's rich history and friendly people. You're so lucky to be living there and seeing all these magnificent palaces, buildings, art and paintings, and being so close to other European countries. Take care.

  11. Excellent pictures, I ll bet that the run is so much pleasant and relax. It is almost like going to work, you have to run.

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