Sunday, September 20, 2009

7 Days To My First Marathon

Thirty years ago, I ran regularly at the Quezon Memorial Circle in Quezon City to help me get better at playing my sport then, basketball. Never crossed my mind that 30 years after, I would be a runner and try to finish my first marathon 7 days from today.

My first try to finish a full marathon is just 7 days away .

I am excited, anxious but confident at the same time.

I think I've done everything physically and mentally possible to prepare for this race.

Today is the first day of the 18th and last week of my marathon training program. Yesterday was my last LSD training run, just 16k in 2:03:45, that was part of tapering period. The last 4 Sundays before today, I did weekend long runs of 30k, 30k, 32k, and 23k successively, the most mileage I'd done since I took up running seriously in 2007. I did a slow 6k recovery run this morning, and would be running 10k on Tuesday, 10k on Thursday, 3k on Saturday and then the big day on Sunday.

In all my long runs 30k or more I felt like I had nothing left in the tank the last few ks. I know that the real test would be from the 32k mark on because that would be new territory to me, I've never run longer than 32k. I read that most runners with a DNF result in a marathon were unable to continue because they "hit the wall" after the 32k mark but before the finish line. I pray that I be given the physical and mental strength to cover the last 10k and achieve my goal of finishing my first marathon.

I also hope and pray that my friend and running partner Nette, who'd been with me through thick and thin in most of the past 17 training weeks of the marathon clinic, heals and recovers from her glutes injury so she could still run the race with me on Sunday.

So, the next few days would be time to rest, relax, take it easy, try not to get injured.

What one helpful advise would a marathoner or an ultra runner give to a first timer like myself?

My next post will be my race report after the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon on Sunday. I wonder what the title to my post would be?


  1. wishing you all the best, my friend. go for it! and find the title to your next post somewhere in the euphoria of your finish. :)

  2. I'm back!!!! Dr. Labelle did her miracles once again. I did 16K yesterday at race pace. Felt great and for sure I will run the race on Sunday.
    - Nette

  3. Some words of advice:

    (1) No finish time goals! Concentrate on finishing. Don't concentrate on time.

    (2) Start out slow. Then slow down some more. If you feel good after 30K, then step it up a notch. Be mentally tough. You will experience things (physically and mentally) that you haven't experienced before. Go with the flow.

    (3) Fuel fuel fuel. By now you should have experienced the gels and/or carb supplememnts that work. Use them. 100 - 200 calories and some sodium every hour.

    (4) Nothing new on race day. Let me repeat - nothing new on race day. Same routine as you used to approach your long runs. Same clothing. Same shoes. Same socks. Did I say? Nothing new on race day.

    (5) Take your time and enjoy the sights and experiences. Let it sink in. You are doing something that 90% of the general population can't. Revel in your achievement.

    Finally - have fun and enjoy the experience. Remember - the race itself is just the reward. You have already achieved the accomplishment by training to get here in the first place. Best of luck!

  4. There is only one first time, so savor the experience. I wish you all the best :-)

  5. Wish you the best on your first marathon Bong!

  6. Congrats on getting through this gruling training leading up to the marathon. The hard work is done, and the race is the celebration. Since this is your first marathon, don't worry about the finishing time, it will be a personal best regardless. Good luck.

  7. i wish you all the best, my friend. may God keep you safe all the way to the finish!

    teka... is that you on the picture on top? or your dad? how young are you? if the picture was taken 30 years ago, then i'm only 2 years back then.

    nakaka-challenge naman... =)

    God bless and enjoy your first full marathon!