Sunday, October 18, 2009

A 10K Run And Random Pictures Of Our City And Autumn

With the temperature close to 0 degrees Celsius, 10k Franco Run runners lined up to receive their bibs or register as early as 9:00 am at High Park, Toronto. I arrived past 9, big toe still sore, but after taking 2 advils , I was ready to go for a PR.

High Park, in the center of Toronto provides residents, visitors, nature and sports lovers a venue for picnics, rollerblading, biking, running or leisure walking with its hilly terrain and well maintained gardens, trees, lawns and trails.

I took some pictures of the beautiful surroundings, while looking for a portalet as I had to pee, but there was none, and the nearest washroom was a mile away, so did what runners are famous for in times of adversity/emergency, followed some other runners to the bush and did our thing.

With my co-worker friends Sarah,Shanna and Khalid, all running their first 10k race 7 minutes before the start. Missing in the picture is my friend and mentor, Monty who came and ran with his loving wife after a long lay off from running due to an achilles heel injury.

Running is a great equalizer, young or old, rich or poor, male or female, short or tall (Haile, the world record holder in the marathon is vertically challenged), everybody enjoys it's benefits, a healthy lifestyle, a fitter body and mind, the appreciation and enjoyment of nature and the friendship of good people with the same passion for the sport.
Toronto our main city in Ontario is a melting pot of races, on the drive home took a picture of a corner Mexican taco restaurant with a red tree on the right, only in Toronto.
Stopped by a traffic light at Bloor Street West, took a picture of two pedestrian ladies wearing different autumn attires.
Some Toronto buildings kept and restored their unique older architectural designs.

Another "old" building in Toronto.
Skyscrapers in the background while teams play soccer in a Toronto park. notice some trees starting to change colors.

Another part of the same park with big trees, thick vegetation, trails between it and the downtown Toronto skyline. We need one like this in the center of Manila so running enthusiasts, walkers, picnickers and nature lovers could de-stress themselves after the hectic, fast and stressful work week in the city. Central Park in New York City serves this purpose.

Finally got out of downtown Toronto, and while driving along Don Valley Parkway took some pictures of trees and vegetation changing into fall colors.

A relaxing and easy drive on the hi-way after an intense 10k run is a bonus plus of course listening to easy rock music from the 60's, 70's and 80's.

Residents of these condo buildings must be enjoying nature as these woods and trails are just right in front of their doorste

Enjoyed the sights and sounds of Toronto but Markham, my small but beautiful town is still my home and haven.

The entrance to my secret running trail in the nearby woods was very inviting but, have to be home for Jojo's sinigang, lumpiang sariwa and fried fish with chopped green mango, tomatoes, and onion waiting for me at the dining table.
I finished the race in 1:05:59, my slowest ever in a 10k race (this is my 4th). No, not because of my sore left big toe. Can't give that for an excuse. I felt a little pain but not enough to affect my time. The steep hills did it. The route was quite "easy" and simple . Run the same 5k route twice, that was it. The only problem was the first 2 and a half ks were steep downhill, and I ran them in less than 6 minute pace per k. The next 2 and a half ks were brutal, just continuously steep uphill climbs. I finished my first 5ks at 31 minutes and change. From then on, I knew that a PR was next to impossible, so just ran the best I could. Happy, contented, fulfilled, blessed, after finishing another race and seeing the joy in my friends' eyes for finishing their first 10k race.
My next race is on November 1, the Angus Glen 10K in Markham.


  1. Bong I would have headed home too instead of running for you wife's cooking. Sounds like it was healthy fare too. Nice city. Looks like you have recovered nicely from your marathon. Maybe it's time to add some hills in your runs.

  2. Whew! Sarap diyan sa lugar mo Bong, I wish meron din dito. We were again treated to an amazing journey from you place, thanks again for sharing. Mabuhay.

  3. Hi MJ! Glad you like the pictures too. As much as I enjoy running, I also like the social part of it and sharing some good/fun times with my friends. And as a typical Pinoy, I bring my camera all the time and take pictures of interesting places and subjects to share with friends, family, runner/bloggers and readers. Take care and happy running.

    Thanks Rick. Jojo is the most loyal (in truth, she's probably the only one, ha ha) fan to my running. She's been with me in the more than 2 and a half years of me running road races in the freezing cold of winter, rain, or heat of summer. She finally woke up to her senses and realized she couldn't always wait more than 5 hours for her slow husband to cross the finish line everytime he runs a marathon. She told me, Just take the car and come home after, I'll prepare you some good Pinoy dishes. The life of a running addict, eh. :)

    Hey Vener! Congrats on another strong finish and helping your friend finish her first marathon. Alam mo, I've visited a lot of places in the world but there is none as beautiful as our homeland. Kulang lang tayo ng will, discipline, leadership para manatiliing maganda, malinis at protektado ang ating natural wonders at lahat ng produkto na maganda sa ating kultura. Kaya pag sinasabi sa akin na masarap dito, sagot ko, oo nga, minsan, pero mas masarap pa rin sa sarili nating bayan. Inggit nga ako sa inyo dahil you can basically run a race every weekend sa Pinas dahil sa running boom diyan. Maybe someday, in the near future, I'd experience the joy of running a race in our homeland. And maybe try nilagang saging na saba if it really works, he he.

  4. Hi Bong, I read this last week but was not able to comment. I loved the pictures you shared. Such a beautiful place, and the autumn colors of reds and yellows! You are so blessed. I am sure it is already very cold over there. Below zero na at nights, di ba?

    I also loved the way you wrote your story, so peaceful, so contented. Never mind the PR, but you just did your best. That is the spirit that will help you survive all your marathons, I believe.

    Well, I am praying for your Nov 1 marathon right there in Markham. I hope you will be fit to do even better than all your previous records.

    How mouth watering was Jojo's sinigang, lumpiang sariwa, chopped mango and the other Filipino delicacies!

    I actually have a first cousin who lives in Toronto. Maybe you know him, his name is Noly Maceda... he's into computers.

    Well, this is all for the moment.


  5. I am not really a blogger but I am really eager to help a very good friend of mine (Teresa Nietes) find a former St Theresa's College QC Philippines classmate of hers - maiden name: Nora Jorge. Teresa Nietes and I were in the same class at the University of Santo Tomas, Class 1969.

    With some help from Google, I learned that Nora is married to an Emmanuel (Noly) Maceda. I believe they live in Toronto. I ended up here where Noly Maceda's name was mentioned by Crown of Beauty.

    If anybody knows and is willing to give me Nora or Noly's email or phone no., I can be reached at I now live in Calgary Albeta Canada.

    Bong, thank you for your blog site.

  6. Melba,

    Try this site to get in touch with Nora,