Sunday, November 1, 2009

A 10K Race A Day After Halloween

Trick or treat! 6 days before Halloween Yuki tried on this Minimouse dress that she wore last night. :)

I'm here at home just relaxing after running the Angus Glen 10k , a day after Halloween. My left knee (just below the kneecap) is sore and so is my left foot, and I don't know the reason why. I am one runner who always has something in my body hurting after a race, unlike other"natural"runners I know who could run another marathon a week after running one. Just like all my other 10k races, I went all out again to break the elusive 1 hour barrier. I failed again. I was however very much contented and happy with the result.

The last few days, I've been reading other runner bloggers' posts on their recent race experiences. I was very much touched by runners' accounts of poor organization in one supposedly international marathon in the home country and their courage, perseverance, resourcefulness to survive and finish despite the darkness, lack of marshalls and volunteers to guide runners and the absence of water/drinks in some water stations at the crucial distances of the race. I heard that some support vehicles for individual runners had to share their supplies to runners without support crew but others had to literally beg water from kind hearted spectators along the way. They ( the people who went out of their way helping the runners)deserve praise and admiration for being angels to our suffering runners. For a marathon, which generally has a cut off time of 6 and a half to 7 hours, hydration is very necessary and important. Lack of hydration to replace lost water in our system could lead to dehydration which in turn could lead to serious injury or death in more serious cases. Organizers of marathon races should understand this as basic in the sport of long distance running.

To go back to my race this morning, I woke up at 8 am after entertaining last night my nephew, his wife and their young children , who by the way just arrived from the home country a month ago to live here as immigrants permanently. The children have not experienced trick or treating on Halloween, so my daughters Marie and Denise accompanied the children around the neighborhood to knock on doors on Halloween night. The practice here is for every home to prepare candies, chocolates, chips, toys, children's books, other goodies and give them all away to children visiting your home on Halloween night. The children and even some parents or adult companions accompanying who watch over the kids dress in Halloween costumes. My nephews kids dressed as a pirate, Cleopatra, and a ninja (there were 3 of them). My pet Yuki joined them dressed as Mini mouse :). I stayed with them as a good host should be until 10pm when I said my good night, have to sleep early coz of my race tomorrow. Jojo took over and I could overhear the laughter of the kids and the adults downstairs as the kids checked their shopping bags overflowing with goodies. I slept like a log.

Back to this morning, I had breakfast with Jojo, Denise and Marie and in between sipping coffee and munching on my toasted whole wheat pita bread with cheese, we all looked at Denise's pictures of her travel to Istanbul and other parts of Turkey.

By 9:30 am, was thru with all the pre race preparations. Checked the temperature, plus 6 Celsius, so changed to shorts, one undershirt, one long sleeved technical shirt and a wind breaker vest. Decided at the last minute not to carry any water/gatorade bottles and hydration belt. Picked up smallest plastic drink container and filled it with gatorade. Then drove to the site.

At the Angus Glen clubhouse by 9:55 am where I picked up my timing chip. Noticed free Tim Hortons hot coffee, timbits on 2 long tables and about 20 pitchers of iced water on another side with disposable cups on the side (and the race had not even started for us yet). Julia, my 5 k clinic teacher from more than 2 years ago said hi. I shook hands with Francois and hugged Sylvia, 2 other runner friends. Had a chat with Jason (Boston qualifier) about his last ironman race and noticed his unique black casual Rockport shoes (which looked more like dress shoes)that he said he and a dozen other runners were to run with. He said he got the shoes for free and tried it on an 11k run and it felt comfortable. Shoes must be alright because Jason finished 13th out of 623 in 40:35. Greeted Keri and Deborah, ex-half marathon clinicmates, then Nette (Hanneli)(my running partner, who beat me by 25 minutes in our last marathon, got her this time around by a minute more or less, babaw ng kaligayahan no, :) joined us with her husband Fidel who was to run the race too.

10 minutes before the race, Nette, Fidel and I did a warm up run at the back of the clubhouse. Visited the washroom one last time as Nette and Fidel proceeded to the start area. Gulped in a cup of cold water as I saw by the clubhouse window runners already running after the start gun had fired. ran to the back of the field of runners and the race was on.

Ran the first 2ks in 11:45, 5k at 29:05 and faded (again) around the 7k mark. Water stations with plenty of provisions and volunteers were strategically located in the entire race course. Did not need to carry a bottle of gatorade. Ended up finishing in 1:01:21, another failed attempt to break the one hour barrier. High fived Deborah (51 minutes and change) and Fidel (59:58) and gave away my bib number to Nette for another friend to use for free lunch as I had to pass and go straight back home to have lunch with Denise, who was just staying with us till the afternoon.

Disappointed initially, but at the same time happy to improve my time over my last 10k race (the Francorun 10k) which I did in 1:05:59. Contented to better my time on my second Angus Glen 10k. My first was on a time of 1:02:42. We runners could always twist a failure into a triumph, ha ha.

My next race is the Whitby Waterfront 10k on November 22, 2009.


  1. Another good account Bong. Sorry about the injuries, I hope you'll get better in no time.

    Malungkot nga 'yung nangyaring races dito the past weeks, the results were dissappointing. Kaya siguro marami na ring filipino runners ang lumalahok sa mga marathons abroad, dumadayo 'ika nga, para siguro makatikim ng totoong international marathon standards.

  2. Got news for you - a "normal" runner does not run back to back marathons. Those folks are *freaks*!

    And why didn't you let me know about this race? I would have signed up and been there just for the Timbits! Timbits and Horton's coffee are two of the things I miss most about not going to St. Catherine's this past summer. Boo hoo!

    Great job on a nice race. You can't always run a PR, and especially since you recently did a marathon, your body is probably still recoverng.

  3. I'm really happy for you, Bong!

    I wish I had seen you after the race. Every RR person that I ran into looked really happy. I'm sure I was beaming as well. Even though I was just 11 seconds behind my PB for the half, I don't feel like it was a lost opportunity. I know that I left it all out on the road--at least a lot of sweat, anyway. So I'm still happy with myself.

  4. i would say you did good in this angus glen 10k, bong. from 1:05.29 in your last 10k to 1:01:21 is quite a jump. dahan-dahan lang, bibigay din 'yang 1-hr barrier na yan. just you wait and see. nice account, by the way. keep it up!

  5. Bong, you always beat me in shorter races but not in half and full yet!!!
    - Nette