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I am a Bicolano by birth and choice. By any standards, I am a slow runner but I like it that way. I look at running as a healthy and exciting way to make a difference. Together with my fellow runners from our family, school, office and the community, we use running to give back..

September 30, 2012

REXONA RUN 2012: Outrunning myself?

The Rexona Run is one of the more popular half marathon runs in the Philippines. Since its first edition in 2010, this run has grown a substantial following among the local community. 

For the 2012 edition which happened last September 23, 2012,  the race organizers led by Rio de la Cruz  had an innovation which I think was a first in Metro Manila. They had a relay portion where two runners could collaborate to finish a half marathon. This was a big hit as evidenced by 150 participating teams  in the relay. 

83nean runners before the start

Of course, the 83nean runners who participated in Rexona Run 2012 did not go for the relay. We  hunger for mileage and it would be unthinkable for us to not go for a solo effort on 21 kilometers of pure joy. In this endeavour, we joined 2,807 solo runners. And lest we forget, we had our classmate, Ruben Fajardo,  to thank for giving 3 of us 83neans free registration.  Running is free.

Fards with fellow navymen

The battle cry of Rexona Run 2012 is “Outrun Yourself.” We saw it in the TV commercials in the days leading to the event. We heard it from the master & mistress of ceremonies at the opening program who continually exhorted  the runners to go for sub-2 hours, even sub-1.5 hours. Thus, I was gung ho at the start of the race.  For the first 3 kms, I matched stride per stride the pace of my faster Batch 83 brethrens Fards and Ernie (Bob is a different story. He is one good outlier in our batch).

Then, my lack of training brought me back to reality. I could not continue the run without going for my customary Galloway walk break. Apparently, Ernie and Fards had a Galloway amnesia in the first 7kms of the race. Thus, I was left behind by the 2 and my kindred penguin, Ed, was not registered for the 21km run. For the next dozen kms, I was on my own and I gamely trudged on to the finish line.  

Route Map
With 2 kms to go, I found myself in the company of a favorite blogger, the Jazzrunner. I said “hi” and asked him if I could tag along. He was gracious with a smile and I got to run with him. A half kilometer before the finish line, I faded from his pace. 

I finished Rexona Run 2012 with a time of 2 hrs 39 mins. This is 7 mins slower than my Rexona Run 2010 finish time of 2 hrs 32 mins. Felt bad about it. Ano man kaya ini? Tulo ng taon na nagdadalagan, dai pa nangad ma break ang 2 hrs 30 mins sa half marathon. I guess I could point to my break from running for more than a month as an excuse. But susmaryosep, I don’t like giving excuses.

Racing for the finish line (Photo courtesy of Pinoy Fitness)

But then again, there is nothing like the sight of familiar and friendly faces waiting for a runner at the finish line. It has the power of stamping a smile on an otherwise agonizing and aging face. And in my case, it was the sight of Bob, Ernie and Fards waiting for me that did the trick on releasing the torrent of endorphins in my system.  

Showing off our finisher’s medals

Another familiar face that I got to see at the finish area was Vimz of the Kulit on the Run blog. I noticed that the organizers were proactive in designating separate claim tables for various sizes of finisher shirt.  Ever the optimist, I queued at the table for small size. I blurted to the lady attendants if it was the table for the sexy ones. They all had smiles and I laughed with them which caught the attention of Vimz who asked, “Is that you, Macky?”  This was icing in the cake for me.  Call it child-like or childish, but I get a sense of joy in being recognized. 

With Vimz
‘Twas a good run for me after all, this is 2012 edition of Rexona Run.

To reflect on it, I am reminded of the gospel (Mark 9:30-37) on that day when our Lord mentioned this introspective words, “If anyone wishes to be first, he shall be the last of all.” 

P.S.  The race results of my fellow 83neans are as follow :

Bob Castilla     2 hrs 19 mins (2010)
                       1 hr  47 mins (2011)
                       1 hr  43 mins (2012)

Ruben Fajardo  2 hrs 29 mins (2010)
                        2 hrs 22 mins (2011)
                        2 hrs 26 mins (2012)

Ernie Badong    2 hrs 9 mins  (2011)
    2 hrs 26 mins (2012)

Vicboy De Lima 2 hrs 32 mins (2010)
                        2 hrs 42 mins (2011)
                        2 hrs 39 mins (2012)

Felt better. We treated ourselves with kinalas at the Pan de Cielo Bakeshop.  

Ready to enjoy kinalas

After our kinalas meal (Photo courtesy of Ernie)

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