Previously...Two years ago when I first joined the Adidas King of the Road 2009, the 21k distance was still far fetched from my mind. During that time, the fear of 21k race due to my almost full body cramps from my first half-marathon attempt a decade back has kept me immobilized from joining longer than 10k distances. But after the race, I promised to myself that on my next race for Adidas KOTR, I would definitely join the 21K category.
Then the 2010 Adidas KOTR came, but due to surging registration fees and my incomplete attendance at the aNR (Adidas Nation of Runners) Sessions which should've been my ticket for a free race kit, I wasn't able to join and so I got left behind envied with the nice, black Adidas singlet for that year's feat. Unfortunately, the 2010 Adidas KOTR got hit with a lot of negative feedbacks which spanned from anything you could think of in a race. Well the 2009 Adidas KOTR also got some negative feedbacks due to the over-crowded expo (race kit claiming), but the 2010 series got the most hurtful stone throwed at.
And Now...This year's King of the Road, the fees are much higher at Php 1,050.00 for the 21K distance. But it was a good news upon learning that RunRio was given the hand as the technical race Director, so despite of the negative feedbacks from Adidas' previous KOTR events, this year's race managed to attract 11,567 official finishers combined (based from the overall official race result).
The race started on-time at 5AM for the 21K runners. Hydrations were also more than sufficient, with powerade, cold water, and cold sponge that kept the runners cool throughout the entire distance. I also heard that there were a handful of celebrities who graced the event, but I haven't seen them aside from Mr. Rovilson Hernandez who's already been a regular sight in many races.
Pacer DutyLast March, I paced a very good and close friend of mine (RunnerIshi) on her 2nd 21k and "farewell" race, we made it fruitfully successful to the finish line. Now as her welcome back race, I made a pact to pace her once again for this race as we are both on the same distance category.
Few weeks before this event, we've somehow put in a few training runs specifically two or three non-consecutive days in a span of three weeks, lol! Well the busy days of Christmas season is preventing us to spend more time with our trainings (Training Excuse 101).
Anyway, we arrived at the race venue with only 20 minutes left before the gun-start, so we both took the chance and small time that we had to slow-jog going to the baggage counter, and some random russian march, butt-kicks and high-knees from the baggage counter towards the starting line - enough to give us a good warm-up and some sweat. That's the kind of warm-up that I have been missing and haven't been doing for a long time.
So as we head-off after the gun-start, I tried to keep control of my own pace so that I won't be running faster than RunnerIshi whom I was pacing. Since RunnerIshi is naturally a positive splitter, I also have to keep watch and help her control her own pace. But it seems that the technique isn't effective because after 5 kilometers, she was already puffing hard and I was wondering if we have ran faster for that first few distance.
As soon as we reached the 7th kilometer, she can no longer sustain the slow-jog pace which I think was the same pace/speed as what we have started. It seems though that it's the opposite as RunnerIshi already looks like she has already covered more than 15km distance. She then admitted to me that she's getting stressed and pressured because of my constant watching of her running form (arms over-crossing, tight shoulder/neck, slouching, etc.), her breathing intervals, and our estimated arrival time with our current pace. Like a horse ready to give-up, she begged if I could just run without me coaching her too much about her way of running. I then realized that she maybe right, so I just kept my mouth shut and just ran a few meters ahead of her just to give her a boost.
Evicted PacerUpon reaching the 8th kilometer at 1 hour and 10 minutes or so, RunnerIshi gave me signal that I may go ahead so she could also concentrate on her own pacing and technique. After a few hundred meters, I obliged and bid her goodbye for the rest of the route.
It was already around more than 1 hour and 12 minutes elapsed time from the gun-start and we're still behind the halfway. Having been evicted from my pacer duty, I just decided to chase as much runners as I can. But I felt weak after reaching the foot of Buendia flyover at Kalayaan Ave. I was able to run the next 5 kilometer distance after 25 minutes (at 13.4km point) but I slowed more on the succeeding 6 kilometers which I covered for around 38 minutes, ending up to a finish time of 2:26:28 (gun-time).
|Thanks BroJRunning for the photo|
I still contacted RunnerIshi at the 11th km and after the U-turn slot at Kalayaan Ave. to check how she was doing. Since I no longer knew if she's still doing fine, I reminded her to stay relaxed, hydrated, walk as much as she feels needed, and not to forget to take her Stinger gels.
Still a Happy RaceThe crowd of runners near the finish line was so motivating. It seems like I haven't seen it for a long time. The Takbo.ph banner was already on the road a few meters away, waiting for a photo-op with the runners.
Just after I claimed my medal and lootbag, I went back to fetch and re-pace RunnerIshi. Found her running at the 18th kilometer point pacing with her "Mars" Michydo, and AR. Although, I wasn't able to pace them back for the remaining stretch since both my legs were already cramping, I just took a short cut and waited for them near the finish line. RunnerIshi managed to finish strong and also beat two of her previous 21k races, brushing off more than an hour from her 2011 CamSur and 4 minutes from her RunRio Trilogy 2011 Leg 1.
|Six30 Members (photo by: Czarina Atienza)|
Special thanks to Ms. Isa Sevilla of Green Bulb PR for my race kit, for all the people and organizations behind who made this race successful, the Six:30 running group, and for the photos care of ARC, BroJRunning, the Individual photog-runners, and etc.
Distance: 21 km.
Official Time: 02:25:39 (chip time)
Official Ranking: 1,062nd out of 2,461 Finishers
When: October 23, 2011.
Where: Bonifacio Global City, Taguig
Event: Adidas King of the Road 2011
You may also view the race results from this link or on this link.
2011 Adidas King of the Road Crowning News Release