Sunday, May 30, 2010

Run for Q

It's the first run organized for a call center, by a call center. Qualfon, a global BPO and contact center, was at the helm at this morning's Run 4 Q.  Held at the Terraces in Ayala Cebu (start/finish line), the event featured 3K, 5K, 10K and 16K race categories.

I completed my 6th 10K run this morning.  Hit the sack earlier than my usual bedtime the previous night and got up early before my alarm went off.  I was poised to improve my PR.  Well, a few seconds would have been good but that didn't happen, not today.  It's the very awful start (perhaps!).

Overall, it was a good race. Congratulations, Q!

Saturday, May 29, 2010

The Fair Trade 2010 Run

The race gun was fired a bit late. Blame it on the rain. The early morning shower, however, did not dampen the spirits of enthusiastic runners at last Sunday's Fair Trade 2010 Run. Fair Trade advocates better trading conditions and the payment of higher prices to producers in developing countries such as the Philippines. The run-for-a-cause started at Asiatown IT Park in Lahug and proceeded to the streets of Salinas, Gorordo, Escario and Osmeña streets and back.

The crowd was a mix of sports buffs, volunteers, runners by different professions and a few celebrities. And the fun part - the event lived up to its promise.  Food and water flowed in abundance.  As an additional treat, some prizes were raffled off and lucky me, I went home with a candle-holder made of recycled materials, not bad. 

Next stop - Run for Q!

(2nd & 5th photo courtesy of

Friday, May 28, 2010

A Muse Called Melina

In Greek mythodology, a muse is any of the nine goddess daughters of Mnemosyne and Zeus.  They are  Calliope, Clio, Erato, Euterpe, Melpomene, Polyhymnia, Terpsichore, Thalia, and Urania, each of whom is regarded as the protectress of a different art or science.

In today's running scene, there is a modern-day muse and a source of new inspiration. She's called Melina. Known to some by her nickname Twinkle, Melina has become a refreshing sight in almost every race here in Cebu.  Hers is a sunny personality and charisma that never cease to bring a smile to anyone who sees her.  Up close, she's very approachable and friendly.  If there is a Darling of the Crowd award handed out each time (besides the costume merit), it rightfully goes to her, hands down.

The efforts she puts into the whole ensemble plus completing the whole race course is indeed a class act.  More than the colorful and themed outfits, Melina's firm commitment to fitness and healthy lifestyle is worthy of admiration. People go through great lengths to achieve a goal. If you're able to do that and encourage people along the way, that's double the achievement.

The Yellow Jersey dedicates this post to Melina.  Thank you for adding color and bringing renewed excitement to the sport.  For your infectious energy and positive spirit.  And most of all, for inspiring runners and making us believe that if you can run that far kakayanin din namin.  Maraming salamat.

See you on the road!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

7 and still counting...

Three days from today, it would be exactly two months since I ran my first race. "Run to the Clouds" with its unusual race course, elevation and unique characteristics, was without a doubt one tough test for a regular runner, all the more for a beginner like myself.  My only preparation prior to the March 21 run was my nightly visits to the red oval, spending countless hours on the tracks, trying to be physically ready for the extreme 8K run.  I could have picked a less challenging race for my initial try but I wanted to see myself transcend beyond my perceived limits.  And luckily, I did!  I did get past the finish line at 1:16:54.

They say there is always a first and it is always memorable. True.  And while firsts are consistently special, the second and succeeding runs are equally fulfilling and enjoyable. A great amount of endorphins is secreted each time. In the long run, it does not really matter whether you're running your fifth or tenth.  Once you get into the game, it just keeps on coming and number becomes immaterial.

In less than two months, I have completed a total of seven races: Run to the Clouds, Citirun, Takbong Urology, PIA 2010, Great Lapu-Lapu Run, 3rd Mandaue Run, SRP Sundown Run. At the rate things are going, this list will expand dramatically in the months and (hopefully) years to come.  And very soon, I will  appreciate every moment and just forget about counting.  

Seven races later, I can say with conviction that 3K, 5K and 10K runs are not marathons, that 2XU and CWX are running brands, and that bike shorts are different from tri-shorts.  I can easily translate lap measurements from meter to km to mile or define tempo and steady runs.  And from now on, I will never be lost in a sea of running terms and acronyms. I have yet to achieve my PB but so far, I'm happy with how my PR is progressing.

Seven races later, I officially declare myself a RUNNER.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

SRP Sundown Run 2010

The date was May 08, the grand launch for South Road Properties or SRP. It’s a long strip of road comparable to NLEX/SLEX in Manila or SCTEX (Subic Clark Tarlac Expressway) which was developed to make travelling to the South faster and more convenient. SRP also features a vast commercial land that is worth millions in investments. Heard from the grapevine that a mall the size of the one in Pasay City will rise here soon.

A host of other activities happened on that day including the SRP Sundown Run 2010. More than a thousand runners registered for the 3K, 5K and 10k categories. And as usual, it was graced by familiar faces in the running community - people who run for fun and runners by profession. As it was in previous races, my objective was to complete the race. I didn’t care anymore who finished first, second or third in the overall. After all, it’s the same set of winners each time, from one race to the next. I grew tired taking photos of them. Kumbaga sa pagkain, na-umay na ako.

Some good things to note: It was a mile better than that infamous May 2 event. The captivating coastal bay view from the flyover. Alex finished his first 10K run. A bottle of water and hotdog on stick awaited runners at finish line. The exciting free ride on a 10-wheeler truck from SRP to Carbon. Photo session at Magellan’s cross. And the b-b-q dinner at Larsian.

Now, who says running is just running?

Saturday, May 8, 2010

3rd Mandaue City Run

The 3rd Mandaue City Run was my 6th race since I started to embark on this exciting new journey. It was definitely one of the events that many people looked forward to. Not only was it a break from the usual running venue, it also showcased the scenic Cansaga Bay Bridge. I was excited myself because it would be my first to run this course in this part of Cebu. And now, it could be told what really went down when runners took that Mandaue path in the early morning of May 2nd.

Plenty of stories, terrible ones. Apparently people talked as most expectations were not met, from singlet distribution to street marshalling to inaccurate course measurement. These were tangible proofs attributable to the work of the people behind it. But the biggest blunder was hydration. The first water station was a bit okay, the succeeding ones were horrible. Lucky me I had a small change in my pocket, enough for a bottle of water along the road. No pun intended but in the future, maybe runners should just stick to what they do best – RUN – and leave events such as this to legitimate race organizers.

If it’s any consolation, seconds after the race gun was fired, I heard The Yellow Jersey Club being acknowledged. So even before I hit the first 50-meter mark and back to cross the finish line after enduring what seemed to be an epic 10K run, I felt rewarded already. “My” running community is growing and it feels doubly good to see newbies finish their first race. The first time experience, I’m sure, would still linger long after they have recovered from exhaustion, fatigue and fun.

Next stop - SRP Sundown Run!