May 1, 2011 – Toledo City to Cebu City (via Transcentral Highway)

Successfully finished my 10th ultra run !!!

I have to say that overall to date, this was the 2nd most “physically-and-mentally” challenging race I’ve ever participated next to Bataan Death March (BDM) 160 km, and perhaps the “toughest” in terms of “course/route” grade. My quads and hamstring practically “freezed” several times during the race that forced me to slowdown bigtime. Also, I started to feel some pains on my left foot after km#30. Crossed the finish line in 9:21 hours (finisher#67).

the aerial view and elevation profle of the route (pix posted by Jacob Ong in FB)

Given the elevation profile, I came up with these strategies 1) to run at a relatively fast pace in the 1st 15-20km, 2) walk the uphill segments, and then 3) run on a downhill portions. I think I executed plan 1 and 2 pretty well. I ran at a comfortable pace of around 5:00 mins per km on the whole stretch of the flat course, and then started walking at the very first ascent. Plan 3 did not materialize, not at all !!! By the time there were downhill sections, my quads and hamstring were already dead. Adding to that was the pain on my left foot which I started feeling halfway thru the race. From there, I started doing the run-walk ’til I cross the finishline. The weather was great the whole morning by the way, though I heard it was really hot after 1pm.

Thanks Cebu Runners and Roadside Supporters

I would like to acknowledge the hospitality of all runners/supports. Roadside supports were awesome, felt like am running 5k/10k as there were lots of them, and there was never a time I had problems with fuel and hydration all thruout the race. I even have to skip several hydration stations. Thanks for all the support/s especially to Ungo, TTB, groups/individuals whom I came across with during the race (and to others I met along the way, sorry but cant remember all the names/groups, there were a lots you guys).

along the route, still look fresh at this point (from the album posted by Hazel Alba in FB)

May 1, 2011 – 1:21 PM . . .


Thanks to Jacob and Hazel for the photos…




Posted by: tigerboy | January 8, 2011

2010:Year of the Tiger(boy)

Year of the Tiger…

As I bid farewell to the year 2010, I can’t help but look back at the things I did and races I joined during the year.  And as I welcome the new year, I’d like to share the highlights of the year that was: 

– Top 10 finish in 2nd BDM 102 Ultramarathon. Running and finishing this event was one of my goals for 2010.  My original target was to finish within the 18 hour cut-off but to my surprise, my preparation and training paid off in the end which was good enough for a 10th place finish overall at 13:20 hours. 

– On my first year to venture into the world of ultramarathon running, I was able to finish 6 ultramarathons along with 6 full marathons in one calendar year. 

– In addition to successfully completing said number of long distance races, I ended the year with a 42k PR in the Singapore Marathon beating my 3:36:45 hours target for 2010 by registering a 3:34:29 hours finish time last December.

– My last race for the year was the Rizal Day Run in Camp Aguinaldo, where I achieved my 4,000th km milestone last  Dec 27.  Interestingly, 2,000 km or half the total mileage until the end of the year was done last year alone matching the distance I was able to log for three years in the 2007 to 2009 period.  Personally, I think 2,000 km per year is not a lot considering I’ve been joining ultra races, but getting the ratio of the total 4,000 km versus the total time of all my runs yielded a 6:16 min per km pace.

races / events participated in 2010

– In total, I participated in 38 races/events (roughly 3 per month), officially and unofficially registered PR’s in all race categories.

current pr's by events...

Goals for 2011

One of the motivating factors that have worked for me to be able to strive and improve my time is setting a goal at the start of the year, making calculations based on my current PRs, finish time history and the McMillan running pace calculator / matrix.

Definitely one of the goals on top of my list is to be able to finish the 1st Bataan Death March (BDM) 100 mile/160km race.  To give my training a new twist, I’m also including joining a multi-sport race as part of my 2011 to-do list, maybe one triathlon event for the year in preparation for and hopefully be in track of my long-term goal of joining a half ironman race, perhaps in Camsur-Cobra 70.3 in 2012.

moving forward to 2011

I’m happy to note that over the years, I’ve been able to post faster finish times although this means that to be able to continue the trend, I have a much tougher task ahead of me this year.  Which translates to continued training and little time to laze around.  But like all passionate runners know, every dream is within reach if you train hard enough.

Keep those shoelaces tied and see you around the bend…


another tough year !!!!

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(photo credits: pat concepcion, jeff a., photovendo, brando l., agatha, tytsbogdo, tey (sg), lloyd.. thanks guys for the wonderful photos !!!)

Posted by: tigerboy | September 19, 2010

Are you ready for this ?

Are you IN for a big challenge ?

Sharing an article in Philippine Star last week (Sep 12, 2010 by Tanya T. Lara) regarding this challenging and exciting race……  (CLICK HERE) 

Also, I guessed pictures on my previous post gave you a flavor on what you will exprerience/see along the route…


Posted by: tigerboy | September 12, 2010

Corregidor Island: “the Rock”

September 11, 2010 – Corregidor Island

The Island of Fortress. . .

Corregidor is a small rocky island in the Philippines about 48 kilometers west of Manila which is stragetically located at the entrance of Manila Bay. This island fortress stands as a memorial for the courage, valor, and heroism of its Filipino and American defenders who bravely held their ground against the overwhelming number of invading Japanese forces during World War II. (source:

How about taking a day-off and run around the island called “the ROCK” ?

WE JUST DID !!!  a 12-km run arround Corregidor Island…

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(some photos courtesy of atty. raymund g. martelino)

Posted by: tigerboy | September 5, 2010

2nd PAU Ultramarathon Race : P2P 65K

August 29, 2010 – Ilocos Norte (Pasuquin to Pagudpud)

P2P 65 is the 2nd Ultramarathon race organized by PAU, the first one was PAU 50 in Tanay Rizal, a 50km race at the rolling terrains of Sierra Madre mountain, this race surprised us with a roller-coaster route that has a total elevation gain of 1,500m.. yes 1.5km total elevation gain mostly towards the last 20km. And now… a 65km (+5km) race up north at Ilocos region. The route traces the national road from Pasuquin to Pagudpud with side trips going to 3 key landmarks in the province of Ilocos Norte namely; Kapurpurawan Rocks, Burgos Lighthouse and Bangui Windmills.

I have to say I enjoyed and had so much fun running PAU events because of the scenery along the route, the people, the camaraderie amongst runners/support and surprises Baldrunner, PAU founder, would normally offer during the race day.

And lastly, since PAU race venues are out-of-town, it gives me an opportunity to tour around nice places I never visited in the past. Post race tours are equally fun and exciting (and educational too) to be honest.

at laoag airport with camilla and rey...

jeepney ride going to hotel...

10..9..8..7..6..5..4..3..2..1.. GO !!!

As a general strategy, Alfred, Wilnar and I planned to run at a comfortable pace all throughout the race. That means; run as far as we can run at a relaxed pace with minimal walkbreaks in the 1st part, enjoy the scenery and take pictures/photo-ops, and walk if we have to towards the latter part. No specific target on distance, time and pace. We practically agreed we will run by feel for the whole duration of the race, though we thought of trying to maintain a pace of 10km/hr (6mins/km) or so in the initial salvo.

The race started at around 5am after a short briefing and simple ceremony.

minutes before gunstart...

First Part.. First 30km…

It turned out that the 1st 30km was the so called “1st part” in our plan . We were able to maintain 10km per hour consitstently. 1st 10km at 59:20, 2nd 10km at 1:00:09, and 3rd 10km at 1:00:37. Total of 3:00:06 for 30km. The time includes pit stops every 10kms and photo-ops along the way.

The first tourist attraction we passed by was the Burgos lighthouse, roughly at km#23. This lighthouse was built in 1892, we were told that the 17-meter tower is still functioning. This is the highest lighthouse in the country with a total height of 160 meters from sea level to the light beacon.

burgos lighthouse...

still fresh.. on my way to the lighthouse...

nice background... the burgos lighthouse

another view.....

Next 10km…

Next 10kms was totally a different story… km#30 started with a kick.. a trail road leading to Kapurpurawan Rocks. We were not able to pick-up our pace on the trail, the road was not just a trail but comes with big/sharp rocks that can put you out of balance, or worst, a sprained ankle. We practically walk more or less one-thirds of the 8km route, going in and out of “the rocks”. My garmin registered 4:30:47 @ km#40, thats 1:30:41 hours for the last 10km.

the view leading to kapurpurawan rocks...

the "rock"...

on the way back to main road..

with alfred...nice bib nos !!!

Next 20km…

Maintaining a steady pace was becoming difficult for the trio at this point so we decided to do 4-mins run,  1-min walk…… then 3-mins run, 1-min walk… and more walkbreaks. It was a slow 20km run at 2:54:29 hrs (8:43 mins/km pace), including 10-15 mins pit stop/photo-ops at Bangui windmills.  Top 3 ladies finishers overtook us at this part of the race.

the bangui windmills...


The longest 5km run of my life… 

7:25:16 hours @ 60km mark… my garmin was dead… with 5km to run (well, thats what we thought)… and most of all, the temperature now is on the rise. At this point, we decided then to run a bit faster especially on every downhill part knowing that in a shortwhile it will be over and done, perhaps in 42 mins. Well.. maybe not so fast !!! Last 5km seemed like forever. Relying on the road signs, the last 5km is not anywhere near 5km. We were running for almost an hour since km#60 and still no sign of beach resorts. As far as our eyes can see, still an endless road in front of us. Asking local folks made it more confusing when we ask how far is the saud beach resort.. “sir 5kms pa yan”… “mga 1km pa”… another guy on the motorbike said: “malayo pa kayo boy, mga 8km”… now I realized that a normal person cannot really give an estimate how long a km is. Enough… we then settled on what  Jovie mentioned that the race will be 65km++, maybe 67km? 

last 5km +++++++ from here....

Now walking again… ran out of energy reserve… the speed-up we did earlier brought our fuel to empty zone… Just brisk walking our way to finishline as we believed then that nothing will change anyway, at least on the ranking, the distance vs runners behind us were like a km or so. 

… Finishline …

Finally… after 1:20 hours from km#60 we saw the light at the end of the long long tunnel… crossed the finishline at around 8:45 hours, and surprisingly, 3 of us placed within top 20. 16th place for Alfred, me on the 17th, and Wilnar 19th. It was only then when we learned that the total distance is 70km. 🙂 (Official Results from Baldrunner Website)

with br awarding the finishers trophy...

P2P 65 vs BDM 102

For this event, the 65km race ended with 5km extra for a total of 70km, and we only realized that after crossing the finishline. Interestingly, especially for the first timers of Ultra run, the total P2P 65 route is only 32km short of the famous BDM102 ultramarathon race. Im sure newbies to BDM102 are now thinking 102km race is not something out of reach after finishing this race, and perhaps their experience in finishing the “70km” race will encourage them to register for the next edition of BDM come March of 2011.

zZzZzZzZzZzZzZz........ running 70km on-foot must be really tiring !!!

..... hmmmn.. time to relax and unwind....


Thanks to the following people:  Alfred (el kyoshi) and Wilnar for the company and of course for pacing with me the whole time. Rey Jimenez /Jonel for taking care of our accomodations and logistics even at the last minute request. Camilla for sharing the support van with us and for the post race dinner. Jeffrey Avellanosa & friends /Alfred for the nice pictures on this post. peeps (runners and supports) for roadside support and encouraging words. Fellow runners on the road for those words of encouragement. Jovie/Baldrunner for another exciting and successful event. And to all of those who in one way or another supported us in finishing the race…. and of course to God Almighty for another fullfilling and injury-free race…


Posted by: tigerboy | July 20, 2010

“Things are not always what they seem”

July 4, 2010 – Luneta, Manila  @ km 0

Pre-Race : High Hopes

Then there was OPLAN: MILO 12345, my battlecry on how I will tackle 26.2 miles on foot come D-day.

As posted earlier, MILO 12345 stands for; Plan 1 : finish @ 3:35 hrs or a new PR, if I can’t make a PR then go for Plan 2 : finish the race in 3:45 hrs. That was the plan, my big bold prediction on how I will finish the race. Behind those numbers are a set of strategies ready for execution after 16 weeks of rigorous training and preparation. With high confidence, I assumed that I will cross the finishline between 3:35 hrs to 3:45 hrs, NET of my current fitness level, my training, weather conditions, route grade, others. This forecast was somehow supported by Yasso 800’s speed run I did 10 days before race day (projected @ 3:24). Learning’s from my previous marathons had been incorporated in the plan as well. Note that I’ve demonstrated 3:40 hrs in Condura last Feb where runners passed through the rolling terrains of Skyway and Katipunan flyover twice, pretty much comparable to new Milo route that offers 10 ascend/descend (all in all) at Buendia and EDSA flyovers. .. and lastly, I’ve also set my fuel/hydration plans including “carboloading” days prior the event. ALL set and ready, seems like a solid plan…

Race Day : Big Battle…

…that morning, I was in high spirit !!!

By 3:15am, Alfred (el kyoshi) dropped by at my room (Bayview Hotel) to leave his stuff then we made our way to the race venue. As we got nearer the starting line, I can feel the festive mood, saw familiar faces from different running groups, fellow P&G’ers, and some people I know in the running community.

As soon as I got inside the starting pen, I started doing my pre-race rituals with other runners at the back end of the barricaded area. Jogged around for 5-mins, leg stretching, and ran a couple of 25m-30m sprint repeats.

30minutes before gunstart....

While having a conversation and waiting for the race to start, Alfred, Joms, Totoy, Wilnar, and Pabs agreed that we will run together when we found out that we have the same goal of finishing the race in around 3:45 hrs. I know though that these guys can do better than that looking at their previous runs. They had been my running buddies in the past marathons. Our strategy is to run between 5:00 to 5:20 mins per km, this pace if sustained will give a 3:45 hours or less finish time. Ten minutes before 4am, the group then moved to the front row, on our way we chanced upon Jovie (baldrunner) and Jonel (frontrunner/bugobugo) with the rest of team hardcore and bdm’ers. Jonel introduced us to Yong (Larrazabal) and learned that he also plans to finish the race in 3:45 hrs. He decided to run with us upon Jonels suggestion. Without any warning, we just heard the gunstart …. and the runners were off…..

p&g runners....

with ultramarathoners - wilnar, ray, and alfred

with pabs, kristy, carlos, and allen

me and wilnar with jovie (baldrunner), pau founder

First 10km was at an easy pace. We were cruising at a 4:50 to 5:10 mins/km pace, with occasional spurt close to 4:00 mpk. The group.., well now I can only see Alfred, Pabs, and Yong, clocked 50:21 mins at km#10. 1st 10km was well within my target of around 52 minutes per 10km. A few km or so, it was only me and Pabs running side-by-side, the others were either ahead or behind us. Everything seems to be fine… until I felt my left leg (upper-quads) was becoming heavy as we approached km#18. I didn’t mind, I just kept on running. Halfway thru the 2nd loop my leg gave an indication of cramp so I opted to slow down and see if things will get better.  I told Pabs to go ahead and I will try catch-up with him. Finished 2nd 10km around 53 mins, still within target I thought.

hanging on to it !!! (photovendo)

Halfway: Big Surprise !!!

Somewhere between km#21 and #22, I started to walk, can’t hold on any longer even at a slower pace… got no choice at this point because my left quads was creeping up… stiff !!! so early !!! I maybe expecting this, but this one was  just so early in the race !!!. A series of run/short-walk followed but my legs were not able to regain the pace I had earlier. From then, I tried ingesting more fluids along the way, took my 3rd gel earlier than planned hoping my legs will recover faster. Kept running at a slow pace (and walking) waiting for the cramps to settle down… but there was no sign of improvement. I also noticed that my body system was not responding to powergels. Normally, as I used up a sachet of gel, within 10-20 minutes I will feel a “kick” or boost to continue running. This time, nothing… none at all !!! One by one, runners passed by including Alfred, Natz (i2 runner), and Yong.

Reality Check !!!

By the time I crossed km#30 my garmin registered around 2:44, and now I only got 1:01 hours to finish in 3:45 hours; my minimum target.   With the way my legs are behaving, maybe not possible anymore…  At this juncture I’ve given up, I finally accepted the fact that “ it’s not my day today !!!” Maybe I can try 3:50 hours to qualify, or to finish in 4 hours at least. I have 1:06 to 1:16 hours to do that at around 5:30 to 6:20 mins per km pace. With my condition ??? possible but still challenging enough I guessed… Hoping for the best, I kept running within 5:30-6:20 mins per km, but not for long, was within this range only after 2km… then 7mins++ pace the next kms…

go! go! go! tigerboy! (photovendo)

My spirit was willing, very much willing… but my flesh just can’t !!!

As the race progressed, putting one foot after another is turning into a difficult task; no longer enjoyable as it usually was. On top of that, the sun’s heat was already taking its toll on me. Now, even a sub-4hr finish was out of reach at the rate that I was moving; still @ 7 mins++ per km pace… more and more walkbreaks followed…

so many questions at this stage... (photovendo)

At the last descend over at Buendia bridge towards the finishline, I saw Jonel having his own battle trying to keep running even at a slower pace. Like me, he was wrestling with fatigue and heat. I ran with him. Both of us were in disbelief on what had happen (or happening) to us at that very moment; asking so many questions what’s with this race, that made us perform way below our expectations. Anyway, we basically gallowayed our way in that (long) stretch of Roxas Blvd, alternately running and walking at a pace between 8 to 9 mins/km. I believe that was the longest 4km of the route. BDM’er Totoy Ocampo  joined us roughly 2km to finishline, we were practically walking then, keeping our energy for the last burst at the finishline.  At the last turn, fellow Team Hardcore member and Runnersworld covergirl Michelle Estuar pulled alongside on us and still running strong. Earlier, I was about a km ahead of her at the last turnaround in Edsa flyover and she obviously endured the rest of the way going back at a faster pace to catch up on me. 10-15 seconds later, four of us crossed the finishline with a time of 4:15:13. My garmin registered 4:14:54 with an average pace of 6:02 mins/km.

approaching finishline... with jonel, michelle, & totoy (photo from rununlmtd)

@ 4:15:12 3m to finishline....

... finally !!!

... my reward after running for a little more than 4-hrs

Post Race… Big Upset !!!

“Things are not always what they seem”

Big upset indeed !!! I thought I had it in the bag !!!  I have 3 Reasons why I was so confident…

1) I trained hard for this than any other marathons I’ve ran in the past… a lot harder !!!

2) My assumption: the boring and flat route shouldn’t be an issue because the training runs I’ve had were tougher and a lot “boring” than this.

3) And then, hoped for a good weather and race management… safe assumption I guessed.

I really thought that on a bad day, 4 hours will be my worst finish. I was wrong !!! dead wrong !!! I crossed finish line more than 30 mins slower than my target.

So, what went wrong? Looking at the splits below, I started to slow down bigtime on the 3rd 10km relative to the first two, and did not recover.

On my previous post, I mentioned 5 key elements to consider in predicting marathon finish time relative to previous marathon performance. These are;  1) training 2) weather 3) route 4) general conduct of the race, and  5) strategies. From the list, I can assume either weather or route (or both) to be the reason/s for my poor performance.

My (1)training and (5)strategies were tested in the past marathons I’ve ran. (4)General conduct of the race was not as bad compare to previous Milo runs except perhaps for the fatality apparently from negligence.

The (2) weather then was obviously hot and humid which was a major reason for most runners to fade towards the tail-end of the race including me. I factored in some buffer-time for that, but obviously not enough to cancel out the heat effect during the actual race.  It was so hot and humid even before the race started.

And lastly, there are a couple of things that I cannot explain up to now; “why my legs gave in so early in the race?” Is there something in the air at that coastal area that made me (and others) got cramps or fatigue too early?  and “why my quads, not my calves?”  Was it the (3)route? the 3-boring-loops? or the roller-coaster track on buendia and edsa flyovers? I honestly don’t know.

Whatever the reasons are… at the end of the day… all of these are part of the “game” we call MARATHON…

splits registered on my garmin

with mon cruz, my brother jesus, and my kids...

with p&g 42k and 21k finishers... congratulations guys !!!

with ultramarathoners / bdm'ers...

with caloy and totoy...

Moving Forward…

After 2 weeks of recovery, I m now about to start (or should I say “continue” ) my training for the next target event, 2nd Leg of PAU dubbed as P2P 65 (Pasuquin to Pagudpud) to be held Aug 29 in the northern tip of Luzon; Ilocos Norte. Camsur Marathon in September is on my list but I have no clear plans yet, maybe same strategies as Milo. Lastly, I consider taking another crack at qualifying myself  in Milo Finals. Though it’s quite tough, I thought of giving provincial qualifying leg a shot, perhaps in San Pablo City or Batangas  sometime  in October. I have more or less 12-weeks to prepare. Just in case, this will be in a 21km event with qualifying time of 1:35 hours at my age. Lets see …

..... will be better next time !!!

Posted by: tigerboy | July 3, 2010

Oplan : MILO-12345

One Day to GO… anxious still ?

With roughly 12hrs to D-day, I can feel as if tomorrow’s race will be my first marathon… nervous?? excited?? pressured?? or maybe thinking too much on how I will perform with this race. At my age, I have to cross the finishline at 3:50 hrs to qualify for finals in Dec.

Marathon Finish Time ???

Looking at my previous marathon races, I have broken 3:50 hrs 3 times; at Singapore Marathon in Dec 2009, Cebu Marathon in Jan 2010, and Condura Marathon last Feb. I know though that these will not guarantee a good finish time as there are other important factors to consider. Quite honestly, I looked at those past marathons only as a reference and as learning events for future races. Based from my experience, here are some of the factors runners need to consider in predicting marathon finish time relative to their previous performances, and perhaps this is a list of things that can affect run time during the actual race.

1) Training – the training you’ve undergone will at least  give you an idea on the range from where you will finish the race, your training will more or less give you a general feel of your fitness level. You can also consider the race/s you’ve participated leading to the marathon day.

2) Weather – This is a big factor !!! cold ? hot ? humid? wet ? raining hard? Well, whichever that maybe, safe to say this can make or break your race day.

3) Route – hilly terrain?? flat?? Every race have their unique feature so to speak. Condura for instance can be identified to skyway rolling terrains. Now with Milo, this will be a totally different route vs the last 3 years. Obviously, my past performances on Milo cannot be compared apples-to-apples to this year’s edition.

4) General Conduct of the Race – Organizer plays a major role on this one. From my perspective, this is all about the general safety of the runners . Enough and strategically-positioned hydration/food stations…, marshalls on critical turn/s or turn-around…  or management of runners traffic… to name a few things that needs to be perfect during the whole duration of the race. Lapses on this can cause you a valuable minutes from your time, or worst DNF’ed ; imagine getting lost along the route; say running extra km, or get hit by dehydration because there’s not enough water/powerdrinks.

5) And lastly, Strategies – a race plan, for execution. Some guys have their Plan A / Plan B… A plan based on your current assessment of the things listed above, and from your past experiences. This may include anticipation of “unlikely event” that can happen.


My strategies for tomorrows race. There will be no big difference in terms of execution plan compare to my last 2 full marathon run (Cebu & Condura). The only difference was the baseline from where I designed my training plan which dictated more or less my baseline finish time.

Finish TimePlan 1: finish in 3:35 hrs, a new PR, I believe my training should be able to deliver this if some the factors I mentioned above will be on my favor. As BR mentioned in one of his post, this is a prestigious event and therefore deserved to be treated as such… I will be there to give my best !!! Plan 2: finish the race in 3:45 hrs, 5-mins faster than my age qualifying cut-off.  These 2 plans would mean I need to run within 5:05 to 5:20 mins/km pace during the whole duration of the race. OR roughly  “52-52-52-52-12 minutes in 10-10-10-10-2km splits” …. well, more or less….

Fuel / Hydration – As what I have been telling to my runner friends; on the assumption that you followed a training plan, or should I say you trained hard-enough, it will all be about fuel and hydration management during (and day-prior) the marathon day.. 3 tactics, 1) Carboloading 3-days prior with an all-day pasta meals day before, 2) slowdown/walk @ drinking stations within 2.5 to 3.5 km range. I tested this strategy several times in the past and it worked for me 3) powergel 15mins prior, then every 45 mins after gunstart. I will also bring my race belt and tuck 2 bottles of sports drink.

Running Partner/s – Find running partners to make sure the “3-boring-loops” will be enjoyable, and at the same time get a “pull” from them when the going gets tougher especially towards the last 12km. Historically, this is where I normally slowdown bigtime relative to 1st 20-30 km. Alfred (elkyoshi), Totoy Santos, and Wilnar are the usual suspects as we are more or less within the same pace range (they are actually faster than me)

Anything can happen during the race… I just hope that things will be in order OVERALL … Before, During, and After the event…

So that’s OPLAN MILO-12345 – Finished at Plan 1 or with a new PR… if I cant, go for Plan 2 at 3:45 hrs at least… in short,  finish within 3:35 to 3:45 hours.


the new milo marathon playground (photo - from milo website)


Posted by: tigerboy | June 19, 2010

26.2 Reasons to Run a Marathon

34th Milo National Marathon : Manila Elimination Leg – July 4, 2010

With less than 3 weeks to go before Milo eliminations, there have been a lot of discussions or questions going on here and there regarding this event; the training, tapering, whats the route?, why so expensive registration fee?, do I really need to wear (undersized?) milo singlet? among others… and the most talked about topic of course was the implementation of “age-base” qualifying time (ala boston) for finals in Dec12. Different opinions; some runners find it ok, some don’t think its reasonable. To me…, it doesnt really matter, I will just run and try to beat my own time; my PR, regardless of the qualifying time…

Also by now, Im sure most of the runners are done with their longest long run (20miles+) and currently on the tapering stage of their training. So, Goodluck to all of us !!!

Why run a marathon ?

With this “marathon” hype, I would like to share this piece of writing from our previous GM and running coach/mentor. Yesterday while I was browsing thru my old files looking for my previous marathon training plans, I came across with this nicely written article “26.2 Reasons to Run a Marathon”. I remember this was one of several articles shared to us by our then running coach Jim Lafferty during the time when he was selling to us the idea of running a marathon. Jim spearheaded this “running” thing in our company and for a short period of time running developed into a habit or favorite fitness activity amongst employees. That year, 45 P&G’ers including me became “a proud marathoner” at the 31st Milo Elimination in 2007. Milo marathon became a yearly event for us; in 2008 around 50 employees crossed the finishline, then last year close to 100 employees with around 80% first-timers made it to the finish line and now call themselves a “marathoner”.

Jim also put together the Top 10 Tips for Running a Successful Marathon  which I posted last September, another good read especially for a first-timer

Please read on….


The Marathon—-26.2 Miles 

26.2 Reasons to Run a Marathon 

  1. The best way to remove the words, “I can’t” from your vocabulary.
  2. Need a dose of self-confidence? Comes in a handy 26.2 mile/42.2 km package!
  3. Do something unique and special. Only 0.01% of the world ever finds the motivation and discipline. Be one of the chosen few.
  4. Lose weight. There is no better way to lose the weight, and keep it off, than by training for and completing the marathon. It’s like free liposuction!
  5. Want to look good in front of the mirror? Less “jiggling” and firmed and toned lines? A marathon is the ticket!
  6. The crowds. Nothing is more motivating than the people who line the course, yelling encouragement as they stand in awe of what you are doing.
  7. There is no rationale reason to run a marathon. Pretty cool, eh?
  8. You get better with age. Most sports mean a slow decline with the forces of age. Marathoning is one of the few sports where you can and do improve with age as base mileage increases. It feels GREAT to be faster at 40 than at 20.
  9. The joy you get of being able to take steps 2 at a time, go up 4 flights, and you aren’t standing out of breath at the top.
  10. Inspiration in life. Marathoning brings out the best of humankind. You’ll see people from all walks of life and situations in a marathon—in wheelchairs, with amputated limbs, blind. You become inspired by seeing what the power of will and human spirit can achieve, and overcome.
  11. Camaraderie. Being able to say, “I am a marathoner” provides a unique bond to those you meet who have done one as well. It is a special linkage, forged through the grit and strain of reaching deep into yourself.
  12. Long life. The data is clear—marathoners live longer and healthier than less sedentary folks. Who wants to check out early?
  13. Do you wanna find out what you are truly made of? Run a marathon!
  14. The post-marathon dinner. One of the greatest eating moments of your life! Sit around and swap “war stories” of the race with fellow marathoners, and eat all you want, whatever you want. You earned it!
  15. Personal energy. Marathoning has you sleeping fitfully like a baby at night, and awakening invigorated to go about your day. You’ll have never felt better!
  16. What a great way to see a city! Run London, or New York or Chicago or Paris or Geneva and see the whole of a great city from a perspective few ever have—from the streets.
  17. Be a part of history. Marathoning is based upon events in Ancient Greece, and a messenger running to Athens with news of the battle. It is a race, and distance, based from legends and history. How cool is that!?
  18. The finishers’ medal. Remember how your first award as a small child meant so much? How you slept with it under your pillow? Recapture the magic. It is one great feeling to get that finishers medal placed around your neck!
  19. Family pride. The look on mom and dad’s faces; sisters and brothers. Wives and husbands and children. Friends. Is absolutely priceless. You can sense their pride in what you have done, all of the sacrifice and motivation to run in the rain, snow, in the darkness. Makes it all worth it.
  20. Help others. Most marathons now cater to fund raising for every mile or KM run, to help a good cause. Not only good for you, but good for those less fortunate than ourselves.
  21. The muscle on the front of your shin. Only marathoning seems to build up this muscle on the front of your shin, which forms a sharp and firm edge along the shin bone. It is the “mark” of a marathoner you can see in anyone in short pants. And it is definitely one neat muscle to have!
  22. The start. There is nothing like it. All the adrenaline, the electricity in the air, the anticipation of the journey to come. All those butterflies in your stomach. And then the gun, and off you go.
  23. Learning about life. Life is a marathon. It is not short. It has its ups and downs. It is all about having goals, taking it one step at a time. The parallels are downright amazing. You’ll be better in life having run a marathon.
  24. The tears. Finishing often brings a tear to the eyes of the toughest of competitors. And tears of joy and self pride taste GREAT.
  25. The Queen of England. The original distance in the first Olympics was 25 miles based upon distances from city of Marathon to Athens in Greece. When the Olympic Games moved to London, Her Majesty asked to extend the distance so she could view the finishers from the Royal Palace. This is how the extra 1.2 miles got added on and making the official distance 26.2 miles/42.2 KMs. In honor of this change and out of tradition, at mile 25 (kilometer 40) many marathoners sing, “God save the Queen” (true story!).
  26. George Bush and Puff Daddy. Never thought you’d see these 2 names in the same sentence? Well, both are marathoners! Don’t let them have this “leg up” on you!!

            The last 0.2. When you can see the finish line in sight and you know you have made it, and the crowds are 5 and 10 people deep, screaming at the tops of their lungs? Let me just say it is one of the greatest 100 seconds in life. No matter how tired you are, you will float to the finish line!


 JML/January 31, 2005


“Jim Lafferty is a Cincinnati native. A high school middle-distance runner, Jim continued  his running passion as a coach and later founded Cincinnati’s YMCA Striders Track Club, where he met his wife. Jim began his career in 1984 as a fitness consultant, which eventually led him to become a marketing executive. In 1991, Jim began his international career in Morocco, and later in Poland, Israel, Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, Switzerland, Philippines and now in Africa. Marathoning is a lifestyle for the Lafferty’s: among Jim, his wife Susan, and their 3 children, they’ve run 50+ marathons.”

June 12, 2010 – Fort

“ This is no ordinary marathon.   It is a gathering of patriots ! ”

That was the tagline…. I guess I can give 12 reasons why it was tagged as “no ordinary marathon” … but for the 2nd line that talks about “patriots” I really cannot think of any. I can’t even visualize who the patriots are, and what are they made of.  (at least from a runners perspective). Perhaps,  I can consider myself a “patriot” of running.

Here are 12 reasons that encapsulates the plus and minus(es) why last Sundays event was “no ordinary” ;

1) It’s no ordinary that a race be held on a 12th of June to commemorate our independence. (+)

2) It’s no ordinary these days that a race be conducted on a Saturdays. (+)

3) It’s no ordinary to have a running event as a non-profit endeavor whose vision is to institutionalize a very meaningful yearly celebration of our independence. (+)

4) It’s no ordinary that that an event is being envisioned as a yearly affair being done in 12 key cities simultaneously. (+)

5) It’s no ordinary these days for a race to have a registration fee of PhP 350 or less that comes along with a decent race singlet and bib. I just hope that the next 7 reasons will not justify having to pay more becuase I believe this can be avoided at a “zero” cost (+)

6) It’s no ordinary these days that a race starts late. (-)

7) It’s no ordinary that 2 or more distance-events start at the same time, I mean at gunstart. (-)

8 ) It’s no ordinary for a race to have 2 loops, at least on a 21k race. 2nd loop at a shorter distance or small loop made it extraordinary. (-)

9) It’s no ordinary to change the race route (vs what was published on the race packet) during the day of the race. (-)

10) It’s no ordinary for the runners to get lost in a race, or  finish 21k in 1:30+ hrs, or run 3km short, because race marshals assigned on a critical turnaround or turn have no idea of the route. (-)

11) It’s no ordinary these days that a race organizers/directors make the same mistakes from a previous experience/s of conducting unpopular race, they normally learn from the past boo-boos. (-)

12) And lastly, and certainly not the least, It’s no ordinary for runners not to complain for such a disorganized race, especially if you travel all the way from a far place or the one who wakes up 2am or 3am in the morning  to run, or a runner (or a first-time half marathoner) who expects a medal after finishing a “legitimate” 21km run but did not get one (-)

ANYWAY, lets move on…  there were good and bad… I just hope everybody will learn from these…



Generally, it was a good day for me. Met my objective of running 30km as part of my training plan for Milo Elimination. 21km @ 1:47: 34, I was one of the runners who got lost, managed to run at an exact distance on my own as I happened to have a running watch (garmin). And then additional 9km @ 1:06:07 with Alfred (el kyoshi) after the race. Tapering will start from hereon. Qualifying for Milo by the way will be 10mins harder for me at my age vs lat year because of the implementation of age-based qualifying time (ala Boston Marathon). I need to cross the finishline 3:50 Hrs or less

pre-race picture with P&G'ers

another pre-race picture...

post race ...

another post race picture with p&g finishers...

with alfred (el kyoshi)

with my eldest... after 30km run...

with (photo by carlo- drum&run)


Ohh by the way, it’s also no ordinary for me to write an article like this, its just that things could have been done better. I don’t normally complain on things because I usually look  at the brighter side… proper perspective so to speak. The fact that I was able to run at my target distance for the day Im already solved. See you all at my next race !!!

Posted by: tigerboy | June 10, 2010

races, recovery, and more races…

Its been a longwhile since I last posted an article here, I have been so busy these past couple of months from work. I may not be blogging…. but definitely didn’t slowdown or cut-back on running…

After BDM102 in March, I thought it will take sometime for me to recover before I get back to running, moreso in joining weekend races running at “race pace”. Well I was wrong, in fact six days after my “longest race” to-date, I was able to do a long run…,  a decent tempo run at 5k-pace 2 days later…. then a handful of races week-after-week until end of May…. 1 – 50km, 2 – half marathon, 1 – 10-miler, 3 – 15km, 1 – 10km, 1 – 5km.

Races I’ve ran (after BDM102 in Mar 6-7)…..


RECOVERY period…

I was forced to take a break (again) when my legs prematurely gave-in to fatigue as early as km#6 during the Nature Valley run, walked a lot at the last 2km which is quite unusual for me… I guess I did well even with that as I finished 21km around 1:47 hrs, but I knew I need to make an intervention, I thought my legs were complaining – “stop running please”. I’ve had a long-streak of running at “race pace” and there has to be a “recovery period” especially with the upcoming Milo Elimination less than a month from now. So I decided not to lace my running shoes for 1-week to have the much-needed rest and recovery. It was tough.. no running for SIX-LONG DAYS………., somehow my busy schedule helps…

at last !!! after 6 days...

Six days of rest and finally, did a long run last sunday with Alfred (el kyoshi) around Sta Rosa, a 21km run… and yesterday, surprisingly pulled a 21:33 5km tempo run 🙂 … I guess the 1-week recovery worked for me.


And now moving forward, Im IN again for a series of races looking at “My Upcoming Races” page. In fact, I already got myself registered to at least 8 races from now til Dec (listed below). Im still trying to fill in open weekends that matches my training plan for my “target races“.


Jun12 2010 Phil Independence Day Half Marathon (Fort) -21km

Jun20 New Balance Trail Adventure Run (Nuvali, Laguna) -15km

Jul04 34th Milo Marathon – Manila Elimination (Luneta) -42km

Jul11  Run 4 Life 2010: The Lifeline Foundation Fun Run (Alabang) -10km

Jul25 RUNFEST: Anniversary Fun Run (Luneta) -10km

Aug29 2nd PAU 65k Ultramarathon Race (Ilocos Norte) -65km

Sep26 Summit Water Camsur Marathon 2010 (CWC) -42km

Dec05 Standard Chartered Marathon Singapore (Singapore) -42km

On the list, my target races from where I will run in full swing will be Milo Elimination, PAU65km Ultramarathon and Singapore Marathon. My immediate objective is to run a sub 3:50 hrs marathon this July which will qualify for Milo finals in Dec12. Also, Milo elims will be my “sort of” long run for PAU 65km. Then in Singapore, I target to finish full mary between 3:29 hrs to 3:35 hrs to close the year with a new PR , this is a little bit faster than my original FM goal I published last January @ 3:36:45 hrs. . . The other items on the list will be part of my training run (races) for these “target races”.

SO… thats all for now… see you at the weekend RACES….

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