The race starts at 34th Street and proceeds to the whole length of 8th Avenue until Kalayaan area for the first u-turn. The race then proceeds briefly to 32nd Street with a brief turn at 5th and 3rd Avenue before the first climb at Kalayaan Flyover at the 3rd kilometer where the runners get to experience the rolling terrain of kalayaan Flyover for the next two kilometers before the flat lands of Buendia. The fast and flats and Buendia continue until the next u-turn midway the 7th kilometer as the race proceeds back to Bonifacio Global City via another climb at Kalayaan Flyover midway the 10th kilometer until the 12th kilometer as the race descends to Rizal Drive and eventually to the next climb at 5th Avenue until McKinley Parkway for the next u-turn approaching the 14th kilometer. The race descends to 5th Avenue to 32nd street straight to the next climb at C5 flyover at the 16th Kilometer mark where the next u-turn is at the end of the flyover. The race then shifts to the Triangle Drive area with u-turns at 38th and 36th street before returning to 32nd Street for the finish line in 9th Avenue.
For some reason, I couldn’t sleep the day before the run so was up early and was able to be at BGC an hour before gun start at 3:30 am. Unfortunately, I felt out of sync early in the morning but these races always gives you a shot of adrenalin. I’ll also try to run at a managed heart rate for training purposes. There were more than 1,000 runners for the 21K with a lot of familiar faces in the running community. Since I was early, I had time to join the warm ups and stretches and 5, 4, 3, 2, 1. It’s gun start!
I had this discipline before of trying to run sub 7 minutes per kilometer on a consistent basis so this was my plan for the first 10 kilometers. It’s easier running on a consistent basis than doing some sprints and then ever exhausting myself in between. The good thing was I was slowly feeling a lot better after each kilometer. First 3K before the climb was fast before slowing down a bit over the climb in Kalayaan Flyover and its rolling terrain in the next two kilometers. I went back to a fast mode when the course shifted to flat but taking water break at each water stops and a banana break midway in the 7th kilometer at the u-turn slot in Osmena Highway. I still held on to a fast pace til the 9th before slowing down in the 10th kilometer before the climb back in Kalayaan Flyover but finished 10K at a good pace.
First half of the race over and now to run at a more comfortable and aerobic pace. By this point, I switched my view mode of my Suunto Ambit 2S with the heart rate more prominent as I’m going at an aerobic pace. After 10 kilometers it was a climb back in the Kalayaan Flyover and since I walked some parts of the climb, I was fresh again for the second part of the race. I switched to a 7:30 minute aerobic pace for the whole stretch of the Kalayaan Flyover and the climb in Rizal Drive and 5th Avenue approaching the 14th Kilometer. This was a tough stretch and what goes up must go down so took advantage of the descent in 5th Avenue and the flats of 32nd street over the next two kilometers before yet another climb in the c5 Flyover.
It’s my first time to try out the flyover to C5 and you’ve probably read the word, “climb” several time already and yet here’s another climb. I am starting to love this route as it’s a really challenging one. The elevation for the c5 flyover was not as high as the Kalayaan flyover but the stretch of incline was much longer so do the drill, cruise on the descents and go at a steady pace on the inclines. After the climb, it was down to the last 4 kilometers at the Triangle Drive Area before heading back to the finish line.
This was not only the last four kilometers of a 21 kilometers run, it was the last four kilometers of three long distance races bundled in a month. I was taking it at an easy pace taking a few stretches of running with few walks in between and resting at water stops. I was so thankful that for the whole race, there was without any muscle tightness or muscle pain and even if I started out of sync, I made progress along the way, but wait going to the last 200 meters, I felt my right calf muscles about to cramp so decided to just walk of the remaining distance since it’s just 200 meters. As I took my last turn to 9th Avenue and 100 meters to go, there were throngs of photographers eager to take that last dash to the finish line photo so what the heck, I went on to run the remaining 100 meters and thankfully, there was no cramping ’til the finish. Thank God for a safe race.
It’s nice to see the Takbo.PH Runfest back. Nothing shows running so alive than a community having fun with their passion. Congratulations to Jinoe Gavan and Takbo.PH for a very successful runfest. I also want to give credit where credit is due. Phot0-Ops has taken race photography to the next level alongside with groups like Running Photographers, Jazz Run, We Run For Good Health, Tara Trip Tayo and others who passionately capture our race moments. It’s also nice to see familiar faces who served as race marshals who cheered the runners along the whole course and volunteered for the love of the running community. I’m definitely looking forward to the next runfest.
Weapon of Choice