#R3Run had more than 10,000 runners sending a message on the importance of the 3Rs which is Reuse, Reduce and Recycle. A big cheers to Quanta Paper Corporation for bringing a feel-good run at a cost that’s practically a giveaway since it had a lot giveaway for all runners. It was a fast and flat course that also gave us the bay side view of Roxas Boulevard on an early Sunday morning.”
When I attended the R3Run launched, I was impressed by the race details. For one, P250 for a run complete with a race tee and loot bag was practically a giveaway. Next, they provided a new venue which was the Blue Bay Walk in Pasay City. Next, the event area was a WiFi hotspot for all users. Bottom line is that it’s a really great deal. More than 10,000 runners registered for the event and let’s see how they execute with the volume of runners. I selected the 12K distance as I always go for the longest distance to make my trip worth the travel time and the early wake up time. I had given myself modest expectations for this one and the bigger part was to experiment on pace, strides and run walk intervals. I also don’t want to stress myself too much as I’ll be heading off to Subic for a Board Meeting in the afternoon. I also made sure that I got a decent sleep before the race which is something I haven’t done in a long while.
Race starts at the Blue Bay Walk in Pasay City and proceeds to Roxas Boulevard. The race goes on the immediate climb on the overpass crossing Edsa to the other side of Roxas Boulevard until Bradco Avenue before the u-turn slot 1.5 kilometers into the race. The race goes back to the other side of Roxas Boulevard and climbs the flyover once again before going flat again at Roxas Boulevard until the 4th kilometer. At km 4, there’s another climb in the flyover crossing Buendia. The race continues at Roxas Boulevard until UN Avenue for the u-turn at 7.2 kilometers. The race then goes back to the start passing the flyover again at Km 10 and shifting back to Blue Bay Walk for the finish.
I was able to sleep early for this one and was in the Blue Bay Walk at around 4:30 am in time for the 5 am gun start. I was able to go around the area to see familiar faces and warm up. The finish area for 8K and 12K was different for 4K and 1K. That’s a good way to separate more than 10,000 runners. After the pre-event ceremonies and warm up, we were released on time at gunstart. It’s anything goes for this race and I’ll just settle with a strategy that works in the middle of the race. I started fast and went on to run until I could before taking a walking break. I was able to reach the first water station which is around 1.5 kilometers before I started with a few seconds walk. Muscle was a bit stiff after the fast start so I went back to a run walk sequence while trying to loosen up the muscles. I took the climb back to the flyover in Buendia to rest the legs a bit before running again on the descent and flat grounds.
After a while, I went on a more stable 4 minute, 1 minute run walk split after the descent approaching the 5 kilometers mark. It was also this time that day becomes brighter and you could definitely see the view of Manila Bay running this stretch. Since most of the hydration stations were towards the other end of the road, I decided to pass on the hydration and will just rehydrate on my way back after the u-turn. It was a little over 2 kilometers before the u-turn using the same run-walk sequence. After the u-turn, I saw some familiar faces on the other end of the road.
The first thing I did after the u-turn was to go straight to the next hydration station and hydrate. I went back to my routine with a sequence of runs and walks and water stops until the climb again in the 10th kilometer. I run half the climb and then walk the other half. I may have conserved my energy too much as I still fresh at this point so when the race descended, I took the momentum to speed up carrying the momentum on the flats.
I was getting my momentum and finally found the pace and stride I’m comfortable with. I went on this rate as I entered the last kilometer to the finish line. I wasn’t running fast the whole race but I was consistent with my pace and effort. I started picking up my speed as I made the last turn and went on with a strong finish. I was dripping in sweat as I approached the finish line. I earned my mileage for today.
This was a well run race for Quanta and Cosmic Gate Innovations Events. Even if you see that there was a phalanx of runners all around, there was enough leg room to run. Water stations was a bit crowded but it’s tolerable considering it’s servicing 10,000+ runners. Having separate finish line did help in preventing bottlenecks at the finish line. The queue for the loot bag was fast though there were a lot of queues because there were additional items in other booths. The hosting was well done and it was nice seeing Jasmine Curtis and Kylie Padilla being so comfortable with the crowd during the post event. Definitely, a successful event… Do I hear a R3Run 2? Well, I hope.