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The Story Behind My Takbo.PH Runfest 2016

Posted by on 18. July 2016

Takbo.PH 2016 Photo by Tong Pascua for Photo-ops

Takbo.PH Runfest is an annual tradition for me.  This year, I was supposed to pace for the half marathon category but it turned out I’m still on the road to recovery from my cough.  I had to do the next best thing, which was to support the event behind the scenes.

Read About:

Takbo.PH Runfest

With Gryf, Vanj and Chang

I rarely get sick but when I do, it takes me a week to recover.  I felt my coughs starting last Monday. It takes me a lot of rest and several days to be back to normal.  Previously, I agreed to be a pacer for the race for the half marathon category with fellow bloggers Jham and Roselle.  I was hoping that I would be well by Race Day and it turned out, I still have some cough during race day.  If I did run, I would end up straining myself and extended my cough for another week.  Since I already committed to the event, I went to the venue to support the race. I was early too just to see the pacers being sent-off to the starting line to lead their own pace group. I also had a lot of time to chat with my friends before the start of the race.

The Race Begins

Time moves faster when you’re in the background compared to when you race.  A lot of things happen in a race as each new kilometer experience is a story on its own.  My Takbo.PH Runfest experienced has evolved to be a journey on its own.  I guess when you miss this year’s race, you get more time to reminisce the past races. I started running in mid 2010 and I missed out on the first Takbo.PH Runfest. Why? It got sold out early. They featured a personalized singlet with your name on it.  I guess at this time, it’s a collectors item now.

Takbo.PH 2011

So after a year, I was able to finally join my first Takbo.PH Runfest in 2011. It was a 16K adventure that you’d surely remember. Back then when you do races in BGC or McKinley, it’s either you get to use the BGC route or the McKinley Route.  Takbo.PH was among the firsts to use both routes, which resulted to be a very challenging combination because of the long climb from BGC to McKinley.

Takbo.PH 2013

Takbo.PH Runfest took a breather in 2012 and was back with more surprises in 2013. The longest distance this time was the 21 kilometers. So expect the surprises right? BGC – Makati – McKinley – Lawton loop was no longer new at this time.  Of course, it won’t be an epic race without the surprises.  It turns out that there’s a newly opened flyover heading to C5 and that happened toward the last few kilometers of the race.  Just as you were breezing down 5th Avenue, you’ll realize that there’s an out and back in the c5 flyover. Epic, Right?

Takbo.Ph 2014

After finally trying out all the flyover and the climbs that BGC-McKinley-c5 Route has to offer, you’ll think nothing can surprise you already but it’s not a Takbo.Ph race without its surprises.  They made a small adjustment in the route by extending the stretch of McKinley Parkway until the area near SM Aura.  It was quick getting to that area after the Lawton stretch but going back was a struggle as it was a false flat that had you on long ascent.  I also made a mistake of trying a new flavor of energy gel that didn’t sit well with my tummy. I ended up running the last few kilometers on a bad tummy including the C5 flyover stretch.

Takbo.PH 20 Miler 2015

The Takbo.PH 20 Miler is not part of the run fest series but it was a special race design by Takbo.Ph to help those building up for their marathons in early February.  It was a 2 loop course around BGC, Makati and Lawton area that was 16 kilometers per loop.  It was the perfect marathon preparation for me as it featured a lot of climbs in Kalayaan Flyover, 5th Avenue and Bayani Road.  I wouldn’t have broken my marathon PR if not for this race.

Takbo.PH Runfest 2015

Compared to previous races, this had a more straight-forward course but still included the usual climb.  I took it a little bit easier during this race as I was under trained for this one.  I still managed to finish the race since I usually just go for a run-fest approach. Run the first part and enjoy the festivities on the second part of the race.  The thought of struggling in a race was also fuel for me to be more consistent in my training and also getting ample rest before each race.  I apply that lessons to this day.

And Back to Our Regular Programming

After the runners were released, I stayed at the Ahon Booth to talk about a topic of common interest, trails.   After a while runners started to come back with the 5K runners starting to come in before 6 am. I took some photos around 6:00 am and headed back to the Pacers Tent before 7:00 am to assist the pacers after finishing their respective times.  I sure wish I was out there running but seeing the usual smiles and people’s story of the race is the next best thing.  Congrats Takbo.Ph for another Epic Runfest. It was nice seeing the runfest at a different perspective for a change.

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