My second run is for integrity

Monday, June 6, 2011 § Leave a comment

After Run for Japan, my first race, I knew I had to run again. That’s why the afternoon after that race, my sister and I found ourselves registering for I Run for Integrity. It was marketed as a running event calling out for a corruption-free Philippine society. The day I decided to join races I said I’d prioritize cause-oriented or campaign-focused races, so picking that race was easy. It didn’t matter if I had to wait for a full month and a few weeks. And boy, did I wait passively.

Passively means not running as frequently as I should, which resulted in an unconditioned body, which of course contributed to a slower pace and after-race muscle pain. And yes, I had all those. Joining a race without training is indeed a bad idea.

Before the race, I was naturally worried about my body getting injured. You see, it’s not anymore about performance, not about race time. It’s about safety. I knew how lack of training could take a toll on the body. You know, fainting in the middle of the race. Unbelievable cramps. Shortness of breath. But my lack of training was not my only concern. Have I mentioned I upgraded my distance from 3K to 5K?

My sister and I went on anyway, after having last-minute training the day before. Along with several others, we crashed into the starting line and sped our way through. The participants were almost running shoulder-to-shoulder at the beginning of the race, so I was zigzagging my way to squeeze myself into some available space.

The people began to thin as we went on. I ran past some runners, while some ran past me. At some point, I even ran alongside a 59-year-old Caucasian, who won second place in the 5K male category. Of course, he eventually ran ahead of me.

5K runners getting a good start

It was a pretty serene race. The sun didn’t come out intensely, and the temperature was tolerable. Midway through, though, my body heated up, so I pulled my singlet away from my skin to allow some air. Heating up and all, I ran through the race at a modest pace, only letting my feet to take some walk breaks when they revolted in exhaustion.

Despite my unconditioned body, everything went smoothly—I ran as much as I could, jogged if needed, and walked if called for—not until I reached the last meters and felt a burning sensation that started from my stomach and traveled to my chest. Heartburn. Uh-oh.

Afraid of what else my body could possibly feel, I resorted to walking. I couldn’t remember how far I was intending to walk, but I lost all awareness that I was inching closer to the finish line. Only when I saw my mother, who wanted to take pictures of me running, that I fully realized I had been walking for quite a while. She urged me to run again.

Not wanting to have a picture of me walking, I put on some speed and began running. And that’s when I heard the booming drum rolls and cheers from the finish line. Oh yes, almost there. So I burst into a speed I should have had earlier, ran past the other runners, and went straight to the coral. Finally.

My time? Forty-something minutes. (The official race results are yet to be released.) My time was almost twice longer than my last run. Still, not bad for a 5K run and an unconditioned body.

The race in one word: Success. The race was pretty organized, with lots of marshals directing the runners; plenty of kilometer markings; visible police, guards, and ambulance; well-functioning hydration stations; nice raffle items; and cool post-race program. I heard the pre-race program and warm-up exercises were pretty nice, too. Too bad we were late for them.

Ivan Mayrina hosting the awarding ceremonies

Me and my sis display post-race haggardness

Me, my sis, and Mama

Next run: Not decided yet. But I hope to run at least once every month.

Anyway, kudos to the organizers and the runners! I hope this race really established some sense of integrity in us. But that I have to debate with myself. See the photos below.

Fastfood styro

Talking of integrity, huh?


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