I’ve been joining races for a year now and from what I’ve experienced, it’s a hit and miss thing. Races, sometimes are a hit, at times they just miss the spot. Recently, race organizers have been coming up with runs that are all hits, and so far, the runaway number 1 hit would be this just concluded race.

Pre-Race Run

I arrived at the main gate of Clark at around 3 am. Since the start of issuance of the RFID chips was at 4 am, I decided to start my warm-up jog from here. It was my first time in Clark so to make sure I didn’t get lost, I brought with me a map which I periodically looked at as I jogged my way to the parade grounds.


– M.A. Roxas Avenue –

Clark’s main road. According to the map, I just had to follow this road until it reaches its end which was marked by a monument of Pres. Roxas. What the map didn’t tell me though was that this road was slightly uphill from the start almost up to the finish (about 6 km). At this point, I didn’t realize that this was just a preview of things to come.


– Pres. Manuel Roxas Monument –

From here, I turned right, and jogged until the intersection… where I saw this sign…


– glad to be still on the right track –

When I arrived at the registration area, the NB people were still setting up and since I didn’t want to stay idle too long, I decided to continue my warm-up and jogged around the area some more.


Running around Clark was quite a treat. Even at that early hour, I felt relatively safe since the roads were well lit and there were roving guards periodically making there rounds. The air is definitely fresher and less humid than it is in Manila… thanks to all those gigantic trees within Clark. Lucky DATC who considers this area his weekend long run place πŸ˜€


After feeling already warmed up, I went back to the registration area, picked up my chip, and chatted with the other runners who were already beginning to fill up the place. I then met Jonel, left my bag in his pick-up truck (thanks!), did a little stretching, before proceeding to the starting line…

The Race

I went to this race without a definite plan. Was I going to really race, or treat it as a long run… as it turns out, I did neither. I initially wanted to just make this as part of my long run for the week, and I was on my way of doing just that. However, once I reached the 1st set of hills at around the 2-3km mark… I just felt an urge to run up fast and thus zoomed up the incline. So from this point on, I decided to treat this run as part of my hill training by doing intervals (~ 4:50-5:15/km) on the hills and recovering (6-6:30/km) during the downhills and flat portions.

At the Fontana area, I continued this ploy of mine… even if that stretch of road turned out to be around 2-3km of a continuously uphill road! The incline wasn’t jaw dropping but it was still a difficult run up the road. My pace was beginning to slow down near the turnaround point but it was still a little bit faster than the other runners as I was passing a lot of them. But as I reached the crest, I slowed down my pace to help me recover for the grueling hills that I knew I was still going to meet in the course. AsΒ  I slowly jogged going downhill, almost all the runners I passed on the way up, passed me by on the way down πŸ˜€

Somewhere before the final climb (which was steeper than the Fontana incline) in the area called “the Ruins,” I was able to catch up with Coach Rio’s running group which included Doc Doray, Jaymie and Mark Parco. Just before the uphills, Mark and I decided to try and speed up our pace and to try to maintain it as long as we can. Surprisingly, we were able to maintain a steady pace of ~5:15/km the whole stretch of that long uphill climb (~3km)! After the last hills at km 23, I told Mark that I was already spent and that I would only run the last few kilometers at my recovery pace. Mark also slowed down and I was content to run at this pace up to the finish. However, nearing the last kilometer mark, Mark began to steadily increase his pace. Since I didn’t want to be left behind, I foolishly also increased my pace and kept up with Mark. We ended up sprinting the last kilometer at a 4:10-4:20/km pace. Nearing the finish, I think Mark noticed that I was losing steam so though I knew he could have gone faster, he instead was egging me on as the finish was already so close. I think we crossed the finish at just the same time. (unofficial time – according to the extribe website –> 2:30:19). Thanks Mark for the company and the push! As always, I got to meet and chat with other runners, bloggers, and this time other doctors at the finish line area.


At the finish, I saw Jonel (who at that point had already run an extra 5km) and joined him for additional kilometers. However, after running 2 kilometers, I already felt tired and my feet were already aching so I decided to call it a day… as Jonel still continued to add on the miles. Along the way, Jonel and I ran with Bards and Chito as they were also running extra in preparation for their Singapore run this coming December.

Stuff I Learned/Appreciated From This Race

  • Extribe and New Balance organized one of the, if not the best, races so far. The route chosen was great and challenging. There were so many water stations, serving bottled water and the occasional 100plus, that I’d reach the next station and yet the bottle I got from the previous station was still half full! There were marshalls, arrows and kilometer markers to make sure we wouldn’t get lost in the course. There were also a lot of freebies at the finish, bananas, an energy drink, multivitamins, bottomless water and 100plus, and a finisher’s medal πŸ˜€
  • Running with company can push you further. I probably wouldn’t have been able to maintain my pace during the last few kilometers of the run if I was running alone.
  • Runners are a wasteful bunch. Though it was great that water and the 100plus were being given away by the bottle, the problem is that the runners would only consume half of them at a time. The rest, they just throw away. Such a waste.
  • The 100plus drink can be tolerated during a run as long as it is de-carbonated. During the Adidas 21k, I remember a lot of runners complain that their stomachs became upset after drinking 100plus during the race so when this was the drink offerred in some of the water stations, I was a bit apprehensive to get one. However, I knew I needed a source of sugar during the run especially since I was going to do hill intervals so I still grabbed one. I “cured” it of its stomach upsetting properties by shaking it and releasing the gas as I ran. Once de-carbonated, the drink became just similar to the other sport drinks in the market.
  • I love hills.

15 thoughts on “NB25k08

  1. You really seem to have enjoyed the race with the way to did your speed plays. I agree on the 100Plus Drink. I didn’t like taking it during the run. But after the run, it was a good cool down. Feels like Coke. πŸ˜€

  2. Great to see you Joe…without the backpack for a change πŸ™‚
    Yup, Extribe has a great track record for these top notch races they organize.
    Hope I can pace with you at the hills in future races πŸ™‚

  3. dr. joe, nice race report. i really admire your stamina. i thought jonel was joking when he said that you jogged from the clark gate to the starting area. let’s go for the ultramarathon!

  4. Hey brother, it was great seeing you again. You are an animal by running almost a marathon before the 25km!!! And then you call it a warm up. Glad you enjoyed the hills. I agree about the waste of water, the problem is, sometimes we dont have a choice as it is not practical to run with a bottle half filled if you only need 100ml or so. It is sad though, rather have cups of water, the help or even spunges filled with ice water. God bless and see you at the races.

  5. Ibang klase ka talaga doc. You run faster uphill than downhill, and your 21k time is faster than your “10k”. Congratulations, another great run for you!

  6. I cant wait for you to race Doc Joe! Next time you go downhill, dont purposely slow down. Just let your legs “roll” and use the free ride.

    You were beside a mestiza girl when I left you, is she the one?

  7. Hi Joe. Congratulations and think it was good that you treated it as a long workout. I saw some of the course by car when Gene, Wilbert and I drove back to the hotel afterwards. Fortunately, it was less humid than last week for the runners.

    Thanks for everything over the past couple of weeks. Enjoyed meeting with you. That training run with you will be one of my top priorities in 2009! Have a good weekend ahead!

  8. hi!

    jinoe… yup, really enjoyed that run πŸ˜€

    levy… hehehe nice seeing you too. see you at the upcoming races!

    BR… thanks! di na kita kayang masabayan, di na tuloy ako nasasama sa action shots ninyo hehehe πŸ˜€ go ultra!

    PC… great seeing you too! see you this sunday.

    run unltd… thanks! till the next time πŸ˜€

    philip… wups, i ran almost a whole marathon that day. The warm-up jog was only 12kms πŸ˜€ ummm… well, i ran holding two bottles of water, with another bottle tucked in my shorts… added bonus of working the arms while running πŸ˜€

    DATC… thanks! the less humid conditions really helped, kaya had a better time than the adidas KOTR. yup, ran the hills faster by a full minute as compared to the downhills and flats πŸ˜€

    mark… if there’s a run sa january, i’ll probably race that one. sinasanay ko pa ulit katawan ko pakiramdam ng mabilis tumakbo e πŸ˜€
    wups… wrong mestiza girl. kasama ni jonel yun, na special friend ng pamangkin niya πŸ˜€

    wayne… yup! will be looking forward to that training run as well πŸ˜€ glad you arrived in SFO safely. have a nice weekend too πŸ˜€

  9. hey joe, you are certainly ready for the milo42 and fyi, your milo race packet is with me na.so that only means one thing,we gate crash milo42!

  10. hey jonel… yup, ready! as long as it’s just slow running hehehe thanks! go milo bandits! πŸ˜€

  11. Joe – medyo mali ang istorya mo. I remember us catching up with you and not the other way around, before we did the hill surge. You were doing your fartlek runs while we were slowly conserving our energy and plodding along the course.

    But that was a great finish. I don’t think it was foolish since you were fresh after the run. It’s foolish if you throw up in the finish line. Remember my advice, conserve your energy before the finish line and run as fast and smooth as possible when you approach the finish where a lot of people are watching you. Akala nila mabilis tayo yun pala sa last kilometer lang. Japorms lang pala!

    I was actually going for my 2:30 target time which was close. That was the only reason I pushed the pace.

    I predict a sub 3 marathon in your future. You got the base and all you need is a little more specific speed training.

    Regards Mark & Tiffin

  12. mark… hmmmm medyo naduduling na siguro ako sa pagod nun, kaya nalito kung who caught up with whom hehehe thanks for the advice, will be doing just that in the races, lalo na kung may mga photovendo guys πŸ˜€
    sana magkatotoo and iyong prediction… thanks!

    chito… just look for us after races for that round 2 of running πŸ˜€

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s