Tuesday, January 22, 2008

The Run

(Pictures courtesy of Denise llanos dee)

Nestled between the towering mountain landscape is Banaue. At 1200 meters it is surrounded by spectacular and complex rice terraces. One of the most popular destinations in Northern Luzon is also touted as the "Eight Wonder of the World". Roughly 8-10 hours away from Manila, Banaue will be the starting point of the Pinoy Ultra Runners: Run For Your Life Marathon for the benefit of Kythe patients.

On February 9, 2007 the runners will negotiate hilly terrains and the cold and wet mountain winds of Banaue-Sagada. However the long and winding roads, the fresh air and the beautiful landscape will inspire and help the runners reach the finish line in Sagda. A tranquil town on top of the mountains, Sagada stands 1477 meters high. Its nature and cool mountain winds is unspoiled and an ideal setting for reflection and relaxation. A fitting finish line for the run.

The ultra marathon will most-likely begin at the area near Banaue Hotel in the early hours of the morning. The cold weather will definitely bother the runners as they climb the steep hill. According to the information provided to the team Banaue starting line all the way to Mt. Polis will be 20 kilometers uphill. Paved roads and dirt roads have to be negotiated. Headlamps, hydration packs and windbreaker jackets will be essential.

After reaching, the summit of Mt. Polis the team will replenish its hydration packs and energy gels while eating rice meals. Then the team will begin its run uphill and downhill towards the busy town of Bontoc which is roughly 30 kilometers away.

(Bontoc will be hmmm sort of half way point)

Reaching Bontoc the team will meet up with other UP Mountaineers and friends and will attack the last 12-15kilometer uphill trail run to Sagda. According to one of our runners the weather there is really cold and its been raining for quite a while, so the roads are slippery and muddy, a real challenge for the team. Banaue-Sagada run will provide an interesting and dramatic background for the team to raise funds for Kythe and its patients. Help change lives a kilometer at a time.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Banaue-Sagada Run

First Time

(Wow!!! Models!!! Thanks to Boy Siojo for the pictures)

Last Friday members of the Pinoy Ultra Runners had their pictorials at R.O.X (Recreational Outdoor Excahnge) in Bonifacio High street the Fort. It was a different experience and the team was not used to it. We were used to running together, planning our ultra marathon and usual gimmick but never a photo shoot! Hehehehehe. It was a lot of fun and it made the team look like a professional team with the uniforms and other stuff. But for the most part the team enjoyed this welcome break. We had fun going around R.O.X looking at the different equipment and trying on different gears for the pictorial!!! Sana amin na lang yung gear hehehehehe!!! Thanks to the staff of R.0.X as well as Dino, brand Manager of Columbia our photographer, Ken of The North Face for organizing and accommodating us, Roel Chan marketing Primer Group for all the support and help.
(R.O.X provided a great back ground for the pictures of the team. Before the Ultra Marathon, R.O.X will be displaying our pictures as well as information about our run and other activities like pact runs.)

(ROX is really huge!!! Three floors of outdoor equipment at reasonable prices. An amazing store that would cater to anyone who dreams to have adventure outdoors.)

(Nice uniforms!!! Dani, smile please!!!)

The Subic Marathon

Josaw, Pen, Me, Olive and Ige.

The Pinoy Ultra Runners decided to run the Subic Marathon as a training run. As always when we say training run members of the team will try to face off with other runners of the pact. The end result will be a standard racing marathon for most members. For some it will be a training run for the next ultra marathon. The team arrived Sunday morning sleeping during the 2-3 hour drive from manila courtesy of Boy Siojo. Accompanied by support Jan and Levi the team readies for another memorable run. The race was straight forward long challenging terrain but nice cool weather and scenic landscape. Beth and Olive were in the front doing a magnificent run, Jose and Josaw(her first marathon congrats) was in the middle and brining up the rear was Me and Pen(also her first marathon and longest run ever). It was straight forward training. One thing that caught my attention were the Kenyan’s my my!!! I saw them in the television but nothing will prepare you for the speed these guys can unleash. These Kenyans are very amazing, like gazelles being chased by lions in the Serengeti.

During the New Balance 25km last year I was introduced to Sir. Willy. A powerful runner, energetic, 50 something runner. He competed in the Clark Marathon last week and now he is doing another one here in Subic, amazing!!!! This was his 40th Marathon. Hmmm a future Ultra Runner? I think he said yes. hehehehe.

The Kenyans!!! They came out suddenly!!! A blistering pace which tore the field apart. Even the camera had a hard time capturing them. Wow!!!

Josaw and Jose. Consistent and strong and will be finishing their first ultra in several weeks. congrats on the marathon Josaw.

Me and Pen. Strong performance from this multi talented athlete, powered by determination and of course Levi as a support crew she was able to finish her first marathon and longest run ever. Ganda ng Jersey!!!

Beth and Olive, finishes the race a little over four hours, not bad. lack of sleep and nervousness hehehehe made it a little tricky for them. Olive will be biking next day!!! Hahahaha. Peace Olive.

The race was well organized, and we were really happy, the marshals and supports were well provisioned and it was a tough marathon course. For Pen and Josaw the hardest part was the last 5-7kms. And the most agonizing part of them all was the half loop run around the oval which seems like forever. The team finished with smiles and full of energy, but very hungry. Well we really need that energy, the next Run for Your life Marathon is a couple of weeks away. To all who joined the marathon congratulations and see you again in the starting line.

Monday, January 14, 2008


Kythe is a non-stock, non-profit organization that provides psycho-social care to children in hospitals, especially the chronically-ill and children with cancer. Kythe pioneered the Child Life Program in the Philippines. Trained Child Life professionals, along with Kythe volunteers, provide various services to children and families, which include education, preparation and distraction for medical procedures as well as therapeutic play activities inside and outside the hospital. Support programs for families, especially parents, are also made available. Kythe's aim is to provide support during the illness of a child, which is a most trying time in the family.

Kythe is currently affiliated with eight (8) government and charity hospitals around the country, namely:

  • AFP Medical Center (AFPMC)
  • National Children's Hospital (NCH)
  • National Kidney and Transplant Institute (NKTI)
  • Philippino Orthopedic Center (POC)
  • Quirino Memorial Medical Center (QMMC)
  • UST Charity Hospital (USTH)
  • Davao Medical Center (DMC)
  • Tarlac Provincial Hospital (TPH)

Kythe continues to work for more support so that more joy can be brought to more children and more hope can be felt by more families.

For more information about Kythe, call 376-3454 or visit their website at kythe

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Weekend Wet Run

Saturday was a dreadful day for running. Despite the wet and cold weather Beth and Josaw decided to continue its training run on the roads leading to Sierra Madre resort. Popular for bikers with its steep hills and winding roads the girls powered on and try to complete a 20km route uphill and downhill. Both runners enjoyed the sights and cool weather. For the two runners the difficult part was not the uphill but the downhill portions since it pounded heavily on the runners knees. At the end of the day the two girls had a good training run, for a bigger challenge up ahead for the team.

(Eat and drink a must for any long runs)

(Beth and Josaw reaching the Cottages)

Saturday, January 5, 2008

I can go the distance

The past several races was preparing me for another big event. It was a way to distract me and made me miss running for long hours. The increase in run distance by the ultra running team could only mean one thing we are targeting another epic run. We are doing lots of races to basically expose the team but for the most part we are doing another way of training. Race to train. Joining triathlons and runs to basically train since we are quite bored with the usual routes and routines. But what are we training for, well we are still planning it, but we wanted to challenge ourselves once more.

Time to start our long runs, probably to stop myself from getting bloated for Christmas. Or allow me to eat a lot during the holidays. We have already made plans for a target run for January or February. The only thing we can do is to increase our mileage. Keep running. The cold weather is here!!!

UP Triathlon(Pasmathon)

The UP mountaineers organized a sprint triathlon. I was excited since this was the first place and first time i joined a triathlon. Racing back in UP brought back my newbie days in the world of triathlon. A lot of UP mountaineers joined also adding extra fun for the race. The weather was perfect and the race course was set. Beth my team mate in the Pinoy Ultra Runner joined in for her first triathlon. Amazing race, nice way to end the year a perfect triathlon. The distance was short making the race real fast and more enjoyable. Moreover most of my friends were there. Mabuhay ang UP Mountaineers. Congratulations to all!!! Pictures courtesy of Dennis website.

(Reminded me of my first triathlon, I was using a heavy Mt. Bike. I look confused and tired before. Now i look exhausted hehehehe)


(Hector "kulang sa pansin", Me"Sleepy" Macky "first run")

The year is about to end and I really want to end it with a bang!!! There were still several races lined up. The New balance 25km run was over. I realized that i need to do some running again. Well i cant complain it was a training run. So i finished the race the slowest training pace. Base run, i had to start from scratch. But i was in no mood to train just yet. I wanted to so something fun and unusual hehehehe. Eventually i ended up joining the Men’s Health Urbanathlon. Yehey. A 10km run with obstacle courses. I was able to dragged my friends and a newbie runner. I told them i will pace them and lets just have some fun in the run.

It was a cold and wet morning. Several hours before the race, powerful rains drenched the whole area. Upon reaching fort Bonifcaio i saw quite a number of people stretching and filling out registration forms. Familiar faces greeted me and i saw a bunch of UP mountaineers some of which were my batch mates. All of them were actually marshalls of the race!!! Hi!!! Mia and Alex.

I was eager to race not only to pace my friends but basically to have fun. No pressure and enjoy the obstacle course. Hehehehe. Also another main reason is to display our team uniforms to expose the North Face Ultra running team. After last minute briefing, the race was off, my friends and i stopped in front of our relatives!!! What else picture taking hehehehe.

The race was not what we were expecting. A full 4-5km loop then go through an obstacle course. The run another loop again. We were actually expecting the whole course to be full of obstacles hehehehe. I was actually also expecting it would be a run like the first part of James Bond Casino Royale when he was chasing the bomber all around a construction site. Jumping buildings and going through other obstacles. A parkour type of race. Hahahaha. But it was really fun, since i was with friends and family and for the most part there was no pressure at all just have fun. Hehehehehe.

(Hector, Frenzy Condom ad yan!!!)

(Congrats macky on your first 10km)

In the end it was a break from the monotony of running. I had a blast, spent time with love ones and for the most part another race completed for the year. Cheers!!!

New Balance 25KM

Its been a while since the team ran together. Last time we ran together was the 100km run last July. Maybe the training and hardships pushed the runners to do other sports and huwag na muna magkita hehehehe. But it was really fun to run alongside with the team. We eventually decided to do race in order for us to train hehehehehe. Race to train was the new motto of our team. We decided to target the New Balance 25KM run in Clark Field, last November. We got to Clark Sunday where we devoured the local cusine and dined at the AFC or Angeles Fried Chicken hahahahaha. At night the team got some rest to relax for the run next day. As for me I hanged out with the “best support crew” and drank several bottles of beer. Hehehehehe. A big no no for a race next day. But I am not racing I am just going to run to train hehehehe, and show our new uniforms. Hahahahaha

(Olive, Beth and Me. "Nev's this unifrom is eh ultra runners eh hmmm eck!!!)

(Jan cabanos, thanks for the pics!!!)

Sunday arrived the team woke up around 4AM to prepare the race at six. We ate our meals(power bars and fig newtons hehehehe, while olive ate the chicken from AFC), relaxed, prepared our gear and freshened up. After a few hours we were already at the start line.

It maybe just me but i somehow feel that beth, olive and me were all nervous. It was just another 25km run . There was no pressure we just have to run. Hmmm what could be the reason. I tried to enumerate in my head.

1. We were not that prepared and trained.

2. We were so exhausted from the ultra marathon that we completely ignored running. Hence our confidence dropped.

3. This was a race in Clark and we knew the course was difficult.

4. Our uniforms, and we were presented as a team.

Most likely the answer will be the last one. We were all a little bit shy wearing our new team uniforms. But we all know we were there to train, for some race, but for the most part generatesome exposure for the team. The race was off!!!

(As usual Beth powered through the course!!! Go Beth Go!!!)

In the end Beth and Olive won!!! They were in the top three in their respective age groups. Maybe its the pressure from the uniforms. Hehehehehe. Nah they are just really fast and strong. As for me hehehehehe, several minutes and light years behind them. Congratulations girls!!!!

(Congratulations Olive. Another strong performance)

(We all agreed the race course was really amazing. Long hot climbs in the end)

(Congrats Beth and Olive, Nev's saan medal mo? hehehehe)

Team Uniforms

Team uniforms are here. And what can i say. Amazing. I feel like a professional athlete. Thanks to my brother for the uber nice and cool design of our uniforms. Thanks for Roel and Ken for the jersey sponsorship. ROX and The North face. ROX is the biggest outdoor sports store in Southeast Asia. It basically specializes on everything you need to face the outdoor. Its three floors, will cater to any sports enthusiast. Cant wait for it to be fully opened. Thanks again guys!!!

Revisiting Triathlon

After the ultra marathon, i was depleted in all levels hehehehehe. Not only from the run but also from the stress of organizing and managing the run. I was planning to rest for the whole year. Since it was difficult first and second quarter at work. I was teaching five sections, and i was also teaching new subjects. So its pretty hard to read and take time to study. I just really want to relax and enjoy. Eventually my best friend hector told me he wanted to race in the half ironman white rock triathlon. He needs a coach and a training partner. Hmmmmm, Sige game ako!!! There goes rest and relaxation!!!

Half-Ironman!!! A 2km swim-90km bike- 21 km run. Last time i joined one was several years ago. Its gona be difficult getting back to triathlon. My road bike is crap and my swimming training is more pathetic. But it would be nice to join and visit the sport again.

After spending for a new bike and investing in my swim hector and i found ourselves in Subic getting ready for the race. I haven’t trained much because of work and i wont be racing much sasamahan ko lang hector hehehehe. I was able to bike for three-four weekends swam a kilometer or two and run hehehehe, still lazy due to the ultra marathon. I was in the starting line and i realized that the race was very organized. Triathlon has gone a long way from the races i joined before.

I'm here nothing to do but race, in the process i also received a tri suit from Andrew!!! Thank You so much!!! Epic is the brand and specializes in cycling, running and outdoor sports. The tri suit was very good, nice fit and excellent materials. Thanks again Andrew. And the race was eventually started.

(Mike in Yellow - The best support crew, Hector in Green really nervous to race, Me in Red- Here we go again)

(Me, TJ, Myles and Hector "Swim? What swim, I Thought it was Bike and Run!!!!)

(Hmmmmm this is long!!!)

Ack ang hirap lumangoy!!!! It was a difficult swim for me!!! The current was strong and there were so many fast swimmers. Emerging from the swim in the transition area I gave hector instructions for the bike and tell him to hydrate and i will watch out for him in the bike. Next thing you know i forgot we were racing probably because i got used to adventure races taking time in transition points. But this was triathlon dapat mabilis!!!! Ack transition time 5minutes, others were only 30 seconds to 1 minute. O well who’s counting.

The bike was okay, i was enjoying the roads and enjoying my new cheap bike hahahahaha. After the turn around point i knew i was way behind the pact, i duno i just cant kick in the high gear moreover im watching out for my sponsor hector hehehehehe. Return back i knew i had to make sometime so i can catch up some people in the run. In the bike-run transition same thing happened i was not mindful of my time. I waited for my friend and was eating my energy bars sitting down hehehehe.

(21km run why does it feel like 42km hehehehe)

(Finish line, whats the next in our list sponsor?)

When the run started i realized that i was really running strong. Its not a fast time but i was expecting a much slower pace. The ultra marathon gave me the confidence, i was running hard and strong. I was able to catch up people in the turn around. I was finally enjoying the triathlon. It was the last discipline and for the most part no more flats or mechanical failures. I was able to climb the hills with ease. I was really expecting to have a difficult time. But i was feeling good. Last stretch i saw the finish line!!!! And sprinted and yehey triathlon done!!! Amazing year!!! Hector crossed the finish line and was ecstatic “Yes!!! I can cross out triathlon sa list ko na things i need to do before 30!!!” hahahaha. Amazing race, most of all “i really enjoyed eating!!! And recovery, Yellow cab New York’s finest!!!!

Here We Go Again

Wow last time i uploaded an entry was September. Hehehehe. Well the past few months was really difficult in terms of training and schedules. I am exhausted. However that doesn't mean the team and I aren't doing anything. Highlights of what we have been doing will be posted. Hehehehe. As you can see we are increasing our training and updating our website and blog. That means only one thing we are about to embark another epic project. Ouch my knees suddenly jerked hehehehe. What could it be. Well we are not yet sure, but I see another ultra just around the corner. Hopefully we can execute this properly. Start running.