Greenfield Race – The gods must be crazy!
For the record this race ushered in online registration in the Philippines. This was the first time where a participant can register, pay and wait for his race kit in the comfort of his home. I experienced this complements of Finishline.ph. Thus no more of the long queues and hassles of manual registration as Finishline.ph raised the bar in Philippine racing.
Prior to race day, I had several long runs of at least 18kms and modest tempo and easy runs in between, not to mention a great tune-up race the day before at the SlimmeRun. I was close to being hubristic and was looking forward to improve on my Condura Run time as I felt that I was at this time better prepared. So I thought. But the running gods thought otherwise.
I arrived at the race site at around 4:30am when people started to trickle in and had no problem parking. So by 4:35 I applied sunblock and donned all that was necessary for the race – the race belt and hydration kit. I was at the starting area by 4:40 just in time for picture taking with the Takbo.ph folks.
The race started promptly at 5:00 am. As I positioned myself at the tail end in the starting line so I could start at a slow pace of 7:30 per km. But I was wrong. I passed the Km 2 marker with a time of 12:15. I thought that someone must have been playing a joke at me. So I slowed down but before reaching the Pramana entrance, all hell broke loose in my stomach. Everything went wrong. I was thinking of making it to the tall foliage but the fear of snakes prevented me from doing such a thing. As I reached the entrance of Pramana I immediately noticed a security officer at the guardhouse. I asked if I could use the comfort room and he readily made me use it.
This episode took away at least 10 minutes plus it sapped me of energy. Nevertheless I continued to run at and then caught up with the slower runners. As I approached the second turn around point at Km 13 I began to realize that I was slowly being drained notwithstanding the energy drinks and bars that I had. To top it off, Number 2 attacked for the second time. Good thing there were portalets at the turnaround point! It felt like hell from that point up to the finish line. But as Prime Minister Winston Churchill once said during the German blitz: “if you’re going through hell, keep going”. I had to even if I had to run, jog and mostly walk or even crawl to the finish line.
Notwithstanding that personal misfortune, I was happy to finish the race at 2:52:44. It was a beautiful race. The scenery was lush greeneries and vegetation. My only regret was that when I arrived at the finish line, they ran out of finisher’s medal. My friend Amado Castro, Jr. also did not get a medal and he accordingly posted his comments in his blog. The lady in the finish line told me that the medal will be delivered to our home address. Well I just hope that the organizers will deliver the finisher’s medal which we all worked hard to earn.