I capped off my 2015 with my third ultra marathon, which took place on the 29th to the 30th of December. The starting line was at the Rizal Monument in Calamba, Laguna. The finish line was at the Laguna Sports Complex in Sta. Cruz, Laguna, which also has a statue of Jose Rizal. Just for some quick history, Laguna was the birthplace and hometown of our national hero, Jose Rizal. The event was held on the date of his death, which then became a regular holiday named after him. Thus the name of the event as well.
The race started at 11pm, earlier compared to my two other ultras. Which meant that the conditions were in my favor... Not. Okay, so I started out good, sticking to my usual Galloway strategy. I think I was even on a faster pace for quite some time until the 34th km. I really am not a fan of uphells! I love them during training runs, but I hate them during running events. To cut the story short, I ended up walking on most of the uphill parts of the route. And also on the last 8 kilometers. Because clumsy me tripped somewhere along the way which caused some pain on my left ankle every time I ran. I ignored the pain, though, during the last stretch and was smiling like an idiot when I approached the finish line. I discovered the next day that my ankle was sprained because it was still hurting and it looked swollen.
photo credits: KrProd
Anyway, I finished with an awful time. Worst time everrr. But then again, in running, you cannot compare apples to oranges, if you know what I mean. Every race event is different. Even if the distance is the same (in the case of ultra marathons, it certainly is not!), the routes are different, unless it is the exact same event, and the conditions may vary.
photo credits: Lean Einzel
Overall, it was a good race. The route was definitely challenging. Quoting a fellow participant, "not recommended for first-timers" but joining it was still worth the experience. Every race is worth it, but somtimes, you will only realize that once you're at the finish line. Because, sometimes during the race, you might start to question your decision-making skills ("Why am I doing this to myself", just kidding). Anyway, I'm going off-topic. There was ample hydration and food along the way, although I did not eat much. Aside from water and Gatorade, there were eggs, bananas, some cupcake, and of course, ice cream. I had no appetite even though I was hungry for almost the entire duration of the race. But I did have some ice cream. Some of the aid stations were located too far apart from each other, but this was an ultra marathon, so one should not expect to be babied. Still a well-organized event, so kudos to Run Mania!
Some acknowledgements. Thank you to my runner friends and team mates (Team SCR and Team Ayala Triads) for their well-wishes and moral support. Thank you to the photographers for your never-ending efforts in capturing our running moments. Thank you to Jaja for accompanying me. And super thanks to the Ayala Triads support crew, Rhune and Albert, for catering to our needs on race day. Congratulations to everyone who joined! :)
photo credits: Aquizzed Snaps Photography
rank: 234th out of 467 runners, official time: 8:36:28