Ripping the road

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I haven’t posted in this site for a long time. I thought I’d break the hiatus by writing about my experience with Leg 3 of Rip The Road, a race I thoroughly enjoyed and highly recommend to those wanting to race a 10K.

My friends have recently caught the running bug and are now joining 10K events. I’m happy for them—we need to maintain our health and fitness as we approach our 50s—and to spice things up, we entered into a wager with a simple breakfast at stake.  Because our fitness levels vary, we decided to implement a handicap system.  I’ve been the more consistent runner, joining half-marathons and full-marathons here and there, so obviously I am the one that has to be given the greatest handicap.  The problem is I haven’t been running 10Ks for more than two years.

So last week I joined the Rebisco Run to get myself into the groove of things.  And I chose the Rip the Road to establish my “real” 10K time. Then, to liven things up,  one of my friends decided to join.  He, too, wanted to find out his “real” time.

The Rip The Road is the ideal venue for 10K runners to determine their personal best.  The mechanics of the run, where the top 1000 finishers get to run the Championship run—encourage competitive behaviour. There are no other distances in the event, so the field is not packed with 3K or 5K runners.  All runners are 10K runners, so if you overtake a runner, you know you aren’t overtaking some runner who is running slower because he is covering a longer distance.  There are practically no freebies—no lootbag, no medals—so the participants tend to be the “purist” runners, those who run for time and to push themselves. You can feel that the runners are there to run, not just to join or to be seen. Save for the uphill climb at the Kalayaan flyover, the course is relatively flat with none of the twists and turns one finds in the Bonifacio Global City routes.

The RTR run re-introduced me to the beauty of the 10K.  The 10K is a good way to measure one’s fitness.  Training for a 10K does not require two-hour long runs.  It is a distance that doesn’t tax your body as much as the longer distances, but it still leaves you gasping for air.

Thoughts on Earth Run 2011

This 10K run was supposed to be a “tune-up” run.  I ended up feeling competitive and finished with a 57:27 time.  Not bad considering I just came back from the flu and wasn’t able to do any running since Wednesday. Race results–unofficial as of this writing–can be found here.

Some gripes about the way the race was organized:

  • Sound system needs improvement.  Not only was the audio volume barely audible,the audio was fluctuating.  During the warm-up phase prior to the run, the microphone would switch on and off, which was evidently frustrating to both the instructor on the stage and the run participants.
  • No countdown before the gun start.  Just BANG! and the run was on.
  • No kilometer markings.
  • I read in Pinoy Fitness that there was a shortage of marshals at the water stations.  The stations basically became “self-service” stations.

On the bright side, I like it that they supplied a race number belt instead of the usual safety pins.  And the 10K route did not snake around Bonifacio Global City.