Botak42: Long run daw

Running a marathon is never easy. Deciding to run another one after bonking big time on your first one is even harder. So I figured if I pretend it wasn’t a Full and just a typical long run it would be easier.

And long runs, of course, is best shared with friends. 🙂 So early one morning, my friends all got the usual BardsBaliwText. It read, “You wanna do a 42K long run?”

And you know what they say, “Birds of the same feathers … must be the same birds!” One by one, they replied and agreed to run long with me at the Botak42K. We all had different goals, 30, 32 and 35. Last week, we were even kidding ourselves that we won’t run the whole 42. Intense state of denial. I, mistress of evil plans, was of course planning to run the whole 42. Sabi ni BR kasi to train for a Full, its okay to run the whole distance. So why not!

Prep to the next level. Once it was agreed that we will really run Botak, preparation went into full gear. We actually had 2 meetings, one was to analyze the race route and decide pitstops (Dear Mr Organiser: Sir we committed the race route to heart. I even posted it on my desk so I can look at it often and slept with it under my pillow. Sayang naman effort ko.) The second meeting was also our carboloading and thanksgiving/welcome back to NotIronNose. Before the videoke started last Friday, the race map was marked, support teams paired up and runners matched to their favorite Gatorade flavor.


Drafting Ria. I was ready to try the Full distance again but it didn’t mean that I was no longer traumatized by SG. The thought of running another Full makes the the tip of my nose cold.

 And so I decided to seek a little help. Officemate Ria who has several marathons under her belt was recruited to help me cross the finish line running. She asked me if I had a time goal. I said I just wanted to complete the distance running. She knew my SG story, so she nodded and said that we will cross the finishline running. And that is how I ran my second 42K. I drafted behind Ria.

with KaPace Dindo and Ria
with KaPace Dindo and Ria

Ria, Maraming Salamat! 

Pre-race Panic. Minutes after getting to our meeting pace, I had to rush home again. I forgot my race bib! And so my impromptu warm-up was a mad dash to the taxi line near Ascend. I got back way before gun time because the race started late.

Km1-20.5: The BHS-MckinleyHill-Heritage loop is my playground. So I was comfortable during this part of the race. We were going faster than I wanted but the 630-645 was manageable. As Ria said, it is better to keep at this pace because we can avoid the harsh sun at C5. Once we settled on our pace, a few more people joined Dindo, Ria and I including Chito (Sundaywarrior). We pretty much stayed together for the rest of the 42k.

Running C5 was extra tricky last Sunday because of all the roadworks and occasional dead rat. I was just thankful that one of the runners had a back-up vehicle, a Landrover,  that helped screen us from the fast vehicles along C5.

Upon reaching Km20.5, I was so relieved to see another T2 support station. Lito and Angela was on hand to provide us Gatorade. Mesh, Lester and CoachSalazar were also waiting and ready to join our “long run”. After putting sunblock, quick massage with giga no pain and drinking gatorade, we were off again. Mesh, Lester and CoachSalazar joined our merry pace group.

Km20.5 then up Kalayaan, down to Buendia up to Pasong Tamo  Km21 and beyond is the start of the danger zone for me. I have done a few Halfs and I’m able to sustain my race pace. But after Km21, the little devil started playing tricks with me. I was chatting and singing but I was getting worried. Can I maintain this pace? This is where I bonked in SG. No, no, no! 

I was so glad that CoachSalazar started running beside me. His quiet confidence helped drive away my doubts. So what words of wisdom did he tell me. Nothing much, he just reminded me to stay relaxed and to focus on my breathing. Even after we parted, whenever I felt fatigued, I could hear him saying over and over again “Inhale 1,2. Exhale 1,2.” These simple phrases kept me focused, thanks coach!

Meeting Km36 Marshal. After the the turn around at Pasong Tamo, the original race route was a right towards Ayala and left at Makati Ave. However, when we were approaching Pasong Tamo for the first time we saw a km marker that says Km36. We all looked at each other and collectively  said that it couldn’t be right. MarshalDude insisted that he was Km36 and that we should head back to the Kalayaan Flyover. No way!  We ran a few more meters to look for another Marshall who instructed us to head towards Ayala Ave Extension then right to Kalayaan. 

As I write this, I realise that MarshalDude was right. He was Km36 …  after you have done the Rockwell loop! He should have been checking on the bands and strings runners were wearing before giving directions.

To Rockwell and back to Pasong Tamo. This was probably the hardest stretch of the race for me. It was getting hot and people are beginning to walk. Very tempting. But Ria kept running and I kept on drafting behind her. Fort Strider volunteers helped a lot of runners in this stretch by giving water. Thanks Fort Striders.

I don’t know if you were lucky enough but one houses near the Estrella turn around was hosing down runners. Thanks so much sir. It was a very kind gesture and we all appreciated it.

Buendia up Kalayaan down to the FinishLine.  After the 2nd turn around at Pasong Tamo and finally completing 36kms, Ria finally inserted walking breaks for us. Thank goodness. I was starting to go deaf again. We would run on pace and insert a walking break to recover. We repeated this from Ayala up to the finish line.

The End. I crossed the finish line with an unofficial time of 5:22. Far from a BQ, but the start of my marathon redemption story. I am happy.

T2 and friends had a great long run last Sunday. Harry and Dingdong have their own redemption stories. Keti and Bogs finished their first Full. Kristine, Vince and Essie ran their goal distances. Emer looks like he is all set for Secobia.

And I have to admit, I was worried, but I was happy to see NotIronNose but definitely IronWill Mesh back and running.


At the finish line with Emer, Ria, Bogs, Mesh, Harry, Kathy, Kristine, Dingdong

At the finish line with Emer, Ria, Bogs, Mesh, Harry, Kathy, Kristine, Dingdong

PS. Oh and I finally got a race jumpshot! Up to now, I don’t know how I was able to land this jump. Pure dumb luck!


And now … Xtn is asking again, “What’s our next race? ”


22 thoughts on “Botak42: Long run daw

  1. Hey Bards. I like the race jumpshot. I don’t think that I could do that at an end of a 42K.

    Congratulations. It looked like you guys were enjoying the experience. It sounded like a weekend of redemption for all of us. Take care.

    Jumpshot was taken at around km21 by Dindo’s driver. It was a good way to release some tension. Not being dependent on the race organiser for water helped us enjoy this race.

  2. Hey Bards. Good job! Hope I would do well in my first marathon as you did here. Kayong mga full marathon finishers ang mga inspirations ko. 🙂

    thanks wilbert! with all the training runs you have been putting in, im sure you will do well also on your first full. this is one of the great things about blogging, we are able to draw on each other for support. if i had a bad race/run, i just read other people’s blog to draw inspiration.

  3. Niiice spreadeagle jump shot. It’s our default mountaintop souvenir pose 🙂

    tamang-tama pala na i did my jumpshot sa kalayaan flyover. oh and good luck sa TNF!!!!

  4. Congrats on redemption but we all you knew you could do it even before SG! Happy for you! See you at Milo!

    you know what, i took more than the 4 weeks we talked about, but you are right, you do get used to the increased mileage. nasanay na rin legs ko sa bugbog hahaha. see you sa Milo!

  5. Congrats Bards. Finished strong, finished fierce. Sa’yo nanggaling ‘yun.

    hehe korek ka dyan. And thanks for taking the time to give us a heads up about the route in Rockwell. helped a lot! and congrats on your race too! see ya!

  6. Congrats to you and T2! It’s really good you guys had support groups along the way.

    Hopefully I get to run a full marathon too next year.


    thanks neil. it was a good day for T2. a lot of planning (mostly harry hehe thanks!) helped to make it a good experience for us. Good luck on your training for your first Full!

  7. Congrats again! What’s a BQ?

    I only realized after looking at pics from other blogs that the updated race route was posted somewhere in the start area. The naughty race organizer didn’t bother to communicate this beforehand….

    boston qualifier … hehe not that i’d even dare to dream about it. even if im 75 na yata i still have to finish at 4h30min to qualify.

    sneaky little …. indeed! the starting area wasnt even lit before race started paano natin mababasa. aysus!

    great to run with you. til our next “long run”.

  8. Ei Bards, nice to read your story, I somewhat share the feeling of redemption. I was mulling on going DNF somewhere in KM 30 but your constant prodding to continue gave me the push.. congrats and thanks!

    ey chito. thanks. and if you see me walking sa Milo, please return the favor. til the next Full!

  9. what’s the next race? how about we race on a 24-hour endurance walk?

    haha. i waited na hindi na ako dehydrated before i answered this comment. haha di pa ako ready for Ultra. a few more 42s. wait, kelan yung ferry run ulit?

  10. bards,

    good long run!! too bad didnt see you at the finish. only saw harry and doc d! ang init na kasi (and i was not even running!!!!) so decided to leave probably just as you crossed the finish. good idea to long run with ria. i will do that on my first full, i’ll contract ria also, paki sabi na please, QC intl, haha!!


    thanks! i heard “you” had a great finish time sa 10K ah hehe. i keep telling ria nga may alternative career na sya. see ya!

  11. Dear Bards – Congratulations! You did very well. I am happy for you.

    thanks sir. it was hot, it was hard. but nobody said a marathon was going to be easy. but most of all I more fun … and that is the main diff for me between my 1st and 2nd full. seeing and cheering for familiar faces and friends helped a lot too.

  12. hey bards!

    glad to hear you guys did well on botak…now all the more i miss having that support group especially during long runs…

    i’m slowly influencing people here to get into running…from 1 new recruit, im now up to 3! bwahahaha! world domination next!

    world domination, one city at a time haha grabe tin, winner talaga that we had a wonderful support team. in July, you will have the Full T2 experience.

  13. Bards – Hardcore ka talaga. Congratulations on you redemption!

    Regards Mark & Tiffin

    thanks M&T. Redemption is good … but i have a few more goal times to cross off. Takbuhan na ulit!

  14. Congrats bards and T2 members! Long time no see at the race. Nasa field work pa ako sa Palawan islands up to tubbataha. Nag shoot ng video ng project namin doon. I was supposed to run 21K sa Botak

    thanks BroJ. palawan to tubbataha. wow, soundsfun! i hope you are getting to put in some runs in Palawan.

  15. Congratulations on your 42K run Bards. Galing mo!

    haha masipag lang. but it really felt good to finish it strong and not crawling like the last time.

  16. Hi Barbs!

    Congrats on your 42k kakainggit. wala pko 42k but I wish my first 42k will not be organized by the same organizer of this race. More power and hope to see you guys in BHS these days!

    The Running Ninja

    thanks. you know whats so funny … my first Full was really well organised. and I bonked big time. this time, the race was poorly organised and I’m actually very happy with my run. hehehe see ya!

  17. Well done on finishing a marathon. Something I dream of doing one day.

    thanks. and with your current finish times, im sure when you do run your marathon, you will do great. 🙂

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