Tuesday, September 17, 2013

(Rainy) Sole Racing

Slowly getting my blog backlogs done.

I had the opportunity again to run in the second leg of the Safeguard-2XU Sole Racing series, this time moving to a new race location - SM Mall of Asia, last 18th of August. It had the same setup as the first leg - a race kit claiming expo which doubles as the race village come race day.

August 16-17: Race Kit Claiming
I was one of the first (excited) people who came to SM Mall of Asia's Music Hall to claim my kit and my fellow blogger friends'. I was so early, some of the booths were still being prepared the time I arrived. As usual, claiming was hassle-free, the staff were very friendly and approachable, and they even took time to counter-check each of the contents of the race kits in front of whoever's claiming them. I had the chance to have a quick chat with Runrio's Ally Lim before heading out, carrying 4 heavy race kit bags back to my car - mine, CJ's, Thirdy's and Rolly's.  

Race Kit Claiming at SM Mall of Asia's Music Hall
Race Kit Contents
August 18: Race Day
Race day is red and black day! Having joined Leg 1, I had the 2XU calf compressions. This leg, they gave away the 2XU sunvisor. I also purchased my third pair of Thorlos running socks (Thorlos 84N), the model which guarantees maximum cushioning, and I'm so excited to test run it on this event.

Red and Black! Alpha-mode ON!
Assembly time was 3am, with gun start slated at 4am. It was drizzling that early Sunday morning but nothing could stop runners from enjoying a good 21km race.

With fellow early bird Patrick "Runningshield" Concepcion
Met my favorite running couple Wes and Mish - they're part of the Six:30 Loveliest Team, competing in the Fastest Team Challenge
The 21km race route was mostly flat - a perfect PR course!
I had my usual target of a sub-2 half marathon, but with the flat course, I was hoping a sub-1:55. But alas, by the time runners reached the 6 to 7KM mark at Roxas Boulevard, it rained! Not just your ordinary rain, but a rain so hard visibility was low. I had races before where it rained but not like this. Surprisingly, I enjoyed it. It was a perfect reason to skip hydration stations and keep on running. I was a bit concerned though that with wet shoes and wet socks, the dreaded blisters would come next. Fortunately, I was wearing Thorlos, and it delivered as expected - no blisters whatsoever!

Half-way point. Wet as hell!
The race, with its limited participants (a thousand runners), is as intimate as it could get. That for me is the best feature of Sole Racing. It's also a venue wherein you could see mostly seasoned runners participating, so you'll get the adrenaline rush to go faster.

Before the final right turn at Seaside Drive
Almost at the finish! Tired. Wrong running form. Haha!
Yay, I managed to still do a sub-2! 1:59:48 to be exact, haha! Amid the heavy and wet shoes, I'm contented with my results and still consider it an achievement. Of course, post-race is the time to meet runner friends and take snaps.

With Thirdy, Rolly and Coach Mherlz
With Team Alpha1 teammate Bry FFS
With Wesley, JP, Rolly and Gilbert - the fast bunch
We stayed for the awarding ceremonies and the raffle. Thirdy was one lucky guy, winning a Timex watch in the raffle. I had no doubt Six:30 Loveliest Team would bag the Fastest Team Challenge award. When they went on stage to receive their trophy, I was a bit envious. I wish my running team's still active. But everyone has their valid reasons to be on a hiatus so it's no big deal. I'm just emo. Hehe!

With Rikki, Rolly, Mommy Vimz and Thirdy
Six:30 Loveliest - Fastest Team Challenge Winners! Congratulations!
Post-race breakfast at Chowking with the usual suspects
I placed 128th out of 825 21km finishers. Since the results released were based on gun time, I plugged in the data at MS Excel and created my version based on chip time. Haha, excel geek. I then posted below image on FB, including results from celebrities and runner friends.

Consistently doing a sub-2 weee!
Leg 3 is on October 27 at Nuvali! Surprise, surprise!