As I was preparing for my first full marathon, I did not only prepare for D-day but also for the days after. I did not schedule anything on a Monday. I signed and sent out everything due for the week after. My driver’s bag has salonpas. There is one in my car. I gave one set to my friend Rhea. These are all in preparation for a possible injury, muscle pains, cramps, or anything that could possibly slow me down during or after the Marathon.
D-day comes…each kilometer was slowly conquered….hills were climbed…downhills attacked…and survived the flats under the heat of the sun…and there I was, running the sweetest 50m run to the Finish Line.
Other than congratulations, almost everyone would ask me – Kumusta? Anything painful? And I would pause, then say, Wala. Am I in denial or what?
I went home and got the same question…Wala talaga!
I woke up on Monday morning and I am soooo okay…and I have nothing scheduled for the day (haha..praning kasi!) Had a slow breakfast, worked from home, answered emails, chat here and there, facebook, Takbo.ph SB (I seldom do this). At 5pm, I’ve got nothing else to do already. I was torn between going to the gym or having a recovery run. So I texted Coach to ask what I should do…20minutes jog and stretching. Great! The sun is still up so I heard mass first before heading to Ultra.
I was on my second laps at Ultra when Frank Indapan (an Elite Team Bald Runner) appeared behind me. He is also doing a recovery run. We ran together and he shared the Bald Runner Team’s winning stories last Sunday while I shared my feat to finish my first marathon. Before I realized 20min jog turned into a 30 minutes run. (My Run:Frank’s Slow Jog).
I got the same question again from Frank —- if there was anything painful as we were running. None, really. So I still joined Frank in a few minutes of drills (which aims to losen up the muscles). He asked the same question in every stretch we made. And I said, “Wala talaga painful. I must have done something right?!?” And he agreed and from the looks in his face, he finally believed I am okay
So, what could that be? Before D-day…..
- Since day one of my training, Coach asked me to go back to the gym and focus on strength training on the legs. I didn’t comply immediately but made promises weekly until Coach gave me tips on the use of elastic band instead as an exercise if I can’t make it to the gym. And I did. Eventually, I went back to the gym once a week. ( I have a lifetime enrollment since 2004 anyway, might as well use it.)
- I hate these interval trainings. It is a series of repetitions of work (50m,60-40,200,400,800) with recovery periods in between. At the Ultra oval on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays, we would hit the oval together with my classmates from the Bald Runner Clinic/Speed Training, doing all sorts of workouts. It would normally start with negotiations with Coach. “Coach, lima na lang…wag ten”…or ha, 800?, continuous run na lang”. Coach Titus doesn’t give in though. And I know, it is for the better. So I gotta love it!
As part of our warm up for a speed session and as part of a running strength/core conditioning session, Coach would always incorporate various drills on certain days. Drills pa lang, ubos na energy namin. But then again, it was good that Coach never gave in to our requests for discount on the drills.
My program doesn’t really include a very high milleage build-up. I guess Coach realized its impossible for me to meet such so he made adjustments. He only required me to do long runs on weekends (21-35k), peaking and then tapering on certain weeks. Some of my favorite long runs:
C-6 . Green Meadow . Mc Kinley
They say that no matter what amount or what kind of training you had, it could still be a different story on RACE DAY.
This might or might not have scientific basis, but from my experience, I could probably attribute it to the following:
Pacing at an Average 6:45.
- I tried to keep at such pace or lower to 7, peak to 6 throughout. A little faster on downhills and whenever there is a band playing…I was able to conserve so much energy that I still have enough from 30th to the Finish Line.
- During one of our 10x 400m repetitions, Coach gave pointers on when to peak, maintain and speed up. That was one of my most enjoyable 400m workout where I was able to hit 1:40 min to 1:50. Hmmm might as well apply the same strategy on race day.
- Thanks to Condura Organizers for having enough water stations! I took water in every station even when I don’t need it. I didn’t bring my hydration belt…
Proper Nutrition –
- I took GU Gel every 10kilometer-Thanks to Randy and Jerry who trained me on using this as a supplement during our Bosoboso run and to Iah for the tips before gunstart. I also have jelly beans which supplements the absence of sports drink. (I am used to taking Gatorade and carbonated drinks really doesn’t work on me well).
Switching Running Styles
- Coach taught us some styles of running that we can use when we want to speed up, when the muscles are tired, or when we want to take it slowly…He didn’t really give specifics on when to use, or when not use. He trained us to use those styles and do shiftings during some of our continuous runs at Ultra. Indeed it works! At some point I would feel a little stinging pain on some muscle groups. This reminds me to switch my style and the pain disappears. At some point also, I would feel I am heel striking (as some of my pics would show). Whenever I could hear my feet sounding off as it hits the ground, I know I am not doing it right, and I switch…
- I ran the race until the 30th kilometer with Michie, Jopeng and Jim (My friends from Lingkod). Cheering each other throughout was a big help. At the 30th onwards, I decided to push.
- The cheers from my new found friends from the running community also helped. Most of them are running ahead so we would see each other on turnarounds. I realized I’ve gained so many new friends since I took running seriously. 512 FB friends now and most of the new ones are from running…
Again, these are just my thoughts. Pardon me for not really expounding on most of the things I shared. (I might misquote Coach and mislead you hahaha)….You may contact Coach directly though, I can give you his number or join the BR trainings at the Ultra every Tue-Wed-Fri 6 to 8:30.
Lastly, I really prayed hard for this race. In fact, when my friend Marcus asked me for any prayer intention when he went on a retreat weeks ago, I texted: Item 1, Item 2 and Item 3 CONDURA MARATHON….
I prayed not just for a good finish but for me to reach the finish line UNSCATHED….
and I did! After a 4 hour, 49 minute and 14 second feat… I stepped on the mat and claimed the title: MARATHONER!
Told you, not an expert here…and I am not that fast hahaha….just thankful to finish my first with a decent finish time and unscathed….
Categories: Race Reports