My First 21k Run

My First 21k Run

Racing gives me a higher level of concentration and clarity. To be a runner is to know that running changes life. It’s not always in the obvious ways, like pounds lost or a renewed sense of energy. It’s new opportunities. It’s an attitude or a new belief that allows a series of random occurences to string themselves together.

So I did my first ever 21K run.

I’ve been running for almost three years now and the journey has been far fetched wonderful for me. I had come in a running routine in the morning; seeing the sun rise on the horizon and having to breath the breezy cold air. 5 in the morning. It is the perfect definition of nature among people who live in the busy life of a city. There are less people and of course there are no traffic. Today I only run in the morning. If there are marathons I will participate, my daily routines are set in the evening around five to seven p.m.

Another journey that change through me is motivation. Like any average people out there we dreamed of something big for ourselves. Something so humongous that when we tell other people about it they would either mock us or laugh about it. Yes, I dreamed to be an in the olympics. I dreamed to be in the platform and have that gold medal around my neck as I smile in front of the cameras with pride. Oh, I forgot to say I was already running before I dreamed to dream. I started with slippers, then proceeded with shoes then run for weeks without any knowledge of proper running (to this day I still don’t know some terms like pacing) I just run. Do you know that moment when you are pulled for it? No one would tell you to do it but you would do it. I’m not familiar with marathons or any such. I just run because I like it. That moment when you call it to be passion. That moment when you say`oh it just happen.` I go out and run..Then months after I stumbled on a video in a television. It was running. There were fun runs. Then I look it up into Youtube, then I search some more hungry for it, though I never watched any training videos prior, that was when I chance upon by the name of Usain Bolt.

You see, I was a runner, back in my grade school and high school years. I really like to run. My friends would play chase and I would always get to chase them. They would chase me and they would never catch me. They praised me as being the fastest kid in the block. I run fast. And so thus I thought I can be like Usain Bolt. I can dash a one hundred meter mark in less than ten seconds. I pick up my shoes and with a new motivation in mind. I run as fast as I can. I look at Bolt and told myself I can do like him. Again, I don’t know techniques and proper ways of running. As a newbie the moment I step out of the house I give everything I had. I run as fast as I can. Looking back I knew my run in the early months of runnning journey wouldn’t even reach a 1kilometer mark. I will ended up supremely exhausted and would just walk back home. That routine will go on for weeks and very slowly I will add up the distance. My primary motivation? To be an olympic gold medalist….. I was young, unknowledgeable and without any plans.

A year or two would passed and that dream would die. I’m 23 now, I started running when I was like 18. Back then I had no one to motivate me but myself. I will run almost five times a week. Today, I only run two to three times a week but I like it. I’ve grown as a runner, learn my lessons which is to take actions the moment I started running. You see, I tried out once in the varsity team of my school. One day. The next day? I didn’t return. But that part will be save for another article. So I’ve been running. I run before because I want to run, then I want to be an olympic gold medalist, then back again for the sole purpose of it: passion. Running has bought a lot in me. It bought me to push myself in every way. In disciplining myself when procrastination, anxiety and laziness struck. It pushed my physically. My schedule is to run for forty five minutes daily. After my 45 mins run I will walk to an oval. An oval street in our subdivision. The place has yet to be built with houses. I will run the oval as fast as I can, and then walk. This is around 500meters. I will run again, and then walk the same distance. I think runners call it interval training where you do top speed and then walk. I’ll do about 15 rounds of this. The walk is dedicated for medidation and deep thoughts. If you are a runner you would understand the benefits that a runner’s high give. That elantric moment where you can’t explain it and just go on with the flow? That burst of higher level of concentration and clarity. That is what I mean. The feeling is so ecstatic. After the fifteen rounds I will walk back home. Sometimes I will drink the entire five hundred ml of Gatorade, sometimes I will just drink water. Then to end the exercise I will finish it off with fifty push ups. And that’s it. My running for the day is done.

Last Sunday, I did my first ever 21k ran. I’ve ran first a 3k marathon, followed by 8k, 10k, then 11k. Since I started running for the 10k category my trianing schedule is always 45 minutes so it surprise me that I did well in the 21k category and finish it within 2:20 One hundred forty minutes. There were times I thought to myself I should just decide to walk which is not wrong at all. This event is just for fun but I like pushing myself and told myself to never stop and never walk. Always go for the jog. I did jog all the way. The only time I walk was when I stop by the hydration booth. I was really proud of myself to do this 21k because prior to this event I was hesitant to join. There were other factors. I had an activity by Saturday the whole day,it lasted until late in the evening. I’m one of those irresponsible guys who set a day to go to the club the day before my run. I had one beer, an easy talk. I arrived home by 11p.m. The thing was I can’t fully put myself to sleep the moment I went to bed. I went to the bathroom and glanced at the clock. 1:00. I went back to bed and tried to sleep. I woke up 3:00. So that gave me less than two hours of sleep the day before I made my run. What made me join the race and choose the 21k? You might be surprised by what I’m about to say.

Weeks prior to that race I’ve already thought to myself to run the 21K category. The running event I joined before that was the Gatorade Run in MOA. I told myself choose the 21k for two reasons: I’ve been running the 10k a lot and has not been improving and second the singlet shirt available was XL for the 10k (I registered late). The only available shirt for medium was set in the 21k. I ignored it and go for the 10K with the plan to give away my XL addidas shirt. I ran the 10k in the Gatorade Run……My family regularly attend a Charismatic Church. In that Church they announced a fun run that would benefit a charity. My mother turned to me and I told her no. My running event for this year is over. The next one would be the 7/11 run and would be my fist ever 21k run. I’m suppose to run my 21k in January.

The mass ended and we were about to leave when my mother and my brother stop by the booth of Brown Race Run. They were telling me to join. I wasn’t supposed to join and my brother don’t even run. But he likes the shirt. I believe that was why they were there the first place. My brother only likes that shirt. Again, I said no but being the good brother that I was, seeing the purpose of everything I gave in to their request and agreed to run. I look at the brochure. Look at the categories:3k,5k,10k,21k,41k. Knowing I had a full day scheduled by Saturday I chose the 10K category immediately. Then look at the brohure and thought about it. The 10k run didn’t have a time chip. If you run regularly you are familiar with race organizers. Runrio is the best running organizers they had it all cover but since this one was only a charity event they didn’t have what you would expect Runrio would have.

I heard some racers didn’t get to have their finisher’s shirt when they crossed the finish line because stocks run out. I also heard those late runners for 42k didn’t get to completely finish the whole 42k as roads were closed immediately after the first wave went out. I also experienced crossing with other runners without any marshals, we had to cross the street and fight our way with vehicles. Anyway back to the point I looked at the 10k then the 21k and wondered why the 10k didn’t have any time chip. (This is the one you put in your shoelace to time your run.) Hmm. So I internally debated. I told my mother I’ll go for 10k, then after some time I gave up and finally told myself I’ll go for the 21K run–21k run.

I ran the 21k. I thought I’ll have an injury because late in the run my feet hurts already. I also thought that when we descend the overpass we’re about to reach the finish line. Boy, I was wrong. We turned around and had a longer distance. I was push to run to my limits. Aside from the fact that I’m used to run every run I only get less than 5 hours of sleep as fun runs are set by Sunday and the day before Sunday is Saturday, as if I didn’t state the obvious it was because I’m an owl person. I sleep 2a.m. almost every day and woke up late. But this is 21K so what made me be able to finish the run? Well, the secret is to have a breakfast, popped two tablets of multivitamins and drink Milo for Adults. I add milk and five teaspoons of black coffee in the Milo, stir and drink. I also learned from previous experience that you should not drink coffee before a run. The coffee will make you thirstier during the event. Coffee will dry your throat. My solution? Drink a lot of water during the run. I did drink a lot of water before we leave the house. I gargled, drink and especially put an ice cubes in my throat. Once I hop in the car I stop the drinks and relaxed myself, which is difficult the coffee is already taking its effect. So I think that was the reason I did well. I was like bursting with energy. Oh did I already mention I was late? I started the race just after 16k gun shot! I really had to catch up. I passed by the 16k wave and later joined the 21k runners. I reached the finish line with 2:20 on the time board which I didn’t notice was there before the run. Remember why I joined the 21k? For my brother and for the…time chip. Well, up until now I was still waiting for the race results and to see my name on it. That is the purpose of the time chip, right? That is why I join the 21k. Anyway I had a lot of fun. Another reason I’m not supposed to set my run that Sunday was because I had a seminar early in the afternoon that would last in the evening of Sunday. I failed to attend that as my mind wanders around. I’m already irritated and frustrated without any reasons by 11a.m. I wasn’t sleepy but I’m tired so I canceled my event for Sundy. If I attend the event I would arrive late again, the next day would be Monday and I have an early class. So I better just go home and rest.

So there you go…Until my next running journey.

Pick up your shoes, go out there and run. Trust me, it only takes 2 minutes to do that. Once you wear your outfit there’s no stopping you.

Go out and run,

See you in the field!

Date: 12/07/15