Run United Philippine Marathon

“You’re leaving right after the course? Why don’t you stay for meeting while you’re there?” That was my boss asking me why I did not opt to stay longer in Melbourne after my course on Disability in Developing Countries in the University of Melbourne which ran from 30 September to 4 October. “Well, the people I work with in the University were in the Philippines at that time and I have squeezed in a meeting with people there during the course.” That was my official response. The real response was – “I am running a marathon on 6 October so I need to be home on the 5th.”

“I will be running a marathon on Sunday when I get back to the Philippines. I actually registered so that I will be forced to run the distance as I am training for a marathon in December.” That was me talking to a colleague one afternoon tea while doing the course. Well, yeah I have been lazy these days and long runs were very difficult for me. That is of course not the main reason why I joined the Run United Philippine Marathon 2013. I joined because I want to complete the Run United legs having completed legs 1 and 2. But yeah I also want to do it for the sake of doing it.

I know I am not that prepared for the marathon so I promised myself to continue training while in Melbourne and I did. I ran twice in the cold streets both in the morning around the campus for around 40 minutes. On my trip going home, I did not drink wine even if I had nuts and cheese and grapes on my table, I opted for water (very difficult to do!) I also tried to sleep on my trip home which I managed to do while dreaming of the wine.

So when I landed Saturday afternoon, I dropped my luggage at home and joined friends for dinner which was my only carboloading activity. We ended dinner at 8PM so that we’d all get enough sleep as we need to be at the starting line before 2:30 as streets will be closed for the 3AM gun time. When I got home, I prepared the stuff I needed for the race and slept for 3 hours then went to the starting line.

The plan was to run with my bald brothers but there was only Me, Rex and Lucky who is planning to beat his PR. The original plan was Lucky runs with Rod but Rex and Lucky arrived late. We were among the last ones to start the race (around 4 minutes after the gun start). Then there we were running at an easy pace. My plan was to run in that pace for 21K then start walking after that.

I started my run/walk earlier than the 21K mark. I asked Lucky to go ahead while Rex was already behind us. 5 posts run, 1 post walk. That was what I did after the 21K mark. I saw familair faces and greeted them along the route. I alwayssucked my stomach in every time there is a photographer in sight. Run, walk, run, walk with occasional extra walk breaks then I got to the 31K mark which is near the finish line. Wow, there were already finishers!

The sun was out at 7AM and it was just difficult. I still continued the run walk cycle until I reached the finishline. I would usually be running the strecth to the finish line but this time I didn’t. I finished in 3 hours and 25 minutes. It was a slow one for me but I still managed to be on the 90th percentile. Not bad, not bad at all.

12K away from the finishline

12K away from the finishline



About Kit Atienza

A researcher/runner/triathlete/cancer survivor who found himself in the world of development work. He enjoys, reflects, and rants about things while doing his job, improving his personal record in running distances, and training for the IronMan in 2016.
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