Saturday, August 4, 2012

Run for Light 2012

Last July 21, I ran a 10 kilometer distance at Run for Light, sponsored and organized by Stiftung Solar Energie Foundation. This German-based NGO aims to help communities in regions in the country that lives in areas where there is no electricity. The foundation provides solar energy lamps for families in poor communities to see better during night time.

It was a rainy Saturday morning at the BGC but still, hundreds of people swarm the areas of the Mind Museum along 28th Street. As we are about to set off, the rain fell hard but all of us was so fired-up to run in the rain. I was also excited because it was my first time to run in the rain barefoot.

At first it was a bit cold but after a while it was exhilarating. I never thought running barefoot never felt so great. After the six kilometer mark, as most of the runners started to slow down because of the added weight of their shoe due to water absorption, my pace was so constant. When never I felt thirsty just look up and open my mouth to catch the rain and I’m good to go, so I didn’t bother stopping by for hydration.

In the eight six kilometer mark, I spotted Kim Attienza, who is an accomplished triathlete. I passed by him and waived. One advantage of running in the rain is you are not exhausted easily and you are always cooled down. I was also surprised that my soles of my feet were not as tender as I expected. This only proves that the body can adapt to whatever environment it exposed to. Even after the eight kilometer mark, I never felt any soreness only the usual running fatigue I felt in my quads and calves which was very manageable.

At the last kilometer stretch, the rain even poured harder. I felt a runner is trying to overtake me in the last three kilometers. I never bothered to look back and check his or her identity but I used that effort of the runner to go even faster and prevent him to catch up on me. Somehow, this opportunity gives me the chance to drive my game a little higher, so I pushed harder. I few yards up a head were the last hydration station. I was holding myself not to stop because the runner behind me will surely catch up on me easily, but that last burst of acceleration was an exhausting one, so I gave in and grab a few gulps of water.

True enough, that runner sprinted away just as I expected. And I the runner was a “she” after all. After the quick hydration I gave all my effort to catch up on her. At the time when I’ about to get nearer, she would go faster, then I would go catch her again, but my effort was futile. She crossed the finish line a few seconds behind me.

At the assembly are I was able to get a chance to acquaint myself with her. She's Ms. Kimberly Williams, a foreigner,and I often see her in the past races I’ve been to. Through our conversation, that’s where I discovered that we shared the same thoughts in the last three kilometer as we tried to outrun each other. Her drive was: “I will never let this barefoot runner beat me”. In the last stretch, she was praying that I would stop to hydrate because that would give her the window to beat me and she did.

I lost to Kimberly that day but it was a great run for me because that “push” brought me a new personal record of 47minutes and 43 seconds for 10k.

Note: Photos courtesy of the Candy Factory

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