Sunday, February 21, 2010

Superbods Run - Running Cold and Cough

With advent of summer and the sudden change of weather from cold to hot, it was regrettable that I have gotten my first flu for the year. Since Wednesday, I have been nursing a slight fever progressing to heavy and runny nose with unbearable cough. Knowing that the Century Tuna Superbods Run will be on Sunday 21Feb10, I stepped up on my medication and skipped with my workout runs for Friday and Saturday.

Saturday night, my cold and cough barely subsided that I had my doubts if I shall be able to run on Sunday. Nighttime, my wife was insistent that I should not run fearing that my condition would get worst. At 4am at the sound of my alarm, I immediately rose from bed and started "singing" to pretend that I was feeling well, however, as much as I was trying to conceal my real condition, I can not help by cough at times with interval of sneezing. Bottom line, I do not thing I really fooled my wife of my real condition. My mind was still fix on running the 21k, but with a self imposed condition that should I feel bad at any time during the race, I will stop and discontinue the race.

4:20am I was already in queue parking my van. The first thing I noticed was that there were a lot of cars already parked with still a long queue of vehicles heading to the different parking areas. This mean only one thing, a well attended race event. Thinking that the scheduled gun start for the 21k was still at 5:20am I was taking my time going to the starting line. Once at the starting line what immediately gotten my attention was the starting line stage (there where other stages) with a huge LCD screen. There were also two (2) LCD screens on the side of the starting arc. It was a great sight, signs of a great and successful event.

It was already inside the holding pen, when Coach Rio was within my area, I congratulated Coach Rio for a very impressive and amazing structures, stages, tents and layout of the race venue. Coach Rio was all smiles who was still nervous (according to him) hoping that the event will be a great success.

It was at this point that the MC announced that the event has generated more than 11,000+ runners. I did not remember what was the exact breakdown for each race category, but, it was a definite RECORD in the local race scene. We have really gone a long way in short time. Hopefully it continues and become more of a way of life rather than a fad. A common complaint in the running community is that entry fee for race events are getting more expensive. This is a correct observation, but, good things cost money. It is then on the individual to select his/her race. For me, what is important is that my hard earned money paid as entry fee should commensurate to the service delivered. However, I still do join P200 race, but, expectation and intentions are different.

A presentation of the 21k route was done on the two (2) LCD screen at the starting arc and was very informative and exciting giving each runner a foresight of what is in stored for them. After completion of the video presentation, the countdown for the start of the race was made. Ops, all along I thought that the race was to start at 5:20am.

At 5:09am the starting gun was sounded.

What I have seen along the route are all positive marks, hydration station are well manned providing water and Gatorade (as a side attraction you good looking gals and guys models of Century Tuna assisting, on these hydration station a portalet is provided in all station, on dark unlighted areas, a portable self contained generator lighting were temporarily installed, distance markers were well positioned (and of exact measurement at that), race category directional signs were prominent. There were sufficient marshals, but, as I have noticed on races in Metro Manila, no matter how many marshals you place, there will always be those irate, arrogant, and impatient drivers you encounter on intersections who insist on doing their own thing either crossing the path of runners or sounding their car horns intermittently. I just hope that such irresponsible actions will not result one of these days to a road rage accident on a race event. I guess it really is difficult to educate local motorist.

02h 39m 19s after I completed the 21k. I was glad that even with the runny nose and cough I was able to complete the race. The raw gross details of my run was recorded as follows;

Then it was time to queue for the finisher's shirt, medal and loot bag. There was a different line for each race category. Considering the great number of participants, the queue for each event was long, really long, just like a snake. It took me a good 30 minutes from end to end of the line. It was at this point that socialising with fellow runners was taken advantage of to while away the time.

On my way to my van, I came across the group of and was happy to have a group picture.

To all the runners that participated, I hope you had a nice time. To Coach Rio and his group CONGRATULATIONS. You have again raised the bar for all race organizers.

As I arrived home, I do not know for whatever reason, but, I started coughing! You could just imaging what my wife told me! I leave it to your imagination. I am grounded from today.


  1. Comments from my blog

    monching says:
    February 21, 2010 at 4:55 pm (Edit)

    coach, just want to know the reason behind the early gun start. other issues may be beyond the organizer’s control, but the gun start? am sure there’s a valid explanation. hope you can share with us.



    Coach Rio says:

    February 21, 2010 at 7:10 pm (Edit)
    I have no excuse and I take full responsibility for this. It was nothing more than a case of miscommunication. I actually took great pains to analyze and determine the arrival and departure times for each category, including the exact time interval in between the different gun starts per category (5:20, 5:35, 5:50, 5:55). We even did a run-through the night before to make sure everything goes as planned, which is why I agree with you that this is something within our control and therefore, could have been prevented had I given more attention to detail on the day itself in terms of proper communication. I will definitely learn from this mistake and do my best not to let it happen again in the future.

    Thanks as well and hope you accept my sincerest apologies.


    Coach Rio

    Richmond says:

    February 21, 2010 at 5:06 pm (Edit)

    Why do you accept 11+ thousand registrants if you cannot handle them well?


    Coach Rio says:

    February 21, 2010 at 7:28 pm (Edit)

    Hi Richmond,

    The truth of the matter is that I was caught between a rock and a hard place, so to speak. Several days before the end of regular and online registration, stocks of singlets and race kits were already running out. Our supply simply could not keep up with the demand but because we were bound to whatever was stated on the registration form in terms of the registration period on-going until Feb. 15, I had to make a decision to keep replenishing stocks until the official registration period was over. It was a choice between disappointing registrants who thought they could register until the 15th, only to find out that registration ended early, or taking the risk of handling more than 11,000 runners for the first time. I take full responsibility for taking the second option and I apologize if I was unable to handle the volume of participants as well as I had hoped. I chose the second option because based on our observation, most of the participants were first-time runners and I really wanted to encourage them to join the race, which is, for many of them, their first step towards a healthier lifestyle. It was a risk I was willing to take if it will translate to the growth of the running community.
    Hope you allow me to redeem myself in my future races.


    Coach Rio

  2. My apology letter

    Thank you Century Tuna Superbods Run 2010!
    21 FEBRUARY 2010

    To all who supported and graced the Century Tuna Superbods Run 2010,
    After four grueling months of painstakingly preparing for this much-awaited race, our dream event has finally come to fruition. Although we acknowledge that it was not as perfect as we had aimed for, due to issues such as unexpected bugs in the online registration process, an early gun start for 21K & 10K runners, with some 10K runners catching the tail end of the 5K runners , and several runners who got lost along the route, thanks to the collective effort of Century Pacific Group, Saga Events, PC&V, Fuentes Manila PR, Starcom Media Vest, Event King Secretariat, RunRio Inc., and FBDC, we came together as a team determined to rise above the seemingly insurmountable challenge of pleasing each and every one of our 11,344 participants on race day.

    Thank you to Century Tuna for believing in our ability to mount an event worthy of their status as the number one brand of canned tuna in the country, as well as to all our other sponsors for following suit and for helping us put out all the stops to produce a record-breaking event never before seen at the Bonifacio Global City.
    It was both an honor and a privilege to organize this race with the Century Tuna Superbods core team and sponsors, as well as for all the eager runners who woke up bright and early to participate in our event this morning, whose overwhelming enthusiasm in anticipation for the event, provided the fuel that kept us working on this project day and night.

    We hope that our continued efforts to raise the bar in race organizing will attract more newbies to try this sport that most of us have come to love. I feel so blessed to have been given the opportunity and the means to pour out my creative juices in order to organize a world-class event here in the Philippines. I take pride in pioneering the use of a full-LED start/finish arc and flashing the names and finish time of runners as they cross the line, an innovation never before seen anywhere else in the world, at least based on my experience as a runner. And I could not have done this without Century Tuna’s faith in me as a race organizer and being one with me in our effort not just to eat healthy and live healthy, but to revolutionize the Philippine running experience as well.

    To all those who have been inconvenienced in any way, I take full responsibility and sincerely apologize in behalf of my team. Aside from the shortcomings already mentioned, I just want to take this opportunity to personally apologize to one of our participants who felt dissatisfied with the first-aid treatment and service provided by our ambulance supplier. I will do my best not to let this incident happen again in the future and will make sure that the insurance provided to all participants will include transportation to a medical facility if requested by the patient. I apologize for not realizing this sooner and again take full responsibility on the matter.

    For every race that I organize, I always strive to do my best. But if some of you feel that I have fallen short of your expectations, again, I apologize, and hope you will allow me the opportunity to redeem myself in the future. I would appreciate as much feedback as possible as I am more than willing to find out how else I can further improve my future events. Please feel free to comment as you please and rest assured that I will take them constructively.

    Thank you so much to everyone who made the Century Tuna Superbods Run 2010 a huge success!


    Coach Rio

  3. i did not see anything wrong about the race except for the traffic of runners from the lesser distance races as the 21K runners fight for space on the narrow lane/race route at The Fort area. i congratulate coach rio for making this race a success. as for the early gun start and runners who need medical assistance, these issues are not the responsibility of the race director/organizer. it is the responsibility of the runner to prepare & train himself for any eventuality during a race and he/she should be always early in a road race.

  4. I guess with more than 11,000 runners it was truly a monumental task logistically. Hey get well soon Sir Amado! Drink your meds and hope to see you soon! :)

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  6. In principle, a good happen, support the views of the author