Sunday, May 30, 2010

A Week Of Adventure Runs

It has been a week since I arrive Los Angeles and as planned, I have done a good number of adventure runs during the week. It was not an easy task as the temperatures during the runs where quite cold and it was a must to schedule the runs in the early mornings so that I would not grab on the family vacation schedules during the day.

The following are snap shots of the runs made during the week;

One great advantage of the runs was the total calories burned 4937Kcal. Although I did my regular runs, the food that has been served and eaten during the week was way above my usual intake. It would have been worst without the runs.

Next week I am looking forward for my adventure runs in San Francisco and the areas thereby. Meantime, have a great weekend.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Long Beach 10.28k Run - Arthur Laforteza "SENIORRUNNER"

In the three years that I have embraced running as a sport and life style, I had the opportunity to meet interesting people and learned much from them. Running breeds a different type of people in general. It transcends and is beyond the social, educational, gender, religious, political and age factor of a person and instead focuses on the benefits and love for running per se.

Today, I was again blessed to these fruits of running, I had the opportunity meet and run with ARTHUR LAFORTEZA or SENIORRUNNER ( at Long Beach California and did a 10.28K run at the scenic spot of Long Beach followed by a lunch.

I came to know only of ARTHUR in my blog. Having blogged of my trip to USA, Arthur invited me to meet up and do the 10k run. Arthur is 68 years old, but, DO NOT BE FOOLED of his age as he will be able to beat a great number of young people out there in RUNNING. His latest accomplishment was completing the Orange County 21k Half-Marathon with a time of 02h06m32s last 09May10. Wow for his age I cannot even dream to attain such a time in my remaining running life. To think that the running bug just bit him only three years ago or when he was already 65 years old. Talk about late bloomers, had he started on his younger days, I just wondered how he should be now.

My son-in-law ALEX and son DENNIS accompanied me to the home of the LAFORTEZA at Long Beach, which was about 70 miles from where I am staying at Moreno Valley (a 1.5 hours drive). At about 8:10am we arrived at their home and had the opportunity to meet formally ARTHUR and his wife LUCY.

The 10.28k running route that Arthur took me was very scenic and is very foreign for a local runner like me. I will forego of words to describe the run and instead provide herewith the photographs taken during the run.

For complete photos please visit ;

After the run, Arthur hosted us for a lunch at the PARKER’S LIGHTHOUSE RESTAURANT. Thank you Arthur for your hospitality.

Arthur will be in Manila sometime February of next year and is very eager to join the CONDURA RUN 2011. It will be a different atmosphere of race condition, but I am pretty sure he will be a force to watch at his age.

Again, It was nice to meet you Arthur and Lucy and hope to return the favor when you come to the Philippines.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Run To Transform - Good Intentions Bad Result

Running in the Philippines is at its peak of popularity so much so that every Tom Dick and Harry has joined the bandwagon in sponsoring and/or organizing race events either for commercial purposes or for fund raising purposes.

It is because of this very reason that runners need to be wise and knowledgeable in selecting the race they wish to participate.
I have in he past been fortunate to select good races. There were however also times that races I have participated have been short to deliver what has been promised. However, today I have finally experiences the WORST that could be expected.

RUN TO TRANSFORM as sponsored and organized by KAMPILAN Multi-Purpose Cooperative, which is A College Fund Raising Event, is the worst organized race event I have participated in my running life span. I have intentional selected this race because it falls on the date that I have to leave for the states and I was hoping to enjoy myself of a 15k event before boarding my plane at night making the 14 hour travel bearable.

I registered at ROX sometime last week of April and was promised that race kit will be release on 1st week May then 2nd week May and lately Friday 21May10. On 21May my driver was at Rox until 7pm only to be told to collect the race kit today prior to the race. Given the hassle to collect the race kit prior to the race, I have to arrive the race venue at MOA early. To my great surprise when I reach the venue there was only an improvised registration table, which you are given a race number, which is not specifically registered, to you. The race bib number was distributed without a corresponding registration sheet that records your name and the number. The singlet provided was a 100% cotton material of a very bad quality. The type and quality is worst than those distributed during election campaign period. To make matters worst, what was displayed at ROX was a totally different kind and quality. The starting line does not have a chute/coral and in lieu of marshals there are instead police patrol cars. There were no portalets, no distance markers, and no segregation cones. Overall there was none provided by the race organizers. The registration fee was P500.00 for the 15k.

The organizers/sponsors might have good intentions or goals they should remember that when they open events to the general public it is their DUTY and OBLIGATION to DELIVER what has been promised by the event flyers and promotional notices.

After witnessing and assessing the scenario at around 5am, I decided to run instead on my own and map my own 15k route. At 5:04am I proceeded from MOA grounds to Diosdado Macapagal Blvd. going south all the way to Pacific Avenue and reversing northwards at the Coastal Road to Roxas Blvd. all the way to Philippine Convention Center and taking Diosdado Macapacal Blvd again back to MOA grounds for a goo 15km run.

My own improvised 15km run was great! However, RUN TO TRANSFORM was great DISASTER. Let this be a lesson to all.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Vacation Run - San Diego Rock and Roll / Golden Gate ETC.

On May 22nd I will be leaving with my family to visit my daughter at Moreno Valley CA. As with the previous years, I have incorporated during this annual vacation a number of runs, which I hope to accomplish before my return on June 14th.

On top of the list will be the SAN DIEGO ROCK & ROLL MARATHON which will be held on June 6th 2010. I have already a confirmed registration for this event since early February of this year. However, due to age and health condition I have downgraded my participation to only ½ marathon instead of the full marathon. Details of this marathon can be seen at

On the side, I have asked my daughter that we go for a couple of days vacation in San Francisco and is set for May 30th. Given this opportunity I plan to run on my own on May 31, 2010 from Argonaut Hotel which is just opposite PIER 45 and make a run all the way to GOLDEN GATE BRIDGE onwards to SAUSALITO for an approximate distance of 21km. I intend to run point to point and return to the hotel by taxi.

Another adventure run I intend to do with no fixed date yet will be at STA MONICA BEACH in Los Angeles.

For most of my daily run, I will be concentrated at MORENO VALLEY and within the area of LAKE PERRIS National Park. Last year I had good memories of the running routes I have made then and hope to duplicate the same this time.

Before any of the above, I still have one local race to complete on May 22, 2010 and that’s the RUN TO TRANSFORM a 15K which will cover the MOA and Roxas Boulevard area. Hopefully, the event will tire me up so that the flight to LA on the same day at night will be relaxing for me.

I hope to blog on all these runs. Wish me luck guys!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Fighting The Temptation Of Laziness And Boredom

As in any task or endeavor a major factor to consider as time passes by is burned-out or falling into the monotony and rigors of the task. In my three years of running I have learned to fight the temptation mainly by setting new goals and target on a quarterly basis in a year, which assures me of a continued flame to drive my motivation for a specific task. This is what I would call a TRAINING PLAN. And a TP should have a specific GOAL for the purpose of assessment at the end of the TP for evaluation purposes.

However, on a daily basis another type of obstacle will surely strike a runner when he lease expect it most during TP time. This if left unchecked will be a sure cause for fallout and failure of implementation of a training plan and failure of the goal set forth.  These are the TEMPTATIONS of LAZINESS and BOREDOM arising from doing certain task. These temptations become more pronounced during hot weather, bad/bed weather and time constraints of each person’s individual social and business life.

One solution I have found very effective to fight these temptations is to make varied running routes to lit up the excitement in ones self and for the time factor the only straight forward solution is FIND TIME.

Today was one of those temptation mornings for me. Having not registered in any weekend road race, the next best thing was to find an alternative running route. It was then that I decided to run at the Cultural Center of the Philippines complex and the Roxas Boulevard boardwalk. I the past I have found this route very interesting and full of Sunday strollers and with the wind of Manila Bay it would greatly reduce the temperature to more bearable run.

At 5:03 I was already on my run, which took me first within the CCP complex before proceeding to Roxas Boulevard all the way to Quirino Grandstand and back to CCP complex. On my return route just after the US Embassy, I noticed that there we quite a number of swimmers. It was a great surprise, as I know that swimming in Manila Bay has been prohibited due to the polluted waters, but apparently those swimming in the area were not following this.  At around 6:25am I was already back where I parked my car. I made 10.51km in 01h18m18s.

Another successful struggle in fighting the temptation of laziness and boredom.

Monday, May 10, 2010

May 10, 2010 - Running Workout And The Presidential Election

Today 10May10 is a very special day for all Filipinos. It’s the National and Presidential Election Day.

Being a public holiday, I took the opportunity to spend the early part of the day to my daily work out. At 5:28am I started my run at Fort Bonifacio area with the clear intention of completing a 10k distance. The temperature as early as it was at the said time was already at 26.5deg C and with a very humid atmosphere. Unlike normal days, there were not as many runners today probably they have instead decided to go on the polls early in the morning.

At around 6:48am I have already completed 10.26km with a time of 01h18m55s and burned 911kcal in the process. It was a really hot and then was soaked in my own perspiration and literally dripping all over.

By 8am I have already taken a bath and was on my way to my polling place, which was at Highway Hills Elementary School in Mandaluyong. From previous elections, I have already taken note of my precinct number, which was 0476A, and finding the place was the easy part. I have to queue to get a number and again I got the number after about 5 minutes. Then the long agony of waiting started. Up to this time I though I was an early bird as the number I got was no.9. Then I heard that they were calling number 18. I though I missed my turn only to find out that my number 9 is for the second batch and that each batch consist of 70 numbers. My watch at that time was showing 8:45am. During these times the temperature was about 32C and very humid with lots of people losing their temper. I promised myself not to add chaos to what was happening and instead just sit in one corner and await my number to be called.

At 10:20am my number was called and finally I got to sign the registration roll book and given my ballot. By 10:25am I have feed my ballot to the PCOS machine and finally the screen showed “CONGRATULATIONS”. The whole process took me 2.5 hours, which was longer in time compared to my running workout earlier.

Today was indeed a great day, I have done my workout and fulfilled my obligation as a Filipino citizen in participating in the election process. Whoever wins as President I pray that he be guided by the Almighty to lead this country for the betterment. To the losers, I hope that they have the dignity to accept defeat instead of the usual alibi that they have been cheated. God bless the Philippines!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Quindao China - Seaside Sightseeing Path 40.6km Running Route

From 25Apr-01May I visited QUINDAO China to primarily participate in an invitation golf tournament in the shipping industry. I knew before hand that I need to concentrate in my golf game during the trip to come out with a respectable standing. However, on the back of my mind I had the intentions to squeeze in between at least a couple of runs in Quindao.

Quindao is famous for SEAFOODS and TSINTAO BEER. But after having seen what the city has got to offer, it has one of the longest beach running path that you could imagine. From point to point it covers a distance of 40.6km. The pathway is either a boardwalk or cemented pathway purely dedicated for runners along a very scenic beach and coastline. The seafront has been used in the last 2008 Summer Olympics for the regatta, sea sports and rowing games. This is probably the reason why the beach area is well developed and the Marina and structures used during the olympics are still very prominent and open for the public to visit.

On 27Apr10 at 530am I did my first run. Not yet well familiar with the area and with a very chilly and windy weather of 10deg C I started from my hotel at Quindao Grand Regency Hotel and lead myself to the beach area. The view and the running pathway was an instant attraction to me. However, with very limited time and with a golf game still at hand I have to limit the run. I was only was able to make around 6km loop. However, I promised myself to make another run before returning home.

On 30Apr10 at 3:30pm with my golf games completed and already scheduled to return home the following day, I excused myself from other social events and instead did my run on the beach. This time the weather was very pleasing at 16deg C. Hoping that I would have greater coverage, I decided that I shall run point to point and take a taxi in returning to the hotel. I had two hours to take a leisure run and be back at the hotel before 6pm for other commitments. I was able to negotiate 12km during this run with interval stops to take pictures and marvel on the beauty of the scenery.

The pictures that I have posted with this blog will show you how beautiful is QUINDAO and why the city is a dream place for a leisure run, jog or just a walk. By the way, I played good in golf maybe it’s because of my running, which gives me more concentration and endurance. Regardless, I think golf and running complements each other.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

VSO Bahagi Run 2010 - Late Posting

(NOTE - This is a late posting due to travel pressures)

VSO (Volunteer Service Overseas) Bahagi Run 2010 was held today 25Apr10 at McKinley Hills at Taguig City. This is the 2nd time that VSO is sponsoring a running event the last time was in the year 2008.

Although I have to travel on the same day at 12:20pm a window of opportunity provided me to join the event as I have enough time to return home and proceed to the airport after the race. This will as well condition my body to be tired and on sleeping mode during the flying time of my travel.

I arrive McKinley Hills at about 5:10am giving more than enough time for the schedule gun start at 6:00am. What caught my attention as I was parking my car was that there were not so many cars in the parking area. I then assumed I was just early, I proceeded first to the plaza area and was surprise that the area has drastically changed for the better from the last time I have been on the place. I saw Que Gavan and DJ Cloe at the booth and took the opportunity for a little chitchat.

At 5:30am I proceeded to the holding pen at the starting area and it was very evident then that the expected attendance for the event is way below the expectation. At this point I had an opportunity to meet with Jinoe Gavan of who confirmed the matter. Minutes before the starting gun, my best estimate for the 10K participants will be no more than 250 runners. At this time the 5K and 3K runners were already within the starting area waiting their turn and my best crowd estimate will be no more than 1000 runners for the combined distances of 10K/5K/3K events. This only translates to more than excess supplies for hydration, which is an advantage to those in attendance.

At exactly 6:00am the starting gun was fired and the beauty and trill of the route dawned to all. The 10k route was perfect and challenging giving the runners the challenge of the McKinley Hills and Bayani Road all the way to the Heritage Park. From the start to the finish there were more than ample supply of hydration further, marshals were stationed on critical junctions to man the safety of runners as well a provide directional guide. Distance markers were posted. Leadpack the organizers of the race event did their job well. The race was a definite WIN to all the runners that participated. The race route and the race management were the winning formula. On the other side of the coin, it was a LOSS to the organizers as the expected turnout and attendance was way below the expectation. I could only but attribute MARKETING as the weak point of the event. I hope that VSO and Leadpack will review the actions they have taken prior to the race for a much better attendance in the future. Good sponsors and competent organizers only but deserve a well-attended race.

VSO Bahagi Run 2010 was a WINNER for the runners, but is a sad LOSS to the sponsors and organizers in term of attendance. However, the race was organized professionally and delivered satisfaction and joy to the runners.