Monday, December 5, 2011

QCIM3 42km: Respect The Distance

I started the race comfortably, at around 7:30/km. As this race included pacers, I slowly increased my pace to try to look for the 5:00 pacer.

The 5:00 pacer (Jonel Mendoza) may have started late as he whizzed by me at around km5. As I was dreaming of a sub-5 finish, I decided to stick with him as much as I can logging 6:50-ish per km pace.

THAT was not my planned pace for this race. I was supposed to try the first half at 7:10/km and try to win back the 2nd half at 7:00/km. Realizing that I'm not able to cope, by km13 I drifted back at around 7:15/km to recover.

As this was my first time to enter La Mesa, I found the area quite nice. It was a beautiful respite from my usual BGC races.

The 21km turnaround point was a few kms away so I decided to pick up the pace, suffering a side stitch in the process. I reached the turnaround point at 2:29. At that point, I forced myself to gulp 2 cups of Gatorade offered by the aid station. That proved to be too much as I felt bloated around 200 meters later. I wanted to throw up but nothing came out. I plodded on.

The side stitch, the bloatedness, and the hilly course within La Mesa overwhelmed me that I started to slow down after km22. I've hit the wall very early.

I felt a short relief when I landed Commonwealth avenue again but it was short lived. By km26 I was mentally defeated, with the pouring rain literally on my parade. I wanted to up the pace but my mind was forcing me to walk.

I reached km32 near 4:10 race time. Sub-5 was definitely out. I was forcing myself to get back in the groove, even playing Katy Perry's "Teenage Dream" in my head. It was only when I entered the UP campus with 8km to go that I started hitting sub-7:00/km pace again but only for about 500 meters max. It was overlapped with walk breaks.

With 5km left the 5:45 pacers passed me just before reaching the UP Oblation statue. Was my finish time for this race gonna be worse than my 5:53 first marathon? I just let everything go and chose to overtake the 5:45 pacers. I was still walking but the run sections of those last painful kilometers were, at best, 7-7:30/km.

In the end, I was able to escape the 5:45 pacers as I crossed the finish arc at 5:35:20 (Garmin time).

I've learned quite a lot on my race performance here (which deserves an entirely separate post). The 5:35 finish time was just reflective of the lackluster training that I prepared for this race. Poor training = poor race performance.

I need another marathon.


  1. congrats! It's still a 42.2km distance and that in itself deserves a pat on the back!

  2. Yup, that's what I keep telling myself 'til now. I've realized now that I'm thankful for finishing my 3rd marathon with no major injuries (except for the expected muscle pain that comes with running 42.2kms). Still, I think I've a lot to work on. But yes, a 42k finish is still something for me to smile about. :)

    thanks Dennis!

  3. CONGRATULATIONS on your Marathon man! You live and learn, live and learn man. Injury free is paramount I believe. You did great. When is no. 4? Thanks for sharing. Is there anything different you would have done during the race?


  4. @Kenley, yup thank God I didn't get injured, although my thigh muscles are still painful on a Wed morning. This is expected of course from running a 42k race for me. I think I should be ok by next week. Just refrain from running this week.

    As for that race, if I stuck to my pace plan and didnt follow the 5:00 pacer, the resulting finish time would've been different. Oh well, it's still another 42k in my book. :-)

    Thanks Kenley!

  5. Roelle-- i share your sentiments. We NEED another marathon!:-)