Monday, January 7, 2013

My Bike Routes in Metro Manila

UPDATE (June 8, 2016): I've started to blog for routes outside Metro Manila. Read my first of a series here.

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As a (wannabe) duathlete, half of the training includes riding a bike. In pollution and traffic infested Metro Manila, there is a need to look for venues that are not only possibly kind to the lungs, but also with less cars and other vehicles to make it safe.

So far in my almost 3 months of biking, I have come up with the following routes:

1. Mall Of Aseana grounds, Pasay City

From eye doctor's flicker account

The main road for this route is Sunset Blvd(?) which is at the back of the mall, facing the break water. On an early morning especially on weekends/holidays, the approximately 1km stretch is filled with cycling enthusiasts which range from newbies such as myself up to pro cycling groups arranged neatly in their respective pelotons. You can go around up to Blue Wave and then back via the MoA main street where the big globe monument rotunda is located. Completing this whole square, it is approximately 4-5 kilometers.

Safe: 4 out of 5 (cars start coming in after 9am, mall rats specifically, hehe)
Road quality: 4 out of 5, mostly flat
Volume of cyclists: Many
Recommended day to ride: Saturday, Sunday, holidays, up to 9am


2. Camp Aguinaldo, QC

Team 2Bottles Training Day


Getting in is challenging since you will be asked for proper identification and purpose, but I do see a good number of cyclists inside, including the Greenhills Tri Team, training inside the camp. My team, Team 2Bottles (yup, you've never heard of us....yet. hehe), has learned a 4-5km T-shaped route which has a lot of short and long climbs and descents. This is a good route for hill climbing (especially for that long stretch from AFPSLAI building up to the parade grounds). It's a good route for running too.

Safe: 4 out of 5 (cars are caused to maintain "some" speed limit since they're inside a camp, will pass through soldiers' residential areas so be sure to look out for pedestrians)
Road quality: 3 out of 5, with short and long climbs, descents
Volume of cyclists: Few
Recommended day to ride:  Saturday, Sunday, holidays, up to 10am


3. 38th Street, BGC, Taguig City


On Sunday mornings and if there's no race on this route, you'll most likely find me here grinding away with my bike. It's a modest route with almost no cars except for the few jeeps that ply the streets. The climbs are quite sufficient for training. The only downside for me here is when you can't ride due to an ongoing race, which led me to route number 4.

Safe: 4 out of 5 (few cars and jeeps go via this route)
Road quality: 3 out of 5, flat with short climbs and descents
Volume of cyclists: 2-3 on a Sunday morning
Recommended day to ride:  Saturday, Sunday, holidays, early mornings up to 9 or probably 10am


4. Lawton Avenue, Taguig City


Sometimes in order to find the best route, you need to take risks. This is the case for Lawton Avenue, a 2-3 kilometer stretch of good asphalt that provides cyclists the adrenalin for tempo or speedwork. The risk is to be wary of vehicles that travel the same stretch of road at 40 kph and up ---on a Sunday morning. You also need to be careful of those anti-sleep speed bumps that may cause problems with the tires later on. Going thru the side of it is most recommended. I advise riders to be extra careful when traversing this ride. By the end of the ride, satisfaction guaranteed.

Safe: 2 out of 5 (be VERY careful, eyes open at all times)
Road quality: 4 out of 5 (except for those speed bumps), flat with gradual climbs and descents
Volume of cyclists: you'll come across 10-15 on a Sunday morning
Recommended day to ride:  Sunday and holiday mornings up to 8am



5. Bayani Road, Taguig City

Long climb, long descent. This stretch of road should be part of thesufferfest's training videos. As a runner, I shy away from this road from training and I curse it during McKinley races. But this route will probably provide the most benefit in terms of improving power not just for a runner, but for cyclists as well. There are two long killer climbs: one from the C5 exit (bottom), and another long climb just after the Piazza mall.


Try it if you dare.

Safe: 3 out of 5 (be wary of taxis that roll out from their parked positions near call center buildings)
Road quality: 4 out of 5
Volume of cyclists: probably a max of 4 sadists on a Sunday morning
Recommended day to ride: Saturday, Sunday, holiday mornings up to 10am


So there you go. Do leave something in the comments section if you have a route that you recommend.

Back to training....


8 comments:

  1. MoA by a mile! Nice analysis Dua Dad!

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  2. Since you have already completed your first duathlon, I don't think the "wannabe" still applies. ^_^

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  3. @Armand, thanks!

    @Jacq, as they say, it usually comes in threes. So I need to do two more. Hehe...

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  4. Let me recommend Temple Drive - White Plains Drive - Green Meadows Avenue route outside Camp Aguinaldo.

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  5. Where can you ride your road bike on a weekday morning? do you know if they allow that on weekdays in aguinaldo? - PJ

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  6. Cycling is no longer allowed in Aguinaldo. Do you have any other suggestions? :( Thanks!

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    1. Camp Agui reopened to cyclists since late last year. The only reason cyclists won't be allowed to enter if they are on Red Alert. Hope this helps. :)

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