Monday, September 21, 2009

My 1st Sub-30 5k

In my practice runs around the neighborhood, I've etched out a 5km path thanks to Google Maps and verified by my Nokia GPS tracker. I've been running the route most of the time at a 6:30-7:00min/km pace usually during weekdays and finishing between 32-35mins. No reason for me to sprint it since I use the 5k as a recovery run after my weekend long run. Thus, since March 2009, I haven't dipped below 30mins in 5k ---be it on a race or practice run. The nearest I could go was 30mins 29secs during the Step Up for a Cause around May(?) I think.

Last Thursday, our driver ran the same 5k route in the morning and evening. According to him, he finished it below 30mins, probably 28-29mins. He's a year younger than me (34) so I can only envy him since he's really fast-paced.

The following morning I was scheduled to have my 5k usual practice run. My driver, still wanting to run, decided to join me. I told him that since he ran fast based on his time the previous day, I told him to take the lead.

He sprinted off and I followed. I looked at my Nokia-GPS and saw that I was pacing at 5:40/km. Since he was about 50meters ahead, I can only assume that he could be around 5:30-5:35/km. This was definitely fast, I thought.

He extended his gap over me by about 100-150meters towards the 2nd and 3rd kilometer. I was still keeping up at the 5:40/km pace and, surprisingly, can still manage it. Our driver, on the other hand, seemed to be slowing a bit around 3.5kms.

By the last turn to finish 4kms, I was only 10meters behind him. Suddenly, he stopped and leaned by the roadside. He seemed to be gasping for air. Naubusan ng hangin! I passed by him and said, "Ok ka lang?" in which he replied, "oki lang siiir pero masakit ito (ponting to just below his ribs)."

I recalled my 1st 10k practice run around LA's village, my officemate, wherein I experienced the same thing. "Nakalimutan mo kase huminga!" LA said. From then on I learned to be conscious of breathing especially when I try to work beyond my race pace.

I decided to pay forward the tip to my driver, "Di ka kase nahinga eh," I said nicely. He looked ok so I headed off to finish the run.

Looking at my Nokia GPS, I was still pacing at 5:40/km. WOW! Could this be happening? My first sub-30??!?!

I wasn't wearing my soundgear so I had to keep my mind concentrated on keeping up with the demanding pace. By the last turn, I saw that my Nokia GPS-tracker was nearing 5k. I stopped the workout and looked at the results:

Distance: 5.01kms
Average pace: 5:44/km
Duration: 28mins 47secs

Actual Nokia GPS-tracker stats can be found here.

WOOOOOOOOOOOOOW! A sub-30 performance! A practice run at that!

I cooled down (i.e. walked) back to see where our driver was. I assumed that he walked the last km since it took a while.

As he arrived, he said, "Sayang siiir, sikand place lang ako!" In which I laughed since obviously there were only two of us running.

Looking back at that practice run, it just proved that I can run below my usual 6:30-7min/km race pace. I could run faster pa pala. But I think I won't try to push it too much since running is a long-term, life-long passion. I don't want to get injuries due to my overeagerness to finish races in sub-XXs.

Give me a few years, maybe by then I could be as fast as Bald Runner or The Running Ninja. Hehehe.


  1. Congrats on your sub-30 Roel! Just keep plugging away at it, keep training, don't rush and soon the times will follow :)

  2. Thanks GBM! Btw, sa EcoDash I did sub-2:30. Does it count? Ano ba sub-XX pag half-marathon? sub-2hrs ano?

  3. Wow, I have been reading your blog and I have enjoyed it. My wife is filipino, but we now live in the states as we hope to move there in 4-5 years. I would have sent an email, but did not see one. I just started back running about a year ago, and love it. I hope to run the Milo Marathon one day. You can view my blog at Please visit and tell me what you think. Thanks

  4. @kenley, hey I'm glad you're enjoying reading my blog as much as I enjoy posting them. I saw your blog and it looked great especially with the black background. It gives that classic look. Good for u your wife runs with u. This isn't the same as my wife who prefers running in the evenings and on our treadmill. Pero that's still ok as long as we both rack in our mileages.

    Keep on running and blogging!