Early birds flock the area of Mc Donald’s Tiendesitas branch in Ortigas. 90% of the customers from the running community at around 0200 MNL.This was the meeting place of the 30K Tanay LSD set by Sir Pojie and Team Boring from the takbo.ph running community. 16 cars, 80+ runners, 1 location. Past half the hour of 2 we left Tiendesitas and 10+ cars drove with the hazard lights on, took the Antipolo road for about 45 mins to reach the starting point of Sierra Madre Hotel.
0400 the eagles landed, doors from the vehicles started to open and out comes the runners preppin’ and setting up their head lamps, reflectorized gears and blinkers, some doing their warm up exercise some went to pee and then converge right in the middle for the debrief. Opening prayer led by Boy Ambo, then the briefing from the head master Sir Pojie. It was a semi-pitched black environment with no light posts along the long downhill asphalt road of Tanay. 5, 10 and 15K U-Turns were set. The first 15K was 80% downhill and U-turning going back like vice versa, together with my running friends we chose the 10K mark to cover at least 20 kilometers , now the cavalry strides…
With no lights, just head lamps and blinkers from the small number of runners, the agony of the first hour was a grueling pace. My running buddy Ellen, started getting the initial pace which resulted us getting the head start from Daie, Bilz & Prince. With the aid of her Garmin we were able to benchmark a pace of 6-7mins for the first 5 kilometers. We stared fast when its supposed to be an LSD, we hydrated and started wakling after and before we noticed things, our group was on the back pack. But my running buddy a TNF 100 survivor is equipped with a Ferrari engine lungs that made me adjust to a different level, though she has ITBS knee injury, her pace is stable..
We tried getting into the mid pack with Doc T, Boy P and the rest are. Now the sun is greeting us with a few clouds and low humidity as we approach the 10K mark. with Doc T leading the pack goofing around, having a good time and with photos on the side , the complex and rigorous twist and turns of the down hills kept us from getting the right pace, now during intervals we try to walk. We don’t want a busted knee due to the slopes, first things is safety up until we reach the 15th Kilometer U-turn wheer the support vehicle of Sir Dado and Team Boring’s Jairuz to welcome us. We then took a 10 minute break hoping to see our teammates, but they did not show up, it was only Prince who did and told us that Daie and Bilz U-turned at the 11th K mark.
It’s a different run now, with 80% of uphill route going back to the starting line. My longest distance was at 17K with zero slopes and I’m halfway the longest i can master and yet to conquer. I barely have a choice to quit. Quitters are losers, so far nothing is hurting, my knees and shins are ok, no sting whatsoever. Reaching the 19.5 kilometer made it very difficult as rainfall starts to steam down our bodies reaching the 20K mark even elevated the challenge with fog, it was my first time running with zero visibility and a series of strong winds passing the gate of Palo Alto subdivision. Ellen and I started pouncing the downhill stretches and force and raised our legs with the uphills. We saw Bong of the six: 30 group running in barefoot with him wearing Marvin’s knee support, but its not nice to see when the clouds disappeared and the sun started to show up, the asphalt road started to dry out and we began worrying about Bong’s condition, this was the time the heat came in to play, another challenge.
Reaching the last 5K stop as Jairuz tried to motivate our tired battered and physical conditions, we did our best to rehydrate and cast the final blow to finish the Tanay challenge. Ellen’s Garmin died on the 27th kilometer, so we go back to basics, stride the downhill and push the up slopes. But we are starting to wither but the clouds came to the rescue, we exerted our last stride on the final 100 meters up until the gates Sierra Madre Hotel starting point in fashion! were still aint deaf but we hear friends clapping and cheering! It wasnt a race but it feels 10x than that. So damn proud of ourselves!! oh yeah! The whole 15K uphill was a nightmare but a good training!
Thanks to Sir Pojie, Team Boring, Sir Dado (MachineMan), DocT, Jairuz, Ellen and to the rest of the takbo.ph group who participated and made this LSD possible! hats off to you guys! More power and more distance to cover for us! This 30K Tanay LSD gave birth to Team Palibhasa Lalake… ARYA!!