Did 10K (my second so far) and crossed the finish line at 57:40 on the race clock.
This is the hardest I've ever worked on a race, I think. And this is the first run where I've actually thought of walking, or worse, stopping. Several times. Several, several, several times.
C went for his first 21K and did it in 1:59:16. Woohoo! Congratulations!
The 10K for me started out quite calmly. I was around five rows from the front of the pack, patiently waiting for gun start. Bumped into Charlie and was happily yapping about our friends who were in the 21K, when out of nowhere Coach Sarge appeared beside me and said, "sabayan kita".
"Naku wag po!" was my very worried reply. I don't like running alongside a coach because they tend to push you to death. I just wanted a happy run. I didn't want to work so hard, knowing I still have my very tight ITB to deal with.
But Coach was running bandit and had nothing better to do than hound me. So I agreed but told him I'd run at a really relaxed pace.
Then came gun start. Coach sprinted ahead of me and I was hoping I'd lose him. But no! He jogged back to where I was and told me to speed it up. This was how it was going to be the entire race. Coach sprinting ahead, chatting with the faster runners who were already on their way back in the opposite lane, and Coach slowing down to a jog to wait for me.
I'm proud to say that I only succumbed to the pressure from Coach at the first 1K. The rest of the way, I ran at my own, huffing-puffing pace. Because I knew I wasn't going to finish the race if I followed his very fast pace. At the finish, I was relieved for Coach's company and the pressure he exerted but more relieved that I stuck to my own pace despite the pressure.
I was terrified of the flyover. Going up for the first time, and descending on Buendia, I was already imagining the excruciating way back up after the 5K turnabout. To say that the way back on the flyover from Buendia was a killer is a major understatement. It took all of my willpower just to trudge on and not walk. Weird though was how the urge to walk would overcome me after I had reached the top of the incline. Why is that? Anyway.
When we reached the bottom of the flyover, Coach kept pushing me to speed it up as we were already in the last few kilometers. No matter how I wanted to follow, I just had no reserves left. I just kept to a slow and steady pace and kept telling myself to keep at it.
At the last 2K, I felt like walking again but just pushed some more. It's difficult to describe all the emotions and thoughts that went through me at the last stretch. I cannot understand how one can think of quitting when the finish was within view. But that was how I felt. I was so spent and really gasping for air.
It was only at the final 200m when I managed to double my pace, just to make sure I would finish before the clock hit 58. Phew.
That was the most difficult race I've ever joined. I don't know if I'll ever join another 10K involving the flyover. C says he's sure I'll be back. Maybe. For sweet revenge. Haha.
I'm so proud of C. It was tough for him too as his supply of Hammer Gel didn't make it to the race. He had no carbs to boost his energy when he hit the wall at 16K. When he crossed the finish line, his lips were pale. Haha. But still, finishing 21K is no joke. Congrats, C!
Good race, overall. A devil of a race! Haha! The best part for me was the military brass band that played at the bottom of the flyover. And the water tank spraying water on runners who wanted to cool off after the race.
Now I think I deserve a tub of Double Dutch ice cream and a big bag of Kettle Chips New York Cheddar. :)