The TNF100 Challenge – Part 1

The long wait is over, TNF100 has arrived…

‘Twas the day before….

The wheels on our car go round and round on that Saturday afternoon as we drive to Clark, Pampanga. Everything has been well planned, our running gears ready; our cooler if fully-packed of hydration drinks, power gels and lots of water; and the bananas already ripe. Our racing spirits in-tuned with the anticipated event.

We arrived at the hotel at 3PM, rested for a while and decided to go to the race area so we could survey the trail. But as soon as we arrive in front of Expo Filipino and parked our car, huge drop of rain started pouring and winds were almost tearing the race area, it was like being in the middle of a storm. We opted to stay inside the car and waited for the rain to be over. And as soon as it was, this is how the race area looked like:

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IMG_0013It looks like a storm hit this place

Hubby and I were concerned with the runners in the 100K category. We thought that with a wind that strong and that heavy downpour they would be worried of a very muddy and slippery terrain, add to the rising water level on the river rising. 😦

After that rain, we still went to the trail area and walk/run (lakbo) some kilometers, we didn’t get to see the way leading to trail so we just run on the river. We were on our way back to the area that night when we saw Glenn Mundo running for the finish line, we stop for a while so that we could cheer for him and chat for a while. He was the one who told us that Coach Rio is thinking of postponing the race due to what happened earlier. Coach Rio did what any responsible organizer would do, analyze the situation and act and I admire him for that. We stayed for a while in the race area and talked to runners who finished their first loop in the 100K. We saw Mikey, Glenn, and Bro. Ronnie (RunnerforChrist), finally I get to meet him. We left the area after a couple of minutes for we have to sleep early for the big event.

‘Twas a very special day….

I ‘am used to preparing everything needed during the night before a run, I don’t want to miss and forget anything that is needed. Woke up around 3:10AM, drank some coffee, eat instant noodles, change from pajama to running attire and off we go to the area. There were lots of runner attendees who also stayed at Holiday Inn since they were giving discounts for the accommodation in collaboration with the TNF100. The shuttle bus going to the site was already in front of the hotel lobby and lots of runners were already on board.

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It was obvious that we were super-dooper excited for the race (along with many runners), we arrived at the area early, something that we don’t usually do. 😀 Some runners were warming up, chatting with friends, the racing atmosphere is so high that you are immediately drawn to it. Gigi the FitMommy was also there, who was doing her 20K trail run and said that she was nervous but knowing her the run was nothing to her. 🙂IMG_0036

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The 20K runners went first and after 10minutes the 10K were off. It was around 1.5K of road before heading to the downhill portion of the Sacobia bridge leading to river. There was a slight traffic at this portion because it was muddy and some runners prefer to go down safely rather than go down fast risking injury. The run was fun, we were made to cross river and run on water, I was running with wet, dirty and muddy shoes. It was a bit irritating running like this for almost 75% of the race, but it was really fun. You can tell that almost all the runners were having a good time and was really happy of joining this race that day. Sure it was a hard course but I’m happy to have done it and will join again next year. Check some pictures I took while I was on the trail.

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I finished the race with an official time of 1:30:58. It was slower than my last TNF but this course is way too hard than that.  My esposo placed 7th overall in the 20K with official time of 1:55:12. I was just wondering why he didn’t won in his age category “A” (18-30 y.o.), instead the runner with Bib#7074 won (age 21) with a time of 2:03:03, is the AGE the first basis when choosing the winner for the age category or the finish time? I think it’s the finish time so why did #7074 won instead of my hubby. I already sent inquiry to runrion.com but haven’t receive any reply yet.

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But still overall the race was well organized, Coach Rio and Vince did a very good job. They are really good with their job, they deserve an applaud. Congratulations to you and your team!

Next post will be photos from the TNF100 race. Keep running everyone and congratulations to all the participants and finishers especially to those who joined the 100K solo/relay race. Finish or DNF, still I salute you. 🙂

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TNF100

To those who are taking the TNF100 challenge this week, here’s an update from Pinoy Ultra Runners site which I think would be very helpful to us in preparation for our trail run this coming Sunday:

10KM

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Based on the map the 10km runners would be running roughly 30-40% of the course on the Sacobia River.  After which runners would climb a steep hill leading to a flat trail.  Most likely the dirt trail would be established since there are several communities nearby.  It might be very muddy or dusty depending on the rain fall.  After this road a gentle downhill will lead runners to a concrete roads going back to the finish line.  Try to sprint here so you can overtake and get the best possible time.  You will have five water stations, based on my estimates it would be spaced from 2km to 3km apart.  You can bring a hydration pack so you can skip the water stations and finish the course at slightly faster time.  If you’re not a fuel guzzler, a hydration belt with water bottle would also suffice.     Elite runners won’t bring anything, since they want to be as light and nimble as possible.   It may be a 10km distance but since it’s a trail it would feel a bit like 15km or even more.

20KM

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Will follow the same route as the 10km but it will extend past the Haduan area where an old bridge is located.  Runners would then climb a dirt road and follow a narrow trail used by the local communities.   Based on the map this trail will be flat but very challenging surrounded by tall cogon grass.  Runners then will reach Gate 4 and exit back to Sacobia river, try to hydrate as much as you can the terrain can sap a lot of fluids and energy.Remember you still have a long way back,  try to stay positive and kick in that second wind.


Bring any type of hydration system (pack, waist, and hand) it may slow you down but
at least you wont run out of fuel.  You might also want to bring energy bars or gels giving you that extra energy to overtake the runner in front of you.  For those who are new to trail running the surroundings will really drain your reserves.  The Sacobia river will sap your energy and the cogon surroundings and blazing sun will definitely sap all of your fluids.  The sand will create lots of glare so you might want to bring a pair of sunglasses.  Remember to pace yourself, let lead runners guide your way.  Try to overtake runners before entering a narrow trail and don’t stop during hill climbs.  My estimate is,  20km trail will be like a 25-30km road.


eIMG-0156Nice!

Visit the Pinoy Ultra Runner site to read more about this. See you all this Sunday.