The Happy Run was my first regular race with my new GF—GF405 that is.
The race turnouts for all categories were very good but since it was handled by Coach Rio everything was in order, another well organized race from Runrio. The weather was quite cooperative too, it didn’t rain and it was cooler than the past few days.
The race formally started 5:45AM with the 15K runners. What’s unique about this race, aside from not having a 10K race, was the McKinley Hill route, a first for me. This area in Fort Bonifacio was infamous for its steep climbs but alternately it also boasts some of the nicest view. Indeed this section of the Happy Run made some runners not so happy since it was a real drainer. In fact I recorded my slowest pace of the race upon leaving McKinley Hill: an appalling 7:51/km! This was due to a 20M rise in elevation in just about 370M (GF405 data). After enduring that it’s just another 2K to the finish.
I already did a 16K (10 miles) race before but never a 15K so I could consider this as my 15K debut. Coming into the race I was constantly thinking if I could better my 16K PR (1:27:37) since my 16K race was held on a very flat course, Roxas Blvd., while this one which was 1K shorter would be on challenging terrains of Fort Bonifacio with McKinley Hill part of the equation. Apparently my constant participation in the Nike Run Clinic with some speed training is starting to pay off: my 15K time: 1:18:06 (GF405, unofficial). That’s a new PR for me, an average of 5:14/km, and considering the distance and terrain I’m quite happy with it. And not only did I manage to set a new 15K PR I was also able to break my previous 10K PR: it now stands at 51:14, about 2 minutes off the old PR (it was set on the uphill leaving Heritage Park so it was quite an effort). With some more practice I may be able to break the 50 minute barrier for a 10K soon (one of the goals I’ve set for the year).
This race was also unique because now I’m running with a lot of my new friends from the running community which I oftentimes see along the race. I used to join races knowing only my officemates but now I’m having trouble which group to mingle with (that’s how fast the running fever spreads). Truly this Happy Run made me happy in a lot of ways!
As for the “true” cause of the event, according to Drew Arellano the event generated P400,000.00 all of which goes to Bianca Gonzalez’s Help The Kids Learn Project benefitting the kids of Bagong Tanyag Elementary School Annex in Taguig. And that was really a happy accomplishment to be proud of.
As for the race result it was happily fast, so fast that the official results list was out even before the day ended. I’m so happy I picked this race! Here are the official results (revised: January 29, 2009) courtesy of runrio.com: