29
Mar
09

Homecoming: Men’s Health Miracle Run

The Men’s Health Miracle Run would always be a special race for me and many of my friends as this was our first race ever when it started last year, just a couple of months ago.  Now on its second time around it’s only natural for me to return to the race that started my passion for running—like a homecoming.

Men’s Health Miracle Run

Major Changes

Venue.  One of the most significant changes for this race was the venue: UP Diliman.  The previous race was held in Bonifacio Global City and the move to UP was a welcome change.  I was hoping for a “nostalgic” run but since it’s on a different turf, getting fresh memories would suffice.

Shirt.  Miracle Run has been known to have one of the best race shirt design last year and this year was no different—except that this year instead of a shirt the organizers shifted to singlets—a pretty smart move considering the hot temperature at this time of the year, although I missed the shirt which I was able to wear on other occasions as well.

Team Race.  When we first ran the race we were intimidated by 10K so most of us opted to join the team category and run the distance as a relay. Each member would run 5K but the downside was waiting for your partner.  This year there’s still the team category but now it’s a tandem race—no more waiting!  Each one would still run 5K but running in tandem allows the team run as a team.

Race Bib.  No more tarp race bibs!  Finally the race is at par with most races when it comes to race bibs.  I’ve heard that the tarp bibs were one of the causes of delay in releasing race results that have plagued all races initiated by Men’s Health (in fact the race results for Men’s Health Urbanathlon held November last year is still unreleased as of press time).  We’d still find out if this move would improve the speed of generating race results.

Survey Forms.  This race was the first race I had where the organizers were actually interested about how we assess their performance via survey forms.  Finally we had a way of sending our comments directly to them so they may improve their future race.  The only problem I found about their survey form was asking participants to assess something that has yet occurred (e.g. how do we assess the speed of race results when it’s not yet available?).  I hope many future races adopt this idea—an online feedback could be better to reduce paper wastes.

The Route

UP Diliman is always a good place to put a race—it’s cool, clean, and could be challenging depending on the route you take.  The route that Men’s Health chose for this race was excellent!  It’s very interesting and fun, definitely not a walk in the park.

Men’s Health Miracle Run Route

My GF is a KJ

As much as I enjoyed running the interesting route my GF405 can be a bit of a kill-joy.  I crossed the finish line at a new 10K race PR of 48:38 (unofficial, based on the race timer) but when I checked my GF405’s stats I was a bit off.  From the start I was a bit skeptical of the 5K route (10K race was 2 laps of this course) being actually 5 kilometers and unfortunately I was right.  To those who want to savor their 10K race don’t worry I won’t spoil the fun but if you want to see the actual distance as logged by GF405 hover your mouse here.

Because of this “short” issue I don’t really know if I should consider this as a new 10K PR per se.  Had the course actually be at least 10K, I may not be able to get a new PR based on my actual pace.  To be on the safe side I’d just refer to this as a new “10K race” PR.

Needs Improvement

One of the things that Men’s Health’s races badly need to improve is its punctuality.  Every runner that joined the race made an effort to be up early to be on time for the race so it’s a grave disrespect to everyone’s time if you don’t start on time, especially when you claim “race starts promptly at….”  It’s one thing if a runner was late for his race but it’s another if the actual race was late.

Assessment

I really liked the improvements Men’s Health made with this race; I hope this could be a sign of better races to come.  Still this race has a lot of room for improvements and I hope our feedbacks really reach the proper authorities.

  • Race markers: Sufficient (although some distance markers are way off)
  • Water stations: Water adequate, cups not.  10K runners weren’t able to get water on their 2nd lap because the cups ran out.
  • Race Route: Excellent, very good degree of difficulty (no shame if you don’t have a new PR) but some distance off.
  • Punctuality: Poor.  I can’t believe that it was half an hour late!
  • Freebies: Men’s Health Magazine back-issues after filling out the survey forms, product samples from sponsors, and bananas! (I think you know which one I liked most)

    The winners’ medals

Overall Rating: Satisfactory (based on the answers I provided on their survey form)


3 Responses to “Homecoming: Men’s Health Miracle Run”


  1. 2009 March 30 at 12:35 PM

    Thank you for supporting the Men’s Health Miracle Run last Sunday. Because of your support, we were able to donate over Php 240,000 to the Tahanan Walang Hagdanan’s mobility aid project. 🙂

    Also, good feedback on the race. I’ll make sure it reaches the organizers (both Summit Media and the Race Director).

    As for the distance, hmm… can’t really compete with GF since its GPS, but I know the race director measured the course to be exactly 10km since they measured it on Bike and had a PATAFA official to accompany them to ensure its accuracy. But I’ll tell them that GF registered 9.67km 🙂

    I’m happy you enjoyed yourself and the appreciated the other improvements for the race. Definitely, the water station boo boo is something they’ll have to avoid in future events of Men’s Health.

    According to Summit Media people, this is by far, the most attended race event of Men’s Health to date (All-Terrain Race, Urbanathlon, Miracle Run)

    > Congratulations for a well received race and that’s a very good news for all of us that we generated a good sum.

    As for the GF distance it still has some margin of errors being GPS-based that ground-based measurements may be more accurate. If it’s PATAFA certified to be a 10K then I’d assume the distance to be accurate, and of course everyone would be glad to hear that. 🙂

    We definitely enjoyed the race and you can count on me and my friends’ participation on events by Men’s Health. Again, Congratulations! 😀

  2. 2009 March 30 at 8:21 PM

    This happens, it always happens. Anyway congrats on your fantastic run. My question is and mostly many will be is, do I have to have a GF to record a legit PR for my races? I don’t think so. 🙂

    > Yes you’re right, you can’t tell if the race distance is the actual course distance without measuring it yourself (with whatever device you have). Personally I only use it for training stats per km. Who cares if a 10K race is a few meters short? It’s not like we’re all setting a new world record certified by IAAF and ARRS, right? 😀


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