by Rose Buenconsejo
I saw this statement from coolrunning.com — “No fees, No Awards, No Aid, No Wimps.”
I cannot help but chuckle because this best describes how it is running with runnroo’s Tour de Cebu.
I do not have any prior experience of joining any organized running events when I joined runnroo’s Tour de Cebu. I was a total blank slate who were made to believe by these fives — Joseph, Armie, Paolo, Jean, and Odina — that 25KM is nothing to fear; it’s easy, that any one can do it.
If it were swimming, they were able to convince me that I’m a mermaid; that running a 25KM without any support you can find in organized race events is the normal. So sometimes, I could not understand why people complain about having no proper water stations in the fun runs they joined in.
NO FEES. But bring some money with you because you will either need it for your own hydration aid, or to pay for a multicab/bus when you decide to DNF (did not finish), or both. I experienced both most of the times. =)
Pro-tip: A pocketful of P1 coins will come handy with ATM (Automated Tubig Machine).
NO AWARDS. There are no material awards. But guarantee that you will GAIN because there will be all kinds of pains (as they would say ‘no pain, no gain’). Unless you’re no longer human like the runnroo’s, physical pain is a guarantee. And, if you’re like me, you will also get mental, emotional, and spiritual pains.
NO AID. But yourself. At Stage 7, I fully did not know what is aid. I always thought that in distance running, all I need were a pocketful of pennies for water, and a water bottle to be refilled by the sari-sari stores along the way because that’s how runnroo’s were and are running.
And, Stage 7 proved that NO AID is better than an OC aid. Before the Stage 7 run started, I was very excited because I’d be running with Mark John the husband. It will be nice to have an extra support. But then after a few kilometers, it got annoying.
Mark John is a programmer, an OC one, and he lives like his code — if then that 101010. I have no problems with that as long as he will not include me in his program. Before the run, he probably had pre-programmed in his mind what would happen in each kilometer — when to breathe, sweat, eat, drink, stop, cheer, etc — while I just operate based on what I feel. So what happens was that while I was in the zone for running, he’d forced me to stop since based on his precise mathematical equation programming, it’s time to get hydrated. WTF, he’d just ruined my mood! (Note: I think all is good now. We kind of have this unspoken understanding that he will be a mere water carrier for me — a new program written from scratch.)
NO WIMPS. Actually, wimps are welcome because when you see your mates running even with injured knees, limping from the start to finish, your wimpy side will get shy and leave you behind.
Stage 7 is realizing that the best support crew is myself and my soul. Thankful that with the kind of runnroo is doing, I learn to multitask in distance running — from water carrier, to cheerleading my own self, to pacer, coach, and whatnot. But of course, an extra soul looking after you very much welcome.
After the run, eat, and swim.
More not-so-many pics from phone here >>