Last Sunday, for the third time, I tried the Pinoy Fitness Sub-2 21K Challenge held at the SM MOA area. You read it right, this is the third year of this running event and also my third time to try finishing the 21K distance under 2 hours. Did I make it? Read on to find out.
This year’s PF Sub-2 21K Challenge had a two-loop course in the vicinity of SM Mall of Asia, reaching as far as the CCP area. The route this year was a bit different from last year. But both were 2-loop courses. And similar to last year, the 21K route this year is also 99% flat.
So, was it easier race to conquer? Well, for the two other categories, namely sub-230 and sub 3, this would probably be a walk in the park. I mean if you were able to do several 15K LSD runs prior to last Sunday’s race, it would be easier for you to finish the 21K distance in those two times.
But for those who were brave (and perhaps silly enough?) to take on the sub-2 challenge, well this race is probably one of the toughest 21K race that I’ve ever done. Same with the two previous PF 21K challenge.
This year, the organizers introduced pace markers instead of pacers. There were three pace markers for the sub-2, sub 2.5 and sub 3 runners. This means that if you’re running in between two sub-2 pace markers and you were able to remain in between, until the last km, you are well assured of achieving the sub-2 finish. But if you lag behind the tail-end of this markers, you either push yourself some more or kiss your dreams of finishing a sub-2 21K goodbye and try again this year.
And so I did try to stay in-between the designated markers. At least until the 15th KM. But after making it to the first loop somewhere in SM MOA, I started the fatigue creeping into my leg muscles. No matter how hard I tried, I just couldn’t keep up with 5:30 pace of the pace markers.
So, somewhere between the 16th and 17th KM, I kissed my hopes of finishing a sub-2 half marathon goodbye and told myself that I will try again next year.
In short, I was able to reach the finish line with the clock at 2:13 mins. It was a minute faster than last year but 12 minutes slower than the first time I did this challenge in 2014.
So, I guess, Pinoy Fitness will have me as a participant again in the 2017 Sub-2 21K Challenge.
Congratulations to all those who were able to achieve their target time. And for those who did not, well see you again next year!
For race results and race photos, visit htt://myrunti.me and search for Pinoy Fitness 21K Challenge 2016. (1972)