Participated in my first 5-km Fun Run today. Who would've thought that a thin loop of plastic rope and a painted number on thick parchment paper would be so hard to get, and that once gotten, would give so much satisfaction?
I saw the invitation posted on a banner at the nearby Victoria Plaza the other day: the 3rd Ekiga 21-km Corporate Relay and 5-km Fun Run. I've been wanting to join one of these short runs ever since Dumaguete but I never really had the chance.
So I got up nice and early this morning -- as in 4:30AM early -- and marched over to Victoria Plaza, which is so close to our house, and still managed to get lost. Though I made it to the stands with time to spare, there was a long moment of hesitation. Did I really want to run this race even though I'm horribly terribly out of shape? Maybe next month would be better?
Ultimately I decided to bite the bullet. I signed up. Waited. Stood statue-like during the aerobics warm up because, well, I don't dance.
And then, off we went.
I was in the middle of the pack when we got started. Somewhere along the way, a 12-year old kid and his mom passed me by, then a trio of distinguished-looking gentlemen with streaks of black in their mostly gray hair, and finally, a chubby woman in her fifties whose shirt hugged her curves. I was alternating with this fellow racer for most of the way.
Our route would take us to Bajada, a little past the Davao Regional Hospital and the halfway mark near the Shell gasoline station. I tell you, 2.5 kilometers never seemed so far.
At the halfway mark, they gave us a loop of yellow rope to signify that we'd hit the checkpoint. Then it was back to Victoria. By then, the woman I was taking turns with on the lead was far far away.
I think I must've been the last to finish the race.
But I am proud of two things: I kept pace throughout. And I finished the race.