Glimpses from the Milo Manila Marathon 2008

Dante rang the doorbell at around 0400H this morning. Papa and mama insisted on accompanying me to the Milo run this rainy Sunday. They wanted to see what the hoola-baloo is all about :) Dante drove us to Manila at this unholy hour. Almost everyone we saw on the road were wearing “green”. It’s raining hard and if it were just me driving alone – I would’ve let some kids ride with me.

We were in Quirino grandstand at 0500H, and we saw the 42K marathoners start their run. Good thing we got there early – we found decent parking right at the Quirino grandstand. After gulping my still warm green tea with milk, I pinned my race number and off I went to the starting line for the 10K.

The starting point was right in front of the Kalabaw/Carabao in Luneta Park. There was just around 30 runners when I went inside the 10K starting area. I was a little bit cold – it was going to be a rainy run. I was doing some warm-ups and one of the runners caught my eye and she asked; “Is this your first time to run in Milo?” “Yes it is.”, came my reply. “Who are you with?” She asked. And I replied, “It’s just me running. But my folks are waiting in the grandstand. How about you?”

“I’m with my husband, he’s running the 42K and my daughter too, she’s running the 5K.”

Whooaaa… Turns out they’re a family of runners. She said they we’re able to buy their house from their winnings in running. Her name is Norma Navarette.

After our short conversation, she bid goodbye and went near the first row of the starting line. It was 0550H.

Slowly there were more 10K runners going inside the starting area. And I don’t mean to eavesdrop – but, I can’t help but listen to some of the runners talking…

“Pare, bagal lang ako ngayon, sakit ng hita ko. Baka hindi ko matapos.” (Dude, I’ll just take it easy today, my thigh hurts. I might not be able to finish it.)

“Pare, tignan mo yun lalaki oh, mukhang lilipad. Ang gara ng lalagyan ng tubig niya – hi-tech! Ako garapon lang pwede na.” (Dude, look at that guy, he looks like he’s going to fly. Nice water bottles – hi-tech! Me, I just use a big glass jar and I’m good to go.)

“Kapag naiihi ka, umihi ka na lang. Hindi ka naman mahahalata. Basa naman tayo sa ulan.” (If you need to pee, just pee. Nobody will notice anyway. We’ll be wet from the rain.)

I felt a little out of place wearing a running skirt and I didn’t want to wear my iPod at first because of all the comments that I’ve bean hearing. But then it suddenly rained so hard. And everyone started cheering – including me. And I glanced around, and everyone that I looked at – smiled back at me. We’re all runners after all.

After the gunshot at 0600H – we were off – simultaneously running with people in Tarlac, Cebu and Davao. Around 10,000 or more people running at the same time!

I took it easy in the first 3K and tried to squeeze in some sprints after that. I was so careful – I didn’t want to get injured. Some parts of Roxas Boulevard had an inch or so of rain water. More so by foot of the Buendia Flyover. I didn’t mind to get my shoes all wet, but I ran over on the sidewalk when the water was ankle deep.

After the 5K turn-around point. There was a guy who suddenly passed out. One runner, placed a bottle cap of Gatorade in his mouth and another raised his legs and I took off his shoes. He seemed to be having an “attack”. A lot of runners were trying to help. Me and some other runners started to sprint toward the ambulance to get help. They responded immediately. No news yet on the status of the said runner.

I was able to do  a lot of sprints on the last 3K. But, I had to zig-zag when I was nearing the Finish line. A lot of 5K participants were walking horizontally and blocking the way back to Quirino grandstand. Me and some of the 10K runners were shouting; “Tabi kayo! Tabi!” (Get out of the way!) while we whizzed pass them. It was a sprint for me at the Finish line – but as usual there was a queue at the end. I stopped my watch at 59:00. I don’t know what my official time is  -  I don’t think I’ll ever know. But, I’m just glad I finished it injure-free.

I forgot about my iPod and stopped my workout 1 minute or two after I stopped my watch. Logged in the distance at 12.8K!


As I was waiting for my turn to have my number taken. The first 42K finisher came in. He finished 42K in  2++hours! WOW.

When the guy at the end took my number – I didn’t bother to get my free Milo because I needed a bathroom ASAP! I took some quick pictures before sprinting to the John.



With mama, taken by papa.

I was supposed to meet the Happy Feet runners – but being with my folks. I know they’re sleepy from waking up so early. We had breakfast at Aristocrat over at Roxas Boulevard and while waiting for my order. I went out and took some more pictures…




Sky was wide awake when we got to the house. Glad I still have a lot of extra energy to play with him :)

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  • jinoe

    Congrats FitMommy. I am so ashamed not to have joined the race. Tinulog ko na lg. Takot pa ako sa ulan e.

    Just posted a comment on your blog. You just invested on a new jacket and shoes… You’re all set for your next rainy run!

  • sfrunner

    Congratulations fitmommy! Great photos.

    Thanks! We are ALL looking forward in meeting you this November :) Glad you didn’t push yourself too hard – and didn’t complicate your achilles. Rest, Recover, Heal and you’ll be running again in November – with your new friends half-way across the globe :)

  • Philip

    cool running and great with helping the runner in need, it makes us other runners feel safe to know that you are on the road in the same race than us. It was still a good time even though you stopped to help. Keep fit!

    Hello Philip. I think I saw you… Well, I think I noticed your really nice yellow shoes other than you being white :) When I registered for the QC Red Cross run last July 2008 (It was re-sked to August 24, 2008 instead) – I was thinking of enrolling for the Basic CPR and First Aid training on the last week of August… And then that Milo incident happen – I will definitely push through with it. You’ll never know when it will help another person in need. Have a great week and congratulations fas well!

  • bards

    TFM – I was reading your story and realized we saw the same thing after the turn around. Tapos I saw your pic, I was about a few meters behind you. Lakas ng sprint mo to the fnish. The finish line was very chaotic with a lot of 5K and 3K runners walking na lang. Great run, eh!

    Hi Bards! Nakita nga din kita.. But I needed a CR ASAP when we were nearing the Finish line. HIrap nga at the end with the runners walking near the end. NIce run for all of us. Next time hope I’ll get to meet you :)

  • Nora del Rosario

    Hats off ako sa yo, G.! You’re a hero (or should I say heroine) for us runners. I looked for you yesterday but failed. Maybe next time, when we are both wearing our Happy Feet Uniform… Congratulations!

    Congratulations too! I was trying to look for you and other familiar faces (from the blogosphere) – pero ang dami lang tao kahapon! Despite the rain – the mood was so festive. Next time, definitely!

  • DM

    Congrats, Fit Mommy!

    I was also there but did not even time myself. Like you, I’m glad I finished injury free.

    Is there a website where we can check our official time?

    Congratulations to you too! :) When I find the out if there’s a website – I’ll post it here ASAP. Haven’t found it on the internet yet :(

  • DATC

    Congrats and nice recap Fit Mommy!

    Happy Feet ka din pala. I’m subscribed to the egroups but I’ve never been able to run with the group, except for one time when I ran with Mon Domingo during a race.

    See you at the races!

    Bagong member lang po :) Haven’t met anyone in person yet – hopefully this Thursday in UP?

  • prometheuscometh

    Congratulations on a good race and my hat’s off to you for stopping to help a fallen runner! Outside we are all strangers but in running we are bound together and lose our differences. Hope to meet you in future races!

    Thanks! Hope to meet you too :) So true about strangers being friends when we’re all running on the road. Hope to meet you too!

  • lonerunner

    U r also frm HF? Welcome to the grp!

    Nice of u to help another runner!

    Hello Sir! Bago lang po sa HF and thanks for the warm welcome. If we all have the skill to help a fellow runner – we would al do the same thing – HELP.

  • ibanrunner

    it must be a memoriable run for u…. I didn’t know that your husband was in the 42K event. Great run for you,,,, Congratulations… have a nice week ahead!.

    Hi Ibanrunner! It was so memorable for me. The rain, the people – everything was perfect!.. And by the way, my husband didn’t run the 42K – it was the husband of a fellow 10Ker that I was able to talk to… Hope to meet you in one of the races (kahit hindi tayo same distance).

  • the_rainman

    great run g! until the next event or the next boxing round :)

    Thanks! Pahinga muna sa boxing 5 years na ako nagta-train for boxing… Running naman :)

  • Gene Ordanza

    Hey fitmommy, I thought I saw you at the starting line but wasn’t sure if was you. Did you have a red Adidas running shoes with you? And I think you had your ipod on, baka magulat ka pag meron nag-hello :-) I must have passed that guy who fainted, didn’t notice anyone who in any trouble.

    Hi Gene! I HAD RED ADIDAS ON! And yes, I had my iPod on – was looking around to find other runner-bloggers – pero nahihiya din ako mag-tanong. Sana binatukan mo ako! Heheheh… Hope to meet you at the Men’s Health Miracle Run :D

  • Nora del Rosario

    As of today, the latest results they have are from the MILO Race in Roxas City last July 13,2008. I guess the Manila Results will be out in 1-2 weeks. You may check the results at:

    Thanks Miss NORA! :D I’ll continually check if our results get posted…

  • kingofpots

    the fit mommy, congratulations for finishing the Milo 10K run without any injury and for helping another runner on the road. just remember, “don’t run too much too soon”. i suggest you should start your “1,000K Club”. good luck & happy running!

    Hello BR :D I promise I will not run too much too soon. If I do – I might not be able to run at all because of self-abuse. I’ll start that 1,000K club too! Thanks!

  • Jason

    not-so-long-time reader, first time writing. :) i would just like to thank you (and your blog), because of it i was able to register in time (before the ladies in annapolis upped and left).

    and… great job finishing the 10k run in under an hour. congratulations! :)

    Hello Jason! I’m glad this blog was able to help you out. I’ll update my list of races this week for everyone and my experience in every registration I go to…

  • http://None Robbo (UK)

    Well Done My first visit to your site due to this race:

    My experience – I’m from UK with Philippine wife who is currently in UK recovering from Op and looking after 2 of our kids – I flew in from UK and landed midnight night before race with my eldest daughter who is starting school in Phil at age 9 with little tagalog but thats another story.
    Anyway spent night in style in The Manila Hotel near start (could see finish from room) I collected my number/shirt from race finish at 5am and was happy with cool wet weather. Did a warm up in the rain and waited for start. There was only one other European that I could see – I run lots of races in the UK but only one or two are as big as this (you guys seem to like your mayor!). I was steady at start getting used to running in rain we dont get like in UK and after 1st mile was passing lots of runners – I was level with and passed leading lady with her guards at mile 4. she got me back in final mile and I finished happy but tired a few yards behind leading lady and level with the only other European in a creditable 44.50 (PB this yr is 42:50). My 1st of hopefully many races in the Phil. Good organisation so Thx to Mr and Mrs Biscocho and team – but could anyone post where the official results might be.

    Robbo (UK)

    Hello Robbo! Thanks for dropping by and I’m glad this blog was able to help you get registered. Just check out my Running Races 2008 Pages – I update it continually when there’s a race coming up :) Happy running! Hope to meet you in one of the races!