The Pain And Glory Of Botak100 Solo (Part2)

29 06 2009

“I am tired as a dog, but I will sleep as a god.” -Dr. Jose Rizal

Going into this race, I have only one thing in mind: to finish it just in time. As a participants of BDM102 and TNF100, I knew how difficult it was to finish an Ultramarathon.

Here’s my story…

Riding a Cher’s bus, I left San Pedro Laguna at 7pm last Saturday, June 27, 2009. Although the race will start at 1am, I traveled early anticipating a colossal traffic flow due to the extension of MRT here in the south. As I attended the Botak CLP a night before the race, it took me 4 hours to reach UP Diliman and so I decided to be at the venue early. In any races, the rule of thumb is, better early than late.

As the bus approached the Susana Heights exit, Marissa, my maid, called me up stating that Romy, the one who wrote his ordeal at this blog (TNF: Terribly Neurotic Fallacy Part 2) wanted to talk to me. We conversed and I’m so glad because Romy volunteered to be my pacer and my assistant and he asked me If he could bring my racer bike so that assisting me will not be as difficult as literally running like what I’ll be doing. I said yes but there was a problem: My racer bike was being padlocked If I’m not using it, and the key was inside my drawer and my maid has no access on it. I told Romy about it and discouraged him but he insisted saying he can pace up with me up to 100 kms. Overjoyed about what I’ve heard on the phone, I allowed him to be my pacer.

As the bus approached the Magallanes area, the time was only 9pm and it’s too early to be at the vicinity of the race because the Organizer will only be accepting baggages starting at 11:30pm so I decided to spend some quality time at Starbucks in Buendia and sipped espresso latte. There, I made my final strategy for this race since Romy will be with me. I will not overuse him. He will be my pacer only from 50kms up to 100 kms, so that his fresh legs can always pace up with me. After spending an hour in Starbucks, I took a bus going to Philcoa and from there I rode a taxi to AS Parking Lot in U.P Diliman where this gigantic event will happen some couple of hours later.

I arrived there at 11:30pm, with only a handful of runners present. As time passed by, I saw some familiar ultra-runners and chatted with them. It’s nice feeling to be with them once again, it’s weird that while we will be competing with each other, it’s like we are team mates and not opponents. This is the real essence of Ultra-running, that running (or walking ) side by side in conquering a 100 kms distance-there is already a fraternal bonding among each of us.

At 12 midnight, Romy arrived. Finally, God sent me an angel! And I discussed to him my plan, I gave him the course map and in few minutes, the race will start.

I met Atty. Jon Lacanlale and he introduced me to his staff if ever I needed help. That was so touching.

After a short program, the race started and in my watch it’s 12:58 am.

0-50 kms

The first 50 kms was a piece of cake for me for I finished it in 6 hours and 5 minutes. (In the BDM102, I finished the first 50 kms in 7 hours and 3 minutes and in the TNF100, my first 50 kms was 13 hours and 5 minutes.) So, this was a good start and great improvement on my part. I conquered so many unfamiliar places here through running: from UP Diliman-hilly course inside UP-Commonwealth-Tandang Sora- Ever Gotesco- Sandiganbayan- Fairview Market-Regalado Avenue-SM Fairview as turn around point all the way to QC Circle going back to the starting line-that’s the halfpoint of this 100 kms race.

At km 25, I used M’c Donalds toilet. Eventhough I took Immodium 1.5 hours before the race, I was not spared from that predicament. That ‘pooed’ time took 15 minutes and some customers of that fast food chain were amazed seeing me in my complete running attire, with sweaty body entered the store’s premise at a very unholy hour at 3:30am.

Later, I returned the favor to M’c Donald’s other branch, for I bought M’c Chicken with rice at km 44 and I ate that while walking. In Ultramarathon, time is always so precious to waste it away, for the qualifying time of 18 hours must be attained. Sacrifice first, leisure later! So I ate while walking because seating for not so fast runner like me will be a deviation.

When I reached the Starting/Finish Line, there I saw Romy. And we’re heading for the last 50 kms which was the real battleground. Maybe, If things will go my way, I could finish this race in 15 hours. I was able to finish my first 50k in 6 hours, so finishing the last 50k in 9 hours was only realistic and in my capacity, I knew I can do it. After changing my clothes and shoes (from New Balance to Adidas), We’re in for the last 50kms of this race.

Until bad things happened!

51-60 kms

With Romy now at my side, I felt stronger and confident. I have a comrade, an assistant who can boost my morale and uplift my sagging spirit. There we traveled some parts of Katipunan and Balara all the way to Loyola Grand Villas.

But there was some problem.

At km 59, my Adidas Supernova 6 was too tight for my feet already. I thought that will be only for a moment, but I was wrong. This Adidas shoes was not new to running. In fact, I used this in some of the races. How come this thing happened?

61-70 kms

As Romy and I reached the Tumana Bridge, I refilled my hydration belt with water coming from the aid station.

At km 62, However, in some parts of Marikina, Romy asked my permission If he could eat first his lunch and he will just wait for me in the next Aid station. Thinking we will be traversing the same route, I allowed him and continued my pace, not realizing that the route will be diverted to JP Rizal to Bayanbayan Ave. all the way to Ordonez. Now, I don’t know how Romy will find me. To make things worst, my back pack was with him, containing powergels and bars and all of my supplies, including my cash.

71-80 kms

Going back to Tumana Bridge, my feet ached as I have never experienced it before. I wanted to remove my shoes and run barefooted just to ease the pain but seeing sharp objects and unpolished stones hampered my decision.

At this point, I’m hungry but my back pack was with Romy. The sun was also so unforgiving at this time, and its scorching heat tormented my already wasted body.

At Km 72, as I drank the last part of water from the Aid Station in Tumana Bridge, I noticed that the water was contaminated with many dark particles. I just poured it on my head instead of drinking it but since I already took so many of it at km 60 onward, the damaged has been done, for now-there’s this major revolution inside my stomach.

At km 73, I ‘peed’ and my urine was so yellowish in color signifying I’m dehydrated. Worried about my condition, I knocked at a door of a nearby house and I asked If I could drink some water. The woman in her 30’s gave me an ice cold water in 1.5 liter coke bottle, I refilled my hydration belt first and took the remaining, consumed a glass of it and poured the remaining part on my head. And I bowed my head privately, saying a prayer for this woman. “Lord, whatever blessings you will give to me, please, give the half of it to this woman…” I thanked her so many times and I continued my path.

At km 74, There was this familiar guy wearing a Pinoy Ultrarunner singlet (he was ahead of me) who was clapping his hands as we met at certain point in the Riverbanks, yelling, “Go, go, go runnerforchrist!.” (Although I was not wearing anymore my singlet ‘runnerforchrist’ at that time) To you bro, whoever you are, that applause was so instrumental for me to move on. God bless you.

At km 75, nearly covering the 24 kms Marikina Riverbanks route, I saw Romy yelling at me but he’s at the other side of the Riverbanks and we’re separated some kms apart. At last, my supplies! I made a gesture for him to just wait for me.

At km 76, an Ultra-runner Jun Jaramillas gave me a bottle of gatorade and at km 77, an unknown runner wearing adidas kotr singlet offered me a sliced apple. God bless both ofyou!

At km 78, I was with Romy and the first thing that I ate was my powergel. For 16 kms, … I haven’t eaten anything. I can’t blame Romy though. Also at this point, it rained heavily in the Riverbanks

At km 80, we reached Aid Station of but I can’t run any longer. The adidas shoes did much damaged to me than anything else. I was so thankful for the staff of Jinoe’s group for gatorade, banana etc. There I also met Rico V. (Sheerwill), Quennie and many others. At the turn around point, I replaced my socks only to find out that my spare socks were also wet due to rain.

I already reached 80 kms. The remaining 20 kms will be chaos and painful.

81-90 kms

As we left SM Marikina, the last 6 kms of the Riverbanks was a struggle for me…

km 82- I needed to poo again but the place were crowded. I entered one public toilet but there was no bowl inside it. I just prayed that I will not be humiliated just in case…I can still control it, but how long?

km 83-I’m dizzy and wanted to vomit and I instructed Romy for us to sit down.

km 85-I tried to run but my feet was too painful and doing this will only aggravate my ‘stomach discomfort’.

km 89- I’m walking as though I have no more strength on my legs. At times, I was holding on to Romy’s shoulder.

91-100 kms

km 95-At the Loyola Grand Villas, I felt again the strong urge to ‘poo’ but this place has no place for emergency like that. No tall trees, no grassy areas. This place is like Ayala-Alabang Village in Muntinlupa where houses are all mansions. I continued to recite by heart Psalms 23.

km 96 -Unable to walk anymore, I bought a pair of slippers in a nearby store. As I removed my socks, I have so many blisters, parts of my legs were swollen and there’s a deep cut on my toes. I tried to run again, but that wound hindered me.

km 98-A guy (I’m sorry bro, I forgot your name), greeted me and called me ‘runnerforchrist.’ He introduced himself saying he regularly reads this blog but since my mind was in limbo at that time, I can’t recall it anymore. That greetings and applause enabled me to do my last kick.

km 100-As I ran wearing a slippers while I carried my shoes on my shoulder approaching the 100 km mark, the finishline…the announcer proclaimed my arrival. I finally made it in 17 hours and 22 minutes, 25th place over all!

Thank God I made it but the history behind it was too difficult to describe. Therefore, I’m not recommending ‘Ultramarathon’ for those runners who are not yet ready to test their limits.

I stayed there until 7pm and watched the event came to close. Three runners arrived but did not meet the qualifying time of 18 hours.

For me, I’m so blessed to have finished it even with those ‘not so good’ experiences. It was another milestone for me, defying all odds, almost reaching my limit.

To Summarize…

My pain:


And my Glory!



God be Praised!

Next: My Assessment/Feedback for this race.

“I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” -Philippians 3:14




22 responses

29 06 2009

Congratulations Bro. Ronnie for enduring and completing the 100K. You’re an inspiration to many including me. 🙂

God is really good for those who love and trust Him, we may be wounded in the battle but with God on our side it will absolutely heal. I really admire you for offering your every run to the Lord, your life is a living testimony of how our God is faithful to each and everyone. May the Lord always and forever keep you.

See you real soon. 🙂

29 06 2009

Hello sir, that is quite an achievement! With three ultramarathons under your belt, you really are a certified veteran ultramarathoner now. Congratulations!

29 06 2009

Hi Let…thanks for those kind words. See you soon at the races. Regards to your husband.

29 06 2009

Hi Wilson, actually it’s only 2 and a half Ultra..I have my back subject as I DNF in the TNF100 and hopefully, I could bounce back in the next year’s TNF. Thanks for visiting. God bless.

29 06 2009
ndorphin junky

hats off to you sir! you are an inspiration from God…

29 06 2009
Sam The Running Ninja

…and so you really got your revenge this time. Congrats bro!

30 06 2009
Jonas and Shiela Compendio

super congrats again for your second and a half ultramarathon ronnie! Jonas and me were in UP around 7am last sunday. but obviously, we were not able to catch a glimpse of you nor the other ultramarathoners.


30 06 2009

wow ang galing! congrats!!!

30 06 2009

Congrats!! What an awesome achievement–and you proclaim the Lord as you Go! You have nothing to regret or feel badly about—thank the Lord that you can run like the wind!

30 06 2009

congrats, sir ronnie! bike naman! hehe!

30 06 2009
cesar a.k.a. rock and run 12

Congrats bro to all botak 100k finishers

was there with ralph, rico and kuya jun at the finish line 16 hours and 45 minutes

next ulit another good year to run a hundred k

kita kits!

30 06 2009

sir ronnie congrats for finishing the botak paatibayan. hope to see you again in the next ultramarathon

1 07 2009

Hi Ronnie, congratulations for doing well on the Botak100. I had the good fortune of being with the Pacific support team. From where I was, I must say that among the runners I have seen passing the station, you were the most serene looking. It must be the Holy Spirit running with you through those 100kms. If not for your account, I would not even know you had major difficulties on the road.

1 07 2009

Thank you ndorphin junky…God bless you too.

1 07 2009

Revenge is sweet Sam, specially when your enemy is yourself. God bless your 42k this Sunday!

1 07 2009

Jonas and Shiela, I’m only running my 52nd kms at that time but I’m so grateful for your effort. God bless both of you.

1 07 2009

Glory to God bro. Thanks for dropping-by.

1 07 2009

Linda, thank you again for those kind words. I prayed for those places that the Holy Spirit will anoint those routes so that people may accept our Lord Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Savior. Like what happened to Saul when he encountered God in Damascus. God bless.

1 07 2009

Sir Ronald, I do hope to join your group in biking some other time…

1 07 2009

Cesar, nice to be with you again like in BDM and TNF. ultra-running is addictive but we must sacrifice a lot. Nice PR. Congrats!

1 07 2009

Nice to be with you again Vince. Congrats for a run well done!

1 07 2009

Sir Rico, before I reached km 80, it’s almost that I’m going to ‘face the wall.’ Until God sent me angels, and it was your group out there. I’m not expecting to see you and Jinoe’s group and I was relieved for a while. God bless you bro.
Hoping to chat with you some other time.

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