When in Manila, signing up for one of the many local runs and races is a must for any fitness junkie. The local running community has been growing quite steadily, and runners – from weekend warriors to endurance elites – should seriously consider experiencing the city this way when in Manila.
While running events occur throughout the country, Manila runs stand out for sheer convenience, varied choices, and interesting concepts.
Easily one of the most anticipated runs of 2012 in Manila.
Easy Running – Convenient Registration and Runs
When in Manila, one would notice that this is one packed city. While places to go are not ‘very’ far, the legendary Manila traffic makes one stay in one place more often than not. It is to the credit of many race organizers to station registration areas in places that Manila denizens are very likely to go to – shopping malls. Most of Manila’s sports retailers within malls are partners of race organizers, enabling the busy Manila runner to register for runs while out shopping. Some up-coming runs also offer online registration services for those who wish to register from home.
Everyday to Extreme – Choices for All Runners
Running in Manila has never been more interesting. There are runs every week – sometimes several on one day – and there are races that cater to specific preferences of individual runners. For those looking for a typical urban run, signing up for one of the races in Bonifacio Global City allows one a (clean) urban experience. For the more experienced athlete, a run in McKinley Hills, University of the Philippines – Diliman, or Pasig would provide the sought-after challenge, what with the killer hills of these locations. In addition, most if not all of these runs benefit great causes. I have personally ran in several this year, such as Todo Responde (a run for Typhoon Sendong victims), Go Natural 2012 (a run for children’s health), and Kick the Habit 2 (an anti-smoking run). Charitable causes make good runs great.
One of a Kind – Concepts and Ideas
‘Interesting’ does not quite properly describe some runs when in Manila. The annual Condura Skyway Marathon is a prime example of this. Once a year, runners from all distance categories get to run on the Skyway. It provides a magnificent dawn view of parts of Manila and is truly an experience to remember. There are also weekly running clubs in the Metro, particularly the ARC Thursday Run Club, where 50-80 runners gather at A Runner’s Circle – Manila every Thursday evening to run at the Cultural Center of the Philippines and Baywalk. An up-coming race, the Rogin-E Last Man Running, also offers an unusual 7-hour marathon to see which elite runner can go the furthest within a certain cut-off time. RunRio Run United 2012 also divided the race into three, whereby a finisher receives 1/3 of a medal upon completing each race; the three medals fit together when one completes the series. I thought that this was a nifty idea.
- The RunUnited trilogy medal.
Running is definitely something to experience when in Manila. Whether you are someone whose only experience is a couple of fun runs for school, or a seasoned elite with several marathons scheduled yearly, Manila is a runner’s paradise.
For a list of running events, I highly recommend the running calendar available at takbo.ph. Condura Skyway Marathon 2012 image retrieved from conduramarathon.com; RunRio medal image retrieved from runrio.com.