Monday, October 4, 2010

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month


And a great way to celebrate is through a 3 kilometer walk and a 5 kilometer run.  Avon called to Step Out! against breast cancer.  Yesterday, thousands heeded to the call and participated the 3k walk and 5k fun run, led by Avon ambassador Iza Calzado, at the SM Mall of Asia

There were a handful of celebrities and well-known personalities, who supports the cause, graced the event such as Love Añover, Arnold Clavio, Susan Enriquez, Lyn Ching, Winnie Monsod, Rainier Castillo, and Aicelle Santos just to name a few

Here's some information about Avon's campaign --
Thousands of women succumb to breast cancer every year, and it remains to be the number one killer of Filipino women. Anyone can be the victim of the disease – mothers, daughters, sisters, friends, even men, regardless of age, social or economic status. This makes breast cancer and the fight against it, our responsibility.

Avon, the foremost corporate advocate of women’s health, launched the multifaceted awareness and fundraising initiative dubbed Kiss Goodbye to Breast Cancer (KGBC) here in the country in 2002 to provide care, treatment and support to medically under-served women.

Through KGBC Walk Events and fundraising products, Avon was able to help establish the Breast Care Center at the Philippine General Hospital (PGH) and successfully fund the treatment of indigents, initiate support groups for sufferers and survivors, and provide much-needed equipment to provincial government hospitals.

For 2010, the company for women calls on everyone to Step Out! Against Breast Cancer. Supporters will not only walk, they will also run to renew their commitment to the cause.

How far should we go to put an end to this deadly disease? As far as it takes.After all, there is no running or walking away from breast cancer, only stepping out as an entire nation to fight it.
Now, here's my thoughts about the 5k fun run

Filipino Time is always On-Time.  First thing I noticed was there were directional signs towards the parking lot.  Now that's convenient.  No need for runners to worry on where to park their cars.  I arrived at the area roughly 15 minutes before 6am.  The mood was a bit festive.  A lot of people in the area and you can feel the nice vibe.  A few more minutes, somebody was running towards the START/FINISH area and people were cheering and clapping.  I thought it was just a show for the media to take some pictures.  Then I realized that the run actually started on time (530am).  Saw the timer and 17 minutes had elapsed. 17 minutes!!!

I was frustrated and had lost hope already.  I was already thinking of going to BHS and just do my regular long run.  Then I saw some (late) runners coming out from the chute.  Then I said, hey I did not travel 16 kilometers without joining the fun.  That started my quick warm-up - a mad dash from the parking lot to the starting line

2 Fast.  2 Furious.  I started out too fast ... big mistake.  All I was thinking was to catch up to the other runners and still cross the finish line with a decent time.  I was doing 4 mins/km on my first kilometer.  My fast beating heart and heavy breathing caught up to me even before I was at the 2km mark.  It forced me to walk in order to lower down my heart beat.  After a minute, I continued to run again and was now on my regular 10k race pace.

Because of my mistake on going out too hard, I found myself walking again at the 2nd and 3rd turnabout.  I wasn't too happy with my performance.  I felt that I wasn't really pushing hard.  To top it off, the sole of my left foot was a bit sore.  Was expecting a sub-25 on that race but I only managed 27 minutes.  Boo!

Race event execution.  No kilometer markers on the road.  On the plus side, they did not change the announced route.  So my mental notes was still usable.  Water was plenty and Pocari too, at least on the first 3.5 kilometers.  There were a total of 3 hydration points if I'm not mistaken and they could've equally distributed them along the route.  Well, I am not the one to complain. I never even bothered to stop nor took a cup when the nice marshalls were handing them out.  But for the rest of the runners it was essential

They also ran out of the polyester loops at the 1st and 2nd turnabout.  I can't help to wonder, how is that possible?  We are not even talking about 10,000 runners here.  Oh well, I guess this will still save them a few Pesos.  The route was nice and straightforward.  The marshals  were very courteous and supportive to the runners.  Lastly, I have to give the organizers TWO THUMBS UP for making sure that the 5k distance was accurate.

Loot bag.  The distribution of loot bags was not well thought at all.  There was only one booth which means one very long line.  Though I have to say that the staff manning it was quite efficient.  I was in the line for about 11 minutes before I got mine.  What's inside?  A copy of MultiSport magazine which featured Team Pangilinan on the cover, 300 ml Pocari Sweat, bottled water, a can of San Marino, Avon brassiere and slippers, and several samplers of contractubex (treatment for scars)

Final verdict.  Was it a waste of time and money?  No.  The money I paid for the registration fee went to a very good cause.  Will I run again next year?  Definitely!  At least in my own little way, I can help increase the awareness about breast cancer and show my support to the cause

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