Sunday, November 13

Run United 3 - A Race That Test My Being A Woman

My second 32K. I have done this last year, though at this time it will be on a different route, which excites me though I have done portions of the entire route on several different races before. It's a good weather, no sign of rain at all. The moon is still up while the 32K runners assemble at the starting line. I am early for the gun start so I just take my leisure time preparing myself near the assembly area. An hour later, I meet friends also joining the same distance that I will run. I visit to the rest room twice before the race starts.

It's the fifth day of my monthly period, something that I am confident it wont be so much of a bother doing a long distance race like this. I just wear a panty liner.

The gun starts at exactly 4:30AM. I am happy with my pace. I feel like it improves from my two previous races. It did not rain, I am not wet, and I make sure I will not be wet from the water on the water stations. There are many hydration stations along the way though there is only one station the gives banana. I get two which serves as my food for the entire race.

I am doing pretty ok, I love the uphill slope of the two overpass on the intersections of Buendia and EDSA. It gives me the edge to do a run on both going up and going down. My pace on the first 22K is pretty ok,  less than   2 hours and 30 minutes, I only have 10K left to finish. I did not feel any pain in my legs, I maintain a pace which is just a constant one not even dragging my foot to make one step forward. At times I even push a little faster.

But all of this changes the distance after 22K. With the effort that I am exerting and with the heat of the sun that started to rise higher at our back, my clothes are starting to get wet from my sweat. Without me realizing, my monthly period is still going on, it was when a lady runner nicely told me, 'ms. you're bleeding.' Oh shoot, I did not notice this early on, when it was still dark and the sun is still not up. I was just enjoying my run that I did not notice it anymore. She give me her last supply of tissue.

I pulled out from the road and go to the side on the sea wall. Good thing I have my buff, it serves as my towel, wiping the blood the drips on my legs. This is not good at all. But I have to get back to my composure and think. My shorts is already wet, with this condition will I stop from the race, I thought.  But I have gone so far already, I wanted to finish it. My change clothes is also at the  finish line, which means I need to be there as well.  I decided to go to the nearest available rest room. Unfortunately that is still after the US Embassy. It's still more than 500 meters from where I am. I started to do a slow pace run anyway. Upon reaching the one that I thought there is a toilet, it's closed. I have to go to the side of Luneta. But before doing that I have to look for a sanitary napkin. Good thing one kioshk sells one, then I proceed to the rest room and change. I  just hope this will work. 

I go back to the road, finish my u-turn at Luneta Park, but the position of the sanitary napkin has moved. So I need to go back to the only rest room available and fix it. After that, I went back to the road but now on a super slow pace. I need not to sweat too much so that my running shorts wont be wet and the stain won't drip on my legs. It's getting late and the sun is already up. As much as I wanted to do a faster pace, I just really cannot. 

With being so conscious that my legs will have stain of blood, I just take it slowly. My goal of doing a faster time now is all in vain, all I focus is just to cross the finish line despite my condition. Which I did, my time is just not the one that I expected it to be, 4 hours, 17 minutes and 9 seconds. I can say I survived. This is my first time to experience such condition on a race.

Lessons learned....always bring the following when running the next time with monthly period. In my case, I should have a different running attire.
1. Money
2. Sanitary Napkin
3. Wet Ones
4. Pins
5. and Lots of Prayers (that it will not rain, that you will not be wet, etc?

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