Friday, September 30, 2011

# 37 across the miles

the drums beat in rapid cadence, a rhythmic pattern that is easy to dance along to. that is the beat of the sinulog, a festival observed in our city every january.   

the week-long celebration has origins religious in nature. it has, however, taken a more festive atmosphere, carnival-like revelry if one may say so. the mardi gras is the festival's crowning point.  it is a visual delight like no other.  perhaps, aural, too. just stand away from those thunderous speakers that make your heart beat like it is going to explode any minute.

the running community looks forward to the sinulog for a different reason. the running craze that has taken off at hypersonic speed in recent years has paved the way for the staging of the cebu marathon at the start of the sinulog week.  on race day, the people take to the streets like it is one big playground. runners and supporters, dancers, drumbeaters and onlookers occupy every inch of space along the length and breadth of the race route.

cebu comes alive in blazing colors at the city's premier road race.  traditionally scheduled on the second sunday of january,  this race is as much a celebration as it is a test of endurance for the participants. 

a race that raises the bar is the best antidote to the running fever. the higher the standards are set, the better it is for the running enthusiasts.  each year, the organizing club, the cebu executive runners club,  pulls out all the stops. theirs is a tough act to follow. as it is with any other race, a shirt comes with the race packet.  a stellar race warrants a top-notch shirt.  with its logo splashed across the front, this year's shirt makes one proud to be part of the city's mother of all races.  a much coveted shirt, it is worthy to be given as a souvenir to special people.

teacher vicki first visited cebu in 2006 on official business.  she has been back three more times.  in 2008, she was thrilled to know that a race was scheduled a few days after her arrival. running was little heard of then and races were few and far between.  her podium finish was one for her memory bank.  unfortunately, there were no races when she came to visit in 2009.  she has heard of the cebu marathon and has been enticed to experience it for herself.   she has yet to.   

across the miles, in far-away kansas city, KS, the highlight of the inaugural cerner15k is a finish inside a newly-built stadium that carries the livestrong vision.

 the race pictures are out. you see teacher vicki wearing a familiar shirt. you get a glimpse but the logo is partly covered by a very mascular arm.

 that is my shirt! that is my city! that is my race! your heart swells with pride.  

 and then you get a clear shot as teacher vicki eyes the finish line.  quite a distance that shirt  has traveled! 

teacher vicki sprints to a top ten finish in her age group.  way to go, t. vicki!!  a few months short of her 50th birthday, she said if she was 50 at the time of the race, she would have topped her age group.  no, thank you, ma'am, i would choose to be top ten in the 45+ anytime than top the 50+ age group.  am in no hurry to get there.

the 2012 edition of the much-anticipated race will be officially launched in a few days.  a different tagline banners the event but the fire is there. 

doubtlessly, the new logo will look good on a shirt as its predecessors have. perhaps the shirt will cross the finish line on foreign shores again. that runner will feel the beat, get on its feet and leap across the miles.  isn't that awesome?


  1. What is awesome is how running has become such a way of life for so many there and especially-you-my greatest supporter. We have shared many things over the years and to share our race experiences brings me much joy. I swelled with pride wearing my shirt from across the miles-wanted everyone to see. Next time I must wait to turn my watch off :) then for sure the logo is displayed properly! I thank you for so many things, but you know and we have said it many a times-"no thanks needed" :) This truly is a special bond that we share ATM!

  2. I like the muscly arm part :P
    Nice one Cher Vicki!!!!!!