Walk by Donna Cruz-Larrazabal (The Freeman, August 27, 2006)

I did it! I joined the 1st University Run last Sunday and crossed the finish line, clocking in at 54:22. Although, I didn’t run… I walked, together with my brother, Kuya Jomar, who flew in from Manila to support the cause, my teacher Mrs. Lovec Edrial (thanks for the water, ma’am!) and Yong’s Sight First Clinics family — Jessica and her husband, Mitch, Marivic and her husband, Doctor Kim, Doctor Elna, Roxanne and Nido. It was really fun and exciting for me because I have never done anything like that in my entire life! Not just the marathon event but also the experience of being in such a crowd, walking with everyone else with all the cars on the road at that! I never thought I could walk the entire 5K, at all! It was a new experience for me and I really had a great time! I kept asking if we have walked and crossed the 1K mark already and Ma’am Lovec would always say, “Wala pa!” and we have been walking for about 20 minutes!! Unbelievable, it felt like forever. Ang layo pala nun! Haha!

One of the things that made the run more meaningful and unforgettable for me was being able to walk with my Kuya, whom I have missed so much! It’s been 3 months since we last saw each other. My Kuya and I are very close. It was a great time for family bonding at the marathon. Finishing the 5K walk in exactly fifty-four minutes and twenty-two seconds, seemed like a long time but pretty good for a beginner, I guess! For me, it is victory enough to be able to finish the marathon because the objective of that fun run, or any race for that matter, is not how fast you get to the finish line but how determined you are and the effort you exert to finish it and I’m sure everybody else that crossed the line felt the same way! πŸ™‚

We would like to thank all the wonderful participants in this 1st University Run. It was beyond the organizer’s expectations! We were expecting about 1,500 registrants, and as it turned out, we had more than 3,000 wonderful people who came to join the fun run! There were lots of runners, young and old from all walks of life! It was truly a successful fundraising event! The marathon started exactly on time at 6:00 AM. The weather was perfect! It didn’t rain, thank God! I just hope that there would be more water stations next year!

Congratulations to the winners listed below:

Men’s Open Division

1st Place – Rogelio Reli of the Philippine Army, with an amazing time of 33:57.815. Obviously, now we realize what kind of training they do in the army camps! πŸ™‚

2nd Place – Mendel Lopez (34:39.829)

3rd Place – Riez Enriquez (34:52.094), whose wife had just given birth that day and said “Hulog ng langit ito!” This new and jubilant dad requested my father-in-law, Dr. Potenciano Larrazabal, Jr., if he could cash in his prize that day because it would help him with the childbirth expenses, which Daddy gladly accommodated.

Women’s Open Division

1st Place – Joeyry Ann Leem (42:36.584), who is only 14 years old! Ah to be young & fast!

2nd Place – Mary Rose Arman (42:59.593)

3rd Place – Christy Sevilleno (43:51.154)


Doctors’ Category

1st Place – Yong S.D. Larrazabal III (51:27.416). Congratulations, Honey! I’m so proud of you! πŸ™‚

2nd Place – Vicente Verallo (54:20.749)

3rd Place – Glenn Cang (56:51.877)

Executive Category

1st Place – Jaimmy Rivera
2nd Place – Jeffrey Cabagnot
3rd Place – Jojo Nunez

CDU/CDUH Employee’s Category

1st Place – Winnie Lanada, Jr.
2nd Place – Randy Maraasin
3rd Place – Aries Abadiez

Again, our heartfelt thanks and congratulations to everyone who joined! We all did a good job in the race! πŸ™‚

We would love to see everyone again next year and hopefully, in the 2nd University Run, I won’t just walk… I will run (I have a year to train and shape up!)! Oh my!!!

Take care and God bless!

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