OFWs thrive in trail running

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A handful of OFWs took part in the trail run held in Discovery Bay on April 16.

Organized by Action Asia Events, participants were able to choose a short trail (9 km) or a longer trail (12 km).

Runners started to gather at the starting line by 7:30 am before the 8 am official starting time.

Runners could be seen running along the shoreline of the beach followed up by mountain climbing at Lo Fu Tau. No helmet was needed for the course.

The event is part of the Action SPRINT Trail Series. Most of the volunteers at the event are Filipinos.

The first ones to clock in at the finish line arrived less than an hour for the 9-km run.

Meanwhile, the first runners in the 12-km race clocked in between 1 hr 26 and 1 hr 43 minutes.

Alina Ilyn Vasco was an avid hiker before taking an interest in trail running.

She was curious at first when she ran into some trail runners while hiking since they were wearing a bib.

She also was unsure about her potential at the beginning.

By February 2023, she started to run. At first in small races like 50 km, then 100 km where she won.

“Nag start ako nag join ako ng running this February [2003] and then ayon po, naka place po ako, naka champion. And then dati habang nag hi-hike ako, nakikita ko po yun mga nag ra-race,” said Vasco.

“Yung may bib na ganito. Sabi ko ano kaya ang ginagawa nila so nag tatakbohan sila. So sabi ko, baka pwede ako sumali doon. So una ko napag-try po yung 50 km, and then yung 100 km hanggang po sa nagawa ko po yung 100 km. Inano ko po na, baka pwede po magawa pa ng more than,” she said.

Vasco is no stranger to challenges. In July 2021, she joined the 100 peaks in 6 days challenge across Hong Kong.

According to Vasco, this was the most challenging she has had to deal with in her life.

She said it felt like she was hiking Mount Everest twice in the span of six days.

She ran day and night and only rested once. During the route, her close friends hid food and brought a tent to rest.

At the 12-km race on April 16, she came in fourth place and clocked in at 1 hr 42 mins 35 seconds.

Meanwhile, her fellow kababayan Maria Aurora Cabania was thrilled when she won third place in the women’s 9-km race.

She said she only started to race competitively in December 2022.

Vasco was the one who encouraged her to race. At first, she used to volunteer until she decided to take part in the race.

Her first race was in Tai Long and it was a 19-km race.

April 16 was her second race and her first time to win an award.

“Kasi ako, December I was 56 kilos which is why I start running. In the morning I always wake up at 5 am just to go run, which is I’m thankful because my boss like very supportive. And I also do my treadmill at home. Tapos na wo-work ako nag li-liftin din ako. Now, I’m 48 years I’m thankful, healthy ever. Just be active all the time. Health is wealth,” she said.