La Union Ku Ikaika: My 2nd Half Marathon

Last Friday was my husband’s 45th birthday.  To celebrate, the whole family plus my sister and brother-in-law drove up to La Union, about 174 kilometers north of Manila.  The plan: my sister and I to run a half mary, my husband and my son to run 5K on Saturday morning,  and then relax on the beach the rest of the weekend.

We arrived there late in afternoon just in time to catch the sunset on the beach.

The next day, the race started before sunrise.  The course: road and beach.

La Union sunrise

It was my first time in La Union and I was happy for the opportunity to run there.  I enjoyed the view of the river, the rice fields and the mountains.  The air was fresh and clean.

The river at sunrise: so peaceful.


Quick stop on Cabaroan Bridge for a photo
Refreshing view
My sister running 21K
The last leg of the run was on the beach.  It was only 2 kilometers but felt like 10.  It was tough! I was hurting.  I struggled and I felt like my chest was about to explode.  I was practically reduced to just walking because the sand was so soft.  Then I remembered the name of the marathon: Ku Ikaika. It’s a Hawaiian phrase which means Stand Strong. I wanted so badly to be finished…I kept on going.  I motivated myself, “Only a kilometer left, I can finish this.  I am strong, I am strong!”
Almost there.
Finally, I crossed the finish line!   And I finished with a smile on my face.  I didn’t set a new PR but I finished my second half marathon.  I conquered the distance.  I conquered La Union.  I endured.  I am strong.  I am strong! 🙂
“I Stood Strong”
After running on Saturday, we spent the rest of the weekend relaxing on the beach.

Kayak time!
We had a great time! 🙂

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