The male champ was delighted with the outcome of his performance despite a setback during the race. “I am glad I was the first to cross the finish line even though I knew I was losing speed towards the finish,” Balinas said. “The cramps slowed me down in the last 5K of the race but it’s a good thing I was able to cope up with the pain - a skill that I owe to my training,” he said. After placing seventh from last year’s elimination race, the University of St. La Salle Bacolod alumni steeled himself to reach for the top rank. “I literally pushed myself to undergo rigorous training in the last three weeks,” he said. “With this victory, it only shows that hard work does pay off.”
42-year-old Blanco proved she was worthy to be in the circle of the country’s elite runners after finishing first in the 21K female race. “It was an unexpected win,” she said. “There were a lot of elite runners in the pack and it never occurred to me that I would be able to outpace them.” Blanco, who works a 9-to-5 job in a distribution company, revealed that she was a graduate of the MILO APEX Running Clinics. ”I enrolled during the second season of 2014,” she said. “The skills Coach Jim Saret taught us has helped me tremendously, especially during recovery,” she shared. “For example, I wasn’t able to get enough sleep for today’s race, but I was able to apply my running clinic lessons to achieve my biggest feat.”
Balinas and Blanco each took home the top purse of P10,000 in cash and a trophy; and earned their slots to the National MILO Marathon Finals. The finals will be held in Angeles on December 6, where they will meet the nation’s elite runners in a heated grand finale to claim the MILO Marathon King and Queen titles. To provide another level of prestige to the competition and incentive for the runners, this year’s King and Queen will be sent by MILO to the USA on all-expense paid trips, for a chance to run in the prestigious 2016 Boston Marathon.
The National MILO Marathon is not only a breeding ground for local talents but also a program that empowers underserved children nationwide. With the support of the Department of Education and the National MILO Marathon runners, MILO’s Help Gives Shoes advocacy will provide 10,000 underprivileged youth with brand new running shoes this year. MILO is working with DepEd in the selection of deserving public school student beneficiaries.
The race will resume in Bacolod (September 27) before heading to Tagbilaran (October 4), Cebu (October 11), General Santos (October 18), Davao (November 8), Butuan (November 15), and Cagayan De Oro (November 22). The National Finals will be held on December 6 in Angeles, Pampanga.
The 39th National MILO Marathon is made possible by Timex, the Bayview Park Hotel Manila, ASICS and Smart, along with endorsements from the Department of Education, Philippine Sports Commission and the Philippine Olympic Committee.
For more information on MILO Philippines, log on to the official website (http://www.milo.com.ph) or the MILO Philippines Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/milo.ph). Follow MILO on Twitter (@MiloPH) and Instagram (@MiloPhilippines).
The MILO brand is the world’s leading chocolate malt beverage that can be prepared with hot or cold milk or water. MILO also promotes participation in sports through its Summer Sports Clinics, MILO-B.E.S.T. Center Training Program, MILO Marathon, and MILO Little Olympics. The leading beverage brand believes that these contribute to the holistic development of Filipino champions in sports and in life.
About the National MILO Marathon
The National MILO Marathon is an annual marathon event open to amateur and professional runners. From its humble beginnings in 1974 as a single marathon race in Metro Manila attended by 747 participants, the National MILO Marathon has grown to be the biggest, longest, grandest national running event in the country attracting more than hundreds of thousands of runners across the country.
The National MILO Marathon has grown into a globally renowned running event having been certified by the Association of International Marathons (AIMS) and International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF), and hosts foreign marathoners from Kenya, Ethiopia, and other countries across the world. The race is organized by RunRio, Inc.
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