One of the latest additions to the team at the 2011 Octoberun, Jem first turned heads when he finished 5th in the Western Pangasinan 65 km ultramarathon race.
This former high school basketball varsity point guard was a product of the first TBR Dream Marathon who improved leaps and bounds in a short period of time en route to qualifying (in his first try at that) for the 2011 Milo Marathon Nationals.
Jem has done sub 20 minute 5k races but wants to improve his speed further and one day maybe dive into the world of triathlon as well. He also dreams of being a father by the age of 30. But for now, this history buff continues to train after work and gain admiration from other runners because of his passion and dedication to the sport of running.
When did you start running? Why did you start running?
I started in Milo 2004 with my brothers but more regularly in 2007. I discovered I had speed and endurance while I was still playing basketball.
What is your favorite distance? Why?
21k and 42k. For me 10k is a bit too short because I'd feel that just when I thought I was already warming up, the race would soon be over.
What is your most memorable running moment? Event?
I was in disbelief and joy upon seeing the 41km marker during my first marathon (1st TBR Dream Marathon) and was just so happy when I saw the time at the finish line of the Milo eliminations!
Who are your running idols?
Abebe Bikila and fellow christian Ryan Hall
What was your weight before you started running? What is your weight now?
My weight is just around the 50 to 55 kg zone and I'm not really in this sport to lose weight. In fact I gained some I think.
How many pairs of shoes do you own?
I owned two other shoes (Adidas and Mizuno) but have been using only two now (Asics and Nike) plus a new pair of New Balance
What was your "slowest" race?
It would probably be the 2nd Tagaytay to Nasugbu 50k ultra because I wasn't able to finish in the top 10 and failed to clear the 5 hour mark
What are your usual pre-race activities?
Eat peanut butter and jelly sandwich and take a bath only after the race.
What is your favorite non-TPB singlet?
Mizuno Run 100%
What is your target race? What is your target finish time?
I want to do a sub 3:40 finish at the Milo Finals
Forefoot, midfoot, or heel?
Usually midfoot but for some reason, I sometimes have problems with my right leg and end up landing on my heel
What was your worst injury? How long were you sidelined?
The one and only injury I've had was plantar fasciitis two weeks prior to my first marathon at TBRDM.
How many races have you raced already? What is your total mileage since you started running?
I've probably done about 50 races, although I haven't been able to log in my runs from the very beginning. For 2011, I've run 1,200+ kms.
How did you get into TPB? When did you join TPB?
October 2011 upon the support and encouragement of Natz, Beeps and Ronnel.
What is your message to TPB fans and supporters?
In your own words, what is running to you?
Running is a lifestyle.
If you are to create a running event what will you name it?
A 100km Ultramarathon for my dad's 100th birthday!
If you are to create a team of 5 runners for a 5 x 32 km race, who will your members be (can be anyone, runner or not, living or dead)?
Me, Ryan Hall, Haile Gebrselassie, Dean Karnaze, Anton Krupicka