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Pinay runner in UAE defies limits, races on continents

As Nelson Mandela once said, “Sport has the power to change the world. It has the power to inspire. It has the power to unite people in a way that little else does. It speaks to youth in a language they understand. Sport can create hope where once there was only despair.”

Indeed, sports has the power to realize gender equality and women empowerment, as it teaches females the values of teamwork, self-reliance and resilience.

UAE-based expat and runner Anne Uvero said that being actively engaged in sports allowed her to build her strength and confidence—it has become her vehicle to advance her well-being.

“It’s a test of endurance and strength. For running, talagang physically and mentally challenging ang sport na ito,” she said. “Finishing a marathon makes me more confident and stronger and powerful. Through this sport, it helps me encourage people or other women to be active as well.”

Uvero has successfully completed several marathons across four continents—including Asia, Europe, Middle East, and the Americas.

When Uvero realized that she’s fervent about running, she showed the world the kind of fire she had. She made sure to join every marathon she could take part in, going as far as running on various continents just to fulfill her passion for this sport.

Now, she’s one of the most respected runners in the Filipino community here in the UAE.

“I feel that deep sense of self-fulfilment as I was able to accomplish and improve my race times. It helps me defy my limits, it allows me to stay focused, disciplined, and motivated,” she added, noting that she was also able to inspire her loved ones to start a healthy lifestyle through running.

Uvero has already run at various marathons such as the Standard Chartered Dubai Marathon, the Kazbegi Marathon in Georgia, the Athens Marathon in Greece, the Istanbul Marathon in Turkey, the BMW Berlin Marathon in Germany, and the Chicago Marathon in USA—the last one of which she said was the most challenging yet the most memorable for her.

“Ang pagiging active sa running ay nakatulong sa akin na ma-conquer ko ang fears ko. Akala ko noon, hindi ko kaya tumakbo ng marathon pero ang kailangan ay buo ang loob na makakaya mo at mag-focus ka sa mga training. This sport allows me to stay focused, disciplined, and motivated,” she said.

While Uvero already boasts major marathons all over the world under her belt, she isn’t planning to stop anytime soon. In fact, she has already signed up for another marathon race this April in Madrid, Spain. “My dream is to complete all six world marathon majors. I already did Berlin and Chicago so my eyes are focused on New York, London, Tokyo and Boston,” she said.

“Ang mensahe ko sa mga kababaihan, mamili tayo ng sport na ma-eenjoy natin. Join a fitness group or find a fitness partner that will encourage and motivate you during your fitness journey,” Uvero stressed. “Enjoy the process, mahirap pero fulfilling. Change starts in you.”

Jamille Domingo-Marasigan

Jamille Domingo-Marasigan gathers stories on a wide array of topics, particularly on the Philippines, UAE, Saudi, and Bahrain—which are published on The Filipino Times Newspaper, The Filipino Times Website, and The Filipino Times Newsletter. She also presents the news on cam in the pre-recorded daily broadcast of The Filipino Times Newsbreak—a run-through of the most important events of the day, reaching 5,000 to 20,000 views—to deliver stories to audiences inclined to audio-visual content online. For recommendations and story pitches, you can reach her at [email protected]

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