Friday, April 3, 2015

Nike 21K 2015

Sorry for the lack of updates.
I think I'll start with the first race of the year.

As usual we arrived pretty early, there was a bit of a confusion initially because of the last minute location change for the Start line (from the Stadium to somewhere near Petaling St).

Come to think of it, there were several glitches moving towards the race day with the collection of the race pack, lack of updates and whatnot. However, the race day itself went pretty smoothly IMO.
Met several good friends I did not expect to meet, good quality race tee and training tee, did my HM PB as well.

xx

Saturday, November 29, 2014

2015 Race Calendar

Seeing that i'm such a bad planner and all, better note this down before I accidentally on purpose register for two events on the same date.

1st Feb: Nike 21K

1st March: Nuang Ultra

28th March: PEKA 10K Trail

16th Aug: Kuching Marathon FM

Yes, this (points at self Blake Shelton-style) crazy woman is attempting her first ultra-trail marathon before a full marathon.

Sunday, November 9, 2014

The Terry Fox Cause


I first learned about this inspirational 18 year old last year. Every one of us have a pair of legs, and we're told to walk a minimum of 10 000 steps each day.
Terry was diagnosed with bone cancer and had to amputate his right leg as a result of it. What did he do after that? He did an equivalent of a full marathon per day for 143 days to raise awareness and give people with cancer hope that anything is possible when you put your mind to it. I can't begin to imagine the amount of pain he was in and the courage he had in him to even begin his mission.

My cousin, who stayed with us awhile back in July commented one day,"You have that shirt with the dude in front in like, different designs huh?"
I was pretty stoked that she noticed 'cause then I can explain why I've been wearing it. (At that point, I had three different shirts: 2011-2013)
My wardrobe has been expanding exponentially with dry-fits finisher tees and running vests so I've been really selective in actually buying tops.
For this year's Terry Fox Run, I deliberately went out to SJMC on Day 1 of shirt sale to purchase it.
I've no idea who designed the shirt but wow.



The Pacific Gets Closer Every Day.
That statement completely, wholesomely epitomises Terry's determination when he started his journey by dipping his artificial leg into the Atlantic Ocean.


The Bottle contains Atlantic seawater which he aimed to pour into the Pacific Ocean upon reaching.

Even the direction that Terry is facing upfront on the shirt shows that he is running westward Pacific bound.

Last but not the least, if you're wondering what are the writing on the side of the shirt, they're from his journal on the day he started his Marathon of Hope. "Today is the day it all begins..." - April 12th, 1980.

So yeah, the Terry Fox Run is a cause that I'll support year after year because awareness counts and wearing the shirt reminds me of how much of an inspiration anyone can be and that we can all make a difference in our own ways.



Source 1
Source 2
Source 3

Saturday, November 8, 2014

The Runners (ps. Turn on the subs)


This is an odd but interesting documentary. I can't help but wonder what response Malaysian runners would give. Someone should do a local version and send me the link :D

I love the veteran runner from the moment he said "Everybody is born to move." I so agree with what he said after that as well.

Funniest and most unexpected response would be the one given by The Wife.
Most heartbreaking one is The Man Running For Dementia. All the best mate.

The background of some places reminds me fondly of Glasgow. Wish I made more use of the park and club there.

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Viper Challenge 2014 Recap

You could say you're dirty, tired, and in pain or you could be euphoric, awesome and proudly show off your battle scars after crossing the finish line with glory!

This year's Viper Challenge was my first, joining hands with 3 veterans (since they participated last year) to complete Asia's biggest obstacle event.
I thought upon completing Reebok One Challenge, this will be similarly doable. Oh how wrong was I. .
My team agreed wholeheartedly that this year was tougher and more challenging. We did manage to complete it in 5 hours though.

The event was pretty well organised. Emcee in the morning hyped everyone up before flagging us off. We thought booking the earliest slot on the first day would guarantee us fresh mud and clean obstacles but we clearly didn't think it through.. Lol. At 6am, we couldn't see a single thing while running trail. It was more of a slow jog and hoping that we don't step on any snakes or misbegotten holes.

I'm not gonna spoil the surprise for those running next year by talking about every single obstacle. I'm just gonna list my top favourites and not-so favourite.

(BTW, you can expect many many walls. Like .. A lot. Seriously. )

1. The Ramp Of Triumph
First of all, I'm starting with the last obstacle because it'll freak the heck out of you when you see it. It is ironically the first obstacle you will see because it is riiiight at the finish line.
I managed to get over it with the help of a rope and many strong arms.
Saw a guy who just did it by himself.. Pecut all the way up then hoisted himself over the ledge.  Jaw drop with awe.
Things got slippery after a while because of the rain. Fun stuff.
Love the name.

2. Define Gravity aka the Subaru wall.
I think they maybe mean defying gravity?
Anyway this wall is IMPOSSIBLE to climb by yourself. It is a gigantic reclining wall. I was basically pushed all the way up then yanked over the rest of the way. Lol not much work for a girl. Sorry :P
Thank goodness I'm relatively light.

3. The Ring Swing
This is one of the challenges I did not make it through. It requires momentum and upper body strength, and maybe arms like an orangutan.

4. The Mountain Dew wall (forgot its real name)
This was one of the first few challenges (2nd one I think) where two planks are nailed to the wall - one for your fingers to grip and the other for you to toe across. In the middle they  seem to have forgotten the plank for your feet so you'll have to just use your arm to inch bit by bit across with your legs dangling over the crocodile infested waters (ha)  until you can toe the wood again. I was a bit skeptical at first but I made it across woohoo! The cheering helped a lot.

5. Mini Walls
When I saw the sign, I had the urge to add "cornettos" at the bottom. Haha
Note that "walls" was written. Plural. Because they are legion. You'd think that "okay this is the last one.".. Only to find out there's yet another one in front. Grrr.

6. The Rappelling wall.
This is one super challenging task for me. It is about upper body strength and determination. When we reached the obstacle, it was cloudy and starting to drizzle. When I made it to the top, I had to overcome my fear of heights that I didn't know I had to swing my legs across.
The very helpful volunteer shouted up at me, " Don't look down! Just slowly move one leg over.. Look up! See how blue the sky is!"
And I went, "No it's not!!" - in a voice full of despair.
I'm so proud of myself for making it through. Getting the sniffles right now.

Things I learned:
1. Height is an advantage

2. Upper body strength is a must. There's only so much people can do to help you out.

3. You won't know how far you can go until you try. At some of the obstacles, my body was like, "Heck no! Nuh-uh. you ain't makin' me do that sista. Not on yo life!" (Don't know why my body sounds black but that's the way we roll.)
And my mind was all like, "Do it! Doooo eeeeeet naooo!"
And when I did it, mind and body did a high five.

4. Pre-viper training helps

5. Make sure you wear comfortable shoes but not your favourite pair.

6. Sand has no taste, they're just crunchy.

7. Work together as a team, you'll enjoy it so much more.

8. Laughing at others is okay, as long as they get to laugh at you too.

9. Cheering for fellow participants helps. Trust me.

10. You'll get hungry halfway through.

11. It's not about finishing the fastest. It's about helping one another through and cheering them on if you can't.

Good luck to those attempting the 2015 Viper Challenge!
Thanks to my team of the Four Fei Geis especially the one and only guy of the team who boosted us all across many of the obstacles. Couldn't have done it without every one of you.
A big hurrah to all volunteers as well. You guys rock!

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Puma Night Run Malaysia Recap

First of all, kudos to the organisers for this pretty well organised inaugural run!

The Location
This is actually my first time at Setia City Mall. Actually it's my first time in this area ..so I was jakunly going phwoaaarrr when the mall and a large Puma balloon floated into sight. There's a wide open space in front of the mall/convention centre where puma set up the event. The family mall was a great place to while away some time before the run. Best of all, no need to queue for the porta-toilets! Bwahahaha

The Race Pack
Honestly, this is arguably one of the best race pack of the year. Not only did it come with the requisite top and bib, Puma was generous enough to throw in a race pouch (gels & keys storage hurrah!), pouch with a towel in it, and a shoe voucher all in a drawstring bag.
Sorry puma, your shoes don't fit me:(
Anybody wants my 20% voucher just msg me yo.

Pre-Run Shtuff
The Emcee of the event was Phat Fabes. It's been awhile since I've heard or seen him, thanks for entertaining us before the run! There was also a lineup of DJs, bands, a beatboxer and some pretty cool performance. I only heard Koji while walking to the starting line.
Ooh there was this station where a guy was making helium bubble cougars and letting them float in the sky. If you look up at the sky after the run, you'll be able to see pumas frolicking in the night air.

The Run
7.30pm was the flag off and it started on time (we runners are a punctual bunch. A minute late and youll get a riot on your hands). One great thing about this run is they have their very own pacers from the run club (this is the impression I got, correct me if I'm wrong).
I was following the 60mins pacers (initially) who were chatting the entire way. Seriously it's like they're not out of breath at all. At least they took my mind off the fatigue. They were also really good in keeping the runners in line. We don't always follow the Cone Rule so every few minutes you will hear "Keep left, keep left! Car behind!!"
Sadly for those way behind the 70 minute pacers, there were no sheepdogs to guide them so poor cars were creeping behind the runners who were all over the road. Sorry cars!
The 60 minute pacers were also real polite in thanking all the volunteers as they pass them. I was too out of breath to even grunt but I did manage what I hoped was a tiny nod occasionally.
I kinda lost them towards the last few km because I'm pretty sure they were faster than 60 mins! Harumpphh. It's okay, give chance to improve la k..go slower.
Roads were wide enough to accommodate everyone and there were appropriately placed electronic mats for our timed chips.
I'm thinking of getting my own handheld bottle because although there was a water station every 3 km or so, I still felt quite dehydrated at certain points of the run. The feeling is even worse in my HMs. Shall train with a normal bottle in my hand first to see if I can get used to it.

Things I don't like
Now the following are all all my personal viewpoints only

1. Barring future MUST-JOIN runs, this is most likely my last night event. I find that running during the ones i joined so far take more toll on my body compared to the early morning runs- this includes Sundown Singapore, Energizer Night Race, and BSN PNM. I very nearly pengsaned after the Energizer - combination of hypoglycaemia, electrolyte imbalance and lactic acidosis kot. Also, the entire day prior to the run is completely wasted because of pre-race jitters and nervous anticipation for the night. Lastly, when your body feels like shutting down, you need to summon amazing willpower and determination to crawl into the shower before you can collapse onto the bed.

2. Straight roads are really not fun. But since this is my first time running in Setia Alam, there's still some new sights to take in. A friend actually spotted a baby snake slither pass during the run. omgee such a shock. thank goodness she didn't step on it. 

3. At the finish line, we were given our medal and a banana. 
My issue is, the banana was individually wrapped in plastic..making my tree-hugging sensibilities protest loudly. Okay sure maybe it is to preserve its freshness or whatever but all other runs usually just hands them out without the offending and un-environmentally friendly wrap.
Another sad thing was, one guy in front of me managed to get two bananas from this volunteer. When I put my hand out for a second banana with a grin at the same volunteer, all he did was stare at me. 
Suffice to say I quickly withdrew my empty hand. :(
ps. the one banana i did get? i finished before even reaching the Bag Drop. 
told myself maybe they only have enough bananas for 3k people and some behind me might not get any if i had taken two. but still, ouch.

4. There was a little lack of communication/information before the run. Usually organisers will post up the map, medal design, extra pertinent information building up to the race day. In this case, not much info were given apart from the pdf on the reg website and an extra post to inform re. change of race pack collection venue.
Not really a big thing but it would still be nice to get a little hype from the organiser.
I did see pacer posts from the RC page. guess that's something.

Update: Results are out! 

Up and coming!
Viper Challenge
- I dare anyone to finish Viper with unchipped manicure!


Thursday, October 23, 2014

Mamam

Does food taste better when you have time to savour it?
I don't know if it is the amazing skills of this particular restaurant's chef or it's that I finally have the time to taste every bite unencumbered by my family's fast and furious food gobbling. Ahem ahem.  I swear my dad just telans everything without chewing. It's pretty scary.
The restaurant people were probably also thinking I'm a weird kid seeing as every other red-cloth-covered table is occupied by boisterous families while I'm taking up a six-seater all by my awe-some.
1. I was so glad to spot an empty plate with spoon and fork on the table when I arrived (hurrah no chopsticks!)
2. The food took quite awhile coz the restaurant was busy. Signal was bleh on my phone so I had to pretend to be highly amused by whatever I was reading. Which was nothing.
3. Dont Chinese restaurants usually stock sambal? Waitress gave me a quizzical look when I asked for it and said they only have cut chili and garlic.
4. Yes! Le food is served! I picked out all the green vege and arranged it around my clean plate, next comes the fish cakes (too much! Note to self: to tell them no fish cakes) and lastly the springy noodles in the middle nicely spread out to allow maximum heat convection. 
In hindsight, another weird habit by this kid. I hope the waitresses did not notice. 
5. Gosh, every mouthful of the starchy egg gravy with perfectly proportioned noodle to egg to pork slices was like a burst of flavour in my mouth.
6. Right on the top of the horfun is a very thin layer of egg that is juuuuuust 80% cooked to orgasmic perfection and oh so smooth when you slurp it down.
7. Sufficed to say, it took me a while to finish everything.
The already slow eater was even slower today. No rush ma..
If you don't know already what I ordered, it's the simple and ubiquitous Chinese meal for one:
Cantonese style wat tan ho.
Now that i think of it, the dish Most certainly lived up to its name.

NO PICTURE CAN DO IT ENOUGH JUSTICE!

Sometimes, Secretly..

I fantasize about stopping my car by the road and running the rest of the 12km to my house during my drive back into this peaceful town.