Monday, August 30, 2010

Updates!!!

....and I bet you thought I've left the cyber-world of blogging without any trace...

But I'm back, y'all!!!

Anyway...short update on my so-called-life.

I've completed the City 2 Surf Marathon in Perth yesterday.
7th full marathon this year.....one more till I qualify for silver level Marathon Maniac...

But then again, it's only 5 more before end of March 2011 to qualify for gold level MM!
(decisions..decisions..do I have the patience?)

Anyway..completed yesterday's race in 5:00:10!

Not astoundingly fast a timing....but it's my official PERSONAL BEST!!!!
(quick pat on the back for self)

I know....I may run a lot but I'm still super slow....(sigh)

Will have the (FULL) write up soon enough. But in the meantime, do enjoy some of these photos.


* At the start, at the Esplanade.

* Aussies like to dress up quirky for their races...especially the middle of the pack sort.

* Cam-whoring always makes the race more fun..(what?! You mean it doesn't work for YOU!?)

* Running back into the city for the second half of the race.

* The supporters were AWESOME!!!

* Giving props to self....(fine, all joke aside....props to Mo and Flo!)


Later!!!!!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Food galore!!!

I did not realize that it was STILL winter in Perth.....until the plane landed.
I swear....I thought it was already spring!!!!

Needless to say....I'm not that well prepared in the clothing department.
However, it is a real good reason for further shopping....then I realized that I only brought enough money to serve my gluttony.

So either freeze my perky arse off....or give up on gluttony...?

Such a difficult choice.

In the end....the stomach won and now I'm getting the mind to trick the body into thinking it's not that cold after all!!!

Really!!! It ain't that cold, come to think of it!!!

Yea...I would love to elaborate on how I'm getting the body tricked into "warm-weather" mode....but I haven't quite gotten that trick to the fingers just yet thus I can barely feel them as I type out this blog post!
Yes folks...cold weather does that to the peripheries of the body!!
(thank goodness I don't have extra appendages down there....)

Anyway....food has been good (make that GREAT!!!)....and I'm so thankful I can pull off this over-eating....and mask it under the ever so fantastic term called "carbo-loading".

Yes...it's good to be a (recreational) runner!

Anyway...photo-log (to show the 'preparation' that I'm doing, leading up to the glorious event that is the marathon this coming Sunday. Oh yea..God bless the man who coined the term "carbo-loading"):

* We had our own steam-boat on the first night that we arrived in Perth!

* Me and my cousin, Karen...

* Me and my mom...(woah..that's me in years to come!!!)

* Love their sushi...the salmon is WAY bigger!!

* My niece (shit I'm old!) and I!!!

* Delicious latte from Gelare....I swear, it must be the dairy that makes all the difference!!!

* We went to the macadamia nut factory....meet my new friend, Patch! (mom...can we take him home?! Please!!??). That's Uncle Chris right behind...

* Fish and chips at the famous Ciccerello's....actually this was the seafood platter....

* At Dome (which originated from Frementle, Perth....) with cheese cake and fresh cream!
* At the strawberry farm tasting all the free strawberries....(of course I bought the pack after....I have to anyway. I tasted too many FREE ones that the lady was already giving me the eye!!!)
So....I'm still wondering what the hell I'm gonna be wearing on race day.
Sigh.
I'll worry about that on...say, Friday.

Just let me get back to my eating first!

Later!!!!

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Dinner with another foodie!



Talk about piling back on the calories burnt from this morning's LSD.....

Dinner with the shrink-uncle (the apparent pioneer in the family to be in psychiatry, thus paving the way for all future generations of our family tree to have some sort of link with this field. Hopefully not as patients...) before heading home to frantically pack for tomorrow's flight.

Yes...last minute person.
What to do....some things are hard to change. It must be some personality trait....possibly a mutated "personality" gene passed on to the only offspring by my parents....coz mom has packed since 2 weeks back!!!)

Anyway back to foodie shrink-uncle. It was a super-mini-family-reunion-dinner.....since majority of the remaining clan are in far corners of the world.

Nothing much to report on except for superb food and some photos to share with y'all!

Photo-log:

* Chicken rojak.....it didn't taste as weird as the name sounded....in fact it tasted pretty good!

* Spinach with 3 types of eggs.....salted, regular and century eggs!

* Lamb!!!! Glorious lamb!!!! (I'm so ashamed that I used to regard myself as vegetarian...sigh)

* Unagi fried tofu...

* Big on the tofu....small on the unagi.....

* Prawn curry noodle.....the soup tasted pretty good although I'm not a fan of crustaceans...

* Fruit platter...

* Aahhh...the best saved for last....the mango-sago-pomelo pudding with ice cream on top! Heaven!!!!
Btw, I think we ate at Oriental Restaurant, somewhere in Imbi, KL.
Again....that is another reason why I can never do food blogs...I can never remember the names of the restaurant....

Y'know...I've packed and rechecked what I've packed once (I'm not very obsessive with my packing and details like that....I tend to underpack most of the time)....but I have this strange feeling that I'm leaving something out.
Something crucial to this trip.
Something of utmost importance.
If only I could recall what the hell it is that I'm forgetting......


Oh well...I will remember it eventually if it as important as I feel it to be.

Later!!! (and try not to miss me...)

Leaving on a jet plane....soon!


Wednesday workout: 7km in "vibram".....surprisingly no pain at the calve or Archille's area.

Thursday workout: Another 7km in "vibram"....unfortunately plagued by chafing issues due to inadequate lubrication prior to wearing them.

I also realized on Thursday that I kinda like the pain from running "barefoot".

Masochistic.....perhaps.
But I think most endurance athletes have the innate ability to learn to like (if not love) pain as they push on to the "next level" in training.

Therefore I concluded that I'm pretty much NORMAL!

Friday workout: Moved the TV, the microwave, 5 years of accumulated medical textbooks and other nonsensical stuff that I manage to hoard over the past 3 years that I was residing in Ipoh......to my new place.
I already feel a whole lot buffer in the upper body!!

Saturday workout: 20km (more or less....although I'm favouring more this time around) morning run with the KL runners!!!

I posted on Facebook (it is THIS close to ruling my freakin life!!) earlier this week that I'm in search of a group of runners willing to go 20km in distance but at a very slow speed.
I focused on the word S.L.O.W......

Surprisingly, many commented and later messaged me on FB regarding Saturday's run.
I also contacted Uncle Terence (for his benefit, he is known to YOU as the incredibly good looking, smooth talking, filled to the brim in "masculinity", forever youthful, uncle Terence!) if he's gonna be running this Saturday (ie today).
I mentioned that I was looking to run 20km before City to Surf Marathon in Perth.
And I specifically mentioned the word SLOW.

I also casually asked him about my crush since they are always (at least I assumed so) in contact, and if he's gonna be running today.....only to have uncle Terence forwarding a message that he sent to "crush-boy" (yea...we're gonna refer to him as that from now onwards) telling him that I was interested in training speed with him.

I've decided that running uncles in the "super-veteran" age group (I'm kidding, uncle Terence....of course you're still young!!) aren't subtle in anything they do!!!
But on the up side, I now have my crush's number....(and have no idea what to do with it. I know, sometimes the obvious is NOT obvious to me!)

Anyway..back to the run this morning......
I showed up at Bukit Aman car park at 5.30am.
Would you believe it that prior to this, I have no freakin idea where this "famous" car park was located!!
I now feel so "KL"!!

Met up with Elaine and running-lovebirds Dannie and Carrie (gosh...even their names rhyme!!!)
and a whole lot of other runners (I'm sorry but I'm bad at names), some possibly on my Facebook list of contacts.
We first ran the Lake Garden loop....and then another loop around the Bird Park....which amounts to almost 7km.

And then head off to the famous "Double Hill".

I've no idea who's the wise guy who came up with that name.
It should have been called "All Hills" because it was exactly just that.

We came back to the car park and ran another loop around the Bird Park.
I was told this would almost amount to 20km.
I'll take their word for it.

Photo-log of post-run eating:

* We went to Petaling Street for wanton noodles.....pictured here are Elaine, Khai Leng and Andy.

* Andy and Ian enjoying their post-run meal...

* Dannie (new pose, I see....) and Carrie...



Anyway....I'm now in the midst of packing.
Actually, packing would be a fancy name as what I'm doing currently is more like, grabbing and stuffing.
Most important items to HAVE TO REMEMBER TO PACK.....would be my running shoes, passport and money.
Everything else is replaceable...(although I hope to replace nothing)

Alright folks....see you guys when I get back.

Later!!!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

I may suck at cycling....



Yes....

I'll admit.....

I may really suck at cycling.
I hate to say it....but I really do suck at it!

No...I'm not saying it to garner some sympathy...."oh-don't-worry-sweetheart-you-will-get-the-hang-of-it-soon" sorta thing.
I'm not even saying it, hoping some hot triathlete-sort will volunteer to ride with me to improve on my "technique" or whatever....(although if that does happen, I ain't gonna turn it down!!)

No....I'm saying it as a retrospective review of my performance in cycling....
(wait for it...)

.....ON A TRAINER!!!!

Yes.....I have now gotten myself a trainer in hopes that I will improve.
I really did not like having so many people overtake me in the biking leg during PD sprint tri.
(I can't help it....sometimes I can be such a sore loser....)

I just got it fixed up yesterday (and I think I may also be 'manual-reading' impaired to some degree) and today.....was the day (or the straw) that sorta broke the camel's back!

Alrite alrite...maybe I'm slightly overdramatizing things....

Let me just get back to the very start of when I start having thoughts of me being sucky at cycling.
Right from the moment when I gotten my pert behind (I have my narcissistic days...) on the very uncomfortable bike seat.

Since I'm not very sure if I got the bike fixed unto the trainer properly (or how riding a bike on a trainer would be like!)....I just started pedaling and toying with the gears as well as the control bracket that is attached to the handle bar.
Initially....there was no resistance at all no matter how hard or how slow I pedaled.
Turned the control device from one end to the other...no difference.

Ok...perhaps I've fixed the trainer wrongly.

I got off the bike...only to realized that the back wheel was barely in contact with the trainer.
(duh....only in MY world something this pathetic could happen)

Tweaked it again.

Then back on the bike.
Finally...some resistance!!!

And as I pedaled.....something weird happened.
After each 4-5 cadence, there was a feeling of a 'give' in the pedaling....and there would be this really loud clanky sound at the gear-area....despite me not toying with the gears at all.
This would happen again and again.
I couldn't figure out why.

Finally after 20 minutes...I gave up.

Also....I still feel that the handle bars are way too 'in front'.
And no matter how much 'padding' the cycling shorts have (I got some from eBay.....what can I say...I really like online shopping!)....my lady bits still hurts.

And when I try to let go of the handle bar and sit straight up....I feel myself sliding forward on the bike seat!!!

I'm THIS close to concluding that biking ain't for me.

So....does this mean I'm giving up the Ironman dream?
Shit NO!!!!

Didn't anyone tell you that the particular thing hardest to achieve, provides the best and sweetest satisfaction?!
(exactly the reason why completing the Ultra felt SO good and the same reason why I'm going back for more next year Sundown!)


* Tobias all set up and sorta ready to go!!!


Yes....perhaps it is time to give the cycling uncles another call.

* The salty-sweet savoury cake (with pork lard, apparently) that my patient baked for me!!!!

Guys.....give me your views regarding my biking "technique" or lack of it!!!

Oh....6 more days until Perth trip!!!
Definitely need another LSD this Saturday. Am aiming for 20km-ish.
Any takers?

Later!!!!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

The River Jungle Marathon 15/8/2010


Ran 43km in 6:40:30.

Yea I know it ain't a timing to get overtly excited about.
But this is afterall a non-race marathon.
More of a fun-run....but a full marathon distance.

Yup...it's one of those "boutique" marathons, organized by TheMarathonShop.com people (ie James and co) following the "success" of the Interstate Marathon (similar idea...only then we had 5 runners who were crazy enough to participate).

Initially when you register for this race, they gave the option of 3 race groups...the 5 hour team, the 6 hour team and the 7 hour team.
I opted for the 7 hour team......only to be called up by the race director and told that I was the only realistic idiot who signed up for the 7 hour team.
Therefore by default he's moving me up to the 6 hour team.
(but of course he reassured me the 7 hour "aid" is still available.....no one signs up with realistic expectations I suppose)

* June and Irwan driving me to the race site. Love u guys!!!

Anyway...showed up at James' house at 2.50am....and left with the 6-hour car (Irwan and June were driving. They came and gave support despite them fasting...thanks!!) and got to Hulu Langat with time to spare before the compulsory 4.30am race briefing.

* Mo-maniac with his Singaporean running friends....SC and Amy


* It's like BIM pasta party all over again! Zenon and uncle Oliver (the shit-fast walker!!!)

* The atmosphere pre-race was fun!!!!

* James and John giving the pre-race pep talk.

* Runners listening with all seriousness given to such an occasion.

* Meet the fantastic volunteers!!! You guys ROCK!!!

* Julie giving out the 'running for orang asli' tag.

We also had a surprise celebration for Mo-maniac's 100th marathon gig!!!
James' mom baked a HUGE chocolate cake....(thinking about it now makes me hungry!)

* Yummy cake that James' mom baked just for the occasion.

* Yay!!!


* Kenneth and David....2 FIRST TIMERS!!! I later asked David why he chose this race as his first marathon. His answer was that because this WAS NOT a race at all!!! Erm...ok.....

The race started with the 5 hour team heading off...and then the 6 hour team.


We were advised to bring headlamps as some stretches of the road were without streetlights.
Sigh....I shouldn't allow so many good advises fall on deaf ears...coz it was pitch black at some parts!!!
The weather was nice....it just rained earlier (when we were en route to race site) so it was nice and cool.
The run was great until about 23km.....and subsequently everything sorta went awry.

First it was the great 3km hill climb!
Yup....all the way up for the entire 3km.
Walked the entire way up. By that time, our little troop had grown to me, Yen Erl, Carrie & Dannie, and uncle Yap.
So it was more of a walk up....stop and take pictures (the view was to die for!) and chit-chatting about previous marathons and races...(what else do runners talk about?)

* And it keeps going up..and up...and up....

* It became a fun-walk at this point...

* The view...was spectacular!!! My camera does it no justice...you need to be there to take it all in!


* Drinking at the "rest-stop"....technically the car moves with the runners....

And once the hills stop....it was downhill and the fun started again.

* With Irwan, June and Julie at the 35km stop.

Well....at least it was fun until the sun came up and shone on us like there was no tomorrow!!!
I don't like the sun much.....especially not in a country like Malaysia.
Always makes me feel like a wilted flower. Sigh.

The last 3-4km stretch....it was already scorching.
It was down to me, Yen Erl, Dannie and Carrie.
We decided to walk most of the way back.

And finally.....I made it in 6:40:30.
See....I told them that the 7 hour team was in dire need!!!! (super optimistic runners never listen to common sense!!)

* My cert (and another for MM qualifier)

* Btw...I LOVE the colour of my Finisher's T!


GOOD BITS ABOUT RACE:
1. Small and intimate
2. Non-race.....it's a fun-run-marathon!
3. Fantastic volunteers/cheerleaders!!! (this race wouldn't be THIS FANTASTIC without you guys!!! Big clap for you!!!)
4. Good friends and celebration for partner-sifu, Mo-maniac!
5. Enough hydration and gels
6. Love love LOVE the Finisher's T!

BAD BITS ABOUT RACE:
1. Did I mention that I dislike hills...like, very much!?
2. Crush was not there AGAIN!!! *sob sob* (I'm starting to become paranoid that he's trying to avoid me....)
3. The sun was very strong at the last 7km
4. I forgot to bring my compression tights back to Ipoh with me...(yes I know it has NOTHING to do with the race but it's MY blog...therefore it is a bad bit!)

Initially....I planned for this marathon to be the last long run before City to Surf Marathon in Perth in 2 weeks time.
But now that it's all over...I'm itching for another shorter long run next Saturday before my flight on Sunday morning....


Sigh...another week back at work.

Later!!!