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Sunday, February 27, 2011

NTUC Healthcare U-Run 2011

My first stair event and first race for the year. In fact, it is my first 10km race since April 2010. But that was a trail race so if I exclude that, the next 10km race was Nov 2009 which was another trail race which means the last 10km road race I did was the inaugural Yellow Ribbon Run in Sep 2009! Has it really been that long?

Anyway, the only reason I signed up for this was I got a free slot and since it was free, decided to go all the way and try for the OMB event which involves a 10km road race followed by a 30 floors climb up One Marina. I figured with my bad knees I couldn't survive a full vertical marathon of 60 to 70 floors but a 30 floors sound doable.

With 3 practice at the HBD block behind me, I started off this morning run with just that little bit of extra confidence. I wasn't going to gun for any PB. In fact, for the past 3 weeks, mileage has been rather low what with the holidays, the mostly easy runs at RL and the many trails, the legs wasn't really up to scratch for a race and I reckoned if I can just do a 6 minutes pace run, I should have sufficient reserve to go up the 30 floors and survive the climb in one piece. Just to be sure and kiasu a bit, applied a whole lot of Jumpstart before setting off.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Sarawak Bako National Park - Not a Walk in the Park

Continuing on from where I last left off, we finally reach the highlight of our trip, the trip to Bako National Park where we hoped to see the Proboscis Monkey, stick insects, snakes and whatever creatures that lurked in the park.

For once, it was a fine day as our trusty taxi driver and unofficial tour guide took us to Kampong Bako to begin our ‘adventure’. From there, it was a 20 minutes boat ride on a little boat to the Bako National Park. The ride was quite exciting, what with a big sign at the Jetty warning against crocodiles. What if like the movie a big croc came and overturn our puny little boat? But of course no such luck. We didn’t even spot one of them.

Once at the park, we had to sign in at the office and were given a trail map and we had to indicate to the staff which trail we were going on. The map listed all the various trails and the approximate walking time along each trail. We, of course being typical kiasu Singapore, had to get our money worth and so we picked one of the longer trail, the Tajor trail that would take us 5 hours to complete, just in time for us to take our 2.30pm boat ride back to civilization.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Face white white, legs like jelly

It started off well enough. Originally wanted to go swimming but M said she wanted to do a short run since she wasn’t free for the next couple of days. So we did an easy 8 km run around the neighbourhood. Not satisfied with the run, and since I have my first stair event coming up next week, I decided to do a “dry run”.

So after the run, went to the nearest block and dutifully tried to run up the first few flights of stairs. M laughed when she saw my first few movements and told me she could do it faster than me. She had originally said she wasn’t going to do the stairs and so I did she then reckoned she could beat me to the top so she decided to follow suit. So I huffed and puffed and pulled myself 2 steps at a time to the top – all 13 floors of it. M? After the first few floors, I didn’t hear her movement. Maybe she fell down the stairs? No such luck. She came up shortly and said she gave up at the 7th floor lol!

We took the lift down and she decided she had enough while I went for a second set. This time, the legs were really like stone and I had to literally haul myself up each flight of step. And when I finally took the lift back down and M was waiting there, she said my face was all white like I seen a ghost. Luckily she didn’t notice the legs shaking. The legs were quavering like jelly and I had to hold on to the pillar for support while pretending to do some stretches.

Yesterday run was just 8km compared to 10km next week and the 26 floors I did should be equivalent to just 20 floors of Marina One? I think I am in big trouble next week.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Run & Raisin' 2011

Run & Raisin' is an inaugural charity run by TOUCH Young Arrows (TYA). TYA is a service of TOUCH Community Services, a not-for-profit charitable organisation officially registered in 1992 and a member of the National Council of Social Service. Besides running for charity, participants can also take part in an exciting carnival which would be held concurrently. 

Through Run & Raisin', TYA aims to raise $100,000 to meet the needs of the 300 disadvantaged children and their families under our care, increase public awareness of TYA's work in the community, promote family bonding and a healthy lifestyle. 

TYA is committed to care for children aged six to 12 years old from single-parent and low-income families. Children who lack family support and who are also struggling academically are given tuition at the 12 TYA clubs island-wide. TYA aims to build positive character traits and leadership qualities in the children who may otherwise be vulnerable to negative influences around them. Through games, competitive sports and recreational activities, TYA also helps these children learn to build rapport and interact with their families and friends to help them strengthen parent-child and social relationships. For more information on TOUCH Young Arrows' services, please

For more information on Run & Raisin’ click here.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Team Fatbird Eastside Lunar New Year Run

Running along Changi Broadwalk
Once again, when I should be enjoying my sleep, I dragged my butt off the bed and headed out for a run. Sometime I wonder why I do this weekend in and weekend out especially as it was a glorious public holiday and time to relax. Nevertheless a commitment had been made and so we dutifully went up to Changi Beach to join a lot (I think there were over 70) of likewise crazy people who prefer running to feasting for the - by now the annual Team Fatbird CNY Run in the East.

We started off along the scenic Changi Boardwalk, a narrow 2.5km path parallel to the sea. The sights were great (there was the sea, the sun, fishermen and fish and birds) and I think everybody enjoyed themselves along this stretch of the run. The only sorry sight was the vast amount of litters left behind no doubt by the hordes of anglers over the long holiday.

From there, we proceeded along Cranwell Road to Loyang Ave. Too bad there wasn’t time to pay a visit to the Old Changi Hospital (this will have to do), a place that always give me the creep whenever I pass by. Down long boring Loyang Ave, and finally we reached the 2nd highlight of the run – the Loyang Tua Pek Kong Temple.

Outside the Loyang Tua Pek Kong Temple
The temple itself had relocated a few years ago from its original site at the end of Loyang to its more central location among the factories. Because it was the Chinese New Year, there were some festivities going on in the temple. There were huge paper mache figures of the 12 animals in the Zodiac; the usual deities and dragons and best of all, free soya milk and bee hoon! We spent I think an inordinately long time there with some runners enjoying the food, some praying for blessing and of course some looking for 4-D numbers!

Changi Museum & Chapel
Next we went to Tanah Merah Besar via Old Tampines Road where the runners gathered to gawk at the airplanes taking off. An u-turn later, we found ourselves at our 3rd highlight – the Changi Museum and Chapel where we took a moment to remember the war heroes who perished in the Changi Prison. Of course, there was the usual madcap photo before we move off. 9km done!

Back to Loyang Ave but enroute, some runners took an unofficial detour to look at the Johore Battery. I stayed with the few stragglers; had been staying with them since the start of the runs and we went straight but still, the detoured runners soon caught up and dashed off back to Changi Beach while we continued our stroll back.

Total distance taken: app 15km. Total time taken: 3 hours 3………. So did I regret getting out of bed for this so short and yet so long run? Well, it was kinda tiring to take so much time to do this distance but on the other hand, I have to admit I did have some fun so it wasn’ really too bad after all.

Look at the sights here.

Friday, February 04, 2011

My Heavy Left Foot

Yesterday after the evening run, the whole left foot was burning up. As usual after a run in the Tyr water booties or barefoot, there are blisters, sometime 1 but most time at least 2 and all on the left foot.

Closer examination of my 3 pair of current shoes show the following

Nike Lunarglide - the left mid foot is almost fully worn out compared to the right 

Same with the Zoots Ultra Tempo

And the Tyr Water booties show the most damage on the left including 1 big hole.

Anybody got advice how to land more lightly on the left?