Sunday, February 26, 2006

Final Tapering LSD & The Duathlon

What started as a mini group Sunday tapering run, turned out to be an interesting gathering of about 20 SgRunners who not only ran about 10-15km, but also walked for abt 3km supporting the hunks and babes participating at the Duathlon.

DO, Brokie, Bee, Tekko, Bee, Ronnie, Cokiee, Divey, Clare Fern (MF Runner), Run3, Ken (Run3's friend), Daisiki (rare guest), cosmic, Yankee (long time no see), Sportventurer & Dream started off at about 7.30am from MacDonald's. We were joined later by SC5 (very steady looking....had the gals wowing), Kellylim, Dasher (the IPPT Gold awardee) Bug and taz who ran along, and gentle and his friend providing bicycle escort in their very chio biking outfits.

SgRunners gathered for the ECP 'Mew Mew' Run outside MacD

We had a good nice-paced run, and provided support with loud cheers and claps to Duatheletes IronManDreamer, James, Siong, Commando and DeathScythe of SgRunners; Eddie, Sam and Colleen from SAFRA Running Club; JJ and KCP from MR25; Slow&Steady and cw from trifam. It was very exciting to see the runners cum bikers running laps, and transitioning to their nice bikes...steady lah, all those who participated.

Also bumped into many friends, some from SAFRA Running Club, others from various sports groups and running communities. A very happening morning indeed. Finished off with nice cooling Brokie's Barley, some nice pics from Brokie's baby, and very warm chats about the many more run-together sessions we will have after the KL Marathon and NZ ironman races in March.

Nice cool Brokie's Barley: Cheers To A Good Run

Thanks to all who ran and biked together for the company. I was running slowly because of my blocked nose, but I thoroughly enjoyed the pace and distance, and I felt so much better after the run. I especially loved the shouting, screaming and clapping to support the Duatheletes...many people watching really thought we were the seow Runners...hahaha

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Friday, February 24, 2006

My 2nd Climbathon Training

Tapering has begun for the KL Marathon on Mar5. After my 35km LSD on Sunday, I did a short recovery run on Monday with wifey. On Wed evening, I joined DO and Kops for the Climbathon Training with Xavier and a few others. There were about 8 of us, and even then, a few of them left early after the run.

We started off at 7.15pm from SMU track for a 10km run in Botanic Gardens ground. DO and I were leading the run, and we had some fun touring Botanic gardens at night and getting a bit lost around Ginger Garden, Orchid Garden and what other gardens have you....haha. DO was testing out his new HRM, and fumbling a bit. Along the way, there were some heart-rate raising scenes...and that got the guys pretty excited...hehe. We exited Botanic Gardens, waited for a while for the rest to catch up, and then proceeded for a fun run in the old Tanglin Barracks within Dempsey area. There were a number of restarants and places to chill out in there, and we were speculating when we will run there for drinks and chit-chat one of these nights. We completed the run in about 56min, ending at SMU track again for a water break.

When the rest came back at about 8.45pm, we ran to the Farrer Road HDB block to do our stairs-climb repeats. I did a total of 5sets of 20floors each set, with approx lap times of 2:57, 3:15, 3:57, 3:32, 3:25. Took a 2min break after 3sets, and then finished off the 2sets. I felt much better this evening compared with last week. I hope to continue with this Climbathon training after my KL Marathon, and I will not push it further till then. I will take a break next week to do some swimming and more tapering. After the stairs climb, we jogged back, did a quick wash up and had yummy prawn noodles at Adam Food Centre. Do and I gave some feedback and suggestions to Xavier in the hope of improving the Climbathon training and team's preparedness, and hopefully our little contributions can play a part in helping this program succeed well...we shall see.

Did a 10km tapering run with the SAFRA MF runners on Thursday evening. Finally got to meet Woodstock aka Isabelle from SgRunners. I had a nice eay run along Depot Road, Queensway, through Jalan Hang Jebat, to Kent Ridge Park and finally back by Pasir Panjang Road and Telok Blangah Road. As usual the hard work came at the final 1km stretch of Telok Blangah Road. Divey's knees were still not okay, after resting for a few days. Eileen was in good form and looked happy after her good performance in the HK marathon. Bug, equally 'high' is now into speed training as he wants to improve his 10km and short distance run timings. DO looked good and is all set for a good performance at KL marathon. I have a slight sore throat, but otherwise, I am feeling good. Will look forward to a 20km LSD with the SgRunners this Sunday at East Coast Parkway.

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Sunday, February 19, 2006

2 weeks to KLIM06: The Final LSD

This morning we had the smallest turnout for any run at SAFRA MF. We were scheduled for our 36km LSD run from SAFRA Clubhouse -> Henderson Rd -> Harbourfront -> Keppel Rd -> Marina South (Marathon route) -> Shenton Way -> Esplanade -> Marina Promenade -> Nicol Highway -> Mountbatten -> National Stadium -> Kallang -> Crawford Rd -> Marina Promenade -> Esplanade -> Shenton way -> Keppel Rd -> Harbourfront -> Henderson Rd -> SAFRA Clubhouse...essentially part of the SCSM05 marathon route. The runners from HK mara were back, and we spent some time looking at the photos. Many are still recovering from the recent mara. DO, Bug, Teck Hou, Kumaran, Derrick and myself started off. Ong and Jaime were there to provide support and waited for us to have lunch 4 hours later...kudos!!

I had a good steamboat dinner and sweet potato soup last evening as carbo-loading for this morning's run..haaa. I also brought along 2 mini snicker bars to try as refuel on the run. Topped up 2 bottles with honeyed water. I just had a banana and coffee for breakfast. We started off pretty slowly, about 6min/km pace...I was bent on starting slow. We ran along the nice cool weather along Harbourfront, Keppel Road, then skirting Shenton Way and into Marina South. We followed the SCM Marathon route in Marina South and arrived at Victor's Superbowl after 1hr15min of running. Took a 100plus break there, and I popped 2 salt tablets to test the usefulness of salt to prevent cramps. In Marina South, I saw many bicycles parked neatly in an open area, and later found that they were for the NTU X-Phsique race. Many of the SgRunners and friends are in Sentosa this morning too for the NUS Biathlon. Hope they did well for their race there.

As we continued out from Marina South, Kumaran and Derrick left us, and the 4 of us continued out into Shenton Way, and then made the next stop at Collyer Quay. I estimated we had done about 16km by then, taking 1hr40min. We proceeded on around The Esplanade and onwards to Kallang and made a right turn in PA from KFC. The sun was out in force, and the weather was HOT. It was draining us, but I sort of welcomed it as it was good for conditioning. I had my white cap on, which did help to some extent. By the time we reached the Singapore Indoor Stadium, Bug and Teck Hou wanted a 100plus break. We made a 10min stop, and from there, ran in the sweltering heat towards Marina Promenade. This part of the run reminded me of the struggle I had during SCM05. This was the last 5km of the SCM05 route, and that was where I started to walk a bit then (due to cramps). At this point, I reduced pace a little and then ran into the shade of Marina Promenade...ahhh, sweet relief. Bug decided to go back on his own from there, as the heat was really getting to him. We continued to push on and made our final water stop at Collyer Quay again. I was feeling ok, except that the heat was getting to me a little. We had run an estimated 28km in 3hrs up to that point.

Made a 10min stop at Collyer Quay, and from there, we ran the final 7km back along Keppel Road, Harbourfront and then ClubHouse. The weather was very hot, and I could feel the heat in my cumulus building up. Up along Telok Blangah Road, I had to take a 200m walk to rest as well as allow the shoes' heat to dissipate. Finally reached the Clubhouse in about 3hrs40min, covering about 35km...1km less than originally planned, since we did a short detour inside PA. It was a good LSD, and the conditioning will be good for my physical as well as mental requirements. I hope this will be sufficient for my KLIM06 Marathon race...and if I get enough sleep, with no unexpected injuries or cramps during the race, I should be looking at a sub-4hr marathon. Wish me luck!

Distance Ran:35km ___Time:3hr40min____Pace:6:15min/km
Average HR:N/A____Max HR:N/A____KCal:2,400KCal est.

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Thursday, February 16, 2006

Mt. Kinabalu Climbathon Training

Found some time to join in the Mt. Kinabalu Training Wednesday evening. The training program had started for 2 weeks now. DO had joined 2 sessions of the training, and I wanted to try out the stairs climbing part of the program to guage my readiness for the Mar12 NTU VM. Divey came along for the run as well.

Reached the old SMU campus track early at about 6.20pm. Met DO, Divey, Kops, Yulan from SgRunners and then the rest of the trainees, along with the instructor Xavier and Carmen. Carmen gave a brief about the Climbathon Program, and away we went for our 10km run along 6th avenue. The route was all along heavy-traffic roads, and was rather noisy and boring. The pace was pretty slow at first to get everyone warmed up, and subsequently was increased for a relatively good workout. We did about an hour of running, assembled back at the SMU track, had a short break, and proceeded to the HDB flats along Farrer Road for our stairs-climbing workout. Divey did not join us for this part as she was having some ITB issues.

We ran for about 1.5km to the 23storey HDB flat, and was supposed to do 8 sets of 20floors each. Led by Xavier, we started to walk up a step at a time. We were told that we need to condition ourselves for this new type of training, and to take it easy at first. When I reached the first 20, I was still feeling good...not much panting, legs still ok. Took a lift down, and started off again. I selectively timed the climbs, and did timings from 3min - 3:30min for the 5 sets that I completed. I was rather tired by the 5th set, and decided to call it a day...have to see what will happen to my legs and body the next day, and also not overwork myself ahead of my long runs on Thursday and Sunday. As I am typing this on Thursday, I feel aches. After the climb, we had a quick drink of H2O, before jogging back the 1.5km back to SMU Track.

The training ended at about 10pm, quite late. We had a quick wash up, and together with Xavier, Divey and DO, we went to nearby Adam Food Centre for carbo-reloading. Overall, it was a night of good and hard workout, though I hope that we can end earlier next time when all participants have settled into the Program, and there is a good routine going. I plan to go for more of these run/climb/run combo training if time permits and there are no clashes with any marathon training.

Did a 10km fast run Thursday evening at The Running Lab. I was down to try out the new Nike runners... put on a Skylon (which is pretty good looking, and its sole is modelled after the Nike Free for flexibility) and ran along the river front at Marina Promenade. It was a good run, with a large turnout of about 40 people. I finished the run in about 50min. Didn't really get used to the shoes as there were too flexible, and there was an exaggerated roll with each landing of the feet. It feels as light as my DS Trainer. My right calve and ankle were feeling sore after that run... I may not be too used to the trial shoes.

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Monday, February 13, 2006

Valentine Week

Managed to sneak in a 10km run amidst the many dinners this week. Having dinner with my lovely wifey and kids, and so will miss the SAFRA 18km run on Valentine's day. So found some time this evening before my dinner, slipped on my DS Trainer, and did a 10km TT around my regular neighbourhood route. Before that, I did a 2km warm-up to loosen the muscles a little.

The pace was good, and the traffic wasn't that bad this evening. There was quite a fair amount of light through 7.15pm, and that allowed me to push a little faster. Went through most of the traffic junctions quite smoothly. Along the way, I was planning for the week's run, and most likely will join DO for the MK Climbathon training on Wed. I really need to do some stairs climbing to prepare the the Mar12 NTU Vertical Marathon. I finished the run feeling strong, clocking 47min15sec for the 10km. Its not the best timing I have done for the route, but close enough, and I felt so much better during this run that before. Maybe the warm up had a part to play.

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Sunday, February 12, 2006

Sunday LSD From MacRitchie To Mandai Zoo

3 weeks more to KLIM05. Today will be my second last LSD in preparation for my marathon. Picked up hui ling and DO to MacRitchie, reaching at about 6.45am. Soon we were joined by Eng Hwa, Adam, Yuen and Teck Hou. We did some light warm up alongside the large group of MR25 runners under the guidance of Uncle Lim. They too were doing their regular Sunday LSD. Our small group started off at about 7am, and ran along Thomson Road to Lower Pierce Reservoir, before taking our first water stop at the toilets. I was sticking to my pre-planned 6min/km pace.

The weather was cool and nice, with the sun slowly rearing its head. We ran along Upper Thomson Road (skipping OUTR) towards Seletar Reservoir (SR). At the entrance to SR, we took a 100plus break and did some light stretches. A check with my HRM indicated that we had ran for about an hour, approx. 10km. Adam and Yuen proceeded to run into SR, while the remaining 5 of us ran further up towards Mandai Zoo. This is the first time I am running up ahead, skirting round SR. The morning view of the Reservoir was nice, as we ran along the hard concrete pavement leading to the Zoo. That was the one thing I didn’t quite like, and that was the concrete pavement we had to run along. We turned into the 2km road leading to Mandai Zoo, and had a 10min break at the Zoo entrance. That was the halfway mark…a body sense told me I was feeling good; the pace was not too fast.

We ran back out from the Zoo, back to the main Mandai Road…and we could see large groups of cyclists zooming past. On the way back, Teck Hou bade farewell and ran back to his Yishun home. The 4 of us remaining, took our final water stop at the earlier Seletar Entrance. From there we ran into SR, and this time we took the OUTR to get more time on tarmac, instead of more concrete pavement on Upper Thomson Road. DO and I were running as a group in front, with hui ling and eng hwa closely behind. We took a quick stop at Lower Pierce before proceeding back along Thomson Road. The sun was getting hot as it was about 10pm then. We had been on the road for about 2hr40min. The legs were getting slightly sore from the pounding on concrete pavement earlier. We reached back to MR in about 3hr10min, covering a total distance of 30km-31km. A very good and satisfied run, and very good average heart rate of 141bpm, mostly within the correct zone for that distance. Both hui ling and eng hwa were happy with their runs too. Adam had returned an hour earlier, and had his drink already. A nice Sunday LSD for me, and glad to have covered 30km today. I will have my final LSD of 36km next Sunday, before tapering for KLIM06.

Distance Ran:31km ___Time:3hr11min____Pace:6:09min/km
Average HR:141bpm___Max HR:167bpm__KCal:2,100KCal est.

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Thursday, February 09, 2006

Botanic Gardens @ Night

Did an easy 15km run From SAFRA MF to Botanic Gardens. A few of the runners Ong, Jaime, Wong, Kumaran, Derrick & Alan are tapering for the HK Marathon this Sunday, most of them leaving on Friday for HK. Bug & Shamrock are already there.

Another large turnout, and after we came out from the canal and into Ridley Park/Dempsey Road, it was just the few of us. I was having a nice easy run with mostly with DO, Adam, Derrick, Divey and Wong. Took our usual and only water break at the 2nd toilet stop within Botanic Gardens. The weather was nice and cool, just after the earlier afternoon rain. Ran along Farrer Road for a bit, then towards Queensway, before we turned into the long stretch of Margaret Drive. I sped up a little here to try to inject some fartlek speed runs along this stretch into the otherwise steady pace we held. Divey later suggested that this stretch should be called the 'Demoralizing Stretch'...hahaha

Distance Ran:15km ___Time:1hr23min____Pace:5:32min/km
Average HR:155bpm___Max HR:173bpm__KCal:1,031KCal

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Tuesday, February 07, 2006

A Chop Chop Run, A Yum Yum Makan

Had a short 12km run this evening. I was a little late to the ClubHouse today, but fortunately made it on time. Quite a big bunch of runners have gathered, more than 20. DO and I ran quite a constant pace through the Canterbury Estates, and then to Labrador Park for a loop around, skipping the slopes. With the number of injuries suffered by runners recently, and with KLIM coming up, I want to go slow on the hills.

Completed the good workout in 1hr6min (5:30min/km pace). After wash-up, we all adjourned to cm's house for a very nice Yu Sheng dinner.

The next run with be this Thursday from MF to BG.

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Sunday, February 05, 2006

Final Month To KL Marathon: Sunday LSD

It is exactly 1 month to the KL International Marathon (KLIM) 2006. I had my LSD today to Marina South as part of preparation for the 42.195km distance. There was a small group today, with a lot of the MF Runners tapering for the Feb12 HK Marathon. So it was Kumaran, DO, Eileen, Claire, Hui Ling and myself to do the full 26km route of:
[Clubhouse -> Henderson Rd -> Tiong Bahru Park -> Havelock Rd -> Clark Quay -> Esplanade -> Esplanade Second toilet (U-turn) ->Esplanade -> Marina South (Marathon route) -> Keppel Rd -> Harbourfront -> Henderson Rd -> Clubhouse]. Divey, alanyeo, Lee, jaime and Ong will do the same route, but skipping the Marina South portion for a 15km distance.

We started off promptly at 7.30am, and after the usual traffic stops along the initial part of this route, the front pack broke free at Kim Seng Bridge (Zouk). Kumaran was in front, with Tay, me and DO. Hui Ling, Eileen and Claire were just behind. When we reached The Esplanade, Tay and the rest went for a break whilst we continued to the 2nd toilet at Marina Promenade. We reached that U-Turn Point in about 50min, covered about 9km....quite a nice pace. After waiting for the rest to arrive, we continued the next leg to Marina South. The sun was up but with the cool winds, it was pretty pleasant. We maintained the same pace and had another water stop at Clifford Pier toilets. Nearby we caught a crime scene for a murder. After the break, Divey, alanyeo and the rest ran back to ClubHouse, skipping Marina South. The 6 of us continued to Marina South for an additional 10km distance (most of it being the marathon route for Standard Chartered Marathon).

We had our final water stop at Victor's SuperBowl...topped up our tanks with 100plus. A quick break, and off we went again....and we came out through Prince Edward Road, and then Shenton Way. Claire and Eileen decided to take a cab back to Clubhouse because of nagging knee pains. Kumaran, DO, Hui Ling and me continued on for the final 6km or so..along Keppel Road, HarbourFront, passed Morse Road and then round the bend up the slopes of Telok Blangah Road. The weather was cool, and that helped us maintain our good pace. We reached the ClubHouse in 2hr25min of running time. I estimated we covered 25km. Had a quick stretch, wash-up and makan at the nearby Hawker Centre before making our way back home. DO was so inspired by Chi Running, that he asked to be dropped off at Raffles Place to get the book. Hope that he can pick up a kill or two to allow him to have many hours of injury-free and efficient, ergonomical running.

Distance Ran:25km ___Time:2hr25min____Pace:5:48min/km
Average HR:154bpm___Max HR:180bpm__KCal:1,873KCal

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Saturday, February 04, 2006

NRR: What Colour Should My BLOG Be?

Your Blog Should Be Blue

Your blog is a peaceful, calming force in the blogosphere.

You tend to avoid conflict - you're more likely to share than rant.

From your social causes to cute pet photos, your life is a (mostly) open book.

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Thursday, February 02, 2006

The 'Lou Hei' Run

shucks...just when I was about to save this entry, my computer hung up on this will be a shorter version.....hmm

Did a 11km run at East Coast Parkway on Tuesday. The sun was out in its full glory. Beverly ran with me too, while the kiddos went on their bikes. Bev cut short her run as the sun was getting to her. I ran mostly on my own, soaking in the sights of that bustling place....and the lagoon is up now, being made into a cable-ski lagoon... a crowd was there watching skiers do their stuff. Ran all the way to the toilets after the Food Centre, and then back all the way to MacDonalds. The extra distance came from an earlier up and down towards Fort Road. A nice workout to burn off some excesses from the recent CNY carbo-load-and-load :).

This evening's plan was a short run of 10km up to Mt. Faber, before we go for a nice dinner to loh hei or 'toss the fish sald' to usher in a bright and prosperous new year for our runners and friends. DO, Divey and me met up earlier at 6.10pm for a 5km warm up run around Telok Bangah/ Harbourfront Loop. when we reached back to the ClubHouse at 6.45pm, we joined the main group of about 25 MF Runners for the 10km run. We started off quite fast, and soon the faster runners were bunched in front. I was running my own steady pace, and when I climbed up Mt. Bahru from Kampong Bahru side, I could feel the strain on my tired legs. I was gasping for deep breath as I reached the top, and it was nice recovery for me on the downslope to Morse Road from there. I was running slowly and carefully on the downslope, not wanting to cause any strain on my knees.

As I turned towards Kampong Bahru for the second time, Jimmy & DO overtook me, and I ran behind them at about 50m all the way back to Clubhouse. I clocked 51min for the 10km....reasonable...considering the upslope...a good workout for me definitely. I later found that BabyMon, Bug and Alan did 45min...they are fast, and surely will do well at the upcoming HK Marathon...all the best for Mf Runners who are running there.

After a quick cleanup, we went for our 6-course dinner with loh hei. The yusheng was good, and the fodd was not bad too...just a tad too much seasoning. Had a hearty meal and shared some good time with great company....looking forward to a good rest the next 2 days before this Sunday's LSD of 26km.

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