Friday, July 31, 2009

An I-Run Evening By The Riverside

I-Run @ River Promenade, 30 July 2009

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Monday, July 27, 2009

Kingfishers @ Time Trials

Ops Kingfisher Session #4: Time Trials

This was the day of reckoning for Ops Kingfisher. A record number of more than 70 runners turned up for Session #4, time trials and the second Newton Shoe trial. 35 had signed up in advance for the shoe trials, with a few more walk-ins...seemed like our partner KPI were prepared for the anticipated demand.

Team FatBird's kingfishers gathered at The FatBird Nest from 6.50am for registration, and soon there were lots of chatting and sharing amongst the crowd. We conducted the pre-run briefings at 7.15am, followed by the customary Group Photo shot. There were quite a number of fast runners, coupled with quite a few new faces too....The FatBird family is really growing fast :)

Kingfisher #4 Pre-Run Briefing

4 Pace Groups were offered to the 21km runners as guide posts, and the U-turn was at the traffic junction just before crossing to the Park Connector to Changi Coastal Road. After flagoff from the start-point near 7-11, the pacers soon took their respective paces. Keonz and Max went ahead to cover the 1:30-1:45h group. DO and I paced the 1:45-2:00h group, although we were more running at the front pace. Henry covered the pace nearer to 2:00h. Yamsong, Wee, Darren and about 20 runners were in our group. There were about 20 runners in the 2:00-2:15h group, led by Jancy, Spencer and YN. The remaining 25 runners joined the 2:15-2:30h and 10km groups led by Terry, Beng and Esther.

The 1:45h group settled into a steady 4:54min/km pace after 2km. There were many army running groups all along the way, many of them doing AHM time trials too. Eugene was spotted taking down timings for his unit. There was a large OCS (Officer Cadet School) team as well. They were looking at the large TFB running groups as well, distinction being that there ware quite a number of babes and uncles in our groups, compared with their mainly young hunks only groupings....haha. WE made the halfway point at the traffic junction in 4:55min/km average pace. The caucasian gal was leading the way. Darren was at the turning point showing the way. Quite a number of new runners were just, all doing not bad, about 5:05min/km pace.

The way back was quite ok, maintaining 4:55min/km pace. I had moved up slightly and was ahead for most of the way. When I passed the Chalet area, the World Harmony Runners (WHR) were gathered for one of their stops. A number of people shouted for me, and I waved and clapped for them. They are doing an 18km run for world peace and harmony...for a good cause. I had joined the WHR in 2006 and 2007. It was a real experience running and stopping at various religious and historic places to spread peace and harmony.

With 4km to go, and the heat from the emerging sun, my pace dropped to a 4:56min/km average. I was feeling winded...and slowed down to a more tolerable speed. There were a couple more TFB runners at 5min/km pace not too far back. The Newton Cushion Racer I wore held on well, remaining light throughout. With a bit more running, I finally reached back to the Nest and start point in 1hr40min...not bad for a 21km, and a little faster than the 5min/km pace I had to do. Robert, Sham and the KPI team were already at the end point welcoming the runners back.

Freshening Up @ FatBird Watering Hole

It was a good time trials for all the Kingfishers, with quite a number doing their Personal Best (PB) for the 21km and even 10km distances. All were in high spirits, despite the heat and the thirst. The 100plus we brought along were depleted in no time. We will need to replenish the FatBird Watering Hole fund soon to cater for more isotonic drinks and bananas to runners. The Kingfishers were happily chatting away and sharing experiences with one another. It was not till 10am that most started leaving. Many of them had the satisfaction of knowing they will complete the respective distances they have signed up for with confidence, and quite a few quietly gunning for PBs.

The next 2 weeks will see us tapering to 18km, followed by 15km for the 6th and final session, holding on the same targeted pace. A final Newton Shoe Trial session will be conducted at the 6th training check for the schedule HERE. Team FatBird Shoe Reviewers will be posting up video interviews and feedback from the runners who have tried the various models of the for that and the Team Reviews as well.

Photos by FatBirds Spencer, DO
Video Interviews by FatBirds YN, Keonz

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Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Ops Kingfisher Session #3 - Pace Running

Kingfishers @ Team FatBird's Nest, The PlayGround @ Big Splash

More than 60 Kingfisher runners gathered at Team FatBird's Nest for week 3's training. With just 4 weeks to go before race day, all are prepared for the start of pace training for the 21km distance. FatBird DO gave a briefing of the pace training and the various pace groups (1:30-1:45h led by Keonz, 1:45-2:00h led by Anthony and DO, 2:00-2:15h led by YN, Spencer and Jancy, 2:15-2:30h led by Terry and Beng). FatBird Esther led the 10km running group. FatBird Keonz provided a good overview of the route and U-turn points for the 10km, 13km and 18km distances.

Training & Route briefing @ Team FatBird's Nest

With endurance base-building done, we started off running at our optimum sustainable pace. There was noticeably less runners and groups at ECP that morning, although the army groups were still out in force to ramp up their AHM training. Keonz was in front, followed by Choon, Han and Darren. I stayed behind at an average 5:03min/km, gradually dropping it to 5:00min/km by 6km. There was a group slightly behind...possibly 5:15min/km pace. zco saw us near the Food Centre, and joined the 5min pace group for a bit.

I had with me my Ultimate Direction hydration belt with Gatorade mix, dispensing the need for any water stops, allowing continuous running. I was feeling ok all the way to NSRCC (9km mark). The front group took a quick break from the water sprinkler, while I turned back without stopping. As we passed the various pace groups, we cheered for them and informed of the U-turn. It was nice to see the various TFB groups running at pace and acknowledging one another as we pass. I had dropped the average pace to 4:58min/km by the time I hit F2 carpark. The weather was humid, and the sun was rearing itself with strong rays.

With 3km to go, I closed the gap to run along Han and Darren, before moving up to maintain the 4:58min/km pace to finish in 1hr29min. Wee and his friend was already at the end, cheering the runners. We had a good chat, while cheering the returning runners. Arthur and YN looked very strong, as they finished the 18km at The PlayGround. We assembled back at the FatBird Nest to get iced-cold 100plus and bananas....heavenly. A number of enquiries about Run For A Cause (RFAC) Charity Running, as well as FatBird's plans for pacing and marathon training for SCSM09.

TFB Media Crew on location, The Sand Pit, FatBird's home

SCSM09 had just been launched on July 16, and all the runners are already getting excited, gearing up for this big event. Team FatBird should be having 1-2 Marathon Training Programs to help the many SCSM09 runners and RFAC participants. Session #4 of Ops Kingfisher next Saturday will be a full-dress rehearsal of sorts, with a 21.1km Time Trial and Newton Shoe Trials. It will be a good opportunity for all FatBird runners to gauge their likely achievable completion timings. So we will expect to see more Kingfishers next weekend.

Follow FatBird's Beat, Achieve Your Feat!

Photo Slideshow by FatBird Spencer


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Thursday, July 16, 2009

The Crimson Sunbird

The Crimson Sunbird, courtesy Yathin S K

What a majestic colorful and green :)

The Crimson Sunbird is the national bird of the Republic of Singapore.

Crimson Sunbirds are tiny, only 11cm long. They have medium-length thin down-curved bills and brush-tipped tubular tongues, both adaptations to their nectar feeding.

More information about this interesting bird HERE

Now...what has the Crimson Sunbird to do with Running? hmmm

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Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Will Group Running Get BIGGER?

(This article first appeared @

Team FatBird continued with its record-breaking streak by smashing the barely 1-week old record attendance with an UNPRECEDENTED turnout of 211 runners at the I-Run @ River Promenade this evening. There was nary a can of 100plus nor a bottle of Ice Mountain left at the end, with a number of runners happy to go back to their nearby offices and coffee-shops for extra rounds of refreshments.

I-Run @ River Promenade on 14July09, courtesy FatBird DO

It was a satisfying run for many of the new-comers, first-timers and seasoned I-Runners alike, caught up with the Group-running atmosphere and pacing by Team FatBird run marshals. The 5km distance alone saw 90+ runners, followed by the 7km, 10km and then 3km indication of the popularity and competencies of the mid-distance groups of 5km-7km.

This Group-Running wave bodes well for the local running scene, especially ahead of the launch of the largest running event in Singapore, The Standard Chartered Singapore Marathon (SCSM09). Is this an early indication that attendance at this year's SCSM09 will see a record turnout? We shall wait in anticipation as official registration opens this Thursday, July 16.

Meanwhile, we too await news of more drinks and logistics support for this growing I-Run community....will we see attendance hitting 250 runners in one session? It remains to be seen :)

Follow Our Beat, Achieve Your Feat!

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Sunday, July 12, 2009

Nike-SHAPE Breakfast Run 2009 Finale

It has been 6 weeks of run and fun with the group of 100 Nike-SHAPE Run participants. A 5km tapering distance with group photos provided a fitting finale with a record turnout for. Thanks to Nike Singapore who put together this 6-week training series, and assigned Team FatBird and Racers Toolbox to provide Training and Pacing for the Nike-SHAPE Women. Here are memories of the final group training session.

Photos by FatBird DO


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Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Running The BAY? FatBirds Will Show The WAY!

Photo Contributions from Daniel Wee, Clarence Pong, FatBirds DO & Spencer
Video Interviews by TFB Media (FatBirds Keonz, YN)

Operation Kingfisher Training Crew

100+ runners have signed up for Operation Kingfisher, Team FatBird's 8-week program to prepare runners for this years SBR/AHM. After 2 weeks of base-building runs, 40+ runners gathered at The PlayGround @ Big Splash this morning...good to see many familiar faces, participants of Ops NightHawk and i-Runs, as well as new faces who have joined in TFB's training programs for the first time.

The Kingfisher Training Team was decked out in Newton Running and 2XU to put the Science Of Motion to some trials and testing. After wearing the Newtons for a few weeks, the team is ready to bring these fast-running shoes for training and race-day use. After registration and the customary group photos, we set out for the 13km distance in 3 paced groups...5:00-5:30min/km pace led by FatBirds Keonz, DO, Anthony; 5:30-6:00min/km pace led by FatBirds YN, Jancy, Spencer and 6:00-7:00min/km led by FatBirds Beng and Terry. The weather turned clear and the morning sun reared itself soon after we launched.

Han, Choon, Wee, Darren and about 4 more paced Keonz at 4:40min pace up front, while Yamsong, Silvia, Daniel, Yong and 5 more went with DO and Anthony at 4:55min pace. There was a larger mid-pack group, and then Charlene, Amy, SC and the rest went with Terry. We maintained a very steady pace throughout, albeit a little faster than target for the initial 5km. All did a U-turn at the first toilet after F2; everyone looking cheery in spite of the fast pace put on. The Newtons held up well, with their striking colours and design standing out.

Kingfisher Runners trotting in step

FatBirds Spencer and DO were cheering the runners and taking photos as they turn at the 6.7km mid-point. Eileen and Ang joined us midway after they had done their 25km and 21km runs....they are already thinking of the TNF100 Trail Race in October...haha. I joined Raymond and Min for the remaining 5km at about 5:25min/km pace.....they were getting strong, no race day, they will surely go below 2hr. Zhi Lei and her friend was also keeping up quite well with Benny's group at around 6min/km pace.

TFB Media interview of Ops Kingfisher Participants

We were pleasantly greeted by Clarence with his dual camera and the large zoom lens at the final 500m stretch. The main group finished the 13km within 1hr15min, with a few doing 11km. We had 100plus and bananas support for the thirsty runners as reward for a good workout. More photo-taking by Clarence for the team and group as we posed by the seaside. TFB Media was also on hand to interview the team and trainees about their first session of Operation Kingfisher. It was a nice launch to the program, with more participants expected for the coming week #2 schedule....and Newton Shoe Trials to look forward to.

Running The BAY? FatBirds will show You The WAY!

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Sunday, July 05, 2009

Good Running Form

Recently, I have been trialing and exploring the Newton Running Shoes and its founders' propounded Science Of Motion. There are a host of educational videos on forefoot running and running form at the Newton Running site. The Science Of Motion philosopgy and practice professes that Forefoot Running gives us more speed and less running injuries. Below is a nice video on some of the good running techniques we can apply for better running form and performance.

Biomechanics Of Running, Source: Newton Running


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Thursday, July 02, 2009

Let It Slide. Let It Glide. What A Ride!

Team FatBird was on hand (and legs) at the Nike Running Club (Nike Store @ Wisma) to take the 20+ runners out on a 5km run to trial the newly launched Nike LunarGlide+ shoes. Sacha and Ben gave a good introduction to the key features of the shoes, and left the rest to the LunarGlide+ to do their actual 'running' :)

As evident in the photos, the Nike Runners had a swell time, and many gave good 'first-leg' reviews of the shoes. It seems that Nike has a potential winner in the LunarGlide+, more so with its suitability for a wide range of runners from neutral to those who over pronate not too severely. The ladies had it good this time with special features built just for them, not to mention the very attractive design and colour of those runners.

Let It Slide. Let It Glide. What A Ride!
The LunarGlide+


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