Thursday, March 31, 2011

Records tumble at The Sundown Roadshow

5km Run With Sundown Ambassadors
Photo Credit Official Sundown Photographer

The Sundown Marathon Roadshow from 30-31 March 2011 saw a few records being broken - The Sundown Marathon and Ultra Marathon once again celebrates being Singapore’s biggest night race with the exclusive preview of the New Balance 890s at the Roadshow.

Additional slots for the 10km and 21km category of Sundown Marathon were specially released after registrations were closed much earlier. Those were quickly snapped up, along with the 42km and 100km slots during the road show as queues formed on Raffles Green. This brings Sundown Marathon and Ultra-Marathon’s participation to all time high of nearly 27,000 runners.

Photo Credit Official Sundown Photographer

Team FatBird, who have been tasked to assemble and train the Sundown Pacers/Ambassadors were on location to take nearly 80 runners from the public on a scenic 5km run along the riverside and Marina Bay Sands vicinity. It was also the first time that the Sundown Ambassadors were presented to the media as well as runners, and the run offered a good opportunity for pacers and pacees to run along and get to know one another better, as well as receive tips on how to prepare for the eventual night race.

There were many friends and supporters who did not managed to register (because they were full within one night of opening), but did pop over anyway to show their support and to soak in the Sundown atmosphere. The weather was nice as we the group ran from light to dusk, emerging from the substation to the Raffles Green to a fitting end to what can only be the start of a great Sundown Marathon in the making.

5km Sundown Ambassador Run @ Roadshow
FatBird Photo Slideshow

The New Balance 890, the latest neutral cushioning trainers from New Balance Singapore were trialed and showcased during the run, with quite a number of good responses with regards to the cushioning, the 'springy' feeling due to the energy-return properties, as well as a more 'snug' and soft feel of the whole wear experience. The 5km runners were amply rewarded with isotonic drinks, bananas and an Sundown 2011 event tee-shirt post-run.

Along the way, there were a number of participants who were keen to do some serious marathon training to prepare early such that they will enjoy a good race on May 28. Operations Manager Alan Choong, 42, a virgin marathoner at Sundown 2011 chirped, “I came here to meet more friends who share the same interest so that I can run with some of them on race day. The run today was very enjoyable and I would love to join more of such runs in future.”

Official Sundown Marathon Photos

Team FatBird Facebook Photo Gallery

Related Posts with Thumbnails

Friday, March 25, 2011

RT1100 Eye Candy

The recent Race Trainer model 1100 from New Balance not only looks better, it runs much better too :) When I first put it on, the D width was a tad narrow for my normal 9.5 size, which resulted in me getting a half size larger. I could already feel the plush mid-foot cushion when trying out on the treadmill at the NB shop.

I had to give the black/pink colour version a go since I don't really have such a combination in my running shoe cabinet. During my 13km test-drive around the neighborhood, I felt that there were a number of runners looking at my feet....must be those striking colours lah; don't think they are admiring my running gait...haha.

I did my usual test routine and found them comfortable for me as a neutral runner, with better response than the previous RT model. Averaging 5:10-5:20min/km for most of the way, I did not feel much heat generated. The RT1100 are light and I felt good running in them. Although it was only an initial short run, I could feel its potential for at least a good full marathon...the only slight nag was this little pinch on my last toe, although there was no real pain arising. Overall, a cushy, comfy, commendable race trainer coming from NB Japan.

Related Posts with Thumbnails

Thursday, March 03, 2011

Let's Make Excellent Happen

I like this new tagline from New Balance for their new range of RevLite running shoes.

NB RevLite Scale Test

After my earlier review of the NB1190, I had the opportunity to take the NB890 neutral trainer for a few spins over distances of 7km-21km. They were light, responsive and had good mid-foot cushion support. The toe-box area was snug compared with earlier versions of NB shoes. You can get more technical information and specs HERE! I am just waiting to lay my hands, I mean feet, on all those nice colours in the range :)

New Balance RevLite newest models

Related Posts with Thumbnails

Nike LunarElite2+: First Impressions

LunarElite+2 Profile: Source Nike Singapore

I have not tried some of the new Nike shoes since my last review of the inaugural LunarGlide+ series. Recently, I managed to find time to an invitation for a test-drive of Nike's latest LunarElite2+. Since it will not be fair to review any shoe with just 1-2 short runs, I can only provide my 'First Impressions' of the LunarElite2+.

A short briefing on the technicals of the shoe was given to the few of us, before we joined the Nike Run Club for a 5km run around the city fringes of Orchard Road.

Compared with its predecessor, the latest LunarElite+ is lighter (at 10Oz for Mens US10), more flexible and better fitting. It kept the same responsive cushioning in Dynamic Support System, upper secure fit with Flywire technology and flex grooves along the bottom of the shoe for increased flexibility and smoother heel-toe transition.

The shoes flexed well on the mid-foot region, giving it the softer feel than its predecessor, although I still find it a tad stiff compared with neutral cushioned trainers. The LunarElite+2 professes to give a balance of light feel, responsiveness, mid-foot cushion, less heel and reasonable breath-ability. While the narrower width did not bother me (in fact I felt it to be rather snug), it did affect some of the testers who needed a wider fit for the asian feet.

I found that the heel and overall shoe-drop was lower, giving a closer-to-ground feeling, providing quite a decent ride. I would have liked it to be more responsive (like the LunarGlide) since the shoe aspires to be more a performance trainer.

Overall, this is a lighter, softer shoe than some its predecessor and the LunarEclipse+. The arch wrap provided a snug fit for me, with the low heel just good enough to waste the extra weight. Mid-foot cushioning was ample, but could do with more responsiveness if I were to bring this baby for longer rides. As they say, 'the proof of the pudding is in the eating'...more will be revealed as the LunarElite+2 are taken on longer distances and training runs.

Related Posts with Thumbnails

Wednesday, March 02, 2011

I Ran, I Climbed, I Survived!

The NTUC OMB Challenge, a 10km run, followed by a 31-storey vertical climb up the NTUC Centre (One Marina Boulevard) was what attracted a bunch of 1,000 runners to take up this challenge. Together with another 1,000 10km and 5km runners, we were all excited to try out the unique format on what was a clear, sunny Sunday morning.

When we arrived at the NTUC Centre, the mass warm-up was about to start. It was nice to see many familiar faces, and time passed quickly with handshakes and pleasantries being exchanged. The 15min pre-race warm-up began to get the runners to loosen up and start their engines. The crowd was not too large, giving a cozy, relaxed atmosphere and feel....nice.

The OMB Challenge, which many of us were participating in, was started first. The initial pace was conservative as the runners manouvred into space...and there was ample of it. I followed the lady runners a bit, and then traded places with some friends, as we strode along Raffles Avenue though the F1 Pit Building. The first few km at 4:30min/km was a tad fast, and I quickly dropped back to 4:40min/km to conserve...haha. The ladies were doing great as they pulled away further to the front. The Kallang Riverside presented some nice views as we reached the mid-point, with some of the photographers stationed there taking pics of the scenery as well as runners :)

The water points were well spread out and ample, but could do better with some isotonic drinks in some of the stations. They were well manned with the volunteers holding out water for the runners, at the same time cheering for us. There were the small pockets of runspirators (mainly gals) along the way cheering their hearts out....kudos to their encouraging spirits, esp. under the hot morning sun. By the 8km mark, we were back to F1 Pit Building, and pace has averaged at 4:45min/km. The calves were feeling ok, but needed to save the quads for the stairs later on.

Reached the 10km mark in about 46min+, happy that I didn't feel too fatigued at that point. Followed the front runners to take a walk break and drink before going for the 'Ultimate Challenge', the one we all came here for. The first 10 flights were already causing people to pant and climb slowly. The stairwell was ventilated at certain points with small blowers, but the exit doors could be left open for even better ventilation as well as provide a resting place for runners who wish to slow down for others to overtake. The heat in that enclosed space posed an additional challenge. By the 15th storey, I was wasted...haha.

A few of the running friends who had strong quads and were great stair-climbers soon caught up. The top few lady runners were going for the final standings push, and they gave their all in that run up. After allowing a few more runners to overtake, I finally reached the top, quite unexpectedly (since I was not in the right frame of mind to count by then). As I emerged out into the finish line, I felt then that the windy rooftop was the best thing next to sliced bread...heavenly. Many deep breaths and congratulatory handshakes later, we proceeded down the building (using the elevators of course) to collect our well-deserved finisher tees and goodie bags. There were fruits and blue-coloured water (isotonic drinks hehe) provided to the delight of the runners. With time left on our hands, we went to cheer and support the other runners coming in and had a great time photo-taking and chatting about this unique race experience.

Overall, we felt that the race was well organized and provided a cozy and friendly atmosphere, something we do not often get at the larger races. The OMB Run+Vertical Climb was definitely interesting and challenging. Although a few runners mentioned they have had enough of stairs for a while, a few others were hoping for more storeys to be piled on next time...GOSH. I am sure next year's event will attract even more to the OMB Challenge as it did this first time around, and when that happens, more will need to be done to the vertical climb portion to accommodate this growing number of enthusiasts.

I Ran, I Climbed, I Survived!

Facebook Photos: DO, AC Leong, Dave Poh, Tan Kim Lai
Official Results: Mens Open

Related Posts with Thumbnails