Posts tagged “Sport

Chrissie Wellington, You will be missed !!

TYR poster

TYR poster

I was shocked when I read on my timeline that Lady Chrissie is retiring / giving up on Ironman a couple of days ago.. to me she was someone that shook the world of Ironman and kinda made it more inspiring to complete an Ironman event, Ironman event it self is famous as it is and there are so many popping out everywhere.. I bet once I drop Chrissie’s name on any triathlete they would know who she is.

Who would not notice her trademark smiles, determination and passion, She has relentlessly promoted this sports and many girls/women took notice of Ironman/Triathlon in the past few years, to me she has this aura of happiness around her when she races or when she speaks to people (not that I have met her but through photographs and video). I am writing this post because she will be dearly missed by lots of girls and guys out there, she gave inspiration to many as she is a role model and idol for most of us.  Who is gonna reign on her spot this time.

On her website Wellington wrote: “Over the past 12 months I have had time to reflect and think, about my past and, of course, also of my future. Being a professional ironman athlete has been one of the greatest experiences of my life. I have achieved more than I could have ever imagined, and been so fortunate to travel to some beautiful places, compete against the best in the world, and forge many lasting friendships. Those life-changing experiences and memories will stay with me forever.

As an athlete I sought ‘the perfect race’. That race within myself where I dug to the depths mentally and physically, and that hard-fought race with my competitors. The World Ironman Championships in 2011 was the icing on the cake for me as an athlete. It was my ‘perfect race’ and it ‘completed’ me.

My passion for the sport hasn’t waned, but my passion for new experiences and new challenges is what is now burning the most brightly. Hence, I have got to the point where I know that it is right for me to retire from professional ironman distance racing.”

To me Crowie and Natasha Badmann is my all time favourite athlete in the world of Ironman.


How to Swim Faster ? Part 2

this is the continuation of  “How to Swim Faster?”  from the first part.  If you just dropped in, please go to “How to Swim Faster” Part 1

Principle #4: Swimming More on Your Sides

The first way to improve propulsion is to roll more from side to side with each arm stroke. Rolling more on your sides allows you to better engage the large back muscles in addition to the shoulder muscles. However, spending more time on your side  is unusual at first and needs some getting used to.

Principle #5: Using Your Core

This is another secret of how to swim faster. You should engage the large back, hip and torso muscles while rolling from side to side. The synergy between your core muscles and arm muscles allows you to apply more force to your swim stroke.

It is a little bit like a baseball pitcher when he throws the ball: first his body twists backward, then his hips initiate a rotation forward which is channeled through his upper body into his shoulder, arm, hand and finally into the ball, with an acceleration at each step.

Once you have integrated this technique, you will be able to swim longer and faster and tire less quickly, as your core muscles have more endurance than the ones in your shoulders and arms.

Principle #6: Anchoring Your Arms

This is the last piece of the puzzle on how to swim faster with less effort. Before applying any force on your propulsive arm, you need to make sure that your hand and forearm are aligned and facing backward. You can then effectively move your arm backward like big paddle.

This swimming technique is often called the “high elbow catch” in the freestyle stroke because you need to keep your elbow high in relationship to your wrist to be able to successfully do this.

Hope you have enjoyed the two part series of the “How to Swim Faster”


How to swim faster? Part 1

Swimming Faster is a fascination for many,  I just finished a swim yesterday after a month of no activity due to my feet injury and also because race season is over. I felt funny not to train after so long but I am sure definitely  out of breath swimming my usual 3 x 500m in the pool yesterday (no more races till 2013)

I have always wondered how to swim faster, Have you been wondering how to swim faster for months or even years without ever finding a satisfactory answer? If this is the case, well, you are in good company.

This article by enjoy-swimming.com describes six principles that will allow you to swim faster without becoming exhausted too quickly.

Swimming Smarter not Harder

For many coaches, swimming faster is the result of gradually increasing the length and intensity of swimming workouts so that the general fitness level increases.

While conditioning has its place, this is not all there is about how to swim faster, because swimming is a very technical sport. There are a few gifted swimmers that instinctively learn how to move efficiently in the water. Given enough time and practice, they will always improve. (this for me have not been the case..but I believe so)

But most of us only have a vague sense about our efficiency in the water. Remember, we are land animals! Because of this, swimming lots of lengths will often only make our bad habits more permanent, while our swimming technique only improves slowly or even not at all.

So what do we need to do? In fact, to learn how to swim faster and better with less effort, we need to swim smarter, not harder. Specifically, we need to work on two facets of our technique:

  1. We need to decrease drag in the water.
  2. We need to improve propulsion in the water.

Decreasing Drag

The importance of swimming with the least amount of drag is often neglected. However, this is an area where we can greatly improve our efficiency in the water.

Water is much more dense than air. Drag in the water increases by the square of the speed at which we swim. So there is quickly an upper limit on how much force we can apply against the water to increase our speed.

On the other hand, reducing drag requires SKILLS rather than force. So there’s a lot of room for improvement there. That’s why it should be the top priority of learning how to swim faster.

Principle #1: Improving Your Balance

The first and most efficient way to decrease drag is to improve your balance. This means that you try to stay as horizontal as possible while moving through the water. When you do this, you disrupt the least amount of water molecules on your path, which translates into reduced drag.

As an example, while swimming freestyle, swimmers often lift their head to breathe or look ahead. When they do this, they lose balance and their hips and legs drop. Their body is less streamlined and generates more drag while moving through the water. Additionally, they need to kick harder to keep those legs up. Needless to say, a lot of energy is wasted while doing this.

Note that being as horizontal as possible is especially important for the freestyle and backstroke. For the breaststroke and butterfly, things are a little bit different because a body undulation occurs during the stroke cycle.

Principle #2: Swimming Taller

The next way to decrease drag is to make yourself as tall as possible in the water. The theory behind this is that for the same mass, a long tapered object moving through the water creates less turbulence than a short compact object. In fact this principle has been used by naval engineers since hundreds of years.  I have learned to walk tall but I believe this

To swim taller in the freestyle stroke, you enter your recovering arm early in the water once it has passed your head. You also make sure to completely extend your recovering arm forward underwater before starting the down sweep and catch.

Principle #3: Compact and Efficient Kick

In world-class front crawl swimmers, the kick contributes for up to 10% of propulsion, while the arm stroke contributes for the rest. So an efficient kick is important for fast swimming, but less than what is commonly believed.

What is equally important is a compact kick, meaning that it should neither break the water surface nor move too low below the body line. Otherwise unnecessary drag is created which will only slow you down.

Improving Propulsion

Once you have reduced drag to a minimum, you can work on improving your propulsion. Again, this is mainly done by improving your swim stroke mechanics, not by building bigger muscles.

 

to be continues in the part 2…


HomeTeamNS New Balance Real Run 2012 Review

90% Mental 100% Real… oh it was REAL alright, 21st Oct marks the date for the Home Team NS RealRun.

The weather was forgiving and there was a slight drizzle and cloudy overcast for a couple of hours

The road closure starts at 6am from Changi road and if you didnt know it was a 3km walk from the nearest carpark , or from from where I have parked, even with a media vehicle pass, I was barred from going in (I didnt see a problem as I am not the masses and it was only going to be one vehicle going in and it does not disrupt the race)  So walk I did.. rules are rules

The long walk in …if you notice the lamp post in the pic it was the long stretch in to the Start point.

While I was walking in , 21k top leading runner was on the run on the opposite side.

While walking in also I saw Shan running his 21k with a very good pace …

and after 20mins, I was still walking .. if you notice the amount of runners heading to the start matches the amount of runners coming out, It was due to the organisers stopped the shuttle bus service from 6.15am already.. BAD BAD BAD Organizing .. I was hoping to catch the shuttle bus while walking in but really no luck.  (There is a reason why Sundown organizers moved out from this place) cause runners who come after road closure have to walked all the way in. .. and then OUT !

While walking in, I could hear all the boo-boos of the organisers this year, what is happening guys ? Last year was alright .. but you sure did SCREWD UP your system this time.

Heard something about extension of the race pack collection (people not being notified) that is why they have extension for those that have not collected their racepack. (Get your act together guys)

Let’s Make Excellent Happen (New Balance) There was a small expo going on where New Balance showcase their shoes and even have a photo competition all you have to do is go into Instagram and tag your photo #NewBalanceSG (my submission is the one below)

The Race started on time for both category (very prompt I have to say) . The mood created by the DJ and the emcee was very good as music was blasting and pumping the atmosphere this morning. Runners was all PSYched up with GANGNAM style playing as well.

Pretty much a strong crowd as always for Real Run as there are many runners that would love to transition to trail but still wondering if they should. I say DO IT !!

Anyway check out the below video if today winning runner.

Video of the Winning Runner crossing the Line

Winner of 21k

Check out the winner of the 21k for this year, He did the run in only 1hr, truly that is an insane speed.. if you notice the video below, the clocked changed to 7mins, something sure did went crazy.. I also heard many problems with the 10k timing.

The following video is the previous year winner, which won the event at a time of 1hr 08min, This new winner BLEW him by 8 mins

Saw a couple of friends along the way.

Anica and Mag (hubbie was running his first 10k)

Zu and Jun (A couple runs together stays together)

J aka GrannyFartB0X  and gang

Ed and Gis (Another lovely couple team)

As for me I have me and myself to run with.. #Foreveralone

Oh not forgetting the REAL RUN MEDAL

So before I head off, here is my 2cent worth of Home TeamNS New Balance Real Run 2012

Highlights

  1. The water point was adequate ( Despite no cheering squad the water boys was high spirited, THANK YOU GUYS)
  2. The new route was great
  3. Medal was pretty impressive (Keep up the good work guys)

Lowlights

  1. Water ponding along the route (can’t be help as there was heavy rain the day before)
  2. Medal and finisher T collection was brought out of the hall and into open.
  3. Shuttle Bus system was not adequate and timing should be fix to later
  4. Heard from J, that there was a time keeping problem (I can’t confirm on this) but I am sure the time clock screwed up, just check my video till the end.

Till then … enjoy your races everyone. See you at the next race

As I always say “Train Hard, Race Harder”


HomeTeamNS New Balance Real Run Race Pack Review

Singapore Runners will know that this weekend on the 21st, there will be three running event held concurrently  Real Run by HomeTeamNS, Nike Run and the Passion North Run.

Guess which one I will be attending… DUH !!

Last year I also have attended this run as the organisers invited me over. It was a blast and I have done Real Run for 4 years in row, for me running Real Run is like a transition from Road to Trail minus the hard core tree roots and stuff.

Real Run has gravel and sand and road all thrown into the course. So I can tell you that if you are running a 50min 10k don’t expect it to be the same.

Here is my review on the Race Pack as usual

Stuff that is (erm) Recyclable

  1.  Soleus 15% discount voucher
  2. New Balance 25% voucher
  3. Something that looked like a CONDOM BOX (YOSH !!!!) but then looking at it carefully it was a deck of cards on being a good Dad by DADS4Life.
  4. Some Citibank card form
  5. 100plus promotion , advert .. etc..etc..

Stuff That We can Use

  1. Jacob Biscuit
  2. some Muscular Balm (really stink smelled strong)
  3. Rollerball pen that has a scroll like message in the centre
  4. whats a Pen to write on but a NOTEPAD , so thoughtful of them.

Well there you have it whats inside my REAL RUN goodie bag.  (OH WAIT)

I was given a NB Shirt which I will adorn on that day, am not showing it now cause its not the official RealRun Tshirt.

Good luck all you runners and gimme a pat when you see me.

I am only running 10k cause of my injury.


The North Face 100

Last weekend was crazy,It was the week for Ironman World championship and the TNF100 race which was held on the 13th of October, surely I did not participated for Kona but I sure did run for the TNF100.

My blog post held a poll a week before to see if my readers would run if they were injured. So I was waiting for the result to see if I were to run for this race and the results were as below, Thank you all for voting

I was surprise that the “No” result jumped 20% in the last two days, but luckily it did not deter me from running, but if it was the majority, I would just be the official photographer on that day watching my training buddies run their trail run. So here I am at the starting line with the 25k runners

The amount of trail runners sure have increased over the years

Benny New Kicks (he got it only 3 days before) but hey its a Saucony TR Kinvara

We before the run, looking fresh and carrying the required water weight. 1.5l for 25km run. Just so you know I did not train at all or even run for over a month  for this 25km so please do not laugh at my finishing timing.

I love the trails as it gives challenges and not just a straight monotonous road, trails enables us to concentrate on what is below our feet, if you switch off for 10 sec you surely gonna trip and fall. My injury was cause I was running at speed and a root was protruding from the ground and my feet his 90degrees and I heard a loud crack and it have not recovered ever since.

the 25k route was a little different from last year but it still had the same elements of torturing us through the hot sun with the open field every year pictured here, I call it the Energy Lab of Macritchie, If you do watch Ironman World Championship, you would know about the infamous Energy Lab where there is no cover from the sun and just plain open road but in this case open field.

(THE ENERGY LAB OF MACRITCHIE)

Well I notice that I was trying to catch up at KM12 if you look at the endomondo map carefully, It was the fastest lap of the day, I told my self if only I could just do a negative split, but it never happened.

Nevertheless we all finished in good time (except for me) but I do not feel disheartened cause it was just 30min slower than last year.

No doubt my 100km races have all been shelved, I will still press on and start my clocking my mileage once my foot is healed. So far its 80% healed. Can’t wait to pound the street again (trails included)

Special shout out to Jayve for winning 3rd Place in her category.of the TNF15k Awesome much … see ya in the trails.

(Pic of J. taken from her FB page)

Till next year again. I have rounded the boys to participate the 50km and I hope they will do it.

If you want to know your results please visit http://www.digitalracesolutions.com.sg/results/northface100_2012/index.html

or just wanting to browse for hot bods and hot babes in trail gears do check out the TNF Facebook page


The North Face 100 Race Pack

The North Face 100® wants you to run further than you ever have in 2012!

 

(Pic courtesy of TheNorthFace100.com.sg)


Promoting the genuine spirit of exploration since its kick-start in 2008, The North Face 100® has become the most well-received and anticipated distance trail running series of seven Asia Pacific countries in its fifth year: Thailand, Taiwan, Philippines, China, Australia, Singapore and Japan. Whether you are an aspiring trail running beginner or a seasoned racer looking for new challenges, unparalleled experience is offered in each competition of this region’s largest trail running series.

Break all boundaries and Never Stop ExploringTM.

Singapore 13 Oct 2012
Other Asia-Pacific Country/Area
Feb 03-05 Thailand
Apr 15 Taiwan
Apr 20-21
Philippines
May 12 China
May 19-20 Australia
May 19-21 Ultra Trail Mt. Fuji
US Endurance Events
May 05-06 Bear Mountain, NY – Trail
Jun 02-03 Washington DC – Trail
Sep 15-16 Madison, WI – Trail
Oct 13-14 Atlanta, GA – Trail
Nov 17 Kansas City, MO – Road
Dec 01-02 San Francisco, CA – Trail

Race Pack Collection at Novena: Velocity Mall

As usual the race pack collection is held one week before the race, and as usual I will give my low down on the goodies given to participants. After my usual weekend swim I headed down to Novena at about 2pm hoping that there wont be any crowd and true enough there wasn’t any.

The North Face

If you notice the registration staff is wearing the ultra bright neon green race t. I was asking the guy in the pic, lets swap T when he is done cause I wanted the neon green cause I do run a fair bit in the night and it would be very helpful for me. (the color reminds me of Saucony ViziPro)

The North Face

This was the first time, the race map was printed full page on the race booklet, if you can see the person holding it. 100k, 50k, 25k and the 15k all clearly indicated in it. Not sure how accurate it would be.

So whats in the Bag you ask ?

  1. Menshealth Magazine
  2. Suunto brochures
  3. Active discount vouchers
  4. SFI Warehouse brochure
  5. TNF100 race directory
  6. TNF100 race course Map

The North Face

Useful stuff

  1. Gu Chomps
  2. Active muscle rub
  3. Jacob “Original” biscuit
  4. Viartril-S 500 capsules
  5. 2 Toms Blister prevention
  6. SingGourmet “Ready Made Rendang Sauce” (not what I expect in a TNF100 race pack)

The North Face

The only highlight of the race pack and saviour was the Running T and Race Bib, which I deem is pretty much decent.

Race Bib, 100km 50km, Ultra


Singapore Cold Storage Triathlon 2012 Post Race Review

The race is finally over, after skipping two run races, I finally did my triathlon after waiting for 4 weeks. That was how long it took my legs to feel better, Special shoutout to Team Triboys Ian Faria and his bro Chris for sending me this neat transition towel. Will be racing Escape from Alcatraz with them soon in the near future.  If you wanna hook up for training or racing with the boys you can search Instragam hashtag or on twitter for #teamtriboys and you will definitely see them handsome hunks. Once again thanks boys and see you guys soon.


If you guys didn’t know what happened, lemme clue you in before you laugh at my miserable time, I was training for my “North Face 50k which is held in October” and my feet accidentally ran over a tree root, it angled 90degrees with a very loud crack and that was into my 4k out of my 15k trail run (I finished the whole 15k in pain if you are wondering) It all just went downhill after that. I had my feet X-ray and Doc cleared me, some how or rather the pain still persist till today. All I could train for this Tri event was swim and bike.

So kingdom come came and went. It was good sunny morning on last Saturday. Met with many of the boys before the swim felt a bit humid but its all in the fun.  The swim leg got delayed

Swim Segment

Participant had to make two loop for the swim and so how did the swim went? it went something  like this.. choppy sea water,  got hit in the face on my first 100m with my goggles knocked off my face, water got into my eyes and it stings like mad… got grabbed, groped and whatever you can think of, but hey that is why they call it the “Washing Machine”, you don’t join a tri event to have silky smooth swimming pool water do ya?  came out of the first loop and saw my watch for the first 750m, did a 16min but I nearly had a massive cramp when I was near to shore, I stop short of shore line and my legs couldn’t feel the ground, so I was curling my leg to feel ground and with that awkward leg position I nearly had a muscle pull on my calf, you know those massive super cramp.  Did not want to put myself in danger and don’t think I can afford a big cramp to my calf on the second loop. I didn’t kick as much on the second lap and I swam cautiously and closely to the line just in case my leg cramps up. Swim time: 43min

Bike Segment

Bike leg is always fun, went into T1 and took my gel and first time I did not place my shoe clipped ready on my bike for fast transitioning as this was a two week old shoe, have not put enough mileage into them shoes yet. Bike loop was an insane six loop over ECP with many dangerous turns (saw a couple of people bleeding pretty badly and bandaged up) … Road Marshal was shouting like crazy saying DANGER .. BIG GROUP AHEAD GO SLOW (er… its a race.. GO SLOW??) well I do hope the revamp the bike segment next time for a better and safer riding race. I was looking at my bike meter and it went like 32 – 34avg that was all I wanted nothing more nothing less and before my last lap I will usually take in some carbs for the run segment and guess what, silly me had to drop my packet of gel on the road, It was a decision for me to pick it up or leave it, I left it (was it a poor decision? I don’t know)  Bike Time: 1hr17min

Run Segment

Here comes the moment of truth, I told myself either I die running or I walked to the end in my run segment. went in T2, grabbed my headband put on my shoes, went out running in less than 2min and boy I could (NOT) run, after leaving the run out, massive cramps came into my thigh and I know for sure that without run training it will definitely kill me. Its not that this is my first race.. I never felt cramps this bad before, I practically walked and hop myself for the first 2km or so.. What was I thinking.. four weeks and not even one training on my run.

Never let your head hang down. Never give up and sit down and grieve. Find another way. And don’t pray when it rains if you don’t pray when the sun shines. – Richard M. Nixon

On the 3k mark, a familiar face came behind, tapped and passed me, It was Benny who was in one age group behind, he finally caught me in the run segment (all things going through my head now, thinking of stopping and quitting the race as its going to be a real pathetic race for sure) but I told my self #HTFU and keep going, and so I did.. yes the final run was terrible but I won’t let my head hang in shame. Yes it’s also the worst 10k time ever for me in my running career but I will not let it stop me. I will come back stronger (if my doc cleared me of any problems to my feet) Time: 1hr 17min

Well its the end of the race and I am glad all my buddies was here with me.  Not that I am proud of the time, but I sure finished it.. if your wondering yes the pain in my leg still persist. I am heading for an MRI this week. I wont let it damper my mood for me in the upcoming 2013 races that I have signed up for.

PS: word of advice, train before you go for a race. Dont be like stupid me.