Sunday, September 26, 2010

Where does running take you?!

Today a lot of people are enjoying Cam Sur running their full or half marathon...there are short-distance events either that make it cool too.

I haven't been running for the past weeks...but so committed to get back to training hopefully for another full marathon.

Honestly, I am delayed preparing. But something motivates me to take up another marathon. And I promise to get back better after my brother's wedding.

Kassy, one of my batchmates in TBR Dream Marathon takes her running adventure to the next level.
On December 5, 2010, she will be running full marathon in Standard Chartered Singapore event for the Maple Tree foundation. Click here for details.

After learning about this...I feel excited for Kassy because not all people do this act of kindness.

I really admire her effort in doing her passion and helping others at the same time. I wish a lot of us could the same. This is humongous job. I can imagine how difficult is the legwork organizing this kind of activities.
I could extend however small contributions to Kassy and take my running a little further. So hubby and I decided to contribute 1 peso per km of our mileage for the year for Kassy's cause.

Kassy can monitor our pledges' progress through dailymile. Amount corresponding to accumulated mileage will be sent to Kassy on Nov 15.
This is one of my fave pix of Kassy during our last TBR DM grabbed from her FB.

How about you? Would you like to spare 1 peso per km of your running mileage? We can help Kassy raised the target amount for the foundation.  Click here for details.

See you guys on the road!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Nutrition...exciting discoveries

I always believe that nutrition and active lifestyle go hand in hand....that is why I seldom drink carbonated and alcoholic drinks, binge on junk food or with my favorite treats and etc....I learned all about proper nutrition-way back my infertily and pregnancy years. The reason why I stayed in this course of living a healty diet is to allow me cope up with the demands of endurance sport and motherhood.
I will update my Runner's Recipe page for my recent finds on healthy food and nutrition, including those  previous recipe in case I have made some variants that still taste great and gets approval from my picky eating kids.

Here are my recent finds:
  1. I was reading through Jaymie's blog when I came across this article-"Low chocolate fat for recovery". Yesterday on our 5k tempo, my post run fuel is the chocolate soya milk. I was actually expecting today a sore calf muscles- which often happens with my running workout. Today, I am not feeling anything. I just find it unsual considering yesterday afternoon we were malling at the Shang for about 5 hours whew! Perhaps the bull runner and the webMD is right. I am excited to run again because of the idea of running pain-free. I must confirm this with more data points :D My choice is Soyfresh chocolate milk- because I think I am lactose intolerant. So if you're a runner, rider, swimmer or you lift weights- post workout try this. And you may want to share  how it worked for you.
  2. I am always on the hunt for high fiber pasta everytime I am on the grocery...because this is a good source for complex carbo. Complex carbo are the smart choice for runner because it takes longer to convert to glucose and are stored as glycogen in the muscles which is put to good use during the demands of endurance training or race. Consistent training demands more glycogen reserves for better performance. Last year, I discovered that the whole wheat pasta also taste good (see my tuna arrabiata in my Runner's Recipe). The other day, I discovered about Oat's fiber spaghetti. This lunch, we tried it with tomato based sauce and it did OK with the kids. They did not notice that I am using a different type of spaghetti.  I am still wondering if there were other people cooking this stuff and how it work. If you happen to try this let me know how did you like it. So far my tummy isn't grumpy. :D
  3. I discovered recently how to make my kids eat vegetable. A fruity vegetable salad made the trick. I'll post the recipe in my Runner's Recipe page.
Happy eating!

Friday, September 17, 2010

Air Climber - is it a good cross training equipment for the runners?

Photo courtesy of google images
I first saw this airclimber equipment from my mother. My mom is currently on a mission to lose weight and be fit. I guess the hospitalization that happened a year ago traumatized her- making her swear to live healthy.

The airclimber is actually a stepper- as you see on the photo it has two pedals, you fill it with air (the plastic component beneath the pedal) and in a few seconds you have an exercise equipment. It comes along with a resistance band that you could use for arms/back workout and a DVD exercise program led by Brenda DyGraf.

When I first saw it. I was wondering if it's a good alternative for a treadmill. You see, I cannot afford to buy it....even the manual version. It's just expensive and occupies ample of space. I swear that this year, I'll be as frugal and minimalist. And anything that will not add value to me nor I have doubts of functionality- I am not buying nor will it ever occupy space in our small abode.

But by just looking at it, I have serious doubt if it will work up a muscle. I gave it a try. Set the resistance dial to the highest level 5 (well, honestly I feel that maybe working on it is peanuts eh!) and try the "Super 7-pump" program....the video is very motivating, you see guys and gals displaying their ripped abs while using the equipment.  The exercise video is complete, it will assist you from warm-up through cool down.

As I progressed with my workout, I realized that  piece of equipment had my muscle working so hard...maybe I have underestimated the resistance dial.  The exercise video is also simple to see I am not good in dancing, so aerobic exercise is really not a very welcoming idea....but Brenda DyGraf routine takes only awhile to follow. :D not bad eh!
I was literally sweating like a pig after the 20 minutes of workout. The super 7 pump exercise program helps me exercise my biceps, triceps, back, lats, abs, glutes, and calf.

Of course after that rigorous exercise and even if I was a little convince- I did not buy.
The price is 3750 pesos in SM Naga. I am not sure if it's practical to buy it.

We went back to Cavite and for quite awhile, the AirClimber- was left to oblivion.

Then, sometime July in one of our regular visit to the kids' pedia in Makita Med - we happened to drop by Landmark. And we saw the AirClimber sold at 2500 pesos (1000 off eh!).
Then I started to ask if this piece of equipment is indeed a good cross training equipment for runners?
My husband (who feels guilty for not accompanying me on my weekend runs) encourage me to buy it.
In other words we leave Landmark with that piece of equipment.
I have already tried all the exercise program in the DVD and my favorite is the Super 7-Pump, Abs Airtight, Burn & Firm.
I was hooked for three weeks.
Afterwards, the ripped abs on video- doesn't excite me anymore.
Even the idea of the  Rexona Run didn't ignite my interest to go on training.

Come race day- I lasted 2:45 to finish the 21km race.

Weeks past, there were lots of "major-major" reason why I can't train- Yaya gone away, heavy traffic along Governor's drive (due to endless road construction) etc....etc....So after so much contemplation I went back to Air Climber two weeks ago at 2x a week interval.
This time, I combined the Abs Airtight and Burn & Firm in one session- giving me a helluva workout of 30 mins...almost equivalent to 5K or less running time....I feel better but have adjusted the resistance dial to level 3 and 5 from time to time (LOL!).

Overall, the AirClimber is simple workout- it will make you sweat, burn calorie, work on your muscle (if you will follow the correct form). It will perhaps help lose weight (as I noticed from my Mom's progress).
As for me, it probably helped maintain my weight- so even if I haven't been running for awhile nothing changed.
However, it did not increase my appetite compared when I am running outdoors.

My conclusion is the AirClimber cannot replace the needed training of a runner.....a runner's workout is to run. And as much as possible- run outside.
Though, it can provide an alternative light to moderate cross training workout (even if the resistance dial is set to level 5), priced at 2500 pesos- I guess this will be a good piece of just need tons of courage and discipline to do the workout- over and over and over and over again!

P.S. This piece will bore experienced fitness enthusiast.  This is highly recommended for beginners (like my mom hehehe).

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Back to Basics

Lately when some of my non-running friends or colleague approached me and tell me like something any of these lines:
"You are amazing! You live such an active life."
Or "How did you finished the hurdles of 42 km?"
And "How can you keep on running?"

Honestly, those kind of question left me tongue tied.

I feel guilty. Because, the past three months I haven't been running the way I used to. For them I still look like an active runner.

To answer those questions....let me try to analyze and respond appropriately.
  •  Active Life- Duh! I guess this one comes naturally if you are a mother of two, a wife, working and juggling this so called "identity" of yours expressed in hobbies. You ought to be constantly on the move, not to mention the endless "chores"- that in itself is an activity and there's a lot of it.
  • The full mary- 42.195 km. I finished it once....hmmm I don't know if I can still manage a 16 week training. Or if the performance is repeatable. I still asked myself how did I do it. Perhaps, I'll call myself delusional if there were no evidence I did it.
  • Lastly- keep on running? The truth is I can't keep on running....I walk when I feel there's a need to walk. I am not ashamed to do it...yet, I still call myself a runner.
Interestingly, this question when a  newbie or non-runner ask- left me with my mouth wide open. "Any strategy? Tips?"

How will I answer that? I am not so technical- for tips, I would usually refer them to the Bald Runner, who has the collection of technical know how in running specially ultra running, and theres the Bull Runner and These are really the passionate people whom I consider the Philippine icons in the running community.
      Sometimes, I feel sad because it looks like I cannot contribute to this excited runner or non-runner. But what can I do...I do not have strategy!

I learned running from my kids...if you have children- you can observe them, look at them closely.
They run to their heart's delight....they stopped when in need of drink. They will continue until they are tired or hungry. When they are hungry they will seek food. And when exhausted they keep quite sometimes you won't noticed it- they're asleep or snore in some corner.

One of the greatest lesson I learned from my kids is to just enjoy running. Simple!

Everyday, I remind myself this....and each time....I am becoming wimpy!

If you're grown up- don't do like this boy does, running but doesn't look forward (LOL!)
There is a high chance of bumping other runner or worst structures....this boy got the comfort
of her mom who is just around the corner, watching.

When tired? try walking....there's no harm in doin'- proceed to hydrate....

Friday, September 10, 2010

Is it bye-bye GF405?

The past three months was a terrible struggle to squeezed in training time with various domestic issue.
Many mothers would agree that day time work, mothering, household management are difficult to juggle.Which resulted in my zero mileage. 

I can handle waking up early to do my runs....but I am so scared of the pestering dogs (hehehe these are the days I wish I lived in a posh village with tighter control over pets LOL!).

Today is holiday....our nearest option (despite waking up late) is island cove.
And I do hope this will be the start of a regular training.
Of course I wanted to know how my pace is doing after a prolonged off.
Thus, even if the plan is an easy run I decided to wear my GF405.

Suddenly the wristband took off! I was shocked my GF405 is just 17 months old.  I thought typical life is 24 months (perhaps battery life only). I wonder if this can be fixed? And where? My sister bought it abroad and I am not sure if it's still covered with warranty.

I am dismayed by the design of the wrist band that have a brittle material.
One thing is for sure- I am not buying another GF405.

I am disappointed of the wrist band - the design should be sturdy enough since it is intended for rigorous activity.
P.S. GPS is still working, but how can I use it?  Any idea?