How difficult would it be to stick to your training plan? For me, quite difficult!

As I have signed up again for this year’s Singapore Standard Chartered Marathon, I needed to prepare and commit to a training plan. Last year’s training wasn’t much a success but I was at least able to finish!

Going into my 3rd week in my plan, I have yet to follow strictly the dates and mileage. Let me just say that I know the importance of speed training but I skip that altogether. So today I have forced myself to do the recommended 14k but cheated on the speed. Tsi and I followed the 10k route of Tatakbo Ka Ba GMA race and then just did a couple of loops around Boni High St to meet the remaining 4k.

This has been the longest run I had in the past couple of months. I had been very delinquent during my month-long vacation in the US. And when I returned, haven’t jogged or ran anything beyond a respectable distance. And that sad fact was truly madly deeply felt TODAY! Very similar to my old ’76 corolla car while I was driving it around UP years ago. It creaked, whined, groaned!

From my condition this morning, I definitely need to, must, will, can, should stick to my training plan if I want to finish the full this december. I need to increase my runs and mileage!

How do you make yourself stick to your training plan? Are there runners like me who cannot follow the plan strictly?


I was very eager to go biking around Folsom. Jenn and Steve’s neighborhood is an ideal location for me.  It is a very quiet residential place with REI within walking distance and the Folsom Premium Outlets a few miles away AND they’ve got bike trails all over!  The downside is the trails are the paved asphalted ones not the rough terrain I’m used to back in Manila.  The upside?  Zero probability of any vehicular accident as trails are exclusive for bikers or joggers.  There are also specific bike lanes on roads everywhere so there’s no chance of a jeepney sidesweeping you. Di ko sila namimiss at all!

You can check out all the available Folsom bike trails here. Which I did the night before I biked and was able to do 3 trails while the rest was road biking.  Shempre naunahan na ako ng mga real roadies by then!

I was also excited to wear my Proud Pinay Mountainbiker jersey!  I was lucky enough to order one from PMTB.  So I debuted it around Folsom, wala lang!

This is me before hitting the trails.  It was cold at first but I warmed up after 10 minutes or so.  I borrowed the bike of Steve’s friend, still a bit big for me but I was able to manage. 



The rain didn’t slow down a lot of hardcore runners this morning for the ie8 Run at the Fort.  It had been raining steadily the past few days and it is almost guaranteed that it will be the same weather this morning during the ie8 Run.


Arriving at the Fort at past 5AM,  I am glad to see a huge crowd gathered.  A handful of my MS officemates were already there prepping for their run.  I was looking out for Chay,  who is the over-all lead for this fantastic event to wish her good luck.  (congrats Chay!)


Tsi and I decided to skip the 8 mile run and just walk the 2 mile race.  I have tried running in the rain during the La Salle and Milo runs and I’m not keen doing that again. 


I see a lot of parents with their kids doing the 2-miler.  There was even a funny moment when one little girl refused to walk any step further! We eventually saw the little girl happy and assumed that her mama got her a banana to pacify her.


After crossing the finish line,  we stayed long enough to watch officemates, busines partners and friends cross the finish line.  We skipped the raffle draw of the HP Mini-note (wonder who won?) and proceeded to Pancake House for breakfast.



Team Microsoft (give or take 4 runners)



More photos from Jojo’s facebook page …(no need to have account to access)



Next week I’m toying between Mizuno and joining the Clark Duathlon…

Can you believe April passed by without a single run from me? Probably been too busy committing myself to biking duties on sundays that’s why I missed all the fun runs.

Luckily, I was able to sign-up at the last minute, thanks to my officemate Roy who was kind and gracious enough to register for me at Alabang Town Center.

I was glad to learn that my cousins Tsi and Kuya Chito signed up as well. 

We arrived early and observed by the arrival of vehicles that this race wouldn’t be as jam-packed as the others we have experienced in Makati or the Fort. 

The race started about 10 minutes late.  Announcer kept on saying that they are still waiting for a few more people at the registration area.  And just when you thought they’ll kick-off the race,  the giant inflatable start/finish arch deflated!

I enjoyed the course though.  It’s such a delight running inside Ayala Alabang Village.  Every angle is eye-candy!  One beautiful house after another and the weather cooperated! It wasn’t hot at all.

Although water stations were situated every 2 kms or so, they ran out of cups!  The runner in front of me decided to drink from the spout of the water container.  Guess he was too thirsty!

I’m glad that there were plenty of marshalls telling you which way to go,  the signages were visible as well.  After the finish line though,  as you approach the water station, they were also out of cups!  This is really a major problem for back-of-the-pack finishers.  Might as well include in the fine print “for slow runners who are going to finish last, please bring your own water bottle or plastic cup as it is almost guaranteed we will run out due to poor planning and failure to anticipate and estimate how many are needed”.

Hay! Uhaw!

2009 TOF Along EDSA

Who would have thought we’d get to bike EDSA?  Well the Firefly Brigade did some magic.  This year’s 11th Tour of the Fireflies went through the country’s most popular (polluted din ba?) highway. 

This is my second year to join TOF and this tops last year in terms of experience.  I get to bike again with my cousins Kuya Alain and Tsi and my 10-yr-old niece Bea (Kuya Alain’s daughter).  Talo ako ni Bea because this is her 3rd TOF!

I also saw a lot of my biker friends enjoying the route.  It was extremely hot and humid but it didn’t dampen the estimated 6,000 bikers that day.  I wish this is similar to the critical mass rides being organized in the US or europe, they hold it every friday I think!  Wouldn’t it be great to get rid of EDSA of any form of motorized vehicle and only allow bikes once a week?  Haaaay dream on! 


33. TOF Start-Karen&Tsi

Tsi and I walking to the start. It was too crowded to bike.



With Kuya Alain and Bea 


79. Lunch Time

Chowtime with Tsi, Ana, Ethel and the gang

Day 1

Off we went to Subic last April 4-5 for the 2009 TLBF (Terry Larrazabal Bike Festival). None of us were participants but our love for biking was enough to bring ourselves (and our bikes!) to Subic to experience the big event.

Special thanks to my officemate Pia and his downhiller hubby Glenn for making reservations at Forest View. The villa is located in El Kabayo and we were pleasantly surprised of the good condition of the place. It has recently been renovated, and almost all the furniture, equipment, etc. look new. Our previous stay at Subic Homes a year ago was a disappointment so you can imagine my glee when I saw our great villa at Forest View .


Hanging out at Forest View. Ana, moi, Tsi, Danie (Martin’s pretty daughter), Ethel, Sarah, Jojo, Edmund. Martin took the photo.

The GPOA or General Plan of Attack for the rest of the day after check-in were to do our groceries, have a quick lunch, bike to the convention, attend Eric’s bday party at The Cliff (where he is staying with his whole family) and then cap the night with a free-for-all inuman/chikahan/patabaing-baboy session.

We were all eager to do the groceries at Subic Royal and thanks to Sarah and Tsi, managed to short list the food we need for an overnight stay. But we were all shocked how quickly we filled up that grocery cart! We were debating if we are really staying for 1 night or for the whole week with the amount of food we bought! One night lang pero malakas lang siguro kami kumain.

We had a quick lunch at Chow King where we saw Eric and family. Also saw good biker friends of my cousin Alain (Tsi’s older brother). Bud, Dennis and son, etc. are joining the XC race on Sunday. The outlet shops surrounding the restaurant within the Petron gasoline station caught our eyes as well. We promised to include that in our Sunday GPOA!

Back at the villa and after unloading the groceries, we’ve decided to bike to the convention. Tsi skipped this part, choosing to sleep instead because of an all-nighter the day before. Party hindi trabaho! Tons of friends were at the Subic Convention Center, we immediately saw our good friend Pat lugging his SLR. Naku marami na namang paktyurs for sure! We also saw Beth and the rest of the Pasig MTB Riders. TLBF is lucky to have repeat visits from International bikers Hans Rey, Brian Lopes and Jeff Jones. I was very lucky enough to have Hans “No Way” Rey sign my pink helmet! Talagang may “No Way” sa signature nya!


Souvenir pic at the convention center. Ethel, Jojo, Sarah, Eric, me, Edmund, Ana.

We asked Pat to join us and check out the 4X race. When we got there, the kids category was on-going. The races that we witnessed were very impressive. It’s great to see kids active at a young age. Hats-off to their supportive parents as well. J Afterwards we headed back to our villa but did a short detour to El Kabayo falls. Pat led the way as he is familiar with the trail. Reason being, he admitted he was there earlier that day. We took a couple of shots at the falls but those are using Pat’s cam. Still need to get them and post them here.

Later that night, we headed to Eric’s birthday bash at The Cliff. This is situated in Barrio Barretto, about 4kms outside Subic Bay, where the girlie bars used to be. The resort is very beautiful! There’s also a swimming pool if you don’t want to swim at the beach. When we got there, we were surprised to see a large group of party revellers. Turned out that Eric’s got relatives in Olongapo and there are 2 more birthday celebrants that night! One is Eric’s kid and the other is a relative. Firefly Brigade personalities Krx and Inoy were present too, nag-iinuman na! The group couldn’t stay too long at the party for Danie’s getting sleepy already. It’s unfortunate that when Wandie arrived biking all the way from Subic, we were about to leave.

The night didn’t end yet! It was just about to start. Edmund took care of the music, playing a great mix of New Wave songs on his iPod and ginormous speakers! Yes dinala pa nya! Sarah led the cooking duties and whipped up adobo and chicken wings as pulutan. She along with Jojo and Ethel led the draining of the Tequila bottle too. We were happy to see Adrian arrive, who was booked at a different resort. Happy because he’s got a bagful of ice for our irish liqueur! Weeee! O sige na nga, pati sa presence nya!

Day 2

The next day, only Martin, Ana, Tsi and I wanted to bike to the XC race at Hill 349. The rest of the group will take Jo’s van, masyado nalasing! Tsk tsk. It was about 18kms from El Kabayo to the race venue and majority of the time, we were going uphill! On our way, we saw the triathlon participants doing their bike leg and Tsi and I cheered for all the tri-girls we saw. Getting to the race venue is one tough activity! The road seemed endless and the heat of the sun isn’t helping at all. I was secretly wishing that there’s a Gatorade booth similar to the one outside the convention center we saw yesterday. When we finally arrived, first stop was the drinking station and u-lala! May Gatorade booth nga! We arrived just as the first place winner crossed the finish line. Ang galing! He didn’t look tired nor stretched beyond his limits.

We couldn’t stay long to watch the race because we have to check-out by lunch time. We still need to go back, good thing it would be easier now as the return trip is pure downhill except for the short climb to El Kabayo and to our villa. Saw Wandie again and he joined our small group on our way back. We bade goodbye to him somewhere around the JEST fork. After check-out, next in our GPOA would be to find out what other stuff we can see at the convention center and then do some shopping, have a snack at the Xtreme Xpresso Cafe before we all head home to Manila.

We were lucky to see the Trials competition happening at the convention. Jeff Jones, whom I thought was not competing but only doing an exhibition won first place. He was totally in a different league but I am happy with the performance of one fellow pinoy trials biker. That pinoy guy was able to balance himself more on his bike and do the required moves. Mabuhay ka!


Magaling ito! Not sure if this was the 2nd Placer



Another participant about to jump


Jeff Jones in action. Love his jones bike!










Trials participants and our souvenir pic with Jeff Jones. Check us out at the right portion of the photo 🙂

The competition, the shopping and the heat made everyone hungry so off we went for some pizza. Perfect way to cap our weekend and tackle the long ride home eh?


Finally Martin is in the pic!


Chalap chalap nito!!!

The group had a blast at TLBF. We couldn’t wait to return next year! Thanks to Martin for the photos!

Finally get to run a race with my co-workers! We always fail meeting up prior to the race so we end up not seeing each other after everyone crosses the finish line.

I met up with Yvie, Pinky (with hubby), Al, Sir Boy and Roy before the gun start. I was not able to see another officemate, Jamie before the race. Needed to see Roy because he registered Al and I.  Good thing I immediately saw them at the back of IMAX.

This time nobody brought a camera :(  But by some miracle, Al and Sir Boy brought along their mobile phones so had a Team Microsoft photo op before we started.  Mabuhay ka Al Ramone and Sir Boy!




Pinays in Action! (Pinky, Karen, Yvie)




Team Microsoft (Sir Boy,  Karen, Yvie, Pinky, Al)


The race started about 30-minutes late and I hear several people commenting about it.  The sun was up so the more we get delayed, the more punishing it would be.  When it did start, the 10k and 5k runners started at the same time.  I observed a couple of fast runners trying to weave in and out of the thick pack.  I wonder how they did?

The 10k runners need to run the route 4 times.  Repeating the route several times is my least favorite.  I really prefer one big loop because you don’t see the view over and over again.  Sir Boy was suggesting that we should not read all the signages around MOA so that when we pass by the same area, we have something new to read or look at. Pwede!

We finished almost at the same time.  Pinky was doing her first 10k, congratulations amiga! We wanted to celebrate by having breakfast but Sir Boy and Pinky had to beg off.  Yvie, Al and I decided to push thru and spent a quick breakfast at Mc Donald’s.

See you in the next races!  Oberenawt!