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Subic Seven

Monday, 29 December 2008  |  Bullish Insights

Just got back from Subic with the hubby, kids, and my side of the family.  We spent three full days of lounging around at the beach, eating to our stomach’s delight, and enjoying each other’s company.  

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{ 7 SIBLINGS }

With my Dad’s recent passing, we thought that the first Christmas without Dad would be most difficult for my Mom, so we decided to bring her out to Subic.  We are seven siblings—2 of whom are out of town—so the five of us from Manila packed our bags, along with our families or girlfriends, for some rest, relaxation, and a long-delayed family trip.

{ 7 KM }

Of course, hubby and I packed our running gear too.

We were like empty nesters on the first night as the kids chose to sleep over with their cousins.  This, however, gave us the opportunity to run together early the following morning without worrying about them.

At 6:15 a.m., we stepped out of our hotel, Subic Yacht Club, and faced the chilly breeze near the dock behind our hotel.  We warmed up with a light jog along the sidewalk of the main road, Rizal Highway, to avoid the few cars that were cruising on the roads.  In hindsight, I don’t know what would’ve been a better choice: running on the road and risking death, or having to run through that sidewalk comprised of slabs of concrete connected to each other with holes in between each one, which left us staring down at our feet throughout the run to avoid stepping into a hole.

After a few kilometers, we made a left on Binictican Drive towards Subic Homes where the rest of the family stayed.  Now, these asphalted roads had less traffic and were lined with trees on both sides.  I ran in front of hubby, both of us with our ipods on, in a leisurely 6:30 pace.  We practically owned the roads at that time so, like the queen of the road, I started singing aloud along with Beyonce.

When we reached 3.5km at the Subic Golf & Country Club’s driving range, we made a u-turn, ran through those dreaded sidewalks, and arrived at the hotel for a total of 7 km.  We could’ve gone farther, but we had to make it back in time for the beach.

{ 7 LBS. }

I think I was stuffing adobo into my mouth, dipping chips into salsa, or dropping Food for the Gods unto my tongue throughout the entire trip.  It was a food fest, I tell you.  And, despite that 7 km (or 405 calorie) run, I managed to gain a whopping 7 lbs. in three days…

S-E-V-E-N!  Can you believe that?!

I’m guessing three of those pounds is water weight, so that’ll be gone by tomorrow morning.  As for the four other pounds…oh boy, it’ll take more than a good night’s sleep to get rid of those, but I’m definitely not allowing them to join me in 2009.  Two days of discipline should take care of them…I hope.

S-E-V-E-N…sheesh.

‘Tis The Day Before Christmas

Wednesday, 24 December 2008  |  Bullish Insights

It’s the day before Christmas and I just love how slow and sleepy everything is until family and friends gather together for Christmas eve dinner and mass tonight.  

This morning was quite the opposite for me though.  It was filled with energy and laughter and food and chatter.

At 6:30 a.m., Annie, JunC and I met for our unofficial Christmas run along the roads of Ayala Alabang.  We had no goals—no target distance nor time—all we knew was that we would run at “kwento pace.”

Somewhere in the middle of the run, I parted ways with them as I decided to head back when my knee started bugging me again.  I finished 10km while they ran a fast and hilly 9.5km.  We met at the park where we had our little potluck picnic:  Annie brought skyflakes, dip, and pichi pichi, I brought bananas, sports drinks, and oreos, while Jun brought his favorite fig newtons.

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By 8:30 a.m., I was back on the road headed for Greenmeadows on the opposite side of the earth.  I was to meet my cousin from New York, Celine, at the clubhouse pool for a swim.  By the time I arrived, she was headed for home, so I swam an easy 500-meters at the crystal clear pool all by my lonesome.  I hadn’t swam for over two months since my Dad’s passing and I hadn’t realized how much I missed it; it was so calm, almost like a cleansing and purging before the New Year.  

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This afternoon is all about rest and relaxation before the long and merry night ahead.  Stop reading this already and take a quick nap.  I should be getting one soon too…

Christmas at Kim’s

Tuesday, 23 December 2008  |  Bullish Insights

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– Kim showing off her running profiles from Ben Chan to friends. More photos of Kim here -

KIM O’ CONNELL: OUR NEW RUNNING MOMMY

First time I met Kim was at the Animo Run. We bumped into each other after the race and spoke briefly.  That was it, but I knew I would never forget her: She spoke with a unique accent, such a gentle voice, and a very pleasant and cheerful disposition.  Meeting her was like coming home to mom (and, by the way, my mom has a slight accent too.)

A few months after, I learned that Kim was being coached by my coach, Coach Jo-Ar.  Still, we rarely saw each other.

Come November, when Annie and I were searching for a hotel to stay in for the Singapore Marathon, Coach Jo-Ar informed us that he had told Kim about us and before we knew it, Kim had helped us book a hotel room!  By the time we arrived in Singapore, Kim was like our 2nd mommy: dropping by our room to check on us, giving us MRT cards, hosting a pre-race carbo loading party, and making sure we were all set before we left.

Kim arrived in Manila only last January and it comes as no surprise that, in such a short time, she has amassed such a large number of friends.  She’s such a delightful person to be with.

KIM’S CHRISTMAS DINNER 

Kim and her husband, Patrick, invited us into their beautiful home last Sunday for a wonderful Christmas dinner among, as Patrick cheerfully revealed, around 45 of Kim’s running friends and only 5 of his colleagues.  

Kim and Patrick, who I met for the first time that evening, were gracious hosts throughout the evening.  The dinner was scrumptious…and sinful (so the thought of dieting in my mind was immediately replaced with super crispy lechon on my plate), live vocals from Nino Alejandro was outstanding (for a while there I thought David Cook was serenading me) and, of course, the company of running friends made the evening even more delightful—and interesting.

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I had the pleasure of dining with Patrick, Bald Runner, Capt. Espejo, Melvin from Fort Striders, Coach Rio, Coach Jo-Ar, and my hubby.  One doesn’t need to wonder what we talked about for the most part of the evening.  Running and everything about it: marathons, ultras, competitive running, recreational, road races, track, PATAFA—you name it, we talked about it.  

After that evening, I realized that, as much as runners are bound by a common love for running, we are still very different in so many aspects: how we allow it to affect our lives, how we train, who we train with, our running goals, our vision for the sport in the country, and so many more.  

If I could just add one more thing to my Christmas Wish List right now, it would be this: For all of us runners—especially the movers and shakers of the running community now—to work as one to make 2009 a bigger and brighter year for running.  Collaboration is the key, not competition.

To Patrick and Kim, thank you once again for inviting us.  To Kim—the most kind-hearted, generous, and caring runner around—I feel fortunate to have met you.  You look soft on the outside, but you are one tough and courageous woman!  Go for your Ultra!


2009 Marathon Schedule Updates

Friday, 19 December 2008  |  Race Announcements

If you’re confused with the changes in full marathon schedules, you are not alone.  Here is the updated marathon schedules for 2009:

  • Philippine Marathon: moved from Feb 22 to March 8
  • Quezon City Marathon: moved from Feb to October 18
  • Clark Marathon: initially planned for Feb, but now set for December 5 (tentative)

Will Milo Marathon be in August?  Will there still be a Subic Marathon?  Is there any other marathon that you know of that’s not listed above?

For now, that’s the list of marathons for next year.  Take your pick and start training…uhm, maybe after Noche Buena.

Who Wants to Run on the Skyway?

Friday, 19 December 2008  |  Race Announcements

I do!  

Running on the Skyway—it’s wide, paved, elevated roads overlooking the metro and just a touch away from the clouds—has been my dream for the longest time.  No one is ever allowed to walk on this road, much less run on it.  But, thanks to Condura, we’ll all have the chance to do so!

Get ready for CONDURA RACE on March 22, 2009, where the Half Marathon route will partially pass the South Luzon Skyway coming from Bonifacio Global City.  Woohoo!  There will also be a 3k/ 5k/ 10k race.

Patrick

- Patrick Concepcion, Ton Concepcion, Mr. Borromeo (President – Skyway), Mr. Nepomuceno (Skyway – VP for Operations) at the MOA signing for Condura Skyway Run last night -

Thank you in advance to Condura Durables, Inc. headed by running brothers, Patrick and Ton Concepcion, for raising the bar when it comes to local races!

Further details on early registration for Condura Skyway Run will be available soon.  I’ll keep you posted.

Visit Patrick’s blog here.