Wednesday, 9 January 2008  |  Bullish Insights

This will be quick because I am just too overjoyed to sit still.

Are you ready?

Wait, will you take a deep breath and let out a loud “Yipeeee!” for me please?

I came from another doctor yesterday (Dr. Canlas) to get a 2nd opinion on my meniscus problem and to have my right shin checked and he basically told me this:

1) My knee and shin pain are common running injuries. I only need to strengthen and stretch my leg muscles to avoid them.
2) I never had a meniscus problem. (Can you believe it?!)
3) I can continue running all I want.

Woooah, I was definitely not ready to receive such great news! I was resigned to running with my broken knee and getting arthroscopic surgery in the long run. Lo and behold, I won’t even need it after all.

Dr. Canlas put me on 3x a week rehab (which started today) for two weeks and hopefully things will be better for me.

For now, this is all I can say: Hi ho, Hi ho, it’s off to Clark I go. See you there!

2008 Resolutions

Saturday, 5 January 2008  |  Bullish Insights

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

THIS YEAR, I resolve to:

… run easy when it is an “easy run.”

… incorporate more hill runs into my training.

… find a “softer” running route away from the concrete roads of Alabang. (Aaaw, I’ll miss my playground terribly.)

… listen to the beeping of my HRM—like when I breach Zone 4 on a long, slow run. I’m bad.

… master laughing and running simultaneously. Many a times I’ve had to pause in the middle of a run when Annie and I share a good chuckle. Such a waste of precious time! There must be a technique for one to enjoy both.

… rest when I feel pain or soreness. Denial didn’t seem to help last year.

… sacrifice a race for a long run. I can’t have my banana and eat it too.

… practice proper warm up before a race. (Thanks Ben for always reminding me about this.)

… go to the gym 2x a week for cross training and weights. Disclaimer: this resolution is effective only upon enrollment in a gym.

… cut back on mentos and choc-nut

… eat more veggies. I’m a good girl already when it comes to my fruits quota.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

2008 GOALS:

1) Run a marathon

2) Learn more about swimming and cycling (need I tell you where I am headed with this?)

3) Subtly try to convince hubby to run with me

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

The Year That Was

Wednesday, 2 January 2008  |  Bullish Insights

When I am old and gray, I will look back fondly at 2007 as a pivotal point in my life, way up there with 1997 when I graduated from college, 1999 when I met the hubby on a blind date and got engaged a couple of months after, 2000 when we married, and 2001 and 2004 when my two kids were born.

2007 changed my life, or rather the way I viewed it, undeniably and largely because of running.



… I pay less attention to the numbers on the scale and focus on getting leaner, building strength and speed, and improving my health. It’s a pleasant surprise that in my 30’s I finally feel comfortable in my own skin.

… I was taught (the hard way) about the limitations of my body: discoid lateral meniscus in my knee and vasovagal syncope that caused me to faint. Now I know that subtle symptoms such as soreness in the knee, overall feeling of weakness, or thirst are loud warning bells that require rest, better nutrition, or (knock on wood) a visit to the doctor.

… I eat less junk.

… I finally understand how sports in general can make such a positive impact in one’s life. As a non-athlete all my life, I always read about how sports can “develop confidence”, “keep children off the streets”, or “help you maintain your health” but these words never meant anything to me. Now I can say: I finally get it!

… I feel empowered. It must be the long runs that have given me this “No Fear” attitude. There’s something about pushing yourself to the limits and subsequently realizing that you have gone further than you thought possible that makes you believe more in yourself.

… I forged new friendships both in the real and virtual worlds. (I’ve made so many friends in running that I’m afraid to list them here lest I forget someone, which is likely the case with my terrible memory. You know who you are, guys!)

… I discovered the capabilities of my body and mind. As a runner, I learned how fast (46.57 mins for 10k) and how long (2 hours so far) my legs could carry me. My mind, on the other hand, knows no boundaries. As far as its concerned, it can outrun Paula and Haile on any day.

… I have learned humility and patience. It was my goal to join the Pasig Marathon on February, but at this point, I’m not even sure if I’m pushing through as the meniscus problem has set me back by a month in my training program. Surprisingly, I’m not being bull headed about it. Nope, I have welcomed it with a calm, happy surrender. If it isn’t my time this Feb, then there shall be another marathon for me. Uhm, hopefully within this year? And I’m praying my first is abroad? Lord, maybe New York? If not, perhaps Singapore? May I add without any injuries? Er, did I mention “surrender”?

How about you? What did running teach you last year or the years before?

Merry Christmas!

Monday, 24 December 2007  |  Bullish Insights

Merry Christmas to everyone! As my Christmas gift, I wrote this special song for all of you to enjoy:

(Sung to the tune of “Jingle Bells”)

Dashing through the road
With my ipod and running shoes
O’er the hills I go
Laughing all the way

Alerts on my Garmin ring
Making my spirit bright
What fun it is to run this long
Such a holiday delight!

Oh, running’s swell, running’s swell
Running all the way
Oh, what fun it is to run
With my ipod and running shoes

Oh, running’s swell, running’s swell
Running all the way
Oh, what fun it is to run
With my ipod and running shoes

 [ Repeat the refrain a hundred times over or until you reach 10km—whichever comes first ]


Is Running A Sport?

Thursday, 20 December 2007  |  Bullish Insights

“The good runner thinks only of what is in front of him and, stretching his mind toward the finish line and putting his hope of victory in his feet, does not plot against the fellow next to him or even consider his competitors.”

– Lucian, author and philosopher, 170 A.D.


When I picked up Anton, my 6-year-old son, from school a few days ago, he told me about a conversation he had with a classmate of his who claimed he knew everything:

Anton: If you know everything, then what is the sport of my mom?
Classmate: Basketball?
Anton: No.
Classmate: Soccer?
Anton: No.
Classmate: Baseball?
Anton: No.
Classmate: What is it?
Anton: Running.
Classmate: That’s not a sport. That’s just what you do in sports like basketball and soccer.

Unfortunately, my son didn’t know how to respond to that boy’s last remark. “Is running a sport, Mama?” he asked.

How could you blame Anton for doubting? Or how could one think that his classmate lacked in knowledge? The truth is so many adults still don’t see running as a sport or a competitive activity. I have a runner friend with officemates who can’t seem to comprehend anything about running yet they can grasp the beauty of the PBA. Another runner friend’s husband blatantly said that “Running is not a competitive sport.” in my eyes.

To many, running is only the means to end. It’s what one does to warm up before working out, to lose weight, or to train for another sport. No one in his right mind would run just to run.

So, my poor Anton had to sit through an entire car ride of me rattling on about what he should say to that classmate of his. “Tell him your Mama said running is a sport. Why are marathons in the olympics if it isn’t? And, why are runners called athletes if it’s not a sport? Tell him that and let’s see what he says.”  After silence from my son, I say again “Make sure you tell him that, okay?”  It was obvious Anton had regretted ever bringing up the topic with Mama Bull Runner.

If someone told you running is not a sport (which is almost like throwing a glass of wine to your face!), what would you have answered?