Baguio Bliss

Tuesday, 14 April 2009  |  Bullish Insights

You know you’re a runner when part of the excitement over an upcoming trip comes from the chance to run a new route, to give your feet the opportunity to experience something extraordinary.  Nothing will stop you, not a hectic itinerary, an injury, nor lack of sleep.  The vacation will be worthless without the run.

This was how I felt as I packed for my Baguio trip last Wednesday.  I couldn’t wait to run up the hills of Camp John Hay again.  But, at the same time, my excitement was mixed with much trepidation as (and I haven’t told you this yet) my heel was still bothering me from Condura.  My PT said it was almost tib-post tendonitis (almost being the operative word) and it was only a matter of time before I would be well enough to run again.  In the meantime, he wrapped my heel to my shin with kinesio tape to deload the muscle.  He allowed me to run but only if there was minimal pain.



– View from our cottage –

Hubby and I woke up to a chilly Baguio morning, just perfect for a morning run.  Our cottage rested on top of a hill so getting down to the main road was a good downhill warm up.  He went ahead to run towards Camp John Hay, while I had to hold myself back and go for a long, boring warm up to make sure my heel was alright.  After 400m, I found myself inside Camp John Hay too.  As I walked up a steep hill just after the gate, I remembered the elite runners last year doing their hill training with their Coach.  How I wished I could do the same!  Grrrr!  As soon I reached the flat roads, I slowly increased my pace.  Less than a minute after, I slowed to a stop; the heel pain was back.  I walked my way back in a grumpy mood thinking Teacher’s Camp, here I come.


If I couldn’t run, then I would turn to my second love, swimming.  By 6:30 a.m., I was at the pool of Baguio Country Club.  Just seeing their pool, which was heated by the way, completely erased my depression from the previous day.  I jumped into the lap pool and swam over 1000m.  I got lost in my thoughts and my happiness that I forgot to count. Then, I slid into the jacuzzi for 10 minutes of complete rest and relaxation. Heaven!


– Heated lap pool at Baguio Country Club –


– Jacuzzi by the lap pool –


It was time for my second test run, this time at the track.  Hubby, my sister in law and her husband, and I went to the track oval at Teacher’s Camp.  There were around 20 runners—a mix of leisure runners, serious, and elite, judging from their appearance.  There was even a sheep who probably could outrun me! 


– Track oval at Teacher’s Camp –


– with hubby and the in laws –


– I hope they get this portion fixed –

The weather was perfect for speedwork, but of course, I had to be content with whatever easy run I could have.  I walked 2 rounds and gradually increased the pace.  After a series of walks and easy run intervals, I managed to run 600m without pain at around 6:30 pace!  Oooooh, it was enough to make me happy.  I quit at 3k with a smile.  Things were looking up.

Not content with a 3k run, I asked hubby to drop me at the club.  I put on my wet swimsuit  (have you ever tried sliding into a wet bathing suit on a cold day?  I did—and I don’t recommend it) and I jumped into the heated pool again.  The initial discomfort was a small price to pay for the great 1000m swim!


Due to my incessant yapping about the heated pool, the in laws and my kids had to see it for themselves.  So, by the same afternoon, I got into my wet swimsuit yet again and swam with my future triathletes (I’m crossing my fingers here!)


– Little Bull Runners hamming it up for the cam with their cousin –

Sure, the runs were bad, but time spent with family plus great swims made up for it. I figured the awful runs aren’t worth crying about; I’ll have another chance to run the hills of Camp John Hay again. In fact, I might just be up there again in a couple of weeks…


– Ready, set…go! –

Back From Baguio

Sunday, 12 April 2009  |  Bullish Insights

Aaaah, back from a 5-day trip in the City of Pines.  It was supposed to be a vacation, but work beckoned so most of my mornings were simply bonding moments with my laptop looking out at the golfers from the verandah of Baguio Country Club.  The rest of the time was spent with family fulfilling all the kids’ wishes.

Nope, I didn’t abandon the blog.  I had actually posted twice, but with the changes going on behind the scenes, there are still some things we have to fix.  Anyway, I have a lot of stories to tell about my failed test run at Camp John Hay, my slightly fulfilling 3k run (with only slight pain) at the track of Teacher’s Camp, plus my oh-so blissful swims at the heated pool of Baguio Country Club.  Heaven!

How was your Holy Week? (We’re back to regular programming so feel free to comment!)

Happy One Month Zero Runniversary to Me

Thursday, 2 April 2009  |  Running + Triathlon, Therapy + Injury


It was time to flip the family calendar last night from one month to the next, an event that my kiddos look forward to every month as they get to choose which stickers to apply for upcoming activities. They have stickers for family trips, haircut, sleepovers, and more while I just pull out a thick, black pentel pen, search for the Sundays, and scribble the races I’m joining on that month.

Last night, as I was about to turn the page to April, I got the shock of my life. On March 1, exactly a month ago, I wrote down the two words every runner in the world dreads: STOP RUNNING. And, only then did I realize that it’s been a full month since I had completely stopped running due to my injuries.

I yelled in horror to the hubby, “Aaah, I’ve had zero runs for one full month!” He replied nonchalantly “What about Condura Half?” Oh yeah, forgot about that. Perhaps I should’ve said “I’ve had zero training runs for the entire month of March.”

Training runs are the runs I live for. While I have goal races, such as dream half or full marathons here and abroad, I believe it’s the regular runs—those solo 10k runs on the road or speedwork at Ultra—that keep me happy. I never could relate to runners who cringe at another long run or those who run to get the program over with so they can reach their marathon goal. I run because I just want to. If I don’t, I am incomplete.

Hopefully, I don’t reach my 2nd month Zero Runniversary. After all, I registered for Greenfield City Run this April 19.

TBR on Good Times with Mo

Wednesday, 1 April 2009  |  Press

I was driving home this morning from a long morning at the pool with TI instructor, Nonoy, and classmate, Dondi, and as always I was listening to my favorite morning habit on 89.9, “Good Times with Mo” with Mo Twister, Mojo, and Grace Lee.  

There is not a weekday (except Fridays when they’re not on) that I don’t listen to this trio on the radio.  They’re discussions are thought-provoking and intellectually stimulating, but most importantly, they are downright funny.  I can’t count how many times I’ve laughed out loud alone in the car after taking the kids to school or coming home from a training run.  Needless to say, I am a huge fan.  Huge! 

This morning, it was not a surprise that Sen. Pia Cayetano was on the show.  She was a guest last week and a couple of days ago she was a guest on Mo Twister’s TV show as well to discuss current issues, promote her advocacies, and of course, touch on her personal life as well (which, fortunately for us, includes running.)  But, what surprised me was this: Mojo Jojo mentioning The Bull Runner Magazine!  Yes, he did!

So, TBR was NOT actually on the show (as written on the title of this post which was made only to fool you into reading this), but TBR Magazine was there, in the hands of Mojo, to be exact.  He basically asked Sen. Pia about her training program and mentioned that he was reading about it in The Bull Runner Magazine.  Woohooo…what a pleasant surprise!  Good Times with Mo, you just made my day!

Thanks to Sen. Pia for bringing your copy of TBR Magazine!

What Would You Do for Love?

Saturday, 14 February 2009  |  Bullish Insights

I would run a marathon for you. 

That’s what Tank Turner (Dane Cook) told Alexis (Kate Hudson) in the movie “My Best Friend’s Girl.”  It wasn’t a great movie, but I loved that line.  Well, I kinda fall for anything that’s associated with running.


So, how far would you run to prove your love for your partner?  How much pain are you willing to endure?  How many pieces of chocolate are you willing to give up for your beloved (and for your waistline, too)?

For me, I would tell my husband this:  I would skip a marathon for you.  Now that, my friends, is the ultimate sacrifice.

Happy Valentine’s Day to all!