Meebo Bar

Sunday, 31 July 2011

‘king of pop’ fever spotted in putrajaya!

Last night’s Men’s Health/Shape Night Run was also graced by beautiful, hotties commemorating the ‘King of Pop’, Michael Jackson who passed away in June 29 2009. These fun runners, Shanaz, Nana, Azu and Marlin, ran in the 12.3km category, wearing a white top with ‘We Red heart MJ’ printed on it, with suspenders, glove on one hand and a fedora to top it up. The idea was to celebrate MJ’s birthday next month on the 29th, 53 years back, but since it would be during the fasting month, so they decided to bring it a month in advance. There were no fun in their finishing time though, all of them with uber fast timings! Surprised smile

*grabbed crotch* AWWWWW!!! Hot smile Enjoy the ‘bad’ pics guys! Winking smile

Nana with her running pose

(L-R): Nana, Shanaz, Marlin, Azu

Nana doing an MJ signature pose

Shanaz and Nana

The 4 ‘MJ’ girls

Me with Azu and Nana

Shanaz ‘trying’ her very best to emulate the King, while on the phone, while walking, while TSB’s walking behind, while trying to pose, while..


Who wouldn’t want to take photos with ‘em! Nyah-Nyah

men’s health/shape night run 2011

An evening race is never a favourite in my running CV. My only evening race prior to this one was the ill-fated Energizer Night Run 2011 in Sepang. It was a disaster, albeit the fact that it was supposed to be my first Full Marathon. That night was probably the longest and my loneliest run ever! Sick smile

This year’s event was held in Putrajaya, like the previous years. I did quite a number of night runs in Putrajaya before and clocked a substantial amount of mileage along the way. There were Irwan’s Putrajaya Twilight Challenge, and RBU’s LSD Series which I took part in. There was also the NB15 in June, but that was held in the morning.

What made this race more challenging was when the organizers decided to limit the medals to 200 pieces only for my category, Men’s Open. At least that’s better than the 75 they offered last year! Surprised smile

Before the run I had a relief knowing that the water stations are located 3 km apart of each other, banishing the memories of last weekend’s Seremban Half. Target was simple, nick that top 200 placing, and the medal would be mine. To do that, I had to be very mindful of the time I wished to achieve at the finishing line. Going below 1 hour for a 12.3 km distance would be a bit too daunting for me, well at least for now Winking smile. So I decided maybe a sub-1:10 would do the job for me. All I had to do was to keep my pace around 5:20 – 5:30 per km throughout the whole race.

283163_10150250086980382_591515381_7750464_6324196_nThe mood before the event started Open-mouthed smile 

We were gunned off at 8:20 pm. Yimster gave a timely advice in Seremban, that I should keep to my own pace during a race. Yes that temptation to go fast will always be there, especially in the beginning, but you would regret the consequences during the later part of the race, if you could not sustain. So I did exactly that. Running at my own pace, while keeping it within the intended range. 1:07:27 hours later, fighting the so hot and so humid weather, I crossed the finishing arch. To my relief, I was among the top 200 runners, 186th (phew!), and am eligible for the coveted medal. YEAY! Open-mouthed smile

IMG-20110731-00494 IMG-20110731-00496

Overall the race was okay. Route was a familiar one, so not so much of a problem to tackle it. Inclines at PICC, flat on the others. It however did not help ease my discomfort running an evening race. I still hate it. Nyah-Nyah

The only thing that bothered me was that the event organization could have been better, at least at par with the publicity that came with it. Though water stations were aplenty, I did not think serving plain water, instead of isotonic was a wise thing to do. At least one of those stations should serve Gatorade, since they were one of the sponsors. The stations were also under-manned. The last thing a runner would expect is to wait for the cups to be filled when they reach a water-station. The disorganization at Gatorade’s booth at the after finishing was also uncalled for. The number of volunteers was inadequate for the size of the event. Maybe these are some of the lessons learnt that should go into the organizers’ sleeves, so that next year the event will be better organized. Kudos though, apart from that, the event was smooth, and I think the goodies bag really lived up to the expectations. Smile with tongue out

P/s: To Azu, no worries on the non-medal, there are other races coming. Every race has its own story remember. Winking smile


With Mazu (L), 1st event (kan?) and Moon (R), 2nd event. 27 minutes 5 km, not bad! Congratulations both! Smile

Tuesday, 12 July 2011

garmin forerunner 610

Garmin Forerunner 610

It has been around a month-and-a-half now since I debuted the Garmin Forerunner 610 to monitor and record my runs. The 610 is the latest edition of Garmin’s famed GPS watch production line. Before I used a Forerunner, I relied on my Blackberry or the Nike+ application on my iPod. The Nike+ uses a foot pod, which meant accuracy was never there. It had to be calibrated all the time. When I bought a Blackberry, I downloaded an application called miCoach from Adidas, which was a very good running application if you’re using a GPS enabled mobile phone. However, the GPS drains life out of the Blackberry and it went kaput quite often during events which I ran in. So I turned to Garmin.

The most prominent feature of the Forerunner 610 is that this time it’s operation is fully touch screen. Unlike the overly sensitive touch bezels introduced in the previous 405, 405cx and 410 models, the 610’s touch screen does not have such problem. You either swipe, tap or scroll to change your settings, or to take a look at your different data while running. Garmin devices are worldly known for its strength in GPS, so the 610 is no exception. It has a high sensitivity GPS receiver which aptly means it takes less time to lock the satellites, and it provides improved tracking near obstacles such as trees and tall buildings.

Other features such as Auto Lap, Auto Pause and Vibration Alerts are standard in previous Forerunner models. Auto Lap detects each time you pass the starting point or when you have lapped a certain distance. Auto Pause automatically pauses your Forerunner if for example you had to take a break by the roadside to tie your shoes. All these features are customizable according to the users’ needs. There are also the Virtual Partner and Virtual Racer options which I found most intriguing Virtual Partner is for runners to run against a static pace that he or she has set, while the Virtual Racer is running against your personal best, over the same route, or an activity from another user.

After all that, you can upload your data wirelessly to your computer, and analyze your runs using an online service (which you have to register prior) at Garmin Connect. Here you can see some of the important aspects of your run such as your running distance, pace, elevation, heart rate, calories and a map where your route is shown. Those who are hooked up on the social running websites such as the dailymile or MapMyRUN, you can easily synchronize your runs once you have a Garmin Connect account. You can also do this without going into the internet using a software called Garmin Training Center.

Garmin Connect View data at Garmin Connect

The 610 uses a rechargeable lithium-ion battery, and it lasts 8 hours when in training mode. That is more than enough for me to complete my full marathon. Big Grin It may be a let down for the ultra-marathoners though, unless of course if one can complete an ultra-marathon in less than 8 hours! Tongue

All in all, the Forerunner 610 is a more-than-good-enough device for me. It has reliable GPS, tracks vital data, data transfer to a computer is simple, battery life is adequate, and decent features. It can also double up as a watch, since it looked like the normal in the streets wrist-watch to me. The standard package, which comes together with a heart monitor, is reasonably priced at RM1200 – RM1300, which is even lower than the previous models. You can also visit its website here, for more information. My advice is, if you are an avid runner, I’d truly recommend you to get one immediately. Happy

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