MM 3rio 1st Series – Virtual Run

What is a virtual race?

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I’ ll admit- I had NO CLUE what a virtual race was until last year. I kept hearing about them-but just ignored it until someone asked me to run a virtual race and do a write up about it- I figured it was time to learn what they were and how to run one.

So here are the basics:-

What is a virtual race? 

A vitual race is a “race” that can be run anywhere you are- no specific starting time or starting place- occasionally they have specific dates, or sometimes the dates will range a week or two to give you time to finish it. Just pick your favourite running path and RUN!

What is the distance for virtual races?

They can be ANY distance! You can walk, jog or run wherever you may be, and at anytime during the race week or month for a 5 KM, 10 KM or 12 KM. For this virtual race, I have completed 11.7 KM

How much do they cost?

Virtual races can either be free or cost $$$..Normally if they cost $$$, you get a medal, a race shirt or a bag or it means there will be some pretty great prizes involved for the “winners”. Sometimes the freebie virtual races get prizes involved- or sometimes it’s for the sheer motivation of getting you out the door for a run.

What if I am not fast?

It does not matter! Most virtual races do NOT go by time since there is no way to compare courses, terrain, weather or prove distance/times are accurate. Most virtual races will just have you submit a time to show you did it!

Do I need a garmin/GPS or some proof to show my time/distance?

Sometimes yes, sometimes no. Most work on the honor system-some require you show proof. Photos and plotting your course or showing any watch (even if it’s not a gps watch) sometimes counts- so just check with the race beforehand.

I ran a virtual race, now what?

Share it on social media. After all, what good is a virtual race if you run it and don’t tell anyone! The whole point of a virtual race is share it “virtually”.

There are differences between virtual and traditional races, but both race types still give you a sense of accomplishment when you finish; your friends and family will continue to “like” your facebook post with your finishing photos and race times. Virtual racing has more appeal now that I have three children. Sometimes the thought of dragging everyone out in the morning for a 5.00am race start is so daunting that makes me want to run back to bed. But, I love the atmosphere at traditional races; I thrive off other racers energy and excitement and I love to see my family and friends at the finish line. Therefore, I decided to supplement some virtual races into my calendar and save my family some precious sleep every once in a while.

I have just completed “MM 3rio 1st series” 11.7 KM virtual run and received a very cool “Tiger” medal and an awesome pawsome tiger T-shirt too. My next virtual run- I will Soar like an Eagle and win my Eagle medal for MM 3rio 2nd series virtual run! Why don’t you join me…for more information log in to: http://beestorm.com.my/mmtriorun2

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Ramadhan- Sharing is caring

In this holy month of Ramadhan, it is a time for reflection, fasting and penance. As a mother of three wonderful children, our tagline has always been “sharing is caring”.

Last Saturday, 16 June, I was privileged to share this auspicious day with more than 40 children from Yayasan Kebajikan Anak- Anak Yatim Piatu Port Dickson for a Majlis Berbuka Puasa function which was graciously held at Thistle Hotel, Port Dickson. For many of them, it was their first time, first experience breaking fast in a posh environment – a hotel and there was great excitement when they were ushered to a garden dinner set up. Their faces lit up like light bulbs, sounds of laughter everwhere, happy faces all around and some in tears.

The guest of honor, YB Dato’ Tun Haji Hairuddin Abu Bakar, Ahli Majlis Mesyuarat Kerajaan Negeri Sembilan, ADUN Kawasan Bagan Pinang, also present was the charming and gracious Mr Camille Thiry- The GM of Thistle Hotel, Port Dickson and my good friend Puan Azlina Ahmad, Boongah Events, made the night even more special and meaningful.

The dinner set up was pretty awesome, in a garden with many tents, over looking the sea…ahhhh…the view…For a moment I thought I was in a wrong venue, I thought I was in a garden wedding…..LOL

The ambiance was pleasant with antique lamps on each tables. Thistle Hotel Port Dickson had rolled out a delectable Buffet spread in conjuction with Ramadhan. Thistle Hotel Port Dickson and team geared and served the Anak- Anak Yatim Piatu with offerings from our heritage this being called “Ramadhan Warisan”. It offered a unique blend of tradisional Malay cuisine infused with local and Mediterranean flavours such as Daging Rendang, Ayam Panggang, Sambal Udang, Laksa, TomYam and among others. In deed, the menu brought back tasty dishes that reminded me of good old meals from the kampung together with the lagend favourites dishes such as Ayam Masak Kari, Asam Laksa, Penang Laksa and Ikan Goreng. It was indeed a scrumptious dining, sharing and caring experience that I will never forget.

Thank you Boongah Events and Thistle Hotel Port Dickson for this Majlis Berbuka Puasa event in conjuction with a time when all Malaysians gather their families, friends and the less fortunate to celebrate love and friendships.

INTO THE WOODS NIGHT TRAIL

fb_img_1466005472034.jpgSomething happens to you when you are out into the woods or forest alone..Ohhhh, did I mention that it’s dark and it’s in the night? Hmmm, the nearest people or runners 2 KM away in each direction, and having spent every ounce of physical and mental energy available in your reserves. The complete silence/ the sound of the woods or forest envelope you, your senses are heightened and alert, and you loose your sense of time, of place……hmmmmm…you start to hallucinate…..”Annabelle! Annabelle! She is right behind of you!! Run for your life……Other times you are keenly aware of your surroundings,” Bugs! Bugs! It’s alive! It’s alive! EEEEEeeekkk…..

Trail running isn’t intimidating. It does not mean you have to run a 21 KM, go vegan and eat protein diets all day long, and or maybe grow a beard (ehhem….although beards are scientifically proven to make men run 14.2% faster). Trail running is simply about being out in the nature, placing one foot in front of the other, and repeating for as long you feel like.

So why should you consider trail running? If you are a trail runner, I do not need to preach to the converted about the joys and thrills of getting outside! There are many reasons, but most notably is that it can open up a whole new world to you! More so than hiking, trail running can get you to new trails, vistas and summits you have never seen..INTO THE WOODS NIGHT TRAIL and beyond…….!!

wp-1466006103677.jpgThere is a freedom and connection to nature on the trail that you simply cannot replicate anywhere else. If you haven’t yet had the opportunity to do a run on a trail, stop whatever you are doing and get yourself signed up for INTO THE WOODS- Night Trail run by Compressport now at https:// thenextstep.events on the 1st October at Semenyih Eco Venture Resort & Recreation.

You won’t be sorry but you will fall in love, promise!

Show your true colors & Run for your cause

screenshot_2016-06-15-23-23-56.pngI am not what you typically imagine when you envision a runner. I am not tall and slender with sexy, long legs, and you were more likely to see me “running” late to a dinner reservation than to see me running in the park near my home. But in a quest to become healthier and lose some weight, I started running!

Not only is running one of the most efficient ways to burn calories, lose weight, trim body fat and increase lean muscle, but it also helps to reduce the risk of stroke and heart attack and has been found to reduce the risk of cancer too!

For me, the benefits did not end there. What started as a solo journey to improved health has reached far beyond my personal goals. Almost every race I ran was sponsored by a charitable organisation to raise money and bring awereness to a specific cause. Every race promoted a valuable casue, and every race was put into perspective. Magically, I wasn’t just running for one anymore. I was running for something greater than myself. I was running to raise money for charity. I was running to raise awereness for those whom we have lost, for survivors, for our environment and for those who celebrate equality. These races became more than just races: they became causes and incentives to do my best for others.

To prepare, just lace up your running shoes and go. It does not matter how fast at first….your pace, your race!

So, whether you are setting a goal for a new you or a goal to be part of something bigger than yourself, RUN! Sign up for AXA- Hearts in Action Run 2016 at http://www.axa.com.my This race is a wonderful way to begin a fitness journey in a meaningful way. Not only will you achieve your fitness goals and earn a great sense of empowerment and accomplishment, but you will also be giving back and helping others in the process.

“Run for a cause- Don’t run with your legs, run with your heart!”

Forget the miles..Just remember the glory

Just like we all experience “bad” runs on any given day, we can also find ourselves coming off a “bad” race. Maybe things just didn’t come together as you had hoped. There are a lot of factors that go into racing well, some of them we can control and some of them we can’t!

The morning of the PD Coast Run, we got there a little early in order to collect our racekit, and to my surprise, our racekits were missing! According to the volunteer, someone has already taken it….WoahhHH! We were like a ball, being kicked around. Anyhow, they managed to issue a “manual” on the spot registration. I was supposed to run 11 KM, but at the very last minute I changed my mind and decided to just run the 8 KM run. Demotivated and feelings of rejection and neglection made me decide this at the last minute……Boooo Hooooo…

The race started at 7.25am for the 11 KM and 7.33am was the 8 KM flagged off. It’s always fun seeing the runners start. The start/finish area was set up at Pantai Cahaya Port Dickson. It’s the perfect venue for a race amd they had their sponsors such as MILO, REVIVE etc all set up in the area. However, we were unable to use the bathrooms before the start because it was all locked. So, I had a pep talk and told my tummy tum tum to behave and be kind to me…..But I could see lots of the other runners who were in dire straits….OH OH!

The race was getting the food set up for the runners which was various items such as Nasi Lemak, Coffee, Revive, Milo etc. With that we were ready to get in line and run. The course is run on various surfaces including road, grass and sand. I seriously had no plans for this race since I arrived at the starting race venue. There were hills, mostly the roadside but nothing too large to worry about. The course was somehow lacked of Marshalls and proper signages.

I sighted one or two police cars to help stopped traffic for the runners but along the route, the organisers did not have proper safety measures such as cones or dividers or even Marshalls to guide or lead the runners.

Soon, we were on the beach side. It was really nice to run, we crossed lots of holiday makers along the beach side, the sand was soft, I rarely run on the beach, It was indeed a nice feeling. It was runnable route in the area. One of my favourite thing about this course is the various terrain. I love that it switches up from road to grass to sand and back. It made the time go by so fast. Before I knew it, I was already reaching the finish line.

 Then, we were running the opposite of the 11 KM runners. There was a little out and back that we had to go in order to get back to the finish. Here, there were lots of confusion, controversy and misunderstandings happened between the lead runners/winners and the organisers.

It was now time time to run back to the finish line where we started the race. We were finally ‘back to the beach” and you could hear some of the spectators cheering on the runners. We were also mixed in, at that point, with the 11 KM runners on the same course. More confusions,more protests, more unhappiness happened among the runners and winners.

screenshot_2016-06-04-17-13-47.pngAnyway, as we headed towards the finish, we crossed a timing mat where the race was
announcing names as we ran to the finish….(NOT!!) How I wish that could happen…LOL…If only that could happen, it would make a special ending for the finishers..something to look into, dear organisers. With that, we were finished. When I checked my endomondo, it was only 5.89 KM..WHAT?????

AID STATIONS

There were several aid stations. They were stocked with the necessites. Thumbs up for that!

FINISH AREA

The finish area is the same as the start area. Organisers used timing chips on the bibs for this race, even with these, so much of controversy and dissatisfaction among the runners and winners. Timing chips are used as it makes it much easier and much professional. Somehow,the organisers failed badly in this area. Something to seriously look into. I felt sorry for the volunteers as they had many complaints/arguments among the runners.

AMENITIES

For your entry, you received a custom race bib, a T-shirt and a Bag (Somehow, the bag was “out of sight, out of mind”) The medal for 11 KM (As well as the 8 KM) was really disappointing. It looked like a school sports day medal. The design..hmmm….the size…the quality….Ah yo yo yo yo yo…

ORGANIZATION

A very disorganized race. The set up at Pantai Cahaya Port Dickson was a perfect area for a race and the route was unique given the various surfaces. The website/FB pages gave all sorts of information so that we know what’s going on, which was good. The start/finish area were not well planned. No proper sound systems, No warm up sessions etc, the flagged off was delayed and the Volunteers did not know what to do. Overall, it could have been better!

 

PD Coast Run 2016

PD Coast Run also known as “Larian Seribu Senyuman” celebrates healthiness, happiness, individuality, fun and of course- SMILES!

The atmosphere rocks! Seriously, the sound of waves and seabirds, the smell of the ocean, the beautiful vistas- does it get any better than that??

This weekend will be the PD Coast Run…just in case you are keeping tabs. If you are hitting the road- PD Pantai Cahaya for the PD Coast Run be sure to pack your sunscreen, some tasty snacks, your running shoes..Running by the beach allows for not only a change in scenery but also an opportunity to meet some local runners.

blog-post-checklist.jpgPre- Race Day Check-List:

  1. Eat a nutrious (and normal) breakfast :- Eat the same things that you have been working for you through your training. Don’t try anything new or overeat-no matter how tempting that waffle or nasi lemak might be.
  2. Sip, don’t gulp, water:- Most of your key hydration prior to a race happens the day before. Don’t drink too much water in the morning before your run, or else risk making a dreaded porta potty stop.
  3. Get to the starting line early:- Always allow for more time at the race check-in than you think you’ll need. Between grabbing your bib, going to the bathroom, and getting to the starting line, you will be glad you got there with plenty of time to spare.
  4. Embrace the race-day madness and enjoy your runner’s high:- You have come this far-enjoy it! The energy at a race is one of a kind. Soak up the awesomeness with your fellow runners and feel proud you have made it to the start line!

Things to expect:

  1. Shuffle to starting line (it takes a while for that many people to get moving)
  2. Butterflies (You will get super nervous)
  3. Excitement (yay……woot…woot….Nervous adrenaline)
  4. The “pack” will get moving quickly and sweep you away, faster than you “should” or expect to run-be etra cautious not to get swept in.
  5. You will doubt yourself at some point of the race…THIS IS NORMAL!
  6. You will also reach a point when you say to yourself, “Hey, I can do this….I AM DOING THIS!!!”
  7. Afterward, you may want to throw up……..then you may want that cold chilled cup of Milo…hmmmmm..
  8. Last but not least, when they put that finisher medal around your neck….You may tear up……

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Happy feet! Happy me! Happy running! See you at Port Dickson for PD Coast Run – Larian Seribu Senyuman 2016″

Bagan Lalang Beach Run 2016

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Slow and steady wins the race- except for a real race, where it’s fast and furious, baby! Okay! Okay! Soooo slow and steady isn’t going to win you any race- but it’ll help get you to the start line injury-free and in your best shape!

All primed and charged for 10 KM racing action, I went to the Bagan Lalang Beach Run 2016. The run went better than expected.

It was a glorious morning; However at the start area the race was due to go ahead, the organisers announced that the 21 KM and 10 KM will be flagged off without a timing chip but they will use a live cam instead…Oh well….The race must go on!

There were three start times, the 21 KM at 6.30am, the 10 KM at 6.45am and the 6 KM fun run at 7am. There was a great, buzzing atmosphere at the start line, people chatting, laughing and warming up before starting the race.

The weather was blissful. I went out a little too fast in the first kilometre, perhaps due to a rush of adrenaline in the calvalry charge of the race start. Fortunately, I soon recovered. I got my breath back by focusing on breathing out hard so that my lungs would then fill naturally to their full capacity.

The course was absolutely beautiful, but it was definitely open and very rural, no wonder it’s called Bagan Lalang…….”Banyaknya lalang”. While I was cruising and pacing, I even had the opportunity to see a huge “ular sawa” curled up an oil palm tree just by the road side..OMG! I thought I was auditioning for a role in “The Jungle Book”, where the snake would come up to me and start singing….”Trust in me”…..And who knows, magically lead me straight to the finish line LOL….Yeah right! Only in my wildest imagination…hahahahahahahahah..

What perhaps wasn’t so positive (But ultimately maybe is in the hands of the organisers) is the timing chip and the lack of signages/directions/marshalls. Most of the 10 KM men, the lead runners did not know which way or directions to go which made them loose focus and eventually lost their way. The marshalls had to chased after a few runners and get the lead runners back to the race route..aiseh….ah yooo!

Finally, the last 2 KM- the homestretch! and I think I was just a tiny bit delirious. This stretch was on mainstreet and the opposite side was the beach. Hmmm……On nice day like this, sun, ocean breeze, with the melodic sound of waves, it was in deed a great feeling from my body to my soul!

The feeling when you cross the finish line is hard to describe. There are usually goose bumps and tears, but the most satisfying element is learning about yourself and what you’re made of!

What a blast! The Bagan Lalang Beach run was like a big dance party to me! The crowd was small, busting a move in the warm up, tap dancing along the race course, doing the happy pappy dance dance at the finish line and my post run snacks-bananas and apples.You also might notice a few people doing the robot over the next few days as the stiffness sets in..

When I was out there running the race, I just couldn’t stop smiling!Runners high is real and I started to feel it around the halfway point. Sure, I got passed by a few runners but I didn’t care…

Would I do it again???? You bet!! What was the best part???? All of it!!

Happy running everyone, and thanks for reading! Maybe I will run into you at the next race. See you at PD Coast Run on the 4th June 2016.