Halloween Fitness Dance Party @ Radical Fitness Studio

It’s fun! It’s Fitness! It’s Zumba!

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Get out those cat ears and sassy tails and come shake them to a variety of international music.  Bring on the sweat!  It’s gonna be an exciting night Halloween party!  Shakira’s Shewolf, Thriller, Vampire samba music, Cumbia de los Monsters, She’s the Devil disco music, swing to the Purple People eater and more!  No experience needed!

Everyone can participate, all Fitness Levels are welcome, NO Dance Experience is required!

You don’t have to wear a costume if you don’t celebrate Halloween.  But if you do, show your Halloween Spirit and be creative! Don’t need to spend much money to make it fun!

Move and dance to an all-Halloween-inspired playlist. (be prepared to dance and sweat)!

Join the party… if you dare!

Dance to great Latin and world music with great people, and burn a ton of calories without even realizing it! Zumba and jazzercise classes take the “work” out of workout, by mixing low-intensity and high-intensity moves for an interval-style dance party. Benefits include a total workout, combining all elements of fitness – cardio, muscle conditioning, balance and flexibility, boosted energy and a serious dose of awesome by the time you leave this party!

Bring along the kids for FREE (below 12 years old) and have some great family fun at our Zumba Halloween Party only at Radical Fitness Studio @ Plazo, Lot 76, Jalan Komersial Saujana 3, S2 Heights!

 

 

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HSN21KM 2018 Race Review

The Terrible, the horrible, no good run

To say I was waiting for this day all year-long is an understatement. You’ve put in hundred of miles and looked forward to this day, expecting to be celebrating, but end up feeling bitter and let down. It’s not fun, but it’s part of racing. Well, this definitely wasn’t the race I was hoping for and not the recap I really wanted to write but sometimes races don’t go the way we’d hope.

On Saturday, I was primed to have The Most Awesomest Run Ever.

I’m a competitive person – put me in a dodge ball court and it’ll get ugly – but for me, running isn’t a sport. It’s a sanctuary – a sweaty, beautiful hour of my life that is just about my feet and the ground.

You can do everything right, and you’ll still have runs that go poorly. For every few runs that make me feel like I’m on the top of the world, another one will come around that tests my resolve and shatters my confidence. And sometimes, on the surface, it doesn’t make much sense. But as I get more mature in both my real life and my running, I realize more and more how many aspects there are to running. It may be a physical act, but it requires a degree of mental and emotional strength – many would argue that these are even more important than the ability to put one leg in front of the other. Bad runs happen to all of us – and as they pop up, I am trying to use the opportunity to reflect on potential causes. Is there is something going on in my life that is affecting how I feel today?

And fine maybe I’m taking my word of the year a little too far to say I LOVE bad runs, but really they don’t bum me out the way they used to when I first started running. Now I kind of embrace them because I’ve learned that a bad run is a great teacher.

At 7.45pm, the 21KM runners were asked to gather at the starting line- we were briefed by the emcee (however, announcements were not clear, due to the echo- it was difficult to hear/understand) To what I observed, this race had many elite runners as well as first timers and beginners. Let me also give you a picture of the course…..downhills…….downhills……..wind at your back…..darkness….rain……..slight up hills……turn around…….u-turn…..and run back up these damn hills!

The atmosphere:

This was one of the best part of this run- best feeling ever, standing at the start line in the National Stadium, Bukit Jalil. You could just feel the energy pulse through the crowd. It’s positive. It’s up beat! It’s anxious and it’s simply awesome!

The flag off however was delayed because the organisers had to wait for the green light from the police before they could proceed , they needed time to clear and close the roads before the could start the race. Then, we sang the ‘Negaraku’. After 15 minutes later, the elite runners were flagged off, followed by the runners five minutes afterwards.

The music was pumping, the energy was high, and we literally danced to the beat as we approached the Start Line. As people made it closer and closer to the start, the race commentator shouted “You are a hero”; “You are amazing”; and “This is your race, go for it”.And on that note, we were off!

Along the way, there were many hydration stations, however, to my disappointment, it was badly manned. I had to skipped three hydration stations to avoid being pushed and shoved. The paper cups were just stacked up and was empty, runners had to wait for the volunteers to pour into the cups. Eventually, paper cups ended up flying everywhere.

I’m not being dramatic, when I say this, but at the Selangor Turf Club, I was so impressed by those running around ( and past) me. It was drizzling, dark muddy and pot holes everywhere, I even got hit by a stroller (Gang Runners’ Stroller) Oucchhhh……but even though it was evidence we were all struggling , everyone pushed on! It was like a scene of a herd of cows and goats being ushered into the ‘kandang’. Eventually, runners had to walk along this route to avoid from being injured. While walking through this route, I observed that a few runners were injured though, some fell into the ‘longkang’, sprained their ankles due to have fallen into the pot holes, I even saw a runner collapsed by the side, awaiting for medics to arrive. ( hope and pray that he is alright). At this point of time, the medics and ambulance were working non-stop on their tippy toes….

What perhaps wasn’t so positive (but ultimately maybe is in the hands of the organisers- the lack of marshals and the number one priority- Runner’s safety!) Now, it’s not like I was the only runner out there suffering. Everyone I passed or passed me was working incredibly hard. It was like a trail run! There were no smiles, laughter or jokes. It was all hard work!

After the 10KM marker, I just wanted to give up! I shed a few tears…..it was a terrible feeling. I have trained so hard, I wanted to do my PB. I was hoping for a better time tonight. (Sorry, coach Adli) We are runners and we expect more of ourselves after all that is why we do it and that is what fuels the fire to keep training……but I ‘hit the wall’.

However, on a more positive note, I was touched by all the cheers from passing runners, it made me feel positive even though I was struggling! I appreciate each and everyone of them and I am sorry I did not cheer back, I did in spirit, as always, though…..! Somehow, I was just focused on keeping one foot in front of the other, so that I won’t fall into any ‘longkangs’ or pot holes. I hope you enjoyed my stressed out pain face…lol…

The route just got tougher in the second half of the race that headed into the Technology Park Malaysia (MIMOS), I know that Halloween is coming soon, but do we really need to practice running in darkness for the occasion? This section was hilly, dark and it was drizzling too. It was like in a movie scene “Hantu Kak Limah” where the three main characters were running in the ‘kampung’ (village), running ‘lintang-pukang’ (run for your life!) because ‘Hantu Kak Limah’ (Kak Limah’s ghost/spirit) was chasing them. Indeed, the runners made it a point to stick together in groups in this particular section. A creepy, spooky feeling crept inside of me and it sent chills to my spine….eeeeeekkk…

Then at one point, we were led and were running on a pretty busy highway-Sg Besi highway. Even though, it was a short distance about 500meters but somehow I felt that the runners’ safety were put on high risk. There were cones and barricades to separate the traffic and runners, but somehow I felt ‘malang tidak berbau’ (That’s why it’s called an accident) Thank God there were no unwanted incidents reported.

Anyhow, the route was altered slightly after that. The hills are alive……The hills, how do I put this, stairway to hell! I could actually feel runners around me going, “ohhhhhh Noooooooooo!” as we climbed out, but we soldiered on. After winding around through parts of Bukit Jalil, traffic was in a stand still. At the junction of Calvary Church, there were lots of unhappy road users that were stuck for hours! Lots of the drivers were honking. Runners were terrified at this intersection. Then, I suddenly felt something shift in my body…If you’ve ever heard a runner talk about ‘hitting the wall’ or ‘bonking’, it was what exactly happened for the second time! My body just quit on me. Then, I’d switched gears in my brain…it’s now mental and endurance! I got this! I am not going to quit! Not now! Almost there…..I can! I will!

The first hill was easy and the first long incline was rough but I made it through it. Many runners passed me and I passed a few as well. We came to the turn around point which I had never run before and it was rolling HILLS! I ran up and over the first two sets and finally saw the turn around point and said (while pointing with my finger) “WE have to run all the way there?” I plowed through the next hill with strong legs and felt pretty good but wasn’t quite ready to push it. Then came the longest, flattest straight stretch of road that one could run on – a causeway/bridge with a long hill at the end. The straight stretch killed me and the hill was easy – go figure! Yeah right!

20KM went by in a bit of painful blur. I was just focused on keeping my legs moving. Then I saw, the magical creature……My unicorn…..ehhhhh, I meant the magical number 500 meters to go…. That moment…pure joy and happiness……but wait, a u-turn! OMG! It ain’t over, till it’s over….runners had to make a u-turn to get into the stadium and to the finishing line..

And there it was…….The National Stadium, Bukit Jalil. I did! I made it! I finished it! I was ecstatic! Tears of joy flowed through my cheeks! The most rewarding moment for me throughout this 21 KM Half Marathon was being able to run to the finishing line, inside the National Stadium. I felt relief while I lined up gratefully without any injuries (Thank you, God) and accepted my much deserved 21KM Half Marathon medal, picked my finisher Tee and went off in search for my ‘sole-mate’-aka hubby. We didn’t hang around long. Took off our shoes and walked barefooted to our car. With that said, good job to each and everyone of you for actually being out there running, walking , crawling and even pushing the strollers. YOU DID AWESOME!

The biggest thing I took away from this race was how wonderful the running community is. From the strangers we talked to during the race; the volunteers passing out water, cheering & encouraging us; the organizers; the singers on the course; to every single person who worked the expo and the event–they each played a role in my race. My friends who cheered me on during the race and my friends & family, especially my mum, who stayed until 1am to wait for my wassap message, saying that I have finished the race and that we were on our way home and my sis who was tracking me during the race were amazing. Thank you…. The sign posting for getting to the event was good, parking was plentiful and the signage for the actual race was decent as well with markers pretty much every 3km.

Be realistic! Was it really such a bad race? You are racing no one but yourself, so this time ‘yourself’ lost, next time ‘your other self’ may win……..see what I mean? Take the good runs with the bad, remember the highs and don’t dwell on the lows! Now excuse me while I go and do the happy pappy dance of joy!

Zumba @ Radical Fitness Studio

If you’ve ever watched a Zumba Class, you’ve probably noticed its uncanny resemblance to the dance floor of a popular club on a Saturday night. Instead of the grunts you’d hear at your typical cross fit or indoor ‘Hits’ training, a Zumba class boasts catchy dance music, clapping hands and even the occasional “woo!” or gasp of excitement from an enthusiastic participant. That’s what it’s all about……..

So, what do you do, the last day of your daughter’s PT3 examinations?

A “brain break”…I took her with me to Radical Fitness Studio for a Zumba session. Pretty much the most awesome workout ever. Danced to great music, with great people and burned a ton of calories without even realizing it.

Zumba is definitely fun and it is also a serious workout. Picture me at the end of my 1st class with my sister, Joanne in Abu Dhabi with my face roaring red and hair literally dripping wet not to mention my brain fried from the sheer concentration of trying to follow the steps! Despite this unattractive beginning, once I started with Zumba I honestly haven’t look back.

We had so much fun, Eza and Novia our dance instructors combined fun choreographies with an impressively wide repertoire of tracks. My daughter, Anjali had no problems picking up the routines and could do so at her own pace. The level was just right: interesting and high enough energy to get a good workout without leaving beginners behind.

So how did I stick with it so far? For a start, it gets easier and more and more fun- you’ll be surprised how quickly you get used to the steps and how your fitness improves.

Secondly, Radical Fitness Studio is conveniently close to my home at times that flow easily with my daily life.

Thirdly, the instructors and coaches are certified, well trained and experienced.

Finally, it’s great value for money and buying the flexible no expiry class cards (They offer walk-in rates, too!) helps me stay committed as well as saving money.

What are you waiting for?

Put on your dancing shoes and come join me at Radical Fitness Studio.

 

 

Seremban Night Run 2018 – Race Review

As with every adventure, there is so much I want to share. The race details needed to go up while still fresh in my mind.

Night running is a unique experience. Physically, mentally and in terms of your senses, it is another world. Last Saturday, I had the opportunity to be part of the first ever night run in Seremban, The Seremban Night Run 2018 together with 2,200 runners.

Nonetheless, I was thrilled at the idea of a large group of people forgoing sleep for their passion-running. I just had to be part of this experience.

The morning of the race day, while I was in the gym, training for the 10KM Seremban Night Run, I received a devastating text message, my friend, a good friend of mine who stays just the opposite of my house, whom I usually share my “makcik bawang” stories during events and gatherings at my Taman, she informed me that her hubby, who was only 42 years old, who suddenly got a stroke on Monday night, took his last breath at 9.13am on Saturday, 6 October. My eyes filled up with tears as I read her text message. It never occurred to me, how precious life was and how life is short! I find myself wishing it wasn’t real because he was young and my friend will be alone with her six year old son. She called me and said, “Chrisy, Saya redha, I am okay! I will be fine. See you when I get home”. She sounded strong. I truly admire her strength and courage! I picked up the pieces and pain and I shifted gears in my head and tried hard to focus on life! Yes, Life and tonight’s run, the Seremban Night Run. To me, it’s more than just a run, it’s the people and the opportunity to change lives! So, Abang Mus, I dedicate tonight’s run for you! Rest In Peace Bro-“Al-Fatihah”.

The night race was on, I felt strangely alive. There was something about having a group of strangers united through running, I even had the chance to bumped into my ex- student from Zenith International School, Yee Chee at the starting line, despite the late flag off timing, we were all in high spirits. The darkness of the night race also somewhat gave an atmosphere of fun and excitement. There was some jostling for position at the front and I was glad I was in the middle with the “fun” runners.

The course was enjoyable, it was a nice way to see Seremban town at night. As with all races it was packed at the beginning but thinned out slightly as the race went on, it was never lonely. After the first city section, I gracefully passed my old school KGV and ran proudly with my head held high. Then we passed Royale Chulan, where I saw a familiar face, Edward cheering with his team as the runners passed by. There was a slight incline near the Lake Garden. As the race proceeded, the path winded into several choke points, where some runners faced several problems of walkers holding up the way or fast runners trying to jostle their way through the narrow passages near Jalan Rahang.

I was not really watching the ground at all and it’s a good thing the route had been so well chosen, with good quality paths and roads of very footing or I would have been in a ditch with a broken ankle til’ morning! Well, that’s not true either- it was also excellently marshalled and I’m pretty sure the PDRM’s patrol car would have picked me up and got me home had I needed it! Kudos to all PDRM/traffic police/RELA! Thank you for keeping us, the runners safe all along the route.

There were two hydration points at intervals 5KM and 8KM, which I felt was just sufficient. Each hydration point had both options plain water and isotonic drink. Volunteers did an awesome job! Although people became a bit pushy around them which is never nice. I got a few unwanted elbows in my sides but nothing serious, thankfully.

This is a funny time where you are not really sure who is in front of you and who is behind. The next 5KM, I actually got a decent pace going. The organisers did a good job, roads and routes were well condoned, marshals were on standby and traffic police/ PDRM/RELA were placed at every traffic lights and junctions, routes and the course were bright and well lit.

Once I got over the 4KM mark, the route led us to Klana Resort Hotel, things started to look better (a.k.a down hills arrived) I started to pick up speed. The support was excellent though and the atmosphere of the runners and spectators was that of overwhelming joy and admiration. This was a fun race and I mean in the best way possible.

When you run long distance, you learn something very quickly……there is a lot of time to think. Tonight’s race. I had a ‘mixed feeling reaction’ kinda thing, thinking of my good friend, Ita, who just lost her love of her life. This race was the first race where I felt my mind didn’t really want to think or overthink, but instead just be right there, with my breath, and the strides for the moments. But after, I returned to my thoughts and they all came down to the fact that running is a metaphor for life. “One run can change your day, many runs can change your life”.

There is no such thing as perfection-just improvement. The best…….the worst…….thing about running us that you will never master it. You will never be perfect at it! You challenge yourself every time you lace your shoes! That is a gift!

You will have awesome runs when all the planets align and everything goes your way and you will have awful runs, when your feet feel like blocks of concrete and you just can’t catch your breath. On some runs, that voice in your head will tell you to stop less than 1KM in; on other runs, that voice in your head is cheering you on as you pass the 21KM mark. All you can do is just keep your eye on the prize, know that there will be setbacks and just keep running. Because in the end, running is its own reward! And like life, you get out of it exactly what you put into it!

Having the home-court advantage gave me the extra push I needed to finally get to the finish. And finish I did! I got my awesome medal, took the goodies and some photos and went home.

Overall, I think the Race Director and all who have been involved can be very proud of a well managed, enjoyable and safe event. I wasn’t able to “race” it, just running it was such a gift!

The 1st Negeri Sembilan Piano Festival 2018 – Festival Closing Concert Pianissimo

Pianissimo……means very soft or softly….

Just like the human body, the anatomy of an acoustic piano is quite fascinating! There are many different moving “body parts” and “limbs” that must work together perfectly to make the oh…….so wonderful noise that we call the piano music.

At the recent 1st Negeri Sembilan Piano Festival, which was held on the 29th September, Saturday at The Royale Chulan Hotel, Seremban, I had the opportunity to witness the festival closing concert ‘Pianissimo’. We were honoured to share this lovely evening with Tuanku Muhriz ibni Almarhum Tuanku Munawir , Yang di-Pertuan Besar of Negeri Sembilan and his wife.

The evening started with a gentle but well – preceded. To the classical concert goer, this appeared to be an ambitious programme and I might be as bold as to suggest that is this concert was planned in the standard format, the choice might limit its audience unless it were specifically targeted. On the other hand, this was a great success as it drew in a lot of young people (and other ages too!); largely because of the experimental interest and there is no doubt everyone was pleasantly surprised as The President of Euroasia, Ms Angel Lee’s programme was beautiful and absorbing.

Alluring and stupendous music score, exquisitely performed by Euroasia Patron YAM Tunku Zain Al-‘Abidin Ibni Tuanku Muhriz as well at the Sutera Ensemble and Young Talents of Negeri Sembilan.

What can I say……..Life and music are inseparable!

On a more esoteric level, the performers and musicians placed their music at the very heart of what they did and for most it was their “raison d’etre”. Music and music making, is what drives them to the exigencies on one’s ideals and aspirations as a musician. Thus, it is important that young musicians in conservatoire and those embarking on a professional career receive support and mentorship to enable them to balance their expectations with the realities of the profession today.

Taking my daughter, Anjali along was in itself an experiment for me and we both enjoyed the evening. (She has grown up thumping away at the piano and having to sit through numerous piano recitals that she would rather not go to, but it was successful and enjoyable for her as it was with other audience members who I am sure will now seriously consider going to and enjoying, a standard concert presentation of this sort of music.

The only traditional thing I had to do was to take the initiative of leading the applause as the audience didn’t quite know what to do at the end.

The programme ended at 10.15 p.m. with the award and prize giving ceremony for the Regional Round of the Malaysian Piano Competition 2018.

Piano concerts come and go, but this performance will surely linger in my mind forever.

Larian Merdeka 2018 (The good, the bad and the ugly)

Every once in a while, I will have a race that doesn’t go as planned. Larian Merdeka, was one of those!

Larian Merdeka was a big disappointment from start to finish. Information provided to the public was inadequate and slow and things got worse on event day!

Last weekend, we packed up the kids and headed off for a family adventure. In order to prepare for the fun, hubby and I registered our three children to run with us, if I am really determined to have fun, trust me, that’s the way to do it! Run with your kids….(oohhhh….and it’s healthy fun too, bonus! Not to forget, in conjunction of Malaysia Day and the feeling of patriotism and love for our New Malaysia.

From the very beginning of this race, it was trouble! Race pack collection was postponed several times and to make matters worst, at the eleventh hour. Reason given was that the flight shipment was delayed. T-shirts designs and sizes were insufficient and sizes were incorrect!

We arrived early on race day, managed to grab a quick bite with the kids and headed to Dataran Merdeka. There was a good amount of people of all ages. I love seeing families running together. The organisers informed that 13 thousand runners signed up for the run.

Legs were bounding, arms were pumping, and of course hearts were racing at the Larian Merdeka this past Saturday, September 15th. Love filled the air and the lungs of runners as they looped around the city of Kuala Lumpur roads in conjunction of Hari Malaysia, filled with pride and joy!

The Good, the bad and the ugly

Alright, let’s begin with a quick rundowns of the PROs:

  1. It was a night run. It had a totally different feel than a morning race would have, which I enjoyed it.
  2. Running in the heart of Kuala Lumpur city was splendid.
  3. Marshals and police were on standby all along the route
  4. Lucky for me, my hubby and kids are fast runners, we completed the run in 30 minutes, rushed to grab our medals and went home. (we were lucky to get our medals)

The bad

  1. I might be acting a little picky with this one, but I thought that it was poor management and crowd control caused frustrating bottlenecks, at 2km where the 10km, 5km and 3 km runners merged into one route. To make matters worst, a cement lorry headed the opposite direction was trying to make way to its destination! Aduhhhh….
  1. Water station was like a war zone. Everyone was pushing and shoving to get water. Runners even spilled water on other runners.
  2. Marshals were shouting at the top of their voices to inform runners which way to go, due to lack of markers and signages.
  3. 10 KM runners, had no timing chips. Many runners did not go through the 2nd loop due to confusions.
  4. As far as logistics goes, it was probably a disorganised race I’ve ever ran for 2018. To my opinion, there were too many runners.

The ugly

  1. The complaints ranged from insufficient medals to participants (a medal means a lot to a participant, a runner as an accomplishment and satisfaction to be a finisher)
  2. Being given unsuitable T-shirt sizes
  3. Flag off was delayed
  4. Program and Itenary was inaccurate
  5. No lucky draw as stated and promised by the organisers

What can I say….We all had them. They are inevitable. A part of life. Sometimes for no reason at all, nothing to point to or everything to point to. THE BAD RUN! We hate it but it’s bound to happen from time to time. Try to remember, you are not alone! Sometimes focus on the end game. Be present. The bad runs build our true strenght . As in life, when we have tough days, tough experiences, learn how to see the big picture. Bottom line?? Learn from the run (organisers as well as runners) Embrace the suck! and kick your next run in the teeth!

Dear organisers, it is all about mistakes, and learning from them. I happen to believe that there is no such thing as a bad run or race, as long as we learn from it. Yes, we all will experience runs and races we’d define as terrible or horrible. Chin up, they happen. But if you learn something- be it the management, the organising, logistics, pacing, mental focus, what to wear, whatever-those lessons prepare you for the better runs and races in the future.

Radical Fitness Center @ Plazo S2

If it were easy to stay fit and healthy, there would be less disease in the world and people would live much longer. Unfortunately, it gets more difficult as one gets older and it may require serious lifestyle changes. However, this does not mean that it can’t be done. If anything, there are probably several things you could be doing differently and there’s no reason you can’t give it a shot.

Come join me……Where? It’s just a stone throw’s away! Located at Plazo Seremban 2- “Radical Fitness Seremban”.

Radical Fitness Seremban supports the health and fitness needs of the community by providing quality facility, professional and friendly staff and programs in a unique and supportive environment.

What makes ‘Radical Fitness Seremban’ different:-

  • Personal training and fitness assessments to reach your goals
  • Unique medically-integrated programs
  • Fun-tastic activities and programs for a variety of ages and skills levels
  • Walk-ins and packages are available
  • Reasonable fees

Last Sunday, 9 September, I had the opportunity to join the zumba class. Pretty much the most awesome workout ever. I met Eza, the owner, a hip, hype and super cool person. I danced to great music, with great people all ages, from young to the young at heart too, a superb awesome instructor, Novia and burned a ton of calories without even realizing it…I love Zumba! I will always cherish my first zumba. It was with my sister, Joanne. I visited her in Abu Dhabi and she introduced to me Zumba..Ever since then, I am hooked to it and Zumba became my fun aerobic workout that mixes in dance moves. If I am not running, Zumba is my next best thing!

Radical Fitness Seremban offers not just Zumba but lots more programs. See you at Lot 76, Jalan Komersial Saujana 3, Plazo- Pusat Komersial Saujana S2 Heights or call 012-6968156 or 012-2233318.

It takes change to make change! Take the first step, come join me:- Being healthy and fit isn’t a fad or a trend. Instead, it’s a lifestyle!