Saturday, February 28, 2009

February 2009 - Training Log

(Click Excel Sheet for enlarged view)

For the month of February I have the following figures to validate for my Training Log in preparation for the LA Marathon Race Walk Division scheduled for May 25, 2009;

February 1-28, 2009
Distance = 309.30 km
Duration = 36.9880 hours
Average Speed = 8.36 km / hr
Average Pace = 7.18 mins / km
Calories Burn = 28,053 kcal
Total distance covered since April 27, 2007 = 5,278.65 km

Thursday, February 26, 2009

RoadID - Practical and Fasionable Running Gear

In one of my regular visit at the blog site of, I noticed a widget of “ROAD ID”. I liked the product that they were selling which was a “Wrist ID” you can personalised with all the required emergency information laser engraved that should by any chance during your running or any other physical activity encounter an accident, such infomation will be readily available which is of utmost importance. The “ROAD ID” is not only a "must have"running gear for safety reasons, but, is fashionable as well.

Complete details of the product can be seen at the website

The product cost $19.99 per piece. The downside for us here in the Philippines is the shipping cost of $12.95 (almost 2/3 of the cost of the product. So as to take opportunity of the shipment and reduce its cost, I ordered 2 pieces. I believe it is a wise investment for runners.

Go check the product!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Beware: "Addicts On The Run"

Today 24Feb09, I came across a very interesting article featured by Philippine Daily Inquirer (PDI) in its Lifestyle and Wellness Section written by MITCH FELIPE with a title “How to prevent injuries among runners”.

The end intention of the article is on prevention of injuries by runners. However, the author MITCH FELIPE got my full attention on two (2) subtitles within the article which I would like to quote herewith-

Running Addiction
Running addiction has been defined in the book “Psychology of Running” as “a psychological and/or physiological addiction to regular running that is characterized by withdrawal symptoms after 24 to 36 hours without running.”

According to the book “Exercise Psychology” by Joe Willis and Linda Campbell, hardcore running addicts can still engage in this activity despite tendonitis, stress fractures and crippling injuries.

In a study about negative addiction on running published in The Physician and Sport Medicine journal, addicted runners believe they cannot live without running daily. If it is missed, withdrawal symptoms will be experienced, such as anxiety, guilty, irritability, tension, discomfort, lack of appetite, sleeplessness and headaches.When a running addict or a very active person suddenly discontinues his or her active lifestyle because of a serious injury, one may experience a condition called “athlete’s neurosis,” where one suffers from neurotic disorders such as anxiety and reactive depression.

Levels of running involvement
Let’s take a look at the four levels of running involvement (also published in the book “Psychology of Running”) and things that are detrimental to your health and life:

Type I: Running as the most important commitment: Runs 40 miles (64 km) or more each week, runs intervals, keeps a log, races at least monthly, reads running literature weekly and more than 50 percent of friends are runners.

Type II: Running as a crucial commitment: Runs 11 to 40 miles (17.6 to 60 km) a week, runs intervals, doesn’t taper during winter or bad weather, races occasionally, maintains a log, reads less than weekly and fewer than 50 percent of friends are runners.

Type III: Running as a hobby: Runs 11 to 40 miles (17.6 to 60 km) a week but doesn’t exhibit many of the associated behaviours, such as racing frequently, keeping a log or running intervals.

Type IV: The occasional runner: Usually runs less than twice a week, runs less than 11 miles (17.6 km) per week and tapers in winter and bad weather.

I will at this stage and for the meantime cut short on the article to find as to which category do I belong. Without any doubt or difficulty to evaluate my condition, I diagnose myself as “Type I Running Addict” What level do you belong to? Is my condition bad or good?The author then presented three sub-topics which could provide answer to the question above. I again quote herewith;

Recognize your level of commitment
Running coaches and athletes can sustain the type I level of commitment mentioned above because of their experience and body type. It has also been their way of life and source of income. But if you are just a regular exerciser and a beginner in running, be realistic in setting your target mileage per week to avoid serious problem.

You might have heard about an athlete who regularly wins during races and does more than 80 km a week. Doing the same thing in order to win a race or improve running time might result in knee injuries which will terminate your goals.

Consider your goals and fitness
Before joining a full marathon, plan the appropriate number of miles per week suited for your endurance, speed, body structure and lifestyle. It should be combined with sufficient recovery, cross-training activities, proper hydration and diet.

It’s safe to join races once a month especially if you are running for less than a year.

Ask help from professionals
Consult a physician if condition can sustain this type of activity. If you are overweight, consult weight loss professionals. Attend running clinics with a credible team who will educate you on the basics of running, programming and nutrition.

Email the author at

Having diagnosed ourselves what then will be our prognosis? “A Running Addict who refuse rehabilitation” or "A running Addict on denial stage"?

Sunday, February 22, 2009

RUNew - Great Route - Walk Don't Run

It was an early wake-up call today February 22, 2009 for the RUNew (Run For New, Active and Healthy Lifestyle and Save Lives) as sponsored by Asian Hospital and Medical Center and organized by RunRio held at McKinley Hills at Taguig City.

At 4:45am I, my son Dax and daughter-in-law Pam where already entering the parking building. Lucky for us we were just a couple of minutes ahead before the queue of cars started to built up at the entry booth of the parking building as participants have started arriving one after the other. Nice Parking Building, but, for a fixed P50.00 parking fee it was a bit expensive on local standards. But, why fret for the place was well secured and safe for your car and valuables to give you a peace of mind during the race.

At the assembly area there was a big projection screen, tents, booth, and a number of marshals and ushers of the event and the MC was already making some announcement. What I saw at the grounds when I arrived was a feeling of a well organized race event at hand. While waiting for the start for the start of the race, I tried to look for some familiar faces and saw only Alex and Elaine. My mind was set for a 5:30 am start, however, as the time came nearer, the announcer was mentioning a 5:45am start or a 15 minutes delay (this is my only negative comment of the event).

At 5:45am the 15K event started. The route went to a new twist, turn, up and down the McKinley Hill complex which was not used before. This is definitely a much better route inside the McKinley grounds compared to those used on previous events. At the 1Km distance marker, Jay (Prometheus Cometh) overtook and greeted me and boy was he flying. All along the route there were enough water stations and marshals to guide the participants.

At the Bayani Road about 400meters before entering the Heritage West Cemetery there was an accident involving two motorcycles colliding head on. Fortunate for the victims there was a ready ambulance with paramedics at hand supposedly for the race event who were more than kind and willing to assist them.

Again, as a new innovation, the route turned to Heritage West Cemetery for a round-about before proceeding to the East Heritage Cemetery’s usual round-about. This innovation is great as the race was confined to a private road free of vehicles. Just before exiting West Heritage I overtook Jinoe (Manokan Express) and Queenie. They were a sight to behold, love birds running together. Why did I not do this one when I was young?

My greatest high of the event was from 11th to the 14th Km distance markers as this was the hilly part of the Bayani Road and I was overtaking those that were running as against my Race Walking. By the 14Km it was back to a downhill route that some of those that I overtook gained on me. Race Walking on downhill is very difficult. Then finally the finish line was on sight and I saw Bards (Banana Running) and her friends were with my son Dax and in-law Pam cheering me. It was a nice feeling, thank you guys.

I crossed the finish line in 01h51m34s for the 15Km on full race walking style placing 339 out of 389 finishers. It was 8 minutes faster than my simulated run last 15Feb09 which was done lonesome. The crowd and the runners were the contributing factor to gain speed. As a summary, my walking was 50 ranks better than the others who were running. Next in sight is the CONDURA 21K Skyway Run For The Whale Shark scheduled for March 22, 2009 this one will also have anexciting rout, a first time locally a race will be using the skyway. It will be another Walk Don’t Run for me.

Congratulations to my daughter-in-law Pamela who was 6th Place in the 5K Female non-MD category with a time of 00h 28m 24s. She out run her husband Dax by exactly 6 minutes flat.

In my vocabulary, RUNew was a great and well organized event. Kudos to Rio Dela Cruz for another job well done. Complete offcial results of the race can be seen at This is where I think the organizers are best ... results are posted in shortest possible time after the race.

Friday, February 20, 2009

RUNew 15 km - Race Walking Basic Technique

Part of my Training Plan for the Los Angeles Marathon Race Walk Division is a step ladder distance progression on the road scenario. While I have in the recent past simulated such scope of training on my own on long distance sessions particularly on Sundays, the race atmosphere and crowd actions and reactions have been missing. I am fortunate that this year, there are now more events of 15km and 21km (The Condura Run – Skyway Run for the Whale Shark) on the pipeline for me to incorporate in my training plan.

This Sunday, February 22, 2009 at 5:30 RUNew (Run for New, Active and Healthy Lifestyle and Save Lives) with Coach Rio as event organizer to be held at McKinley Hill, Taguig City is a great opportunity for me to simulate a race scenario on a 15km distance. As planned, I shall from hereon do the events I am entered into by execution of Race Walking as defined by USATF to be;

- Progression of steps so taken that the walker makes contact with the ground so that no visible (to the human eye) loss of contact occurs.

- The advancing leg must be straight (i.e. not bent at the knee) from the moment of first contact with the ground until in the vertical upright position.

So if you notice somebody running a different style on 15km event on Sunday, that is me guys. Just do not mind me. See you on Sunday at the finish line!

Monday, February 16, 2009

"Trash Talking" - A Technical Foul?

Sometime last week, Macmac Cardona of Talk & Text PBA basketball team was very much in the news for his alleged “trash talking” which the other team (Alaska) was very much vocal in their accusation. According to Alaska, Cardona should be slapped with a technical foul and repetition of such action warrants removal from the game. I hope my version of “trash talking” will not put me on a similar situation.

Today, 16Feb09, I wanted to start my regular morning session at the Ultra earlier than the usual as I have a Manila/Iloilo/Manila travel for the day. I arrived Ultra at 4:30am and was shocked in the condition that I saw the Ultra was at the said time.

My trash talk is not how filthy and littered was the oval (although it was really on such a condition). I have full confidence that within the day whatever trash and litters will be eventually cleaned and by mid-day the oval will be back to its usual cleanliness.

However, what really touched me today was the amount of PLASTIC and STYROPHOME the littered trash consisted of. On a conservative estimate, I would say 90% of the litters are plastics and Styrophome. I am not a radical environmentalist of any kind as I am just an ordinary John as any. However, just to think that this scenario is being replicated all over the country at every kind of big gatherings, I fear to wonder how much volume we contribute to our environmental pollution. We would long have been gone in this life but these Plastics and Styrophome will still be around somewhere, somehow, and definitely for quite a time.

As runners and health enthusiasts we all are, let us do our own fair share in minimizing if not totally refraining from the usage of such pollutants. To event organizers and sports complex administrator, maybe just maybe, you could require the usage of degradable materials as a condition in leasing out your sports complex or planning an event.

This “trash talking” is my way of reminding all of us that we have a SOCIAL OBLIGATION and RESPONSIBILITY to our community. I hope it does not earn me a technical foul.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Simulated 15Km - Race Walk for RUNew

Having just arrived from Cebu, I knew I would not be able to join the POWER RUN which was schedule today 15Feb09 at the SM Mall of Asia. As such, I have to find myself a good Sunday run on my own.

Considering that I have already registered for the RUNew which will take place at Mckinley Hill at the Fort Bonifacio and having decided to do the 15K on Race Walk style all the way, I told myself to simulate a 15K Race Walk on the same site to be able to set a target time for next Sunday’s run.

(Click on the photo for an enlarged view)

At 5:02am and completed 15.9km in 02h06m17s for an average speed of 7.55km/hr with a pace of 7.94min/km and burned 1584 Kcal.

Accordingly, my 15Km time was 01h58m24s. Hopefully I should be able to duplicate and better yet target a finishing time of 01h55m00s on Sunday’s RUNew 15km Race Walk style.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

"Double Crossed" - Mactan Straits

(Click on the map for enlarged view)

With all the planning and preparation done the night before, I found myself having difficulty to sleep as my mind has already started the planned run ahead of physical body which was still in the stage of trying to sleep. On 12Feb09 at 1:30 am I was already awake and trying my very best to go back to sleep. Then I decided instead of fighting the urge to gain sleep, I might just as well put myself in a relax stage by watching TV. At 4am my alarm clock rang, there was no need for this as I was still awake then and I started to dress still discussing with myself on what time really to start.

At 4:28 am off I started selecting the alternative to RUN instead of RACE WALK as I was unfamiliar with the territory not wanting to attract unnecessary attention in the street. The early stage of the run was easy as I was still fresh and strong and the apprehension then was more on the security as it was still dark and that I was meeting on interval stages groups of young and not so young who are intoxicated as it was just the time the bars and whatever fun places they might have been from was just closing. However, as I reached my 4th km mark, I more or less have gained security confidence.

When I reached the Old Cebu-Mactan Bridge it was still very dark that as much as I wanted to do some picture taking, it was a futile effort as the results taken were not good so I just took a couple to satisfy my journal. Just as I have reached the Mactan side, my left knee started to experience pain for reasons maybe that I am more use to Race Walking than Running. The latter sustain more impact on the knee as you stride whilst in Race Waking the impact is more on the heels as you are required to execute a straight forwarding leg all the time creating a shock of solver effect for the knee. Never mind the sways and apprehension of getting unnecessary second glances from passers-by, I decided to continue the route on Race Walk style to lessen the pain.

It was still dark and when I reached the statue of Marcelo Fernan at the Mactan side just prior to ascending the bridge to go back to Cebu side. I have to take a souvenir photo so I did a short stop then immediately proceeded to the Marcelo Fernan Bridge.

I told myself to take matters easy and savour the personal satisfaction in crossing the last bridge before heading back to Marriott Hotel.After about a kilometre in crossing the MF Bridge, daylight was already at hand and I started to meet from the opposite direction runners/joggers. Now I told myself I am in good company.

I made a stop at the Cebu International Convention Center (CICC) and Shoe Mart to take some photo at the same time take some of my HAMMER GEL and much needed sip from my hydration pack as I was then sweating heavily.

Just about a kilometer before I reach the hotel my knee started to give me pain again. This was what I have to pay for a mistaken decision to RUN instead of RACE WALK in which I could in any case obtained the targeted pace and speed anyway.

Then the final glory was reaching the entry post of Marriott Hotel the feeling of “Double Crossed” Mactan Strait was fulfilled using the old and the new bridge. I have covered a distance of 20.1 km in 2h41m40s at an average speed of 7.46km/hr or pace of 8.04min/km and burned 2246 Kcal. Will I do it again? The answer is a definite YES.

Cebu-Mactan-Cebu Bridge Run - Planning Stage

Sometime early February I visited the blog of BananaRunning (Bards) and she was asking for some tips on where to run in Cebu as she was scheduled to visit the area sometime in February. There were quite a number of suggestions from her friends and one of them was crossing the two bridges connecting Cebu and Mactan Island, the old Cebu Mactan Bridge and the new Marcelo Fernan Bridge.

A good run if I may say so. I then posted a comment to BannaRunning since I will as well be in Cebu from 11-13February if there was by any chance she would also be there so that we could run together the route. Unfortunately, Bards will only be in Cebu by 3rd/4th week of February. However, the idea already was in my mind. Come what may, I shall run the said route.

On 11th February after completing my business with University of Cebu President Atty. Augusto Go, I requested his staff if their car could “run the route” with me from Marriott Hotel then to the old Cebu Mactan Bridge to Marcelo Fernan Bridge and back to the hotel. Any adventure needs a prudent preparation. The purpose was to familiarize myself with the route, find out the distances, see possible problems and plan in general that when I do actually take the run on 12th February morning risks have been considered for safe run. With the traffic and everything we left the hotel at 5:45 and was back 7:10 (very bad traffic).

I then plotted my planned route in and it would look something the picture below;

On the car’s odometer it registered about 22 km, however, I think on an actual run it should be 1-2 km shorter as the curves will be cut. My intention is to start at 4:30am to give me enough time to prepare for my business meeting which is scheduled at 9:30am.

The planning stage is complete and now the implementation stage is at hand. I have to take a good night rest and will provide the actual progress of the run later.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Tribute to a Daughter

February 10, 1977 or 32 years ago my 2nd child was born and it was a daughter and we named her MARY DAWN.

As any other parent we have undergone the complete cycle from birth, toddler, grade school, high school, college, medical school. What I just mentioned is one long sentence to describe the cycle a parent has to complete in raising a child.

Then in September 2003 it was time to say goodbye as she was then to start her medical exams and residency in the USA. Time has lapsed too fast. After almost 5 years, she has her own house in Riverside California, married and a full pledge practising medical physician at the Riverside.

As father and daughter, we have had our own share of issues and differences. But, she will always be my little girl and will always love her come what may. I love you and happy birthday DAWN! When can I expect my grandchild from yourend?

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Benchmarking - 15K Race Walk

Last Saturday 7Feb09, I did my weekly long walk with the intention to determine my relax road Race Walking time for 15K and establish the same as my benchmark figure for the forthcoming RUNew 15K which I intend to do on Race Walk version instead of Running.

At 5:51am without a fix route in mind to take, temperature at 27C and with a light rainy weather, I told myself to decide what street to take as I go along the way. Further, I would like to see how my run would look like should the same be imposed on the Earth Google. The picture above is how it looked like. (Click on the photo view to enlarged photo/details)

In the end, I made a total distance of 16.7km in 2.125hrs for an average speed of 7.86km/hr at a pace of 7.63 minutes/km and burning in the process 1661 calories.

As for my 15K benchmark data the duration was 1h54m50s for an average speed of 7.83km/hr at a pace of 7.65 minutes/km. I was a bit disappointed of the result as it was way below my previous average, but, why complaint I just came back from a heart procedure. I still have 14 days to come up with a lower figure at RUNew 15K on February 22, 2009 at McKinley Hill, Taguig City.

Thanksgiving - Answered Prayers

It has been said often that we always pray and seek for God’s help and assistance whenever we have a problem and most in particular when we are sick. I am no different and prayed a lot prior to my angioplasty. Having undergone the procedure successfully and now fully recovered, it is but fitting to give a THANKSGIVING to our creator for answered prayers.

On 7Feb09 at 11:30am a THANKSGIVING MASS was held at Paragon Plaza which was followed by a simple lunch and get together. What better way to celebrate the occasion but with my Office Staff, Golfing Buddies, Bald Running Team and Other Runners, Couples For Christ Household, Tekton Guild, Paragon Plaza Community, Friends, Relatives and my Family. I need not name those who have shared this precious moment with me. From the bottom of my heart, thank you! God is Good, all the time.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

UAAP Track and Field - Rizal Memorial Complex

For almost eight (8) months now that I have been using Ultra Oval as my usual venue for my daily exercise, I have shared the track in the mornings with the (UP) University of the Philippines, Track and Field Varsity Team for both male and female who are under coach Rio De la Cruz and coach Elma Muros Posadas. During the period, although I do not know each individual member of team by their name, their faces are so familiar to me that I feel a sense of attachment and promised myself to visit them on the 1st day of competition for the 74th season of (UAAP) University Athletic Association of the Philippines at the RIZAL MEMORIAL STADIUM on 5Feb09.

I hate to confess that in my lifetime it is only today that I got the opportunity to go inside the RIZAL MEMORIAL STADIUM or RIZAL MEMORIAL COMPLEX (as it is known at present). RMC is considered the oldest sports complex in Asia which was built in 1934 with a seating capacity of 30,000 people. The present state of the stadium is definitely below par from the other sports complex in Asia, but, the HISTORY of the stadium is so rich in the 75 years of its existence.

Of course what is close to my heart is the RACE WALKING event wherein the two UP female members GERALDINE and JICA (family names I do not know) have shared with me quite a number of laps in the Ultra Oval that I feel a part of their effort to attain glory for their school. My intention was to provide support and cheer on their event. Further, I did offer them an open challenge that should they be able to land on the top 3 positions in the finals, an agreed reward amongst us shall be given to them by me.

As it was only 1pm when I arrived I was able to see the eliminations of the female 100 meter dash. I was so excited to witness 2 out of 3 UP female entries were able to qualify for the finals. I kept on glancing and asking Coach ELMA the chances which I hope I did not get into her nerve. She asked me to promise her that I’ll stay and watch the finals. As the 100 meter finals was slated prior to the Walk Event , I was more than happy to say yes. Sad to say that both UP finalist did not make the top 3 positions but as I understand being qualified for the finals already earned them for their school points which will be added on the overall standing. Already an accomplishment.

At 3:05pm the 5000 meters Finals for Race Walk started and at this time MICHAEL who is also a race walker and a member of the Philippine Air Force was seated with me giving me live commentaries on his experience and feeling on a completion as the same has had the honour to represent the country in events in South East Asia. He even pointed out to me the different form and styles of the other participants. Both Geraldine and Jica were visibly tense and stiff in their first 200 meters. Then the worst accidental error occurred when Jica stepped on the shoes of Geraldine (of all people her team mate) from there on it was catching up rather than full concentration on the race. MY TEAM (if I may be allowed to say so) landed 6th (Geraldine) and 7th (Jica). Again, with the point system, I would say an accomplishment.

The girls did not beat me on our private challenge, but still out of the joy for the experience I had for the day, I gave them a little consolation prize for allowing me to be part of the race. I am proud of you girls and wish you a better performance on your event on Sunday for the 10000 meters. RELAX and ENJOY the race. (easy for me to say – what if I am the one to compete?)

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

5000 kilometers in 648 days

After updating my runs today to my personalized own matrix which is in an Excel based data sheet, it just dawned on me that not only was my run yesterday signalled my full recovery, it was also a very significant as  I have broken the 5000 km barrier.

Yes my friends, after religiously tracking/recording my daily distances since April 27, 2007, I have reached exactly 5,004.4 kilometers on February 3, 2009. That was in 648 days or 01 year 09 months 07 days.

27Apr07 to 31Dec07 2007 = 1,421.26 km
01Jan08 to 31Dec08 2008 = 3,297.78 km
01Jan09 to 03Feb09 2009 = 280.96 km
01y 09m 07d (648days) = 5,004.40 km

From April07 to June08 I was using the Nike+ and bought during the period a total of three (3)units as the same keep on breaking. From July08 to Jan09 I have shifted to Polar RS200sd which has made my monitoring easy and detailed. From 01Feb-present I have just shifted to Polar RS800CX with G3 GPS system.

I have all the detailed figures on daily basis at that. More data gathering was from July08 to present as I was already using a computerized monitor Polar as against may early runs when I was using only the Nike+. Basically it was RUNNING from Apr07 until about June08 when I started doing RACE WALKING and since August 2008 it has been mainly Race Walking that I have gotten myself involve with.

The only way to be motivated is monitoring your performance and mileage. I hope to reach the 10,000 km mark by December of 2010. I pray for  good health to accomplish this goal.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Listen To Your Body - Fully Recovered

After a week of listening to my body, as planned and having given myself an early bedtime the night before, action plan for the day is an 80% speed walk effort of my full physical capability for a mid-distance.

I was already at ULTRA OVAL by 5:00am but it took me a while to start my speed walk as I was trying to make sure that I had my GPS connected with the satellite and that my preferred settings and view on my Polar RS800C is correctly set to.

5:06am I was off and building gradual pace. This morning was already hot and humid even though it was still fully dark. Sad to say all the signs for an early summer is at hand. I was expecting a full oval, however, to my surprise it was quite empty, I was wondering where have all the UAAP track athletes gone to considering their actual yearly meet will be opening on Thursday which will run from 5-7th February.Maybe.... everybody is on their rest day before the actual competition?

When I finally did hit the 5 km stage I started to put more effort to gain the most of the WR Plan.By the time I hit the 10km stage, things were starting to be quite the ordinary, time seems to go slow and the round about becoming boring. However, on my 12km, Atty. Elaine joined me and in as much that I was in my fast pace, and she was on her recovery run we decide to go side by side at the same time talk of family like and raising a teen aged daughter. With an interesting topic, wow, time passed by faster and with the speed being maintained as well. I overshot my targeted 15km and would like to thank Atty. Elaine for a very interesting chit chat and company.

I completed the distance=16.60km, duration= 01h48m18s (1.8050h), speed=9.20km/hr, pace= 6.52 min/km and burned 1443 Kcal.

I can now say that I have fully recovered from my angioplasty and am ready to start by next week on the Training Plan as prepared by Major Espejo for my LA Marathon (Walk Race Division) scheduled for May 25, 2009. I shall continue to LISTEN TO MY BODY for it constantly communicates with you, it’s a matter of understanding and tuned in on the same frequency. I am back!

Sunday, February 1, 2009

A Round of Golf With Fun and Laughter

In my rehab plan to return to my previous race walking form, I have provided for a series of rest days with some cross training of golf games to break any possible rigid pressure to my blood circulations and built up my upper body strength.

After more than a month of not having played golf, last Saturday 31Jan09, I was able to play a round with my golfing buddies at Valley Golf and Country Club at Antipolo. The group was already complete of the foursome players as I have been regularly absent so I was an extra number for the day. To accommodate me to play with the group, we have to play fivesome players which is only allowed at the Executive Course. The South Course allows only foursome players.

Maybe things turned out better, as to my surprise because of the recent much published incident about De La Paz and Pandaganan encounter, the club has implement a very strict tee time policy for the front and back nine of the South Course. This resulted to a very congested condition at the South Course leaving the Executive Course much faster and convenient to play at.

The Group was composed of MAX CHUA, HENRY GO, MAX DEL ROSARIO, NONOY CARPIO and myself. We started our game at the Executive Course front nine at about 6:45am. We could have started 15 minutes earlier, but, as customary the handicap negotiation took a lot of time involving so much sad stories and arm twisting before we could agree on the handicap for our usual small betting.

I was very intimidated on my first tee shot having not played for quite some time. As expected the first shot was wayward but in all fairness I was able to recover and even made a decent bogey on the 1st hole.

Golf with close friends is a time to let go of your hang-ups, problems, worries, etc., and you take the opportunity to crack jokes and enjoy the company just like small children laughing and making fun of one another. These are not the real part of a proper golf game, but, this is what a RELAX and FUN GOLF is all about. From hole no. 1 until the 18th hole so much fun, stories, and jokes has been shared that the score was not really that important but it was the joy of the company.

However, in the end before going home you still need to account if you did win or lose money from the friendly game. Today, I am so happy to say that I made a little pocket money from my best friend NONOY CARPIO (he is the spice of my life) . Sad to say I will miss him and his family next week for the “Thanksgiving Mass”. His son, CARLO CARPIO just made a “hole in one” last week at the South Course Hole no. 4 using a seven iron. Congratulations! You still owe us dinner!

My front nine score was terrible 16 over par but my back nine was only 8 over for a total of 24 over par. Not really my standard, but, what can you expect with no practise. However, the FUN and LAUGHTER shared cannot be measured. To the group, thank you for a great game. Max Chua was the big winner. We need to reduce your handicap on the next game.

The Honeymoon Run - Polar RS800CX

After having written yesterday about the Polar RS800CX with G3(GPS Sensor) and getting to know the unit for about an hour before sleep, I just could not wait for day break to try out the unit like a groom to a bride on their honeymoon night.

At 5am off I went to Ultra Oval only to be disappointed upon arrival that the oval is closed to the general public as a special exclusive event was scheduled from 5:30-11:00am. Disappointed as I was, no factor can stop me to make my walk and to try the unit. I boarded my car and went straight to Bonifacio High Street, my usual alternative venue whenever the Ultra Oval is closed.

After getting the unit match/learn from the sensors, I started my recovery/rehab race walk bearing in mind that it has been only 10 days since my angioplasty procedure. Summary of my Race Walk is for the day are the following details, duration of 1.3511 hrs (01h21m04s), a distance of 10.30 Km, speed of 7.62km/hr, and pace of 7.87min/km. A great number of detailed information and analysis are available as recorded and downloaded to Polar Pro Trainer Software 5 . At this early honeymoon stage, I would say that the data gathering and report sharing is the major strength of the RS800CX.
One great feature of the software is that you could share your run to show the exact location, distance, lap, and even the altitude which can be exported to a Google Map.

I still need a number of days to get use to and be able to get familiar (mastering will definitely take at least a month’s time) for the different features of the unit and software. The magic word is “Mastering” otherwise its just like owning a great race horse only to be used for pleasure riding than what the particular breed was meant to be.

I am still awaiting support from Polar USA if I could transfer my recorded training records from June 2008 to January 2009 from to PPT5.