the new balance real run, singapore

The hubby was real lucky to be on a business trip to Singapore at the same time this race was happening.  Oh wait, scratch that... he intentionally searched for a race that would coincide with his business trip and he was luck to find the New Balance Real Run.  This happened last 17th of October, and it was the first out-of-the-country trip we've had as a married couple (enter *squee*).  Oh, by the way, thanks to our friend Acid, for helping out with the registration!

I would've posted earlier but I wanted pictures.  The photos are from my LC-A camera, so it took a while to have the film developed and scanned.  The digicam we brought decided that it liked Singapore so much that it chose to not come with us to the trip back home.  I digress.  On to the photos and the race.

We got to the race area before the sun even came up.  Before that, we were in a cab that got lost.  But the driver was kind enough to give us a discount because we literally went in a huge circle before we got to our destination.  There were already a lot of runners assembling.  And we feared that we wouldn't have enough time before the race gunned off.  Well, mainly because nature called and well, this was the queu: 

Then the announcer started counting down and pee'd or not pee'd, runners started darting for the starting line.  Soon, the area was cleaned out save for some moral-support givers as myself.  The thing about the race in Singapore vs. here in Manila is that I was surprised by the scarcity of finish line waiters.  I suppose that either those who support these runners support by actually running with them, or well, no one had much patience for waiting.  That aside, I perched myself by the finish arc and waited.

After over an hour, finishers came heading back.  The sun was already up.  It was darn hot and dry.  However I chose to keep the jacket on for fear of making my tank-top-tanline any worse than it already is (I've come close considering doing the finish-line-waiting in a bikini top).  Chips clocked in at 01:37:07 for the Men's Open.  It was honestly difficult spotting him because he kind of looked like he was a local.  It's mighty easier making him out out of a running crowd here in Manila.  Some post-race photos taken while the hubby falls in line for his goody bag:

Since the roads were closed for about another hour or two, we decided to follow all the other finishers out to get a cab somewhere else.  Where that was, we didn't really know.  We ended up walking for like 2 more kilometers, with practically no cab in sight.  Virtually lost and tired, we boarded a bus with some other runners (it seemed to be headed back to downtown Singapore).  The bus driver was really kind enough to point us to the right stop and when we thought all hope was lost, we finally got a cab.


It was a great experience, out last day in Singapore.  Back at the hotel, all we had to do was pack and grab a hearty lunch before heading off to the airport.  Another good job, Team Chips!

pasta, chicken and potatoes

What?  Another recipe post?  For real?  Yes, people.  It's rather simple and man, if I could do it, I'm sure ANYONE can.  Thanks to my sister for introducing me to the world of pasta-cooking.  It's odd really that I actually find myself at the kitchen.  My mother never knew it could happen in this lifetime.  But I guess the universe does perform miracles.  Or maybe because it's Christmas.  See the tree bokeh in the background?  *insert grin*

What's in it: Olive oil, corned tuna (smallest can), 1 small tomato, 3-4 cloves garlic, basil leaves, a bit of finely chopped onions, parmesan cheese, salt and pepper to taste.
  • In a deep non-stick pan, sautee the chopped garlic and the onions using the olive oil.  In a few moments the aroma will fill the entire kitchen (in our case, the entire condo - mental note, keep bedroom door closed).
  • When the garlic is on the road to browning, dunk the corned tuna into the pan.  You can try adding spicy corned tuna if it suits your taste.  After a bit, the chopped tomatoes could be tossed in as well.  Just stir them around the pan with a woden spoon, adding salt and pepper.
  • Once you could smell the tuna cooking nicely, the noodles can come in.  Oh, lower the fire too.  Would suggest to include the noodles in batches, so you can tell if you have enough of the flavour to go around.  Unlike what happened to me, where I realized midway that I had too much noodle and too little "sauce".  Thanks Chips, for being overly excited about dumping all the noodles in.
  • Anyway, if you go the careful route, you don't need to worry about adding and adjusting.  When the noodles are nicely coated and tossed around, drizzle parmesan and sprinkle the basil leaves (we chopped them too).
  • Add salt and pepper if needed, and you should be all good.
What's in it:  well, umm... just pesto, really.  We used thigh fillets.  I'm usually a breast fillet person, but they didn't have them in the supermarket.  Chips says the thighs have more flavor.  Anyway, what to do:
  • Work in the pesto (it came in a bottle already, from the trusty supermarket) into the chicken with your hands.  Massage into the crevices.  Chips usually does this because my long nails sever the meat.  You can add salt if you want.
  • Have this sit in a bowl for a while, in the refrigerator.  In the meantime, you can cook something else - like the pasta.  Or the potatoes.
  • After the pesto and chicken's alone time, time to pan-grill it.  You can let them lie on a dry Teflon pan or for the yummier route, melt butter on the pan then cook the chicken there.
  • Cook until brown.  Tada!
What's in it:  the cute little button potatoes, pepper (not ground), salt, 1-2 cloves garlic.  Online, they recommend having a bay leaf as well (but I only realized that a bay leaf was the same as laurel, which we had, after I cooked it).
  • In a little pot, submerge the button potatoes (wash them first! no need to peel) in water.  They don't need to be swimming.  Add salt generously, and a bunch of those black pepper round things.
  • The garlic just needs to be chopped in halves or quarters, and plunked into the water. Toss together with the bay leaf, if you have such.  I didn't get to, but it turned out pretty fine.
  • Bring it to a boil and just fork them once in a while to see if they've become softer.
  • Once you feel it's done, drain everything.  It's actually ready to serve, but we chose to toss it around a buttered pan with more salt and some ground pepper.  You can make incisions so the butter could seep in.  Tada! another.
Yes, I proclaim myself as a domesticated goddess.  Haha.  Though I suck at cleaning the floor.  I'll just cook (omigod, I can't believe I just said that).

i ran the slowest 5k of his life.

We were almost late for the race.  On top of that, I forgot my iPod.  On top of which, I didn't think I could possibly do a 5k after just ONE stab at a 3k.  I was secretly hating myself for agreeing to run this, but oh well, what can I do.  My other self said I was competitive.

We met up with Chips' friend, Alo, who was also running 5k.  Heading over to the starting line, it was already jam-packed with people.  A sea of green - old people, young people, babies even.  There was a big and small category and some baby trollies actually had race numbers.  I had a brief vision of Chips actually doing such a thing when we have a kid.  Shake off vision, focus on run.

Chips had to go back to the car because we forgot our hydration bottle.  While that was happening, Alo and I perched ourselves by the barricades, waiting for our turn to go into the starting line.  A lot of the 5k runners were still milling about.  And the 10k people were already being counted down to their start.  Bam!  There they went.  We see the 10k runners off, and after a gap, 5k runners were running off as well.  

WHAT.  We were confused.  Didn't know we were supposed to be at the starting line already.  We looked around just to be sure, and the next batch waiting were already wearing the 3k numbers.  WHAT another.  So we hurried over to the other side of the barricades, squeezed our way thru the 3k runners and we were running before our consciousness even told us we were running.

The organizers closed off some roads, but generally there were still cars in some intersections we had to cross.  I was lucky enough to be paced by Chips, because he had more of the runner's instinct of where to be on a road race.  I would've just played "connect the dots" on the lane markers.

Jogging thru Serendra and High Street was I guess okay.  I think that was almost 2 kilometers from where we started.  And then I started getting mighty tired.  There was no fun, fast downhill.  There was just blinding amounts of people in green.  It was like being thumbelina running through a field only the blades of grass were running too.  I longed for that feeling when you didn't have to make your own air, you were balanced on a lovely steed galloping effortlessly.  OH WELL.
Approaching St. Luke's, my legs were gelatinous.  I had already taken a break by brisk-walking instead, and yet it seemed like everything was so far away.  By the Lexus showroom I totally just wanted to roll over and die.  I was cursing in between breaths and I didn't care if the old lady beside me gave me "a look".  Chips said we were almost 3k (or something, I really couldn't comprehend).  Why doesn't it f*cking end already!?!  

I couldn't imagine running any longer distance.  It felt too slow and too long.  Somewhere along the way, Chips says he'll just make me stick to 3k.  Okay, I'll agree to that.  Dammit, where is that finish line?!  At some point I thought I saw the building.  We were trudging uphill and to my despair, there was no significant downhill rollercoaster moment.  Finally, the finish line decides to show itself and Chips was prodding me to run and make a strong finish.  

We cross some other runners and I guess this is the famed "second wind" thing people talk about.  Working through the pain, the legs surprisingly just went ahead and ran.  For a moment, I relished the speed.  And then the finish line came and then it was over.  The hubby was happy and hugging me, but again, I was too dizzy to really appreciate the joy.  Rehydrate, he says, to help prevent muscle spasms.  I've never drank so much liquid so early in the morning, it was like filling a water balloon that wouldn't pop.

So there, official time is around 40 minutes.  Just some minutes more, it's his 10k time.  I'm at least happy that we've come to a mutual understanding that we'll be going back to 3k.  In the meantime, I would goddamn like some coffee.

i am my husband's running project.

Real Life Foundation has this fun run called "Race for Life" that will be held on November 13 (this Saturday) at Bonifacio High Street.  I think this is quite an apt title for this race, personally.  Because the hubby just signed me up for it.  For... wait for it... the five freakin' kilometer run.  So I will race for my life.  To all my co-workers and clients, if I don't function properly next week, this is the reason.

With this, can I just officially declare myself as (as the blog title so boldly states) my husband's running project.  He's so crazy-giddy about it, the whole situation is like a child finding a toy at the bottom of a cereal box.

He was supposed to run the 10k and sign me up for the 3k.  But it turns out that the 3k slots are all taken.  I think it's either he believes in me so much or this is some retaliation for buying too much shoes, he goes ahead and gets a 5k slot for me.  The excitement from him is unbelievable, that he's decided to junk his 10k registration and pace me for the 5k.

Honestly, it's quite a relief for me, coz I'd rather DIE than do the 5k alone (which then negates the entire title and purpose of the race right?).  I don't even know what the goal is for this one.  I'm not really into personal records and all that.  Given the whole cause of the race, I think I'll just have a simple goal: to finish alive.

Well, at least I get a shirt.

my first ever race that made my husband high

Last October 30, I actually had myself signed up for a race.  I had the singlet, the race number.  The good thing was though, that it wasn't something that I needed to get up so early in the morning for.  Thank you, Adobo Magazine, for understanding that not everyone's a morning person.

Gasp!  Wait a major minute.  Yes.  I ran.  An actual race.  Don't get all too giddy, it was just 3k.  What? Just 3K?!? says my subconscious.  I felt like I was going to trip all over myself.  I don't know if this is what they call the "running high" - the part when you seem to be developing dual personalities, debating if it was too tiring for your own good or if it was actually worth all the lung-burning. 

race photos c/o Bob Guerrero

That's the hubby, the ultramarathoner, who took time off from his usual 2-digit kilometer runs to pace me and make sure that I don't quit or sit down in some corner or whatever.  We actually thought that the run was at High Street and I almost went ballistic when we realized that it was at McKinley Hill.  That meant, well, hills.  Like, what?  I can't even run on flat land.  Or jog.  Or walk-jog-ish.  Honestly, I was totally nervous about it.  It may be overthinking it, but hey, this is me coming from zero kilometers, in my first-ever pair of running shoes. Just the thought of Chips not being with me going through the starting line (because he was rogue) made my mind go in circles.

But okay, we're here now and the 10k and 5k runners were being whisked through by their respective starting horns.  There's something about being a non-athlete and warming up.  You kind of feel that you're doing something funny.  The instructor looked fine.  But you feel like there's some part wrong or I don't know, the foot you're kicking up looks mangled and totally not like what the instructor is doing.  Which is probably why I never liked the aerobics we had to do during PE class.  Anyway, I digress.

race photos c/o Bob Guerrero

After the warm-up and the fireworks, the 3K people were asked to assemble by the starting line.  It was so relieving to see Chips as the herd started rolling on.  I kept on thinking about what he said to me, which was at the time confusing... Just don't run when it starts... No pressure... But don't just walk either... Just keep it steady.  Okay.  Steady sounds simple.  NOT.  Steady is like suppressing a sugar high.  Steady is like keeping yourself awake and attentive after drinking cough syrup.  That photo up there was during the first few minutes of the race, just after the U-turn.  Still looking steady, I guess.

A few minutes later, I was huffing like anything and was trying not to let my head spin (I was half wondering if I tied my hair up too tight).  Only to be met by... TADA... a major uphill moment.  Dangnabbit.  As part of our strategy, we quasi-walked it.  A few steps up, I really had to just haul myself slowly.  Then Chips began to jog again.  I guess I had a little bit of competitive fire (it usually takes a backseat in favor of my apathetic self) and tonight, it propelled me to keep up with him.  He says it's just going to be a gradual uphill.  I. wanted. to. die.

But I didn't.  Because the fun really kicked in when we went downhill.  My soul was screaming weeee!!!!  It was like riding a rollercoaster.  I had imaginary waving arms up in the air.  Woohoo certified speed junkie me!!!  I could see my legs, but it's like it wasn't real.  I usually get this kind of thrill horseback riding.  For a moment, I totally forgot that I was actually the one running.  And then we had to go uphill again.  Boo.

Whenever it was uphill, we'd take it slow.  Take the chance to drink some Gatorade.  The thought of why we weren't seeing a water station entered my mind, but then it quickly was replaced by the need to breathe properly.  Inhale through your nose, Chips says.  And breathe out slowly through your mouth.  I didn't really know if it was helping, but at least I was concentrating on something else aside from the burning heap of muscles they usually called calves.

After another quick downhill (damn, I wanted more of that) we were back on level land heading towards the finish line.  I absolutely wanted to throw my lungs up.  My legs felt like jelly and I thought that any moment, one would trip the other into some twisted mess of asynchronism and concrete.  I could've sworn that the finish line seemed farther.  The feet were heavily slowing down and Chips was a few paces ahead of me.  Why are you running!?! I'd pant out. At some point, he just took my hand and semi-dragged me back to a decent pace.

Upon crossing the finish line, I couldn't decide if I had that infamous running high.  Was too exhausted for words.  One thing was for sure though, the high was very much with the hubby.  He threw me up in the air with a giant bear hug, practically yelling out that he was so proud of me.  Repeat 10 times (at least).  He's short of declaring me his running project, analyzed me as not a long-distance runner, and I'm willing to bet he's already got a training plan in his head to make me some 3k or 5k competitive runner.  At that moment, I really didn't care.  I just wanted to put my legs up and hibernate.

Though I wouldn't deny that I was actually happy.  Sweaty.  But happy.

Official time: 00:21:41.  Yey, us!