hurting is normal

This morning, we decided to run (or jog) to somehow expel at least some of the food we've eaten the last few days.  Being the non-runner (or jogger), after 3-ish kilometers my hamstring began to ache.  Yah, I think that was my hamstring.

"Hun, my leg hurts"

He looks back, "Where?"

I point to the back of my left leg.

"Oh, that's just normal," he simply states.

"What are you talking about?" I said. "Hurting is not normal.  It's NOT hurting that's normal."

And he just keeps on jogging along.

he wants to move. all the time.

On weekends, I usually switch on sloth-mode. Well, to be frank, if I had my way, I'd be on sloth-mode all-day every day. I have tried waking up at 4PM, staying in bed until 6PM watching TV, and waiting until the last bit of available natural light to fade to darkness before standing up to flick the light switch.

It's a totally different story with the husband. Firstly, he is a morning person. At 6AM, he is already alive (even earlier on weekends, which should be a crime). I could be awake, but not really functional. More of a walking zombie. Secondly, he cannot for the life of me, stand doing nothing. "Nothing" is not rest. "Nothing" is unproductive. "Nothing" is well... unacceptable. I really can't fathom having this kind of outlook in life. Just thinking of it just tires me.

I'm not sure if it comes with being athletic, this need to always be on the move. Perhaps it's some level of competitiveness, even if you're technically not competing with anyone. Well, aside from perhaps yourself.

Hmm. Wait, now that's a thought. In the pursuit of a psychoanalysis, perhaps it's that fire of a competition.  Even if you're alone. You're competing against being caught doing nothing. Because with doing nothing, you lose. Losing, even if we do say it builds character, sucks. Who would want to suck? Being on the move therefore minimizes the instance of sucking. Yeah, I think that makes sense. I'm not sure if it's valid. But it makes sense.

*I actually made the typography wallpaper for Chips quite a while ago.  It got me thinking to write a post about it.  So, tadah.  If you want a version for your desktop, just leave a comment with your email addie.  Cheers!

he didn't drink all of the beer.

We had beer in the ref left-over from a weekend dinner.  One Friday night, Chips picks up a bottle.  A few moments later, while I was washing the dishes, he motions for me to make way.  "I just need to throw this," he says.  And so he proceeds to draining a good amount of beer down the sink.

I don't really encounter a lot of guys (especially if they're from where I work) who'd throw away beer.  Or not finish beer.  Unless they've been caught when they're not supposed to be drinking beer.  Or are passing out because of too much beer.

"I just needed to carbo-load.  I'm running tomorrow."

It makes sense, I suppose.  It is made out of wheat.  It also beats him asking me to cook pasta.

On another note, congratulations to him for (using his term) "destroying" his 21k PR, clocking in at 01:50:13 at the Run United 2 race last November 20.  Out of 1,100 runners he's actually number 54!  WOOT in a major way.  Thanks to photovendo for this pic:

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!

pan-fried chicken breast in 10 minutes

Okay, I still owe the PAU P2P post.  But in the meantime, indulge me please in my posting of a feat.  I cooked dinner again!  It turned out to be good, despite its simplicity - and the fact that we only Googled what we could possibly do (easily) to the chicken breasts we still had in our freezer.  Well, the good thing about cooking for a husband who's running the next morning is that he'll eat just about anything... umm, not to say that he doesn't have standards, but I guess at my level at least he's still alive.

Anyway, so we had chicken.  And there was this recipe that came out first on Google when I keyed in "pan-fried chicken breast".  So we click that and it sounded pretty simple.  Some of the other ingredients we didn't have, like oregano and parsely.  But theoretically, the key taste-inducers were there:  Salt, Garlic, Pepper and Butter.  The online recipe didn't have the steps so we just... ummm... winged it.

It only took a little over ten minutes to do the entire thing (if you remove the time it took to peel the garlic cloves).

What we did:
1)  Melt butter (I think that was around 1 tablespoon... or more).
2)  Pour the butter over the chicken, which should be sitting in a bowl of some sort.
3)  The minced garlic, pepper and salt goes in with the chicken.  Didn't really measure them, I guess it would depend on your taste.
4)  Work in the ingredients into the chicken with your hands.  Daddy says this works in the flavor more, which is what my Lola always does when she cooks.
5)  Let the chicken sit and bond with the flavors for a few minutes.  You can drizzle a bit of olive oil, to prevent chicken from drying.  We didn't have time for longer bonding, perhaps it would've been better if we let them sit in the fridge longer.  Maybe next time.  Well while they're all getting to know each other, you can spend the time cooking the rice.
6)  Set your pan (ours is Teflon coated, with those little ridge things) to medium-high heat.  When it's all nice and hot, you can place the chicken to pan-grill.
7)  It's better if the garlic goes along for added flavor.  And you can drizzle more pepper if you want.  Perhaps this is where the oregano and parsely could come in as well.
8)  It should cook fairly fast and you can now enjoy it with steaming rice.  We ate ours with corn and mushrooms (cans we just got at the supermarket).

Tada!  Oh yes, I'm a wife who cooks for her husband.  Yeaheh.

Pasuquin to Pagudpud Ultramarathon 2

I actually had to run alongside (and mostly, behind) Chips to get this photo of him approaching the Pagudpud boundary marker.  It was rather tiring and by the end of the bridge I was heaving like a fish out of water.
And that wasn't even a kilometer (sad, I know).

A detailed series of entries about how Team Chips (yes, that's what people apparently call runner + support people) survived and finished the P2P marathon to follow.

Pasuquin to Pagudpud Ultramarathon

42nd Place, 10:17:21
I am truly, immensely and deeply proud of my ultramarathon man.

Honestly, I haven't wrapped my head around how to blog about this event, I promise to post a real narrative on it later on.  I suppose that "running high" is contagious to those who do support for the race, and my brain is still swarming with words.

running is a prayer


Almost every morning, before going to work, I watch my husband prepare his black knapsack for his running gear.  He takes time, though hurriedly, to choose his singlet paired with his shorts, paired with the pre-selected shoe (which apparently depends on the distance he's planning to run).  That while I, sluggish and uninspired, get dressed and dread the turmoil facing me at the office.

Minding moments like those, that stark difference, there is a tinge of envy.  On the brink of a life crisis, I was wondering if running like him would give me some long-term motivation to overhaul my reality (more than the perk my daily tall latte gives).  But of course I can't really run like him, unless the overhauling objective was to kill myself.

One day he says to me, that running (to him) is like his prayer.  Alone and paced, it almost forces you to think and reflect.  It's also the reason why he doesn't like playing music while running.  It's like the rest of the world zones out, and it's just you and your running.  And those hours of reflecting, he likes to dedicate to something - really, like a personal cause.  That though alone, you're praying that the universe would listen.  There are some runs he says are for me.  I don't know about you guys, but that's just like the biggest hug and warmest "I love you".  That's probably it, translated in runnerspeak.

Which got me thinking, what is my prayer?  And how do I pray?  It seems so mundane if my perfect alone time is just staring at the little sippy hole of my tall hot beverage.  I stare blankly into space, with a background blur of the security guard opening the door and greeting each customer a jolly good morning.  And by some tiny jolt of caffeine, I realize that I haven't blogged or written poetry in a while.  Haven't had that moment to just think with my soul.

So I guess this, this is my prayer.  What's yours?

waiting beneath an arc that says "Finish"

And it usually has a very daunting countdown timer. To those actually in the race, the sight of that running digital clock may be a badge of encouragement, pride and accomplishment - a moment of "I can do it!" or "Yes, I did it!". That sight of numbers amidst semi-colons counting down would probably last a few seconds, after which focus is then diverted to stopping a the timer on the calculator-looking sportswatch on the wrist, or to the person tearing a piece of the bib whilst handing a free bottle of specialized refreshment.

But to someone who's waiting, and staring at that steadily animated thing for at least an hour (usually more), it is nerve-wracking. Even if you already know the general pace and expected finishing time of whoever it is you're waiting for, you'd usually want to be at the line a bit early (if you're not there from the start already). Of course, to get a good spot for that crossing-the-line photo. To get parking. Or to simply get to the finish line area without getting lost given all the rerouting.

Or really, as a concerned party, you really want to be early - just in case. Just to be safe. Now, since the concept of "just in case" has now been introduced into your head, the mind will naturally wander and play tricks on you. Like, what else is there to do while waiting? And even if you have a form of distraction like I don't know, an iPod or some hand-held game-thingy, it only takes a millisecond to be shot in the heart with a just-in-case-induced panic scenario.

The statement itself is pretty ambiguous. It can be positive: just in case... he finishes early. Or you see other friends who finish early. Or you see other friends who are likewise waiting. And it can be a deadly spiral of anxiety: just in case... he couldn't finish the race. But wait, he's really going to finish because that's how he is. Something bad would have to happen. Maybe he got injured. Would they call an ambulance? Would they call me if they call an ambulance? Would it necessitate a severe injury before an ambulance is called? How do they define severe? If it's not severe, will they still pick him up? Should I be the one to call for the emergency? What if he crosses the line while I'm out talking to a race marshall about the possibility of an injury and an imminent pick-up? Insert silent scream inside head.

Repeat the cycle for say, 1-2 hours. With around 15-minute zoning-out or otherwise relaxed intervals (possibly longer, if you're actually sitting somewhere). The closer you get to the pre-discussed estimated time of arrival, those intervals almost diminish (so does the concept of sitting down). It's arduously stressful, really. But it makes seeing him cross that line all the more priceless.

I think I lose weight just by waiting.

34th Milo Marathon - Manila

The hubby will be running the full marathon, and we're still at a loss on how we're actually going to do the support thing.  The good part about the route is that I just need to wait in one area and he'll pass me three times.  He's kind of torn if he'll like it or not - basically the knee-jerk reaction being it's going to be a bore running around the same circle thrice. 

Since it's like THE Milo Marathon, there will be hoardes of people.  It's like some giant organized stampede of green.  And good luck to us finding parking.  Should I be doing support, I'll have to find parking twice.  I was actually looking at probably walking (a suggestion I quipped this morning without seeing the map) from my support spot back to the finish line.  He says it's more than 5k away.  Alright, so maybe that's not going to be an option.


Contrast in logic and reason.

From the hubby's facebook page status: after running a 10km race this morning, i saw some runners with pints of haagen dazs. I ask some a volunteer where to get some and she says its only for the 21km runners. I said, wait a bit, i'll run another 11km...

I on the other hand, would just go out and buy the damn pint.

bacon pesto for the win!

I oddly got inspired to cook dinner this evening.  I had this drive to cook pasta - I didn't know what it would be.  I just knew that it had to have bacon.  We still had some herb-based ingredients at home, so I chose to experiment.  So here's our dinner.  It's Bacon-Pesto Pasta with Grilled Frankfurters on the side.

What's in it:  garlic + onions, cilantro pesto, bacon, pepper and salt to taste, olive oil, feta cheese.

The hubby (who is washing the dishes right now) says I may very well cook this the next time he needs to carbo-load before a race.  I just wish I get to repeat it!

the gray hoodie.

It may be 3 in the morning, or for ultramarathons even 2am, I believe that it's no reason to look sloppy and unkept.  I would say that the most versatile and yet fashionably practical thing to own, as someone who sends of a loved one in the wee hours of the morning, is a gray hoodie.

It's something that keeps you warm so early in the morning.  You can wear the hood to camouflage bedhead, and wahey it also doubles as insulation (with that little fact of 80% or some significant percentage of your body head escaping through your head).  Throw it over a tank top for the morning chill, and discard as the day wears on.  You can wear it to top jazz pants, cropped shorts or what have you's - a skirt, if you really want to play cheerleader.  And since it's a hoodie, you can disguise the non-sportiness in you. Because yeah, it's not a cotton-lined boyfriend blazer.

The best part about it - it's grey.  It will go with anything.  It can even go with your husband's singlet (but I doubt if you'd go that far).

This weekend, we were checked in at The Mandarin Oriental (using up a gift check given during our wedding).  This morning, of course the hubby had to run.  I was sandwiched comfortably between a lovely duvet and the oversized bed when he nudges me to some form of consciousness and kisses my forehead to say he's leaving.  Mmmkay, I murmur and go back to sleep.

Later in the morning (at around 9am) he calls.  He needs at least 3, no make that 4 buckets of ice.  He did 25k or something and he needs to soak his legs in uber-cold water.  Okay, I say, and call for room service.  The room service girl didn't think much of it, I suppose.  Or maybe she just did a great job masking a that "what the hell" kind of tonality from her voice.

A few minutes later, a knock on the door.  I open it, and a lady holding up a tray with 4 buckets of ice stands smiling.  I'm there, with bedhead and eyes adjusting to the bright hallway.

"Ma'am, you're the one who ordered the ice?"


"That's 4 buckets of ice?"  (I suppose that it's odd, at 9 in the morning)

"Yes," I say, motioning for her to come into the room.  I guess she sees that I'm the only one there, and starts wondering what the hell I'm going to do with 4 buckets of ice.

She lays it down on the coffee table.  "Umm, enjoy the rest of your stay, ma'am."  And she hurries off.

I crawl back on the bed.  For all I know, she may be thinking that I was going to steal her kidneys.

the shopper's choice of shoes.

I really love shoes.  I own possibly more than 20 pairs.  Out of all of them, only one can be considered an actual sports training shoe.  It's the one I bought almost 5 years ago, when I actually attempted to be a regular at gyming (I failed).

Being someone who did not develop any motivation to actually participate in strenuous activities, my appreciation for such footwear likewise remained at zero.  Because simply, given the money to splurge, I'd rather place my high arch (so those running simulation tests tell me) on a pair that would add oomph to my outfit, and strut to my walk.  They basically would cost the same anyway.

Like, come on... look at that.  Webby-meshy net of a design strewn across your foot?  Would rather have it on a cage leather bootie.  And look, they both have bows too (people would probably kill me for calling running shoe laces a bow).

The hubby has been constantly prodding me to actually get a pair.  And he's actually volunteering to pay for it.  I'm hesitant.  I honestly feel that my other shoes would feel bad.  My heels, I mean.  But then again, it may be the only time he'll actually buy me shoes.

Now that, could get me thinking.

morning runs on weekends.

I vaguely recall my husband nudging me awake, to tell me that he's going off for his morning run.  He seemed like a red singlet of a blur, and I fall back to my pillow, asleep.  It was a weekend (or a long weekend for that matter) and waking up early was not on the agenda.  Next thing I knew, the phone was ringing and it was him calling to ask me to make breakfast.  He's only around 6 kilometers away and hungry.

So I get up, grill some frankfurters, scramble some eggs and heat the rice.  I set them on the table then flop on the couch to wait for him.

He arrives a few minutes later, panting and really hungry.

"So, where did you go?" I ask.

"Everywhere," he says, half-smiling and half-haggardly breathing.


"I went to Heritage Park."

"What?"  Okay, for perspective guys, we live in Mandaluyong (Tivoli Garden Residences) and he runs from the condo.  He doesn't drive, he runs.  "That's so far!"

"That's the point," he simply states.

And I have nothing to say to that.

better than any medal

Dear The North Face,

Thank you for giving my husband this wonderful plaque.  He couldn't stop smiling yesterday.  Much so that he was actually quite happy with the dinner I served him, which was four pieces of reheated spam. 

We have yet to identify where to display this piece.  Right now it's on our living room table, right beside the flatscreen's remote control.  There's no denying, it holds a very important place in our hearts.

Best regards and 'till the next TNF100.


It was a nice Tuesday morning just like today, and we were eating sandwiches for breakfast (care of our beautiful sandwich maker which I'll dedicate a post to later on). The sun was somewhat being covered by whisps light gray rolling clouds. The wind coming into the condo wasn't as cool, but it was enough to make us feel good about waking up so early.

Unlike Mondays, Tuesdays are a bit more optimistic. And the hubby confirms this by declaring that he always looks forward to Tuesdays. The idea of it being a Tuesday seems like a happy drug, apparently. More so pronounced since he's talking to someone who's not particularly fond of donning happiness so early in the morning.

"Why, because Monday is finally over?" I inquire.

"Because Tuesday means the start of the running week."

Ah, there's a running week. That starts not on the official start of the week. Must be something like fiscal years.

"But don't you run on Mondays?" I wonder. You know, because sometimes he does.

Apparently, Monday runs (as he explains) are when he doesn't get enough run over the weekend. So Monday is usually rest day. Making Tuesday the official running-every-day-from-hereon day. And that's why Tuesdays make him particularly happy.

"Oh," I say and continue to eat my sandwich then proceed to wear my 4-inch heels.

if he's hooked, he's hooked.

And there's no stopping it.
Even if he's injured, limping, and twisted in incomprehensible levels of pain.

Trust me.

why am I writing about running?

I am not a runner. But I do love my husband who is irrevocably, impossibly, immensely head-over-heels in love with running.

For the past weeks, my head and I have been going thru so much thinking, staring into space, imagining... of what could possibly be the topic of my blogging life resurrected. For one thing, I can no longer blog about my wedding preparations (which lasted for a good 9 to 10 months). My old blog was an online diary of sorts, and I thought maybe I should try to challenge myself by writing about something I know virtually nothing about.

Oh, did I say that I wasn't a runner? I look at runners (or anyone involved in sports for that matter) and think, why are they putting themselves through all this pain? Maybe this blog will become my personal quest to understanding. I would suppose that there are people (wives or significant others) who are in the same boat as me. Or who missed the boat at being sporty during those formative years of hobby-picking. And for those who got on that big boat of dedication to physical activity and competition, I do hope that this writing would amuse, at the very least. If I get to connect by just having an honestly different perspective and some fresh insights, then all the better.

Because at the end of it all, I'm writing out of love (cheesy, I know). I love writing and telling stories. And my husband who loves running.

about the one who married the runner.


Hi!  My name is Anna Castro-Dayrit.  Most people call me Fozzy.  Married to runner, Chips S. Dayrit.  Or should I say "ultra-runner" now?  I used to be with an advertising agency, and am currently taking a hiatus from the corporate life.  I practice calligraphy, dabble in illustration and writing.

When my husband's father first met me, one of the first questions he asked was "What sport do you play?" Which was I guess natural, because he was (at that time) the head of a sports committee. My honest answer - "uh, I'm sportless." He laughed, and I think we made some sort of amusing connection. We basically established that as individuals we might as well occupy totally different planets, but as a couple we actually work.

After more than a decade of being together - 1 year of which married - I remain to be the sportless one lusting after 4-inch heels, design and good brewed coffee. I won't even pretend to understand what goes on in an athlete's head (aka my husband, when it comes to sports). I can use the powers of deduction and observation and perhaps some nice pretty metaphors.

Anyway, I digress. Aside from dabbling in my other-half's world of running, I spend my time watching twisted crime TV series, surf on design and typography, and launch into self-tutorials on Illustrator and Photoshop, and maintain my tumblr and my own domain.

Shopping? Of course. If it was an endurance sport, I'd take as many finish lines imaginable.