Monday, December 20, 2010

Feel Better

written by: Rocky Dauden
I heard this one from Dr. Oz on Oprah, he said the goal is not really to get fit but to feel better.  Simple statement but incredibly profound.  Here’s why I think so.  If the goal of working out were to build big strong muscles, what if you don’t want them?  If the goal was to run faster or lift heavier, what if you don’t compete - or just don’t care?  But if the goal was to feel better, who wouldn’t want that?
So assuming I have sold you on my opening statement and you too want to feel better, how do you do it?
When it comes to dieting, go for the food that you love. If you are a chicken person, go without the skin or shift from dark to white meat, at the end of the day, it’s still chicken.  If you love ice cream, go for the low-fat variety or try a whey protein shake or smoothie, this should taste and feel almost the same without the extra calories.  If your diet calls for sweet potatoes but you are a rice person, go for brown rice.  The point is, you gotta stay close to what makes you feel good.  Drastically deviating like going from chicken to tofu steaks or from ice cream to unflavored oatmeal will only make you dread your diet.  In the end, you feel deprived and chances are, you won’t stick to your diet and instead, rebel and stuff your face in the end reversing all the progress you made in the previous days.
Same principle applies to your workouts.  Are there exercises you just hate?  Like crunches, squats, lunges - uhh! Feel free to substitute.  If heavy squats scare you and you don’t have a spotter on hand, try the leg press machine.  Use a smith machine for your lunges so you don’t fear falling over or the abdominal machine if you have trouble reaching your toes during crunches.  Doing what you love makes your workouts more enjoyable and if you like what you are doing, you have a greater chance of coming back the next day as opposed to fearing the exercises even before you enter the gym.
I took this a step further and decided to wear my favorite colors to the gym.  I realized that when I wear certain clothes that emphasize my assets, I workout harder.  If you have love handles, please don’t wear a body-hugging shirt that will force you to keep you stomach in at all times and make it hard to breathe and perform the exercise.
On cheat days, reward yourself with a treat.  I discovered that eating a slice of cake takes away all my cravings and helps me stick to my diet because I feel so guilty afterwards that I try to go back to eating clean right away.  I also look forward to cheat days which makes all the dieting during the week much more bearable.
I tried this the other day.  I normally workout in the morning and box at night.  This time I decided to skip boxing and went home straight and instead opted for a massage.  After all the beating my body was taking, I felt I needed a break to recuperate.  After the massage, I slept like a baby which I haven’t done for a very long time.  The next morning, I skipped gym and instead had a nice breakfast at UCC Cafe.  I had garlic fried rice, fried eggs, chicken adobo ( a famous Filipino stew) and a cup of Japanese syphoned coffee - and yes, a slice of chocolate banana cake.  I ate leisurely while reading a book by Lance Armstrong entitled "It’s Not About The Bike, My Journey Back To Life" for inspiration and motivation.  This really helped my body relax and get ready for another beating.  Come nigh time I was back in the gym and amazingly, I was stronger, my muscles were harder, as if they had missed the metal so much that they were jumping up and down with joy!  I did it!  I felt better!  In fact, I felt so good that apart from finishing all my sets, I had enough leftover in the tank to do some extra sets trying out new machines and sort of dancing to the background music as I walked to the locker room.  There was a sudden spring to my step and I was smiling at everyone as opposed to the usual post-workout get-the -hell-out-of-my-way look because I might collapse anytime from fatigue.
So maybe I didn’t check the scale for a day and maybe I gained a pound or two but my muscles were harder, I was stronger, more confident, smiling, friendlier and even bounced as I walked.  I felt better.  Isn’t that what really matters?  I radiated a positive glow that could be felt by the people around me.  I was happy and they knew it.  I felt like a winner.
So I guess when it comes to feeling better, it really doesn’t matter what the scale says as long as you like what you see in the mirror and other people like it too.  Have you ever seen an arrogant self-indulged gym rat who does nothing but admire himself in the mirror and walks out of the gym alone because nobody can stand his company?  Do you think he is happy?  Working out is supposed to result to wellness.  Wellness means being well, feeling well, feeling good.
Are you feeling good now?  Are you over-trained and working too hard?  Are you cranky?  Try to take a mini-break like I did.  Focus on feeling good.  Get a facial, a massage or foot spa, have your nails done by a professional, get a good tan going, floss your teeth and flash those pearly whites.  Remember, looking good and feeling good are the end results of all the hard work.  If it were not, then why do it?
Enjoy your life.  Live to the fullest.  Carpe Diem!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

I know what you did last summer

written by Free Radical

I still remember it vividly. It was the beginning of summer, in mid-March of last year, that I dropped by my buddy Mark's house (Knight Runner) after playing a lone round of golf. During those days I spent most Sunday mornings playing golf and priding myself that I have a sport that keeps me healthy and fit. I normally played with Mark. But ever since he got himself a mountain bike a couple months prior, he would ride on Saturdays and depending on how far or how hard he rode, would play golf with me on Sundays. That Sunday was one of those days when he either rode too far or too hard the day before.

I got to his house and we chatted about serious 'stuff' (like how many bogeys I made). He then asked me if I would like to join the Condura Run scheduled the following Sunday. The choices were 3km, 5km, 10km and 21km distances. I had no running experience at all. And so I thought that if I could easily walk 7-8Km of a golf course each week, I'm in pretty good enough shape. I said yes to the 10Km event. In short that was a dumb idea.

We got my wife Noemi, and two more friends, Allan and Ronald to join too. Noemi signed up for 3k while all of us 4 boys signed up for 10k. People thought we were nuts to join a 10km run without any substantial running experience. Being a Silva mind graduate under Ms. Judy Qua, I told them that positive mental attitude is all that is needed.

Although I told everybody that I will be running without any practice, I actually did 2 practice runs that week. Boy did I realize then that running wasn't just about positive mental attitude! One also needed to be in shape – duh! But no backing out now…

Come Sunday, we woke up really early and got into our running 'attire'. I was really conscious of what I was going to wear - hahaha what a newbie! We got to the starting line as the 21k runners were sent off. What a feeling it was to be in that crowded space, being with hundreds of runners eagerly awaiting the start of the 10k run. There were celebrities, execs, students and people from everywhere. Wow! It was an electrifying moment. As the announcer counted down 10, 9, 8…. I knew at that moment that I was hooked. I haven't started running yet but I knew this was a sport that I liked.

I finished the 10k in 1:18. Two weeks after that we joined another race, then another and so on. We trained and raced without any formal coaching. We formed the Gone Running Club to promote our chosen advocacy which is to "Run against Corruption". In July we joined the Milo Marathon Manila Eliminations and I ran my first 21k with a time of 2:16. In October I ran my first full marathon in the 1st Quezon City International Marathon with a time of 4:52. In November, Mark and I ran the Standard Chartered Bangkok Marathon. In February this year I ran two full marathons, 2010 Condura Run (our anniversary run) and the 2010 Standard Chartered Hong Kong Marathon.

After that, Mark and I got another bird-brained idea – why not do triathlons. So in March of this year, we signed up for the 2010 Ironman 70.3 Philippines in Camsur. At that time Mark couldn't even swim across a 25m pool while I didn't even have a bike much less any real riding experience? The last time I owned a bike was in Grade 6.

With the help of two great coaches Ian Castilla and Mark Candelaria, we trained for 5 months and in August we completed our first half Ironman - a 1.9k swim, 90k bike and 21k run. I was able to finish it in 6:45. In between I was able to get personal records (PR) for 10k and 21k distances.

A couple of weeks after Camsur, true to form, Mark got another crazy thought – how about an ultra marathon? And so we did. Our first ultra marathon was the PAU (Philippine Association of Ultrarunners) T2N 50k. I was able to finish it in 5:52.

Last week we ran QCIM 2010 to celebrate my full marathon anniversary.

Looking back at what transpired since last year, I was transformed from a happy laid back golfer who was so afraid of getting too tan/dark that I applied sunscreen every two hours while playing, to an endorphin junkie with several 10ks and 21ks, 5 full marathons, 1 ultra marathon and 1 half Ironman logged.

Everything has come full circle. Now more than ever, I can say that all it really takes is a positive mental attitude. Mental toughness is the key. It will get you through the training needed to prepare for and finish a full marathon or whatever event or sport you want to join. A positive mental attitude can get you through anything: whether it is an endurance race or starting that new business you've been planning for years. Whether it is wooing that beautiful girl in school or getting your kids through college. PMA is a trait everyone should have.

Today I'm starting to train for the next challenge in March - Bataan Death March 102k. Well that's what we did last summer.

Condura Run 2009: Mark, Allan, Noemi, Ronald

 Condura Run 2009: Jay and Noemi

 2009 Milo Marathon Manila Eliminations: Cherry, Ronald, Allan, Jojo, Kuya Erning, Noemi, Jay, Val (taking picture)

 Globe Run for Home: Mark, Allan, Jojo, Val, Jay, Marvin (debut of Run Against Corruption shirt)

 Weekend LSDs in Sta. Rosa

Kenny's Urbanite 2009: Gone Running Club members, Tiffany, Cherry, Gerry, Zelyn, Noemi, Mark, Greg (2nd Place 10km), Perly, Jojo, Vince, Jay, Mark J., Val, Darwin, Kuya Erning, Marvin

1st Quezon City International Marathon 

 Standard Chartered Bangkok Marathon

2010 Ironman 70.3 Philippines

 2010 Quezon City International Marathon

Thursday, December 2, 2010

2011 Condura Skyway Marathon

It's getting nearer, approximately 9 weeks remaining to train for Condura Skyway Marathon which will be held in February 6, 2011. 

Registration starts Dec. 12, 2010.

Visit for further details.

Road X Trail Events is holding a series of Road X Trail events this month at Nuvali Sta Rosa, Laguna. It's another good way to spend your weekend. See race schedules below and choose your race.

CYCLING - December 11, 2010

Timed Fun Ride
FIT      : 20 km
ACTIVE: 10 km
YOUTH : (8-11 yrs old): 10km
KIDS    : (8-11 yrs old): 10km

Road Criterium  (Time+ Laps)
Fit (40 min + 4 laps) 2 km single lap distance
ACTIVE (20 min + 2laps) 2 km single lap distance

Dirt Criterium / short track
Fit (40 min + 4 laps) 2 km single lap distance
ACTIVE (20 min + 2 laps) 2 km single lap distance

RUNNING - December 18, 2010
10 mile  : 16km
5 mile   :   8km
ACTIVE  :   5km
Starting :   3km
Kids (8-11 yrs old) : 1km  

10 mile : 16km run
5 mile  :   8km run

DUATHLON - December 19, 2010
Road Duathlon
Fit : 3 km run/20km bike/ 3km run
Active: 1.5km run/ 12km bike/1.5km run
Kids (8 - 11 yrs old): 500m run/6km bike/1.5km run

Trail Duathlon
Fit  : 5km run / 30km bike / 1.5km run
Active: 3km run/ 15km bike/ 3km run

For registration and race details click HERE.
For more details visit Finishline website (

Friday, November 26, 2010

Condura Run 2011

One of the much awaited running event in the country is the Condura Run. This event has come a long way and has offered race distances such as 3k, 5k, 10k, 21k, and last year, they launched the 1st Skyway Marathon (42km).  You may want to prepare and join this memorable event next year.

When:    February 6, 2011
Events: 3k, 5k, 10k, 21k, and 42.195 km
Registration starts in Dec. 1, 2010

Let's wait for more details!