Wednesday, April 30, 2008

The Deed is Done - I'VE ENTERED

Well, I've done it, I've paid my money and entered the races. Osim Singapore Triathlon in July and Laguna Phuket in December. Assuming training is going well these will probably be my two main focus races for the year. Last time I did Singapore, 2 years ago, I won my age-group and last time I did Phuket, 3 years ago, I was third in my age-group.

Both are huge races packed full of International Competition (certain Malaysian runners I could mention wouldn't like that), I consider my previous successes in these races as being huge breakthrough results. You've got to be in perfect condition and everything has got to go right - we'll see how the season's going but step one is complete - I've entered.

1979 - Classic

This is probably the first song I became musically aware to!!! Sad but true, I was 13 years old and on an exchange trip to France at the time. The video has a super cringe factor but it's a great little ditty - makes me smile anyway.

Happy Birthday KK - Welcome to my Category

KK is forty today - Happy Birthday dude. That's the good news, the bad news is you have just re-entered my racing category - you're now a marked man - don't let me down!

Monday, April 28, 2008

Ride Alert - Labour Day & Saturday 3rd May 2008

Thursday May 1st

Sam Says: -


Since it’s a holiday on Thursday, we have the opportunity to squeeze in an extra ride this week. So, how about going to KKB (Kuala Kubu Baru) via Ulu Yam for a change? By my reckoning (which is plus/minus 50k), the distance is around 120k round trip from KL.

Meet opposite True Fitness in Sri Hartamas at 0630 or at the lights in Batu Caves where the road to Ulu Yam starts at 0700.

If you are interested in coming along, please let me know.


PS I have never stopped for breakfast at KKB before but I’m sure we can find somewhere. Alternatively, we can stop in Ulu Yam on the way back."

Saturday May 3rd

Sam says: -


Notwithstanding the extra ride on Thursday this week, there will be the usual ride on Saturday too.

The plan is to do a loop ride that takes us on the usual road towards Banting. We then turn towards the mosque close to KLIA and head past Sepang race track before we join the road from Sepang to Salak. We then head to Salak for ‘makan’ and before we head home. I reckon the round trip is between 120 and 140k.

If you are interested in joining the ride, please let me know.

Meet at Mega Mall exit on Federal Highway at 0630 or Cheras 2nd toll at 0710.


Power Run 7km - 27 April 2008

Shilpa also signed up for the Power Run 10k but unfortunately there was an administration mix up and she ended up with a 7km number. The officials being officially officious wouldn't let her start the 10k so she reluctantly did the 7km race instead.

She's getting in great shape these days and knocked out a very credible 41 minute time over a very hilly and long 7km route. She achieved her first top ten placing - AWESOME.

Power Run 10km - 27 April 2008

Yesterday was one of the few times I allowed myself to "compete" in a running race. I usually use them as motivating training runs rather than races. There are only so many races you can do throughout the year well, so I limit myself to pushing in Olympic Distance Tris as these are probably my forte (certainly my passion at least).

However, I have been struggling really badly with motivation recently and with A'Formosa Sprint and Olympic distance Tris just two weeks away I decided that it was time to kick start the season and at least do a time trial and see where I am speed wise.

I normally say that the thing I love about 10-21k races is that as soon as it starts to really hurt the race is over (unlike marathons). However, the statement yesterday would have been something like this "What I really love about 10k races is that as soon as it starts to hurt there's only 9.5km left!!!!". Check out the picture and you'll see what I mean.

In short my leg turnover was pretty good but I went anaerobic very early on and the hills really took it out of my legs and lungs. Going along one particularly long hill I was in the classic head down, shoulders hunched format - not fast. I kept it together though and finished in 44:36 and in 7th place. The time was OK considering the course is long by about half a K also I rode 144k the day before (and crashed quite badly - photos to come).

Having run several sub 40 minute 10ks before it's clear that things are not great but it's early in the season and there's time to improve. Probably a bit late for A'Formosa though but we'll see - the important races come in a few months.

A final couple of points about the race: -

  • What on earth do the organisers think they are doing having a 10k race without at least one drink station - not only is this inconsiderate it is downright dangerous considering the heat and some of the less fit competitors.

  • I'd like to make a big shout out to the guy that was struggling to stand up at the finish line next to me (Navin). He was a tall muscular guy and had given the race his all - I thought I'd given it everything but he put me to shame with his commitment - WELL DONE buddy, you've inspired me to push harder next time.
  • Sunday, April 27, 2008

    Shark kills triathlete off US coast

    Officials say the man was "probably" attacked by a Great White Shark

    Several miles of coast in California have been closed after a 66-year-old man died in a rare shark attack.

    David Martin was bitten as he swam in the Pacific Ocean off Solana Beach, 14 miles north of San Diego.

    The retired veterinarian was training with a triathlon team 150 yards (137m) offshore when he was attacked across both legs before the animal swam away.

    He was carried ashore and taken to the Fletcher Cove Park lifeguard station, but was pronounced dead at the scene.

    Officials cleared all beaches within a 17-mile radius of the attack.

    Simon says: - I have two phobia's when it comes to dying prematurely, one is in a plane crash but the other is by being taken by a shark. What a nightmare! David Martin, rest in peace, my thoughts are with you.

    Thursday, April 24, 2008

    Company Awards Night - Programme Director of the Year 2007

    These photographs certainly help "refresh my memory" of my Company Awards Night - let's just say that by the end of the evening we were a little worse for wear - and I was not the only one - having said that, finishing at 5 o'clock in the morning probably didn't help! (Mind you at least it showed what a great evening we were all having as we didn't want it to end).

    It does look remarkably like Ian singing here - I certainly wouldn't put it past him but I don't recall the specifics.

    I probably spent far too much time talking nonsense - but then I know many of you would say "What's new?"

    We award three major prizes each year, the most prestigious is the Programme Director of the Year award, the winner also gets a Rolex Watch. This year (2007) it was won by Ryan Cartagena (centre). Also we award the Most Improved Programme Director prize which comes with a Tag Heuer watch, this was won by Irmi Haslinda Abu Hassan (left). Finally we award the Best Newcomer who also gets a Tag Heuer, this was won by Darmen Nair (right).

    Here's Ian (my business partner) and I with the award winners.

    As the evening went on the crisp, prim and proper look deteriorated but boy, did we have fun!

    Tuesday, April 22, 2008

    Ride & Run Alert - Sat 26 & Sun 27th April 2008

    Sam says: -


    We are heading to Bukit Tingi on Sat for a nice and steady hill climb and a nice breakfast in BT.

    Meet at 0630 opposite True Fitness in Sri Hartamas or at the traffic lights in Gombak at the start of the old Genting road at 0710.

    Please let me know if you plan to come along and where you intend to join the ride. Cheers.


    PS there is 30RM left over in the ‘breakfast kitty’ from last week’s ride.

    Simon Says: -

    "I'll be there probably cycling from Kajang so will meet you at the start of the old Genting road. Looking forward to breakfast.

    Sunday morning is the Power Run 10k which I plan to do. Sam and Hayley however intend to do the usual Sri Hartama 21k - Wow choices.

    Monday, April 21, 2008

    Running Log - SHOCKING

    I've been called many things in regards to my training, the predominant theme is of extreme excess. In fact "Masalleh Gila" seems to be one of the favourites here in Malaysia - when literally translated it means "Foreign Fool" but I'm reliably told it affectionately means "Crazy Foreigner" (Is that any better?).

    Anyway I digress, I thought I'd share with those that think I do a silly amount of training (my wife included) with my mileage for last weekend.


    I didn't feel great but I wasn't ill - is it all over? Have I peaked and is this the slippery slope to oblivion?

    Or is it merely a blip and as Arnie would say - "I'll Be Back".

    Who knows - only time will tell. Is it time for a beer and a pizza yet?

    Saturday, April 19, 2008

    Boys on Bikes

    Friday, April 18, 2008

    Cousin Christine

    My cousin Christine sent this email in response to my sister's half marathon recently. I know she does something called "Boot Camp Workouts" which sound brutal but it looks like she runs a good half marathon too. Christine is American and lives in Texas and is someone I don't get to see often enough.

    "The Texas Half @ White Rock Lake in Dallas

    I did the 3M Half Marathon in Austin 1/27/08 and the Texas Half on 2/7/08… best time was 2:04:46 but my training partner has been ill (she’s slower) and so I think I might be able to catch up to you Angie with the next one! Weather’s getting a little too hot for racing here… I will be running at night through the summer. Got some more planned for the Fall…. Maybe I can join you for race sometime (not you Simon that might kill me).

    Hope all is well!!!!



    Ride & Run Alert - 19th & 20th April 2008

    Looks like the group is riding to Kuala Selangor on Saturday. I've no car at the moment so I plan to run on Saturday morning at Country Heights and then ride on Sunday.

    I hear that there is a ride going to Broga and back from Batu 14 Hulu Langat starting at 7:30. Possible 70 bikes - let's see what happens - there will be at least one person there anyway and that's me!

    Thursday, April 17, 2008

    Motivating Quote of the Day

    Each day at the office we have a "Motivating Quote of the Day" appear at log on for every member of staff. This was today's and I thought I spread it a bit wider today as this is a particularly good one.

    "Life is a series of experiences, each one of which makes us bigger, even though sometimes it is hard to realize this. For the world was built to develop character, and we must learn that the setbacks and grief which we endure help us in our marching onward." - Henry Ford

    Wednesday, April 16, 2008

    Seb, Sid and Daddy Fly a Kite

    Now I'm Angry!

    I've just heard that the winner of Sunday's BHP Orange Run, Jean-Pierre LAUTREDOUX, was disqualified. I couldn't wait to go online and find out what dastardly deed he committed, did he cheat, take a shortcut, block another competitor, take a taxi...what could it have been...DRUGS MAYBE? Oh the scandal of it!

    I was dumbfounded, shocked and I'm now positively angry to find out that his crime was TO BE A FOREIGNER! Interesting though that the organisers didn't notice that when they took his entry money, nor when he lined up at the start and seemingly they only noticed it once he won the race and the sad LOSERS that he beat complained. Even more strangely is that none of the other foreigners that ran were disqualified; I guess he must have been more foreign or something.

    As for the organisers, I'll never win a running race until my legs grow 6 inches longer but I will promise you this I WILL NEVER RUN THE BHP ORANGE RUN out of protest and I urge every decent Malaysian who thrives on competition to boycott the race next year - this is clearly not a race worth winning or even taking part in.

    I made my feelings pretty clear in my post KLIM 2008 and Those Darned Kenyans and from the many responses I got the overriding consensus is outrage at this sort of attitude.

    In conclusion I'd like to say to Jean-Pierre, congratulations on the win, don't let it get you down, you're an inspiration to me whenever I see you running; and take comfort from the fact that you kicked these LOSERS butts at the age of 42 and I've no doubt you'll still be beating them at 52.

    Tuesday, April 15, 2008

    Sis Fires Off Another Half Marathon

    Hello all,

    I did a half marathon in Freiburg yesterday and managed a pb for that race (not quite a pb overall) Did it in 1:58:07 and considering a lack of long runs a brilliant result for me! It was cold and sleety/sunny/rainy and so ideal conditions for me - I reckon that made all the difference. So now on to the next eh?

    Lots of love



    (Courtesy of Sian)

    Someone please tell me how this is done?

    Pui Kuan

    Pui Kuan did the Orange run last weekend. Here she is caught on the phone but still running I may add. Pui Kuan used to be our Accountant but is emigrating to Australia soon. Keep up the running Pui Kuan but tell the office to call you after the race next time.

    Monday, April 14, 2008

    Kuantan Holiday

    Shilpa, Seb, Sid and I took some time out the weekend before last and went for a four day trip to the Hyatt Kuantan on the east coast. Much to Shilpa's disgust and the boys confusion I got out with 100k to go and cycled the last stretch there and back - very cool although the hwy police didn't think but I promised to get off at the very next exit - and then forgot to! Tch Tch. Here are some photos anyway.

    Click on the photos to see them in their full multicolour hi-res glory.

    Look Out for Cyclists

    (Courtesy of Nick Flynn - recently sighted in Madrid)

    Try this awareness test, truly amazing

    Thursday, April 10, 2008

    Idiot of the Year 3

    Wednesday, April 09, 2008

    Ride & Run Alert - 12th & 13th April 2008

    With Sam still away and A'Formosa looming large I thought a swift loop around Hulu Langat would be the orer of the day. I'm starting with Cecil from Country Heights at 6:45. We'll be at Hulu Langat traffic lights at 7:15 and the mosque at Batu 14 at 7:30.

    The plan is to go reasonably hard to Seminyih and then on to Kajang (or back to KL if you're joining us from there). Let me know if you're coming.

    Sunday morning run is the usual 21k (or more if you like) to Sri Hartamas. Start time will be 6:15. I may cycle to the start and back to put in a few extra bike k's but we'll see.


    Tuesday, April 08, 2008

    Wellington Smashes Course Record

    (Courtesy of

    Reigning World Ironman Champion Chrissie Wellington showed her class by coming from behind to claim her first Panthers Ironman Australia Triathlon at Port Macquarie, smashing the course record. After winning in Korea and at the Ford Ironman World Championship last year, Wellington remains unbeaten in Ironman competition.

    Australia's Kate Major took the race to the world champion but had to settle for second. Patrick Vernay successfully defended his title, but took him till the final 20km of the run to take charge from a fast finishing Mitch Anderson.

    "This race was harder for me than Hawaii, I had more ups and downs, but the crowd support was fantastic and got me through,” said Wellington.

    Wellington finished an astonishing ninth overall and took 10 minutes off the previous course record, set in 2007 by Rebekah Keat (9:13:00). Wellington also posted the third fastest run time as only two men ran faster than her 3:01:55.

    Simon says: - "Is this woman for real? She's done 3 Ironmans and won all of them, including Hawaii. Not only that she runs faster than all but two men and smashes the course record in Australia of all places - AMAZING, well done Chrissie"

    Monday, April 07, 2008

    Monday Morning Chuckle

    (Courtesy of Sian - so if you're Irish you know who to speak to)

    Pat and Mick walking down a street in London and Pat happens to look in one
    Of the shop windows and sees a sign that catches his eye. The sign said

    'Suits £5.00 each, Shirts £2.00 each, trousers £2.50 per pair'.

    Pat says to his pal, 'Mick, will you look at that! We could buy a whole lot
    Of dose, and when we get back to Ireland , we could make a fortune. Now when
    We go into the shop, you be quiet, okay? Just let me do all the talking
    Cause if they hear our accent, they might not be nice to us. I'll speak in
    My best English accent.'

    'Roight y'are, Pat, I'll keep me mouth shut, so I will.' says Mick.

    In they go and Paddy, in his best English accent, says 'I'll take 50 suits
    At £5.00 each, 100 shirts at £2.00 each, and 50 pairs of trousers at £2.50
    Each. I'll back up my van and ......'

    The owner of the shop interrupts, 'You're from Ireland , aren't you?'

    'Well...yes,' says a surprised Pat. 'How de hell d' y' know dat?'

    The owner says,
    'Because this is a dry cleaners.'

    Wednesday, April 02, 2008

    A Message From Monsieur Sam

    "Hi Folks

    How about putting Laguna Phuket Triathlon in your race diary this year? A few of us missed it in ’07 due to Ironman duties in Busselton. The Phuket race has a ‘big race’ feel about it, is a well managed event and it offers the opportunity for a nice weekend away. So, how about it? If you are interested, now is the time to book hotels and flights to take advantage of the early booking offers.

    I arrived at my house in France last night and I woke up this morning to the view in the attached photo. Terrible isn’t it? Ah, someone has got to do it!


    Tuesday, April 01, 2008

    Flying Penguins - AMAZING

    (Courtesy of Chris Wayman)

    KLIM 2008 and Those Darned Kenyans

    OK folks here it is my most controvesial piece of blogging ever.

    I did the KL half marathon on Sunday, I've been accused of being a slacker, lazy, uncommitted and goodness only knows what else because I didn't do the full marathon. Well, I don't care, as you may know I've been injured and am currently undergoing physio, that's my excuse and I'm sticking to it.

    Anyway, without killing myself I managed a credible 1 hr 38 for what was reportedly closer to 23k than 21k so I was pretty satisfied.

    Shilpa also did the half marathon completing it in 2 hr 20 having only done 2 long runs since she started running again. She was going to do the 10k but then stepped up a level to the 21k - awesome.

    Now for the controvesial bit. Sunday's races, whether it be the 10k, half or full marathon were dominated by the Kenyans. There was a tent at the finish that said 1st, 2nd and 3rd place finishers - it was full of Kenyans; it should have just said Kenyans here please!

    This Kenyan dominance is causing a lot of bad feeling especially amongst the established local runners who have trained incredibly hard over the years and reached a point where they were getting top three places and earning some decent prizemoney. Now these Kenyans arrive and win all the races.

    Where does that leave the Malaysian elite field? They are understandibly upset and are calling for some action to be taken by the organisers to stop the Kenyans taking what should be their prize money. I know a lot of people reading this are very sypathetic and also think somthing should be done too. I read a number of blogs saying as much.

    I think I have the answer, it's very simple and it will sort this problem out once and for all......>

    To all runners who are unhappy about being beaten...GET FASTER OR GET OVER IT!

    When I race triathlons I can't believe that the likes of Don Khor (Malaysia), Ip (Macau) Iwata (Japan) and Patrick Potvin (Canada) are placed in the same category as me, it's just not fair. Every time I go up an age-group, there they are waiting to kick my butt. Not only that but since the "Elite Category" seems to have been discontinued in Malaysian Tri's I now have to do battle with Malaysia's finest, Razani.

    Is this fair? Do you know how much I train? Do you know how angry my wife gets when I'm trying to squeeze in just one more swim, ride or run for the week? All these athletes are lighter than me, they've been doing it longer than me, they all have more natural ability than me (especially swimming) - I'll ask again IS IT FAIR THAT THEY SHOULD BE ALLOWED TO TAKE MY PODIUM SPOT?

    You all know the answer of course, yes it's fair, but what should I do about it?

    My philosophy has always been the same, GET FASTER OR GET OVER IT, and you know what, I have gotten faster! I sometimes beat Don, I finished a dualthon 2nd age-grouper overall and just 2 minutes behind the winner Razani, I usually beat Patrick (not always though), in the last couple of years I've pulled off the odd victory against Ip and in Miri last year Iwata out-sprinted me to the line in the Sprint Distance Tri and was only a 100 metres in front of me on the OD Tri (I'm coming for you Iwata-san)

    I say, BRING IT ON, give me the competition, it makes me stronger, faster, hungrier and I will beat them (or die trying). The few victories I've had against these amazing althletes have been very sweet indeed, the many loses have just made me train harder. How would I feel if Malaysian Tri's got filled up by Kenyans? Or top European, Australian and US triathletes for that matter? My answer: - "Wow, what awesome company to keep, international level competition, how much better would that make me (a lot I'd suggest)."

    I've come a long way since I was 107kg, beer swilling, cigar smoking fatty in 2000, thank you to my friends, training partners and long suffering wife for supporting me along the way; but when it comes to the competitions thank you Don, Iwata, Patrick, Ip, Rozani and those many others that have AND WILL beat me for it's you that drive me onwards and make me better - you are the competition that makes each COMPETITION.

    Malaysian runners, stop ya bitchin, GET FASTER OR GET OVER IT.