Friday, May 29, 2009

Mountain Biking 101 - the big test

A quick overview of this morning's outing. Just to recap I've ridden a mountain bike just once before and fell of twice. I've entered the Xterra Triathlon in Kuantan which takes place next weekend and thought I ought to get some practise in.

Met Stuart and KK this morning at 10am having dropped the boys off at school. Headed to the Mountain bike track in FRIM (Forestry Reserve). Stopped to adjust the saddle - looked up and they were gone.

I headed out to the track and continued on expecting to come across them any minute. I got to the bottom of "Steroid Hill" and bumped into an ex-colleague of mine, Dinesh Karna. He's embarking on a fitness campaign and was taking a breather while another ex-colleague, Neil Ford was whizzing around Steroid Hill. Sure enough he arrived and agreed to give me some pointers as we went up the hill and then on to the really steep top section - Mango Hill.

I got into a comfortable gear and to my surprise pulled away from Neil - so far so good, we then took an unexpected right turn up Mango Hill and I was in my middle chain ring - oh-oh! Never mind, I stood up and started trying to power up, problem was the back wheel kept slipping no matter how much I leaned back. Never mind again, I kept as much traction as I could just kept powering it along, then I caught up with Neil and my bike handling skills showed out. I drifted to the left, got in the soft stuff and came to an abrupt halt.

Now the real problem was restarting - very difficult - this hill is steep, I was using Look pedals and cleats that were full of mud - not good. Had a few aborted attempts and then went head over heels down the hill - first (and I'm pleased to say last) fall of the day. Eventually I got going and joined Neil at the top.

Coming down was amazing, I have no problem coming down a hill on the highway at 95kph on a tri or road bike but coming down this track was another matter. Very scary but very exhilarating. Neil, disappeared like a flash, it was awesome to watch. Anyway, got down and met up with Dinesh again. Had a quick chat then we headed in our respective directions.

As I rounded the first corner I bumped into Stuart and Jason (KK had to make a meeting). I did an about turn and we headed up Steroid Hill again but the other way around, steeper and more rutted. I am pleased to say that I got to the top without any problems (no Mango Hill this time, time was getting short - I think we were all happy about that). I was getting better on the decent this time and was sure Stuart would have been impressed seeing me pull away from him - but then he shot past me - clearly much work for me to do on the descents.

Horribly dehydrated I headed out for a painful but necessary 4k, 20 minute run. It went pretty well so Xterra here I come (got to think about the pedals though - especially because my shoes disintegrated today).

Absolutely outstanding morning, huge fun, huge learning experience, great company - Life if good. Better do some work now.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Password Inadequacy

(Courtesy of Caroline Chamber)

CLICK TO ENLARGE - Hahahahaha!

Take that!!!!

The big fella has been watching The Matrix again, not letting reality get in the way of a good plan.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009


Great advert, gorgeous models, made me laugh and probably will be watched more than once by the chaps out there - enjoy (Thanks to Nick Flynn).

RICE Racing update

I just received this from Nick Flyger - all very exciting news.

"Hi All,

Over the past 2 months we have tried and tested a few things to see how many people are keen to have regular races. The response has been great and we are now ready to take the next step so without further ado here are some important announcements...

- We have our own Domain name! You can now stay up to date on Rice Racing via the new web address Hopefully it will now be easier for you to tell your friends how to find us. If you need to contact us or have any problems with the website please send an email to:

- In order to prevent cross posting to other local mailing lists please take the time to Join the E-Mailing List and/or the FaceBook group "Rice Racing - Get Cooked on a Bike!". From now on all announcements will be through these two sources only. I expect email to be limited to 1 per week at the max.

- I have updated the race course page on the website to include better maps and instructions.

- I have settled on using three racing circuits. Two are south and east of the city but within easy driving or riding. I am working on a circuit north of the city to accommodate people living up that way.

***NEXT RACE 6th JUNE***
- For those not going to XTERRA we will have a race at the Putrajaya Circuit on Saturday the 6th of June. Start at the usual time of 8am.

- We have purchased race numbers and are now ready to begin registrations and grading. So at 8am on Sunday June the 21st we will have a Team Time Trial that will also serve as a registration and grading day.

We will race on the 56 km E21 (Kajang-Mantin-Kajang) Circuit (directions HERE)

Teams of four (at least three must finish together)
Two categories: Normal Bicycles or Bicycles with Aerodynamic Components
Entry Fee is 10 RM which covers the cost of race numbers. You keep those numbers for the rest of the race races this year
Based on your team time we will grade everyone so that at future races can have graded bunches or handicapped starts
If you cannot find a team or your team is short of members register anyway and I will try to match you with other people looking for teammates
Several days prior to the TTT your team will be given a start time. Please ensure you are on the line and ready to start at exactly this time.

You can register your team HERE

Nick Flyger"

True Chat

(Coutesy of Ian Hay)

Subject: Actual exchanges between pilots and control towers

Tower: "Delta 351, you have traffic at 10 o'clock, 6 miles!"
Delta 351: "Give us another hint! We have digital watches!"

Tower: "TWA 2341, for noise abatement turn right 45 Degrees."
TWA 2341: "Center, we are at 35,000 feet. How much noise can we make up here?"
Tower: "Sir, have you ever heard the noise a 747 makes when it hits a 727?"

From an unknown aircraft waiting in a very long takeoff queue: "I'm bored!"
Ground Traffic Control: "Last aircraft transmitting, identify yourself immediately!"
Unknown aircraft: "I said I was bored, not stupid!"

O'Hare Approach Control to a 747: "United 329 heavy, your traffic is a Fokker, one o'clock, three miles, Eastbound."
United 329: "Approach, I've always wanted to say this...I've got the little Fokker in sight."

A student became lost during a solo cross-country flight. While attempting to locate the aircraft on radar, ATC asked, "What was your last known position?"
Student: "When I was number one for takeoff."

A DC-10 had come in a little hot and thus had an exceedingly long roll out after touching down.
San Jose Tower Noted: "American 751, make a hard right turn at the end of the runway, if you are able. If you are not able, take the Guadeloupe exit off Highway 101, make a right at the lights and return to the airport."

A Pan Am 727 flight, waiting for start clearance in Munich , overheard the following:
Lufthansa (in German): "Ground, what is our start clearance time?"
Ground (in English): "If you want an answer you must speak in English."
Lufthansa (in English): "I am a German, flying a German airplane, in Germany . Why must I speak English?"
Unknown voice from another plane (in a beautiful British accent): "Because you lost the bloody war!"

Tower: "Eastern 702, cleared for takeoff, contact Departure on frequency 124.7"
Eastern 702: "Tower, Eastern 702 switching to Departure. By the way, after we lifted off we saw some kind of dead animal on the far end of the runway."
Tower: "Continental 635, cleared for takeoff behind Eastern 702, contact Departure on frequency 124.7. Did you copy that report from Eastern 702?"
Continental 635: "Continental 635, cleared for takeoff, roger; and yes, we copied Eastern... We've already notified our caterers."

One day the pilot of a Cherokee 180 was told by the tower to hold short of the active runway while a DC-8 landed. The DC-8 landed, rolled out, turned around, and taxied back past the Cherokee. Some quick-witted comedian in the DC-8 crew got on the radio and said, "What a cute little plane. Did you make it all by yourself?"
The Cherokee pilot, not about to let the insult go by, came back with a real zinger: "I made it out of DC-8 parts. Another landing like yours and I'll have enough parts for another one."

The German air controllers at Frankfurt Airport are renowned as a short-tempered lot. They not only expect one to know one's gate parking location, but how to get there without any assistance from them. So it was with some amusement that we (a Pan Am 747) listened to the following exchange between Frankfurt ground control and a British Airways 747, call sign Speedbird 206.
Speedbird 206: "Frankfurt, Speedbird 206! Clear of active runway."
Ground: "Speedbird 206. Taxi to gate Alpha One-Seven."
The BA 747 pulled onto the main taxiway and slowed to a stop.
Ground: "Speedbird, do you not know where you are going?"
Speedbird 206: "Stand by, Ground, I'm looking up our gate location now."
Ground (with quite arrogant impatience): "Speedbird 206, have you not been to Frankfurt before?"
Speedbird 206 (coolly): "Yes, twice in 1944, but it was dark, -- And I didn't land."

While taxiing at London's Airport, the crew of a US Air flight departing for Ft. Lauderdale made a wrong turn and came nose to nose with a United 727.
An irate female ground controller lashed out at the US Air crew, screaming: "US Air 2771, where the hell are you going? I told you to turn right onto Charlie taxiway! You turned right on Delta! Stop right there. I know it's difficult for you to tell the difference between C and D, but get it right!"
Continuing her rage to the embarrassed crew, she was now shouting hysterically: "God! Now you've screwed everything up! It'll take forever to sort this out! You stay right there and don't move till I tell you to! You can expect progressive taxi instructions in about half an hour, and I want you to go exactly where I tell you, when I tell you, and how I tell you! You got that, US Air 2771?"

"Yes, ma'am," the humbled crew responded.

Naturally, the ground control communications frequency fell terribly silent after the verbal bashing of US Air 2771. Nobody wanted to chance engaging the irate ground controller in her current state of mind. Tension in every cockpit out around Gatwick was definitely running high. Just then an unknown pilot broke the silence and keyed his microphone, asking: "Wasn't I married to you once?"

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

2012 Olympic Posters (proposed)

(Courtesy of Sonja Jefferson)

Simon says: - "I love them especially the cycling, sailing and fencing ones."

Check out the rest of the designer of these posters at

Susan Boyle - you've just got to love this lady

Performing in Britain's Got Talent semi final - She makes to the final OF COURSE.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Moutain Biking in FRIM on Friday Morning

I have made a bit of a rash decision and entered the Xterra race which is in two weekends time. Having only ridden a Mountain Bike once and fallen off twice I need some rapid practise - a Mountain Bike 101 "Crash" course is how I like to phrase my needs(pun intended).

So anyone that would like to ride in FRIM on Friday morning, get some air in their lungs - mainly through laughing at me then please leave a comment below. All assistance greatly appreciated.

For my Dad - Yes Peter Cross, YOU

Mohan the Great writes: -

"Dear All Fellow Runners,

"An Inspiration To All" - I think best describes Dr Roy.

Dr Ashis Roy, a cardiologist at 76, took ONLY 6h32min to do the Delaware Marathon in Wilmington (anyone knows where the hell this place is???).
He did 2 marathons in 2 weeks and plans another - 3 in a month !!!

I can still remember back in 1996, after completing the then Singapore International Marathon, I called the organisers, SAAA ( now called SAA , somewhat equivalent to KL's FTAAA ) and suggested that they should organise more marathons in Singapore.
The answer I got was: "Your body CANNOT do more than 2 marathons a year".
Now I know that government funds went to the wrong organisation!

I know of another gentleman from Singapore, Mr Chan Meng Hui, who at the age of 78, did the Bangkok and Singapore Standard Chartered Marathons in two weeks. He too, just like Dr Roy, was a 'late starter', started running only after retirement.

I hope Dr Pui San ( ) would forward this article to her boss ( Red Turban ) - tell Red Turban that I shall sponsor him his first pair of running shoes!

If you know of any young wanna-be runners, forward them this article - I am sure it would be an inspiration.

Meanwhile, enjoy running and have fun. For those running the 42k and 84k Sundown Marathon, race pack collection starts today. Good luck to all!



Simon says: -

"My Dad, Peter, took up running at the grand young age of 74 and readers of this blog will know he has completed several 10k races and has even knocked out a 15k training run.

I've tried to plant ideas in his head about a half marathon but hey, why not go the whole hog - which marathon do you want to do Dad? I'll come and join you for it and I'm sure Angela will too - what do you say?"

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Avia Bolts

Hoping to do a test of these runners in the coming days - watch this space.

Ironman and pro cyclist Steve Larsen dies

(Courtesy of Velonews)

Steve Larsen, probably the only professional who competed and won major races as a mountain biker, road biker and triathlete, died Tuesday evening after collapsing during a running workout.

Larsen was 39 and he and his wife Carrie Larsen have five children.

"He was doing a track workout and he collapsed. They did CPR immediately and an ambulance arrived quickly, but they weren't able to save him," his friend Michael Nyberg told VeloNews

Another friend of the family confirmed Larsen's death, saying that an autopsy is pending, but that he apparently suffered a heart attack.

Larsen began racing in the 1980s and was on the Motorola team for three years in the early 1990s, racing the Giro d'Italia and other major European events. He then moved into mountain biking, winning the NORBA National Cross-Country title in 1997 and 2000.

In 2001, he switched to triathlon, qualifying for the Ironman in his first year in the sport, and finishing ninth at the Hawaii event. He also competed in XTerra offroad triathlons. He was reportedly the only American to compete in the world championships for road, mountain bike, track, cyclocross and triathlon. He was a member of the 1993 U.S. world road championship team that helped Lance Armstrong win his first world title.

Simon says: - What a great loss and so sad. It seems that the autopsy suggests that the cause of death was viral related weakening his heart, rather than a heart attack per se.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Powerman 2009

There's no stopping me today - having entered Xterra I've just entered Powerman 2009. Having had to eat humble pie last year to get a late entry I wasn't going to make the same mistake this year.

Great race, great organisation, great race location (just a b*tch to get there) and provided you enter before the deadline then no humble pie is required (actually people managed to enter after I did last year but for some reason I was the only one made to grovel!!! Oh well guess that was my Karma).

It's a spade

(Courtesy of Bill Haswell)

"Political correctness is a doctrine, fostered by a delusional, illogical minority, and rabidly promoted by an unscrupulous mainstream media, which holds forth the proposition that it is entirely possible to pick up a turd by the clean end."

R.J.Wiedemann, Lt.Col.- USMC Ret.

Newton Review

So Newton's, how did they fair?

The answer is very very well. Would I buy a pair? No - but that's not to say I wouldn't highly recommend them. Read on...

I am predominantly a forefoot striker so they work very well for me. If you are a heel striker then forget about it - stop reading and go salivate over the Shimanao Di2 pictures. However, I am not a totally neutral runner but a mild supranator and consequently I was not landing centrally on the forefoot but rather on the outside. Over the first 21k this was not noticeable but when I started the New Balance 15k run straight afterwards things were a little different.

Not only did I notice the lack of support but in my tiredness I was running with a far less pronounced forefoot strike (as any tired runner would naturally do) - I found the lack of support to be a little disconcerting and painful during the run and especially downhills but for the next few days I had knee pain (I never have this), calf pain and hip pain. I have over extended myself before but these injuries, although temporary, were very different this time.

Don't read too much into this though, the simple fact is that these shoes were fabulous while I was running fast and strong. In fact I didn't feel great when I started out in the morning and never found a "second wind" so I was expecting my first 10k time to Sri Hartamas to be around 50m30s, I was quite surprised to see it at 47m15s - a good time for me.

The loop around the petrol station and the return run were similarly better times than I felt I'd achieved. That says a massive amount in itself.

So why wouldn't I buy a pair? First of all I love my Asics. I train in a pair of heavy duty Nimbus and race in a pair of DS Trainers (despite the name these are probably the best racing shoe I've ever come across in terms of lightness, support and shear speed).

Secondly, I'm probably best at 10k to 1/2 marathon runs and Sprint to Olympic Distance triathlons - perfect for the Newtons. However, for some inexplicable reason I keep entering Ironmans and Marathons - I guess it must be the romance of the distances because I don't do half as well in them nor do I enjoy them as much as the shorter races. Anyway, the point being that I don't believe that Newtons are built for marathon distances unless you are a very efficient, light and neutral runner.

So in conclusion, Newtons are: -
- very fast, if they work for you mechanically
- fabulous for anything up to a half marathon
- they are light
- do not retain much weight in the guise of sweat
- look fabulous
- extremely comfortable (until you start getting tired)

Buy them for sure if you are a forefoot striker, reasonably efficient runner and are looking for an extra bit of speed over 5k to 21k races. If you haven't found the PERFECT shoe for you yet and you fit these criteria then go for it.

Just accept that these shoes will put extra load on your calves so they will take time getting used to but I predict your fastest times yet once you've spent three months training in them.

However, bear in mind: -
- not for heel strikers
- not for heavy or inefficient runners
- not for marathons (unless you are very light and very efficient)

Thank you to QuickSport ( for making these shoes available to me. I must admit I would have liked to have kept them for a few weeks to really put them through their paces but alas that wasn't to be. I predict that there are going to be a lot of people in KL running in them and going quicker than they ever have before.

I'm going to stick with my Asics DS Trainers though and work on losing a few kgs in order to keep up.

Now look what stupid thing I've done

Yes, you've guessed it I've entered Xterra!!! Agggggggggghhhhhhhhh!

However, the swim I understand and the run although I'm sure it will be a tough off-roader my biggest issue is the Mountain Bike - I have actually ridden a Mountain Bike - ONCE. Actually it's a very very very very heeeeaaaavvvyyy mountain bike that I bought for Shilpa to get her out and about. It's so heavy it leaves indentation marks on the tarmac.

I'm strangely quite excited about it - I haven't really been motivated since Ironman and Lake Kenyir was a personal wash out so at the very least this should be different and huge fun.

It'll give the off-roaders a chance to snigger at my bike and me struggling around the course so whatever happens someone will have a laugh.

Now then, this bit is serious, can someone who knows how to mountain bike please volunteer to show me how to do it? Pleeeaaasssee.

My one and only ride was at Frim and I fell off twice and then struggled to get going again - stand up on the pedals and the back wheel spins = fall off. Sit on the saddle and the front wheel comes of the ground = fall off. WTF Heeeeellllppppp.

A few more thoughts for the day

(Courtesy of Dave Clenton)

1. Good judgment comes from bad experience ... and most of that comes from bad judgment.

2. A closed mouth gathers no foot.

3. There are two excellent theories for arguing with women. Neither one works.

Simon says: - I'd like to tell you which one is my favourite but I want to go home tonight.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Six time Ironman world champion Dave Scott struck by car

(Courtesy of Lance Armstrong via Twitter and

Six time World Ironman Champion Dave Scott was hit by a car while biking today in Boulder, Colorado.

Initial reports suggest that Scott was struck by a car making a u-turn on Linden Avenue in the Wonderland Hill part of Boulder, Colorado.

Witness at the scene of the accident report that Scott was conscious and talking after being struck, and that it looked to them like the car accident had potentially broken Scott's collar bone or separated his shoulder with other multiple cuts on his legs and arms.

Marshman 1/2 Ironman - Chris Wayman


Boy what a race!!! I have never in a tri looked forward so much to getting onto the run!!

5am - The day started out OK....bit grey, gentle breeze and a little chilly (12oC). Made the call for long sleeve base layer, tri top and shorts, and knee warmers.....All under my wetsuit

7am - Weather wasn't too bad for the swim (1.9k)....3 lengths of the lake.....nicely lined out by water-ski slalom buoys! The second length was starting to get a bit choppy, but could feel the wetsuit hat working as I had warm water round by ears!! My lips were numbing by end of second length....but managed to pick up some feet for a final draft down the lake.

Into T1.....I put on more clothes inc a beanie hat under my helmet and on with a windproof gillet....and off onto the road...dripping as my many layers of wet clothes dried out!!

First 15 miles were quick on main roads (av 24mph [38.5kph]), then we turned onto the country lanes (very pretty), but wind building, and still couldn't feel my feet from the swim. Bike was feeling good despite the lack of hard rides this year We dropped onto the Marsh and turned for the last 15 miles.....head wind gusting 30mph [48km]...and getting darker....I rode the last 15miles on the small front chain ring....then it poured (just a shower...right) and the wind got worse....was now in a lower gear that I had been in on the hills earlier. Remember our day down on the Marsh (when we went on the little train)....flat, exposed and throw in rain/hail and try racing!! As I passed Camber Sands, there were 150 kite/windsurfers out....who is madder triathletes of surfers when the weather is like that I thought? Was so relieved to come back into Lydd and see the transition....Chantal and the kids had come down to watch and were stood by the road shivering.

Even more chuffed when I saw I has achieved 19.5mph average (and the bike was long at 59miles [94.5km])

T2.....keep all my clothes on...even now the sun was out...but still blowing olde boots. Started the run...first 3 miles feet were just warming up and I thought too many clothes I'm going to overheat....but then it hailed and I was running along trying to hide under my baseball hat peak...with a hand protecting my face from the driving hail. Was really happy with the run....esp as the last 4 miles were into the wind and by now the gusty 30mph had turned into a cold constant 30mph!

Amazingly as I finished there where still lots going out on the run and these folk would be out for 7+ hours, think how they must have felt!!

Swim 00:30:34
T1 00:03:31
Bike 03:01:00
T2 00:01:44
Run 01:42:25
Overall 05:19:15 - 29th place

So all in all, a tough race...would have been fantastic if the weather was right....

My arm hurt this morning....face is glowing from the wind burn....but there rest of me feels good.....Bring on the GB age group championships in Bala in 4 weeks


Simon says: - If only Chantal hadn't sent me the photos - looks like your biggest problem was getting a sunburn Chris. I accept that there may have been a gentle breeze blowing but come on dude HARDEN UP.

Joking aside Chris still beat my best half Ironman time even in these conditions - WELL DONE. I can't wait until we go head to head at Alpe d'Huez Long Course Triathlon - bring it on.

Love the new Shimanao Di2

(Courtesy of Daniel Lim)

Dave Zabriskie's bike sporting the new Shimano electronic gears. I've just got to have a set (2 sets actually - 2 bikes afterall, can't be unfair to one or the other).

Not surte about the bird's nest of wires behind the stem though!! (CLICK PICTURES TO ENLARGE)

Dial before you dig

(Courtesy of Dave Clenton)

You may or may not know about the law in the USA requiring you call for utility locating before you do any excavation. The pictures below are a result of a farmer using a post hole digger without calling for "locates" and he hit an underground, high-pressure cross country gas pipe.

They never did find the guy………. Took out 2 homes. (CLICK ON THE PICTURES TO ENLARGE).

More of the same

(Courtesy of Nick Flynn)

"I have an existential map; it has ‘you are here’ written all over it."- Steven Wright

"When choosing between two evils, I always like to try the one I’ve never tried before."- Mae West (1892-1980)

"Happiness is good health and a bad memory."- Ingrid Bergman (1917-1982)"In the beginning the Universe was created. This has made a lot of people very angry and is widely regarded as a bad move."- Douglas Adams (1952-2001)

"You laugh at me because I am different, but I laugh at you because you are all the same."- Unknown [Simon's favourite]

"Never try to teach a pig to sing. It wastes your time and annoys the pig."- Proverb

Monday, May 18, 2009

Alternative Quote of the Day

If at first you don't succeed, skydiving is not for you.

Courtesy of Dave Clenton

[Be prepared, there are many more coming]

What a loser

7 Lessons that a beginner needs to learn: -

1. Know your limits - 36k with the first 21k fast may sound easy - but wait until you're out there!

2. When trying radical new shoes don't try them on your longest training run of the year.

3. When the podiatrist says "Wear these orthopedic inserts and never run without them again" - don't forget his advice/instruction/command. And definitely not if you're wearing a radical new shoe.

4. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate - especially in the tropics, especially running long and fast and especially after being a little H2O depleted after a long bike ride the day before.

5. Nutrition - even if you're planning to do a long run without breakfast or gels then at least take a gel with you just in case. If you remember to do that then don't be an ar$e, remember to take it.

6. Sodium - especially important in relation to 4 and 5. If you're in the tropics, going long and hard and don't eat anything then you are going to suffer from sodium depletion.

7. NEVER, run with your wife while suffering the above pitfalls otherwise you have to hear those vicious, soul-destroying phrases such as: -
- "I'll wait for you at the top of the hill"
- "Go on run a bit now, it's flat"
- "Not far now, you can do it"
and probably the worst: -
- "I think you're doing really well considering..."

Simon says: - "I'm sure you've guessed it by now but I suffered from all of the above yesterday in the New Balance 15k. I did the 21k fast beforehand and felt pretty average but amazingly my time was great (4th fastest over that course actually), I forgot to take the gel I carried with me at the 11k point and clearly didn't drink enough.

Having got back to the car park I called Shilpa to find that she was still in bed!!!! My race started in 8 minutes and hers in 23 minutes - with great credit to her though, she raced to get there and we started about 15 minutes late - fortunately we just caught race marshalls as they were leaving their posts and then caught some back runners so at least we didn't stray from the course.

While I was waiting for Shilpa to get there I forgot to take a gel AGAIN, so no fuel nor sodium, I drank all the water I had (so clearly I hadn't brought enough) and although I'd brought my regular running shoes and orthopedic inserts, for some mad, insane, crazy reason I chose not to change into them from the Newton's that I was trying out.

After about 3K I had severe stomach cramps, lack of sodium I'm pretty sure now as my kidneys are in a lot of pain today. Soon after I was walking on an off.

Shilpa really didn't want to be there having just got back from a trip to Thailand the day before and having overslept, but she ran/walked (I dictated the walking element as she was fine) all the way with me and was really sweet and supportive. Interesting when the shoe is on the other foot - it's easy to see how supportive and cheerful comments don't always get interpreted that way when one is in pain and misery.

As for the Newtons - I was pretty impressed, I'll write up my thoughts later this week.

Quote of the Day

You may be disappointed if you fail, but you are doomed of you don't try.

- Beverly Sills

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Ngae - Latest Update - Amazing News

Update: My op was on 31.3.2009. The neuro surgeon told me previously not to run for 3 months after the op in order for the bone fusion and brain recovery. I was only to walk for that 3 months period. A month ago in the last appointment he cleared me for swim . I started my swim then. I had been training fast walk since two weeks after the op.

The recent appointment with my neuro surgeon was on last thursday (6 weeks since my op). On thursday after his examination he cleared me to run!!! I feel so thankful to God. I think the neuro surgeon had not operated someone like this before. Now I can run THOUGH NOT TOO INTENSIVE AND NOT TO BUMP INTO OTHERS.

It has been two and half months since my last run (in IM Langkawi on 28.2.2009). I did my first 5K run this morning at the Lake Gardens and felt so happy inside. This is perfect timing. Pacesetters 15K run is tomorrow. I called Pacesetters office but it is too late to register but I will be running the 15K with Jenny without registration. I will be slow but I will run it.

Looking at 2010 Ironman. But I m not sure when to go on my bike again. I can't afford a fall from the bike unless I am sure that the skull has regained its original toughness to protect the brain. As the surgeon put it, I am given the second life ( Beside the risk of the op, I could easily have had a seizure in the swim in Langkawi IM and sank). I can't be hoping for the third.

The surgeon told me before the op about the many risk of a brain op. Beside the risk during the op there are many post-op risks i.e. memory loss, fit/siezure, speech disability, vision problem, inbalance in walking etc etc. I thank God for my second life seems so good and I have not encounter these problems. I thank everyone from near and far for their prayers and their thoughts for me during my op.

Looks like I can revise my original target to walk KL marathon on 28 June...

Friday, May 15, 2009

Breaking News - Disco Dave shaves legs

Simon says: - "I have been teasing Disco Dave for the longest time about his unkempt hairy legs. I never for one moment thought that he'd take me seriously and actually commit to the ranks of the hairless ones - not only that he is doing his first tri outside the comfort zone of his Malaysian based tri buddies - Dave has committed, he IS a triathlete. I'm far from laughing Dave, I applaud you - have an awesome race - looking forward to the race write-up (an Exclusive of course!)as soon as you can get it to us .

Here's what Dave had to say: -

"Hi Simon,

Hope you are well Buddy.

I’m off to do my 1st solo Triathlon here in Taiwan (Hualien International Cup) without all my mates from TTH.

I have however taken a leaf out of your book and set myself a testing target of <30mins for the 1.5km swim, <90mins for the 45km bike (with some serious hill climbs apparently) & <60mins for the 10km run so I can get inside 3 hours.

I’m sharing this with you so that you can act as my “Jimminy Cricket” conscious but to also share with you, and this is the bit that will make you smile, that I have finally taken your advice and am typing this note to you as a “plucked pheasant”.

I have to confess that I feel like I am actually bloody naked mate but given my lack of training I’m relying on this lack of drag to help me beat my target times J

Will let you know how I get on next week when I get back. Meantime, I hope you’ve not done yourself a mischief by laughing so much at this news.

See you soon Buddy.

All the best


Now these guys really are athletes

(Courtesy of Disco Dave)

You've just gotta love this.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Newton Running Shoes

Well they're here at last, in Malaysia I mean. Probably the most innovative running shoes since Nike introduced the waffle sole. Does that mean they work though?

I got back from a swift 21k to Sri Hartamas on Sunday morning, suffering quite badly after a hard hilly ride to Titi the day before. Not only that but I ran headfirst into the Bomba 10k and then a few minutes later the Bomba 7k. Thousands of people head down running at me head on - it got quite scary.

Nowhere to go - you might imagine how many close encounters I had. Anyway, I survived but probably didn't make too many friends - "What was this foreign idiot doing running the wrong way?", they were probably thinking (the less polite ones were probably thinking darker thoughts with more colourful language)!!!

So back to the Newton's; I got back to the car park feeling very sore (and a bit battered and bruised) but had heard from one of the guys at the turnaround point that QuickSport ( the local distributors for the Newtons were allowing runners to test the shoes.

I've been anxious to try a pair for some time so i just couldn't resist. I eventually found a pair of 44's and off I hobbled on my rapidly seizing-up legs. I tootled around Lake Gardens for about a 4k run and was pleasantly surprised by the outcome.

As you may know the Newton's work on the basis of forefoot striking i.e. primarily landing on the forefoot. They have protruding dimples (see photo) which they claim recycle the energy from the foot landing into the foot take-off.

My principle concern was stability and thus injury but I'm pleased to say that these shoes were extremely stable and very comfortable to wear. As for their efficiency, claimed energy recycling and all-round performance I'll wait until I've managed to get hold of a pair for a few long runs before I do a full review (or reviews). My legs on Sunday weren't exactly the most "in-tune" with the road as they will be in a few weeks - in fact they felt like a couple of pile-drivers so it would be unfair for me to evaluate these shoes until I'm a little more energized and a little more elasticity returns to my tired limbs.

I did see a pair that a runner had used who was clearly a heel striker - the heel was shredded and since the shoe is totally designed for forefoot striking my simple advice is on consider this shoe if you land mainly on your forefoot - any more than that and you'll have to wait and see - watch this space.

Ironman Langkawi 2010

Entry completed, flights booked - commitment made!

Are you with me???? Come on, you know who you are...if you're thinking, "Could he mean me?" then you know the answer - of course I mean you!

Thursday, May 07, 2009

Visit Australia Promo (spoof)

(Courtesy of Paul Hobbs)

Very funny.

Pelvic Floor Muscles

(Courtesy of Mohan)

Simon says: - I haven't actually got much to say about this at all - I struggle to motivate myself to do any core exercises these days so I think my Pelvic Floor Muscles may remain dangerously inactive.


Wednesday, May 06, 2009

I'm Chuffed - Top Brit in Malaysia Ironman

Got May's copy of 220 Triathlon today and there it was - lovely jubbly.

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Lance's new bike for the Giro Italia

Bruce Lee playing Table Tennis with nunchaku

(Courtesy of Bill)

Beware these supplements

Simon Says: - Paul Lee sent me this - not something I use either but beware if you do.

"Hi Simon.
Just thought to share this bit of news about the recall of Hydroxycut by the FDA following deaths an liver failure. Go to:

I don't use it but just in case weight watchers or endurance athletes reading yr blog are taking it( there is an energy enhancer too) it might be good for them to know."