Just Write Just Right

This begins a series of short posts that may or may not be for long. There is still the disconnect. I have said this over and over again.

Anyway, there is still comfort – not guilt – in running close to 7 kilometers, then going home and having panaderia-bought Spanish bread and Finetti (aka upper middle class Nutella) for dinner. And a glass of cold cranberry juice. Whatever makes you happy, you eat it.

Drawing for a Cause

bitmoji183224066No, I’m not making some art for charity, although I wish I am that talented to pull it off.

By “drawing”, I meant not doing tasks and not going to events I expressed interest in. Different factors are in play: priorities, finances, on some level the genuine interest, and tons of excuses. 🙂 HistoryCon? Pop Comicon? Reader’s Fest? Book yardsale? Cinemalaya/Cinematheque/Cinema76? Give me my drawing board, hahaha!

The tiny tinge of regret does not overpower the reason why I put them off — okay lang talaga. I can catch up in some other way. I am not busy busy with other things. Very minimal activities lang — reading (still), organizing my online storage (I mean, ebook cataloguing and album sorting are therapeutic activities), and believe it or not, working out.

Yes, working out. I only started last week, and despite raised brows and carino brutal chides, I still don’t have plans of stopping. Knowing my lameduck (pwede bang lamepig, hahaha) self, sweating it out and stretching my body parts were very strange concepts. I plan to change that. My friend Raft3r sent a stolen shot of me at the treadmill and mygahd, medyo unacceptable na. I’ve always liked my chubby self pero minsan it comes to you na hmm, hindi na bagay, pretty self! Time to work on it, and again, not aiming for the media-obsessed, plump-is-no-beautiful frame of mind. Iproportion lang.

bitmoji-454067576Working out is hard, moreso for people like me who barely stretched. There is something fulfilling in completing a guided workout though. Sweating profusely is another thing. Endorphinssss! But I still have to get myself checked because even if I no longer eat after a workout, I noticed I grew larger after a few days. I may be doing something wrong if nothing is wrong with me. Seriously, one of the reasons why I didn’t enjoy workout before was because I gained more weight when I started going to the gym or running in races. Food portion control does not work on me as fast also. Tumatanda na talaga.

Really, why am I doing this , you may ask. It’s for something I dabbled into with zero, with nil, with no realistic sign that I am up to it. I am praying for it because it’s more the mindset for everything to fall into place. Will definitely share once it’s finally happening. In the meantime, I will continue working out. Hindi man matuloy, hindi man pumayat, kahit lumakas na lang. Tipong I won’t see silver stars and feel like I’m dying after going up a footbridge, mga ganoon.

This is part of something I learned from a talk I attended: do something new each month. It does not have to be large scale, just something you have not done before. Thank you, The Better Story project for the inspiration. Hopefully, in getting into this groove, I won’t be drawing as much as I do.

Rerun

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My race bib and bracelet markers. I made it, teehee.

I ran 10K again earlier today. My last 10k was two years ago when my former boss requested us to join him for his farewell run in Manila. This time I, along with some people in the office, ran in support of ScholaRun, an American Chamber of Commerce charity event. I initially thought it was a mistake registering for 10k seeing that I haven’t trained in a very long time. Up until the gun start, I told myself if I finish the 1st loop and feel that I can’t do another loop, I’m going to stop. But hey, I didn’t. I’m limping a bit now and have to take the stairs one step at a time but overall, I’m feeling okay.

One of the things why I gave up on fun runs/races is having to wake up so early. I picked up R at 4:30 am and I was still really sleepy. But nothing could wake me up faster than realizing I left my phone at the cab! Good thing the light turned red after we were dropped off so I managed to get it back. Whew. So yeah, that was around 4:50 am, and it woke me up for real.

Like all my runs, the first five minutes, despite the warm up, were still the waking-up-my-limbs phase. I was happy when I was still running when I passed the 1st kilometer mark. That’s a first for me, sustaining it like that. Looks promising, Judie, I said to myself.

wp_ss_20140511_0001I made in haste a playlist to keep me moving. Judge away but those songs are legit choices. I set it on shuffle and should last me 50 minutes before it repeats. When I passed the first station handing out bracelet markers, The Ting Tings were happily singing in my ear.

A little past the Home Depot area, or around the 2k block, I felt like walking. But then Beyonce started blaring and when she sings to you, “We run this motha (yeah)…we run this motha…!” you have TO RUN. So I did.

A combination of long run, semi-long walk brought me back to 34th Street which was almost near the Start line. Oooo, I was almost done with 5k. It was a no-brainer after that, Imma go for another loop!

When I crossed the 6th kilometer mark I started questioning my choice. Hahaha! By this time, it’s so hot already. So I alternated walking at shaded areas and running when the sun’s directly hitting my face and arms. I guess it worked plus when Kenny Loggins enthusiastically sings Footloose, you have to look and act alive.

My beat-perfect song has always been Runaway Baby by Bruno Mars (try it, you’ll get moving with each beat), so on the 7th kilometer near Burgos Circle, I was keen on just walking when it played. I really mumbled, “Come on now!” because I knew I had to run to it. I did, albeit slowly.

I wasn’t really “I’m dying” tired but I was walking more than running so I felt happy when I saw this:

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Almost there! Eight minutes later, as the cast of Hairspray led by Motormouth Maybelle was singing in my ear, I crossed the finish line. I also heard my office friends cheering and shouting my name (I was the last in our group who finished, hehe). Yay! Made it and it took me an hour and 28 minutes — which is, if I may brag, 20 minutes early than my previous PRs! Sweeeeet. 🙂

Lootbag, photo ops, and mingling after, I treated myself to this:

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Burger! Burger! Burger!

It’s a really good way to start my Sunday.

I am not going back to joining runs, that I’m sure. I just did this one because it’s for charity and my office is somehow supporting it. However, I’m sure I’m going to keep training and running on my own. I trained for this only a week in advance, and I liked the feeling. There’s something about sweating that makes me feel good. I think it’s the afterglow that I like. Hmm. 🙂

Anyway, I enjoyed my run today.

Judayski’s Best of 2012 (And A Few Unfortunate Events)

The year is about to end so what better way to bookend it than a list of great, wonderful things I experienced this year.  I may have had setbacks which I took really seriously but overall, it’s a very blessed year for yours truly.

best of lifeBest Event: Turning 30.  It’s just a number, yes, but it’s a big one for me.  I threw the  imaginary blueprint I formed in my twenties and created a new one in my head.  It didn’t feel much differently, save for new emotional depths I now have (I swear, hahaha).

Best Work-Related Event: More stability within my team, compounded by the addition of a new member.  I suffered a great loss toward the end of 2011 but five months later, I knew I made the right choice, considering all aspects surrounding  the dynamics of my immediate workplace.  Ah, basta.

Most Wasted Opportunity: I wasn’t able to sustain my social media volunteer work with Visayan Forum Foundation.  I thought it’s going to be breezy and handy but it didn’t come easy.  Maybe it’s the subject matter; maybe I chose an advocacy that while very timely and worthy, isn’t necessarily my cup of tea.  Sayang.  But now I know, and I can cross it off my list.

Best Azkals/Local Football Moments:  (1) Advancing to the semi-finals of the Suzuki Cup  (2) Global FC’s UFL championship game vs. Loyola Meralco Sparks last June — oh, my emotions that night, (3)  winning the Peace Cup.

Terrible Football Moments: (1) Loss to Singapore in the semi-finals stage of Suzuki Cup.  If we were trampled early on, it would have been easier to accept.  But I know everyone did everything they can.  (2) The sexual harassment case against Angel Guirado and Lexton Moy.  Come on, I’m a woman who will fight you to the death if you offend me, but I can also see what’s overreaction when I see one.  Enough said., (3) Global FC’s loss to Stallion FC in the United Football Cup championship.

Best Outcome of Football Fangirling: My football core group.  We dearly call ourselves Fandesals, the meaning of which will be kept to ourselves. 🙂 I love the friendship we formed that transcended football (o, Rach, transcend!).  I love all the games we watched together but the better part of it is our “debriefing” sessions.  I love you all, guys.

best of futbolBest TV show discovery:  The Newsroom.  Consider this: Aaron Sorkin.  News.  I don’t need to say more.  Runners up : Suits, seasons 1 and 2.  The Walking Dead season 3, after a crapfest called season 2.

Best (and Worst!) Physical Activity I Participated In:  Merrell Trail Run on June 2, 2012.  I thought my Corregidor experience was it but no!  For this one, we braved 10 kilometers of extremely muddy, mountainous trail in  Timberland Heights.  For four freakin’ hours.  It’s like a military bootcamp.  Immediately after that, I can barely feel my lower extremities.  When I got home after the event, I slept for 14 hours straight.  But the best part? The experience with my friends.  I will do it again, if the chance presents itself.  Seriously.

Best Out of Town Trip: Bacolod, last June.  Sure, it was for football, but it was also a chance to explore that interesting city.  We had an amazing host who brought us to most of the worthy spots.  The best part was the food trip.  I think I gained the size of a toddler after that trip.  Runner Up : Baguio in March with my Mom.  We stayed inside the Embassy compound.  The fact that Baguio is my second favorite city in the Philippines is why it’s great to begin with.  No ghosts, contrary to rumors, so it’s cool.

Best It’s-Long-Overdue Action:  I had glasses fitted.  I no longer squint just to read all my correspondence!

Best Charity Work Out of Just Using My Big Mouth: Sending five scholars to UP from the proceeds of our The Avengers screening.  I just sold tickets to a movie people wanted to watch anyway.  I’m so proud of my book club, Ex Libris Philippines, for staging this project.  Next year ulit!

Best Achievement:  Successfully going through a six-month book-buying ban.  I’m so proud of myself.  I didn’t die!  However…

Tiny Bibliophile-Related Setback:  I was allowed to buy books on July 1 so between that time and this writing, I amassed 77 books already.  That number excludes the books generously given to me by my former boss, I won on giveaways, and given by friends as gifts.  I don’t know what to say.  This is my eternal love, in case you just met me today.

Worst Losses: Deaths of an uncle and an aunt who loved me dearly.  My familial setup is not your boring and conventional kind so growing up, having people who care for you genuinely is one of the best coping mechanisms. One of my bestfriends also lost her mother and as I said, this kind of loss for us is a different league of its own.  My mentor’s husband, with whom I shared the same birthday and never failed to make me remember it, also passed on.  A consolation in my heart is that I know, they are with my father now in heaven.  They can swap stories up there.

Worst Abandonment Experience: Denoy leaving for a new job over at the other compound — five kilometers away.  I know, abandonment is over the top, but what do you want me to use?  I was left behind?  Okay, that will do.  Seriously, when he left in July, I thought it’s going to be easy.  My friend got a job he actually wanted to do!  But hey, it wasn’t easy.  Imagine losing the most constant, everyday fixture in your life for five years.  It helped that I avoided going to the 2nd floor since he moved.  For a time I was at a loss, even if I know he’s just a phone call away.  It sounds corny, but even if we annoy each other most of the time, he’s like a gum under my shoe that just won’t go away.  I still miss him especially when there’s something — serious or shallow — I want to tell, a guy problem I want his opinion on…and then I’ll realize he’s not there anymore, available by 11:30 a.m.  I have other male friends but they can never replace him.  Anyway, lately, I think I have accepted it fully.

Best Full-Size Aortic Pump Moment: I have moved on from SG.  After a year.  He’s not coming back and even if he does, it’s better this way.  I never regretted the last seven years (especially since not every single day of those seven years was just about him — I had diversions, LOL).  But seriously, it’s fine now.  I know that the lines will always be open, and he constantly proved that to me, so I take comfort in that and I’m ready to face the other direction.  Time to find a new one.  Pwede na. Bigyan nyo na ako ng listahan ng pagpipilian.🙂 I have short-listed names.  Hahaha.

Super Duper Bestest Part of 2012:  I’M STILL ALIVE.  Healthy, employed, loved.  Nothing can beat that.

So, how’s your 2012?

Baby Strides

There are only 11 days left until my first 10K run for 2012 and I honestly feel I am not prepared yet.  Yes, I have been going to the gym for endurance workouts.  I planned on doing it for a few weeks, after which I will run in slow to average speed to re-establish my pace.  Well, it remained a plan, as per usual, and I think I didn’t go past the endurance workout stage.  Things and events happened. 🙂

Run United 1 (RU1) isn’t the first run I registered for this year.  I was supposed to run in the Subic International Marathon last month.  But it being an out of town trip, a few days after my birthday, and with a friend opening his new bar, long story short, we stayed out so late — and got wasted — that we got back to the house we rented in Binictican just in time for the race itself.  Neat, very neat.

Anyway, the RU trilogy run is something I always participate in.  I got used to its registration and race day freebies from Unilab wherein para kang magtatayo ng mini-botica. 🙂  Overall, I have no complaints with any RU run.  For this year, I am happy they did away with gold pins to attach the race bib to the singlet.  I’ve long planned to buy a bib belt since my friend Aldrin lent his to me in the CIHM and now, I don’t have to anymore because it is included in the RU1 race kit!

After this, my friend and I are thinking if we are joining The North Face 100 in Baguio or the interesting let’s-outrun-zombies race in The Running Dead in Alabang.  Both are scheduled on April 21, 2012.  We’re kind of leaning towards the latter because (1) Alabang is nearer than Baguio; you know, travel time, expenses, etc. and (2) running with “zombies”?  That’s something new!  Besides, I am going to Baguio next month and might be staying inside Camp John Hay for 3 days, so maybe I could squeeze in some high-altitude running time.  Maybe!

Anyway, come March 4, I will be at the starting line to run [and walk, who am I kidding] my way to 10K.  I hope to regain my passion for running. Not necessarily running in organized races, but running in general. I know it’s good for me. ~

My 2011 Corregidor Race Experience

I capped my “running” year when I crossed the 10K finish line of the Corregidor International Half-Marathon last December 10.  As I mentioned last month,  this was my last run for 2011 and I could not be more satisfied.

The 10K race was only a side event to the half-marathon. It was both challenging and fulfilling on my part; the race route was how exactly I imagined it would be: it was a challenging combo of uphills, downhills, mud-drenched forest trails, and curved roads.  It was the most exciting race route of my 2-year running career. 😉  When I crossed the finish line, I really felt so happy.  There wasn’t any feeling of discomfort nor stress which only told me I was super fine!

By the way, I intended to accompany this post with more pictures but unfortunately I lost my camera in Rizal Memorial Stadium on the afternoon of December 10, right after I came back to Manila from Corregidor. 😦

Anyway, along with my friends Aldrin and TJ, we traveled to Corregidor on a rainy Friday morning (December 9), because both of them were running 21K, so they didn’t want to travel at the wee hours of December 10, then run the half marathon right after.  We were supposed to stay in Sea Calm Inn, a last-minute addition of Sun Cruises to the accommodation options, even though it was initially disapproved by the race organizers.  I had qualms about it after reading a not-so-good blog post about it in 2010’s CIHM.  By a stroke of good luck, on Wednesday afternoon, I got a message from Lhen of Sun Cruises, asking me if we want to transfer to Corregidor Inn (the “only” hotel on the island) because someone cancelled their reservation.  We gladly took it, of course!

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Still Running

I successfully completed this year’s Runrio / Run United Trilogy. I have put off regular running participations but made sure I bookend this particular event. I finished it in under 2 hours – barely so, I think I clocked in 1 hour and 58 minutes – and I have to admit, it’s mostly walking, not running.

Last November 13, we were stuck in Buendia around 5:00 a.m. because the 32K and 21K categories started already. We got to the starting line almost 9 minutes after the gun start for 10K. The first 5K was still an effort to do 5-2 Galloway until I hit the turning point near Pedro Gil-Roxas. From there, it’s walking and more walking, running only on the very last turn where you can already see the finish line. I took the finisher’s kit, took a picture, ate, and promptly left.

I cannot say that I completely lost interest in running because I didn’t. Maybe I wasn’t as committed to it and the hype has worn itself out on me. For one, races can be very expensive. Second, frankly, the appeal to wake up at an ungodly hour to tire yourself out isn’t as appealing to me anymore. I once told myself, if I want to run 10 kilometers, I could and I would; just on my own time, at my own pace. I totally understand how obsessive this activity can be and long ago, it bit me hard, too. Kudos to those who feel extremely happy running and participating in organized runs. I really think highly of this group of committed people.

Anyway, I wasn’t done yet with running this year. I registered for the Corregidor International Half-Marathon this December 10. But no, I’m so not joining 21K. I joined the 10K side event.  It’s my most expensive run so far and it did hurt my purse as it’s P2,750. Yeah, I know. But it’s in Corregidor and it already includes the ferry fare to and from the island plus the recommended carbo-loading dinner the night before the race. There’s added cost for other race amenities but I won’t bore you with the details – just visit the site. I’m interested in this event because it’s in Corregidor and save for a surprise team-building event in September, I thought it would be my first time there. I’d be glad to come back over and over though. There’s something about old, rundown, history-filled places that fascinates me.

I may have slowed down this year but one thing’s still sure: running will have a soft place in my heart. I will just do it in ways more suitable for my lifestyle. And age.

p.s.  After my post earlier this year, I added four races I participated in.  Sad but true.  They’re the following:

  1. Mizuno Infinity Run 2011  – June 11, 2011 (BGC)
  2. NBA Fit Run – August 7, 2011 (BGC)
  3. Run United 2 (Unilab/Kaspersky) – August 21, 2011 (BGC)
  4. Run United 3 (Unilab) – November 13, 2011 (MOA/Roxas Boulevard)

The big gap between races three and four can actually be explained by my fascination with the Philippine Azkals and the United Football League (UFL) Philippines.  Remind me to tell you all about that phase later. 🙂

16.8k, here I come!

Six races within five months!

One of my bigger goals this year is to run 16.8 kilometers and that will happen in this October’s Adidas King of the Road race.  The event will be a championship race after qualifying legs in other Asian countries namely Thailand, Singapore, Indonesia, and Malaysia.

Early this year, I said that I will start running 10k.  As of this date, I ran in 6 races already. I’m happy with my performance although I know I can still improve, thus the 16.8k goal in four months.

Since February, here are the races I participated in:

  1. Condura Skyway Marathon – February 6, 2011, Skyway/BGC
  2. Run United 1 (Unilab) – March 6, 2011  , BGC
  3. Run Against Trafficking (RAT) Race – March 13, 2011, McKinley Hill
  4. Hyundai Fun Run – April 2, 2011, Roxas Boulevard
  5. The G.O.O.D. Run* – April 3, 2011, BGC
  6. Goldilocks Anniversary Fun Run – May 15, 2011, BGC

*I ran 5k here because I ran 10k the day before.  It was a wise decision for a newbie runner.  It would be too stressful to run 10k in two straight days!

I missed two runs I registered in: Run For Japan (April 17, 2011) because I didn’t hear my alarm clock go off and Run For Integrity (May 29, 2011) because I felt I was coming down with something the night before and it’s that time of the month which almost always makes me anemic (this is an entirely long story that’s too TMI unless you’re my future husband, lol).

Running comes more naturally to me now.  My experience with 5k runs last year had a lot to do with it.  Lately, I decided that it’s high time to make a personal record (PR) each time I run.  I’m still struggling to beat my current 1 hour and 40-45 minute-PR because I lack proper training.  I also wasn’t too serious with losing weight — I’m overweight and face it, it’s hard to run as it is; it becomes harder when you’re lugging excess pounds of flesh and muscles with you!

So now, apart from modifying my eating habits (more on this when significant results are evident!), I’m also following Hal Higdon’s Novice training plan for marathoners.  In a nutshell, it requires me to run a set distance each week of training, with ample rest days, and cross training days.  I identified my cross training activity to be my Zumba class every Wednesday after work.  I feel that the training plan works well for me.

My next run will be on June 11 for Mizuno Infinity Run.  I ran 5k in Mizuno last year so it feels great having to participate – and level up – a year after.  I’m also registered for Takbo.ph’s Runfest on July 24; I was also part of its first runfest last year.  I’m also eyeing Manila International Marathon (June 26), Yamaha Run For Heroes (July 3), and Robinsons Fit & Fun Buddy Run (July 17).  A 5k trail run is also in my race plate this year.

I am determined to make the most out of my training and participation in actual races so I can finish 16.8k alive. 🙂 I have 18 weeks to go!

My next running update would hopefully have more interesting bits and pieces of information.  Vamos a correr!

 

Run, Judie, Run

The race bibs that jumpstarted by running career. Missing was my Sugar Rush Fun Run bib to complete all sixteen!

I ran 16 races in 2010.  That’s 78 kilometers in total.  Running wasn’t in my fitness blueprint last year but I found myself joining each month because my friends were doing it, too.  This is one of those things where blindly going with what’s in and hip paid off well for me.

My first marathon was in February and I didn’t stop and ran almost every month until the second week of December.  Here’s a complete list of the events I participated in:

  1. Century Tuna Superbods Run (5k) – February 21, The Fort
  2. Run United by Unilab (5k) – March 7, The Fort
  3. Mizuno Infinity Run (5k) – April 11, The Fort
  4. Earth Day Run (3k) – April 18, The Fort
  5. San Mig Bay Run (5k) – May 23, MOA
  6. Nature Valley Run (5k) – May 30, The Fort
  7. Robinson’s Buddy Run (5k) – July 11, The Fort
  8. Takbo.ph Anniversary Run (5k) – July 25, The Fort
  9. Rexona Men’s Fun Run (5k) – August 1, MOA
  10. Run 2 Read (5k) – August 15, MOA
  11. CamSur Marathon (5k) – September 28, CWC-CamSur
  12. Avon Run for Breast Cancer (5k) – October 3, MOA
  13. The Pink Run (5k) – October 17, McKinley Hill
  14. Sugar Rush Fun Run (5k) – November 14, MOA
  15. Run United 2 by Unilab (5k) – November 21, The Fort
  16. Run 4 Change (5k) – December 19, McKinley Hill

In the average, my race time was around 43-52 minutes, staying closer to 46 minutes for most of the races.  It took us a long time in CamSur – that’s where I hit almost 52 – because of the number of runners who joined.  It became very hard to get through throngs of people so we just enjoyed the slow run.  It was still fun.  Overall, I consider my race time a respectable one for someone who has not had any training nor experience in running races before I made my first stride in February.

Hindi naman ako happy nito? Hahaha! Taken at the Takbo.ph Anniversary Run in The Fort Photo by Carlo Serrano

It was a year of flexing my muscles and of experiences. I learned how to carbo-load (overdoing it most of the time, hahaha!).  We also met new people, both in races itself and during our Adination training runs in Ayala Triangle Park.  There were also lots of freebies – the most bongga of all was Robinson’s Buddy Run; my lootbag was literally stuffed with groceries which was so worth it for its 350-peso registration fee.

Speaking of fees, that’s my only minor complaint about this running hobby.  It’s a business already.  Registration fees range now from 500 and above, increasing as you aim to run longer distances.  Lucky for races with lots of freebies, but for those with almost none, you only took home a singlet. Parang nagbayad ka para mapagod.  But overall, my experiences were worth it.  It’s hard to mount a successful marathon without money to get you by.

When I look back, I am happy that running has strengthened my stamina.  I still got sick but in the overall, I feel more flexible now.  I may still be slow for a 5k runner but that’s a very huge improvement from feeling like almost dying after running the two-kilometer distance from my office to CCP before I dabbled into this.  Now I can finish 5k, albeit a little tired and so sweaty, but after I slowed down, I am doing okay again.

After 16 races, I felt the need to level up.  This coming February 6, I will be running my first 10-kilometer marathon at the Condura Skyway Marathon!  From today until the race, I need to train for a distance that’s twice of what I used to run.  It’s not going to be easy but I figured, I need to start sometime, for I can’t stay in 5k for another year.  I am giving myself 2 hours at the most to finish 10k.  If I finish it way earlier than that, I will be very happy.  I will keep you posted of my first 10k experience.

Did you run in any 2010 marathon, too?  How was it? If you haven’t tried, I urge you to give it a shot.  It’s fun and healthy at the same time.  Here’s to running in 2011 and beyond!