Tuesday, 26 November 2013

Snow white

Sorry, I'm not exactly the fairest of them all. But this is me last Saturday, preparing to go out for a bike ride. It was forecasted to start snowing sometime between 10am to 11am. Which means if I started my ride early enough, I could have got about a 3 hour ride in before it snows. It took me almost 20 minutes to put 3 layers of clothing on every part of my body - including my hands and feet. My helmet fit because of the layers. Another 30 minutes of trying to adjust the helmet buckle and vents of frustration ensued... Li-Ann was very calm throughout though. 

In the end, I figured out it was not worth it and decided I would ride indoors that day. And a good decision too as the snow came earlier than expected with some howling winds as below. Had I had no gear issues, I would have been stuck in this!

It stopped snowing at about midday but the floors were slippery. I slipped and fell while we were out shopping for groceries, my bum still hurts as I'm typing this. Not much cushion I have in my rear end! 

Overnight, more snowing followed and we woke up to the sights of these!

As if not being able to do my long ride outdoors was bad enough, the roads were all blocked and we could not drive out, so I couldn't get myself to the gym or the pool. I wasn't going to go through another 90 minutes on the bike trainer staring at the wall, so I took a rest day from training.

It was reported that London experienced an average snow fall of 30cm over the weekend with some areas having up to 70cm of snow. Had this happened on a weekday, it would have been declared a holiday... darn!

This is going to be first full winter here and I'm going to have to learn to be flexible and creative with my training regime. It's not going to be easy but I will try. Until then, I'll take a step back and enjoy the white scenery and it's beauty.

Tuesday, 19 November 2013

Few seconds of fame...

I was mentioned in the Malaysian New Straits Times today. I was asked to give a quote by Ironman journalist Emma Bishop but I did not expect my picture to be included. Full text of the article below or can be found in this link. Thank you, Emma for the opportunity! 

IRONMAN is back and everyone here is talking about it. Ironman 70.3 Putrajaya takes place on April 13, 2014 and Ironman Malaysia returns to Langkawi on Sept 27, 2014.

The events are a welcome reintroduction of the Ironman brand here, giving local triathletes the chance to take on the ultimate endurance challenge.

But before that finish line can be crossed, there is a lot of work to be done. Not for the faint-hearted, Ironman is often regarded as the toughest endurance event in the world.

Training for the 3.8km swim, 180km bike and 42.2km run can take the average weekend warrior up to a year. Some athletes may require the full 17 hours allocated to complete the distance while professionals may need less than nine hours.

If you are new to the sport or interested in taking part but find the full Ironman distance overwhelming, then the Ironman 70.3 Putrajaya is a great way to enter the sport.

The half Ironman distance of 1.9km swim, 90km bike and 21.1km run also has a relay team option.

Geoff Meyer, Ironman CEO Asia Pacific, says the relay option gives more people the opportunity to take part in an event where they may not be comfortable in all three disciplines. It’s a great stepping stone into the sport and gives athletes a taste of the Ironman experience and healthy lifestyle that triathlon offers.”

Local athletes who deemed themselves newbies a few years ago are now leading the charge for a surge in participation.

Lim Ee-Van, 37, is ecstatic that Ironman is back. “Triathlons are very much a lifestyle for me and my family and having Malaysia back on the Ironman map means a lot.

“The chance to race alongside the world’s best triathletes and friends and the camaraderie during training goes beyond transition. It is a huge commitment to train for the Ironman but the rush to complete the race and taking part in the event is unlike any other.”

Kevin Siah, 30, is a Malaysian living in Toronto, Canada. He has many races to choose from in North America but has chosen Ironman Malaysia as his race for 2014.

“Langkawi is where my Ironman journey started in 2009. There’s something special about racing on home soil with the Malaysian triathlete community. I know I can pick one of the many North American races to enter but I wouldn’t miss Ironman Malaysia for the world, even if it takes me more than 30 hours to get there!”

Ironman Asia Pacific will be setting up a permanent presence here, working alongside local partner Hivelocity Events to deliver a complete athlete experience that will reflect the international quality Ironman is recognised for while embracing Malaysia’s local culture and communities.

Registration for the two events is now open. Details at www.ironmanmalaysia.com and ironmanputrajaya.com.

Follow IRONMANAsiaPac on Facebook. E-mail your enquiries to ironman@usmevents.com.au

Thursday, 7 November 2013

It's official...

7.58pm... 7.59pm... 8.00pm - CLICK!

The registration for the 2014 Ironman Malaysia opened on Thursday morning 9am - Malaysia time. Though I didn't think that the race will sell out within minutes but as I have already booked my long flight home and local flights to Langkawi, I was not going to take the risk!
I completed my entry under 5 minutes - having a pre existing Active.com account saved me from filling in all my personal details. No confirmation as to who was the first to sign up but I'm pretty sure I'm amongst the first few - as I can't win the race, I might as well try to beat the rest to signing up right? I was literally shaking after my registration was confirmed. And this would be 8th Ironman race - which shows how excited I am to be racing at home with the Malaysian triathlon family! And getting spoiled by mum and dad as my supporters on race day :)

I've been slowly getting back into a routine of training regularly. The recent switchback of daylight savings meant that it gets darker quicker after work. And temperatures are dropping quickly too. Which means most of my workouts now are kept indoors - on the treadmill, on the trainer, in the pool. I'm not too worried as the race is more than 10 months away. The key goal for these few winter months is to keep fit and to work on my speed by including short but high intensity workouts. This will help me get stronger and faster when Ironman training hits full swing beginning of Spring.

For those still pondering on whether to sign up or not, don't take too long. Rumour has it that the participant limit is capped to 1,000 and being the cheapest Ironman race on the calendar - both in terms of entry fee and the local cost of accommodation, transport and food etc., I'm willing to bet that it will sell out soon.

See you at the start line!