Friday, February 18, 2011


With all the fuzz circulating around in the past few days in the local running community about the UNGO anniversary, some of my running friends (just few weeks-old into running) asked me, why is it that the group is called ungo? Is it intended to sound fearsome? or Unique? or Hardcore? All I know is, niether.

To be honest, I think I am not in the authority to answer this question.

Well, to answer my friend's query, this may help:

UNGO:  I think its  cebuano for a mythical human flesh-eating entity similar to aswang in tagalog.

UNGO: It was also what my mother used to call me during my Nintendo addiction days. Since my parents are against computer games, during those days, I usually get home late playing nintendo games at my classmates house. And she (Nanay) usually scolds me : "Na unsa, na man ka, sige ka na lang duwa duwa anang computer, dugay na ka mo pa-uli ! Na UNGO na gyud ka anang Mario ug Battle City"! !  . . . . Then followed by a spanish L word which means milk.

But to really give you an idea on why the group is called UNGO (ug dagan), let me refer you the Ungo Supremo himself, Sir Max Limpag, and here is his answer!

This may also help: UNGO" on the Loose... Friday Night Runners


* my apologies, this is hastily done, because in a few minutes from now, I will be on my way to the UNGO anniversary celebration.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

When is RUNNING a run? JOGGING a jog? or WALKING a walk?

Confused Minimalist, To Run or Walk? 
I considered this morning's scheduled Long Run as one of the most exhausting run I ever had. When I started today's run, I felt as if a heavy metal ball was tied to both my legs. It did not feel right at all. I wanted to quit, but then, SAYANG ang MILES. So I decided to do my target mileage of 18-20km for today. And in order for me to complete this run along with todays lousy feeling, I opted to run the flattest route that I can find, SRP ! ! 

I was already feeling very tired as reached SRP gate, but only had 5km logged. So I decided just to do a lot of walk and jog until I reach my target mileage.

I asked myself, what pace would I do to consider that I'm jogging or walking?? Hmmmm?
So, when is jogging a jog, walking a walk, or running a run?

Is there any universally accepted speed or pace? So that you can tell your buddy; "Hey can we speed  up a bit to (insert desired pace) , we're jogging, I want to run !"

Before I started this inquiry, there is one gadget that I know of that will provide a specific pace for a jog or run or walk. Its usually on my wrist top. My GF. I think most, if not all GF models have this feature.

Try to tinker on your GF's and follow these steps:
From main menu, go to training-training options-alerts-pace alerts and you'll see the following pace range:

slow walk:15:32-12:25
walk:        12:25-9:56
fast walk:  10:33-8:04
slow jog:  8:42-6:50
jog:          7:27-5:36
fast jog:    6:12-4:58
slow run:  5:36-4:20
run:          3:06-4:20
sprint:      2:29-3:06

I dont know if this is universally accepted, but at least now I know that with these pace range, I really Jogged a lot ! ! and ran occasionally in a very short distance. Mao ra akoa makaya.

Uban pang mga nakit-an nako:

Walking (also known as ambulation) is one of the main gaits of locomotion among legged animals, and is typically slower than running and other gaits. Walking is defined by an 'inverted pendulum' gait in which the body vaults over the stiff limb or limbs with each step. This applies regardless of the number of limbs - even arthropods with six, eight or more limbs.

Although walking speeds can vary greatly depending on factors such as height, weight, age, terrain, surface, load, culture, effort, and fitness, the average human walking speed is about 5 kilometres per hour (km/h), or about 3.1 miles per hour (mph). Specific studies have found pedestrian walking speeds ranging from 4.51 km/h to 4.75 km/h for older individuals to 5.32 km/h to 5.43 km/h for younger individuals.

Jogging is a form of trotting or running at a slow or leisurely pace. The main intention is to increase fitness with less stress on the body than from faster running.
The definition of jogging as compared with running is not standard. Dr. George Sheehan, a running expert, is quoted to have said "the difference between a jogger and a runner is an entry blank". Mike Antoniades offers a more specific definition, describing jogging as running slower than 6 mph (10 minute per mile pace, 9.7 km/h, 6.2 min/km).

Running is a means of terrestrial locomotion allowing a human or an animal to move rapidly on foot. It is simply defined in athletics terms as a gait in which at regular points during the running cycle both feet are off the ground. This is in contrast to walking, where one foot is always in contact with the ground, the legs are kept mostly straight and the center of gravity vaults over the legs in an inverted pendulum fashion. A characteristic feature of a running body from the viewpoint of spring-mass mechanics, is that changes in kinetic and potential energy within a stride occur simultaneously, with energy storage accomplished by springy tendons and passive muscle elasticity. The term running can refer to any of a variety of speeds ranging from jogging to sprinting.

Oh well, I learned a lot with these readings. I did this so I will be enlightened, and hopefully it may enlighten others too.

Before I'll end, I was just curious how the word "TAMBOK" is translated to english. So I used Google's online translator and it is translated in English to "BULGE". I tried the word "TABA" since there was no English to Cebuano and vice versa translation. TABA is translated to "FAT".

My alter ego
So what is fat? How would a person know if he is fat? Incidentally, my bookshelf is conveniently within reach as I was typing this. I picked up and browsed though a few of my medschool refernces and found the following.

FATs: 1)  An ester of Fatty acids with glycerol. ( Harper's Biochemistry, 25th Edition, page 160)
            What the Nosebleed ko ! !

           2)Fats consist of a wide group of compounds that are generally soluble in organic solvents and largely insoluble in water. Chemically, fats are generally triesters of glycerol and fatty acids.

Just kidding ! . . . . . .

Actually there is a factual, scientific, medically oriented and easy to use Formula to know that one is "Fat".
This formula is used, not to ridicule other people, but for health risk stratification. It is widely used by physicians, nutritunist and average Joes to lead a healthier life. I think most of us knows about this already. Its known as the Basal Metabolic Index !

Here is the formula:

English BMR Formula
Women: BMR = 655 + ( 4.35 x weight in pounds ) + ( 4.7 x height in inches ) - ( 4.7 x age in years )
Men: BMR = 66 + ( 6.23 x weight in pounds ) + ( 12.7 x height in inches ) - ( 6.8 x age in year )
Metric BMR Formula
Women: BMR = 655 + ( 9.6 x weight in kilos ) + ( 1.8 x height in cm ) - ( 4.7 x age in years )
Men: BMR = 66 + ( 13.7 x weight in kilos ) + ( 5 x height in cm ) - ( 6.8 x age in years )

But if you are too lazy, just like me,  to crunch the numbers, try this online BMI calculator by the U.S. Health & Human services ! 

And if you are lazy enough to click on the link above, try this BMI table here ! !

Caution: this formula has the following limitations.
1) It may overestimate body fat in athletes and others who have a muscular build.
2) It may underestimate body fat in older persons and others who have lost muscle.

My result says: OVERWEIGHT ! !

How about you? How did you fare? ?

My conclusion?  I am an OVERWEIGHT  WALKER/JOGGER who sometimes RUN.

Hopefully, I'm able to help and enlighten everyone who reads this. And please correct me if you notice something that you think is erroneous. Thank you! 

Also, if you find something in this article that is offensive, displeasing, insulting and/or disrespectful to any creed, belief, canon or doctrine, please let me know, and I will gladly censor it. And if an apology is demanded, I will humbly submit to it!

Friday, February 4, 2011

Running with Step-in's: My friend's CRAZY KAI excitement ! ! !


As I was doing my long run this morning, the tracks that I was listening to was interrupted by a text message from my friend, ULTRACOP Max Macua whom I introduced to KAI.
The message goes: "Doc good morning, ni apil ko ug 10k fun run karon buntag(02-05-11) dri Tagbilran, nag barefoot ko (he meant KAI's), naka Sub 1 hour ko, ang naka paet lng kay na putol ang strap sa akoa sandal"

Then I thought, "na buang na jud ni si Max, pag huwebes nag 16km with KAI's(his first run with it), and now a sub 1hour 10k for his second try??"

What a crazy feat !

So I replied to his SMS: "Unya naka daug ka?"
Max: "Wa oi, pero kadaug unta ko kung nag sapatos pa ko, hehehe."
Me: " Cge lang kay murag sikat man ka sa imong KAI's."
Max: " Mao lagi, na gubot sila ngano kunong nag STEP-IN ko, bwahahaha"

I broke into  laughter when I read his last sms. Step-in !

And then it hit me! STEP-IN's indeed. The word reminds me of my childhood when my mother asks me to clean her sandals, and the exact word she was using were: STEP-IN.

Ultracop Max (bib # 236, 1st from right)


For those who plans to do the same act,  pls dont try this at home, or proceed with caution, aron di ma injured. 

Officer Max was a track and field varsity  of U.V. during his college days, concentrating with 200-meter sprint and 400meter hurdles. Aside from several months of training before becoming a PNP officer, and the usual weekend fun runs he has finished, he already had 2 marathons( his first in 04:16:42, 34th Milo Marathon Manila Elims & his 2nd, Cebu Marathon 01-09-11) and a 50k ultra under his belt, all three events done within 6 months.

By the way, he told me that one of his most memorable moment  during the last 50k ultra was when somebody, a runner wearing an UNGO Ultra shirt, (he described as an "older guy"), who passed him and chanted: "EAT MY DUST!"
All he had was praises for this "older guy" as he was not able to keep up with Mr. Eat my Dust ! I told him that I know who Mister Eat my Dust is and I know for a fact that he really is fast. Faster than a JOGGER/WALKER  like me ! hehehehe.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

KAI''s : My attempt into the minimalist running concept.

With all these rave into barefoot and minimalist running, I kinda wonder if, as an injury prone runner, it will benefit me? I have always been critical and skeptic to novel ideas, what more to running "barefoot"  or with the least protection to our feet. An idea so contradictory to the ones ingrained during our childhood with regards to protecting our feet. 
Since our feet don't come with an Owner's Manual or an F.A.Q. leaflet, experience is the best and only real-life guidebook on how to use our feet.
So, to answer my own query if minimalist running will benefit me, there's only one way to know but to give it a shot (fingers crossed).
I have been reading a lot regarding this new (actually, its just a re-make, re-introduction of an ancient school-of-thought) way of running. And decided to go hunting for a shoe that is nearest to the minimalist dogma and also has "minimalist" damage to my pocket, since this is still an experiment. And I don't want to spend a lot then get injured in the process. 

So enter Cebu's very own KAI sandals ! ! 
Just got my pair two days ago and tried it this morning, and here's my first few hundred meters of minimalist experience. 
Made three laps (approx 300m) around friendship village after this morning's Long run. 
During the 1st few meters, I noticed that approx 1 inch of both my heels gets off the sandals' heel part, towards the medial aspect. So I re-adjusted the straps, a little tighter, but same thing happens.
I thought maybe Master Jacob cut my pair a little smaller.
But as I was observing Bjorn yesterday, who was walking and running in the mall with his KAI's the whole afternoon, his feet lands right inside the sandals. Every time, all the time.
So after a hundred meters, I tried a slow jog, @ 7:50-8:00/km. And then as if like magic, my heels doesn't get off the sandals any more. Not even a millimeter off! My feet lands right within the KAI's. Every time, all the time.
I tried walking again and then my heels readily gets off even on the first few steps walking.
Again I increased my pace to 6:30/km in the next few hundred meters and the magic is back again. My feet lands right within it (KAI's). I repeated the run-walk-run-walk experiment a few more times and the same thing happens. Also, I observed that I land midfoot more with these magic sandals.
Does anyone have the same experience ? or its just me who has weird feet.
I still need to do some more experimentation on this.
My conclusion:
1) KAI's for me, are not for walking, they're for running, MIDFOOT ! (which is good)
plano pa naman unta nako nga himuon sad sya ug beach sandal. Pang Summer ! hehehe
2)I think kids walk and run midfoot . . . I think.

Made adjustments as published in huaracherod's blog, and it readily solved the problem. I made some adjustment since I already cut my KAI's straps as described in the original tying technique. I omitted steps 5,6 & 7, then moved the buckle to the lateral aspect of my foot.

1) Original Tying technique suggested by the creators of KAI sandals.

2) Tying technique by Huaracherod (buckle on the medial side).

3) My improvised Tying technique, omitting steps 5.6.& 7 of huaracherod's.
(buckle on the lateral side)

Sunday, April 18, 2010

The Great Lapu Lapu run ! ! A case of "I bit off more than I could chew !". Memoirs of an Over-Eager Runner !

Days before the 2nd  GLLR, I already planned  to run it at my comfortable race pace, at 6:30/km, since it is part of my preparation for my first full marathon this coming 4th of July in Manila. At this pace, I will probably finish it at 2:15:00.

The night before the race, I told myself to run comfortable the next day, with a goal in mind to finish between 2:18:00 and 2:20:00. Just a few minutes shy of my previous 21k PR  of 2:22:16.

As I started my 2nd half-mary, I was able to cross the magnetic field at the start line almost 2 minutes after gun time due to the large volume of participants and only a narrow exit for the runners from the holding pen. I started cold and slow, at 7:00/km, because, as was announced  by the organizers a  few minutes before gun time, the customary pre-race warm up was cancelled due to time constraint.
Few minutes later, at the 3rd km, as I was calmly treading at my planned pace of 6:30/km, Dr. Kenneth Casquejo, the 2:00:00-2:15:00 PACER, passed me, along with familiar faces pacing with him.

The group was about 10 to 15 runners strong. As they streaked pass me, I said to myself  to just stick to the plan. They were a good 20-30 meters ahead of me from km 3 to km 7. At this stretch, I was able to have a short chit-chat with my PHYSICAL DIAGNOSIS mentor/International Marathoner, Dr. John Cliffrod Aranas.

All that time, I was still comfortable at 6:15/km to 6:20/km, and the group was still at the same gap in front of me.Well I thought, why not pace with them? At 6:00/km? And I answered myself, Why not?
So pace with the 2:00:00 group I did. Roughly 1km before the Marcelo Fernan bridge, I picked up my pace to 6:05/km, and I was just a few feet behind them. As we started to ascend on the bridge, the group slowed down to 6:50-7:20/km. I already contemplated to do the uphill part at 6:20-6:40. So I passed them midway through the uphill because a 7:00/km pace feels so unnaturally slow for me.
On the descend, I was running at 5:25-5:45 which is my usual speed on a downhill course. However the group has picked up their pace, and they passed me again midway though the downhill. So I tried to maintain a close gap with them. And as I glanced on my GF, I was surprised that it read 4:35/km ! ! and it was telling me to slow down. I surmised, they were probably at 4:10/km on the downhill. That was way too fast for me, And I few hundred meters before  the 1st U-turn, we were at 5:40/km ! WHEW ! ! The Pacers were really serious at their target finish of 2:00:00. Dead serious. As we were under the bridge, the group did not stop on the water station. Fortunately, I brought my  hydration belt with me. At this stage, I was pacing steadily with the group at 6:00/km-6:05/km. I'm still good, still pacing well. Then I exclaimed loudly in cebuano, " Ma encouraged man sad ta mo sunod sa pacer kay sexy ug mga lubot!" Doc Ken and the rest of the runners in front of me, who all happened to be wearing compression running tights managed to belch out a few laughter ! !

Devoured my energy gel on the second U-turn as we were going uphill again. I also noticed that the group has thinned out to fewer than ten runners. As we started to climb again, I changed my plan to run the uphill at my usual pace of  6:20-6:40/km and to wait for the group's descend.
Instead I decided to pace with the group all throughout the bridge. However, I found the pace we were at to be more tasking, as I have mentioned, unnaturally slow for me. We were at 7:20-7:50/km.

Mr. Sun was already high up and we were starting to feel the heat of an early Lapu-Lapu city summer morning.

BREATHE-TAKING ! ! Literally !
Halfway uphill, we passed by the 10km marker, still at 7:00-7:30/km, still unnaturally slow for me; . . . and then suddenly, that was when I started to feel a little discomfort on my right ribs! ! Uh-oh . . .  an early sign of a SIDE-STITCH ! ! Still, I continued to pace with the group. I inhaled and exhaled forcefully several times when we were at the top, relatively flat, level part of the bridge, hoping to exorcise the discomfort. And then as suddenly as the group slowed down uphill, our pacer readily accelerated on the descend to a literally "breathe-taking"  4:40/km ! ! Another whew ! !

As our feet LANDED on MACTAN, we were at 5:55/km. At this point, the discomfort on my ribs was replaced by a mild to moderate piercing pain each time I exhale! !  Now a full blown side stitch ! ! Though I was nursing painful exhalations, amazingly, right on time,  my SECOND WIND kicked in, which enabled me to keep up with the group. We were almost at the 3rd U-turn, when I noticed that our group was trailing just a few meters from Dr. Porfie Amboang. That was when I concluded that I bit off more than I could chew, that I really was running too fast for my own good. I wasn't expecting that I will be this close to Doc Porfie in a race. Not even in my wildest dreams. He runs 5:50-6:00/km LSD's. Mine at 7:00-7:20/km. By the way, Doc Porfie finished at 1:55 hours! Not bad ! !

On a water station at kilometer 12, our pacer took a water and walk break. It was a welcome respite for my ailing intercostals. A few seconds later, we were back running again. It was at this point that I noticed, that each time our pacer took a water break, they readily run back to approximately 5:40-5:50/km. And I thought, AND PRAYED, that  they will tend to slow down a little bit as we were nearing the finish. Well, I was wrong, dead wrong ! They were like those 4DR-5 diesel engines, as they traveled longer, they ran faster, and faster ! no signs of letting up.

After we crossed the corner going to Marcelo Fernan bridge, my side stitch is now on both sides, and they were really ouch ! We were still at 5:500 to 6:00km. It was at this point that I decided to break away from my pace group and decided to slow down a bit to 6:20/km. Hoping and wishing the pain will go away at this pace. Again I was wrong. It did not.
I paced slower still, now at 6:40/km and the pain was now bearable. So I decided to stay on this pace for a few minutes. I noticed that my pace group is now about a hundred meters ahead, and already fewer than six runners. I started to talk to myself to: "go on, continue, believe and survive. You cannot DNF this one." Then told myself, DONT LOOSE THOSE BALLOONS ! ! Those balloons, prominently tied on the pacers' singlets to clearly identify them. If I keep those balloons in sight 'till the end, I will just be a few seconds away from 2:00:00 hours. Again, I was wrong. The "2nd to the last" time that I saw those two white balloons was past km 13, and they were a good 500meters away already.

Kilometer 15, as I was near the airport runway, I was on a walk-jog-walk-jog mode at 6:10/km-10:20/km. Along these stretch, I was ROADKILL to a lot of runners. Also, at this stretch, I was running with another mentor/Pulmonologist/ International Marathoner, Dr. Albert Santos.
Km 15 to km 17 was one of the longest 2 kilometers I've experienced so far.

More Familiar faces, familiar OBJECTS ! !
Walk-jog-walk-jog was my MODE until km 17.

Halfway through km 18, side stitch gone, I started to pick up the pace, now back to a steady 6:20/km. And as I turned right towards Maribago, I encountered for the last time, those two familiar white balloons and under them, the 2:00:00 pacers, still running strong ! ! !
On these last 2km stretch of the race, I also encountered a few of familiar and prominent local figures of this sport.
To mention a few, there's Atty. Haide "FOODIE" Acuna; Dr. Raymund "REEL RUNNER" Bontol on the sidelines cheering the lady who paced with me from start to finish, miss Aeda Mae Siao.(I bet, 'twas another sub 2:00:00 for REEL.) A few familiar running politicians, and if I'm not mistaken, I saw the Bull Runner, or maybe not. I was dehydrated and hypoglycemic already. I took my last walk break midway through the 19th km. Did a lot of deep breaths as I prepared for the final stretch. Then I started running again, this time, at 6:00/km.
As I turned right going to the Lapu-Lapu shrine, last 500meters or so, I picked up the pace again and Im now  running at 5:50/km ! !  Yes, I did it ! Unofficial GF time finish: 2:18:31. Shaved off five mins from my previous PR ! ! Yehey! !

Friends and familiar faces that I met during this race ! !
Dr. Humility Igana, ran 21km and her sister Hope who ran 5km with my wify Tine.
Dr. Cecillie Milan, ran 21km who has to report on 24-hrs duty after this race at 9am.
Dr, Harem Dieparine
Dr. Glen Cang
Dr. Eleanor Casquejo
Dr. Rosan Trani, passed me at km 14, and the next time I saw her was at the Lapu2x shrine.
Dr.Kathrina Perez
Kirk Boying Milan, who stayed with Dr. Kenneth almost throughout the race. Broke pace at 19th Km. Not bad for his 1st half-mary. Maybe sub 2 next time 'ying.
Max Limpag of Sunstar
Jermine Germino of RUNNR, ACC, good friend and college classmate
Eric Agaton of NIKE BTC
Dr. Thyam Fookson
Twinkle Ignacio

My personal conclusion for this race:
1) I'm not yet ready for a Sub 2hr half-mary.
2) I need to practice more. Rack up more mileage, do longer tempo runs!
3) More importantly ! ! Stick to my original pre-race plan. Not to change midway thtough the race.
4) Leave my ego back home ! !

2nd GLLR REVIEW: :My reviews are only Limited to 21km run.

1) race kit distribution:  kit distribution was smooth, some hitches due to late registrants. But was generally fine.

2) Race route:  TWO THUMBS UP ! ! generally flat, But the Marcelo Fernan bridge made the exclamation  !! It separated the boys from the MEN ! ! and the girls from the WOMEN. (para dili chauvinist ang dating) hehehe

3) Runners' Safety: Was generally safe. albeit as usual, jeepney n taxi drivers were endangering some of the runners. Well, we cant make everybody to appreciate our passion in running, specially if it hinders their source of income ! They just consider us as a nuisance.
Had more than enough marshals.

4) Water stations:  More then enough water all throughout until the finish line, though I feel they were placed abit farther specially right after the bridge. I heard one runner who was with the 2:00:00 pacer saying: "uhaw na". Gatorade, more than what everyone needed ! ! Thanks a LOT !

5) Post race Hydration and food: Great !!....... taas lang ang pila, because there was only one station to claim post race meals ! !

6) PARKING: everyone who brought vehicles wid them had a hard time looking for a parking space.

7) Started very late. not as what was announced. Maybe there were some pre-race hitches that the organizers need to iron out. Who knows ! !

8) PACERS: they were just great ! ! Dead serious! makes you land on your target time. Sadly, I picked the wrong pace to run ! ! over-eager me.

9) Portalets: I don't know if there were available. But did not notice any.


In my limited experience  in foot races, I'll give it an 8/10, compared to 9/10 on my 1st 21k race last January @ the CCM
CONGRATULATIONS AND DAGHANG SALAMAT  to the organizers of the 2nd GREAT LAPU LAPU RUN ! for giving us a very good event. It was GREAT indeed, and you guys just made Datu LAPU-LAPU proud ! !

Heads up to future race organizers: Parking lot really matters, specially if layo ang event setting.

Medals for the 21km finishers wud have been very nice ! ! ! but not really necessary ! !

Until our next footrace ! !

Friday, April 16, 2010

Yes to the 1st Edition of RUNNER's WORLD PHILIPPINES !

    I bought my copy of MH Phil april last tuesday, and was shocked and elated ! !  Reason being??
When I flipped over the magazine, I saw the first ever edition of RW Phil. Ho-ray ! ! !
I hurriedly scanned though the pages of RW, but my elation was gradually replaced by disappointment. Not because of poor workmanship of the whole magazine, but because most of the articles in it were all too familiar. It was like a deja vu. As I continued reading through, it struck me head on. I have already encountered several of the articles on RW website. It made me come to a conclusion that I was paying extra for something that I already read for free. Sad.

    We'll, so much for my elation.
I just hope, the next issue of RW phil, will have more fresher articles, not just rehashed/recycled from RW's website, and will feature more articles suited for filipino runners from around the country, not just in the greater Manila area.

Will continue to read on RW and I know, it morph into a better publication.