Sunday, January 27, 2008

Adidas Seeding Shoes: Test Run

Thanks to pmtey, I got this message to obtain Adidas seeding shoes for running bloggers. We'll have to test run for 30 days, and write an unprejudiced report on them. And yes, you do get to own it as well.

Here's the message:
Hello Guys ,

I have some good news for runners who blogs or having their own webpage.

adidas had brought in some very high performance technical running shoes
to be given away to runners to wear-test them & given us their very
frank & unprejudiced opinion about the shoes after 30 days of usage.
The sizes are limited and I have them in size UK 5.5 , 7.5 , 8.5 & 10.5.

Those wishing to possess these shoes will have to comply with the
following terms & condition :

1 ) Come to the adidas office to fit the shoes.
2 ) Undertake to give comment about the shoes after 30 days of usage.
3 ) Must be a blogger or has his/her own website.

If you are interested pls make an appointment with me or my partners
Mori Hiroshi as detailed below :

Office address:
adidas Malaysia Sdn Bhd
Block B , Level 4,
Plaza Damansara
45 Media Setia 1
Bukit Damanasara
Kuala Lumpur

Tel Office : 03 - 20804843 / 20804876

Contact Person ( 1 )
Krishnan Karuppan
Mobile : 012 - 3503668
E-Mail : krishnan.karuppan

Contact Person ( 2 )
Mori Hiroshi
E-mail :

This offer expires on 22nd February 2008

Best Regards
Krishnan Karuppan
Head of Running
adidas Malaysia

So, I head to their office in Bukit Damansara to checkout. And this is what I got: Adidas Adistar 6th edition.

The meeting with Mr Krishnan was pretty informative. Here's a few things I found out. I am a flat footer, and the current Adidas shoes I am using are basic. They aren't even meant for my feet.

And here's what I found out about the Adidas Adistar:

1) At the sole of the shoe is a round piece of purple rubber which absorbs every step you take. Now to put into perspective, he showed me 2 rubber balls. One green, the other purple. The green one bounced when hitting the ground. The purple ball did not. It sort of stuck to the ground where it fell. This material in the purple ball is the same used for the cushioning. The logic is, every time your whole feet hits the ground, you want your feet to stay a bit longer on the ground, absorbing more of the shock of the landing. This reminds me of taking a golf ball and letting them bounced of dirt, and on the tarmac as a comparison. It won't bounce on dirt, but definitely will bounce on tarmac.

2) If you look at the soles of the shoe, they had made a cut at the outer side heel of the shoe. The whole sole is not one piece, but two. This part is prone to wear and tear. I remember my last pair was so bad, almost half of the piece was gone. The rationale of this design is to minimize the damage done to the soles.

3) There's no stitches under the cover of the shoe. So less abrasion to your feet.

4) There's a piece of gray piece of rubber at the front part of the sole. It's meant to propel your motion once you lift your feet of the ground.

5) Under the sole, pointing inwards, is a piece of hard material, labelled QS. This is suppose to help you when taking off from the ground.

6) There's also the common support arch. My current running shoes is devoid of this. So, I'll need to get use to this.

7) The shoe is design to sort of package your feet. I can attest to this. Both my previous Adidas were hugging my feet during running. The feeling is like the shoes are your feet.

Alright, this is a lot of technology build into a shoe. No wonder it costs so much. I am just used to buying shoes, which feels good, and not an idea on what they build into them. The reason I like Adidas was the cushioning. That's it.

But with all that, let the run tell the story. Even though it's a high performance shoe, I'll put some honest opinions on how it feels to run in them.

Looks great, notice the small holes in front. They are meant to cool the shoes.
And also notice the gray material as well.

Some arch support, but not enough according to Mr Krishnan.

This reminds me of Asics. Now you can really see the soles are actually 2 part.

And here is my first Adidas shoes. The soles eaten up a lot. But...this is the pair I ran all my ultras. And it's basic.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Guaranteed Slimming Program, and it's not Marie France

I've always wondered, is it necessary to join a slimming program? Open the papers and you see slimming ads all over the place. Women, are the target market, but men don't escape their radar either.

These slimming programs can go up to thousands. And you wonder, who pays to get slim? But if you think again, whether there's a market for slimming programs, there definitely is. If not, these business wouldn't have last long.

Now, personally, I think they are a waste of money. Why pay someone else to help you with personal weight problems?
The solution is pretty simple. Eat healthy, and do consistent exercise. Better still, go run. I personally guarantee that if you run 50km weekly, you'll lose weight.

Since I am into running, I'll tell my side of story. After graduating, and working for 2 years in a local company, I've added up some weight. My constant eat, work in front of PC, go home, and sleep, contributed to this malice.

Anyway at that time, I was a runner, although not into distance longer than a few km. Heck, I didn't even measure the distance I ran. It's just a weekly jog at the park. And I think I was doing OK. 10km was too far. I don't even know how far a marathon is.

Apparently, this isn't enough. And soon, I found my waistline abit bulging. It was weird, because, I used to eat the same amount of food, and do the same exercise, and didn't get this fat. I was suspecting, with age catching up, there's a change in the bio mechanics of the body. Somehow, along with the catching up of age, some men do get a bit fat, if they just eat, and did less exercise. I confirmed this with a friend, who got a brother who just bulged after marriage. However, there's some men, who will maintained a thin frame for the rest of their lives. This leads us to genetics. I do believe, if I kept a sedentary lifestyle, I'll be fat ( just like my dad ). So, somehow my genes are like this. But for those lucky ones whose genes makes sure they are thin regardless of anything, well, lucky them.

Before I started running, I have been swimming a lot. I would log a few kms in the pool weekly. It's good exercise, but if you are banking on getting thin swimming, I'll suggest not. You can't really get thin swimmming.

So after I picked up running, I have now got a smaller waistline. Even my pants started to drop off. If you go to any running events, majority are in the thin group. They have almost no fat on their bodies. Only strong hard bodies.

Back to the slimming ads. In a sense, what I could deduce is, somehow some of us has forgotten how is it to use our own bodies, to the point that, we need others to tell us how to use them. Look all around us. We've got most of our housework, transportation, and food easily provided by machines and systems.

Walking is now not commmon, but driving is. Hand washing is now considered hard on your hands. Sweeping the floor is easier using vacuum. And shaking off your tummy is now even easier using some belt. And getting thin is advertised as easy as popping some pills. Worst still, there's the KFC ad showing a modern mum, bringing home fast food, and that makes their children happy.

Lets put is this way, if we compare how humans live a few decades back compared to now, the old generation will laugh at how stupidly dependable we are. People at those times, used to walk for miles just to reach some place. And their houses lack washing machines, maids, and cars. But they still live comfortably with less.

Those slimming ads will always be there, for those who believe that paying someone or something, to do the job, will help them, rather than sweating out.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Race Day: Great Eastern Pacesetters GE30k 2008

I don't have have any target except run faster. However, I realized that I will have to start late to do dawn prayers, which translates to a later 10 minutes start. I was really the last to go. So I've got lots of catch up to do. So, I tuned in the legs for a faster pace, and soon found myself among the back pack runners.

Timing was at 57 minutes when reaching the traffic lights, ending the double hill section, which made me wonder if I was too slow. Then, the traffic got worse by the release of 10km runners. I've got to side step most of them to go ahead.

When reaching the mosque, I realized my left knee was in some pain. So, it kind of affected the run, but I kept on moving on. Pain is really something you got to accept. It's all in the mind.

Soon, I reached the Petronas Station, but found out that we had to go another 1km loop. I thought it was just a touch and go spot. Well, on the way back from the loop, they handed out power gels. These stuff never taste nice, but luckily there's water a few metres ahead.

I realized with the knee pain, I'll have to slow down abit, and just keep on a normal pace.

In the end, based on my timing, it's 2:46:03 (official placing is 163 and timing will be plus 10 min). So to summarize, not much improvement in timing, but that's ok.

The post event is probably the best organized in Malaysia. They had lots of food, and drinks, and that's all matters to runners.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

David Goggins: Not your usual runner

This guy is totally awesome.

His first triathlon? Ultraman. Everyone knows what is an ironman. Ultraman is just more distance (10 km swim, 421 km cycle, and 84km run).

And he also won 3rd placing in Badwater 2007.

You can listen to an interview from him here:
Listen to podcast

Monday, January 7, 2008

Recollecting thoughts on ultras

Haza commented:
I only have two questions:
(1) How do you do it? For me 42km is long enough, I cant imagine going a step further. What makes you keep at it until three-digit km? What were you thinking of all those hours? What occupied your mind?
(2) A silly one. Weren't you scared running alone on deserted roads in the early morning hours and midnight? Hantu is one thing, what about thugs?

I know there are female ultra runners in this country. I wonder how and where and when they train. I mean, safety issue and all.

(I wrote this as a post, because it made me reflect deeply rather than ignore what I have went through. Thanks Haza. It's kind of long anyway.)

hi haza,

I'll tell you something regarding myself. I love to do very very hard things. I don't like simple challenges. My philosophy in life would be, do the hardest stuff you can do. Solve the hardest problem. I guess, this is what motivates men to climb Everest and swim across seas.

But I think I am not so crazy like some other crazier fellows. I am just ordinary guy running long distance. If you think you are crazy, there's other doing more crazier stuff. There's Hardrock 100 miles with a total elevation 10,000 metres climb (note higher than everest from sea level). And there's badwater 135 miles as well.

What were I thinking? Depends on the mood of the hour. Sometimes, is this worth it? Why would I be running like this, if i could just sit at home and do some hacking. I am a programmer by profession, so i like hacking and writing codes. Sometimes, I think, could I do 200km? 260km? I try to visualize how far it would take. If you can conceptualize the distance and the path to be taken, you might be more confident in tackling it. But usually, I throw out any thoughts that says this is stupid. Or go back and rest. In my mind, its just "make the distance". Don't think this is crazy. Whatever distance, be it 100km or 140km, it's just a darn distance. You want to think it's normal. Although, in reality you are doing something, you know it's either the stupidest thing, or the most fulfilling challenge.

The other thing I always think is food. If only i got a support crew where I could get some nice nourishment instead of powerbars. Or hot coffee instead of cold water from streams. Not to mention no electrolytes. This is my mistake. I'll bring some salt next time.

On the scary part, yes, it's pretty scary. I am not joking. Running in the dark is one thing. Running in the dark, in the jungle, midnight is a whole lot of difference. In total, I ran 3 ultras cutting through Hills of Genting Peres covering the 84km back to back. Imagine this, after running up to Genting Peres, it's 1am. Not a soul is around this place. Totally dark. The only light you have is your small LED torchlight. Right and left, are tall thick bushes and trees. It's cold, and damp. But your legs needs rest, and there's a cement drain 200 metres further where you can sit down and rest awhile. You run a bit downhill, and soon you find it. But sitting down and rest, makes you think, is anyone watching me from the back? What if I encountered some paranormal sightings. And shit, you are all alone. Tired, and have another 40km to run. But you got no choice. After resting 10 minutes, you stand up again on your stiff legs. And started running again. Mechanical at first, because at this point, you have ran 100km. Your legs are pretty much worn off. Soon, your run turn out into a slow jog, and you feel relieved because you can run, although it's darn slow. It's sometimes so embarrassingly slow that you think walking is the same speed as running. But you run nevertheless, in hope that some miracle will make you run faster a bit.

Once in awhile some bats will swoop right in front, and my whole body would just stand up. Sort of like jerking, because of shock of not knowing what the heck went by. But after some pretty slow computation, I deciphered it's just a mammalian bat. And kept on running afterwards.

Running here is so lonely, that in one hour, there's only 1 or 2 cars passing by. Oddly, I try to think the cars passing by, as sort of encouragement and attachment, to counter the loneliness feeling. In other words, I need cars to feel not lonely.

And there's so many times running in the wee hours of morning, I thought I see shadows of objects, that turned out not what it was actually. I had thought there's a car below the street lamp, but when i came nearer, it's just some bushes. So, I guess, no point trying to figure out what I am seeing. As long as I could see the road in front and keep on moving, that's fine.

You know what is the most relieving part of this journey. Getting out of the forest after Genting Peres, and reaching the foothills. It's amazing to think, I had reached this area yesterday at 10 am, and here I am 3am the next day. And still running.

Thugs? I haven't encountered yet. Hopefully not...I don't think that even thugs would come into this part of the path.

Training for ultras is pretty simple. Just up your mileage. Run lots of hills. Do lots of long distance run. B e self sufficient if you run alone. You'll get used to it. But for female runners, it's a safety issue. So, the best thing is to run in an organized ultra event. Like MR 25 12 hours run.

What I wrote can't be substituted for the real experience. If anyone dares, try running 84km back to back from Gabai to Kuala Klawang. Then, you'll fully know what it feels like.

Saturday, January 5, 2008

Bukit Aman 30k

How do you possibly find 30k route in KL? The answer is one loop of double hill (10k), then another loop to Petronas in Sri Hartamas.

Raymond actually started earlier with Siok Bee, and Ray Ng. I didn't opt to start so early. I can't possibly miss my beauty sleep. Believe it or not, the first challenge is getting outta bed. Running is not so much hardship after you got the momentum going on.

As I head for the double hills, I am still figuring why it's called double hill. Yeah, lots of hills, but I couldn't sense which are the prominent so called double part. As I trudged along, I met Shazly, doing his last 5k of 30k. Damn, I must be very late runner. My timing on double hill was 52 minutes.

Going back another 20k loop is pretty cheerful at this part. At least no more hills. When I reached Petronas, I was surprised to find Ngae there. He mentioned he had registered 82km sundown ultramarathon, but has some events that clashed. So, if any of you wanted to use his number, let him know. Haza was there as well, in her usual running outfit.

I also met PM1 Ronnie See. We ran like almost the 10km back. All I can say, he's pretty fast.
I didn't really want to run fast at this moment as I've got the right heart rate, and right pace where I could just cruise on. However, I still want to do less than 3 hours on this course.

In the end, my timing was 2:45:34. I think I could push faster in the real race. Perhaps 2:30?

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

You Know Your an Ultra Runner If...

Trust me...only runners will understand reading this. And only those who have attempted ultras will fully get it. I had a blast reading all those..:)

Taken from

  1. Your wife tries to introduce you to your three children and you reply "Three?"

  2. You spend more time in the drug section than the food section of the local market.

  3. You wonder why they don't make all running socks a dusty brown color.

  4. You have more dirt on your shoes than in your garden.

  5. You think that flagel and ibutrophin belong on the breakfast table.

  6. You get more phone calls at 5:00 AM than at 5:00 PM.

  7. You don't recognize your friends with their clothes on.

  8. You have more buckles than belts.

  9. You postpone your wedding because it will interfere with your training.

  10. You keep mistaking your boss for Norm Klein.

  11. 6am is sleeping in.

  12. Your feet look better without toenails.

  13. Your idea of a fun date is a 30-mile training run.

  14. You're tempted to look for a bush when there's a long line for the public restroom.

  15. You don't think twice about eating food you've picked up off the floor.

  16. You can expound on the virtues of eating salt.

  17. You develop an unnatural fear of mountain lions.

  18. When you wake up without the alarm at 4AM, pop out of bed and think "lets hit the trails".

  19. When you can recite the protein grams by heart of each energy bar.

  20. You don't even LOOK for the Porto-sans anymore.

  21. Your ideal way to celebrate your birthday is to run at least your age in miles with some fellow crazies.

  22. Your ideal way to have fun is to run as far as you can afford to with some fellow crazies.

  23. You know the location of every 7-11, public restroom, and water fountain within a 25-mile radius of your house.

  24. You run marathons for speed work.

  25. You have more fanny packs and water bottles and flashlights than Imelda Marcos has shoes.

  26. You visit a national park with your family and notice a thirty-mile trail connecting where you are with the place your family wants to visit next, which is a 100-mile drive away, and you think "Hmmmm".

  27. Someone asks you how long your training run is going to be and you answer "seven or eight ... hours".

  28. People at work think you're in a whole lot better shape than you think you are.

  29. You actually are in a whole lot better shape than you think you are.

  30. Your weekend runs are limited by how much time you have, not by how far you can run.

  31. You always have at least one black toenail.

  32. You buy economy-sized jars of Vaseline on a regular basis.

  33. You tried hashing, but felt the trails were too short and easy.

  34. You think of pavement as a necessary evil that connects trails.

  35. You rotate your running shoes more often than you rotate your tires.

  36. Your friends recognize your better dressed in shorts than in long pants.

  37. You really envied Tom Hanks' long run as Forest Gump.

  38. You carry money around in a zip lock bag because store clerks complained that your money's usually too sweaty.

  39. Any time a plain old runner talks about her aches and pains, you can sympathize because you've already had that at least once.

  40. You put more miles on your feet than on your rental car over the weekend.

  41. You don't need to paint your toenails; they're already different colors.

  42. You start planning the family vacation around races, and vice-versa.

  43. When you start considering your next vacation location on the merits of its ultras only.

  44. You spend you entire paycheck on running gear, ultrabars, and entry fees.

  45. You miss a work deadline cause you just had to have that "one more minute" on-line writing to the list.

  46. You become a quasi-expert on different detergents so as to not "hurt" your tee shirts.

  47. You leave work early to hit the trails.

  48. You wear t-shirts based on if you've had good work outs when you've worn them before.

  49. Have a trail shoe collection that would make Imelda Marcos envious.

  50. You walk up the stairs and run down them.

  51. Peeing in the toilet seems unnatural.

  52. You start wearing running clothes to work so you're prepared for afterwards.

  53. Running trail is better then sex. (even if you don't get any)

  54. Vaseline isn't just for fun anymore.

  55. When the start of a marathon feels like a 5K and you're wondering "Why is everyone in such a rush? Where the ##@@**!! is the fire?"

  56. As an infant you were dropped on your head.

  57. Nobody recognizes your power T's. Met a guy at the market the other day who was wearing an AR50 T. So was I. I gave him a hearty, "Ta-da." He said, "Oh yeah, I tell people we were all acquitted and the charges were dropped."

  58. You sign up for a 10K and
    • you strap on your fanny pack because you never know where the aid stations are.
    • you bring your own drinks.
    • you bring potatoes and salt.
    • you start fast and a six year old passes you.
    • you are the only one walking the up hills.
    • you run it a second time because its not far enough to call a training run (and you were racing the first time through).
    • you are the only one around who is eyeing the bushes THAT way.
    • you punch the lap button on your watch instead of the stop button at the finish.

  59. When "NEXT GAS 36 MILES" signs start sounding like tempting runs.

  60. Your pedicure kit includes a pair of pliers.

  61. Your number of toes to toenails doesn't match.

  62. You drink from a water bottle at the dinner table.

  63. You consider the mold and mildew in your bottles extra electrolytes.

  64. You just found out Poison and Oak are words by themselves.

  65. You see a 1 quart water bottle colored like an Advil bottle, and don't realize that it's not in fact an Advil bottle.

  66. You know you're married to an ultrarunner when Valentine's gifts come from Ultrafit.

  67. You know you're married to an ultrarunner when she helps you up and says, "Come on, suck it up, keep moving!" and you know she means it in love.

  68. You know you're an ultrarunner when a prospective employer asks for a photograph and all you have is race photos.

  69. You know you're an ultrarunner when the races you enter end in a different area code. -and pass through several different Zip codes enroute.

  70. You know you're an ultrarunner when your crew tries to keep you motivated by saying, "You're in second place and only 6 hours behind first with 25 miles to go!"

  71. You know you're an ultrarunner when you go to your 8:00 a.m. college geology class and you can use the salt crystals, still caked on your glasses frames from your early morning run, in your talk on the category of sedimentary materials called evaporites (and I'm not making this up).

  72. You know you're an ultrarunner when, on the night of a bad thunderstorm and downpour, you ring for a cab, and your announcement that this is the *first time* you're not getting home under your own steam causes a stunned silence in the office.

  73. You bother to argue about (discuss the meaning of) what an UltraRunner is!!!

  74. when you don't finish on the same day as the winner.

  75. your dogs can drink out of water bottles

  76. When you meet the opposite sex you see:
    • A possible crew.
    • A possible pacer.
    • A possible search and rescue team.
    • A possible race director.
    • A possible source of race entry fees.

  77. You ask advice of hundreds of people on a list, looking for answers you have already determined to be correct, taking hold of only those, and running with 'em.

  78. Your wife asks you the morning after your first 50 miler if you're still planning on that 100K in five weeks, and you say "Sure!"

  79. You strap on your water bottles and walk the hills... in a 5 K race and consider that your 10 minute pace is a blistering pace.

  80. People praise you to the high heavens for being able to finish a marathon, and you feel insulted.

  81. You do a triathlon and it is your RUN time that is slower than the years when you specialized in triathlon.

  82. You are told *not* to run another marathon during the next few months (because that would be bad for your health), and you really follow that advice - by immediately sending off the entry form for your next 50/100 miler.

  83. Somebody asks about the distance of an upcoming race and you, without thinking, say, "Oh, it's just a 50K."

  84. You're running a marathon and at mile 20 say to yourself, "Wow, only 6 more miles left, this is such a great training run!"

  85. You know you are a clumsy ultrarunner when after running headfirst into the trail for the third time get up and continue running even though you are bleeding and covered in maple syrup where your gel flask exploded and you have another 20k to go.

  86. You go for an easy 2 hour run in the middle of a Hurricane and think it is fun to get wet, muddy and run through the rivers that were once trails.

  87. You get to the 81 mile point of a 100 miler and say to yourself, "Wow, only 19 miles left!"

  88. You try to tie double knots in your Oxfords.

  89. You pass a swamp towards the end of a run and think 'How bad could it be?"

  90. Livestock salt blocks look good after a run.

  91. You're embarrassed that you've only done 50K's...

  92. Your wife/girlfriend/significant other asks you if you want to have sex on any particular night and you respond with:
    • "sorry, I don't have time, I have to go running"
    • "sorry, I'm too tired, I just went running"
    • "sorry, I would rather go read all my messages from the ultra-list"

  93. You go down a flight of stairs, uh, backwards, after an ultra and everybody laughs.

  94. No one believes you when you say "never again".

  95. You refer to certain 100 mile races as "low-key."

  96. You number your running shoes to distinguish old from new, since they all look dirty.

  97. Prior to running a difficult race, you check to see if local hospitals and urgent care centers are in your PPO.

  98. The only time major household projects get done is in a taper or race recovery.

  99. Everything in your life, everything, is organized in different sized zip-loc bags.

  100. You call a 50-mile race "just another training run".

  101. You think a 100-mile race is easier than a 50 miler because you don't have to go out as fast.

  102. You say, "Taper? Who's got time to taper? I have a race coming up this weekend."

  103. You're tapering/recovering, and you'd rather drive 50 miles to watch Ann Trason's heavenly running style for 20 seconds than the Super Bowl.

  104. You have to rent a car to drive to a major event because you and your pacer own stick shifts and neither will be able to drive them on the return trip.

  105. You actually DO drive a stick shift home with a severely pulled left hamstring

  106. You meet someone of the opposite sex on the trail of a 100 and all of conversation is about what color is your urine, can you drink? and were you able to dump.

  107. Ya know you're and ultra runner when a girl changes her tank and her bra in front of you and all you do is take another drink of water, look at your watch, get up and tell your pacer "Let's hit the trail."

  108. On a long drive you see the road signs listing various mileages to different places and think of how long it would take to get there on foot rather than by the car your driving.

  109. You've started a race in the dark, run all day, and finished in the dark (if your lucky).

  110. Your non-Ultrarunning running friends look at you strange when you tell them that 10:00/Mile is a fast pace for a 100 mile race (not to mention most ultras).

  111. You don't hesitate to lie down in the trail (anywhere) when you are falling asleep on your feet during the early morning hours on the second day of a 100 miler; and it feels so comfortable.


  112. You know your an ultrarunner when you actually sit down and read all of the postings about, "You know your an ultrarunner when..." and can laugh and relate to all of the comments.