Monday, November 23, 2015

Race Review: BGC Cycle Philippines 2015 (40km Challenge)


  1. Accurate race distance (40km)
  2. Sufficient marshals
  3. Great race org c/o Sunrise


  1. None that I could think of at the moment.


I wasn't expecting a good time on this one as I was 10lbs heavier than last year. Training has been so-so as well but I had more hill trainings this year compared to 2014.

At the end of numerous pushes on the flats at 100% FTP and keeping it in control on the Buendia flyover (twice), I finished at 1:20 (Garmin time) which was only about a minute or so slower than the Alaska race in MOA last May.

The cycling gods were generous.

Still, lots of improvement as I close my cycling season this 2015. Hoping for better race results next year as my 1:13 PR on 40km cycling races still stands.

Happy with my race time!

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Training Update....or the lack thereof

Well, it's official: I'm in a training slump. As of last week, my TrainingPeaks CTL has gone below 40 ---lowest value ever since I started training using the TP tool.

Will need to get my fitness back up. I bought a Garmin Vector 2S power meter late last month as a birthday gift to myself. It has opened my training on the bike immensely as it clearly showed that I SUCK at cycling in terms of watts. I hope it'll help me motivate myself to train more.

As for the run part, I may register for one more road race probably in early December.

Let's see if we see a positive green line back on that chart again, shall we?

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Race Review: Bike King Duathlon


  1. Challenging race course
  2. Sufficient hydration stations
  3. Sufficient marshals
  4. SCTEX babyyyy!

  1. Bike leg measured 57km only against the published 60km (bitin!)


I met my objective for this race which was simply to finish. I was not in PR-beating shape as I lacked the physical and mental conditioning leading up to this race which I only find myself to blame. Garmin time as below:

Run1 - 0:40:28 for 6km
Bike - 2:18:56 for 57km
Run2 - 0:29:12 for 4km

Finish time (chip time) - 3:35:54 (my PR is at 3:29 from last year)

What's disappointing was that I was even hoping, minutes before gun start, that I could surprise the racing gods by digging deep for a PR. This was obviously not the case as I found myself run-walking the last 2km of Run2 again. Further, the whole race distance was shorter this year than 2014 so my finish time could've been worse.

Before I move on I have to pick up the (hard) lessons from this one:

  1. Lack of long rides at proper training zones. I bonked after about 75% of the bike leg. I had my gel eating schedule on time but my conditioning for the 60km length and at race pace was lacking.
  2. Be more disciplined in doing my workouts. Although family and work needs to be prioritized, I have to stop being lazy and do my workouts when I have the time. 
  3. More hill sprints/intervals. I lacked the conditioning to run the whole of Run2, knowing that I will suffer in the last 2km hard uphill based on last year's performance. I should've done more. 
  4. Bring my weight down. A lighter bike this year vs 2014 obviously didn't work as I am heavier this year. Tsk, I need to lose 10 or 15lbs....starting now.

All in all, I'm happy to finish this one but I'm just disappointed at myself for not preparing, i.e. babying my training for this race. Tsk tsk....

59th out of 82 in my age group. Ugh!!!

Friday, September 25, 2015

BikeKing Duathlon 2015: Am I Ready?

Based on my TP PmC readings, I am not ready. I believe I can finish the race but not in PR-beating fashion. My PR for this race is a 3:29 from last year's version which has the exact same route as this year. Yup, including that last long bike climb towards T2 which made me run-walk the Run2 leg.

Tsk tsk. This is gonna hurt.

But I'm thinking positive as (1) I believe I'm better on the bike now compared to last year, particularly improving on my climbing skills, (2) I know the race route thus I can plan my target paces to hopefully still beat my PR, and (3) I've learned my lesson on that Run2 leg from last year. I will need to be patient with my bike pace so as to leave a little more for that remaining 4k run.

But yeah, I'll try to have fun while on that 6k-60k-4k sufferfest that is the SCTEX Duathlon.

Here we go!

Sunday, September 13, 2015

TP PmC Chart as of Sep.13, 2015

Thanks to, I am constantly informed on how depressing my training has been this year. I am having trouble reaching the elusive 50 TSS level (which I only breached once) which I hoped to be in by now as my A-race, the SCTEX Duathlon, is 2 weeks away.

I have slacked up a lot (red lines) no thanks to office work/stress, laziness, and a good combination of both. Last week, this was aggravated by a bad back coupled with flu, a broken bike FD cable and the occassional rains. I am below my average weekly TSS total for the past two weeks, Getting back on the horse, so to speak, has been excruciatingly impossible.

Oh, did I forget to say that I have not been losing the 10 lbs that I wanted due to delicious greasy food and extra rice?


Sunday, September 6, 2015

Review: Nike Free 5.0 (2014)

pic grabbed from
I've been running in the Nike Free 5.0 (2014 version) since early this year, replacing my trusty Brooks Pureflow for my easy and long runs. I bought in on discount in one of those Nike outlet stores located in Caltex, NLEX and I am greatly satisfied so far with the purchase since then. measures the stack height as 23mm (heel) and 15mm (forefoot) which gives an 8mm heel to forefoot difference ---which rightly complies to my minimalist running style. The D-width size gives enough wiggle room for my forefoot area. Mix it with the Dynamic Flywire technology to secure the foot, it provided a totally balanced, comfortable fit.

On the run itself, the shoe lives up to its name as I felt great running "free." The snug fit of the upper and the special design of the sole (which Nike terms as Hexagonal Flex Pattern) allows "free" movement of the foot as it goes thru the entire cycle of my running gait (midfoot strike......I think).

Overall, this is a very comfortable shoe that I think is good for easy paced runs ---including long runs. I used this in my last race (14.7km Class of Clans race) with the intention to "just finish it." Pace was relaxed which the shoe helped by making me forget about it and just run easy...and free. You can boost the speed if needed but I think its barefoot brother, the Nike Free 3.0, would be more up to the task when it comes to really increasing the tempo.

As it is already 2015, I can see the updated version of the Nike Free 5.0 in the stores which I think attests to the many runners who've been satisfied with its performance. I hope they continue this line as I will definitely get the latest version once I wear out my current pair (which is a loooooong way to go with the way my runs are lacking lately).

Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Monday, August 24, 2015

Race Report: Class of Clans 16k


  • Got hooked on registering this one as I'm a die hard CoC player. ;)
  • Started on time.
  • Start/Finish line was at km0. Getting the best view of that controversial DMCI building that photobombed the Rizal monument. Hehe.
  • Released runners in waves to avoid clogging at the start.
  • Sufficient number of water stations, ambulances, and race marshals
  • With a finisher's shirt and medal (along with the race shirt) at P750.00, this was a good deal!


  • 16k race route measured only 14.7k as per my Garmin. This was a big failure in my opinion, especially after Berwin Meily announced/stressed at the start that this was a 16k race. I was hoping to do a long run from my usual 12-13k runs so the distance recorded was disappointing.
  • No chip time as there was no chip on the racebib. :)
  • Saw mayhem going on at the baggage claim area in the end. Probably understaffed there as many runners had to wait for some time to claim their bags.


My plan was to run this just to finish. As this was my first road race in a long long time, I just joined to get that race feeling back again and hopefully log a long run for the year. The plan was just to relax, run at 140HR and see if I can up to tempo pace by the last 5 or 6k. I had a Clifbar Blocks pack so the 6 blocks (200 kcal) should be able to carry me throughout the race nicely.

It was a true test of self control as I managed to stick to my plan. My pace was between 7:00-7:15/km from the start until km9 (HR at 140). I changed my plan a bit towards the end since, at the halfway mark I saw that my Garmin only read 7.30km. The distance will fall short of 16k, I told myself, so I took the chance of increasing my pace from km10 onwards (6.53, 6.49, 6.35, 6.48, 6.38 per km). I was slightly huffing and puffing with my HR at 150 or so, but didn't have any real difficulty as this was a very flat course (except for the 2 flyovers).

Finished the 14.7km distance at 1:44:27 (Garmin time) with 7:06/km average pace. 

The 1.3km shortage on the race course was really a let down (except probably for the numerous walkers in the race that I passed by) so I hope the organizers will take a look into it in future races.

Next race? 

Hmmm, a  half marathon this year beckons....

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Race Shopping

My next duathlon is the SCTEX dua on Sep27 which is quite far away. This is good as it'll give me enough time to train, especially now that my TP CTL is down to 44.9 (previously at 41) due to work stress and daddy duties. I really need to up the ante.

So right now I'm (run) race window shopping. Looking at and for either a 10k or 21k race to join in. Long runs have been lacking (highest is 10k in the past few weeks, sigh) so signing up for a 21k could be a good way to push myself to run longer on the weekends.

Let's see if I sign up for one. These extra 7 lbs REALLY need to go.

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Race Recap: Alaska Cycle 2015

Venue for this annual race was moved from BGC to MOA last May 17 (yeah, sorry for the late post) so the flats and flyovers coupled with the 4 rounds made up for a good Sunday 40km workout.

I did well, IMHO, considering that I was on a lot of work related stress days before that race and that I finished a duathlon race the Sunday prior. Finish time was at 1:19 which put my average speed to a bit over 30kmh. My PR for a race as this is about 1:16, so I was happy to be well within range.

This, however, shouldn't make me overconfident as there are a lot of races ahead this year. I am (very) down in terms of Trainingpeaks CTL value so I've a lot to do in terms of getting back into form.

A great thanks to the organizers of the Alaska Cycle as they did a good job, including the race that my kids entered in the previous day.

That fat tummy has to go. Seriously.

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Race Recap: PhilDuaSeries Leg2 2015

The good:

  1. Good venue, race route
  2. Accurate distance
  3. Sufficient hydration stations
  4. Good number of race marshals
  5. Improved bike-check in (no more waiting in line, yey!)

For improvement:

  • Had to wait for over an hour after I finished the race to claim my bike and other stuff. I think the wrist band system should already cover possible theft so there's no need to wait for the last participant to finish the bike leg.

Race plan:

I missed 3-4 days of training 2 weeks prior to the race due to work related matters, so I had to limit my performance on this one especially on the run. Plan was to run tempo during Run1, ride tempo to hard, and then see if I can run on empty by Run2.

Race performance:

The 2 loop course on Run1 was a share of flats and short to medium climbs. I was able to keep my pace on target, finishing it on 6:28/km and 150bpm average.

Lookin' good at Run1

I rate myself as between "good" and "very good" on the 4 loop bike leg, managing to ride the false flats on my big ring. I got worried at one point as I might pay in Run2 for all that heavy lifting on the bike, but I just said to myself that Run2 is only 3km so I think I should be ok. I finished the bike leg in 1:09 and 26.3kph speed. Btw, the switching of pace/HR monitoring from my Forerunner 410 and Edge 800 and back was seamless, so I was able to monitor my bike parameters during the ride (cadence included).

My legs were still feeling good at the start of Run2, so I took the opportunity to speed up and take on the struggling runners one by one. I doused my head with water at every aid station. HR was high, as I weirdly expected (HR ave on Run2 was 160!). I guess this proved to be the result of the lack of run mileage and hard run workouts (tempos, intervals, bricks) that my body has not become used to lately. I have to improve on that. Run2 ended at 6:14/km which was quite good given the non-preparation for this race.

I looked at the race clock as I crossed the finish line and it read 2:14 and change which is a 2-minute PR from last year! YAHOO!

I was actually clapping on another participant who wouldn't allow me to beat him on the line. Good sprint anyway! Hehe...

I think that good showing on Run2 helped a lot. But then again, the PR could've been better than 2:14 have I done the needed training 2 weeks prior.

Next duathlon is on July (Clark), again by the org team of PhilDua (now Leg3). Improving my weight is a must by then, as my race pics just show how sluggish-looking I'm in. Still envious of those other athletes without abs, but hey I heard #Dadbod is becoming a trend? Hehe.

This weekend is the Alaska Cycle event and I'm excited for my 2 boys who'll be joining the kid race on Saturday morning. I'll be racing the next day, Sunday, on the 40km challenge so I hope to do good there as well.

Now, back to training....

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Getting There

My TP CTL value has finally breached the 50 level, now at exactly 52.3 with a TSB of -12.3. This was greatly contributed by pushing myself to workout during the weekdays and going for longer rides and runs on the weekends. Special attention to the long run as I have forced myself to run more than 10k (my last >10k run was Feb 2015). It had dwindled to 8k before I chose to correct it, increasing my long run distance to 10k, 12k, 17.5k, and, just yesterday, 18.5k. Pace is oh so slow for the last two runs as I've been running with an officemate on Saturday mornings who chose to get himself back into running shape. It's ok I guess as the slow pace trains me into utilizing fat and not glycogen to run, which will be most helpful in race situations.

I hope the slow but sure increase of CTL value continues from hereon, as I want to get back into the fitness level before I decided to go back to self-coaching last Aug 2014, wherein CTL was probably a little above 70.


I've registered to the May10 PhilDua Leg2 in Gen. Trias, Cavite which will be a 6k-30k-3k affair. I ran this race last year, with a somewhat torture of a bike leg (repeat loop of a long false flat and descent). Getting my family checked-in at the nearby Microtel will help as I don't have to cram in driving from Manila to Cavite just to reach the venue before 6am.

The thought of joining my first 21k since 2013 has been tossed in the ring after yesterday's completion of running 18.5k. I think I can finish 21k, but not at the pace that I wanted it before. But it gave me the confidence to sign up for Milo 21k in July. Let's see what happens in the coming weeks, if I remain consistent with my long runs.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Race Recap: PhilDuaSeries Leg1 2015

The good:

  1. Good race route
  2. Sufficient hydration stations
  3. Good number of race marshals
  4. Great turnout of over 800 duathletes!

For improvement:

  1. Started an hour late (7am) due to only 1 laptop processing the reg/bike check-in. 
  2. Inaccurate distance based on my Garmin: 
    • Run1 was 4.17km instead of 4km
    • Bike was 27.6km instead of 25km
    • Run2 was 4.77km instead of 4km

Race plan:

Trainingpeaks TSS was at 6+, which meant that the 1 week cram for taper may somehow work. I was able to put in a tempo and speedwork session 2 weeks prior to race day so hopefully that will carry me here. Plan was to pace Run1 at 6:30/km, Bike at 27-28kmh, and Run2 at 6:00/km. Gels must be taken every 30mins as prescribed. My standing PR for a 4-25-4 duathlon is 1:47 (2014). I am not aiming for that (yet), but finishing somewhere in that vicinity, at my current shape, would be a good boost for the season.

Race performance:

The delay in gun start proved one thing was for sure: by the time I start Run2, it'll be very hot. Thus, I went to the water station near the starting area and gulped as much as I can.

By 7am, we were off running.

That's me in the Smart tri top
Run1 was supposed to be 6:30/km but my Garmin (and my adrenalin) had other plans: 6:00/km. I was feeling somewhere between ok and great so I kept it at that pace, thinking that it's only 4km anyway and that I will just hydrate and recover as much as I can on the bike. Run1 finished at 25:20 with 6:06/km average pace. Took a gel after km1.

The bike was next and I was all too familiar with the Nuvali loop already, probably being my 3rd or 4th time here. I managed to do well, IMO, as I pushed the long low-grade climbs and short high-grade ones on the way to a 26.0kph average for the 27.6km ride. Slacked off probably on the downhill mainly to recover for Run2. Maybe I should've pedaled more then. Took a gel 20mins into the ride and another one just before reaching T2.

Run2 will show how much I am prepared (or not) for this race. My last duathlon, the one in Porac, saw me bonking and walking Run2. It showed that I wasn't able to pace myself during Run1 and the Bike that I had nothing left for Run2. An unforgettable experience for me.

This time, I was able to pace myself well, running the 4.7km course in 6:09/km pace. I was running constantly and fully concentrated on the effort. I doused myself with water in the hydration stops so that helped, even if I think that the weather then was sunny but not that hot. I wasn't even mindful of the exceeded distance (0.77km) as I was running smoothly, IMO. 

What worried me in Run2 was that average HR was at 161, with peak HR at 176. Run1 ave HR was only at 151. I may need to find out how to improve on this for the next race. Probably more bike-run brick workouts next time?

I finished the race in 2:04. Because of the added distance, if I calculate the average paces I raced with the 4-25-4 distance plus estimations on the T1 and T2 time, I may have finished at 1:55. That's pretty acceptable for me. 

Definitely with a big room for improvement.

Oh well, there's always the next race to look forward to. :)

Thursday, March 5, 2015

All set.....I think

After a month since my last post, overall TP CTL value is still at 46. I hoped to reach 50 by now but family commitments during the weekends suspended most of my scheduled long rides. Maybe March will be kind to help me reach my goal.

My running TP CTL has been progressing nicely while my cycling CTL has been stagnant due to as mentioned above.


On races, a conflict in scheduling forced me not to race in last month's planned 10k in BGC. Good thing there's an upcoming duathlon next week in Nuvali: 4k-25k-4k which should be able to help me gauge as to where I am fitness wise. I hope to do well by then.

Yup, I'll report the results after the Mar15 duathlon ---which I hope to be positive.

That's it for now.

Friday, February 6, 2015

Still Here

Yup, still here.

Training has been better compared to late last year with my TP CTL now between 46-47. It's still a long way to go than where I was mid last year but I'm getting there. Mixing my training with family and work stuff has been ok somewhat, with me having to give up the planned workout for the day at times when more important matters need to be prioritized. But I still make it a point to recover for it in the succeeding days.

2015 kicked off to a good start as January reflected a 1500+ total TSS, which was somewhere between my Sept and Oct 2014 totals. Elevation gain was improved as well as the popular Antipolo climb has been a regular route on Saturday morning rides.

That long weekend when Pope Francis came was when the family went to Subic. The wife and kids like it there and so do I (grin) as I logged back to back hard workouts: a 65km ride up to Morong with mostly hard climbs, and a 5-24 brick the next day. Lovin' Subic, yeah!

Instagram pics from that 65km (enjoyable?) elevation-packed ride


I had to send one of my two cars for repairs which took almost 2 weeks. As my wife used the other, I took the opportunity to try the #BikeToWork gig for about 4 or 5 days which I loved. It was about 10km from the house to the office so I got a good workout and saved on travel time as a bonus. The car's fixed but I still hope to bike to work if I get the opportunity. Nothing like weaving thru the morning rush hour traffic and cutting my travel time in half.


I'm still about 7-8 lbs away from my best weight so it's still a challenge shying away from lunch outs, pasta/pancit office meriendas, and weekend pig outs. Good thing the office department started the annual Biggest Loser contest which I hope motivates me to control my eating. Let's see on the final weigh-in by early April if I'm able to get it back to normal.


I've registered for two races. First will be the Financial Fitness Run 10k on Feb22 as I want to get some speed back in my legs. A sub-60 would be great but I doubt it with the condition that I'm in. But let's see if I can pull off a miracle. The second race will be the March15 duathlon in Nuvali. It's a short one (4-25-4) but it's a good early gauge to help me adjust for the rest of the year's races.

Hoping to have a PR-beating season this year so I'm hoping that I constantly train when I have the time and not let laziness and overeating rule the day. A half-marathon is in the wishlist. Depending on how I perform there, a journey back to the full-mary game *might* be a possibility.

See you around!