Tuesday, December 11, 2018

2018 Review of Goals

As 2018 comes to an end, it's time to look back at the goals I set last January and see how I fared in terms of trying to achieve them.


  1. Milo 21k. - DONE. Achieved sub-2:30 to meet the cutoff.
  2. BikeKing Duathlon. - DONE. Achieved a PR in terms of average pace
  3. National Duathlon Championships. - NOT DONE. This race got canceled.

  1. One (or two) PhilDua Races. NOT DONE. It was either conflict with weekend life priorities or sometimes plain unpreparedness.
  2. Pinoy Fitness Sub1 10. DONE. Achieved a Sub60 to meet the cutoff.
  3. One local 21k race before Milo 21k. NOT DONE. Wasn't able to schedule this unfortunately.
  4. One international 10k or 21k race. NOT DONE. Went to Korea last summer but wasn't able to find a race during our stay there. Will be in Japan after Christmas but also haven't found any race there....yet.
Fitness Goals:
  1. Lose 15 lbs. FAILED. Ugh!!!
  2. Achieve a peak CTL of 75. FAILED. Was only able to reach the lower 50s.
  3. Achieve a bike FTP of 210. FAILED. Was only able to peak at 180+ but went back to 169 after a few weeks of no training. But I am still happy with the improvements I've made on bike, having increased my FTP from 155 to 169 since Nov 2017.
  4. Set a sub-2:20 21k and a sub-1 10k. FAILED on the 21k but DONE on the 10k.
  5. Ride for 100km. FAILED.
If I were to score this overall based on count (total of 12 items), I will get a disappointing achievement rate of 37.5% ---not really something to be proud of.

Well, there's 2019 to look forward to. I hope to race more (raced only thrice this year) and tick more items on my Fitness Goals list.

But then, with all that's happening with me with family and work priorities, I am still (somewhat) happy to being able to squeeze in my trainings whenever I can despite the hectic sked.

I just need to put in more in terms of delivering the goods (Fitness Goals) and more will power to train at a higher level (to register for more races).

Hopefully it will be a better score for me on 2019.

How was your 2018?

Sunday, November 4, 2018

Improvements (I think)

Although it's been quite a long while since I last posted, run and bike training has been constant for the past 2 months. I have slowly crept back up in the upper 40s CTL thanks to diligently following my workouts for the week. Hopefully, I will be back im the 50s CTL soon.

I was able to ride up Antipolo last weekend (my last climb before that was probably May this year) and the new Ultegra R8000 groupset I had installed before Sept this year held up well. The 11-30 cassette had me grind up the 2+ km stretch from Jollibee to Cloud9 better than I had hoped ---effort wise. No Strava PR was made but looking at my TP ride for max 12min power between my May and last weekend's ride showed the following:

1. I was able to increase cadence by about 10.
2. Power recorded during that 12min stint was lower by 10 watts.
3. Speed was roughly the same, about 0.2kmh difference.

Unfortunately I wasn't wearing a HRM last weekend, but I bet ave HR in last weekend's ride could be lower.

Higher cadence, less power, same speed. Hmmm...

The 11-30 cogset which I used in the climb could be the main contributer of the "improvement." Coming from an 11-25 cogset, I can safely say that the cogs >25 offered quite a relief tackling that climb that I have known for quite a while now.

I will know for sure once I get to add more of these Antipolo rides in the coming weekends.

Plus keeping the weekly training constant, of course. ;-)

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

BikeKing Duathlon 2018: Race Report

  1. Bike leg on the SCTEX.
  2. Well positioned aid stations especially on the bike leg
  3. Nice giveaway bag.
  1. Bike leg measure only 56kms (bitin!)


I was probably about 80% ready for this race since I've done this dua several times. The run1 and run2 legs were going to be flat, which was a great relief for me as I never got to pick up the weekly mileage leading up to this race. This was the same for the bike, wherein my longest was a sole 2.5hr chillax ride in Nuvali peppered with Trainerroad workouts here and there.

Run1 went smoothly as planned with an average pace of 6:36/km. It was then off to the bike leg where I will see how my Trainerroad sessions since Nov 2017 will pay off. I set my Garmin such that I only see the Ave 3s power, cadence, and speed. The power value took half of the screen which is what I wanted since I want to look at it to ensure that I am well below my FTP. 

Went aero by grabbing the aerobars during the flat and downward sections whenever I can (which is probably the reason why my right lower back is aching since Monday night, hehe).

Average speed for the entire 55.4km bike leg was 26.5kmh ---a modest improvement from my 25.8kph recorded in the same race last year (though with a longer 62km distance). Take note: same bike, but different engine. ;-)

Run2 started off well in the 6:30s per km but drifted off from km2 to 4 in the near 7:00s. I'm not sure why this happens often (I experienced the same in the 2017 version of this race). I'm guessing that it's probably over fatigue from the whole race effort that the body starts complaining by that point. Run2 average speed ended at 6:56/km which is almost the same as my 2017 Run2 (6:58/km).

Finished the race in 3:20:40 ---a decent improvement from my 3:36 finish last year (but again, a longer bike distance then).

In summary, I need to improve on my runs despite having modest improvements on the bike. Well, I do need to improve a lot on the bike so thank goodness there's Trainerroad to keep me focused.

I'm thinking of ending my 2018 race season here but we'll see. There's a couple of good duas in the coming months but with current load in work and personal stuff, getting a good performance out of it will be tough.

As usual, we'll see....

Monday, August 20, 2018

And Here I Go Again

Three weeks left until another A-race, the BikeKing duathlon, and my training logs indicate that I am very UNDERTRAINED....again.

Much to blame are the usual suspects: the rain, family priorities, late night gatherings, bass guitar practice, and just plain ol' lack of motivation to get up in the morning to run or bike.

I've been in the same state in preparation to my last race, the Milo Manila 21k, in which I suffered badly midway but squeezed out a sub-2:30 time to get that medal.

I really NEED to change my morning outlook in order to just "get up and go" so to speak. Probably keep myself away from my phone to prevent opening up my social media apps to lazily pass off the time.

I still have time left, I think, but I need to REALLY get this going A-SAP.

Tsk tsk....

Sunday, July 29, 2018

Milo Manila 21k: Barely Made It


1. Great race org that is always expected from Runrio

2. Unique finisher hoodie for 21k and 42k racers

3. Medal cutoff time for 2.30 made it challenging. Gorgeous medal btw.

For Improvement:

1. Less rain (hehe). Although Runrio can't do anything about it obviously.

2. Disorganized at the 21k finishers area as no organizer made the participants to queue, making it look like a marketplace just to claim the loot bag and hoodie.

My race

I was coming into this, one of my A races for the year, terribly undertrained. Having only a lone 16k long run 4 weeks ago with several 10-12k runs on weekends made me worried if I was gonna finish it, but I was able to mentally condition myself that "I will finish this, and I will be holding that coveted medal by race's end."

That was my mantra for this one.

I arrived about 30mins before the gun went off, with just enough time to prepare my gels and walk to the starting corral which had a lot of 21k runners.

Gun went off at 3.30am as scheduled and I was running.

I was doing quite well from the start (as every runner there was), pacing between 6.40 to 6.55 per km for the first half of the race. The route was relatively flat and, with the rainy weather cooling us, it was made for a perfect Sunday morning pikermi.

Took my 1st gel inside km7 btw.

The problem started by the time I reached km12 where the Makati avenue turnaround point was. To put it simply, I started to have difficulty running. I felt a slight pain on my stomach and some tiredness in my legs ---probably a result of being undertrained--- which started my purgatory for thid race.

It was a battle of wills from then on back to Roxas blvd where I found myself taking walk breaks several times. I took another gel at km13 but it took a while before it had a short effect, as I was continuing to walk run heading back.

Good thing I had a spare gel and took it at km18, just to mentally calm myself from issuing a bonk alert. My shoes and socks were soggy and wet, Macapagal avenue road was full of puddles and loose asphalt, and my legs just hurting all over made it a struggle.

I was running but taking 10 second walk breaks whenever I felt I can't run no further. My body was failing but my mind was still mentally strong as I debated myself from walking completely. My confidence was also boosted as I was computing my estimated finish time for almost every km mark or when I chose to walk. I was still gonna make sub 2.30 I thought, so I just embraced the pain and forced myself to run.

By the last turn to the finish, I was just thoroughly out of it physically but my mind kept me going, running my all as I went to the finish line.

2:28:40 in 21.1kms as per my Garmin.

Sub 2:30 accomplished.

It was one of those races that I would rather forget due to my poor performance brought about by poor training, or the lack thereof.

But this was Milo. A race that I have come to put my upmost respect due to its 42 years of tradition. Having finished it within the cutoff time was still something I should celebrate about ---even when my training was lacking.

I fell in line after crossing the finish line. Bowed my head in front of the organizer as he donned that finisher medal on my neck.

I looked at it with a smile as I walked for the loot bag. Looking at this race positively, it just meant that at my age now, I am STILL able to complete 21k races AND at sub2.30 time ---something that other guys in my age may not be able to do.

Yup, still happy overall on this one, but I hope to train better for future 21k races (yes there will be more, but not anytime soon) so as not to encounter a similar bad experience on the race as this one did.

Congrats to all finishers of the Milo Manila leg!!!

Monday, July 16, 2018

Just Getting What I Can

A month since my last post and I was able to find time to get this one in.

Training has been so-so as I am less than 2 weeks away from Milo 21k, my next race.

Longest long run done was 16k the other weekend. I was supposed to do an 18k last Sunday but I had to skip it due to having donated blood the day before. Much to my dismay, donating blood prohibits you from tedious exercise or lifting heavy objects until the next day so I decided to skip the long run in order not to have a medical accident that may ensue.

The rains have come occassionally so it affected my training as well ---a.k.a. bed weather. Hehehe.

I still have this two weeks supposedly for taper time but I may have to change it a bit to meet the endurance requirements to complete a half marathon....with upmost care not to get injured.

I have this feeling that I will be able to hold that sub 2:30  finishers medal next weekend.

I hope I got the feeling right. Hehehe.

Thursday, June 14, 2018


On occasion, I would try to measure my progress in run and bike via time trials (for run) and FTP tests (for bike). I have done both very recently and, unfortunately, both have yielded bad results ---no thanks to not following my training programs to the letter be it due to laziness or family/work priorities.


I have this workout that I called "Run TT" or Run Time Trial wherein I warm up for about 10 or so minutes followed by an all out 30 minute run. Whatever the average pace I record for that 30-min period, I will consider as my threshold pace.

My last Run TT was Feb23, a couple of weeks before my 10k race (PF Sub1). In that workout, my threshold pace was at 5:53/km. Needless to say that I was able to meet my sub60 10k goal weeks later.

Fast forward to today, Jun14, I decided to do a time trial again. 

It was miserable.

My supposed 30min lap ended at around 24mins when I couldn't run at a good pace any longer, stopping my Garmin at 4km. My average pace was at 6:06/km ---13 seconds slower vs Feb. This could mean I need to improve my base which I have lost in recent weeks.


I tried out the latest creation of the developers at Trainerroad: the Ramp Test workout wherein it boasts of a shorter and more accurate(?) way to measure one's FTP. It has gone thru rigorous testing according to the creators in the TR podcast, so why not give it a shot, right?

The result: my FTP dropped 20 WATTS. I may have a way out here as I had to repeat the first 10 minutes of the workout. I was tinkering with my Spotify app to select a good playlist for the workout when I accidentally exited the TR app. This *could* be a reason for the 20 watt drop so I will have to try this test again soon, i.e. next Tuesday.

But if I get a similar (drop) result, it will be very demoralizing indeed. 

We'll find out on Tuesday. ;-)


Milo 21k is 6 weeks away while SCTEX Duathlon is 12 weeks away. 

Based on my recent measurements, I am wayyyyy down in terms of race readiness. Fortunately, I still have time to recover and progress back up to a better form. 

Hopefully I'll be alright by the time the gun fires on race day.

Thursday, June 7, 2018

Milo 21k - Registered!

Just a quick post to say that, yes, I already signed up online for the 21k Manila Leg of the Milo Marathon on July 29.

A sub-2:30 finish is a must in order to get that much coveted finisher's medal.

Finally, my 2018 season is in full gear! :D

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Itching to Race

As (tough) luck would have it, the PhilDua Leg3 @ Nuvali was moved by the organizer from Jun24 to Aug 26. Venue moved to Clark as well.

So there won't be any duathlon for me until probably Sept 9 which is my much awaited A-Race:

The BikeKing Duathlon. :D

Yup, I already registered for it today so serious training time is a must. No more dilly-dallying on whether to go outside for a run or ride my bike for another Trainerroad session. No more whimpy, lazy excuses, hehe.


Another race that I'm waiting for is the end July Milo 21k. There's not been any announcement yet on whether online registration is already open so I have to wait 'til then. I *think* I'm ready for it distance-wise so the only thing I need to work on is my pace which is severely lacking at this point.


Work has been peppered lately with overnight system activities so precious training time has been decreasing as I need to recover with sleep. Hopefully I can find a way to schedule my run/bike sessions so that I still maintain the weekly volume in order to keep my fitness up.


A big congratulations btw to all the finishers of the recently concluded Ironman Philippines @ Subic. Time to rest, boys and girls!

And yes, you deserve that long deprived pizza and pasta! Enjoy! :D

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Not Racing, But Improving (I think)

Three weeks since I last posted (coming from a vacation abroad) and I am still on catch up mode in terms of getting back to my pre-vacation CTL levels.


My FTP improved quite somewhat after I did an FTP test last week. A modest 6%+ increase from my previous test 2 months ago indicates that the Trainerroad Build program I followed reaped me good benefits. I'm moving on to the Specialty Phase (I chose the Climbing Road Race Low Volume plan) which will be a 6 week affair. After which, since races are impossible to sked lately, I may have to go back to Base phase and just aim on increasing my FTP in the meantime (my aim btw for this year is to reach 200w).


As predicted, another family vacation (it was my parents' anniv) was scheduled last weekend so
joining Duaman was definitely out. I read that it was a challenging race with the inclusion of the Camp N route so I'm (a bit) jealous of the duathletes who were able to participate.

I'm still hopeful to toe the line for a duathlon (next up is PhilDua Leg4 on June24 @ Nuvali ---doable if no other weekend plans conflict) and maybe the Milo21k on July which boasts of a strict medal cutoff time of 2:30 (doable based on my 2017 times ---which I'm hoping has been kept 'til now in terms of fitness). So between now and then, I'm just moving week on week trying to hit my planned workouts for the day. This is in the hope that I'll be on a higher fitness/CTL level come race day (whichever race it may be).


I joined my sister last mid March on her quest to lose (hopefully a lot) of weight via venturing into Intermittent Fasting.

Disclaimer: I don't recommend this for everyone, mind you, so consult your doctor first before trying what I did.

I tried the IF 16:8 method wherein I would fast 16 hours (typically after dinner to before lunch time, skipping breakfast) and then eat for the next 8 hours ---then repeat. It was very difficult mentally at first as I would do my run/bike workouts in the morning with the expectation that I would eat something for breakfast as my recovery nutrition. After 2 days I was able to adjust (with the help as well of sipping Cold Brew Coffee), keeping the 16 hours of fasting even after an hour of (Z2 or intense) workout in the mornings.

I often fail on meeting the 16hr daily fasting requirement (especially on weekends) but it didn't stop me from logging my start/end fast times to force the habit.

The result? I lost 4 lbs after 2 months of intermittently intermittent fasting. :D Yep, it's a slow progress but if the weight is kept off longer that way, then I'm all for it.

Red line notes my weight increasing since Oct 2017 (birthday, parties, quit the gym) while the green line shows my weight loss after I started IF mid March 2018.

What's good is that I was able to continue with my mornings even after an hour of working out. Hopefully I get to see more improvement in the next 2 months.

Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Some Downtime

Long gap again since I last posted due to work piling up in the office lately. I finally found the time to blog this just before my family and I wrap up our South Korea trip which started Apr 29. As in my previous trips abroad with the family, I would pack my running gear to keep my fitness up but this vacation in Korea involved too much walking that my legs just wanted to lie down in the evening.

Daily step average would be around 16 to 17 thousand steps as per my android phone which is normally the number of steps I'd take for an hour and a half of running (or roughly 12km). It's still exercise, I think, such that I wouldn't get my running habit started for the day (or night).

Obviously, my TrainingPeaks fitness/form status has dropped since Sunday by about 5 or 6 CTL points. Thus, I will have to make up for it by the time I get back to Manila.

But take note, I'm not complaining. In spite of the endless walking daily, I'm happy to get some downtime ---work wise or training wise.

Monday, April 9, 2018

Missing Duathlon Races

I will unfortunately miss these upcoming duathlons as conflicting family events need to be prioritized:

- Apr8 Clark Dua Classic
- Apr29 Phil Dua Leg2
- May6 Clark Global City Dua

Such is the predicament of us age groupers who aren't like our pro/elite counterparts who race for a living. Family is on top of everything else which is what it should be.

Just miss the dua racing atmosphere though.


Racing duas may have to wait a little while longer. I will probably try to squeeze a 10k or 21k run race this month on a free weekend to keep my running pace in check (10k) and to condition myself for Milo 21k.

In parallel I am still following my Trainerroad plan to improve my cycling, switching to a twice a week plan since I would rather ride outside on weekends. This has been working slowly but surely in terms of CTL improvement.

I think by the 2nd half of this year I may be in a good condition to try racing Powerman full ---something that I have been contemplating to race for sometime now. But nothing definite yet as the Natl Dua Championships is scheduled a few weeks after it. Yup, I may have to end up choosing only one of these.

If the (dua) itch needs to be scratched soon, then the next available (and probable) one that I can reg for will have to be Duaman Nuvali on May20. It's short compared to Powerman or standard dua distance, but it'll help condition me in getting used to dua race environment again.

We'll see....

Friday, March 30, 2018

PF Sub1 10k: What I Learned

Just leaving a few notes here on what I learned from PF Sub1 10k before I think about what to race next.

1. HR monitor optional on race day. This is probably good to consider if I'm racing short races such as 5k 10k or sprint type duathlons. It just confuses me from monitoring what's more important like my run pace time or bike power during laps.

2. More cadence drills. At 174 steps per minute for this race, it's still below the recommended 180 s.p.m.

3. Lose weight. I could've finished faster had I disciplined myself from heavy weekend munching which added to my raceday excess baggage.

4. Probably a GU during the early kms? I only made good pace (5.40/km) on km5 to 6 and struggled keeping 5.50 thenafter. Maybe I need improvement on firming up my base fitness instead since the race is less than an hour?

Inspite of these self suggested improvements, I still consider last Sunday's race as a great comeback in terms of really fast running.

Hmmm, now to browse for my next race.


Sunday, March 25, 2018

PF Sub1 10k: Possible!

I was on my way to pick up Ling, my officemate who I coaxed into joining this race last January, on the way to MoA for the race when I realized I forgot to bring my HR strap. It was no biggie, I told myself, since I will have to race PFSub110k without it ---like Lance Armstrong who does his training runs without an HR monitor BUT with very strong sub 5/km pace.

I was aiming to give my all for this one but with careful consideration of how my 5k time trial training pace went (5:50/km) weeks back and a possible race distance of 10.3k as I earlier mentioned on my previous post.

We were on Wave2 which gave us a good time to warmup (walked probably close to a kilometer from where we parked, haha). I couldn't firm up my strategy for this race except for the main fact of NOT to go above 1hour.

We started on sked and it was the usual zigzagging in km1 to free up to get a good lane (just like EDSA on Monday morning traffic hehe). Kept myself from over exerting, probably a tad too much, as I let the atat boys and girls sprint by, with me and Ling clocking 6.05/km for that lap.

Pace went up a bit at 5.50/km as we felt good along km2-4. It was strange for me not seeing my HR coming up on my Garmin but a welcome sight as well as I only needed to check my pace ---which was the main goal anyway. Such is the appeal of time pressured races such as the PF Challenge series and the Milo 21k and 42k cutoff times: it really pushes you to your limit lest you will not be truly worthy, so to speak.

Midway in km4 I pulled ahead of Ling as I wanted to finish in good time. My 10k standing PR is at 56mins+ which will not be on the cards today due to my excess weight (sigh) but I was hoping somewhere at 59mins+ would be a job well done.

By midway I haven't stopped for water nor taken my emergency GU as I felt good amidst the extreme effort I was in. HR was probably  high but I was more conscious to keep my pace and cadence good, with the latter averaging 174 steps per minute by the end of the race. I clocked in at the 5.40s for the next 2kms.

By km7 it was mentally challenging to keep my pace in check, especially when the route made full use of that road from MoA to the Film Center (2 out and back ways). I was just keeping my form in check: run tall, lean, sway the arms on a straight plane, and just gut it out amidst the fatigue building up.

I have NEVER run at this near max effort for so long. My efforts on a 21k are also hard but not at this blazing pace (on my effort scale).

Had to waste a few seconds eventually as I succumbed to stopping at an aid station for a quick sip of Pocari which, in retrospect, may have helped.

By the last turn to the finish I was spent but still hanging on. It was gonna be a 10k route distance, I said, as I glanced my Garmin. It may exceed a few meters but I *think* it's in the bag.

As I neared the finish arc it was great to see the sub1 pacers and their red balloons stopped a few meters before the finish arc and was cheering every participant to finish sub1. Even the crowd near them was cheering the runners on ---something that I may have NEVER seen in my years of run racing.

For my case, it was a great welcome sight ---especially the race timer which just clocked 59mins (gun time) as I touched the finish mat.

Chip time based on my Garmin:

58minutes and 36 seconds for a 10.08km distance.

I looked back and saw Ling approached the finish as well, looking great and spent at the same time. He too glanced at the race timer and seemed to have beamed with confidence as he finished probably less than 20secs behind me.


Mission accomplished!

After 3 months of training and now in my mid 40s, today proved that I can still finish a 10k race below an hour. The last time I did such a feat was probably 5 or 6 yrs ago.

What's more satisfying is that I was able to help Ling finish sub1 as well. All those weekend long runs with him and the rest of the gang including his faithful dog Flash really helped get the needed weekly miles. The rest of the week was just egging ourselves to the prescribed speed/tempo session no matter how tempting it was to go back to bed instead.

And the rest after that, was just pure guts.

It feels good, man. Really is.

Friday, March 16, 2018

Pinoy Fitness Sub1 10k - Final Preps

Almost a month since my last post, I'm squeezing this in amidst plenty of office work. I am still training constantly, mind you, in preparation for the Pinoy Fitness Sub1hr 10k which is around the corner ---March 25 to be exact.

I "think" I am already there based on my training results. Clocking a good 29:13 5k on my last time trial, I will just have to manage the remaining 5k mentally to meet sub 1.

There is a slight problem, however. Yesterday I measured the race route on mapmyrun.com and, if I plotted it accurately, it seems that the route will exceed 10k by around 300 meters.

300 meters is a lot in terms meeting Sub 1hr.

This'll mean that I will have to lift my pace some more to compensate for the exceeded distance. I sent an FB msg to the organizers to fix the extra 300 meters but I doubt if they will make the necessary adjustments.

So, I will have to adjust then. Based on my calculations, the best average pace for a sub1 10.3k is 5:45/km. Whether it be a constant pace throughout or 5k-5:50 then 5k-5:40, either way will make me finish the race at around 59:12 to 59:30 ---barely making Sub 1.

It'll be a challenge to nail this one, but I'm very positive on my chances.

We'll find out after Mar 25.

Thursday, February 22, 2018

Training Update - 02/22/20218


Week on week progress has still been flat in terms of total duration/kms, but I guess that's better than regressing. Been disciplining myself from taking on the speed/tempo and long run sessions for the week so I hope that'll help me get into Sub-1hr 10k shape by March 25. I'm still a happy camper though since I get to push myself weekly to meet my planned run duration/kms for the week. Just need to increase it more though.


Just one more week left until I finish the 2nd half of my Base training and it'll be the Build Phase next which is 8 weeks as per Trainerroad. It's been a chore just to get the Trainerroad sessions in (those VO2max workouts surely got me to tap out) but I'm still there...probably about 80% confident going into the Build Phase. A change of riding environment this weekend as my family and I are spending the weekend in Nasugbu ---a good testing venue to see if all this TR indoor riding has really helped, especially on the climbs.


Still dilly-dallying at the 170-172lb range. I tried Intermittent Fasting last Tuesday and it seems that I should be able to manage it. However, I would have to find a way on how to align it with my workout sked so as not to feel drained after my runs and indoor rides. We'll see if IF can be THE solution to my weight problem.


Got my blood chem results from last Wed and all looked normal, a great surprise since I've been battling high cholesterol values for several years now. Not sure really what made it normal. Probably the combination of delivery diet food, the meds for cholesterol management that the doc prescribed (although I stopped taking those 3 weeks before my blood test), or maybe that brief IF attempt a day before the test. Hmmmm....

At any rate, I felt great seeing all those blood stats back in the normal range.

Hopefully they stay that way until my next exam which is probably this coming October.

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Training Update - 01/31/2018

Training has been moving as scheduled for my next race, the Pinoy Fitness Sub1 10k on March 25. Run volume progression has been rather flat per week (long runs have been at 10k at the most lately) so my Trainingpeaks CTL chart reflected the same non-growth. Pace, however, has been improving (I think so, hehe) as reflected in my speedwork and tempo workouts, logging in with modest sub-6mpk repeatedly as much as I can. As the race is less than 2mos away I may have to dwell longer at this mad pace to be able to do a sub1 hour 10k in time for race day (which is riding on a bet with an officemate, hehe) and, of course, longer long runs to up the weekly volume.

I will be missing the Feb25 Phildua Leg1 in Clark due to family commitments so possibly no duathlons for the 1st quarter of this year. However, my bike sessions via Trainerroad have been improving for these past 3 weeks (a 13 watt increase since I started last Nov with the Low Volume Base Plan Phase 1! YEHEY!) and it's been reflected as well in my form/fitness chart in TrainingPeaks. Hopefully this progress continues as I try to balance my preparations for the above mentioned 10k race vs improving my bike FTP.

Weight, well, is still a problem. I'm still at 172lbs (as of this am's weigh in) and it's been really hard to keep away from snacking and eating like I thought I ran a full marathon. I really (REALLY!) need to start controling this so that all that run and bike training don't go to waste.


Friday, January 19, 2018

2018 Goals

I will set my goals differently this year such that I will also include fitness/training goals aside from my target races to join in.

And so, in no particular order, here they are:


  1. Milo 21k. I backed out last year as I (1) felt that I didn't have enough training to go sub-2:30 and (2) the medical requirements were too much of a hassle to do. Hopefully I will be able to toe the line this year. 
  2. BikeKing Duathlon. This is one duathlon race that I almost always sign up yearly. Great org and great venue (SCTEX?!?!!), this is definitely one of my A-races.
  3. National Duathlon Championships. My first ever duathlon was this one so it'll be good to come to race-friendly Subic again to see how I fare vs the best.
  1. One (or two) PhilDua Series races. This'll be good tune-up dua races to get used to race strategies whether nutrition, pace, or transition related.
  2. Pinoy Fitness Sub1 10k. My officemate and I have signed up for this March race on a bet. Training for this race will help me get my pace up in time for duathlon season.
  3. One local 21k race before Milo 21k. This is for tune-up as well.
  4. One international 10k or 21k race. Will have to see if this will be in sync with any of the family trips.
Fitness goals:
  1. Lose 15 lbs. I am now hovering at 170-172lbs which is over the BMI for my height. I REALLY have to manage my eating habits so that the calories I burned during training won't go to waste.
  2. Achieve a peak TP CTL of 75. This is a Trainingpeaks training parameter which stands for Chronic Training Load, or how fit someone is based on his/her training logs for the past 30 days. My CTL is currently at 48 so I have a lot of work to do here.
  3. Achieve a bike FTP of 210. This can only be achieved by religiously riding on the prescribed days set by my TrainerRoad plan. 
  4. Set a sub 2:20 21k and a sub1 10k. Yup, we'll see how this one goes.
  5. Ride for 100km. Had only achieved this once. I don't mind finishing another one. :)

Let's go!!!

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

2017 In Review

Before I start blogging for 2018, it would be best that I do a quick recap of how I performed last year.

My goals for 2017 were:

  1. BikeKing Duathlon (DONE!)
  2. Powerman MOA (WASN'T HELD)
  3. Completing the PhilDua series (DID ONLY 1)
  4. Milo Metro Manila 21k (Mmmm, chickened out. Hahaha!)
  5. A RunRio 21k (NOPE, BUT DID 2 21k races for Q4)
  6. An international race perhaps? (DONE! Taipei 21k!)
  7. Powerman Clark (the full distance?) (Schedule conflict)

I did 8 races (running and duathlons combined) last year compared to 6 in 2016. I think I did fairly well considering that I improved my half marathon time in 2016 by 16+ minutes in 2017. Running the distance twice was a major milestone as well, since I haven't been that dedicated to the distance for some years prior to 2017. The half marathon is a "just right" endurance race for me since it is not time consuming in terms of weekly training, but it still is a long distance that you need to properly plan for it with proper pace (that comes from training) and nutrition strategies. Further, ideally, you could do 4-5 in a year versus probably 1 or 2 for a full mary. I don't want to close it at this point, but it seems that the 42k is already ticked off in my bucket list (4 times done, with the last in 2012) such that I don't feel like doing one anytime soon.

I scored two PRs in the duathlon (Duaman and PhilDua Leg2) but I could've logged 3 if not for the longer bike leg in the Bike King Dua. I logged a better pace in that race but it wasn't enough for the longer bike leg distance.

But if I were to summarize, 2017 was a good year for me in general. Although laziness and family obligations kept me from logging some of my workouts, I still nailed most of them ---even just by getting out of bed, getting my gear on, and walking out the door to run or ride. It could've been better of course, but it was all in all a good year.

Onto 2018.....

Monday, January 1, 2018

Race Review: Goodnight Taipei Half Marathon

The good:
  1. Afternoon gun start. Relieves the pressure of having to wake up early.
  2. Cold December weather at about 19C as this was in Taiwan.
  3. Water station (with water, bananas and energy drink) every 3km
  4. Finisher face towel upon crossing the line (along with the good looking medal).
  5. Great giveaways like the night light, and 2 big siopaos upon finishing.

For improvement:
  1. Online registration in English would be nice (had to use the Chrome translate feature so I was a bit worried on how/where to get my racekit. Good thing the organizer was very helpful when we chatted over FB messenger)

My race:

I was under trained (long run wise) and gained about 2-3lbs coming into this race. The only thing going for me here is that the race was (almost) entirely flat as it was held in a big recreational park in Taipei. The Dajia Recreational Park is a great venue for runners, bikers, and any other past time that you would like to do. It's about 2-3 (or maybe even 4?) times longer than our Rizal Park as we were able to run 21k in one loop.

Onto the race, it was great to know that Dennis (owner of Running Fatboy blog) was able to race alongside me as well. Per, his wife, was also there for support. 

I was planning to improve on my last 21k (2:27:15 at Nutrilife last Oct15) but it was going to be difficult due to the lack of conditioning as mentioned above.

But the mind is a very (very!) powerful thing.

As the gun went off for the 21k runners to start, I eased right into target pace in the first 3kms (about 6:50-ish per km). The plan would be to mimic my Oct 21k strategy by pacing myself in the first 16k then going for it on the last 5.

But my eagerness had other plans, especially after I took my first gel as early as km3 (first aid station). Other gels were taken at the km9 and km16 aid stations.

I improved pace, playing between 6:45-6:50 which was a far cry from my 7:00-ish pace last Oct for the first half of the race. By km13, I saw Dennis whiz pass by me (as expected based on the race times he posted from his HM races). It was good that I didn't give chase and opted to keep myself at bay with the pace range that I was at for fear of bonking in the latter kms.

Heart rate was amazingly low (at 135-145) from km1-15 as the cold weather and flat course helped me relax.

By km16 my heart rate eventually crept up in the 150s but I was still doing good pace wise. I knew I didn't have the long run preparation but I also knew that I had done 21k races many many times (although way wayyy in the past). My last 21k last Oct showed that I can still finish sub-2:30 if I willed it. 

This was the driving force that I kept telling myself (along with the hope that I can catch Dennis, but, for naught) as I drove home in the last 6kms of the race. The legs started to show a little bit of weakness but I was still able to keep pace, overtaking struggling 21k runners as I closed out the remaining kms. 

"This is your last race for the year," I said to myself, "Make it count! Come on!"

It was a battle to keep pace, although never in my mind did I think of stopping or walking. I was just hoping for a glimpse of the finish arc to keep my moral up but to no avail. Nevertheless, I kept my pace.

My Garmin beeped as I reached the 21st km. Still no sight of the finish arc.

21.3km. Still no sign. 

The race was supposedly for 21.3km so the thought that this may exceed further than that (22? 23 kms?) worried me. Still, I pushed on as I hoped that the organizers missed it only by a bit.

Alas, after 200 meters or so, I finally saw the arc. I made a sprint for it, overtaking another runner for good measure, with my Garmin stopped at 21.6kms upon crossing the line ---my longest run for the year (and possibly for the last 2 or 3 years!).

Garmin time clocked at 2:27:22 for the whole 21.6km distance although my TrainingPeaks app said I scored a PR for a half-marathon since my first use of it (2014) with a time of 2:24:04 (yey!). This was a big improvement (exactly 3 minutes and 13 seconds) from my Oct 21k race (yey again!).

This could've been a bigger improvement had I followed the long run training sked religiously and, more importantly, had I controlled myself from a lot of eating since October. Yup, lesson learned, but I will cherish this victory for now as a great year ender. :)