Sunday, September 20, 2009

Tourist in Jeju (II)

Joined a day tour group today to go around the Eastern side of Jeju Island (it's 2.7x Singapore). There was a Singaporean couple, as well as a girl working in Singapore. Had not been on a 'planned' tour for a long time, the experience was, ummm, adaptive.

Itinerary from Yeha Tour: East course:
1. Sangumburi - The only crater in Jeju located at ground level
2. Seong-eup Folk Village - Currently, more than one thousand and three hundred people live in the village and continue in old Jeju custom and tradition.
3. Seopjikoji - The best view in the Eastern area and the location of the popular
TV series 'All in'
4. Seongsan Ilchulbong(Sunrise Peak) - "A symbol of Jeju". It was registered as a World
Natural Heritage Site by UNESCO. (Enough time for trekking to the top is given.)
5. Manjanggul - The longest lava cave in the world. Registered as a World Natural Heritage Site
6. Mysterious Road - Cars without power appear to go uphill by themselves

Tour was well organized and on time. The manager who followed us spoke 3 languages rather fluently - Korean, Japanese & English. The group was a random mix of tourists from everywhere.

I enjoyed 1, 3-5 most, because they were natural heritage sites & allowed us to do some walking along scenic routes. Returned to the hotel & went for a seafood dinner buffet with CP. Lovely place by the Jungman yacht marina. Overdose on black pork & seafood. Think of all that calories & cholesterol! Oh dear...

Heading out to Seoul tomorrow. I just learnt that Korean Ironman is held annually in Jeju Island! Ahh.... could definitely consider coming to race! :)

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Tourist in Jeju (I)

Woke up early for a run. Had wanted to climb Mt Halla, the highest mountain in S.Korea located in Jeju, but was feeling a little sick, under-geared, and did not want to kill myself. Ran from my hotel to ICC and onto the Olle Route 8 behind. Passed the Jusangjeoli Rocks, and chanced upon a cluster of raw fish little eatery shops. I was the only weirdo running on the streets.... Did about a 1h 15min run, little discoveries along the way. :)

Had a quick breakfast and went with CP to join in a post-conference tour. The programme was arranged by a certain Mrs Kang - someone quite well known in Jeju - and included a meditation session in the Seogwipo Natural Recreation Forest, and a little trek to the Bubjungnak Observatory (760m) which gave a decent view of the coast, Mt Halla, and city.

Next we had a really late lunch at a place called the Traditional Restaurant. In addition to the usual spread of Korean kimchi appetizers, each diner was served an entire grilled mackeral. It was so fresh and succulent. Oh oooh.... I polished my til the bones. Delicious.

Then we took a leisurely walk around the Women's Diver Village. Mrs Kang hailed from a family of women diver. Her mother is a retired, and subsequently started a shelter for women & children, which she is now running. Mrs Kang herself recently qualified as a master diver. The women divers in Jeju are legendary for their amazing diving abilities, staying underwater without oxygen for up to 20min! We saw a group of boys swimming in a constructed pool filled with sea water. Really scenic.

The day ended late. It was almost 830pm by the time we returned to our hotel, for a programme that was scheduled to end at 430pm. It was a very different experience strolling slowly and not be rushing from site to site as I normally do on trips.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Short Run in Jeju

Went out at 7am for a run. Did not get too far as I got distracted by sights along the way. Climbed up a long flight of wooden steps to get onto some nicely constructed trail, which led to an observatory deck. I later realised that there were many many such decks around Jeju. The trails are part of the Jeju Olle trails - a series of well-marked walking routes that people could explore by themselves. There were 12 Olle routes which covered all the scenic and spots of interests on the island.

Even though the run time was brief, there were so many many rolling slopes that added some challenge to the run. They were somewhat like Desaru slopes, or Mandai (but steeper).

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Hazy Hill Intervals

Very hazy this evening. Could smell the smoke in the air! Running up the Telok Blangah hills was really a struggle - tired legs from last few trainings, and limited lungs-air! 5 sets of hills with rest in between. Not good.

1- 4:50min
2- 4:45
3- 4:40
4- 4:55
5- 4:40

Home to pack for trip. *headache* too much logistics....

Monday, September 14, 2009

Moderate Class

Tonight's class was 'heavily discounted', thanks to the Tri-factor-ers. But still, I found it tough. Must be the long training weekend, could not glide at all.

8x 50m of alternate kick, pulls, almost non-stop
8x 50m of palm drag, finger drag, fist drag

8x 50m - 1:09/ 1:36/ 1:07/ 1:09/ 1:09/ 1:08/ 1:12/ 1:11
8x 100m - 2:17/ 2:21/ 2:23/ 2:20/ 2:19/ 2:21/ 2:18/ 2:22
7x 100m - 2:25/ 2:24/ 2:31/ 2:26/ 2:29/ 2:22/ 2:23
8x 15m sprint

We all died....

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Baked Long Ride

I planned a long training ride today, target 140km. The guys kept complaining along the way of being 'tekkan-ed' by me. :( But they still rode on anyway. Yeah.

0 - 40km
Home to Mandai Shell - 10km
Mandai Shell - Seletar - Mandai Shell loop - 25km
Mandai Shell - Kranji Way coffeeshop - 5km
Stopped for food, the guys had breakfast. Distance = 40km

40 - 100km
Kranji Way - Neo Tiew - Jln Boon Lay - Junction of AYE & Jln Ahmad Ibrahim - 18km
Strong headwinds along the Lim Chu Kang cemetry stretch, I got dropped far behind...

Jln Ahmad Ibrahim - Tuas West Drive (last turn before Tuas checkpoint) - 10km
Headwind loop x 2 = 16km + 11km = 27km
(Tuas West Drive - Tuas South Ave 1 - Tuas South Ave 3 - 5km
Tuas South Ave 3 - Tuas Power Station - 3km)
Low on water and ate half a power-bar. Whew, enough of the strong winds.
Tuas South Ave 3 - Pioneer Road - Tuas Amenity Centre - 5km

There were new coffeeshops in the Amenity Centre, food! Had lunch and drinks before the ride home. Distance = 100km.

100 - 140km
Pioneer Rd (Tuas A. Centre) - Jln Buroh SPC - 5km
SPC - Jurong Pier Road - Jln Ahmad Ibrahim - 2km
Jln Ahmad Ibrahim - Jln Boon Lay - Neo Tiew - Kranji - Mandai Shell - 23km

There was a strong tailwind along Lim Chu Kang. We flew at 40-42kmh. Wheeee! Rode strongly in Neo Tiew area until the Kranji reservoir/ dam when the winds grew as dark clouds loomed. We were caught in a passing shower and sought shelter at a bus stop. The rain stopped after 10min or so, and we continued.

Parted company at Mandai, we cycled home. Still felt steady enough to cycle on. I was thinking of the IM race, and how on earth to run a 42km after the ride. Eeeks! *shudders*

Saturday, September 12, 2009


Attempted a long run in the trails. It was meant to be a pluck-flower pace, slow. The usual stretch to Rifle Range and Zhenghua Park. Legs were very tight, and had random sharp knee jabs. Oh no! Contemplated taking a cab back, but continued anyway. Thankfully the tightness went off after some DIY pounding, massaging, whatever.

The fun began after Zhenghua Park. Gary brought us through a trail that went by the central catchment area. A new sense of exploration took my mind off my legs and tiredness. We were running alongside the water. Brought a camera and we stopped for photos. :) It was a fairly technical trail, with lots of shallow and loose tree roots, and stumps everywhere. It was easy to trip over them, or be hit by a low hanging branch. The trail ended at the dam/ water treatment plant. Nice scenery! Many MTBrs stopped there and simply lazed on the grass. We took more photos. Haha... Continued the trail following the MTB trail. We ended up facing the BKE and crossed under it to the HDB flats & park connector. Blk 210 Petir Rd stared at us as we tried to figure out whether to turn left or right on the park connector. A helpful uncle pointed us the way towards Upp Bt Timah and we headed off. Saw Ricci and his group back at ZH Park. The additional trail section was approximately 5km.

My legs felt better on the way back and I was more energised. 2-3h for a warm up? Haha. It was a long long run with many stops along the way. We ran 28km in a superbly long duration. It was the trails afterall! Very important to enjoy the natural environment and not rush through it.

My pluck-flower-run became a plant-flower-trot, and at some points became a topo-hike with map reading. Fun!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Recovery Swim & Run

So tired this week, decided to swim & relax some muscles.

Set 1 - 12:51min
Set 2 - 12:55min
Set 3 - 13:01min
Total - 38min++

Tonight was the Newton shoe trial run. Heard and seen much about the shoes, but never tried them. Tried on a pair of Women's Stability Racer. Felt very light. Technique wise, I was surprised that I just eased into the shoes and running, no adjustments needed with the landing or posture etc. I only felt the difference when I stopped & was slightly off-balanced on the -4 french fries' on the soles. Hmmm.... The shoes probably made one more aware of one's running posture, there's no way you could slouch & run in those shoes. The lightness of the shoes contributed to speed.

Did the MF 10km loop, slow and relaxed. 1:03h. Recovery run. :)

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Tired Legs @ BT

Totally no form today. Too slow to even complete 4 sets. :(

S -
1- 2:28/ 2:00
2- 2:32/ 2:04
3- 2:55/ 2:13
4- 2:50

R -
1- 5:55/ 5:18
2- 4:31/ 5:04
3- 4:43/ 5:32
4- 4:57/ 5:32

JF -
1- 5:19/
2- 5:27/ 4:21
3- 5:26/


Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Telok Blangah 'Trot'

6x TB Hills. Tonight we tackled the steep end near the carpark, plus the usual loop.

1- 9:05min
2- 9:14
3- 9:28
4- 10:05
5- 9:55
6- 10:06


Monday, September 7, 2009

Bluff Swim

Coach said tonight would be easy swim (cos of Tri-factor race on Sunday), and we would get long rest in between sprints. Bluff! Hardly easy, and little rest!

After the drills....

8x 50m sprints (interspersed with drills like sight a few times, or heads-up swim):
58/ 1:01/ 1:02/ 1:08/ 1:06/ 1:02/ 1:01/ 1:05

3x 400m:
10:02/ 9:49/ 9:46

Medly of strokes.

Last sprint: 58sec

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Unfriendly Skies

Woke up to heavy rain. Wondered if sea swim was still on. Drove over nonetheless. True enough, the skies cleared up for our swim. The sea always felt 'cleaner' after the rain. We had a smaller swim course today because the safety patrol boat didn't show up.

Warmup - 2x 200m
Sets - 3x 300m x2
Then we did some simulation of beach start.

And the rain resumed.... Ditched the running plans and went for breakfast with some of the folks.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Mandai Loops

Had a good long ride today. Rode from home to meet up with the guys at Mandai Shell. Managed to complete 4 loops, each going to Seletar Rsvr. 124km in total.

Home - Mandai Shell - 10km
Shell - Seletar - Shell - 26km x4
Shell - Home - 10km

The 7-11 @ Shell was opened today. Did not realise that it (and the toilet) closed on Sundays. No wonder I never got to use the facilities. So it served a good pitstop point today.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Tired run

Legs were still heavy and draggy. Took forever to run the distance (Portsdown-MOE route). Walked, strolled, ran, whatever.... 14km felt like 20km.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Wobbly BT

Tired from yesterday's run. BT felt like a real climb today. :( In the end, managed a 4-5-3 set, 18kg. Uh.. ?? Gone case....

1- 2:21/ 1:58 (first set already so slow, bad omen)
2- 2:33/ 2:09
3- 2:45/ 2:19
4- 2:50/ 7:15

1- 5:06/ 4:00
2- 4:37/ 3:44
3- 4:35/ 4:09
4- 4:47/ 4:01
5- 5:20/ 9:04 (gone gone....)

1- 5:09/ 3:48
2- 5:14/ 3:30
3- 5:07/ 16:42

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

MF Loop PB

Had a superb run at MF Loop tonight, largely due to the perfectly cool weather and low humidity. It made all the difference and the run enjoyable. Target was 1h or 6 rounds. I managed 7 rounds, slightly past an hour.

1- 4:10/ 4:57min (9:07)
2- 4:26/ 5:08 (9:34)
3- 4:18/ 4:59 (9:17)
4- 4:18/ 4:51 (9:09)
5- 4:13/ 4:46 (8:59)
6- 4:12/ 4:46 (8:58)
7- 4:15/ 4:39 (8:54)
Total - 1:04hr

Wow! Loved the consistency. Never had such consistent timing before. Normally the ups were much long at 4:20 - 4:30 plus range, and the downs were 5:30.