20 February 2011

Updates - Race Schedules 2011

I have done some updates to my race schedule. Have included both running and cycling events.

18 January 2011

HK 100 Ultra

It has been while since i have rave and given thumbs up to any race event. HK100 is certainly one of these events. Right from the organizers (Steve and Janet) down to the volunteers, each and every one of them displayed professionalism and supportiveness. I believed most of the Singapore participants agreed with me. 

So what is this HK 100 Ultra.....
The Vibram ® Hong Kong 100 is an ultra endurance trail race that takes place on the 
weekend of 15 to 16 January 2011. The 100 km run starts in Pak Tam Chung on the 
Sai Kung Peninsula and covers some of the most beautiful scenery in Hong Kong, 
including remote and unspoilt beaches, ancient forests, nature trails, reservoirs and 
steep hills. The course is based around Hong Kong’s famous Maclehose Trail, but 
with some diversions to ensure that runners spend more time in its most scenic 
sections, as well as finishing with the descent from Hong Kong’s highest peak 
(Tai Mo Shan). The course involves a cumulative elevation gain of over 4,500 meters. 
This is a unique, challenging and beautiful run for the trail racing enthusiast and a 
chance to take part in an unforgettable event. Join us and make some memories!
The maximum time allowed to complete the 100Km course is 32 hours.

The Vibram HK 100 is a qualifying race for the famous Western States 100 to be held 
in 2012, as well as UTMB 2012 and the Comrades Marathon! 

I was delighted that i was part of this inaugural trail running event in HK. Most wonderful 
was to complete in a good personal timing (18:49hrs). Again, well done to the 
organisers / friend (Steve, Janet and May).  

6 January 2011

Races in 2011

I thought i should update this blog. It's been ages since i come in here. I have put in some of the races i plan or hope to do in this year. The biggest one, is the Western States 100. Although i have offically qualified to participate, i am still uncertain whether i can go over. Will just have to wait and see in the next 2-3 months' time.

Another thing that been going on my mind for a while, is to do an sub 3 hr marathon. I have been wanting to crack this but i have not tell myself when and where. Somehow, i feel this year should be the time to attempt it. Will be hoping to search online for some training programs to follow or ask those who have done it before for advice.

Wish me luck!

8 May 2010

F1 Nature Run 2010

Recently i did this event that was organised by F1 Runners. Part of the race was to showcase the VFF shoes in this trail event. Clarence and myself were priviledged to run this event. After the run, we were present at the VFF booth to provide our little support. Was also glad to see friends e.g. Mohan who was wearing yellow jersey and made new ones (they were wearing VFF too).

12 March 2010

OCBC Cycle 2010 - Pictures

Here are some pictures taken during last weekend OCBC Cycle. Overall, it was an enjoyable and smooth race. To our amazement, we did well as a team due over the following facts

(1) We only had 2-3 training rides
(2) First outing as a complete team
(3) Kah Shin's first cycling race
(4) 3 out of 4 were using sports shoes instead of clips-on

Nevertheless, we managed to clock 1:09hrs and stayed as group throughout the 40km. I believed our photo crossing the finish line, showed it all why we are a team!

5 March 2010

Race Across America

Lately i have been thinking of doing an ultra event. However, it is not the normal ultra running event that i have been doing for the past 2 years.

The urge to test my physical limits in this area, was tempting! I have checked that no Singaporeans had ever done it before. Hmm.. looks promising to attempt to be the first to try it.

Not to keep in suspense, this ultra event is none other than the Race Across America. It is a transcontinental bicycle race starting on the west coast and finishing on the east coast. The race covers 3000 miles across the Rockies, the heartland of America, and finally the Appalachians. It continues to stands as one the toughest events in the world and a tribute to human endurance.

I have asked my "partner in crime", Lam if he is interested to do 2 man team. Anyway, preparation for this event is not easy as support crews and certain logistic are mandatory. The earliest date to start dreaming is only Year 2011 onwards. 

Til then, akan datang....

OCBC Cycle 2010

Something different for a change........

For the past 2 years, running has been my core sports. I have spent time training and racing in running events. Come this Sunday, i will be participating in a cycling event with some of my friends. We have been some easy trainings such as LCK area, Mandai area and the last one was a trip to Batam.

I am looking forward to this. The last time i cycled in a race, was during Ironman Switzerland in 2007.

Not expecting anything, but to enjoy and complete the race safely!

6 February 2010

Razor TV Interview on Barefoot Running

Recently, three of us (Barefoot Pua, Uncle Hock Kian and myself) did an interview with Razor TV. Check this out.

Barefoot Running Part 1

Barefoot Running Part 2

Barefoot Running Part 3

Barefoot Running Part 4

Barefoot Running Part 5

Enjoy folks!

20 January 2010

Registration Confirmation - UTMB@2010

I received the email from UTMB organizer that i am selected to run in this year Ultra Trail du Mont Blanc again. This is definitely a redemption for me and i will be looking forward (of course, training hard..) to this mega event once again. I hoped the valuable "lessons" and experience learnt last year, will help me in this year's preparation. Will be doing lots of hill / stairs workout, using the trekking poles (time to invest in good ones) and refueling myself during training.

One hesitation for me, is whether to run this race in Vibram Fivefingers (which i have been used to) or to go back to trail shoes. < will be posting the latest trail shoe i got from HK>. I have to make the decision in the next 2-3 months.

Also glad that Steven has been accepted in this race as well. Will be awaiting to hear the news from Kah Shin and Clarence.

3 January 2010

Reflections - 2009

Year 2009 has passed quickly. Reflecting back, it has been a great year in my personal life and work. I am thankful that both of my children are growing well and healthy. Jayden has graduated from kindergarden and will be going on to Pri 1 in 2010. We are happy to hear that he is very well-liked in Jurong Calvary Kindergarden. Our wish is that he will enjoy his experience in Pri 1, do well for all his assessment and continue to be liked by his teachers and peers. As for Maygane, she will be also joining another new nursery school, Centre of New Life. This year will be a foundation year for her and we will be enrolling her in JCK in Year 2011. 

As for Sharmaine, we thanked God that she "pull" through this year being the HOD for Mother Tongue Department. After serious considerations and prayers, she has decided to step down to be the subject head instead. We hope that 2010 will continue to be a fruitful year in her work. 

For myself, i had another promotion to JG5 within one year. I am thankful for the many opportunities in my work, although i had to juggle with different tasks, often challenging and time-demanding. For 2010, i will still be doing the same tasks as i have done. I have to think of ways to do it better. I may also move on to the Turnaround project. 

In terms of my sports, i had a wonderful time competing alongside with my close friends. The major disappointment was the DNF at 150km in Ultra Trail Du Mont Blanc. Lessons were learnt and valued. I will be returning to UTMB in 2010 again. Another wonderful experience i have done in Q4 2009, was to embark on barefoot running and/or minimalist running (in VFF). I have nothing but full of praise for barefoot running. I believed in it so much that in fact, i will be doing a few races in barefoot running for 2010.

To end off this year, was to compete in a charity event, LTAW and came back as first team. 

Like previous years, i will be planning and updating on the races i will be embarking for 2010. Stay tuned.

23 December 2009

Sundown Ultra Marathon

I have decided to run the Sundown Ultra on 29 May 2010. I hope to do a good timing next year. Any time under 10hrs will be my target. Anything lower than that, will be a bonus. 

As of now, i will be running in VFF although i may go total barefoot for half of the race. 

21 December 2009

218km (Run Round Singapore) footrace

Yes, believe it or not. NTU is going to organise a 218km footrace in 27-28 March 2010.  They already have my name for this event. I will provide more details when i have it.

Update: I have the route details. However, i shall not post it here yet till i have obtained certain confirmation from the organiser.

Lets Take A Walk 2009, A charity even that raised funds & awareness for Boys' Town and Raleigh Society

When you put guys like this in a 50km WALK, their qualities seem to come out of their every pore. Fortunately, this is a walking event, otherwise they could have buried me alive!

100km walk started half hour earlier. Team Vibram Five lead the 50km pack from the very beginning. Eventually we caught up with most if not all the 100km teams in front. Heavy rains must have dampened the spirit of the event. As we progress closer to 40km, we must have probably put all the 100km teams behind us. Frankly, from here on I felt no challenge. We must have pushed our self too fast.

We settled down for a well deserved Macdonald break besides International Plaza. That 5 stooges sitting outside Macdonald on the floor eating away like never been eating for years. That must be the best Macdonald outlet we ever visited. While people insides may take hours to finish their Mac meals, it took just seconds to swallow two Mac in each of us. It just melt away!

As we move forward, I have never found myself so lonely in front. Fortunately, we are a team, otherwise I wouldn't want to play on. I'd be in a cab home. So, it isn't with much aplomb and surprise that Team Vibram came in number one eventually. Nevertheless, it is a sweet finishing. And personally for me, achieving a 9hr40 in a 50km walk is truly remarkable. More so that we are in VFF barefoot. It is something that I can savour for a long time to come.

And having that STEVEN WONG with a team of young and strong athletes may look a total misfit in every sense. Hey...this is a walking event you know J I think I am coping well and there is no reason to fault me, haha.

Chris, Johnson, Kah Shin, Bernard

It is an opportunity of a life time to be amongst you bros as a team. We are of different breed. You are very much a runner and on the contrary, walking is my forte. It is totally a different sport. Nonetheless, I hope you have enjoyed this gruelling walk as much as I do. As a team, we gel well. No yakking. No hair pulling brawl and no single instant of flaring tempers. The camaraderie amongst us provide an amiable platform to integrate with hearty chats and laughter that ruled the way. Man, this is a best team I ever had! Xmas has never been so early and wonderful. Have a good rest and recovery bro!

Ahtapon, Elaine and Chin, Anne,

Many thanks to you for keeping us company on certain segment of route. Your walk with us gave us the boost that is much needed in such an endurance event. Thanks for all the pictures. Special thanks to Ahtapon who tag along with heavy bags of foods and drinks. That 30km segment that you walk with us are deeply appreciated. And aside to Elaine, how we wish that you can stay with us throughout. That way, I think sub 9 could be achievable J

Nick, Pauline,

Thanks again for the product sponsor. We were a little ambitious in doing a VFF barefoot without any prior training with it. I do agreed that it could have been much easier if we could have gradually built to embrace it. We are nonetheless proud to have achieved this hard feat. Personally I find it much easier to walk with VFF in a soaked wet environment. On top of all this, it does helps in strengthening my calf and sole.

Sok Hong,

We are proud to don Nature Valley colour. Going green as a team really boost in us a strong identity that attract attention. Importantly, it relates well with green environment, the much talk about Copenhagen summit currently. And as usual your NV bars has always been our saviour to stretch our distance. 

And to All,

And so, another endurance event has come and gone. You people has always been an inspiration and motivation that kept my lifestyle active and refreshing. For now, let's not talk about sports. Let us get back to our love ones for a good Christmas and welcome the 2010. May 2010 brings you better health, fitness and many more memorable events. On behalf of Team Vibram Five, I wish one and all a MERRY MERRY CHRISTMAS.

Steven Wong
Team Vibram Five

12 December 2009

Standard Chartered Marathon 2009 Result

Full Marathon
December 6th, 2009
26470 / M2529

3h:44m:50s (gun) / 3h:37m:47s (net)

Yup, it is really me and not Alex Toh. As i did not registered for the SCM, i was running under Alex Toh's name. To Alex out there, thank you. You are ranked 218 out of the entire field, 114th out of local category and 30th in your age group.

30 November 2009

MR25 Ultra Marathon

The last event of the year. What a way to end it, by running this ultra trail event at home ground. Looking forward to this. It will be a time of celebration with friends and fellow runners.

For more details, visit http://www.mr25.org.sg

Vibram Five Fellas

I am excited about the upcoming event, Let's Take A Walk. Our team has been finalized and we will be in Vibram Fivefingers gear.

23 November 2009

Let's Take A Walk

I am looking forward to this event. I missed it last year due to a Church Retreat in Batam. The plan was to do the 100km extreme walk. However, the team decided to opt for the 50km power walk as a recovery and fun event. It will be fun especially we have Christian and Johnson in the team.

Though we are taking it easy, do not count us out!

10 November 2009

New Balance Real Run

I finished the NB 10km Real Run on Sunday at the Changi Exhibition Centre. My chip time was 50:20 and net time was 51:02. Of course, i did the event in Vibram and hydration bag. I found the race interesting as we had to tranverse through 3 types of terrain - trail 4km, sand 0.6km and finally tarmac 5.4km.

After the event, i did another 2-3km back to CP 6 and i have all the weird stares from the 10km runners who were still running. Overall, it is an event worth considering to do again.

My right eye is swollen!

My right eye went through a minor surgery yesterday to remove a blocked gland at the upper eyelid. It has been nagging for the past 3 weeks and finally made the decision to remove it totally. The surgery took about 5 minutes with LA being administered to my eye. Side effect is swollen and bruised eyed for next 1 - 2 weeks.

Additional bad news is that i do not have perfect eyesight anymore. My astigmatism is back.. Sigh.... wasted all my money on the lasik two years ago. Good news was that i have no retinal detechment although i have a few "floaters" (its normal according to my doctor).

6 November 2009

TNF 100km Solo in Vibram

A picture of me in the Vibram KSO