Saturday, 19 March 2011

Run with me for Japan - 25th March

To raise funds towards disaster relief in Japan, I will be hoping to complete the longest run I've ever done running 1.4km laps around the Happy Valley Racecourse, this Friday 25th March. Sponsor me for every lap that I run... or come run with me.

More details to follow...


I promised you this... and I also wanted to take a look at all my shoes together :)

In Chronological order (left to right, top row first):
(Not shown) Mizuno Precision – long retired. A pair I bought even before
running ever came to mind. They turned out to be a fantastic first pair of
shoes, guess light performance shoes worked even before I knew any

Asics Kayano 15 – bought in 2009 and I retired them from running last
year. One of my favorites still, even though I have since evolved into
lighter shoes. They saw me through my first ‘real’ (sustained) year of
running and I probably wore them at my first 10k in 2009 (though I can’t
be sure). Had issues with my right groin during my time with this pair of
shoes, although by the time this improved (it has never really gone away
though – I still have tightness after tough sessions, both speed and
longs), I wasn’t sure if this was down to getting orthotics, simply
getting stronger or if it ever had anything to do with my shoes in the
first place (did I have pain before I even wore these shoes? I should look
back on my journals).

New Balance 1225 – I bought this in Canada in summer 2010 as my Kayanos
needed replacing. Shoe purchase lesson number 1 – if something works,
don’t buy something else on impulse. The specialty shop in Toronto did not
have the new Kayanos in my size so I somehow ended up with NBs instead. I
don’t recall trying on much else either (it was past their closing time).
I’m still running in these, but have never really felt that they are
‘right’ for me though I’m not entirely sure why – too wide upfront (though
I feel fine with barefoot/minimalist options now that are deliberately
wide up front), too much heel drop (this definitely is part of it as my
strike is much mid-heel versus my usual mid-forefoot). Having said that,
it’s fine for most of my easy runs and gym work. I estimate that I’ve
already run over 600km in these already, so they are on their final legs

Adistar Salvation – mistake mistake mistake. Lesson number 2 – don’t buy
something mainly because it’s on sale. This was cheap but so wrong for me
- bulky, constricting, clumsy, also with a significant heel drop. This is
one of those shoes that demonstrates why the trend towards more fitted and
cushioned running shoes is just biomechanically wrong – I feel all the
shock goes up my lower legs and knees with this shoe. I’ve only run in it
less than 10 times and now have to think of another use for it, boo what a

Mizuno LSD – a move back towards my roots. I bought this late Sept 2010 in
Mongkok. I’ve run a lot in this and still using it for most of my long
runs and speed/tempo sessions. A great shoe and one that I’ve been very
comfortable with- I ran all of my last 3 races in them (NB 10k, Unicef
half and Clearwater Bay 10k). Just a tad heavier than the Precisions, but
lighter than all the others. My only complaint is that the sole hasn’t
lasted as well as I would like. I should still have another 3-6 months to
go with these.

The two pairs in the bottom row are my new additions - NB Minimus Trail and my Asics Gel DS Sky Speed. I've worn the Minimus twice now, once for a short spin outdoors on road and yesterday for a tempo session on the treadmill. So far so good! The Sky Speeds I am going to save until I can retire one of my other pairs, since I'm still running with my NB 1225's and the Mizunos.

As you can tell, I'm not much of a brand-loyalist and if anything, I'm quite determined to give everything a try at least once. I tried on the Saucony Kinvara on my recent shopping trip, and I've been keen to test out the Newtons as well. Having said that, I am finding that Asics and Mizunos are still my go-to brands - perhaps it's the more Asian-friendly cut or just because I've grown used to how they feel (I've run the most in those 2 brands)... my sense is that I'll be sticking with these in the future, with the only departures being to 'test' out new trends such as the minimalist range of other brands.

So here's another look! :)

Thursday, 17 March 2011

Backed up...

So I actually have so much to update you on... heck, i have so much to update ME on! I have a couple of entries that I simply haven't had time to tidy up and put on here. So instead of waiting for it all to come together, let me do what I can now...

My thought this morning - life and this year have gotten ahead of me. It's busier and more stressful at work these days, but I have also forgotten to keep up with some simple practices that can help me be more mindful... I'm looking forward to a 'review weekend' and the resumption of my morning 'quiet time' to start with! Have more trips planned over the next few months, and traveling does put a spanner in the works... but hey, life is good nonetheless!

Here's what I wrote while waiting for my flight home from LAX, 13th March 2011:

I’ve had a wonderful week here in Pasadena. The sun was shining, and yes, life can be just that simple! Joy is irrepressible when light, space and some nature (I could see the San Gabriel Mountains!) surrounds you. I loved that what little I saw of LA exuded a laid back, content air.

The work meetings went well and I loved getting to know my colleagues from around the globe. I managed to run/work out more than I expected, clocking 30km for a relatively light week. With the abundance of sweets/food on offer, as well as PMS, I caved with regards to watching my diet – but hey, what’s a few extra (giant) cookies and desserts in the bigger scheme of things?

Today capped it off very nicely – I woke at 8am and went out for a run. I started at the Westin, heading out to the Rose Bowl, where I did a couple of rounds before heading back. After a quick shower and breakfast, I hit the streets to do some shopping. I will be going home laden with more running goodies – new shoes (YAY!!! Asics Gel DS Sky Speed and NB Minimus trail), Skins compression calf socks (white and in extra small size, which I can’t get in HK), another pair of shorts and panties from Lululemon (I just could not resist, it’s like a obsession – I HAVE TO visit a Lululemon when I am travelling and seem to always leave with shorts and panties!). I also went on a small spree in Abercrombie & Fitch… getting all ready for the summer with shorts, a bikini and a couple of shirts thrown in.

I didn’t miss Hong Kong at all this week, which surprises me still.

Going off on a tangent – this was really supposed to be about my trip to Southern California – I thought it would be cool to show you my range of running shoes. The good, the bad and the ugly…

(to be continued...)