Monday, 23 June 2014

2014 Cairns IRONMAN

Finally, back to "civilization" - no more gels, energy bars, electrolytes for a 
long while! ....

Our training buddies sent us off at the airport, giving us positive cheers and wise advices.  8pm Qantas overnight flight to Brisbane for transit to Cairns.
2 hours of transit time flew by as we had to move our over-sized baggage (bike boxes) from the international terminal at Brisbane to its domestic terminal. 
Jack and Newell Cairns Apartment was a good choice too. Having 2 en suite rooms and a common bath room means no fighting for the loo on race morning.  Best of all, it is a mere 5 mins walk to the city centre with all the pubs, supermarket and eateries. It is also a 5 mins walk to the finishing line and most importantly, pricing is reasonable and the apartment host is friendly too.
We arrived in Cairns on Thurs 9.30am. Checked in apartment and proceeded to collect our race pack, fixed up the bikes.  Shopping for groceries, planning our daily meals kept us busy for the next 3 days.

Whilst checking out bike and swim routes, the rainy, cold weather... strong head winds caught us off guards.  This is what we know of Cairns! Choppy seas with huge sea swells, and cold water freaked us out. Our first test swim in the open water was the most challenging one. Struggled to swim 100m from the shore seemed to have taken us forever.  The choppy seas and huge waves were just too much for us to handle.  

Hilly bike course with plenty of hairpin turns and switch backs..... steep down hills on slippery road conditions.... wind gusts of up to 40km/h whipping us sideways, head-on... DARN!  All these made our nerves cracked.

Race day
Had our breakfast at 4am then headed out to the coach pick up point in a rainy all night, wet and cold early morning.

Soil-fest, muddy conditions at bike transition.  Umbrellas knocking into one another.  All these just weren't the perfect start to a race day. Did a quick dip into the sea to warm up the nerves, said a few hellos and the honk went off.  We are not aiming for sub 1 hour swim, hence we stayed at the back of the pack and strolled into the sea. 

Fortunately, the sea was calmer than last 3 last days and temperature was just right for wet suit swim. But getting a few slaps and elbows from the over zealous competitors were still part of the Ironman swim fun.  

Bike was a tough as mentioned.  Headwinds, side winds, rains, wet and slippery roads with never ending switchbacks and hills - all so challenging.  We were lucky we completed the bike leg without any punctures.  Mentally, our last long ride at Sedili gave us some confidence in riding the rolling and steep hills.
Cold weather with continual rain made the marathon run even tougher. However cheers from the spectators kept us going. It was also the part of the race that we fought with our mind, spirit and body.  Determination and endurance were the key assets.

Yes we have all cross the finishing line with satisfaction!
Wee San, pain in the shin continued to build from the start of the bike leg all through the finish line.  Excruciating pain shooting up from the shin each time the right foot contacted the pedal or hit the ground.  Pain management and endurance got her through the day.

Esther, nervous?  Blur?  Over confident?  Not sure. Crisis management !  Ironman race number sticker gave way in the morning.  Left the special needs bag with windbreaker and bike bento box food with full load of calories all back in the apartment.  What else can be worst than timing chip gave way ?  "Do not take anything for granted" was the huge lesson.  Well, at least I enjoyed the journey and the race.

We are an IRONMAN !

We made many new friends who cheered us along our tough race course and many old friends who shared the same fuel, passion and love for the sport. Yes, it is a double crazy distance!  So what, if you called us crazy again and again...We are accompanied by more than 1,000 athletes doing this crazy sport with us.

This race could never be possible without the support of Kuan (our resident fantastic chef who can whipped up any food in any possible combinations), Edwin and Travis.  And never possible without the coaching of Shem Leong from Ironguides.  Special thanks to our training mates Dave and Sean who are always there for us... Lawrence who is always ready to suffer long distance rides with us... THANK YOU

The rest of the trip gone by so quickly with us having fun and putting on weight!

So, what's next?

Tuesday, 6 May 2014

Putrajaya 70.30

What doesn't kill us, make us stronger......
Pain, Disappointment, HOT and dam HOT is our experiences for Putrajaya 70.30.
Obviously we were over toasted (40 - 42 Degree C.... ) Many triathletes suffered from bad cramps and heat stroke while numbers of them were admitted to hospital.
Swim 1.9km - Manmade sheltered lake. A different swim start experience.
kayak along the swim line, numbers of big and smaller buoy along the way compensated the algae green water conditions and poor visibility.
However, wave start category has comfort us a little compared to mass start. At least it reduces the chances of getting run over or a slap from other swimmer.
Bike - 90km
Hilly, windy, hot and some poorly design cycling route is our conclusion.
Esther : Massive calf cramp from my 2nd cycling loop of cycling which lasted till the end of the race.Yes till the END of the RACE. Hot Weather,insufficient salt tab, hammering too soon were all the contribution to my cramp .... What can be worst then my precious last packet of gel flew off from my hand. Worst of all even my big chain ring also gave up on the conclusion...
Wee San : Nothing comes easy for me, focus on pacing, hydrating, were my main strategy. Yes it was painful but I did my best.
Running out for water at some water points was a nightmare, under such a weather condition. We did not expect this from a 70.3 IRONMAN race. Warm coke, warm 100+, NO water....unacceptable...
Well, what doesn't kill us, make us stronger...We completed the race....

A step closer to our A race and we will be more prepared this time round.
At least a photo with world champ Craig Alexander made us a happier athletes for that day....:)
Special thanks to Kuan who always stood by us ......

Wednesday, 9 April 2014

Adamo is the answer

Let's TRY it in this TRI race........

Adamo saddle is our solution to our triathlon bikes.

Transitioning from road bike to tri bike was a challenge to Esther. Totally different cycling dynamics, different sitting position, different muscle groups  used. All these were reasons that prevented Esther from switching over to a Tri bike for her A race.  

After much analysis from the team, convincing her and even getting a readily available Tri bike for her, Esther finally accepted the switch and embrace the new challenge of riding on the loaned Tri bike from Sean. A FUJI D6!

3 hours bike fit by our team mechanic Benson, followed by another 1 hour of saddle fit by Edwin from Elite Customs. Esther is all set!

Special thanks to the dedicated team, always so ready and supportive to meet our racing needs....

Wee San, Tri bike almost becoming white elephant after giving room for her new love....road bike.. Eventually, the hot red got to give way to this furious looking 2 wheels blackie for the long awaiting IRONMAN 

How ready are we ?? For this 70.3 Putrajaya IRONMAN on this coming Sunday 13 Apr 2014...We love to find out too..

In case you have not heard about Elite Customs.  Edwin carries a variety of Adamo saddles and does saddle fitting, which is rather un-heard from most local bike shops.  However there is no obligation to purchase the saddle if you find the fit uncomfortable.

Even the 'right' saddle would feel awkward in the wrong position. Edwin will fix the saddle with the proper tools like torque wrench etc in order to find the right saddle fit  for you.

There is also no  obliged to purchase the saddle if you find them uncomfortable. However, If you purchased a saddle from them and took it on a 20 km short ride, thereafter  realize that the saddle does not work out for you, they are more than happy to propose an exchange.  Currently, they carry 5 Brands of saddles. You should be able to find  the right one. 

Fix appointment with them now
Elite custom Singapore

for appointments between:

Tuesday - Thursday (1pm - 6pm)

Friday - Saturday (11am - 6pm)
Closed on Sundays, Mondays and Public Holidays. 
Tel: +65 6256 2028

Blk 2 Thomson Road,
Balestier Hill Shopping Center, #01-649
Singapore 320002

Signing off Wee San, Sean & Esther

Friday, 28 March 2014

Commando or undies ??

Below article is under PG.......

Do u wear your undies underneath your triathlon tights or do you prefer to go commando?
Some complain about hygiene going commando; whilst others comment about abrasions, fear of infection caused by trapped heat and bacteria due to long hours on the saddle. Some even complain about the VPL (visible panty lines!), which may distract cyclists drafting closely behind us!

Vanity over comfort.  Or comfort over vanity? Only you have the answer.
There are lots of discussion about different types of underwear for sport. Commonly purchased are perhaps the cotton ones or those seamless ones to prevent the oh-so-unsightly VPL.

Maybe some triathletes prefer to go commando as there is always some padding for cycling or triathlon tights and take quick shower after each training session.

Keep it to yourself if you are wearing underwear under your training suit.  It's just doesn't sound comfortable and stylish to us.

So what do you think?  Underwear or no underwear?

Please do not stare at that spot when you see someone running or cycling past you!

Wednesday, 12 March 2014

Jorney to IRONMAN

.....3.8km Swim, 180km Bike & 42.195km Run is our goal...and yes it coming....

OMG ..We met a friend over the week, curiously he asked " Are you guys still racing "?? 

Busy training is the main reason we constipating our number "100" POST
1 more months to half ironman Putrujaya and 3 more months to Cairns Ironman... Are you feeling the stress as much as us? Are we on the right path ?? Over Trained  or Under Trained ?? We should be able to find out in 1 month time...... 

As the race days draw closer, mental stress and physical stress kick in. Having to juggle work, family, early hours training, pain, endurance, sickness...  Bla Bla Bla....
Undoubtly, immunity will naturally be lower, causing us to fall sick easier than before.  We just have to cut back a little in our training when not feeling well and allow the body to recover before we chiong again...

Perhaps it is a necessary journey for most triathletes as our bodies adjust and adapt to the increased training volume.

Our swim mileage has increased, cycling mileage also as we build up to 3hrs every Saturday and Sunday long run has gotten longer!

Supplements like vitamin c, Omega 3 are necessary during this training season.  Fruits, vegetables and plenty of water too! Watching what goes into our mouth is another mission.
See you soon .... We promise ....The 3 triathletes

Signing off Wee San, Sean & Esther ....cheers

Monday, 27 January 2014

Saddle discomfort

Saddle discomfort, abrasion, numbness, pain.... Is this the universe pain that all cyclists need to go through?

We don't know about you but we went through it!

Newbies may think some form of discomfort and genital pain is part of the sport, therefore tolerated it, live with the pain and keeping quiet as afraid of embarrassment or may not quite sure how to relate the pain to others especially for the ladies!

Gentlemen and especially ladies, don't be shy to talk about it.  Experiencing this pain is normal.  Talk to a experienced cyclists or even a bike mechanic, as they may be able to solve your problem. 
Most of the time, discomfort can be reduced by getting a bike fit or a saddle fit and your  so-called "permanent" pain will be lifted!

Saddle is a very individual piece of equipment. Although our butt sizes may look similar, but our cycling postures, sitting postures  are all different! Therefore, trying out various saddles to find the one that best suits you.

Please also do not try to replace your tri bike saddle with your road bike saddle as both bike fit dynamics are totally different.

Visit a bike shop and share your pain with them. Elite Custom provides saddle fits. They will watch your cycling posture, measure your hip bone and let you try a few saddles.  Alternatively, you can trial and error on the saddles recommended by your local bike shops.  Either way, finding the saddle that suits you is so important!
Get your saddle fit done right away!


Wednesday, 15 January 2014

2013 reflection

2013 - a year of triumphs, or a year of multiple setbacks?

Had you persisted, remained focused in your daily challenges?  What about your training front?

Do you agree that life is like running a race; it needs lots of discipline, unwavering focuses, persistence, determination and motivation... and the list goes on.  Isn't that attitude the bottomline?  2014.  Let's start this year right!  Set a few SMART goals, and evaluate it mid year.

Credit to Winnie & Arthur

Keeping that same resolutions year in year out because you had not taken steps to achieve them, is not SMART at all.  Spend some time, set the SMART goals to kick start / reset our motivations!

For us, year 2013 was quiet.  We ran in the Phuket half marathon in June and participated in the Nusajaya triathlon to satisfy our swim-bike-run 'cravings'.  First half of last year was spent mainly on group cycling, whilst second half was spent focusing on strength and power training.  Different approach to preparing our A race - Cairns IRONMAN .  All these preparations and changes in training methods are all to challenge ourselves and not anyone else!  We are working towards achieving our personal bests; not yours!

We are grateful to the great friends we have, always encouraging, always supportive, always motivating, and accept and love us the way we are.

Moving into a new 2014, we strive to continue to do our best at work,  with our loves ones at home, with our friends, serve the community. Of course, to achieve our Personal Best for our IRONMAN in June and deliver interesting articles for our readers....

Most importantly, be thankful and grateful and always racing our best.
Be strong and resilient in all circumstances.

Life is not all about pictures taking but a series of video clips...

                                  Wee San            Sean                    Esther 

See you in our next race and article cheers

Tuesday, 24 December 2013

X'mas recovery party

 Christmas is more than just giving and receiving gifts, decorating the Christmas tree and feasting, but also a season and spirit of forgiving, loving, caring, kindness, its hope that is reborn again... 

                            sweet friendship that brightens our year ... 

A recovery session fitting right into our party.  What a FUN X'mas recovery party!

Well, we may not train like a pro athlete, for sure we recovered like one...

Expressing your love by getting a X'mas gift or new year gift for your training mates? Vitamin C, Omega supplements or homemade granola?

Granola bar seems to be the most popular snacks!  Guess what?  Those in Esther's favorite list will receive a jar of home-made healthy granola!  Not only does it looks good, it tastes yummy too! 

Here is our Xmas recipes to all our readers...

Mix and stir well in a bowl (portion for 2 small jars)
1. 6 scoops of roll oats (choose bigger size oats, avoid instant and quick cook oats)
2. 1/2 tablespoon of brown sugar
3. 1 packet of raisins
4. 1/2 teaspoon of grounded cinnamon
5. A pinch of sea salt
6. 3 scoops of cut almonds

Mix and stir well in a hot pot till you see bubble
1. One tablespoon of olive oil
2. 3 tablespoons of honey
 (portion depending on individual sweet buds)

3.Mix all the dry ingredients into the hot pan and stir well till evenly coated
4.Lay them on a baking pan for 1 hr in a preheated oven.
5.Toss them at 1/2 hr internal  to achieve evenly baked color.  Avoid tossing too often to avoid loose granola.

Let it cool down for an hour and packed them.  Consume them within a month.

Merry Xmas & a Happy New Year to all our readers. May you continue to achieve your PBs in 2014. Continue to love, care and bless one another. May 2014 be the best year yet to be for you and us....
See you in 2014....
Signing off from the3triathletes , Esther, Sean & Wee San.