Writing to the Next Level?

Aside from being a blogger, I’ve been given a lot of different labels in my freelance job in sports events – social media manager, digital media consultant, PR coordinator, crisis manager. All of these tasks I believe I embraced and performed with passion. It is after all, a “job that feels not like a job” for me. 

This year I have been asked to write Press Releases (PR) for a number of times for various big events. Each time that I was, I always ask myself – “Why me?”, “Will I do good enough?”. I will usually end up saying “yes” to writing because a friend once told me – “You wouldn’t know of the answer to your questions unless you try.”

So write the PRs I did, never even trying to find out if each one made it to print or have been included in published online magazines or blog posts. It never seemed to matter to me at that time as having being able to write something acceptable to others feels like an accomplishment already. It has always been that way until today, when I got this:

the BGC Cycle Phils post-event release on today's Philippine Star newspaper the story and photo captions of which were written by me :)

the BGC Cycle Phils post-event release on today’s Philippine Star newspaper the story and photo captions of which were written by me 🙂

here is a digital copy :)

here is a digital copy 🙂

My very own write-up saw print in a major news broadsheet in the country! It doesn’t have my name on it and nobody could have known that I wrote it but it gives me a different kind of accomplishment. I am no writer but look, the words I carefully pieced together is there in the newspaper. I am silently happy. Giddy and happy. 🙂 

Thank you P for always asking me to do or try something new. Even when I think I can’t you always believed that I can. Achieved! 🙂

Now should I add another item to my list of work skills?

Ciao!

P.S.
I have been so preoccupied with a lot of things in the past but can I now just say that I missed blogging and sharing event updates here? I’ll be back soon, promise!

Thank You 2011!

Happy New Year everyone! 

The second day of the year 2012 is now about to end in a couple of hours and here I am finally able to sit down and contemplate about the year that was – 2011. 

The past year opened a slew of opportunities for me – career-wise and in almost every aspect of my life. Even my running blog and my continuing stint with RunRio, Inc. opened up a lot of new and exciting things for me. Everything about it gave me a tough time too, as I have to carefully balance my time to be able to do all these things and still have enough quality time left for family.

Through all these, I am so truly thankful as the benefits I received far outweighed the challenges and disappointments. Late as it may seem, I would like to give my deepest gratitude and sincerest Thanks to:

1. All of you who unselfishly took time to visit my blog and read my posts.

2. To my fellow runner-bloggers whom I have just gotten to know in 2011 and have thankfully become my chums in the process. You guys have increased my not-so big population of friends. 🙂

3. To my runner-friends who never failed to remind me that I should be on my feet – running,  and not just working my a*s off in the office or in the races.

4. To the running gear suppliers/brands who with full confidence provided me samples of their products for me to try-out and provide feedback on. 

5. To my race-organizer friends who believed that me, my skills and my blog can be helpful in spreading word about the races they are holding.

6. To my friends at RunRio, Inc. for formally welcoming me as part of the RunRio family (albeit, on a “part-time” capacity).

7. To Princess Galura who gave me my first ever break in “digital media consulting”. You know that I learned (and is continuously learning) a lot from you!

8. Lastly, I would like to thank all of you runners for being such an inspiration. Everytime I see one person run, I always never fail to feel so glad that there is yet another person who finally decided to get off that couch and lead an active lifestyle. I will always be in support of all of you in whatever capacity I may be able to do so.

With all these thankfulness is my fervent wish to be able to do more running this year. Hopefully, as work life gets to be more manageable and the digital media tasks becomes more stable, I will be able to seriously devote more time to what I have originally have been here for – to RUN.

Happy 2012 everyone and I look forward to running with all of you soon! 🙂

Of Running and NOAH Financials

One of the things I like about running is how it instills and reinforces the virtue of discipline and patience in me. Fact is, I can even fully apply it to my everyday activities – may it be in family or work-life.

I haven’t been able to train religiously in running because the call of work duties have been so high lately. But just like in running, anything you put your time and heart into it, coupled with some discipline and patience, good results will definitely come out of it.

Just now, I am really just so glad to say that whatever time I wasn’t able to put into running produced good results in the work-front.

Our company have been busy assisting its Large Taxpayer clients in receiving the BIR-Certification in line with their application for a Computerized Accounting System.

Yey! Folks, you may not be able to relate but our software product – the NOAH Financial Business Application was the system used by our large taxpaying clients to achieve compliance and eventual certification.

And who will not be proud? I am! It is as if I have completed a full marathon at work!

So here is a shout-out to all of you who may be working in a Large Taxpaying Company and is in need of a Computerized Accounting System for accreditation by the BIR, NOAH is definitely the right system for you.

Yes I am bragging here but believe me folks, this is all worth it. 😉

Back on the Run!

For over a year now, whenever I am asked why I haven’t been engaging in both my favorite sports, I will always say that I am on a “running and mtbiking semi-retirement”. My answer I would later on realize, sounded like running and mtbiking were duties which I have to perform instead of my favorite means of recreation. Quite disappointing of me eh? True!

Luckily, I have friends who did not tire of “hounding” me as to when I would get my act together and lace-up (Thank God for friends! XOXO to you all!). So that is why, when I found that work allowed more flexibility on my time, I immediately got in-touch with Coach John Lozada (from Coach Rio’s coaching staff) to schedule my training sessions.

happy to be back! 😉

Finally last Monday, I was figuratively and literally “back on track”. At exactly 6pm, I was there at the ULTRA Track Oval, ready for my comeback running training session. My favorite training ground hasn’t changed much, although I would have to say kudos to the administrators, the female changing rooms already have decent shower cubicles – with DOORS!

It was back to square one for me. I did one lap of walking while waiting for Coach John to arrive, happily observing and mentally taking note that there were a good number of runners training, considering that it was a Monday. Back then, Mondays are lean days for the oval but then again, the running boom have changed all that. 

When my soft-spoken, 2001 SEA Games 800m gold-medalist and 2002 Philippine record-holder for the 800m run coach arrived, we immediately went on with my warm-up activity – a 3-lap run/jog around the oval. Mediocre right? Not for me! With a considerable percentage of my former endurance and strength lost, not to mention my please-dont-ask-how-many-i-did-not-keep-track-anymore excess weight gained, the 1.2km warm-up run was enough to tire me that I was hoping for training to finish already. 😛

But wait, there’s more! The dynamic stretching exercises and drills which we have been used to doing in the past, I almost entirely forgot – and that includes how to balance! And how about, you might ask, my main training activity – my “main event”? Oh it was an easy 100m run x 100m jog x 5 laps intervals and an easier 100m run x 100m walk x 3 laps intervals. Easy, easier? I would have to say, it was fine. It wasn’t easy but it wasn’t difficult either.

During the intervals, I realized that a lot of things will play on my head – i will feel pain here, there and everywhere as if making me decide to quit. Happily, I went to training with a firm resolve so whatever threat these superficial pains pose on me, I was able to quickly dispel. Mind over matter folks!

The hardest part of the training will have to be the core exercises! I have grown an unwanted belly bulge – one which can be mistaken as if I am still about three to four months pregnant (i think!), reason why doing all core exercises were a nightmare! It was so hard that I even went on reminding myself why I wanted to do it again in the first place. Yes it was a necessity for me, health-wise but I also know deep inside that it was something that I have always really wanted to do. I somehow just got lost along the way.

The best part of the session will have to be, hands down, the stretching part. During stretching, I learned that with all that I lost, I somehow was able to retain much of my flexibility. It made me feel better knowing that not all that I previously built and worked-out for went down the drain.

I had training session  number 2 with Coach John last Wednesday at BGC with my whole body – especially my hamstrings and calves, still sore from the previous session. Naturally, this session was better than the first – way better as I was able to run straight for 35 minutes without stopping to walk. I was even able to complete it with more energy to spare!

Coach John have already drawn-up a goal for me to keep me focused on my training. I am not totally fixated on the goal, what I really wanted to do now is to run whenever I have the time to do so. Training session number 3 will have to be an “assignment” since I will need to do it on my own (Coach John has “head marshall” duties for the Milo Regional Elim Races)and will surely be a great challenge, discipline-wise, for me.

So folks, that was kulitrunner me, trying to get back on the right track to running. I am so far from my old running self but I know with small “baby steps” (no grand goals yet!) getting “there” will not be so much of a difficult eventuality. After all, I and running have a lot of catching-up to do.

And while I am at it, I am seriously thinking of taking my mtbike for a tune-up. Who knows, I might have to courage finally to go back to riding the trail too, one of these days.

Cheers! 😉

It is about time we “police” each other

There are a lot of factors which runners can check to measure a foot race’s success or failure – flawless pre-race activities including registration, race kit claiming, world-class race execution and exciting post-race activities and souvenirs. You miss out on one and your race will bear a taint in the history books of running races in the country.

In my own personal opinion, and I believe most of you will share the same, the success or failure of a race can also be likened into a relationship – “it always takes two to tango”. I have been (and would like to believe that I still am, although on a “temporarily-retired” status) a runner and now as part of a race organizing team, I gained a whole lot of appreciation of both sides of the community. Both, as just in any kind of relationship, have their own great and bad (okay, not-so-bad) points.

The runners of course will almost always gain advantage as we all believe that “the customer is always right” no matter how organizers perceive them to be wrong :P. But then again, you know folks, there is only so much that a race organizer can do and there are a lot more that we runners can do to help make a race as succesful as we want it to be.

Nope! I won’t go on preaching about other’s affinity to loot bags, to the photos or someone’s advocacy to make the registration fees lower nor will I say something about Coach Rio’s Audi TT. These I believe are hot topics that I would not dare thread on (it will be as if calling for a political debate!).

What I would just like to point out are those irregular things that some of us do that we runners may be aware of or witnesses of. Irregular in the sense that if we continue to allow it to happen, we will ourselves be a victim of their irregular (or even illegal!) acts.

Let me share to you some examples…

1. THE HOG! www.dictionary.com defines a HOG as “a selfish, gluttonous, or filthy person”. look at the picture below:

look closely at his bulging singlet at the side and at the back... hay!

 Mr. Hog passes by hydration stations and banana stations and gets more than what is supposed to be his share of race amenities (bottled water, sports drink, bananas!) and then passes this on to his bike-riding companion. He does this not only once but numerous times. No matter how much replenishment is done with regards to these supplies if there will be a number of Mr. Hogs during races, other runners, especially those who are not as fast as the others, will definitely not be able to have their share which for sure they also need.

2. THE CHEATS (Pictures grabbed from Eric Sajorda’s (kidlat biker) FB account BUT photo credit should first and foremost go to GREENTENNIAL PHOTOGRAPHY who is the original source of the photos. Thank you!)

These two Mr. Cheats, as you can see in the photos, did cut corners! And they are not the only ones doing this! There is a woman who now is famously dubbed as Ms. U because of her penchant of doing a premature “U-Turn” and will go on to cross the finish line, collect a finisher’s medal and after which, proclaim that the deed is not cheating because she did not go on to land as a podium finisher anyway.

Why cheat? If you can’t finish the distance you signed-up for, go sign-up for a shorter distance. No reputation tainted, and deep inside you feel good because you know for yourself you accomplished what you woke-up very early in the morning for.

Why cheat? If you are after the winnings/prizes/recognition, then why not again, sign-up for a shorter distance or better yet, prepare for it, train hard for it. Isn’t winning empty when you know for a fact that you do not deserve it? Isn’t winning empty when you know for a fact that you grabbed the credit that some other runner is well deserving of it?

There are a lot more examples folks. But then again, let us just concentrate on these two as we all know that running is not all about these. Running should have inculcated within us discipline not stealing or cheating. Running should have bred in us positive traits – the discipline of training, the discipline of waking up early, patience to run the whole distance that you are aiming for, a happy disposition out of the endorphin rush that we get.

Don’t you think it is about time that we try to police ourselves and our ranks? I believe that it is about time we take action against these as we at the long run (no pun intended) will be victims of these wrongdoings. The race organizers on the other hand should by now become aware of these things and have their marshalls and security on the strict lookout for these kind of people. But still, a little help from us such as calling their attention to such irregular happenings can go a long, long way. If race organizers improve their processes and their manpower and then at the same time runners help each other to improve their lot, we might be seeing for ourselves races that are perfect in our eyes. World class indeed!

My post might spun controversy but then again, this is actually and clearly happening. And it is heartily disappointing.

Running should be a breeding ground for people to embrace a healthy lifestyle and to have fun. It should not be a breeding ground for cheaters and steals.

Just my own opinion folks!