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Wednesday, February 25, 2015
Tuesday, February 10, 2015
Well not quite since the highest point in Singapore is only just slightly over 160 metres. But that is Bukit Timah Hill and Bukit Timah hill is now close so the next highest point is Mt Faber at 105m and that where are the trail runners looking to race overseas are flocking to now that they are deprived of good old Bukit Timah.
I followed 1 group last week and did just 1 loop of the hill. One can get a pretty nice view of the Telok Blangah Estate from the top of the hill. The view stretches all the way to Orchard Rd. On the other side of the road, one can see Sentosa, the cable cars and on a clear day, some islands of Indonesia. Instead of using my own lousy camera to show the view from the top, here is a VR taken by Singapore top VR photographer, Aram Pan. Guess what? I am mentioned inside the post! Cheap thrill!
The beauty of running around these areas is that there are several high ground where you can have that top of the world feeling and look out far far away.
From Mt Faber, I went on to Telok Blangah Hill crossing the beautiful Henderson Waves Bridge. And right smack in the middle of the bridge which is 36 metres high you get these awesome view.
|Looking southward towards the sea|
|The Telok Blangah and Bukit Merah estates|
After the Henderson Waves Bridge is the Telok Blangah Hill. There are some mean slopes here including a very short and steep one up to Terrace Garden where you can another panoramic view.
Standing between Telok Blangah Hill and Kent Ridge is a patch of forest and over this is a series of metal bridge called the Forest Walk hovering over the forest. And beside being able to see the flora and fauna close up, one can get another great view of the far beyond.
After crossing the bridge, its up to Kent Ridge Park and here there is a series of zig zag path which leads to what is known as the Canopy Walk which comes with a view of the Hort Park below it.
From here it is a straight run down Kent Ridge Park. That is the easy part. But coming back up, there is either the long and steep Pepys Road or the other long and steep Vigilante Drive. By now after conquering the up and down from Mt Faber to Kent Ridge, I was well and truly beaten and could only managed to walk up Vigilante Drive. At the top of course the reward is another top of the world view.
All in, depending on how one runs, one can do up to 20 km covering Mt Faber, Telok Blangah Hill, Hort Park, Kent Ridge Park with total elevation of more than 500 metres. Not a lot by any other measures but certainly a good enough workout for those who want to do some serious hill runs and get many great view at the same time.
|Here is the elevation for the run last week|
Thursday, February 05, 2015
This comes about 3 years late. But hey, better late than never. I first read about the Skechers Gorun back in 2012. Back then, Skechers had just embarked on the development of a running shoes and the review wasn't that great. Nevertheless, my curiosity was piqued and I was determined to get hold of one to try out. But being the kiam kanah, I wanted to get one at a more down to earth price since it was just for the purpose of trying. I waited and waited and Gorun 2 came and went and 3 came along. And finally I decided to buy. But not the Gorun 3 but the by now on offer Gorun 2. Beggars can't be chooser so I ended up with a blue shoe. My 2nd pair of all blue shoe after so many years. But the store didn't have any other color available. Worst of all, it was half size too small. I knew it the minute I put it on but so strong was my desire to try it, that I just went ahead. To be frank though, I quite like the color. That was back in the middle of last year and after that, it was left in the box for another 6 months before I finally took it out this year!
The Gorun 2 comes with a 4mm heel to toe drop and is considered a minimalist shoe. The upper is very breathable. And it is light coming in at about 200 gm.
The heel counter is on the low side just like the tongue is pretty short too for my long feet at least.
The sole is what set the Gorun 2 apart from other running shoes. It comes with round studs which they called Pods. Not too sure what the various colors and design does but whatever it does though it must be doing something great for I am going to say it now, this is probably why I now consider this the best pair of running shoes I ever have!
So far I worn it for over more than 30 km and I am loving every km of it. Notwithstanding the fact that it is still half size too small. In my first run, I knew it was too small and because I have Morton's toe, it was a tight fit at the front although the width was just right. Not willing to give up on the shoe, in my next run, I decided to go sockless and bingo! Without the sock, the fit was just right and there was no blisters on my foot. Not at the heel where I expected or the side of the toe. Nothing. I was really delighted!
Cushioning. This is supposed to be a minimalist shoes and rightfully I do not expect much cushioning but it was there all right. Not a lot but enough to make the landing soft. And best of all, extremely comfortable.
Traction: I ran mostly on road and in one instance, after a heavy downfall. There was no slippage even on the smooth concrete surfaces. Ground feel was good too. Obviously because this is not a trail shoe, I have not attempted to run in the trails with it. I think the upper appears to be a bit thin to take the toils of the trail.
Flexibility. The shoe is rather flexible despite the presence of the many pods. The design of the pods forces the wearer to land on the midfoot and toe off properly. No way to land on the heel which is as it should be. I took it for a few hard runs with the longest distance at 10km and it works well especially the pushing off part.
Water Proofing. I ran once after a heavy downpour and maybe because I didn't deliberately run into puddles of water, my foot didn't get wet.
Overall, I would say this is by far the most comfortable running shoes I ever have. However, to date the longest distance I did in them was 10km and I am a bit apprehensive about going longer distance although I am aware many runners have already worn it for marathons. Maybe now that Gorun 4 is already out, I will go and see whether I can get a pair of Gorun 3 at a price below $100.00 with the correct sizing and perhaps try to run a marathon in them.
Saturday, January 31, 2015
Md Shariff Abdullah, more popularly known as Singapore Blade Runner is Singapore's first blade runner. Born without a left foot, life was tough for young Shariff as he struggles with ridicule from schoolmates, a broken family and more physical problems as his stump got infected and had to be further amputated. However, not one to be put down by life, he pressed on and in 2008, inspired by Oscar Pistorius the South African amputee, he started competing competitively and soon went on to compete in many road and trail races including the prestigious Boston Marathon.
Despite his handicap, Shariff dares to dream and once had a dream to climb Mt Everest. Unfortunately, upon doctor's advice he has to stop that dream and is now focusing on completing the Tenzing Hillary Everest Marathon in 2015. However, as a self employed motivational speaker, he is still short of funds for this trip and is looking to raise more funds for a spare Ossur Flex Run Prosthetic leg, registration fee, flight and accommodation, insurance and other incidental fees.
How you can help:
- Run with him or your friends and simply share a picture of you running saying you support his trip to Everest, and asking others to donate, with this URL
- Rather not run? Just share his page http://www.sgbladerunner.com/everest-2015.html
- Kind contribution or purchasing the blade runner products which includes a limited edition Compressport tee.
For more information go to his home page http://www.sgbladerunner.com/ or visit his Facebook page