p pol The Adventures of Carboman: June 2005

Thursday, June 30, 2005


It was one of the hottest evenings I've ever experienced. The day didn't start that way though - it poured and prompted brief thoughts of curling up in bed. Things started to heat up near lunch time and got really bad at about 4pm or so. Nevertheless it was still better than having a hazy atmosphere, so I settled down for some hard work. And boy, was it hard going. Even with Adam, Kenneth and Ronnie around, I found no "kick" to complete 8 laps, just finishing 6. After getting 2 cold drinks from my car, I parked my heinie on The Bench and taunted them (and Rohaizad who've joined in) for the next 3 laps.

Later on, it was Justin and Newton's turn as they went about their laps. We spent some time chatting and joking until 7:30pm. My wife called that she had to work really late, so I went off to pick up Carbokid and had dinner at the Kuchai Lama McDonald's where the kiddo had fun playing and baby-chatting with a cute Caucasian-Chinese toddler (my son definitely has a taste for the pretty).

Not long after we went down to KL to pick up my wife and Carbokid fell asleep at the back of the car. We reached home at 10pm and everyone was dead tired and by 11pm we were fast asleep.

Reached the office this morning and started preparing for an important meeting with the COO and CCO on a major project we're running and with 3 hours to 6pm, I'm already looking forward to a perky 8 lapper at the park.

Oh yes, Happy Birthday Justin!

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Mafia Brothers

There's a hilarious photo of Kenneth and Jason here. Taken during last Saturday's visit of Ajeep at the hospital. I just couldn't stop laughing! It helps if you understand the Hokkien dialect.

Terry Fox Run - 25th Anniversary

This has to be the best event T-Shirt I've ever seen. The annual runs are organized throughout the world and over the years, a standard T-Shirt design is use regardless of where you're supporting this run. I hope this year will see the continuation of this event in KL. For more info, hit the Terry Fox Run link.

Monday, June 27, 2005

SJ 10K Race Report - By The Way, Renee Zelweger is Hot

The SJ 10K turned out to be my 7th race of the year. That means I've averaged about a race a month so far which is good enough for me. As it turned out the race went much better than I expected. Read about it here.

My next race is the Klang 10K on July 31st followed by a barren August and then a deluge of potentials in Sept in the forms of Shah Alam 10K, the Putrajaya and PJ Half Marathons.

Friday, June 24, 2005

Jennifer Connelly is Hot (When She Doesn't Look Bulemic)

Bring on the SJ10K! I'm 80% recovered and am eager to have a decent go this Sunday even if I'm quite sure that it's tough to maintain a sub 5-min pace the entire race. Kenny and Justin both measured the course once again yesterday and found the course to be 10K (give or take a few yards)! If the manner of measurement is accurate, this will make the SJ10K one of the most distance-accurate course in the Klang Valley.

One of our running mates, Ajeep aka PM26 Der_Hamsap Fella, suffered a broken collarbone during his bike ride last night. I take the same road to and from work everyday and I can vouch that this stretch is a killer. Even driving a car gives me the shivers what more riding a lightweight bike with no protection of any kind. Cars regularly zoom and zip in and out of lanes at 100kph. He's lucky to have emerged with just a broken bone. For more info, check out Azwar's site.

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Nicole Kidman is Hot (most of the time)

Like PM19, what turned out to be a key race this Sunday is turning into a "let's see how it goes and not expect too much" outing. Even as I've recovered from my diarrhea my cough has made a return, even though it doesn't seem to be serious. Mostly the dry variety with equally dry and a slightly sore throat. I suspect this could be due to my bedroom aircond where it's blowing directly down to the bed where we're sleeping. I've made a mental note to adjust it's louvres tonight. I've gargled warm salt water last night and that pretty much took care of the sore throat. I'm drinking a lime with honey drink to soothe the throat further.

I missed my run again yesterday due to this major project which I'm currently part of. The meeting with the COO took nearly 2 hours and by the time I got back to my desk there were loads of things to do. Couldn't stay awake much longer at 10:30pm, I knocked off. Today, well, today is another day and I hope I'll be able to put in some easy miles.

At this point I'm totally not optimistic of running a 50 minute 10K much less to medal in the race. I was looking forward to put pedal to the metal with Kenneth, Tey and CM but now it looks foolhardy to have such lofty aspirations given my physical condition. I'll just basically run to complete in under an hour. Now back to this messy work of mine.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Candy Dulfer is Hot!

Yeah, she's hot. But I started the morning by sharing the same lift as The Prick! Ran only 3 but fast laps with Kenneth yesterday. The weather was really nice but I wanted to test some some speedwork. Over the 3 laps I averaged 6:53 (slightly less than 5:23 pace) per lap which meant I missed out on my 3 lap PR. I'm happy. Will try to do a 5 to 6 lapper at a consistent 7 min per lap pace. If I can sustain this pace today, I'll be somewhat ready for Painful Sunday.

Monday, June 20, 2005

Jinxed June: Carbo Man Lau Sai Pulak!

The month of June has been really bad for me. With one malaise after another. Just after recovering from the cough-flu-throat infection combo, I came down with diarrhea which I attributed to the cendol I had after lunch on Friday. My runs were like every 4 hours. I was totally wasted. Some colleagues came by on Saturday and I couldn't even be a good guest with all my weakness. Lunch was depressing - while the rest were tucking into some pretty good Chinese food, I was basically eating white rice with some vegitables, all washed down with warm 100Plus. The only good thing (yeah, I'm perpetually seeing silver linings) I see of this is that the diarrhea must've flushed out whatever toxins I had in my body - sort of like going through a detox program.

This coming Sunday's Subang Jaya race is turning out to be an outing of pain for me. I've completely no idea how I'll get through this event and it's looking to be the longest 10K race I'll ever run. I'm not the only one having a jinxed June. Justin despite fighting fever and flu, managed to achieve a podium finish for Sunday's 4x3K Road Relay. It was a fantastic achievement for a team not given much of a chance. Flanked by the indomitable Fong and Tan Song Hua (accomplished marathoners - marathoners rock!!) they found themselves engaged in dogged battle with the Pacesetters Team 'A' as well as other elites with positions exchanged frequently. In the end, Tan Song Hua dug deep in his reserves to anchor the team to a fantastic 3rd placing in the Men's Open category! Read more about the event here!

Friday, June 17, 2005

Lam Phar lah!

With that, PM20 sent me on my way to my 3rd lap at KLCC yesterday evening. Earlier I had shouted out as I passed him that he will defnitely medal in bext week's Subang 10K. In case you're wondering, "Lam Phar" literally means "Balls". It was another boiling day yesterday and I found that I just couldn't repeat the 8 laps. The legs were OK but the entire body just felt heavy. Over 5 laps, I averaged 5:23 pace, which was an improvement over Wednesday's 5:53 pace.

It's definitely to do with rest - the lack of it. Since moving to the new place, we've had to leave the house at 7am. That meant waking up at 6:15am, which is 30 mins earlier than when we were staying at the old apartment. Nowadays we spend an hour in the car just to get to work - 20 mins to the nanny's place to drop Carbokid off, and the remaining time on the Sg Besi highway-Imbi-Conlay-Jalan Ampang stretch.

Today's weather looks just the same. The sun was already blazing at 7:30am as I drove to work. Since I'll be having some colleagues over to the house tomorrow, there are a couple of things I'd to do tonight. If I run, it'll be a short one - probably a 5 lap tempo. Then no running on Saturday and perhaps a 7K on Sunday evening around the housing area.

To all out there a Happy Father's Day this Sunday! To all racing this Sunday, Go For It! 

Thursday, June 16, 2005

Cute Clip

Brooks Running has launched a 90-second animated video depicting the life of a runner from birth to death. The song was written and performed by Chris Ballew, member of the rock band, Presidents of the United States of America. Click here to view. The video is in Quicktime format.

The Pegasus 2005 is HOT!

Don't you agree with me? The front upper, especially the black trimmings, looks like NB765. So are the midsole crash pad in the heel area. The shoe weighs in at 11.3oz, ideal weight for the half and full marathon. Featuring the usual full length air units (Max Air at the heel, Zoom Air at the forefoot) and thankfully the durable BRS1000-Waffle Fill combo outsole, this one has hopped to the top of my wish list.

According to Raymond from Ultimate Sports (City Square) this shoe will only reach our shores end 2005. This is usually the case for Nike as they will focus production for their biggest markets first - US of A, where else!

The 2004 Pegasus retails around RM340, so I expect the 2005 version to also be sold at around that price or possibly RM10 more. For more info visit the Nike Running website.

8 Lapper - KLCC Roasters

Steven, Rohaizad, Kenny, Kenneth, Ronnie, Julian were all at KLCC yesterday. This was a larger group than normal, even though we didn't run together. I suppose some of these fellas were tuning for this Sunday's road relay. Justin was conspicuously missing - found out this morning that he only ran later due to work. Li Sar didn't turn up possibly due to work too. There were also an increasing number of expats these days at the park.

Having started at 5:30pm, I bore the brunt of the blazing sun. I was saved only by a strong breeze throughout my run. Even so the going was tough. It's been awhile since I ran or tried running seriously. The last time, during the PAR Run ended disastrously. I was just glad I completed the 8 laps. Thankfully I ran the first 2 laps at 6:09 pace.

Will try to slot in another session this evening. BTW, Batman Begins seems to be getting good reviews. Click here to read one of them.

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

PM20's Statement of Intent

In the PM1 Shoutbox this morning, PM20 aka Der_KNN Fella aka Psy-cho-sis made clear his intention to medal in next week's Subang Jaya 10K. I'm really excited about this, not because of the prospect of racing against him but curious as to how fast he really can run. You see, this particularly (but refreshingly) vulgar fella has been avoiding running fast in recent races by running slower than what others think he can. He's also been offering pacing services to others.

We've all seen how much speed Tey has turned on in the recent weeks. It's not that he's not a fast runner. On the contrary, with all his base work running marathons, ultras and mountain climbing, Tey's ability to last the pace should not be questioned. Perhaps the only weakness is the familiarity to pacing. It's to most people's believe that Tey has the ability to sustain sub 5 minute pace for distances up to 30K and close to a 5 minute pace for the marathon. So we'll be seeing more of Tey hammering good times in the coming months, if he stays fresh and injury free.

The same goes for PM20. Even though not possessing vast experience, all the track work had to count for something. Strength is definitely something he possesses and all the abstinence from going all out in the races only make him a dark horse in the coming race.

I'm not sure how I'll perform in the race. Hopefully the tune up I'll get over the next 1 week will be suffice to bring back some fire into my pace and endurance. It'll definitely be interesting!

Tuesday, June 14, 2005


Had a little too much to eat for lunch (with Newton and Justin). A plate of noodles, a bun and 2 drinks. Hope this mug of coffee on my desk will be able to perk me up for today's planned 8 lapper.

Newton told me of my former boss's response to the PM article which appeared in The Star yesterday. He, the boss, said "Doesn't Carboman need to get management approval before appearing in a newspaper?"

Which demonstrated what an asinine person he is and which I've known him to be. An MBA holder and a rich kid - yes, he's 2 years younger than I am - apparently don't make you a person with common sense. It's common policy for larger firms to impose a regulation that prevents an unauthorised employee to SPEAK to the press. This is a necessary ruling to prevent any untoward leakage of corporate P&C information to the public.

Let me set the record straight.
1) It was just a photoshoot and nothing business related. What about the person who appeared in the background of a picture in the newspaper? Need he/she get his/her company's permission as well?

2) The shoot took place after working hours, so that my personal time. If he has a problem with that, well, fuck off! I really don't know what wrong I did him but chances are he's just a type-A asshole because of how he treats others as well.

This just epitomises the state of young and "paper-empowered" executives these days who think they're too smart for the world.

What about your company? Do you have an equally screwed up dickhead? I know PM1 has something to say about his supervisor as well as Justin about his former boss. What about the rest of you? Do comment.

Comeback Run

After 3 long weeks of clocking 10K or less mileage, I took the first few tentative steps to regain the lost endurance, hopefully in time for the SJ10K in 2 weeks' time. I'd pen this event down as a key 10K and since this popular run was absent from the circuit last year and I'd done pretty well in the shorter races/time trials prior to my downtime, I've been looking forward to this one.

A few other things conspired to hike up the race anticipation:
1) Justin measured the race route and found it to be very close to 10K. A rarity for races in KL. The SJ10K is also considered his home run

2) A relatively flat route except for the slight incline in the final 1.5K

3) A challenging medal prospect. It's anticipated that to medal this race, one has to finish within 52 minutes

4) The recent coverage in the newspapers on the PM running group has brought some limelight to the sport, the group and KLCC in general.

My splits yesterday was pretty OK - around 28 minutes for a 4 lapper (5.2K). Looking for more mileage for the rest of the week.

Monday, June 13, 2005

Bumbu Bali

Weekend was spent mostly lazing about. Enjoying the extended rest and catching up on my DVD viewing. Watched Constantine (so-so movie with bits of nifty effects) and half of Bruce Willis's Hostage, which was surprisingly gripping up to the point where my China made DVD player quit on me! I've got to get a replacement set. The present one, also China made, is a year old but at RM160 isn't expected to last very long. I'm eyeing yet another Oriental made one of RM130 from Giant which boasted strong error correction.

The 3 of us explored the eateries around Bandar Puteri Puchong. As it turned out, Bandar Puteri is home to some pretty happening spots! It's not congested and hawker-centre-at-every-corner concept as the older Puchong Jaya. And it's cleaner too.

I spotted only 2 hawker fare shops and clean ones at that, while the rest are cafe-bistro-restaurant types. There are a couple of Hong Kong food outlets and a seafood restaurant called Terminal 2. There's also a restaurant-pub which features a live band on weekends.

We settled on Bumbu Bali - a chic Balinese-Western restaurant. This place combines the eatery with decor concept and as the name suggests, it's all Balinese in concept, right down to the music. The food is uniquely Balinese and come in huge servings. Not expensive at all, with most dishes under RM20. Even the RM4.50 kid's fried rice is a huge serving! The side dishes are yummy and they serve plain water that's loaded with pandan leaves for that aromatic effect.

This site has a brief writeup on Bumbu Bali but unlike the author's remarks about the food being oily, the food we had yesterday weren't. Highly recommended!

Friday, June 10, 2005

Anti-Bacterial Offensive Status Report

After 2 full days of all-out assault to push back the bacterial occupation, the defenders have successfully gained back substantial grounds. This is achieved through patient planning and coordinated execution of the fightback.

For the first time in 3 weeks, there were stillness and quiet in the air last night as both the defenders and invaders were able to rest. The defenders' ammunication supply can last another 2 days by which time the C-in-C of the defending forces are confident of completing the mop up operations to wipe out the remaining pockets of invaders. "Millions of invaders have been killed. Through strategic targeting of key infrastructures and vital communication lines by the valiant defending forces, employing guerilla tactics, we're confident that the rebuilding process of the land can begin in earnest early next week." he said in last night's press conference. He added that the defending forces will remain on high alert during the entire period of rebuilding to prevent recurrence of invasion.

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Die You Bacteria!

I've begun my 3rd medicinal course for my throat-cough affliction. After coming down with another bout of fever at the office yesterday, I just had to take a ride to another panel doctor near the AIG building.

It's time to bring out the big guns and blast these pesky flagella equipped...things to DNA-hell! He gave me a stronger set of antibiotics, some flu and anti-wheezing (to relax the air passage) pills and cough tablets and a bitter tasting cough solution. This morning, I managed to expel a gob of thick greenish mucous. I think the onslaught on the cytoplasmic organisms are going well but I'll review the situation on Saturday.

Difference between bacteria and virus:
click here

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Oh Haile Haile!

Finally the book is mine! But I've got to wait until July to lay my grubby hands on it as that's when my Mom will be back from LA. After searching the local bookstores for 6 months, what's another?

Monday, June 06, 2005

Der_Pacemakers Anniversary Run (PAR)

If one has the passion for the sport and if one puts that passion to use, there's nothing one can't achieve. Case in point the PAR which took place last Saturday. While the country's King was enjoying his fly-bys, a small but super-passionate set of runners were congregating at the KLCC Park eager to kick off the inaugural PAR.

Who are the Pacemakers?
Der_Pacemakers are a group of runners originally formed to take part in the 2004 Penang Round Island Relay. However due to another race in the Klang Valley on the same day, the group could not make the trip north. Fortunately the cadre didn't disband. Continuing to meet at the training grounds of KLCC, Kg Pandan Track, Tasik Permaisuri and Tasik Perdana strengthened and grew the Fellowship exceeding the initial handful of "members". Today, even though the group headcount stands at 27, friends of the group has grown very big.

Most of its "members" are members of the largest running club in the SEA region (arguably in Asia), Pacesetters but in true spirit of running, there are also members of other running clubs as well as those not-affiliated. There are some really fast runners in Der_Pacemakers as well as beginners, recreational runners and reformed smokers. What brought these folks together is the love and passion for running. Group "members" are scattered as far north as Kedah and down south as Johor, with many establishing their blogs to record their adventures online. Many colourful characters even meet online daily to chat.

The Seed Has Been Planted
So it was unsurprising and appropriate that the group's founder, Ronnie, thought up this event to celebrate the inception of Der_Pacemakers one year ago. All participants were required to pay - RM15 for "members" and RM20 for "non-members" and friends. In true testament to the supportive nature of runners, individual and corporate sponsors stepped forward to foot the costs of trophies, refreshments and services. For an event of just 32 runners, the amount of support garnered was astounding, to say the least. If nothing else matters, I felt damn proud to be part of this group of friends.

How Not Too?
I had been unwell and under medication for 2 weeks prior to this run. Indeed up to the eve of the run, I was unsure if I could and should make the run. But deep in my heart, there's really no way that I could let Der_Pacemakers and all the volunteers and sponsors who had done all the important job down. So packing wife, kid, running gear and cough, I got to the park just when the participants, 32 in all, were just about to be let off. I had, unfortunately missed the group photo session.

Things Were Not What They Seem
While on the surface most, if not all, would be taking this run relaxingly, I sensed an undercurrent of pre-race tension surging through the crowd. So what was my plan? I intended to see if in my depleted state (battered more like actually), I could still sustain a good pace, and if so how long? The large gathering had attracted the gaze of the morning walkers/joggers at the park and with much laughter and bantering and a wave of the flag, we were let off! The "seeded" runners blazed off in front and the mid packers followed behind. Half-way through the 1st lap, I had Newton and Kevin for company and I told Kevin that the pace was just too fast. He agreed. True enough, I finished Lap 1 in 6:05 (4:40), which I believe to be my fastest lap ever done at KLCC. Then I made a mental note to slow down for the next few laps. I placed 11th going into 2nd lap and I held that position for the next 3 laps.

Sick Man Can't Run
Things went south from the 5th lap. The periodic coughing knocked me off pace and I eventually came to a walking pace. For awhile I considered DNFing but by doing that I would not be honouring the efforts of all present. So I trudged on with Kenneth briefly as company. Yaziz and CM had been handing me water every lap and on one, I gestured to Tey not to take my pathetic picture. Justin must have seen how bad a shape I was in. I was only able to jog without walking for the remaining 2 laps when most had completed and felt chilled. A few friends remarked that I looked a little pale.

The Runners Were The Winners
The post-run atmosphere was simply wonderful. While nearly half the field had PR'd and I'd ended up second last, I wasn't upset. In fact, I was downright glad to have finished. The skies threatened suddenly and I quickly gathered my wife and kid from the playground and left after the prize giving - beautiful trophies courtesy of Yaziz - to escape the impending rain. Regrettably we could join them for breakfast as the food would not have been appropriate given our condition. The three of us were coughing badly.

No Psychological Damage
If I were to state the state I'm in presently, I'd say that I've lost 70% of my fitness, of which my endurance factor the most severely battered. My speed somehow was left largely intact which is most surprising. My "loss" to my peers are no means an accurate measure of my ability. Psychologically I'm completely confident of it not to be alarmed and I'm patient (I've always been in my approach to running) enough to take my time to heal - coughs these days are extremely persistent in nature. And patient to the point of willing to forgo workouts and races in order to recover fully. If I may say so, with the exception of laps 5 and 6, my splits were not too bad. So it's perfectly all right.

Going Forward
Hopefully Der_Pacemakers will continue to play an active role in spreading the good vibes about running everywhere we go. The number of "members" may not grow beyond the present 27 but one thing's for sure, our circle of good friends will certainly will. That's the most important thing, isn't it?

My splits: 6:05, 6:40, 6:40, 6:43, 9:03, 9:56, 7:41, 7:08
Total time: 59:58.93
Average lap: 7:29

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Ultramarathon Man: Confessions of an All-Night Runner

After an unsuccessful purchase at Borders (they couldn't locate this book for me even though it's in their inventory!), I was glad that Kinokuniya finally brought it in. Newton called me up to inform me last evening and at RM80+, it's much more expensive than the USD13+ (before shipping charges) quoted in Amazon. But running books are rare so I didn't really mind. Next would be to hunt down Haile's book.

Star Wars Episode 3 Easter Eggs

I must be among the later folks who just caught the screening of Episode 3 end of last week. If you're a die-hard fan, you must have kept your eyes peeled for visual gags - also known as Easter Eggs (due to the nature that you'd have to look out for them). Of the many listed in the official website, I only spotted 2: The sight of the Millenium Falcon docking at the Senate complex as well as the Trooper calling for Medic aid.

If you're interested to find out more, you should definitely check this site out before you go for your 2nd, 3rd or 4th viewing!