Monday, May 31, 2010

Project 365 : Day 4 of 365

Day 4 of 365

Monday Blues
I was driving along TTDI today when i was coming back from site that i past this bus stop along the mainroad and saw a light on the perimeter wall with a sad-face. Well, it was a work of perhaps a student, or a group of students from the opposite school and something tells me that they are not too happy being students. If only they know that people like myself would rather live through exams and activities in school without worries than be slogging out to earn a living. Monday has it's way of getting to us, no?
Tool: Panasonic DMC-FT2. ISO80.F3.3. 1/50

Road To IronMan Busselton 2011 Started!

I've been slacking and to a certain extend, i am wondering how i would qualify as a speaker for the upcoming beginners' running seminar that will be held on the 5th June in Damansara Perdana. I know i have to start doing what i have been doing and this year's Wesak has been exceptionally different for me in many ways and i've decided to keep the momentum going.

To start with, my Mum-In-Law is recovering and i only have the doctor and especially Dr. Hisyam to thank for (family is ultra grateful to him. It is his birthday today!!! Have a great one Doc!)

Then Ryan has transitioned to a different Kindie with NO DRAMA. It is always difficult when kids are put through changes and as young as him at three years old going four, subtle changes such as from the Montessori system to full-fledge "no-nonsense-school-type" kindie is daunting even for me as a parents!.

Right after that, the family were blessed with a big-great opportunity that is hard to resist and a quick decision and balance of the bank (or whatever balance there were!) has us committing to something really big - something i don't think myself or wifey even ever dreamt off.

And i went 100% vegetarian on Wesak Day - I did not even taste the porridge wifey cook for the kids when i fed them.

I see the above as sign that things are starting to get moving and ripe and i shalt not deny the force.

Just like that, on Saturday, i went on a solo bike ride on DUKE, which happened to be my first ride in three months since Ironman Langkawi on 27th February and my very first virgin DUKE route.
It was a 61km ride which i had so much in my mind that i thought off and it was all over in 2H45Min and i truly enjoyed it. I cycled past Taman Melawati over the long straight 3km distance to the roundabout and there were so much nostalgic that overcame me.
I could only smile.
The body reacted really well to the ride and i believe i am on my way to recovery (blood hemo issues).
On Sunday, the morning rain gave me a chance to skip the long awaited run i've wanted to do and out of the blue, i geared up and went for a run at 4-freaking-hot-pm.
The temperature at the signboard at 1Utama says it was running at a bearable 35degreeC which might translate to a cool 40degreeC on the ground.
Yet, i soaked it all up and took the road like how i used to - to just let the legs take me.
I initially wanted to just run to the park and back. But why just run to the park when the fun is on the highway?
Detoured onto Pencala Link and it was one of the best ever (again, nostalgic) run i've had for the past one year.
I remembered how it was to be running at 2pm in the afternoon in the preparation to my first Ironman Langkawi. How i scared myself when i started pee-ing blood due to my kidney shutting down. Or how i found out apple reacts badly to body heat when stored in a running pouch during a 30km 2pm run. Those were what made me to be what i am today.
And on Sunday, i re-lived it.
Infact, i was so engrossed with the run i took the wrong turn-off and headed right into Mutiara Damansara when my intended route was back onto LDP. That meant extra distance and route that i am not familiar with. Still, i took it in my stride (slow though). 9.3km done in 1H25Mins.
Again, the body did not complained a single bit and i felt perfectly fine. No pain. No drama. Just sweet re-introduction to the things i love in life - multisports!
I am now officially training for PD Tri, 2XU run, Kinabalu Run-up The Sky, Powerman and ultimately for Ironman Western Australia 2011. I've set my aim and i've set my target and hang on my dearest reader - for i am back to update all of you with boring training logs!
Well, if there is any bonus, you get to enjoy my Project365 which started on Wesak Evening itself in between those training logs.
And i see myself giving back in my own ways to the community via talks/seminars such as the one organised by DailyMuscle.
Life, as they said, Could Only Get Better!
Welcome Back!

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Project 365 : Day 3 of 365

Day 3 of 365

Lost and Never Found.
I was running this afternoon and was about to cross the busy Persiaran Surian towards 1Utama when i noticed a Platinum card lying on a stack of dead leaves. I believe this was either dropped by the owner, or a victim of crime. It is a Mastercard judging from the card number that starts with "5". Would had made a good MC advert, but i guess today, it was lost, and never found.
Tool: Panasonic DMC-FT2. ISO80. F3.3. 1/80. Street Level.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Project 365 : Day 2 of 365

Day 2 of 365.
Back In Action
After a full three months (since Feb 28, 2010) layoff from the saddle, i rode solo through DUKE to start my "road to Busselton 2011" training. The "Amped And Ready To Take You On" sticker is a constant reminder for myself and imprinted at the back of my head as for me to challenge myself in everything i do in life. I say bring it on.

Project 365 : Day 1 of 365

I've embarked on a photography project. It will make me share one photo a day, of which i think is worth sharing. I've decided to do this to add a bit more life to my already colorful and fulfilling life and as a way to help strike a balance between the hustle of the daily grind and a moment in our life that a lot of us take for granted.
I will offer a narration on why the photo was taken and hopefully, that brings me to appreciate the things we see everyday, but missed out in our life.
I hope, through this way too, i will, by the end of the 365 days, turn the photos into a photobook and to be used as a coffee table book for my humble home.
It will serve as a good way - a photo-diary of sort to remember every single day in a small way.
To start it off, i've chosen Wesak Day which fall on yesterday for this project.
Here is Day 1 of 365.
Wesak Day marked the start of Project365. Six months ago, it will take me at least 30 minutes and a tripod to produce an image of the moon. This one taken on the full Wesak Day moon, less than 60seconds. Enlightening. I am mastering my tools.
Tools: D90+55-200VR. 200mm. ISO200. 1/500. F11. No Tripod.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

5th June 2010 – Seminar: How To Run Your First Race

*Signed Up for the upcoming KL Marathon but still feeling unprepared?
*Your FIRST 5km/21km/Full Marathon race?
*Don’t know how to get started with training?

Kuala Lumpur Fitness Events Presents…

World Class Running Expert Shares The Secrets To Running Your First Race in a Special Seminar At Damansara Perdana

On Saturday, June 5th at 11a.m., expert Ironman Triathlete and Multiple Marathoner will visit Damansara Perdana and share his world-class knowledge on preparing for your first race for men and women of all ages in a special 90-minute presentation for a super-low price of RM30 ONLY for KL residents.
Date: 5th June 2010

Time: 11.00 AM

Venue: Fitness Innovations (Malaysia)

2-8, 2nd Floor, D19 Business Centre,
Jalan PJU 8/3, Damansara Perdana,
47820 Petaling Jaya, Selangor, Malaysia.

Lim Ee-Van (a.k.a Stupe): With a humble beginning, his first 10km race was done in 90minutes – but that was almost 8 years ago. A father of two toddlers and an engineer by profession, Ee-Van has successfully mastered the art of juggling work, play and fitness, quickly rising to become one of the country’s most inspirational and motivating recreational athlete.

Open forum Q&A at the end – get all your specific questions answered!

We have very limited space and this event will fill up quickly. If you wish to attend, or to simply receive more information about this event, pleaseSIGN-UP at the WEBSITE HERE or call us at 016 665 4206.

Those who are attending will be provided with a registration code – instructions will be sent to you once you register.

Happy Wesak Day!

Hi all,

As an effort to bridge and to share with fellow readers the significant of Wesak Day as part of the Buddhist in Malaysia and why it is celebrated.

To start off, i am born Buddhist. Buddhism is both a religion and a way of life. When you see people burning joss sticks and such, that is Taoism, it is a ritual. The Malaysian Chinese community in has sort of assimilated and adopted practices from both Buddhism and Taoism in their life and both has now so jumbled up it is hard to separate one from the other - and often, what really separate each one from another is really the scale of the ritual involved (Noticed those tong-tong chiang during funeral? those elaborate ritual are actually Taoism, Buddhism takes a whole gentler approach and concentrate on Metta (love) as a way of giving to the deceased, so chanting and recital of holy scriptures are involved).

There are two main branch of Buddhism - Theravada (The School of the Elders) and Mahayana (The Great Vehicle). To put it simply, Theravada is the more old school teaching . Mahayana is (in laymen's term) more like those "Zen" type of teaching. In Malaysia, there are more Buddhists practicing the old teaching than the Zen teaching (but if you want to look cool, just say Zen la, everything also Zen-like)

The foundations of Buddhist tradition and practice are the Three Jewels: the Buddha, the Dharma (the teachings), and the Sangha (the community). While a lot of these can be elaborated in more words, simply put, it is a commitment of a person to "seek refuge under the Three Jewels" and separate themselves from the worldly (materialistic) ties.

In another word, there is a lot of Buddhist around, but most are not practicing it (including yours truly).

Being brought up in a traditional Chinese family (both my parents are 3rd Generation Malaysian Chinese), many practices that has happened in the household of my grandparents and my great-grandparents are already diluted and has a lot of influence from the society and way of life in Malaya/Malaysia. However, religion and it's practices are a daily affair as we make it a point to pray as a family everyday.

As per our text book in school (Form 3 to Form 5), we all know who Siddhartha Gautama is. He was borned a prince to a small community where there are only two types of class - Masters and Servants. From birth, the Father, the King, has already been told by a fortune teller that his son will either be a great king that will rule a vast land, or renounce all material and ties and become a holy man; depending on what he sees in his life.

The King did all he could but failed to prevent Him from going out of the palace and saw (what was later known as "the Four Sights") - an old man, a sick man, a corpse and a holy man.

He started to learn meditation and learn from a holy man in his quest to find an end to suffering. In his quest, he fasted, exposed himself to pain and practiced breath-holding (Yoga???). None of them provided him with any solution to end suffering. It was told that He accepted milk and bread from a person and that has been a changing moment where (it later became "the Middle Way") He realised that moderation is the way to go.

The story goes on and years later, under the Bodhi tree, he attained enlightenment and was then known as Buddha. I can't recall the event of the three days he sat under the Bodhi tree before he was enlightened (I learned this in Sunday School in Brickfields though - but back then, it was more of meeting girls than trying to pay attention in class :P)

However, i do know, and tried to practice the "five percept":

To refrain from killing,
To refrain from stealing,
To refrain from sexual misconduct
To refrain from lying
To refrain from intoxicants

There are extension to these five basic percepts and i was told there were other 3 or 5 more, which, again, i can't recall. But i know they were of the more specific such as only eating a meal a day (true Buddhist monks only eat once a day - usually before noon). So, now you know, those fake monks walking in Kuala Lumpur with an alms bowl are nothing but fake. Buddhist monks do not sell anything or exchange money for material items (usually a symbolic bracelet or such).

Buddhism believes in karma and re-birth. In the Theravada teaching, each Buddhist tries to attain Nirvana - a practice usually not easy.

However, i was also taught about the many level of re-birth :
1. Naraka - or Hell. Yeap, you are re-birthed in Hell and has to go through 18 levels of punishments - depending on the severity of your mis-deed in your humanly-life. There are chances to "move" out of hell if you are at the "higher" level of hell (i.e. - if it is a basement parking, you are at level B1 to B3, but level B16-B18 - you can forget it, it is like you are trapped in a cycle where your death kept occuring and you kept being re-birth again in the same level to die the same way, again, and again. usually, this is reserved for politicians ). B18 is known as Chamber of Avici - Crooks who have committed heinous crimes, brought misery to the people and betrayed the ruler are placed on a platform above an inferno. The unlucky ones fall off the platform into the inferno and burn while the lucky ones remain on the platform. These spirits are never to be reincarnated.
2. Preta - you are sharing space with Human, but you are never seen - Lost soul/hungry ghost.
3. Animals
4. Human - you are given a second chance to attain Nirvana
5. Nirvana- no, there are no harem up there, i was told.

So, now that the basic of Buddhism and a bit of revision on our Form 3 to Form 5 history is in place, it will be easier for me to just tell all of you that Wesak Day, is a day where the Buddhists would remembers how Gautama Buddha attained His enlightenment and has found a way on how human could end all suffering and live a life to reach Nirvana. It is a day of reflection (of oneself) and correcting to be a better Buddhist.

Have a good weekend y'all.

*Please correct me if my entry above is inaccurate. The above was written based on my shallow knowledge and how i was told about it when i was growing up.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Avent Bottle Leaks : Pictorial Solution

This is follow up from the previous Avent Bottle Leak posting.

It worked. No more leakage - unless Nadia open up the bottle in the middle of the night, which she does at times to drink the milk faster.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Wifey's First Offroad Adventure

"It is all in the mind. What the mind says, the body will follow"
Wifey signed up (or rather, i signed her up) for the coming 21km run in June. Her racing exposure is limited to a few 10km run she did and the 30++km walk to accompany me during Ironman 2010.
So, why did i even think of signing her up for the 21km? (To start with, no, this did not make her love me more).
Truth is, i know she can do it. And i just love to push the envelope a bit further.
Yesterday's trail run was also a run up/first official training for her first trip to Sabah - and I've signed her up for the Race Up The Sky series, i.e. run up Kinabalu. She has a spanking new Brooks Cascadia 5 and it was de-virginised today.
I must do my best to ensure she gets the support she needed to complete these races like how she was always there during my races all these times. It is time to give back to her.
The trail-bashing/hike/walk/run/crawl today was attended by myself and wifey, Jabir, Bandit, Budin, Khalil and Sheikh (Budin's colleague). We started at 0700hours and headed towards the first 1km which is mostly rubber plantation. Already, within the first 10minutes, i was dripping with sweat. But today's weather was pretty alright compared to two weeks ago where it was super-humid.
The first 4km was a predictable climb to elevation 350m above sea level (asl). It was a mainly walking affair as i was still testing the water to see if my iron level is up to it. Wifey doesn't seems to sweat a bit, but as the trail progressed on, she was sweating.
Hike Hike! Run! Run!

From 4km onwards, it was a flat and downhill trail to the river crossing at KM6. Wifey did struggle a bit on the downhill part as she has not ran offroad, let alone running offroad, downhill. I must say she held up pretty well despite (she thinks) that she were holding everyone back.
I find myself reminding her that today isn't a race and it was an introductory crash course to trail/hiking for her.
For precaution, i brought along a hiking staff/stick so she could use it as a "third-leg" to stabilise or to move her forward. It is nothing shy to have some of these to help - in fact, Bandit has two and he was very much looking like he was ski-ing through the course.
Even myself, during the Hash Challenge, has resorted to use two hiking staffs to support/help/push/stabilise myself.

At the river crossing, i could see just how happy wifey was as she did not have any leeches on her legs, or anywhere and it signal the U-turn of the activity today.

Little did she know i had a wicked plan to detour and bring the group towards a less travelled route that leads to the northwestern fringe of the Klang Gate Dam.

The detour was only a short 1km in and 1km out. And it was a small elevation (gain of about 80m) that we have to overcome. The trail at this detour has a lot of fallen trees and shrubs. The ground was slippery with moss and the damage to the environment, minimal.
We were rewarded with an even bigger river at the end of the trail and it took everyone just 1 minute for us one by one to start immersing ourselves in the river.
It was ice cold and refreshing. The overheated body were instantly cooled off and fatigue removed.
Wifey took the chance to sit with both feet in the river and thoroughly enjoyed the experience. The rest of the boys, well, became boys.
After about 30 minutes, we packed up and made our way back. It was another 4km before we reach base camp and everyone made it out safely and satisfied to have covered about 16km in 4:30 and burning off 3000kcal.
As for wifey, she survived two leech attack - on on the shin, one on the underside of her arms. The pain only sets in, or perceived to set in when she realised she had the leeches hanging on to her.
That, is really a proof that the mind is at work.
And my theory of "Mind Over Matter" really does meant "If you don't MIND, it doesn't Matter".
No one should really complain with scenery like this
Well done Wifey! You made me proud. I will gladly put the 2XU calf guard over your tired legs tonight (thought you think it's sexier if you put them on yourself) and good to see you waking up fresh today with no pain/fatigue on your calves.
My butt/glutes is a totally different story altogether.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Friends Are For Life

Friends. We all have them.
Fair weather. Stormy weather. Some stick to you, some don't. Some are there to ride on you, taking advantage and manipulating you. Some are there, no questions asked. Always.
I have my fair share of both. While i do not expect all of them to be more than who they are, i do expect myself, to give them what i have.
I've lost a number of friends - good to say that most of them are because we do not gel or clique anymore. Why is that good? Because to date, the friends i've lost through this reason superseed supersede (Thank You Nasrun - this is what friends are for ;-)) the friends i lost because they passed away.
I was having lunch with a very good buddy just a few days ago as i had to shuttle between two extreme end of Klang Valley and timing was just right for a lunch meet up session.
It has been some time since we catch up and there is so many things to say and share in those short hour in what we working class call "lunch".
June, the curry fish head was eaten on your behalf.
As we go along in our live, we will realise that some of these friends are like family. You recognise them as your blood brothers and sisters, abeit from different parents. Some are even closer than relatives.
But for all it is worth. Take time to catch up with all your friends. Don't wait until you drift apart; like myself, did not manage to even have one last chat with some of them before they leave this world.
Cherish what you have - for they too, wished that you do the same.
For those that has burned the bridge, well, forget them, after all, it is their lost - but i wish for them only the best and may they find friends that they can call their own.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Running Your First 10KM : Part 2

Continuation of the Article on how to run your first 10km, here is part 2:
Running your first 10km, part Duex
I realise there is a gap in the article as i failed to address sports nutrition for pre-race day, race and after race. I should now, perhaps, write one on that? What say you DM?

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Ngae Koh Hieng - In Memory 08-01-1954 -15-05-2010

Photo taken from his Facebook page. This is how i've always known him

Our friend, Ngae - the barefoot runner in sarong and constant smile, has returned to his creator today at 1800hours.

He has been fighting brain tumor since 2009 and was making a come back.

He will sorely be missed.

Do offer your prayer, in your own time, and own ways to this dearest friend.

The last run up Genting with the gang and Ngae in the middle giving Jaja a hug. Those hot coffee we drank was him organising it with the Genting people. Thank You Ngae. For all the wonderful memories in these short 4 years i know you.

I left a message on your Facebook wall. I hope they have FB in heaven.

Rest In Peace Buddy.

Avent BPA bottle leaks?

It gets really frustrating when the bottles leaks. I am talking about those darn Avent BPA free bottles with watchamacallit leak ring...that leaks.

A few friends has asked us if we had the same problem. They were not alone or did they bought defective Avent bottles.

Thanks to Crunchy and his wife, the solution has been found. This is like heaven-sent as we were this close (very close) to dump these bottles into the rubbish bin.

Credit to again, Crunchy and his wufe. Thank you!!!

Click here to see light at the end of the bottles.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Running Your First 10KM : Blog Entry in DailyMuscle.Com

I recently guest-posted in Malaysia Premier Fitness Blog : DailyMuscle on how to run your first 10km.

It was indeed an honor to be able to contribute in that blog and if you are interested, please hop on to:

How To Run Your First 10km Part 1


Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Biotherm Homme : My Facial Regime

Personal grooming are not exclusive to the women and at this age and time, more men are ensuring that they are getting the same treatment for their own personal grooming need.
There is really nothing to be ashamed off with facial and personal grooming and as all of you know, I lead a very active life; swim, bike and running and I am constantly exposed to the element. I hardly use sun block or anything with SPF in them. Not because I think it’s not manly to use them but they are because I hate the feel of the sticky lotion on my face and how it will feel “blocked” on the pores and skin.
It felt like I am drowning in my own sweat.
So, with my skin (all 34 years of it) exposed to the element and also harsh air-conditioning 16hours a day (weekday in office, blowing at sub 23degree C) and to the chlorine, sun, wind, dust and chemical at other time, I am looking older than I actually am.
Don’t get me wrong, I am not in denial about growing old. I’ve been going for facial treatment with my family as long as I can remember and I still go to one when I find the time.
However, relying on facial treatment to “heal” damaged skin might not be ideal if one do not have the time.
My facial treatment regimes at home are what every man is doing.
Get into shower.
Wet the face.
Squeeze some facial washer (anything, even if it is your wife’s products) – make sure they aren’t toilet bowl cleaner.
Wash face.
And you are wondering why the break outs and why those ingrown hairs.
I first received some products from my short stint in Cleo magazine about 5 years back (don’t ask) and I was introduced to the Biotherm Aquapower moisturiser. It has what Biotherm call as Pure Thermal Plankton (PTP) and it was simply the best moisturiser I’ve ever used whenever my skin was under stress.
I am also using Boots facial cleanser that I usually get family or friends to get from the pharmacies in Bangkok whenever they are there for a holiday or work.
My regime is simple – just like any men would do.
When I found out that Biotherm released a new line of products for men (and hence, known as Biotherm Homme), I did not hesitate to go and find out what they are about.
The tricky things bout facial stuffs are usually how well they will suit your skin. Not everyone’s skin is the same and I can vouch for that. What sounded and worked wonder on someone you think have the same skin type as you might not work on you.
I have dry skin with oily T-zone (that is the area around my eyebrow and down my nose) – which are prone to breakouts whenever I am under stressed or over-stressed my skin with the elements.
Those that know me will know that I am Mr. Skeptical number one. I tend to try things and say it as it is and here is my take on Biotherm Homme’s stuff.

Product tested #1: High Recharge Energy Cleanser
The cleanser sort of reminds you of Neutrogena facial foam which appears as liquid but foam up when you press the nozzle. This facial cleanser holds a lot of potent ingredient and namely they are Pure Ginseng, Oligo-vitamins, and Pure Thermal Plankton (PTP) apart from the pressurized cleansing agent.
Again, I need to stress that this PTP is exclusive to Biotherm and the “therm” in the brand name refers to this PTP. PTP are found in the mineral water in Pryness, France and were believed to be able to rejuvenate the skin. PTP is found in every Biotherm products.
Being the user of the Aquapower, I can vouch for that. I use this after every hard swim, bike or run (or combination of the swim, bike AND run) I do. My face was never sunburned (though it’s normal for the batman eyes due to the shades I wear).
Being a long time user of Biotherm also meant that my skin should not overreact (read: break out) if I were to try any of their other products (again, PTP is found in every one of them – meaning, I have no allergy or bad reaction to them, YAY!).
Back to the High Recharge Energy Cleanser, I tried using it the first time four days ago and I simply love the textured gel that foam as you rubs between your hands. Don’t forget to wet your face first and slowly work the cleanser into your skin.
The smell is pleasant and something you won’t mind putting on your face without feeling all girly (look, some men has issues using products because they smell girly).

The gel is orangey colored and felt light. I felt a little tingling sensation as I rub the foam around my face. I believe if you can even use it as a shaving cream due to the consistency! In fact, the cleanser was meant to prepare your skin for shaving! Use it every morning and rinse with warm water and it should soften those manly stubbles and helps prevent ingrown hair too!
After rinsing off, I felt the skin clean. It is like when you wash your face and cleaned it with toner. To say it felt springy is over-rating it, but to say that it felt clean and soft, I believe, is the operative word here. You see, harsh cleanser strip all the oil off your face, leaving them clean AND tout. The tout feeling is a misleading way of thinking that the skin is clean when it is actually being dried while cleaning!
So, Step 1 ensured that your skin is Cleaned and remained soft!

Product rating (out of 5, with 5 being best): 4 (only because it has little smell, I wish my cleanser has stronger smell)
Usually, my cleansing regime does not go beyond washing the face with a cleanser. But with age catching up and with the need to maintain youthful-ness (and not to be called uncle), I think I need to move beyond a one-step affair la.
I’ve used up the facial cleanser within two months. Just be reminded that you only need about 20sen size of product to do magic.
Product tested #2: High Recharge Energy Splash.
Contrary to the product name, please do not splash the clear liquid onto your face, as in literally doing that. Instead, pour some onto a facial cotton (like how you would do with toner) and work it into the face. You can do this after shaving and use it as an aftershave that has subtle cologne smell to it.
The clear liquid feels cool to the skin and it does feel like it is soothing those tired skin. I have other aftershaves as well and you know how aftershaves feel like on raw-just-shaved-skin.
Nothing short of that “Macaulay Culkin Home Alone” feeling (I bet you wish you can scream like him too, just for the effect).
I could feel the Energy Splash works into the skin and it was grease-less. While some toner claims to “not have greasy feelings”, we all know that is not true. I am glad that this liquid remained as liquid and do not gives me the “drowning” feeling when it dries up. In fact, there wasn’t a hint of “layer” after it dries up.
The Energy Splash has Oligo-minerals, Vitamins, Pure Ginseng, Aspartic acid and PTP as the ingredient. 

Product Rating: 5 (because no greasy feeling and smells good without making the next person think you bath in them!)
For the average man, this sort of sum up their facial need without going overboard. For me, this is adequate, but with my Aquapower running low, there is always no harm to try another product from the same range to see how it all comes together with constant use.

Product Tested #3: High Recharge Moisturising Concentrate

Woah! The name sounded over-promising. But judging by how well the first two product tested behaved, this third item might just live up to its name.
It has been two months since I’ve started using the whole set as a daily regime and a friend I see twice a year (once during Ironman, once when I go down to Kluang, somehow) commented on how “smooth and nice” my face looked. Coming from a guy, it could meant two things. 
1. He is gay – which is unlikely as he is as hot blooded as the next male you can find.
2. He really meant it as as a triathelete that constantly expose the skin to the element, he knows how bad one could look with those sun damages and all.
I took it as compliment and I must say that this regime paid off.
High Recharge comes in white cream form and it is light to the touch. It smells like the other two but more subtle that the facial washer.
The consistency is akin to the Aquapower I am used to and the application is the same: do it morning and evening. There is no such thing as too much of a good thing to the face!

The cap needed to be twisted counterclockwise to allow the content to be pressed out. So, don’t go pressing it too hard thinking you need to break the “seal”.
Apply in circular motion (if you are not sure, observe how your girlfriend, wife or mother does it) and let it rest.
The milky content dries up into your skin and again, I was surprised there wasn’t any greasiness. This is great!
I applied it to the boil that is growing and it doesn’t seem to irritate it a bit. In fact, after 4 days of usage, it doesn’t look as if it has aggravated the condition and I noticed there is no flaking skin anymore on the surface.
The High Recharge moisturiser acts like a “battery” that keeps all the goodies in the skin and used to restore the energy it needs to fight fatigue (or dull skin) and visible consequences (crow’s feet?)
This potent bottle carries Aspartic acid, White willow extract, Pure ginseng extract, Trace elements and mineral salts, Vitamins B5 (I believe this is what gives it “energy”) and C L30(meaning the vitamin C has a 30% bio-availability of L-Ascorbic acid, or Vitamin C for the non-chemist)

Product rating: 4.5 (because it feels like, works like and dries like something I’m used to: Aquapower).
As the moisturiser dries up on the face, I carried on through the day which typically meant working (on weekday) and helping wifey out during the weekend. That also meant the product are put to the test and I sweat.

Not a single instances that despite having three products used on my face every day, twice a day, which it felt greasy or oily. In fact, I felt that the facial oil were under control while the skin were adequately moisturized.
If you are as vain as me, you will know that the men’s skin will either dry up or have those open pores look or become overly oily like you can fry an egg on it under the hot sun.
Biotherm Homme performed as it should and as it promised.
The pricing/retail prices for the items above are as follow:
High Recharge Energy Cleanser: RM100
High Recharge Energy Splash: RM110
High Recharge Moisturising Concentrate: RM175
They are available at all Biotherm counter in major shopping complexes.
Parkson KLCC
Jusco Mid Valley
Metro MV
Jusco - 1 U
New Parkson - 1U
Pavillion Biotherm Kiosk
Parkson - Sunway
Parkson - Subang Parade
If you are unsure if your skin will react badly to the products, I believe the counter will have test samples you can bring home to try and then you could judge for yourselves if this product is the one you have been looking for.
The Biotherm Homme range is suitable for dry to combination skin type. Just drop by at the places above to help you to determine that.
Go try them and let me know what you think!

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Xterra Malaysia 2010 : CANCELLED


The Xterra race which was brought to our shore last year was cancelled this year.

I attribute this to the incompetency of the current organising team that was arrogant to think they could do without the very same people that made it happen last year.

Well, having a reputation (as bad paymaster) did not help.

I felt so sorry for the paid participants. The amount of training and how they looked forward to this.

Monday, May 03, 2010

42KM Hash Challenge - Laboring All The Way

Last Saturday was my second Hash experience. it was not any ordinary Hash, but a hash that only comes once every 18 months.
Aptly called the 7th International Hash Challenge, the race attracted racers from all over the world (well, almost) and there were equal mix of locals and foreign participants. The race goes to show just how sports unites and goes beyond racial, religion and creed factor. Beautiful.
There were 30 teams of 4 members inside. Each have to include at least one lady. I joined the team setup by Azman, which include Elfrie and Nizz. We have not met each other as a team until the night before. Talk about chemistry.
Myself, Elfrie, Nizz and Azman
Up till the morning at 5am when i was prepping to get to the pick up point, i was still pretty sure that the 42km was do-able. I've ran marathons before and never once i said i can't do it. While my very little hashing experience told me that i could, at most, move at 5km/h IF i run (or couldn't care less what overhangs above my head or what lies below on my feet).
Hotel De Palma was the absolute last place i know where i was at 6.15am. By 6.45am, we were somewhere behind UIA Gombak...or would i say, the Sg Pusu's trail.
I've done this trail a couple of time via mountainbike, and to do this by foot, will be the absolute first.
The biggest surprise (a big pleasant one) was when i saw familiar faces in the like of Julie, AJ, Azmar and Denis running this race too!

I thought i was the only one with nothing to do...
The team took their time with pacing slowly, bearing in mind that this will be Nizz's first hash too. Mas, being the veteran showed why even the seasoned hasher from Russia (and a mother of one kid) walks and not run at the start. Even old uncle (they are deceivingly strong) walks. So, why should not we, the younger perceived to be
The first stage covers about 16km around Klang Gate Dam (which hovers about 800m on our right throughout this section). It will be the longest and no support league of the race. Everyone has to stay on paper trail and be self sufficient. Simple enough.
The first 16km promised (by the organiser) to be a flat route. Followed by a 7km of extreme climb (that Denis said "grabbing of branches and roots"), then a 7km of hot open route over Bukit Antarabangsa, then a 8km "a bit of climb" route over to Bukit Belacan and finally, a 7km "get your ass up those incline" route to Hulu Langat over 3 peaks.
Cut off was 12hours. 
The first 16km proved to be challenging for my team as we tried to keep moving forward. I know i was the hindrance to a certain extend with my not so fit condition and with Nizz's first outing (and getting dirty). 
After 10km, the team got separated. Nizz and Elf went right and myself and Mas went left, thinking they went left. Then after 800m, we noticed there wasn't any paper trails. bad news. We double back but we can't find both Nizz and Elf, but instead, we found the sweeping party.
That very much spelt the end of the race for us.
The last 6km was bad. Having to duck under thick undergrowth, climb over rotting trees, being attacked by swarm of ants and having leeches hanging onto our legs. I had one that attempted to sink it's fangs into my left hand and one that was hovering above my right moobs (man-boobs that is).
We missed the first cut off by 15minutes - and found out that both Nizz and Elf did took the right way and was ahead of us.
16km and it took us 4:45. Nothing great but it was a good workout and attempt.
We were later taken to water station 4(WS4) at Bukit Belacan, which is also the last WS for the race before a 3-peak climb to the finish.
Nizz and Elf was apparently sent to WS3, which has caused the team not being able to reunite until much later.
At WS4, the preparation for the front hashers was ready by 2.30pm as they expect the earliest team to check in at 3.00pm.
No one came in until 4.30pm - which goes to show just how tough the route from WS2-WS4 WS4, the mileage counter was 40km...which effectively meant that the whole route wasn't 42km, but 47km!
Cut off time was actually extended to 5.30pm to ensure more participants were allowed to "finish" the race.
We were allowed to continue with the last 7km - but we are not considered as finisher. It was completely alright as all we wanted to do was to walk/run.
Nizz decided to call it a day and left early while myself, Mas and Elf carried on.
The last 7km was not particularly hard, but having to top 3 peaks with equal elevation of 350m each took a toll on me. My heartrate shot up to 200 at one point (i lost count of how many beats per 6 second interval, and calculated maybe about 35/10seconds interval).
I had to stop at every climb. Elf was strong. Azman was being a very nice to stay put with me to ensure i am alright.
Along the way, teams after teams were overtaking me and team mates. 
When i emerged from the last climb, i saw the basecamp. You have no idea how happy i was - now, go imagine those that did the whole distance - it could had been orgasmic!
I crossed the finish line being a none-finisher, but with a sense of achievement as i have never attempted anything like this before.
It was also at the finish line that i found out Team 6 (Azmar, AJ, Juls and Denis) did not meet the cut off at WS4.
It was bath at the river after that, and waiting for the bus to return to the Hotel.
Myself, Azmar and Denis spoke at length about how tough and fun this race was and perhaps, will come back for more in 18months time.

Click here for Denis' report : GingerbreadMan
UpdatedClick here for Julie's report : MissJewel