Sunday, August 24, 2014

Skechers GoRunUltra Nite Owl Review

Been a while since I've blogged or provided a good update. Rest assured all is good and I've been going along well with family, work and training (in that order). Though it appear I am not working, as some that know me think (hey, he is on social media all the time, how is he working). Haha.
This post has been sitting in my "draft" for a month at least and long overdue. Maybe like 250km overdue since I've received the GoRunUltra Nite Owl from Skechers Malaysia. 


Being seen = potentially ensuring a safer late evening run
This is a follow up after the last unboxing of the Skechers GoRunUltra Nite Owl Edition. Along those mileage, the shoe has seen both road and trail action. Consistent with the GoRunUltra purpose, it is built to handle both on and offroad condition and it truly live up to it's name in terms of cushioning and grip. I brought this shoe into the trail during the Team 2ndSkin Trail Running Clinic about a month back. 
Look ma! No hand! Photos by Eugene 2ndSkin

First Feel
This updated GoRunUltra "feel" is the same as the original GoRunUltra that I've reviewed here. In my unboxing write up, I put up the differences between the GRU original and this Updated version. The biggest differences (not counting the Cool Glow In The Dark feature) is the upper synthetic material that make up the new mesh and overlay. 
Gripping all around. Photos from Eugene 2ndSkin
The feel of the dual-density sole is the same and the layout of the sole remains as well. I guess the philosophy of "why change something that work" holds true here. Despite the bulk, the shoe is surprisingly nimble and offer good protection. It is super flexible without giving the feeling that it does not offer sufficient support. I've raced this shoe (original) for Sabah Adventure Challenge and absolutely loved the fact that walking/jogging/running on hot gravel surface has never been more enjoyable partly due to the cushioning.
Dry terrain posses no issues for GoRunUltra. Photos from Eugene 2ndSkin
The toe box and sockliner remained the same as the original. So it is really (this time) about reviewing the shoe/revisiting the shoe again. 
Road Test
Almost 250km since I gotten the shoe, and likely will retire this on my Ironman Langkawi. I know the legs will appreciate the additional cushioning after the long day anticipated. 
Road test
Apart from the additional cushioning provided by the GoRunUltra, I've noticed that the new/refreshed material felt significantly cooler perhaps due to the lighter mesh on the top of the shoe. While I still sweat as much and the perspiration runs down to the shoe (as I run sockless and nothing soaks it up), the shoe doesn't feel sweat-logged and dries as quickly after I leave it for an hour.
If the shoe doesn't impress you with the technology, the color will
Similar to the original GRU, the toe box was more than generous without being overly roomy. I wear a triple-E wide leather/working shoe and those with similar predicament will know how difficult it is to find a shoe that suits you. Happy to report that apart from two other manufacturer (Brooks and New Balance), Skechers' range definitely caters for the wider-footer too.
Encouraged Mid-foot strike
The Skechers shoe promotes and help with the progression of mid-foot and forefoot landing/stride. More so after almost 2-years of unlearning and relearning how to run and keeping injury away, I am comfortable to say it comes naturally. So a word of caution if you are looking to change the way you run - the tools (shoes) is there to help, but you need to do most of the work (of landing correctly). Only then both will be in synergy. 
Runs are done mainly in evening as my Ironman Langkawi run will be after 5pm. Part of acclimatisation for the different heat and humidity. Make your training specific to your race.
Nite Owl Remain An Eye Opener
It is easy to see why. A short 30mins run outdoor before the end of day charge up the photo-luminescent material of Nite Owl and literally makes it glow like a road marker at night.
Not obvious under normal sunlight...until...
it goes into darker area
Friends with darkness, no less
As is from my phone camera
The lifespan of the Sole
The GRU sole has been reported to be fast wearing and that much is true. I've used both pairs of GoRunUltra and it has exhibit consistent wear at the sole. It was no difference when I compared it against my favorite GoBionic when I first got it about a year ago. It has passed the 600km mark (the GoBionic) and still in service for short (less than 30mins) run. The first pair of GRU has served me really well with about 400km mileage and still great - just don't take it out to tricky trails as the grip is not as good as it was; otherwise, it is still Go Like Never Before!

Note: This pair of Skechers GoRunUltra in NiteOwl variation is sponsored by Skechers Malaysia via collaboration with 2ndSkin Asia Athletes program. Thank you Skechers Malaysia and 2ndSkin! This pair is retails for RM449(men) and RM429 (women) in Peninsular Malaysia and available in all stores. Opinion in this write up is my own and not influenced by Skechers Malaysia or 2ndSkin program.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Sabah Adventure Challenge 2015 : Open For Registration

Sabah Adventure Challenge or better known as SAC is open for registration. I've raced this 3 times (once adventure/team and twice solo-paktorlogy with wifey) in 2011, 2013 and 2014. My races report is in this blog (check under "Adventure Races" Here).
My take on this?
If you can take off during Good Friday weekend (April 3rd to 5th, but expect to travel there on April 1st of 2nd), this is one race you should consider at least once in your racing life. 
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Official SAC Announcement
Photos from past SAC races between 2012 to 2014 from SAC Facebook page. 
The Adventure Challenge team are proud to announce that registrations for Sabah Adventure Challenge 2015 open later today from the 15th-25th August 2014 with early bird rates available only for this period of time for the 100km ultra trail marathon (solo) & 120km multi-sport category (duo).
Sabah Adventure Challenge is Asia's oldest established multi-day adventure race which sees a limited number of runners competing over a 3 day period on the Easter holiday weekend (3rd April-5th April 2015) from dawn to dusk (and in some cases into the night for those who are at the back of the pack) with camping and gourmet food at the campsite as well as an opportunity for competitors to mingle and mix with fellow competitors over a 3 day period...making it a truly special event and race experience with a mere 200 runners and multi-sport adventurers accepted into the event each year.
Early Bird Rates:
Ultra Trail Marathon (SOLO) RM500 per person which includes gourmet style meals x 3 days (D/B/D/B/D/B/L), transfers from Kota Kinabalu to the START line and back to Kota Kinabalu after the event, official 2nd skin event tee and 2nd skin finisher's tee, official finisher's medal and camping fee's at the race venue for 3 days.
Multi Sport Category (DUO) RM1000 per team which includes logistics support for your mountain bikes and gear, gourmet style meals x 3 days (D/B/D/B/D/B/L), transfers from Kota Kinabalu to the START line and back to Kota Kinabalu after the event, official 2nd skin event tee and 2nd skin finisher's tee, official finisher's medal and camping fee's at the race venue for 3 days.
Being the oldest boutique race in this country, you have the opportunity to sign up now with the early bird rates being available:
Submit your details to us:
NAME:
EMAIL ADDRESS:
CATEGORY CHOSEN: (MULTISPORT OR ULTRA TRAIL MARATHON CATEGORY)
GENDER:
Email us at info@sabahadventurechallenge.com to register and we will email you the confirmation email for your participation as well as our bank details so you can confirm your slot in SAC 2015.
Once again early bird rates close on the 25th August 2015 standard entry fee rates will apply there after.

Tuesday, August 05, 2014

Allan Lee : People Giving Fund Raising for Less Fortunate Kids

This just in from my friend Allan Lee. He is raising funds (approx RM10K) for a home for kids in PJ. How he is doing is by running a 330km mountain race which he term as his toughest challenge in his life (and I thought him completing the 2013 Ultra Trail du Month Blanc UTMB was the highlight).

Allan is inspiring. He has completed long distance triathlon (Ironman) and long distance running (Ultra marathons). He was one of the participant of Running more than 2000km around Malaysia.

In support of Allan Lee and his noble cause, I am sharing his personal mission here and would encourage you to contribute or just pay a visit to his charity mission here.

Allan (left) with Seow Kong (another Ultra Legend from Malaysia) at UTMB 2013 with Jalur Gemilang. Photo from Seow Kong's Facebook. Thank you sir.
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About Allan Lee

Allan Lee Kian Hwee, or better known to the running community as Allan Lee, is one of the respectable and experienced ultra marathoners in the country. He is one of the founders for Malaysian Ultra Runners Association (MURA) and was instrumental (founder and organiser) and ran the successful organization of the inaugural Tour de Malaysia Run. He also organized the TiTi100 event in February 2014. He has completed in a lot of races but the most notable one is the prestigious Ultra Trail du Mont Blanc 2013 where he completed the 168km mountain race in 37 hours and 44 minutes.


About PKKCTM

Pusat Penjagaan Kanak-Kanak Cacat Taman Megah have been running a home for our children since 1992 and have come this far solely through the generosity of kind hearted organisations and individuals. The Pusat houses 130 children, with various disabilities; physical, mental and severely handicapped, apart from providing for disabled children, the Pusat also has around 25 ‘normal’ children from broken, abused or single-parent backgrounds.

They are committed to provide a stable family home and school for children who are abused, neglected, orphaned, troubled, poor and this from dysfunctional families. Being in a safe, clean and happy environment will ensure that the children develop and have an outstanding quality of life.

About Tor Des Géants

Tor des Géants is an endurance trail race which takes place in Aosta Valley, Italy, running along its spectacular paths at the foot of the highest Four-Thousanders in the Alps and through the Gran Paradiso Natural Park and the Mont Avic Regional Park. It is not competitive and provides for prizes for all participants who will carry out the path. The start and the finish are in Courmayeur. The total length of the race is 330 km which must be completed with a maximum time of 150 hours. There are 43 refreshment point in which the runners can eat, sleep and, if they need, medical care. There are also 7 life base, which are bigger than refreshment point and are placed about every 50 km.

Because of its difficulty, many athletes do not complete the trail. Around 1200 volunteers are used to organize the competition. Due to the difference between the highest point and the lowest point, climatic conditions can be a difficult obstacle. As they travel, the competitors can find all weather conditions such as sun, rain, wind and even snow. During the tour, the runners cross 34 municipalities, 25 mountain passes over 2000 metres, 30 alpine lakes and 2 natural parks. The minimum altitude is 300 m and the highest is 3300 m. The total elevation gain is about 24000 m

The 2013 edition was marked by the death of the Chinese runner, Yang Yuan. During a descent, he fell to the ground and he hit his head against the rocks.
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