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January « 2013 « Mathieu O'Halloran's Blog

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Archive for January, 2013

Subic International Half Marathon race report.

Monday, January 28th, 2013

Hey all – my 2013 racing season has already started last weekend @ the Subic International Marathon which is organized by the Extribe group where me and Joyette competed in the 21k!

Start time was 5h15 am which meant that the majority of the race would be done in the dark with inconsistent lighting along the course. Im always surprised by the lack of humility by many of the local runners @ the start! I managed to start at the back of the front, just behind a Kenyan!

I tapped on his shoulder and said “habari asubuhi” which means “how are you this morning” in Swahili – he replied with look on his face “Mzuri sana” which means “im fine thanx” in Swahili.

Right after that, the gun went and I shadowed the Kenyan. I followed his line as we cut through the mess in front of us – slowly but surely, the jokers peeled off and then eventually so did the boys - then all that was left were the men.

At 3k the Kenyan would ‘make a move’ to catch the lone runner up the road as we got on the Argonaut highway. This then compelled a few to hunt him down – seriously?

From their running style, breathing and sweet running down their neck, I knew they would blow later on. Sure enuff @ about 5k I was in ‘no-mans’ land running down down a pitch dark road, all I could see what the police sirens of the lead motorcycle with the 2 leading runners as we approach the Subic International Airport – unlike the last 21k I had done here, we would go left towards the forest, which meant we had some hills to go up and down.

At the turn around, my legs felt tight but strong – my breathing was under control and I was maintaining a good rhythm – however as about the 14k mark I went through a bad patch…

My legs tightened up, my breathing rate increased and a few negatived thoughts passed through my mind…

Not long after that, I was passed by an older runner who appeared to be in the army – now this was the hardest part of my race, the point where I made the decision to suck it up ad bridge the 20m gap to him.

This allowed me to open up my stride, clear my mind and focus on the present.

Considering he was an older athletes, I know he had ran with patience, had run miles in his body and would be able to outlast a younger runner.

My goal, stick with him until the last 500m and punch it home.

Well, after doing the ‘cat and mouse’ thing for about 3km on the way back on the Argonaut Highway, which consistent of several accelerations, deceleration’s and a bit of swerving out on the open road. His heels even knocked my knees a few times due to the constant speed change.

Once we passed the GodSpeed gate on our left, which was the last pedestrian cross-walk before the finish – I punched the pace and keep accelerating every 100m after that. I took one quick look back mid-way and saw had a major gap! So I keep the pace on until the line and secured 3rd place overall – the final pay check ;)

I dry-heaved a bit at the line and then had a well deserved sit until Joyette came across the line, 2nd over all female!

Well our times where not great, but it was a solid course, early in the year and in the middle of our 2013 X-Terra Philippines preparation.

This is one of those ‘I’ll take it performances’ that shows me where my level is at early in the season, gives me a good taste of pain and allows to be reverse my race routine!

The race expo area was surely one of the better ones I have experienced @ local run races!

Matching much?

Joyette had a solid race - she ran down some 'pure runners' in the 2nd half to snag a 'bigger' paycheck than me ;)

Its always good to be on the podium of a run race with a Kenyan =)

I would like to give a special thanx to my shoe sponsor On Running – you  really have to try them, test them out for a few runs, especially the Cloud Racers to be able to give an opinion about them – they are really something else! They also attack a bit of attention for their unusual appearance, especially when worn by  podium goers!

Anyway, I will be in my old training base Subic Bay for the next week, getting some training  out in the open and then racing the NAGT next Sunday along side a few of my scholars and of course Joyette!

I like to use  races as a part of my for the bigger races – it allows be to re-hearse certain specific impossible to emulate in training, see where my present level is at and of course, get a good taste of pain!

Breakfast of Champions!

Wednesday, January 23rd, 2013

Hey all – I have been eating oats as part of my  breakfast for almost 20 years now! I have also seen many top TBB athletes eat it in a variety of forms like such as Muesli, Porridge or Oatmeal. I remember in 2009 when some athletes on the team did a pro Kona camp on Jeju Island where oats were impossible to find so the first athletes there had to get others to act like ‘mules’ and bring some in – ahahaha!

As a Canadian - its almost my prerogative to eat oats as I come from the 2nd largest producing country!

Now, who would argue this nutritional table? Pure oats are in fact are GLUTEN FREE but most mainstream oats are PROCESSED in facilities that also produced wheat, barely and rye thus, end up contaminated...

I suggest people eat Rolled Oats instead of ‘Instant Oats’ as they will give you a more even distribution of energy & give a more progressive distribution of insulin but take a bit longer to cook!

Yes oats by themselves dont taste like much – over the years I have evolve my bowl of oats!

Heres it looks like as of today:

-1 Cup of rolled oats

-Quarter cup of ground Flax Seeds

-2 Table Spoons of Muscovado Sugar

-Half  cup of Fresh Alaska Milk to cool it all off and increase the viscosity

-1 diced Banana

-A couples dashes of ground Cinnamon

Now, this takes about 7-8 min to prepared/cook with hot water and contains a great deal of nutrients to get anybody going in the morning as well to make them ‘regular’ later in the day ;)

Cheap, easy to use and highly potent in nutrition.

I would classify flax seeds as a ‘supper food’ as they have so many health benefits such a lowering cholesterol, lowering blood pressure and reduce internal inflammation! The also contain Omega 3 Fatty Acids which are key in balancing Omega 6 Fatty Acids as they are often OVER eaten in modern diets.

Yes, to many Omega 6 Fatty Acids (various meat/oils/dairy products) can increase susceptibility to various  cancers, diseases, make asthma and arthritis worst…

The key, is to of course, like many things in life, have the right MIX of Omega 3 and 6 Fatty Acids.

Eating flax-seeds and fix on a regular is a sure bet, just make sure they are grounded because if eating them as a whole seed will not be digested as they are so small and they will simply appear whole in the toilet bowl! Lastly, cooking flax seeds to hot or to long will damages its nutritional value…

Last but not least – I enjoy Muscovado sugar on more than a few things as its a great alternative for sweetening as its minimally refined, it maintains many of its dietary vitamins and minerals – make to mistake, its not a ‘heath food’ but rather more beneficial than typical refined sugar!

Its actually very popular here in the Philippines and used in many traditional recipes and is readily available almost anywhere – its dark, rich and moist texture make it a bit tricky to use in cooking as its not very cohesive compared to white sugar…

Anyway, bellow are a few pics of what a typical mid-morning snack looks like for me!

Ready - Set - Go!

Now the 'cooking' phase - doesn't look very appealing does it?

Mixed and ready to eat - look how cohesive this bowl of goodness is!

DONE - ready to start the day!

Anyway, thats it for now – as always, I hope you have learned something from this post =)

Year 27.

Thursday, January 17th, 2013

Hey readers – well today I am 27 years old!

I cant say I feel like im 27 – my stiff lower back and receding hair make me feel like im 37, then on the other hand my irregular hissy fits and youth full enthusiasm often makes me appear like a 17 year old so its like my 37 year old body and 17 year old mind both meet half @ 27 years old ;)

I remember when I turned 25, it felt special, quarter century made me feel like I was starting true adult-hood. But 27 feels a bit in-different – I dont feel like getting married – I dont feel like buying a house – I dont feel like having kids.

Just feels like im still allowed to be immature and do the occasional mistake!

I can believe that I have achieved more than 99% of 27 year olds out there but I not enuff of a ‘phenom’ to allow me to sit back and think I have ‘made it’…While I do boast a miscellaneous arsenal of talents and abilities – I know I must keep grinding away @ my duties for the next few years if I want to earn a legitimate legacy or a Wikipedia page ;)

On a day-to-day basis I take order and I give orders. The list of those who give me order’s is quite short and the one’s I give orders to is steadily growing =)

Now, looking back @ my 26th year – I can say it was by far my best year where I was able to achieve something special where I have struggled in the past: CONSISTENCY. Something that can trump a lot of better qualities in the long run or in the bigger picture!

For my 27th year, my only objective is to make it 1% better than the my past year!

Well, I did feel like swimming 100 X 100 or running 27 miles or any other wacky birthday stunts a lot of athletes will do  or that I have done in the past – I just want to spend a relaxing day – I want to spend time with people who are close to me, as they are the ones who get neglected when I am in ‘work mode’ 364 days a year.

Bellow is a  little piece I read in a 2009 newspaper about those born on January 16th – I think its pretty spot in!

Your dignified and creative, but your also a ball of energy! One part of you likes a structured system wit h lists and a regular schedule , but another part of you is completely spontaneous. You value learning, and your open to socializing with all walks of life. People love your enthusiasm!

I share my birth-day with these famous people:

Kate Moss John Carpenter Roy Jones Jr. Bayinnaung Sade Francois De Vendome Maik Petzold Drew Arellano

Anyway, thats about it – some memories I have from  my birth-day back in Canada, it always followed the holidays, back to school and it was always freezing cold so there was never any huge party’s cause everybody was in a frugal  mode…

Well at-least now the weather is very different here in the Philippines 8)

Here are some pics from my casual b-day:

Joyette made me Toblerone Chesse Cake which I dug-in @ around 8h30ish am after my long/hill/off-road run!!!

Fresh cake goes hand-in-hand with fresh milk to wash it down =)

Lunch @ Dad's Ultimate Buffet - for 555 pesos (13$ US) you can eat all you can from around 200ish dishes - I of course mainly stuck to the Sushi stop and ate what is worth about 100$ CDN back home!!!

Freshly made stir fried noddles - ITS MORE FUN IN THE PHILIPPINES!!!

Limitless deserts - ITS MORE FUN IN THE PHILIPPINES!

Umm somebody need to re-load this Tempura and fried Asian cordon bleu (my name for it)!

My lunch mates!

I finished the day off with a massage and a few Tanduay Ice!

For the record, the Yellow T-Ice is my nw favorite flavor =)

Yes, those are so are called ‘lady-drinks’ – hehehehe!

New Years On Mindoro Island!

Wednesday, January 2nd, 2013

Hey readers – me, Joyette and part of her family traveled to Mindoro Island to celebrate new years as well to get in some mountain bike ridding in a new location near Mamburao and Paluan!

The welcoming view once we got off the "RORO" ferry boat!

Joyette's family owns a very nice 'cottage-house' on a large piece of land!

We where shown around my the local bike group in Mambuaro!

It was all pretty casual ridding for me and Joyette!

The power-lines shown here on the left-hand side where the latest addition to this desolate region where "Tito Plops" was one of the big players! As you can see, these are roads that will eventually be paved down the road!

We rode along side countless rice fields!

We also passed by this nice lap pool in the middle of no-where!

Joyette ridding over a suspension bridge!

The bike group @ our breakfast stop!

We had a coffee and pandesal @ this beautiful resort in the middle of now-where!

This beach just went on fore-ever along the coast-line!

Our guide here Tito Plops on his first MTB ride in 1 month and first ever on a 29er!

This big here was reluctant to follow his owner cause he new he would be turned into Lechon!

Later in our ride with stopped near a 'sari-sari' store where the 'Lechon-process' was going to plan!

Ridding inside an old river bed!

Ridding through corn fields!

The step uphill road going towards the wind-mill!

The view from the summit is worth the effort!

JUMP SHOT!

The view as we head back down!

A solid ride requires a solid snack!

Joyette with the Crocodile head on the last sun-set of 2012!

Fishermen working quick before the sun-set and the years ends.