Monday, June 27, 2011

We ride for health

Human-Powered Health from solve on Vimeo.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

My Memorable Independence Day Run... Congratulations Road Revolution

My Independece Day 2011 run was one of my most memorable LSD runs since I started running. After almost four years of racing and training along Jones Avenue and Osmena boulevard, I have never enjoyed it as much as I did last June 12. Fresh cool air blowing against my back while trying to maintain an easy pace going up to Capitol from Plaza Independencia. Fresh? Yes, Fresh.

Last June 12 was not just Independence day for many but also a day of launching for the first ever Road Revolution. I am lucky to be part of that revolution. After all efforts exerted by the Road Revolution team and especially my cousin, Tara Rama,  they have managed to close the entire stretch of Osmena Boulevard and Jones Avenue until Plaza Independencia for almost a day. YES. Almost a day. One of the busiest streets of Cebu City. Closed. Why? So we, Cebuanos, filipinos and other tourists, can get out of our comfort zone and start walking. Have you ever had the feeling that you miss fresh air? Have you ever felt the need to travel away from the city to inhale that refreshing fresh air. Road Revolution saved you the trouble of traveling far and long. They made fresh air available for all of us “City People”. Traffic must have been bad, right? WRONG. I expected to be stuck in traffic going out to lunch but was amazed how traffic along Capitol area seemed like any other day. I guess people were aware of the closure and not left their homes or must have walked to get to the other side of the city. The event was a big success. Despite many doubting the need for the road closure because they had to walk A FEW HUNDRED METERS to get food or money, it only supports the notion that many are apprehensive or incapable  of change. Reaching out and stepping outside our own comfort zones seemed so difficult that we had to scorn such a marvelous event. But we are not disheartened. In fact, we felt the exact opposite. We will continue to push until everybody sees what we have to do to make our country a better and safer place. We need to be good examples.
We started our long run from Capitol area and slowly ran towards Plaza Independencia. I was amazed on how beautiful and peaceful the street was during the event. But I was more amazed with how clean it was. Apparently, without vehicular traffic, our streets would become cleaner. As I approached downtown area, I could not imagine how the Plaza looked like after renovation. Then I passed the Sto. Nino Basilica where crowds gathered to hear mass. It was quite a spectacle. Nearing the Plaza, I realized I have never been inside this landmark since I moved here from Iligan City last 1995. Then came the surprise of the day. Much like Singapore’s East Coast Park, the Plaza was clean, green and full of happy cebuanos. I circled the park twice to admire the scenery and ran back to Capitol to end my long run. As I climbed Jones Avenue slowly, I saw a lot of inspiring views. Families (Father pushing the stroller while Mother holding the older child) walking and taking pictures along Osmena Boulevard. Tourists, on their knees, taking photos of sights you do not normally see in this part of Cebu. Runners, walkers, skateboarders and cyclists enjoying the free and traffic free street. In my own little way, I felt proud to have been part of this event.

How I wish they would do this more often. Once a month would be good. Once a week would be great. Instead of going to distant places, I would rather walk, eat and stroll along Cebu City streets. It would be difficult. For sure. But once people adapt or accept this change and make it routine then it would not be as bothersome. On the next staging of the road revolution, I dare everybody to join and experience for yourself the feeling of truly being free.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Let the REVOLUTION Begin

This sunday, a new revolution awaits. Please support our campaign for better, safer, pedestrian and cyclist-friendly streets. Help us preserve our city's future. BE one of US!!! 

Monday, June 6, 2011

Priorities. Which is more important?

The Athlete in me screams “Cobra Ironman 70.3 Philippines!” while the Doctor in me whispers “Diplomate Exam”. I have laid off triathlon training for 2 purposes: (1) to let my bum right knee heal from Pes Anserine Bursitis and (2) to prepare for my Diplomate Exam. My weight has been fluctuating for weeks since I finished the Aviva Ironman 70.3 Singapore last March. With no target races planned until December, I have been doing minimal run training of only 15-20K a week. My bike training is as unpredictable as the wind. Swimming is always a joy since I can just hang out at the pool (and not swim) and call it an easy swim. My team mates from Team Reborn are starting to get used to me skipping team workouts. “I am in recovery” I explained. “A Loooooong Recovery”.
A few months back, I joined this contest I saw in Facebook where the winner will be given a free 2011 Cobra Ironman 70.3 Philippines registration and represent their product in the event. The company was looking for health enthusiasts who can write/ blog about the things they do when they train. Naturally, I joined. I submitted a couple of articles I composed before, during and after the last Cobra Ironman. I have never won anything my entire life and do not expect this to be my first time. I wanted to win but I was more realistic. So many filipino bloggers. So many runners. Very slim chance.
Then the unexpected happens. Last May 25, I got an email from the Contest with a subject that caused my heart to beat 3 times faster. It said in bold letters, “Congratulations! You are our Gatorade Ironman!” Yup. That’s right. GATORADE! I was ecstatic! But confused at the same time. This is the first time I won in any contest ever but I can’t accept the prize. I hurried to the gym (where my team mates are training) and asked for advice from my mates. All of them were happy but most of them replied “There is always a next time”. All of them reminded me to stick to my priorities.
With much hesitation, I replied to the Gatorade Email. I started my letter with a big “Thank you” and ended with a sad “No. I am very sorry but I can’t join this year’s race.” I have to be honest and explain to them that I have to take my scheduled exams on that month and I need to prepare. As much as I wanted to, I can’t accept the prize. Some other fellow may be wanting and deserving of the prize than me. I also mentioned in my reply that maybe they can extend to me their support when I join the 2012 Cobra Ironman Philippines. 
Happy and yet sad at the same time, I need to stick to my priorities. There will always be another race. I hope my good fortune will bring me favorable results during my upcoming certifying exams. I will need it.



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