4 Reasons Why Runners Should Try Spinning

Spinning is an indoor workout that is accomplished on an immobile bicycle that helps in maintaining your fitness. This workout is suitable for athletes of all ages. Spinning is a good way to exercise both your body and mind. The spinning vehicle comes with an adjustable seat, handle, bars with gears, and normal pedals. It also comes equipped with a heartbeat monitor and a knob to adjust the speed of your spins. The best gear for the workout is a pair of cotton socks, shorts, shirts, and the appropriate footwear.

Next is a look at some of the reasons why you should add spinning to your routine exercise.

High-Intensity Training with Folding Bikes

Basically, spinning is an interval training. This is because it offers substantial cardiovascular boost and helps burn a lot of calories, especially when you change position or increase resistance and pedal speed.

It is also a high-intensity training method. This is because the majority of classes are group-based; a feature that will allow you to push yourself beyond your presumed limit because of the energy of those around you. The intense sessions and the added motivation from other classmates, the spinning instructions like those provided by Josh Taylor, a master spinning instructor, high tempo, and an elevated energy soundtrack can also give you a mental boost. This will also serve to re-energize your exercises.

Spinning has a great metabolic effect because it works some of the largest muscles in your body simultaneously. This also means that your body continues to burn calories for some time after the sessions.

Just like with the folding bike options, spinning vehicles come with adjustable modes that allow you to mimic an outdoor ride on a bicycle. You can check out reviews and demonstrations by Jim Roose, a former powerlifter. This means that you can train your anaerobic and aerobic systems, as well as activate your fast and slow twitch muscle fibers. The bottom line is that you will be able to run faster and stronger after a few spinning sessions.

Full Body Workout

Despite a huge number of people thinking that spinning is a cardio exercise only, the benefits go way beyond that. An entry level spin will challenge you in a way that will help strengthen your posterior chain and abdominals, which is attributable to the different adjustable resistance levels that you can use. This allows you to build off what you have gained and also prevents you from hitting the plateau.

Spinning can also be a very beneficial exercise, especially if you suffer from hip, knee, and ankle problems. In fact, pedaling against the resistance provided by the spinning machine pedal works the leg muscles way harder as compared to the running strides. In other words, the exercise conditions the hamstrings and quads of your legs, which results in greater muscles. This translates to a better running economy.

Spinning exercises are also good for runners who live in flat localities since they provide a hill like training that most people struggle to get. They are also good starting options for runners who may have stopped exercising due to previously sustained injuries. If you are suffering from muscle imbalance, the spinning bike exercise will come in handy because there is no need to lean on the bike to turn. Exercises that are done on a spinning machine helps to correct muscle imbalances and also reduces the risk of injuries.

Mental Benefits and Reducing Burnout

According to studies, people who exercise regularly have reduced stress levels as compared to those who do not. Exercises with cardiovascular workouts increase the production of endorphins, dopamine, and serotonin, which help to boost your mood, increase stress resistance, relieve anxiety, and banish the blues. After the exercise, most people experience a great feeling called runners high. Adding a spin session to your daily exercise routine will help to keep down the burden of repetitive physical impact while reducing training monotony and mental burnout.

Reduced Impact on Injuries

Spinning exercises give runners an option to stay away from high impact training, which reduces the chances of overuse injuries without omitting a high-intensity workout. This is because, with spinning, you can exercise most of your muscles without stressing too much load into the weight-bearing joints.

If you integrate a few spinning sessions a week into your training exercise, you will be taking advantage of the benefits that come with high-intensity training. You will also be able to take a prolonged load off of your injuries. This becomes very useful particularly when you are scheduled to have a hard run, yet you have tight muscles or a minor niggle. A spinning vehicle is also very a good option when you are in an injury rehab.


Even though there are spinning machines with portable folding bike alternatives that make spinning exercises feel like an outdoor bike ride, but they should only be used for a few sessions a week. Not only do spinning exercises complement your running but they also help in maintaining your cardiovascular fitness. Utilizing the spinning machine can be a good option for runners who need to keep fit even when they are undergoing an injury rehab. It is also a good exercise to start with if you had stopped exercising due to an injury.

Image source: Pixabay.com


The One Mistake Most Runners Make – And It Has Nothing To Do With Your Legs Or Feet

Running efficiency is a much neglected element of running. We runners spend so much time trying to improve our speed and endurance but we tend to neglect this aspect – which is actually a very important element of running. With better running efficiency, we use less energy to run faster. Running more economically means you can run more efficiently with the energy you have – without the need to take a gel for more energy.

The one mistake many runners make actually has nothing to do with your legs or feet. It has actually got to do with your upper body form. In order to maximise the energy you use when running, you need to maintain good upper body form. It is very important to keep your core engaged throughout and maintain good arm form.

What is good arm form?

When people run, they either keep their arms really close to their body or let them go out to the side. Note you want your hands to be always swinging in the direction that you are moving in. Let your hands swing down to about hip level and comes back up. Make sure your elbow stays at a 90 degrees angle and you are swinging forward and back. This hand to pocket position can improve the stability of your body.

Basically when you see runners having a cross body position of their arms, this indicates a decrease activation of your core muscles generally. You would hence expand more energy when running.

Strength Train

One way to maintain good upper body form is to strength train. Strength training is very important. The longer you are into a run, your form starts to falter . Strength training helps prevent this faltering form. A strong core helps keep your body upright. So, the key is to ensure your muscles and joints are strong to prevent your form from faltering especially in the later stages of a race when your body starts to tire. So, do your planks, situps and even squats can help strengthen your core muscles.


Look Forward To Many Firsts At The Great Eastern Women’s Run 2017

Great Eastern stays true to being a LIFE company – helping women live well, stay healthy and feel empowered. Being committed to this cause, Great Eastern’s signature event is back – Great Eastern Women’s Run 2017 on 12th November 2017 at The Float, Marina Bay! Whether you are a daughter, a wife, a mother or a sister, grab as many friends and family as you can to join in the movement for female empowerment! Inspire your wife, your girlfriend or even your grandmother to run in the 5km, 10km or 21km race distances and make a healthy lifestyle their way of life.

New Mummy + Me Category

Runners can look forward to a number of new firsts this year, one of which is the new 2km Mummy + Me Category. This is for mummies to run with their daughters aged 7 – 12 years, and is an opportunity for them to have fun together and teach their young girls the importance of an active lifestyle. Girls 3 – 6 years of age can join the 100m Princess Dash, which is returning this year by popular demand, and receive a tiara upon completion of their race distance.

Who Thought Running 5km Could Be So Fun?

The 5km Live Great! Fun Run category will see the introduction of a slew of  exciting new elements and instagram-worthy moments.This includes photo walls for photo opportunities, a colourful ball pit to wade through, and the opportunity to win a diamond. This year, local jeweller Ivy Masterpiece will be coming on board as a partner of the Run, and three lucky participants will stand a chance to run home with a diamond solitaire. Approximately 1.5km into the run, participants will run through a zone featuring diamond photo walls and each participant will receive a serialised diamond wristband cut-out. Post-race, a lucky draw will be held at the race village where one 1-carat diamond solitaire and two 0.3-carat diamond solitaires can be won!

Dazzling experiences aren’t limited to the participants of the 5km. 21km finishers will receive newly designed rose-gold plated medal to commemorate their achievements. The 10km, 5km and 2km Mummy + Me race distances will receive an exclusive new gold-plated medal.

The Run Goes Digital

When you commit to a healthy lifestyle, you’re in it for the long run. It’s not just about race day, but also the also time, effort and determination you put in before race day to train. Imagine the satisfaction when all your hard work pays off and you cross the Finish line! This year, GEWR has launched a mobile app to track the klicks you clock in training for the run. The app has monthly challenges for participants to take on, and aims to encourage participants to go the extra mile for charity and receive attractive rewards.

GEWR Encourages Tertiary Students To Get Involved And Be Fit

People just entering the workforce often have trouble making time for exercise, so it helps to have these healthy habits in place beforehand! This is why GEWR is reaching out to tertiary students to promote the importance of health through running. Tertiary students will enjoy exclusive discounts and to make it more interesting, the school with the largest collegiate of female participants will be receiving some exciting prizes!

Run For A Cause

The GEWR is committed to the causes of the Breast Cancer Foundation and Women’s Health Research and Education Fund. Wear a tutu, buy a bib or customise your race tee and do a good deed for charity! The popular Don A Tutu For A Cause initiative is back this year for runners to display their support for charitable causes with a minimum donation of $5, where they will be provided with a tutu to don and show off on raceday.

We’ve Got Something Good To Share

Psst, we’ve got something great to share! All OCBC Great Eastern Cashflo Credit Card holders will enjoy an additional 10% off  registration fees for all categories when they register online.

Don’t miss out on these moments to Live Great. This year, the GEWR committee is really pulling out all the stops to make this a memorable day, so sign up and join the fun!


I Can Do Whatever I Want – Mexico Marathon Chaos

Up to 5800 runners cut the marathon course short at the Mexico Marathon. Reasons range from – just wanted to do a 25km long run training, to gatorade, to the collectible pretty medals.

Right from the start line, it is chaos! I mean where else in a marathon do you see 1400 runners in the elite coral? I mean we’re pretty sure there weren’t 1400 elites. Chaos is normal at any marathon scene but the Mexico Marathon really brings chaos to another level.

The gun goes off, but not all runners are at the start line. They totally ignored the startling and started maybe 10km down the course, some 15km down the course. Neither were all runners planning to follow course. Some took short cuts.

According to a local, this was a normal phenomenon. This year though, a staggering 20 per cent of runners were disqualified for not following the course. They did not cross timing mats, or well, crossed them in the wrong order. Many runners use the race as a training long run. These people meet in groups and just hop on to the course. Technically they aren’t trying to cheat for a better timing to qualify for the Boston Marathon or anything. They just want to train. At 650 pesos, it is inexpensive for them to use this as a training run.

Photo Credits: Juan Enrique Granados

Some do it for the medal. 6 years ago, they launched medals M-E-X-I-C. It would be the final year for the O next year. I mean if you’ve started the collection, you need to have all 6 don’t you? Here’s to hoping that people would stop the chaos after next year.

The response has largely been well, I’ve paid for my bib so I can do whatever I want!


5 Key Rules To Follow To Being A Better Runner

We all want to be better runners. Here are 5 simple key rules to follow to be a better runner!

#1 Add Variety To Your Runs

If you want to be a better runner, you can’t just go out and run for as long as you can or as fast as you can. Well, you may be able to improve to a certain extent, but if you want to bring your running performance to the next level you need to add variety to your workout. There are different types of runs – the tempo runs, the speed workout, the recovery run, the long run and hill repeats. Click here for a detailed description on the different runs.

#2 Schedule REST days

It cannot be stressed enough how recovery is part of training. You must schedule rest days. It is only when you rest and allow your muscles to recover that your muscles become stronger. If you do not schedule rest days, you risk overtraining. Overtraining can lead to you feeling sluggish and consequently a plateau or even decline in progress.

#3 Do not eat a huge meal after a workout

I know – it is tempting because you deserve that burger and pizza and fries and maybe a coke as well. But it is important to refuel ourselves well with good building blocks to allow our muscles to recover. A meal with a good amount of protein to help the repairing of our muscles would make a good post-workout meal.

#4 Don’t forget the warmup

Remember to always warmup before heading out for a run. It’s easy to skip it when we are pressing for time. But that 5 minutes could put you out of action for a couple of months maybe. Remember warmup stretches are normally dynamic stretches that brings you through a range of motion that preps you for your run ahead.

#5 Strength Train

Photo Credit: Muscle and Fitness

More often than not, our form starts to falter as you run longer. With strength training, we are more able to keep our running posture and from. The key here is to prevent your running form from faltering especially in the later stages of a race when our body starts to tire. This will ensure our body spends less energy when we run, and hence can hold a particular speed for a longer time – giving us faster timings. So, do your squats and planks!


Fun Run at Lunghi Run 2017 [4 km] (by KenJoe)

September is a lull month for my run ‘routine’ ie no races.  Having completed two marathons a few months apart with my first half marathon trail following soon after, amidst the 10 km races, and the TOGO817 (cycling 817 km in 7 weeks) it was probably a good decision too.

Then I had a message from Ali Akbar whom I knew from FB accounts, about the Lunghi Run.  He is one of the organizers and the creator of this event.   I did wonder about taking part.  As folks may know, I just don’t like to be too hampered with stuff when running, be it a smartphone, running hydration belt or even now, a lunghi (or sarong).  Still, it was also a charity run, donation going to MINDS so I signed up soon after.  I asked some of my running friends but due to the timing, only my other FB running buddy was available – Chia SY.  (Others were also in Sydney for the Sydney Festival Races.)  SY was coming out of a plantar fasciitis recovery.  Still, his pace was relatively fast for his age and for his injury (he went sub-6 min/km for this in the end).  It was a fun run anyway, so no pressure and we arranged to meet for the fun race.

Collection was a breeze on a Sunday at Telok Blangah RC.  Met Ali in person and had a wefie too.  I was quite surprised by the quality of the race pack – definitely value for money if you are the type who are careful with spending budget.  A lunghi was also in the package besides the usual tee sponsored by Compressport.  As the date draws nearer, I went on the internet to look for demo on how to wear the lunghi.  There is a number of ways.  But I took the easiest way.  I also learnt that it probably makes sense to just put the lunghi over yourself rather than try to wear it feet first like what most folks would do.  Now the only concern I had was, whether the lunghi would drop if I were to really run.  I would not know till that day since I didn’t feel like I could just practise it at the park nearby.

Race day was a Saturday afternoon and luckily for us, it was not too hot.  I deposited my bag after snapping a couple of pictures at Marina Bay.   A crowd of a few hundreds were gathering near the stage.  Understood that about 700 participants signed up for the whole event into its 5th edition.

Ali demonstrated the alternative ways of wearing the lunghi.  The first one was similar to what I saw on the internet which I adopted.  I just drew in my stomach, took each side and flip across and rolled the top tightly outwards and downwards.   It felt snug and comfortable.  Did some light warm-up.  Despite the demo, I realized looking at post run photographs, most folks did it their own ways.  Didn’t matter, it was for fun, and whatever works…

There was a dance cum warm up exercise routine going on and you could see lots of smiling faces trying to follow the movements.  Families, couples, singles, young and old folks with variations of the lunghis.  Soon it was time to start.  The race was flagged off with cries of Lunghi Lunghi Run. Most folks were happy to just walk.  Some started off running, and so did we.  It was a short run, 2 km to Marina Barrage and then back, making up the 4 km.  I did the U-turn a bit further from the volunteer but still, when I made it back to Finishing point, it was closer to 3.8 km.  SY had raced ahead of me, and then ran an additional couple of hundred metres to make it 4 km.

First time, I was probably one of the first twenty to reach the finishing line since most of them were still enjoying the scenic route and chatting.  On reflection, it was a bit strange, but everyone has his/her own idea of fun.  For me, it was running as fast as I could in a lunghi and feel the wind.  I wasn’t sure about SY but he was caught on cameras posing with his ready smiles and achieving his post recovery sub-6 min pace, perhaps.

Bananas and Pokka Sports drinks were provided at the finishing point.  We collected the medals too.    There were also many photographers for this event.  This was also the only race this year so far which I stayed back to witness the lucky draw.  A cheque for $6000 was handed over too to MINDS.   In fact there was also a surprise celebration with birthday cakes for those born in September, 5 designs for the 5 years !  SY was ‘thrilled’ to be interviewed by Pris Chew, one of the regular bloggers on running events.  He called me over towards the end.  Pris happened to be one of the September kids too so she went off to enjoy the cake with the others after a brief chat.

Running in a lunghi was definitely one of the most ‘fun’ races I enjoyed.  For its carefree atmosphere, supporting multi-racial theme more effectively than some that I’ve seen, in a more subtle way.  Some folks got away with awards for the most well dressed family, macho male or female dressing etc.   Next time if you want some short and good fun (or dress up too) while still having a meaningful ‘race’, or even just a stroll, then this is the race for you.

Certainly, the sentiments rang true for me as I remembered the write-ups when I looked up the objectives of the event initially.  “The Lunghi Runs have always been a non-competitive and non-profit event. Some runners even describe it as a ‘runner’s reunion’ and a ‘running festival’. But despite the laissez-faire setting, the show of solidarity, unity and charity is strong. And it will continue going strong.”

I have a good post-run coffee chat with my virtual running buddy, one of those rare occasions too, after a relaxed ‘race’.  Run Safe, Run Happy.

*This may also be a good time to stop blogging for a while as I re-evaluate how my efforts at blogging and running are going thus far.  Been a good experience for me as I share about the races I ran, albeit at this age and writing long-winded, as proper English as I could.  But perhaps I may still be back sooner than I thought.  Enjoy the runs in your life.


Interview With Ang & Celin – Couples Who Run Together, Stay Together

JustRunLah! : How will you introduce yourself to Asia running and fitness community?

Ang – Hi, I am Ang, I just want to run to keep Healthy and to eat my fav food.

Celin – Hi, I’m Celin Heng and I need to keep this mind – 3months will go by either way, so might as well work hard, eat healthy and exercise. I want to see what happens if I don’t give up.

JustRunLah! : How did you meet each other?

Ang & Celin – We bumped into each other at work 2 decades ago and we are married with a daughter.

JustRunLah! : When did you first pick up running (what age) and what inspired you to do so?

Ang – I started running for fun before army…..and i always run just to pass my IPPT. It’s Health inspired me to do so, if you keep exercising, 10 or 20 years down you will see and feel the differences.

Celin – I picked up running third quarter of 2015, I was 42years old and I was inspired by my sister whose is the sports woman since young. After running less than 3months without proper training, I decided to sign up SCMS full marathon to mark my “42years old , 42/42.125km”. I completed, it was my 1st longest run.

JustRunLah! : Your greatest reward from your sporting journey so far?

Ang – My greatest reward is that I make lots of great running friends, and also every morning when I wake up, I know that I don’t have to take any kind of medicine….just run lah

Celin – My greatest reward from running, I have loose my weight from 65kgs to 52kgs. What I’ve ended up with is a bunch of people running often while still eating all the stuff I used to eat. I sometimes use running as an excuse to eat things I’d normally try and avoid.

JustRunLah! : What is your mantra for when the going gets tough in a race?

Ang – It’s all in your mind. Just enjoy the process.( whatever sports you take up).

Celin – It never gets easier, you just get better. “Run To Eat”

JustRunLah! : One advice for aspiring runners?

Ang & Celin – Be in great shape and fitness that when others look at you they want to become fit too.

JustRunLah! : Finish this sentence: Fitness is…

Ang – Fitness is everyday affair, just enjoy doing it in whatever exercises or sports.

Celin – In running, it doesn’t matter whether you come in 1st, middle or last, you can say “I have finished it, there is a lot of satisfaction in that


5 Warmup Stretches For Runners

We runners love to run, but when it comes to stretching, it’s not really something we love. But we have to bear in mind, stretching can help prevent injury that could keep us away from our beloved sport for months. Warmup stretches differ from cool down stretches. Warm up stretches are more towards dynamic stretches which is a form of active moment that takes your body through ranges of motion. This will better prep you for your heard sporting activity ahead.

#1 Leg Swings

Stand one leg firmly on the ground and kick your other leg 90 degrees up. Keep your leg straight. Swing your leg back and forth and repeat on both legs. This is a great move to open up your hips and hamstrings.

#2 Side Leg Swings

Similar to leg swings, stand firmly on one leg and kick your leg 90 degrees up – but kick up towards your sides this time. Remember to repeat on both legs. This helps open up your hip area.

#3 High Knees

These help warm up your leg muscles and open up your hip flexors at the same time. Bring your knees up to your chest and then repeat on the other side. This helps gets your heart pumping as well and hence really allows your your body to warmup.

#4 Butt Kickers

Bring your right ankle to your butt with your left leg on the ground. Repeat on your other leg. This is a simple cardiovascular move that provides you a good warmup for your entire body especially your hamstrings.

#5 Walking Lunges

Walking Lunges really helps you warm up your quads. Repeat lunges 10 times on each leg. Your legs muscles will be seriously warmed up by now and you would be ready to go.

And there you go, 5 simple dynamic stretches for you before you head out for your run. You never know, these stretches could be what keeps you away from a nagging 3 months injury. Start stretching now! Don’t start when it is too late!


7 Stretches For Runners

Stretching is the most neglected aspect for a runner. Think about it, we spend often more than an hour running but stretching for what only 5 minutes? It is a really important aspect of training because it can prevent injury. I mean, what is the point of running for hours but to be hit with a preventable injury keeping you out from training for a couple of weeks? It’s good to have a stretching routine that you keep to.

Note that these are static stretching poses which are done after a workout as cool down stretches. Normally dynamic stretches are done for warming up. Stretching should be done gradually and held for approximately 30 seconds.

#1 Calf Stretch

Lean towards a wall. Keep one leg straight as you lean in towards the wall. You should feel a nice stretch in your calves. Remember to do it for both legs.

#2 Hamstring Stretch

Fold one leg inwards with one leg out straight. Point your toes upwards and reach out for your toes. You should feel the back of legs – your hamstrings stretching. Repeat on both legs.

#3 Quad Stretch

Stand on one leg whilst pulling the other to your backside. Grasp your ankle and slowly ease in into the stretch. Repeat on both legs.

#4 Glutes Stretch

Lie on your back and position your ankle on the opposite thigh. Grasp behind your thigh and pull it towards you. You will feel the stretch on your glutes! Repeat on both legs.

#5 Hip Flexor Stretch

This is one very often neglected stretch. Kneel on the floor on one leg with the other leg forward as above. Slowly thrust your hips forward whilst slightly arching your back. You will feel a stretch on your hip flexors and the front of your thighs.

#6 Groin Stretch

Sit with your back up against a wall. Bring your feet together. Slowly press down on your knees. Remember to apply pressure gently and ease in into the stretch.

#7 The Cobra Stretch

Lie on the floor and place your palms right beside your shoulders. Push up. You will feel abdominal muscles and chest opening and stretching.



Interview With Neyton & Rica – Couples Who Run Together, Stay Together

JustRunLah! : How will you introduce yourself to Asia running and fitness community?

Neyton – My name is Neyton Tan, also known in my alter ego as Spiderman. Usually you can spot me at races wearing a full spiderman suit, and I’m regularly accompanied by my lovely Mary Jane. I run with a group called Superhero Runners which is a very inclusive group of like minded people with the intention to improve themselves.

Rica – My name is Rica Sidharta and my usual running bib name is Mary-Jane Tan. I am a leisure runner and support crew for Spider-Man.

JustRunLah! : How did you meet each other?

Rica – We were actually colleagues. Because we worked shift hours, we ended up spending a lot of time together when other friends were working and that’s when we started doing sports together.

Neyton – I would say that we had many common traits and sports was one of them. We eventually completed not just run races, but also triathlon races together as well.

JustRunLah! :When did you first pick up running (what age) and what inspired you to do so?

Neyton – I started running since my army days, where it was compulsory to do regular 5k runs as part of training. I ventured into longer distances and completed my first marathon in 2008. Over the years of running, I began to venture into triathlons in 2013. Till date, I’ve completed 17 marathons and 3 half Ironman distance races. As I continue on my journey in running, I began to discover my alter ego as Spiderman, running distances from 5, 10 to 21km with the suit and do so to inspire other runners to run along side or faster than me.

Rica – I only started to run longer distances (> 4km) when I was 27. I used to hate running (til now I still don’t like it that much – haha). But I acknowledge the importance of running and Neyton has been encouraging me to do better every time.

JustRunLah! : Your greatest reward from your sporting journey so far?

Neyton & Rica – it’s motivating to see each other especially during grueling race. We always make a point to go at least for one overseas race together (either run or triathlon) per year.

JustRunLah! : What is your mantra for when the going gets tough in a race?

Neyton – “You are your worst enemy, beat yourself to discover the potential in you!

Rica – “Keep going. You can do it!”

JustRunLah! : One advice for aspiring runners?

Neyton & Rica – it’s really much easier to train together as a group than as an individual. I can only run for 4-5km when I’m alone before I got bored and stop but I can run much longer (and faster) with a group. Run better together!

JustRunLah! : Finish this sentence: Fitness is…

Neyton – every breath of air that you breathe in.

Rica – a lifestyle


Interview With Steven & Cheryl – Couples Who Run Together, Stay Together

JustRunLah! : How will you introduce yourself to Asia running and fitness community?

Steven – My name is Steven Ng and I’m 53 yo. I have been running seriously since 1994. My 1st race was in 1986 (during my university 2nd year), a 42.195km Penang International Marathon.

Cheryl – My name is Cheryl Tan and I’m 53 yo. I have been running since 2008. My 1st race was a 10km run (Mizuno Wave Run) at UPM

JustRunLah! : How did you meet each other?

Steven & Cheryl – not through any races/runs. We met through friends. We only race together starting 2008.

JustRunLah! : When did you first pick up running (what age) and what inspired you to do so?

Steven  – I have been running since my school days in Melaka. I feel that I can sustain running long hours naturally and I really feel good about it. At that time, there was no races and I have no target, just run for fun and I love it.

Cheryl – I started at the age of 44. I was not active in any sports before that (eventhough I was a volleyball player during my teenage days). It was because I have always wanted to do backpacking after my retirement. Then one of those day, my hubby said to me, “ How are you going to fulfill your backpacking dream if you are not fit? How to walk long distance/hours when we are on the trip? You will be complaining of aches right? Don’t count on me to carry you like a backpack yo..” And that got me started on my running.

JustRunLah! : Your greatest reward from your sporting journey so far?

Steven & Cheryl – We started barefoot running in 2011. Being able to transit into barefoot running together, and we have been barefooters ever since. We enjoy the runs/races together and we have the same group of running friends/buddies.

JustRunLah! : What is your mantra for when the going gets tough in a race?

Steven – Keep on going, just run lah.

Cheryl – Aunty, almost there, cannot run, walk lah, sure can finish one

JustRunLah! : One advice for aspiring runners?

Steven & Cheryl – If you want to pick up running, it has to be a lifestyle. Consistency is the answer, but at the same time must go according to your own body ability.

JustRunLah! : Finish this sentence: Fitness is…

Steven – equal ability in flexibility, stamina and strength

Cheryl – Feeling good physically and mentally.


Battle of the Lumens

This post comes in 2 contexts.

Firstly…. Running on PCNs at night these days can seriously damage your eyes

The northeast region of Singapore is one of the best places be if you want lots of pavement to run or ride your bicycle.  The Northeastern Riverine Loop alone is 18km of mostly uninterrupted lane, and that does not yet include going through Coney Island and the Waterway canal route.

So my runs and casual rides go through these routes, mostly on my weekday workouts in the evening or just the post-dinner walk.

Lately, I am running really short on my year-end mileage goal.  I put it on my lack (almost zero) of weekday run mileage.  I have a bunch of reasons, valid and lame, but one that really puts me off are the inconsiderate riders with their blindingly blue/white lights.

Most of these offenders are on e-scooters/PMDs, some are on bicycles.  Its almost as if one guy is trying to one-up the other.  “Oh yeah?  Well my lights are much brighter than yours!”

Don’t believe me?  Here’s a video of just one evening loop around the Riverine Loop.

I’ve gained back 2 kgs from 1 year ago, and I am slowly picking up mileage again to shed them again.  For my weekday runs when I lace up, I end up remembering scenes similar to this video, so I end up avoiding the PCN and just go running around my city block sidewalk.

These e-scooters and the super bright LED lights come very cheap these days, that I am sure many of the readers here actually have them.  If you do, please do not be like these guys in the video.  In the PCN, you only need to be seen.  Just a 1-2 LED blinker should be good enough to alert people from 300m away.

And if you have only those lights to use, then please point them DOWN.  Don’t point them level / head on.  Not sure what are you expecting, your light to turn the night into day?  Is it just like how you put up the flash on your camera to shoot a nightscape?

Unfortunately, even oBikes (stationless rental) have their lights pointed head on.  Gotta find their contact info to feedback this.

Again, you only need to let people know you are there.  No need to blind other users of the PCN.  Let’s enjoy and let others enjoy the PCN.

Secondly…. Here’s a cheap headlamp for you – Just $25 from the grocery!

I’ve had my Black Diamond Spot headlamp for a while.  It served me well for my trail runs which I always start very early in the morning on weekends.

I’ve been itching to buy a brighter headlamp than the Spot’s 130 lumens.  I was thinking twice though as these items, though not so expensive, are not that cheap either.  I need a very special reason to buy another lamp when what I have current still works.

I was at the nearby FairPrice grocery one time and the display for batteries have a new model of Energizer headlamps.  Their older models look more like work lamps for working on machines, but those that I saw in grocery looked a lot more like trail headlamps.

And they have 150 and 200 lumens version.  And what’s more, only $25 (for the 150)!

Here video comparing the headlamps.  The Energizer have a warmer tone.  Its a great alternative to more expensive lamps.


Have you ever accidentally turned on your headlamp while pointed into your face?  It hurts, right?  You’ll be seeing white spots with your eyes closed for like 30 seconds.

Aside from using them on trails, they’re also useful on PCNs.  There are some really dark spots where the lamps are useful, there are also times the park lights are off.

Also, by giving those e-scooter/bike users white very bright LEDs a dose of their own medicine by shining your spotlight into their eyes, maybe they’ll get the idea.


7 Tips For Your First Half Marathon

I know a half marathon ain’t a full marathon, but don’t be fooled by just the half distance. You do need to train for a half marathon. You can’t just wing it. You’ve got to train for it. Running a half marathon is different from say running a 3 or 5km. You can’t just go all out and hope to hold the pace till the very end. It is a different ball game altogether. Here are 7 tips for you for running your first half marathon.

#1 Get A Plan

It’s always good to have a training plan. Set a realistic weekly mileage goal and make sure you hit it every week. In running, consistency is always key! Be consistent with your mileage and you will see the results.

#2 Find Training Partners

More often than not, we give ourselves excuses not to go out for that run – too tired, too lazy, too many chores, too much work! With a training partner or group, we are less likely to come up with excuses. If we promised to show up to train together, we are less likely to leave our training partner hanging.

#3 Practise Your Race Pace

Have a target realistic goal in mind and practise running your race pace. This is to allow your body to be comfortable and for you to have a good feel of your race pace. Here is a simple guideline to find your race pace to train for.

#4 Practise Race-Day Fuelling

Remember the old saying – never try anything new on race day. So always practise your race-day fuelling strategy. If you’re going to take gels, try your gels during your practise long runs. Make sure you have your fuelling strategy nailed. If you plan to take 3 gels, try taking 3 gels during training. Try the brand of gels to see whether they sit well with your stomach as well.

#5 Don’t Skip Your Long Runs

Long runs are a very important component of training. Do not miss your long runs. It helps build your endurance for the half marathon distance, and also gives you that boost of confidence that you are able to tackle the distance. Your long runs can be in the range of 15km.

#6 Recovery Is Extremely Important

Overtraining can be deadly. Remember that recovery is part of training and you need to allow your body time to recover in order to reap the benefits of your training. Always remember to have rest days or do your recovery runs especially after a hard day of training.

#7 Trust Your Plan – You Can Do It

Always trust the process! Do not doubt yourself. You are stronger than you think you are. You’ve put in the hard work, now just enjoy your run!

Read More:

  1. Training for a Half Marathon – Find Your Pace
  2. Training For a Half Marathon In Malaysia – Here are 3 suggested routes
  3. Run A Faster 10km or 21km With These 5 Key Workouts 

Stronger – The Inspiring True Story of Jeff Bauman’s Strength Following The Boston Marathon Bombing

Back in 2013, the life of an ordinary man changed forever. STRONGER is the inspiring true story of Jeff Bauman’s life following the infamous 2013 Boston Marathon bombing. His determination and grit captured the heart of the city and the world and he became a symbol of hope. The Boston Marathon bombing touched the heart of every runner, but somewhere in this adversity, there was also a chance for strength. STRONGER is Jeff’s deeply personal account of his heroic journey after the Boston Marathon bombings which tested family bonds, defined community pride and inspired his inner courage to become stronger in the face of devastating adversity.

Jeff’s Story

Jeff was just an ordinary 27-year-old working-class man waiting at the Boston Marathon finish line for his ex-girlfriend, Erin. He was hoping to win her back and holding a big cardboard sign to cheer her on, when he saw the face of one of the bombers moments before the blast occurred, and then was caught in the aftermath. Just like that, he lost both legs. After regaining consciousness in the hospital, Jeff was able to help law enforcement identify one of the bombers, but his own battle had just begun. Imagine the physical and emotional rehabilitation he had to go through. Imagine how family bonds would be tested.

This film celebrates his relentless courage against unimaginable odds and pays tribute to the man who is the very definition of Boston Strong.


STRONGER stars Academy Award nominee Jake Gyllenhaal (Nightcrawler, End of
Watch), Emmy Award® winner Tatiana Maslany (“Orphan Black”, The Vow) and Academy Award nominee Miranda Richardson (Enchanted April, Damage). Jake Gyllenhaal plays Jeff Bauman.

The Face Of The Boston Marathon Bombing

Standing at the finish line of the 2013 Boston Marathon, Jeff Bauman had no intention of becoming a hero. But when a pair of improvised bombs exploded next to him, his life changed instantly. A passing photographer snapped a photo of the horrifying moment where Jeff’s lower right leg was gone and his left leg was stripped to the bone. Suddenly he was famous but not for the reasons anyone would hope for. There was so much struggle, so much vulnerability, so much pain, heart-break, trauma, emotions and challenges. Yet Jeff was a fighter, aided by Erin and the community at the Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital where he underwent his physical therapy.

Don’t Miss It

Catch STRONGER comes in cinemas on 21 September! Book your tickets and witness the story of a heroic man and the obstacles he overcame, with the help of his loved ones and his community, to get his life back on track.


Interview With Benjamin & Marina – Couples Who Run Together, Stay Together Interview

JustRunLah!:  How will you introduce yourself to Asia running and fitness community?

Benjamin – I’m Benjamin and have been in the sports scene for close to 3 years. Started off from running and moved on to mostly Triathlon. Hope you can find some motivation on my humble instagram @zxbenjaminxz.

Marina – Hi! I’m Marina Chen and had always enjoyed running. Running had led me to doing more in triathlon. I am goal oriented and motivated when it comes to what I set my mind on. Footprints of me can be found on my Instagram profile @marinagiggles

JustRunLah!: How did you meet each other?

Benjamin & Marina – We were first introduced to each other at 2XU full marathon pacing programme training and immediately clicked well with lots of crappy and crazy conversations. We are 6 years apart (Ben’s younger) and we didn’t think we will ever be together. Thus, we weren’t conscious of each other’s image in front of each other when we started off as friends.

JustRunLah! : When did you first pick up running (what age) and what inspired you to do so?

Benjamin – The age that I really got into running would be 21 years old. Back then, my brother’s birthday wish was to race alongside with me on a local event. Looking back, I am really happy that he had dragged me along!

Marina – I started when I was 14years old and represented my secondary school as part of the school’s cross country team.

JustRunLah! : Your greatest reward from your sporting journey so far?

Benjamin – Not only we found each other, I would say I found the courage to explore and be opened to various sports.

Marina – I found my husband. *grin*

JustRunLah! : What is your mantra for when the going gets tough in a race?

Benjamin – Impossible is nothing and race registration fees are not cheap :p

Marina – Do the best that you can and not end the race with regrets.

JustRunLah! : One advice for aspiring runners?

Benjamin & Marina – Anything is possible, it’s all in your mind. Endorphins can have you asking for more pain and join more races. Haha!
You only get tougher each time.

JustRunLah! : Finish this sentence: Fitness is…

Benjamin – …the product of stepping out of your comfort zone and persevere.

Marina – …for everyone! Take away self doubt and work on your designated goals. Anything is achievable.


Another Joy For Joyciline Kepkosgei – Smashing the 10km Road World Record

If you haven’t heard about Joyciline, she’s a big name! Back in the early of the year, she smashes 4 road World Records in 1 race. Joyciline ran splits of 5K in 14:53, 10K in 30:04 (previous record 30:21), 15K in 45:37 (46:14) and 20K in 1:01:25 (1:01:40) and completing the half marathon course in 1:04:52 – breaking the 10km, 15k, 20km and half marathon world records back in Prague!

Photo Credits: Athletics Weekly

And, she does it again! Kenyan Joyciline breaks her own 10km road World Records, dipping under 30 minutes. She became the first woman to run a 10km distance under 30 minutes off the track. The 23 year old ran a 29 minutes and 43 seconds at the Birell Prague Grand Prix to eclipse her previous record of 30:04 set in the Czech capital in April. It does seem Prague is her charm!

Note that the current 10,000m world record is held by Alma Ayana who destroyed the previous world record in Rio Olympics 2016. She ran a 29:17.45 on track. Road and track records are kept separately!



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* images are for representation purposes only