A Great 2007!

December 31st, 2007

I am feeling high.  2007 has been a great year for me.  I summitted Cho Oyu, the world’s 6th highest mountain, ran the Great Eastern Women 10k Run (clock my personal best), completed the Singapore Marathon, and finished an Ultra Marathon yesterday!  

Never in my dreams that I will ever run two marathons within a month.  This is really amazing for me, for I am not exactly incline to running.  

With an SMS invitation to join the Ultra run by my dear friend Ivy, just a few days before Christmas, I said “YES” to her without much hesitation, er…without knowing what I was getting myself into actually.  

To prepare for the Ultra run, Ivy, Serene and myself, we ran a 21km MacRitchie-Bukit Timah-MacRitchie on Christmas day.  To be more exact, Serene joined us for the 21km run just so that she don’t feel idling at home, and only decided to run the Ultra 2 days before. Super girl.  

The Ultra Marathon is organised by MR25. One need to run a minimum of 5 rounds to qualify for a certificate and a finisher T. We have proven that when you are determine to do something, you will make it! We did it! We ran 5 rounds at MacRitchie trail, other ultra runners did 6 rounds, some even clock up to 9 rounds. Kudos to all Ultra runners.

 ournumbertags.JPG Our number tags. 

ivyjoanne-after2rounds-21km.JPG                                                    Ivy and me, taking a break after 21km (2 rounds)

with-support-crews.JPG                                               Our best supporting crew! June and Karen.  They brought us power drinks & food like Redbull, Milo, Pocari Sweat, GU gels and Power Gels, raisins, buns …

serene-me-ivy-after4thround.JPG                                        Still looking good after the 4th round (42km)

serenelarry.JPG                               Serene’s the other half, Larry, he accompanied us for the last 2.5km.  Yah, ONLY 2.5km! ^0^ Still, the last stretch was less mundane with him around.  Thanks Larry!

thefinishers-5rounds-52km.JPG                                   FINALLY, we completed the 5 rounds, strongly, covering a total distance of 52.5km.  Clap, clap, clap!

afer5rounds-sereneme.JPG

sereneleong.JPGivy-withachickenpie-after5rounds.JPG

 withjune-oursupportcrew.JPG                                      June is trying to keep a distance from us, she said we stink! **bish**

I am happy that I ended this year with an ultra run.  As we usher in 2008, may happiness brighten your days, success and good health be with you in everything you do. 

I look forward to year 2008. 

Why Climb?

December 28th, 2007

joanne3.JPG

One cannot stay on the summit forever
One has to come down again.
So why bother in the first place? Just this.

What is above knows what is below
But what is below does not know what is above.
One climbs, one sees
One descends and sees no longer
But one has seen!

There is an art of conducting one’s self in the lower regions by the memory of what one saw higher up.

When one can no longer see,
One does at least still know.

~ Rene Daumal

World Record

December 26th, 2007

Effort only Fully releases its reward after a person refuses to quit ~ Napoleon Hill 

Congratulations to Swee Chiow.  Swee Chiow breaks the Guinness World Record of the Longest Journey on Skates.  He completed a distance of 4176km on skates after 66 days in Hua Hin, Thailand, on the eve of Christmas.

Here’s Swee Chiow’s greetings:

ksc_xmas-greeting_low-res.jpg 

Do you have the courage to pursue the dreams you once made?  Do not wait; the time will never be “just right”.  Go for it, my friends.

Rain Rain Go Away

December 23rd, 2007

This is the festive season, and a wet one often.  It has been raining these days and kind of disruptive to any outdoor activities.

The sky looks clear today.  So, I went East Coast Park with Karen & Ivy.   We wanted to finish a half marathon, but the weather did not allow us to do it.  Not that we didn’t like running in the rain, infact, we were pretty happy running in the rain.  What scares us is the lightning.  It kept flashing above us, though we know that it is a distant from us, the fear still sets in.   Well, Corrine was to run with us, but she was caught in the rain somewhere in Simei, she did not turn up.  Good for her 🙂 .

I could see many disappointed faces.  The picnickers were drenched, BBQ pits were soaked, camping tents collapsed to the ground.  Not a very happening situation to be in.

This is no difference from encountering foul weather in the mountains.  The rapid change in weather affects our climbing schedule, affects our plan, affects our progress, affects our mood!  When there is a prolong whiteout condition, fear engulf us.

I really have no idea how the weather will turn out tommorrow.  I am going to run in the morning, please keep the rain and lightning away!

Road Bully

December 20th, 2007

I am disgusted by how some drivers can be so ruthless towards other road users.

Yesterday, I encountered one incident at Lornie Road.  I was driving towards Farrer Road’s direction.  The incident took place at the entrance to PIE (Tuas).  While a cyclist stayed on his rightful lane, a car traveling in high speed filtered from the 2nd lane to the extreme left lane to enter PIE (Tuas).  Well, that reckless driver should have filtered much earlier, he was already driving on the island when he entered PIE.  Not only did the driver cut into my lane, he even HORN at the cyclist!  Mind you, the horn blusted for a good 2-3 secs.  Horrendous! 

Did the driver have to throw that deafening horn at the cyclist?  Whatever reasons he might have, there’s no justification to warrant such an act.   

I have witnessed how drivers can be so impatient to other road users.  I cycle on roads too, I appreciate drivers who kept a distance from me when they overtake.  And, I make it a point to do the same when I drive.

Let us share the road graciously.

Class 95 & Bikinis

December 14th, 2007

We were on Air today – the morning express on Class 95!  Thanks to Glenn and Carol!

Did you catch it? I did for sure.

Glenn was suggesting that we pose with Bikinis … this is hilarious.  It will certainly look good and attractive by Jane, Esther and Lihui.  I cannot imagine yours truly here wearing a bikini, I’ll scare everyone off!  I wonder what Yihui & Peh Gee would think about this idea.  Peh Gee will sure go crazy…

 I bet having Glenn in a bikini is one such great idea!

What Drives You?

December 9th, 2007

What drives me?  I ponder on it many times.  Has it been love, power, money, fear? A friend once told me that it is fear that drives her to accomplish what seems impossible to her.  I believe everyone is guided by different motivations, such as external pressures or rewards (which I doubt its effectiveness), or the forces that comes from within (Love? a kind of emotion?).  The forces within – I’ll call this passion – a deep personal interest.  I am a passion believer.

Passion gives me a reason to act and helps to motivate my action.  It must coupled with commitment and determination, as passion can be drained by many things like demanding competitions, lacking resources, negative feedback just to name a few.

My passion for climbing and the wilderness has bring me this far.  I would not say that I have accomplished much or even enough, all I want is, for this passion to be channelled to  new outlets. And I must say, with conviction, it is never too late to find your passion. 

 So, what drives you?

Run & Trek

October 23rd, 2007

The GE 10k Run

Took place on 21st Oct, Sunday

My race actually started from the car park next to the old ACM.  After securing a lot, I dashed my way towards the Padang.  I was relieved to see many ladies still strolling into Padang and was thinking “wow, these ladies are late too?” Then I got to realise, they were in for the 5km run to be flag-off at 8.30am :p

At the start line, the time clock was already reading 3:23 … I was late for the 7.30am flag-off.  Hurriedly, I ran passed the start line, pinned up my number tag, took big strike hoping to catch up with the main pack of the runners.  That morning had been raining,  the rain stop in time for us, hence the weather was quite cooling. 

Along the way, I met Nisah and Julie (both are avid adventure racers).  The duo were enjoying their run when I greeted them.  Amazing ladies they are, they could sing and run at the same time, which they would normally do so too at adventure races. I wondered what the other runners were thinking while they were grasping for air to keep in pace, the two big lungs ladies were singing in tune with a steady strike *grin* 🙂

My watch read 18mins ++ when I witnessed the two leading runners zoom passed me after they U-turned at the junction of Mountbatten Road.  When the Kenyan lady finished at 33:44, I was probably still struggling at the 5th km! LOL

My run time: Gun time: 1:06: 24hr / Chip time: 1:02:47hr … there’s room for improvement

The people I met at the end point … Loyce (with OBS) who gave me water to drink at the finishing :); Jasmine, the petit & pretty adventure racer; Ros, a teacher also an adventure racer; Mike who busied ushering runners to return the Champion chips; Mrs Leong (my ex-boss’ wife) & friend; Raymond the runner/tri-athlete, he introduced me to his wife – Joanna; Nisah & Julie, the funning duo were queuing at the Osim booth; Jinella Chua (mother of one!) who left OBS for a teaching career; Wilfred of NYP (also formerly from OBS), the friendly students from ARC (Ngee Ann Poly) volunteering their time as officials even after organising an adventure race the day before …

Belumut Trek

Went to Belumut (1010m a.s.l.) today.  I really miss the tropical jungle treks in Malaysia.  I bet the leeches miss me too.  I got two leeches leech-ed to my legs, one on my left ankle, another on my right knee (they can crawl that high even with me wearing trek pants!)

Leech                                                    That blood sucker leech!

leeches                                                        The bloody stain!

Kluang                                                     At Kluang Railway Station waiting for the delayed scheduled train

Look forward to my next tropical trek, hopefully soon! Anyone keen?

World’s Longest Journey on Skates

October 18th, 2007

Two days ago, I met Swee Chiow at East Coast Park.  He had just completed his final training on skates, while I was preparing to start my long distance run. 

I am excited for him, as he is going to embark on another adventure journey.  He will attempt to break the Guiness World Record of the Longest Journey on Skates.  The current record is 4,175km.

Swee Chiow’s route, from Hanoi, Vietnam to Singapore, is approximately 6,000km.  He plans to do it in 100 days.  He is using this expedition to convey the environmental message of energy conservation.

Swee Chiow left for Hanoi this morning.

Swee Chiow                                                                          Swee with his two kids Sheng Feng (left) and Sheng En (right)

Wee Leng                                                                        Wee Leng (aka Mrs Khoo) with daughter Sheng En < wee leng will be joining swee chiow in Hanoi to give him her fullest support:) >

Joanne                                                                            A photo with Swee Chiow

Supporters of Swee Chiow can track his daily progress throughout the 100-day journey by visiting his website at www.daretodream.com.sg

I wish him best of luck and a safe journey.

Back to basic

October 17th, 2007

feelingblue.jpg

Feeling blue today. 

My laptop failed on me!

Our life is such that we depended so much on all these electronic devices, that we became so reliant on it.  PCs, laptops, mobile phones, PDAs … once it fall sick, we have to nurse it before it decided to call it quit. Then we found portable hard disk, backup datas with it. Be a little more kiasu, backup hard disk with another hard disk… Then you realised the backup datas are not at all up to date LOL :p

Handicap.