Friday, February 7, 2014

Louis Garneau Women's Inceptor Tri Shorts

The Louis Garneau Women's Inceptor Tri Shorts are made to do three things: swim, bike and run. Made with Triline fabric, the Inceptor line does exactly what you want a versatile triathlon racing piece to do. Inceptor shorts wick moisture, dries quickly and have a micro fleece chamois for comfort on the bike and discretion on the run. A generous cut and multitude of sizes will have you comfortable yet looking like a pro in your first, second or twentieth triathlon. Get into triathlon with the new, exclusive Louis Garneau Inceptor line and see what a difference the right gear makes.

  • Micro fleece chamois
  • Drawstring waist
  • Leg gripper
  • Triline fabric
  • Stylish LG logos
  • Generous cut

Sizing chart:

Availability: Blue M
Price: RM130
Special price: Buy a matching LG top + bottom for RM250 instead of RM260.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

In the long run... tips for beginners attempting longer distance events

Marathon season is upon us and each year more and more runners make the plunge into the dark world of endurance running. However, many will ask, what does it take to train for a half marathon or marathon? What sort of investment is needed? The good news is running is a relatively low investment sport and all that is really needed is a solid pair of running shoes, a pair or two of technical running attire and time to train.

When I started running I only owned a pair of shoes and one proper pair of running outfit! Since I got a few questions on this recently, I thought I would write an entry to share.

What shoes to buy?

As mentioned above, buy a good pair of running shoes. I know choices these days can be overwhelming but go online and do a quick search and you will find that some websites provide really useful tips for finding the pair of shoes that best fit your feet and running style. I am a big fan of Mizuno and their website has a fantastic shoes fitting.

Mizuno precision fit:

Runner's World also has an incredibly extensive shoe database and every quarter they round up the latest shoes and review them.

Some runners do own two types of shoes. The daily trainers and the racers. The daily trainers are the shoes in which you pound out the miles in and the racers are shoes that you only use to run your races in. Racers are a lot more lightweight than trainers to enable you to perform on race day. If you are a beginner, you can run your race in your daily trainers.

Left: Mizuno Wave Rider 16, my daily trainer
Right: Newton Performance Racer, my racers

What training plan to follow?

Runners in general will try to find a training plan to follow. Most people will go online and Google for an online training plan but I will advise that you take the training plans offered with a pinch of salt. There is actually no "all-in-one" plan because we are all different. Use the training plans you find online prudently. If you are sore, take a day off. If you got sick and have to skip a day or two, then take those days off. Never try to replace days that you have lost. Move on to the next available training day. If the training plan suggest an 8km run and you feel unwell after 6km, then stop and take give yourself a break. Learn to distinguish muscle soreness from pain. You can continue if it is just muscle soreness but you MUST STOP if you feel pain. Training plan discussion in detail is a long post of its own.

What is an LSD?

LSD stands for long, slow distance and is paramount to success in long distance running. LSDs built endurance. The key to building up mileage on LSDs is to use the 10% rule. Never increase your LSDs more than 10% each week and you should only run one LSD per week, normally on a weekend.

Speed vs. Endurance?

The primary focus if you choose to embark on your first long distance running event is to ensure that you are able to complete the distance comfortably. You should not worry about time goals and speed as long as you know you are able to complete the distance within the cutoff time stipulated by race organizers. Worry about how fast you get there once you have gain some experience.

What to eat or drink during long slow distance (LSD) training?

This needs trial and error because everyone's body is different. That is why you need to start your hydration and fueling strategy even on your first LSD and slowly tune it from there. It is important to do some research of the run route and the drinking stations offered. It is also crucial to find out what sort of hydration and fuelling options are available for you. Find out how many drink stations are offered and whether water or isotonic drinks are offered.

Try to train with the brand of isotonic drinks offered by the event as you should never attempt to consume anything you have never consumed before during the event. If your race is in Malaysia, it should be easy as most events just offere 100Plus but if your event is abroad then that is more challenging if the brand they offer is not available locally. When running abroad, I do not drink the isotonic drink offered, I only take water and I fuel myself using gels.

We are now spoilt for choice as there are many brands of gels out there. Try them out during your LSDs to see if it agrees with your tummy. Some brands of gels give me massive stomach cramps after 10-15 minutes, I kid you not. Therefore finding the right brand is important. My brand of choice for gels is GU.

How much to drink? Most half marathon or marathon events in Malaysia offer a water station at every 5km. My advice is to drink at every water station. For newcomers, stop to walk and sip your drink. Do not gulp. I take a gel at least every 45 minutes of the run. That would mean I normally would only take around 1-2 gels for a half and 4-5 gels for a marathon.

What else to worry about?

Normally as the distance increases runners tend to suffer from chafing. This is when the skin that is being in contact with your shorts or singlet over a repetitive motion such as arm swinging, results in an abrasion. The cheapest way to counter chafing is Vaseline or plasters but there are fancy products out there like Body Glide or 2Toms. I use Body Glide personally because it was just one of those products that I started with since the beginning. I find Vaseline too oily and messy for me.

All the best for your training and see you around at events!

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

O2Creation Elastic Laces

Do you have problem tying your shoelaces?
Worry no more. O2Creation Elastic Laces is here!!
No need to worry about loose shoelaces anymore.
Highly recommended for runners and triathlete. A must have for triathlon and duathlon races!

Comes in assorted colours to match your shoes.

Solid colours (left to right): Fuschia, Neon pink, Red, Black

Stripes (left to right): Orange/white, Neon Green/white, Red/white, Royal Blue/white, Yellow/black

Price: RM26

Monday, July 8, 2013

O2Creation Tribelt

Tribelt by O2Creation is an adjustable elastic belt which allows you to easily snaps over the race number bib for your race day. The tribelt can also holds 6 gels, 3 on each side of your waist.

Tribelt eliminates the use of safety pins and damages to your shirt. A must have for race day whether it is running or triathlon.

Comes in 3 colours: Black/Red, Black/Pink, Black/Grey

Price: RM32

Alternatively, you can opt for the basic racebelt (without gel holder strap).

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Skins A200 Men's Sleeveless Compression Top

When the results depend on you pushing your muscles as hard as you can, you need all the help you can get. The A200 Men’s Sleeveless Compression Top uses scientifically proven engineered gradient compression to increase blood flow and oxygen supply to your core muscles and reduce the build up of blood lactate for better post-exercise recovery.

With SKINS products, compression and comfort go hand in hand, so you can really focus on your game. The A200 Men’s Sleeveless Compression Top incorporates a silicone gripper at the hem to stop the top from riding up, as well as an improved neckline for a better fit. And to top it all off, the cut around the shoulders has been re-designed for added freedom of movement.

  • 50+ UV Protection
  • Moisture Management
  • SKIN fit
  • Engineered Gradient Compression
  • Muscle Focus
  • Warp Knit

Size Chart

Availability: Black/Yellow S
Price: RM255

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Why the brick?

Most people come into duathlons and triathlons from a single sport discipline. They are either swimmers, cyclists or runners. There are very few pure triathletes. Duathlons and triathlons generally favour runners. The way these two events are set up, give runners the edge over swimmers and the cyclists. A good example is to look at ITU triathlons and Ironman events, where the the event is typically won on the run.

Running after two disciplines is tough. People getting off the bike often speak of a sensation known as "jelly legs" where you legs wobble as you descend off the bike and you feel your knees buckle under the weight of your body. The effect of "jelly legs" often prevents you from running well after the bike because your legs and hips are tight from maintaining a single position on the saddle during the bike. The way to counter this effect post-bike is to do what is know as the "brick workout".

A brick workout is simply a bike-run workout. I have had people ask me how long should a brick workout be? Typically, research shows that you need not spend too long running after coming off the bike for your body to adapt to the effects of the "jelly legs".

I do a lot of my brick workouts on a bike trainer as I feel the bike trainer allows me to focus on my cycling form and cadence which are very important. I am not a pure cyclists so I tend to embrace the multisport theory of slow twitch muscles on the bike (slower cadence, 90 rpm and big chain ring) and fast twitch muscles on the run. That way, I don't overexhaust one group of muscles. I understand that if you come from a pure cycling background, you will generally favour high cadence on the bike but do try the above system and see how it works for you.

Below I will share some sample workouts that I do personally when I am training a brick as well as some tips for beginners to ensure you perform well in your next event.

Sample brick trainer workouts (cycling in big chain ring):
20 minutes warm up spin
10 minutes cycling
5 minutes running
10 minutes cycling
5 minutes running
10 minutes cycling
5 minutes running
10 minutes cycling
5 minutes running
10 minutes cycling
5 minutes running
10 minutes cool down spin

The above brick workout teaches the body to shift quickly between two disciplines. If you are a beginner, start with 2 sets in small chain ring and try to work your way up to 5 sets in small chain ring. You can advance to big chain ring only after you have mastered 5 sets in small chain ring. DO NOT forget the warm up and cool down.

Sample brick workout (cycling in big chain ring):
30km bike ride
10-15 minutes run off the bike

Tips for beginners:

1. Do a nutrition and hydration "dress rehearsal" during your brick training.
This means, try to eat and drink whatever it is you intend to consume for the event during your brick training. It is a very good simulation for your body to adapt to that. NEVER consume things you have never tried before on event day. The results could be disastrous.

2. Train as close to race time as you can.
Try to train your bike and run as close to your actual race start time as possible. If you know your run will take place during a very hot period of say 10am, then try to do some simulation runs at a similar hour. Heat greatly affect our performance so you need to train your body to adapt to that.

3. Train in your race gear.
If you plan to buy a new trisuit or shoes for the event, then make sure you take them out on a few trial runs before wearing it for the event. Wearing new things for races can results in painful blisters or chafing.

For more in-depth information on brick workout, visit this link. All the best for your next event!

Monday, May 27, 2013

Compressport Trail Running Short

Introducing the NEW Compressport Trail Running Short; with Compressport Veino-Muscular Compression Technology and many other features made for trail running. Read on to find out...

Listing of all the features you can get in a pair of Compressport Trail Running Short

Front view of Compressport Trail Running Short. Check out:
1. Silicone Grip - the high waist (9 cm) and the Silicone Grip keep your back and body straight and offer a perfect sensation of tightness
2. Power Climb Silicon Grip - the silicone printing allows you to put your hands on your thighs without slipping (refer zoom-in photo below)
3. The quads (thigh) area is a Seamless Compression Zone. This compression section of the Trail Running Short uses a tubular microfiber knit without any seams for targeted compression

Power Climb Silicon Grip to help with pushing up during steep climb without slipping (zoom-in)

Back view of Compressport Trail Running Short. Check out:
1. Ergonomic pocket - made in airy breathing mesh, the pocket allows water evaporation and a quick dry. Design like an envelope folder with no zipper and no other closing system that might damage, it is easily accessible
2. Flat-lock seams - the Trail Running Short is assembled with the latest generation flat lock seams. Solid and discreet, they avoid any chaffing (refer to next photo for close-up of flat-lock seams)

Flat-lock seams prevent chaffing (zoom-in)

Size Chart:

Compressport Trail Running Short is UNISEX.
Available colour is Black.

Price: RM515