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To Stretch or Not?

Image from Wikipedia
When I was first involved in physical activities such as Running, Taekwondo, and Table Tennis, I never knew if stretching prior to the activity is bad for my body and will also be bad in improving my performance. What I actually know is that stretching is a must before any physical activity. I just get on with those pre-activity stretchings that are mostly static, and then some body parts rotation and isolation exercises up to sixteen (16) counts each. These were also our ritual in the Theater prior to doing our mime exercises which requires a lot of big and exaggerated movements for us to be able to portray the act to the viewers without uttering any words.

I lived with it for more than four years, doing static stretches before the physical activity and I never noticed anything damaging to my system, my body, nor to my performance. Even when I'm off from any activities, I got used to stretching every single morning as I wake up. That's the single activity that I can do everyday to wake my blood from the cold eve and seemingly hibernated sleep when I was still in Baguio.

My body got used to the routine of being static to active then more active. And in fact, I even feel incomplete and under-performed whenever I skip that stretching part. Running or playing Table Tennis without stretching first (even if I do some warm-up jogs) feels that my joints can't properly move to its full extent and capacity. Same goes with Taekwondo which really has a lot of stretching exercises that are required to have higher and powerful kicks and agile movements. The flexibility that I needed for Taekwondo and Theater-mime acting was developed through those static stretches. The agility and speed was developed through running and sprinting some hills in Baguio right after those static stretching. And the strength and power came from the push-ups, some weight lifts, core and leg exercises after the tiring morning run. That was when my body was still younger and stronger during my College and aggressive years.

Image from ImproveHealthInfo
But what is really the proper way to do before engaging on a workout and stress-demanding exercises? Well there has been a lot of debate about stretching. And on my search for answers, I stumbled upon this piece of article which I think, would be the proper guide if we really need to stretch or not. And what I learned why I never had any injury from static stretching was maybe for what the researchers found out about their "studies of stretching and concluded that the “detrimental effects of static stretch are mainly limited to longer duration” poses, meaning stretches that last for at least a minute."

In contrast, when I started getting back to running since a few years ago, I began to slowly let go of the pre-running static stretches and just do it after some warm-up jogs/runs when my muscles and joints still feels stiff, and after a workout as a cooldown activity to relax my muscles and cardiovascular. Stretching does improve our circulaton, posture, body coordination, and flexibility.

To give you more idea and probably knowledge about the proper time to stretch and if you really should or have to stretch, just follow the link below to find out and share your thoughts and let us all together re-learn. Make sure not to stop reading until you get to the fifth (5th) paragraph:

To Stretch or Not to Stretch by Gretchen Reynolds.

In addition, here are some do's and dont's of stretching that I've also stumbled from yahoo! to guide us on how to properly stretch.
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Brooks Run Happy 2

What: Brooks Run Happy 2

When: 03 June 2012 Sunday, 4:30 AM

Where: Bonifacio Global City, Taguig

Distance and Registration Fees:(until 27 May 2012)

   6K - Php 500.00

   12K - Php 650.00

   21K - Php 750.00

Registration Centers:

  • Runnr - B3, Bonifacio High Street, Taguig / 2F Trinoma Mall, Quezon City / 2F New Wing, Alabang Town Center

  • Toby's Sports - GF Shangri-La Plaza / GF SM Mall of Asia / 3F SM North The Block / 3F Glorietta 4

Bib Designs:

6K Race Bib

12K Race Bib

21K Race Bib

For more information, call: 0927-875-6671 (office hours only)
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Wetshop Newbie TriAthlon

What: Wetshop Newbie TriAthlon

When: 20 May 2012, Sunday

Where: Daza Park, Camp Aguinaldo, Quezon City


Race Formats:

Aquathlon races will follow the SWIM-RUN format.

Triathlon will follow the SWIM-BIKE-RUN format.

Team Relay Triathlon will follow SBR member 1, SBR member 2, SBR member 3 & SBR member 4.

Registration Centers:

TRAP Head Office - Room 101, Building B, Philsports Complex (ULTRA), Pasig City

Tel. #: 710-8259/399-6598; Mobile phone: +63-915-639-4233 (Fabie), Fax: +632-809-2713 or


WetSHOP - 2L Vmall Greenhills,

WetSHOP - 3L The Block SM North EDSA;

Al Terra Cyclery – Club 650, Libis, QC,

Al Terra Cyclery – Ortigas Home Depot, Julia Vargaas, Ortigas Center.

email: Mobile phone: + 63-916-504-6513

email: Mobile phone: +63-915-639-4233

email: Mobile phone: +63-917-886-6341

Registration Fees:

Adults Aquathlon – P 500.00 until May 5; P 750.00 (May 6 – 15)

Adults Mini-Sprint & Super Mini-Sprint – P750.00 until May 5; P 1,000.00 (May 6 – 15)

4-Member Team Relay P 1,500.00 until May 5; P 2,000.00 (May 6 -15)

Kids Aquathlon & SuperTriKids- – P 500.00 until May 5; P 750.00 (May 6 – 15)

Download entry form.

The fee will cover cost of participation, race packet, post-race refreshments, & a finisher's t-shirt.

Race Course Description:

Swim: Camp Aguinaldo – Daza Park Swimming Pool

(T1) Swim to Run Transition for Aquathlon, Swim to Bike Transition for Triathlon - Camp Aguinaldo – Daza Park parking lot

Bike: Camp Aguinaldo – Road Network west of Daza Park

(T2) Bike to Run Transition for Triathlon - Camp Aguinaldo – Daza Park parking lot

Run: Camp Aguinaldo – Road Network east of Daza Park

Finish Line: Daza Park parking lot

Race Rules:

- Body marking (race numbers) must appear on both upper arms and both legs.

- Bare torso running is NOT allowed.

- Participants must wear sponsors swim cap.

- Roads will be closed to vehicular traffic.

Triathlon Relay Race Rules:

For more information, visit:
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Bicycle Seats and Numbness in Male and Female Cyclists

by Dr. Gabe Mirkin, M.D.

Several studies have shown that male bicycle riders can become impotent from pressing their genitals against a bicycle seat. A study from Yale showed that compression from a bicycle seat can cause loss of feeling in a woman's genitals (J Sex Med 2006;3:1018-1027). Now, a new study from Yale shows that the lower a woman sets her handlebars, the more she bends forward and the harder she presses her genitals against the bicycle seat to cause this loss of genital feeling (J Sex Med, published online March 5, 2012).

Women who suffer the most genital numbness set their handlebars below the height of their seats. Riders set their handlebars low to lower their bodies so they can go faster. More than 60 percent of the force you press on your pedals is lost by the air resistance against you and your bike. So, to go faster, you make yourself lower and narrower.

Most bicycle seats have a round back portion to support your buttocks and a narrow nose in the front. While genital

discomfort during long rides is very common among bicycle riders, it is uncommon in professional bicycle racers. Experienced bicycle racers know how to choose and adjust their seats to prevent discomfort when they ride. They usually:
  • set the nose level with, or slightly higher than, the back of the seat;
  • adjust the height of their seat post so that they never straighten their knees during pedaling;
  • chose a seat with just enough padding to prevent discomfort and width to support their buttocks.

Noseless bicycle seats cause little or no genital discomfort, but racers cannot use noseless seats because they need to press on the nose with their inner thighs to control the bike. A noseless seat also forces riders to increase pressure on the handlebars, increasing their susceptibility to hand numbness.

IMPOTENCE: Impotence is most commonly caused by nerve or artery damage. Exercising regularly helps to keep arteries healthy, so bicycling helps to prevent impotence, as long as it does not damage the local arteries and nerves. Three percent of regular male bicycle riders become impotent, and virtually all of them felt pain or numbness before the problem occurred. When a nerve is pinched or the blood supply to the penis is shut off, a man feels numb. Men who ride with conventional bicycle seats and do not feel numb are not likely to be at risk for impotence. If you feel no discomfort when you ride, keep on riding.

Half of the penis is inside the body and the main blood supply comes from the area just behind the scrotum and in front of the rectum. So bicycle seats that press on that area can cause impotence, while those that do not have a nose and have a widened area to hold your weight on your sitz bones should prevent the problem. Some seats have holes in the middle; the theory is that if there is no pressure behind the scrotum, there will be no numbness.

  1. Avoid seats with excessive padding. The greater the padding, the deeper you sink into the saddle and the more likely you are to feel numbness.
  2. Use a gel saddle that is not too hard and not too soft.
  3. Do not tilt the saddle nose downward. The seat should be level or angled slightly upward.
  4. Set your handlebars higher to reduce how much you bend forward. The lower you bend, the greater the pressure on your perineum. However, sitting upright increases wind resistance and will slow you down.
  5. Change positions and stand often while you ride.
  6. Wear thin padding in your pants. Most good bicycle pants come with form-fitted chamois padding.

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Balega Socks Now Available in Riovana

One of the premiere socks brand from South Africa has recently landed in the stores of Riovana: Balega. Taking its name from a Zulu word which means "to move with speed", Balega socks are popular among runners and enthusiasts alike who want nothing short of the best when it comes to running socks. Technically superior and designed for high performance, Balega socks draw its inspiration from the rich culture of South Africa. Balega's soft thread performance socks offer runners that most comfortable experience by reducing the impact while increasing the cushioning effect at the same time. With dynamic air conditioning fabric system that offers low moisture absorbency and excellent fabric resistance that allows the socks to maintain its peak performance through the years make Balega socks a must-have for any runner or enthusiast alike who wants to grow in harmony with the sport.

Get that heightened running experience with the right pair of socks that offers speed, stability and utmost comfort. Only from Balega.

Visit Riovana at the Ground Floor of Active Fun Building 9th avenue corner 28th street at the Bonifacio Global City, near Honda BGC and at the 3rd Floor of  Regis Center Building, Loyola Heights, Quezon City in front of Ateneo De Manila University.

For more details, please visit
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Runner’s World Philippines Celebrates Its First Anniversary

Runner’s World Philippines celebrates its first anniversary with the April-June issue themed as the Weight-Loss Special. “As we look forward to more years down the road (and trails), we hope to give you even more training information, nutrition, up-to-the-minute studies, and uplifting stories to keep you running stronger and longer,” says Runner’s World editor-in-chief Marie Calica in her Editor’s Letter.

As the anniversary issue of Runner’s World Philippines trains the spotlight on the link between running and weight-loss, the issue also highlights the significance of focusing on what you eat when it comes to shedding those excess pounds. Featuring the article “Golden Rules of Weight-Loss”, these road-tested key nutrition principles will help you overhaul your eating habits and slim you down for good.

While running keeps you fit, healthy, and happy, more running-related injuries can also be incurred. Runner’s World Philippines gives you 10 time-tested principles by sports-medicine experts to teach you how to stay injury-free for more years to come. A simple change in the routine like knowing your limits, shortening your stride, and stretching the back of your legs are some of the principles you will learn in this feature.

In the anniversary issue of Runner’s World Philippines, find out interesting running facts and idiosyncrasies in the article “The Best of Running” as it features facts like the top distance runner in history, inventions that changed the way we run, the best running-inspired movies, the most popular Pinoy runner, and more.

Pro Triathlete Ani De Leon graces the cover of the April-June issue of Runner’s World Philippines, now available in newsstands, bookstores, and supermarkets nationwide for P150. For more of Runner’s World online, become a fan on Facebook via and on Twitter via
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Want An Ensuring Run for Free?

Ensure your strength and run for free* in the upcoming Ensure to Endure run happening on May 20, 2012 at the Bonifacio Global City.

Event Assembly Time Gun Start
5k 5:00 AM 5:40 AM
10k 5:00 AM 5:30 AM
15k 4:30 AM 5:15 AM

Registration Requirements:

1. *To register for free, simply buy Ensure products from April 16 – May 17, 2012 and present your official receipt:

Purchase Requirement
For every P900 worth of Ensure products in a single or
accumulated receipts entitles 1 FREE registration for 15k
For every P800 worth of Ensure products in a single or
accumulated receipts entitles 1 FREE registration for 10k
For every P700 worth of Ensure products in a single or
accumulated receipts entitles 1 FREE registration for 5k

2. Upon registration, you will get a race kit with a BIB number and a singlet.

3. Registration Sites:
  • Toby’s Sports, SM Mall of Asia – G/F Entertainment Hall
  • Toby’s Sports, SM The Block – 3/F SM The Block North Edsa
  • Riovanna Bonifacio High Street – G/F Active Fun Building
  • Riovanna Katipunan – Unit 305 Regis Center Building
4. Registration Period: April 16 – May 17, 2012

5. Cash prizes will be given to the top 3 finishers for every category.

6. Special prizes will be given to top finishers, ages 50 and up, for each category.

Singlet Design:

Per DOH-FDA Permit No. 0502 series of 2012.

Visit Ensure To Endure Facebook page for more details.
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ScholaRun 2

St. Scholastica’s Academy Marikina Alumnae Association is proud to announce “SCHOlaRUN 2” - a fun run activity organized by SSAMAA to raise funds for financially challenged but deserving scholars of St. Scholastica’s Academy Marikina . This title, puts together the school’s name, St. SCHO, the term “scholar” and the event, Run. It features 10k, 5k, 3k and 500m (Kiddie Run) events.

Proceeds of this activity will go directly to the scholarship fund that will help these students go back to school. Last year, we were able to help 17 students.

What: SCHOlaRUN 2

When: 6 May 2012 Sunday, 5:00 AM

Where: Marikina Heights, Marikina City


Distance and Registration Fees:

     500m / 3K / 5K / 10K - Php 500.00 (singlet, bib, race routes).

     500m-dash Kiddie Run - Php 300.00 (kids *12 years and below, race bib only).

     Php 150.00 - for SSAM Students with valid SY 2011-2012 ID or early enrolees for SY 2012-2013 with official receipt (race bib only).

*Kids 8 years and below should be accompanied by an adult. Companions will be charged accordingly.


5:30 am -10K

5:45 am – 5K

6:00 am – 3K

6:15 am – 500m Kiddie Run

Registration Centers:

Online Registration

1. SSAM Registrar’s Office (Mon to Fri 8:00am – 4:30pm) - Payment should be made at the SSAM Business Office


Joji Ventanilla-Torres ’78/Belen Ventanilla-Camarista ’83

CMT Bldg. 90 Katipunan Road, Concepcion 2 Marikina City

Store Hours: 10 am to 7 pm (Closed on Sundays)

Telefax: 997-1829 OR Mobile: 0917-511-9478


a. SSS Village Center (Closed on Wednesdays)

c/o Teacher Arlene (934-5649)

23 Russet St., SSS Village, Marikina City

b. Marikina Heights Center

c/o Teacher Lilit (940-4891)

2F C&B Circle Mall, Marikina Heights

(Top of Jollibee)

c. Masinag Center

c/o Teacher Naty (646-8832 or 925-0844)

8am to 5pm (Closed on Wednesdays)

/F J&F Building I, Marcos Highway

d. Concepcion Uno Center

c/o Teacher Jocie (942-2558)

731 JP Rizal, Lamuan, Marikina City

(front of South Supermart)

e. KUMON Tuazon Avenue Center

c/o Teacher Rommel (369-7840)

Thaddeus Arcade, A. Tuazon Avenue

San Roque, Marikina City

f. Eastwood Center

c/o Teacher Aggo (Tel. No. 634-3631)

2/F Magnitude Building

186 E. Rodriguez Ave., Bagumbayan, Quezon City

You may also download the registration form from

Route Map:

For more information, you may contact 0921-665-9999 or email them at

ORGANIZER: St. Scholastica Academy Marikina Alumnae Association
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Run and Raise Scholars and some Running Tips

Derek was absent but Runners abound at the blooming venue at Aseana City for the Foundation of the Society of Fellows in Supply Management, Inc. (SOFSM) and Philippine Institute for Supply Management (PISM) Run and Raise Scholars. The race was staged for the education sponsorship/scholarship of fifty (50) Students of the University of Makati and Jose Rizal University, and it was a success.

10K Runners
I wasn't supposed to join this event as I was scheduled to have a reunion run with Mr. Kennon for the same day, but few days before the event, the tight schedule didn't allow me to even prepare for such a challenging reunion. And luckily, Ms. Lia of RSH (our Manager for Team Diadora Philippines) was still able to reserve a race slot for me.

The night before the event, I only had a thrifty 3 hours of sleep, woke up 2AM and wasn't able to grab another doze for the next few hours so I just got up and prepared myself at 4:00AM. Going to the venue by Taxi, the driver (E&E Trans.) noticed that I was up for an early morning activity and we zoomed the more or less 30 minutes ride with exchange of chit-chats about table tennis from which he is good at (based from his stories) and morning jogs/runs with his dog. Our exchange of stories brought back some memories back in my College days when I was still agile at a ping-pong table, and the memory of an old runner in one of the races I joined back in Baguio who was blazing fast than I was on a 10K distance with his askal dog in under 42 minutes. I remember these master-and-dog tandem got to the top ten and the dog was also given a special award for his feat.

Ms. Tia of PepSquad Events
At the venue a few minutes before the race, I met with my fellow Diadora Ph team mate Sam who's up for the 10k category. I thought I was also running for 10k but since I was late in notifying Ms. Lia, my distance downgraded to 5k which is the only remaining slot for our team. On the other hand, Allan (who hasn't arrived yet) is gunning for the 3k. All distance categories were then well-represented by our team.

Gun-start was fired at 5:35 AM and runners were full of energy and speeding out for the flat course covering the routes along Aseana and Macapagal Avenues. As I started, I began running on my race pace and tried (and hoped) to keep it constant. I thought of running and pacing at the back of someone who's ahead of me with the same pace than I am. Then I saw this old foreigner who seems running relaxed and I aimed for him but his long strides made him faster than my own race pace. So after just about 800 meters, the foreigner was already way ahead of me. I was running solo already until I chanced upon three ladies in front of me running the same pace as I am. They look like mother-daughters-tandem and they look strong and fast. Judging from their form, they are track and field athletes, aside from the Mom (wearing Milo 2011 singlet) who's age still doesn't show but seems as strong as the two daughter-looking girls. As I U-turned at Macapagal Ave., I noticed that these girls are running for the 10k distance as they went straight ahead and their Mom was on the 5k category.

On my Diadora Mythos Samurai 3
Just after a few seconds from the U-turn, I heard the Mom talked to me and said "tara sabay tayo, sabayan kita, wag ka lang hahataw ha?".

I told her "ate hindi po ako makakahataw sa inyo, nauna nga po kayo sa akin e!".

From that conversation, she began pacing with me and gave me some useful running tips which refreshed my mind. Most of the tips she told me affirmed the things that I have already learned from my own running experiences, save for one which I thought I was doing right - proper breathing in (from the nose) and breathing out (through the mouth). This she told was to prevent my throat from easily drying up. When I'm sprinting, doing speed works, and running on race pace, I can't help but to breathe in and out both from my mouth as I can't seem to take in more oxygen if I breathe in from my nose (unless I stretch or enlarge my nose holes, which is unpractical while running, LOL!).

She also advised me not to rely too much on energy drinks. She said she already qualified a few times at the Milo Marathon for her age (of 52) and achieved top 3 for 10k distances with only water serving as her hydration. Wow, it did amazed me!

This is how you do the "sikad"
Another tip that she told me: "sumikad ka". The meaning of which is to lift off with more power by pushing off the extended leg just before it transitions to the drive phase. Coincidentally, this "sikad" word has been on my thoughts for a few days and weeks already, as I've been trying to figure out if doing this technique would really help me with good foot landing and running better. While she continues with her explanations about it, I realized that the advantage of such is that the leg will be lifted higher (like when you do your knee-highs) at the recovery phase that will help you avoid from over-striding, keeping you upright, and making your feet land naturally on mid-foot and at the center of your gravity/body's mass.

During this whole conversation, I was already puffing hard and can no longer talk much but I was glad that she did paced me so I was pushed to my limit. As we get near the finish arc, she no longer accompanied me towards the finish line and she just turned to the sides. I saw her again at the Pocari Sweat hydration booth and thanked her for the pacing, the running tips, and got to know that her family was all athletes from Runners to TriAthletes. She told her son's name who is a TriAthlete but my memory served me with no space to remember it. And if I remember right, her name -- my pacer-turned-5k-coach's name was Janet Pedrigosa. I searched her name from Facebook but got no chance to find her.

Team DiadoraPh
Race Profile:
Distance: 5 km.
Official Time: 00:25:29
Official Ranking: 11th

Race Info:
When: 15 April, 2012.
Where: Aseana City, Parañaque
Event: Run and Raise Scholars

Race results may be checked from and some more photos from the event may be viewed from DiadoraPh facebook album.
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La Union Ku Ikaka Marathon


JCI Philippines (Junior Chamber International), in its mission to empower young people, is bringing to La Union and the rest of the Northern Philippines, a first-of-its-kind running event: the Ku Ikaika Marathon 2012. In partnership with Kahuna Beach Resort and Spa, this event will showcase a full 42-kilometer marathon passing through (4) four different areas or tracks: (1) a flat concrete road run, (2) a tobacco/rice/corn field run, (3) a mountain uphill/downhill run, and (4) a beach run.

“Ku IkaiKa” is a Polynesian phrase chosen to aptly describe the whole marathon, which literally translates to “Stand Strong”. Hawaii hosts the Ku Ikaika Surfing Challenge (stand up paddle), one of the most prestigious surfing events in America, where surfers overcome gigantic waves. The La Union Ku Ikaika Marathon will surely challenge not just the physical ability of the runners, but also their will and spirit to endure the race through to the finish line. As the winners and brave challengers of Hawaii’s Ku Ikaika surfing competition are treated with great respect and accolade, the finishers of La Union’s Ku Ikaika Marathon will be regarded with the same because they prove and deserve to be called the real STRONG men and women in the sport of running and that is true in every sense of the word!

It’s not all pain and suffering though. Runners will surely have the chance of discovering the pristine beauty of La Union: its beautiful, breathtaking landscapes—from the coasts and fields of San Juan to rivers of San Gabriel and the ridges of San Fernando City. With San Juan’s famous waves and friendly people, you can definitely say it’s more fun in the Surfing Capital of the Philippines!

Easily accessible both by private or public transport, San Juan, La Union would take six (6) hours by land and forty-five (45) minutes via air travel from Manila. Come with your family and friends to complete your summer experience. Furthermore, the proceeds of the run will be for a good cause: it is a fund raising effort by the Jaycees in their advocacy to help provide opportunities for youth development.

What: La Union Ku Ikaika Marathon 2012

When: 19 May 2012 Saturday, 4:00 AM

Where: Kahuna Beach Resort and Spa, San Juan, La Union, PH

Distance Categories: 3K / 5K / 10K / 21K / 42K

Organizer: JCI, Kahuna Beach Resort and Spa, and iRunners Productions

Registration Fees:

  • 3K Beach Run - Php 300.00 (La Union) / Php 450.00 (outside La Union) / Php 800.00 (Foreign)

  • 5K Beach Run - Php 400.00 (La Union) / Php 500.00 (outside La Union) / Php 1,000.00 (Foreign)

  • 10K Road/Beach Run - Php 600.00 (La Union) / Php 600.00 (outside La Union) / Php 1,200.00 (Foreign)

  • 21K Road/Fields/Beach Run - Php 800.00 (La Union) / Php 800.00 (outside La Union) / Php 2,000.00 (Foreign)

  • 42K Road/Fields/Mountain/Beach Run - Php 900.00 (La Union) / Php 900.00 (outside La Union) / Php 2,500.00 (Foreign)

Registration Venues:

  • ROX - Bonifacio Global City, Taguig / Mile Hi, Camp John Hay, Baguio City

  • City Light Hotel Baguio - Near Baguio Cathedral

  • Splash Direct Sales Pampanga - 2/F, CLK Bldg, Dolores San Fernando City, Pampanga (5 minutes away from SM Pampanga, by jeepney)

  • San Fernando City Town Plaza - at the Kubo, in front of The City Hall of San Fernando

  • Kahuna Resort and Spa - San Juan La Union

  • Online (Registration and thru Bank Payment) at: iRunnersCommunity

Contact Details:

  1. Manila (contact Stan Abasolo @ +63929-291-4546)

  2. Baguio City (Gina +63949-315-3922 or Gerryme +63908-768-5458)

  3. Pampanga (Marvin +63939-907-8694)

  4. San Fernando City, La Union (Millicent +63910-577-8869)

  5. Kahuna Resort and Spa, San Juan La Union (Elaine +63(72) 607-1040 / 1017 )

  6. You may also email or visit their website at:

Singlet Design:

Medal Design:

Actual route maps:

3K          5K          10K          21K          42K

For the preview of the race routes, follow this link.
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Just Slowing Down Increases Risk for Heart Attacks and Diabetes

by Dr. Gabe Mirkin, M.D.

Your body is a finely-tuned machine that requires constant movement. A study from the University of Missouri shows that as soon as you start to exercise less than you normally do, your body changes, causing blood sugar and insulin levels to rise; and you develop changes that eventually can lead to diabetes and a heart attack (Med Sci Sports Exerc, February, 2012;44(2):225-31). The American Heart Association recommends that you take at least 10,000 steps per day, equivalent to 30 minutes of walking or slow jogging. The average American takes fewer than 5,000 steps per day.

The subjects in this study regularly took about 13,000 steps per day and exercised for more than 30 minutes a day. Their blood sugars never spiked too high after they ate. They were then told to cut way back on their exercising and stop walking so much. They took fewer than 5000 steps per day. They took the elevator instead of stairs, walked an average of 4,300 steps per day, and exercised for less than three minutes a day. They ate the same amount and types of food. After just three days of reduced activity and the same intake of food, their blood sugar levels one hour after meals increased by almost 100 percent and their insulin levels rose significantly.

The results of this study should encourage you never to stop exercising. When blood sugar levels rise too high, sugar sticks to the outside membranes of cells. Once there, it can never be removed. The sugar is converted eventually to sorbitol, which destroys the cells to cause every known side effect of diabetes: blindness, deafness, heart attacks, strokes, loss of feeling, impotence, kidney failure and so forth.

Resting muscles are dead. They need insulin to draw sugar from the bloodstream into their cells; even then, they do it very poorly. On the other hand, contracting muscles can draw sugar from the bloodstream without needing insulin. This blood-lowering effect is maximal when you are exercising and for up to an hour after you finish. Then it tapers until it completely disappears after 17 hours.

So 17 hours after you finish exercising, your blood sugar starts to rise higher than normal after you eat. Your arteries will not be damaged by high blood sugar levels after just one day of not exercising. However they will be damaged if you continue to avoid exercise.

When your blood sugar levels start to rise higher than normal, your pancreas releases more insulin in an effort to lower your high blood sugar levels. So your blood insulin levels rise. High insulin levels constrict arteries leading to your heart to cause heart attacks. The authors showed that insulin levels rise after just one day of reduced exercising.

Recent data show that the more intensely you exercise, the greater the ability of muscles to prevent blood sugar levels from rising too high. You help to prevent diabetes and heart attacks by contracting your muscles. Keep on moving.

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2012 Mayon 360° Hydration Guide

Click image to enlarge/download

Other Related Information:

April 20, 2012 (Friday)


Binalot Restaurant or House of Inasal, Legazpi City

*Press Conference


People’s Hall, Provincial Capitol Building, Legazpi City

*Pre-Race Briefing with Participants and Carbo Loading Party (CLP)

April 21, 2012 (RACE DAY)

Peñaranda Park, Legazpi City

3:00AM - Assembly

4:00AM - Race Gun Start

6:00PM - Awarding of Prizes for Top Finishers

More about the race details may be found at this link: AktiboKaBa?
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NatGeo EDR 2012 Race Kit Winners


The winners of one race kit for each category for the upcoming National Geographic Earth Day Run 2012...

Thank you so much to everyone who joined NatGeo's free race kit promo, and for liking their page. To those who haven't liked yet NatGeo's fanpage, I urge you to hit it now. You may not get any more race kit from just liking it, but surely you'll get a lot of useful information about NGC's adventures coming right on to you.

So without further ado, here are the winners of our previous free race kit raffle which garnered a lot of contestants vying for those NatGeo race distances. The winners were selected randomly via, once for each category.

21K Winner: Jobert dela Victoria

10K Winner: Billie Jacob

5K Winner: Jeff-Mike Smith V. Sule

3K Winner: Fides F. Placido

Claiming will be announced to you via comment below this post and through my Facebook wall, so keep posted. Congratulations again and to everyone who joined and wasn't lucky this time, just stay put 'coz there will be other surprises to be raffled off to you my avid readers... SOON!
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Coca-Cola Concert ng Bayan unites Pinoy Youth to Celebrate 100 Years of Happiness

Craig David joins Gary Valenciano, Sarah Geronimo & Other Top Pinoy Musicians to sing the Sound of Happiness

Once again, Coca-Cola made happy history with a massive nationwide concert party for the Filipino youth to celebrate its 100th year in the Philippines - the Coca-Cola Concert ng Bayan!

The rocking concert party, which gathered Pinoy teens from all over the country unfolded at the SM Mall of Asia concert grounds last March 23, 2012 and simultaneously shown live in key locations nationwide including SM Baguio, SM Lucena, SM Cebu and SM Davao and streamed via, allowing everyone across the country and the world to be part of the energizing music, the unlimited festivities and of course, the overflowing happiness.

“The Coca-Cola Concert ng Bayan is our gift to the Filipino teens whose positive spirit, refreshing creativity and passion for happiness have always been indestructible. In tandem with our Coca-Cola Happiness President Caloy, they have made this historic event possible! In this epic year, we are all-out in giving the whole nation more and more reasons to be happy. The last 100 years would not have been a success if not for the Filipinos who made Coca-Cola part of their everyday lives,” said Guillermo Aponte, president and general manager, Coca-Cola Philippines.

The grandest leg of its centennial celebration in the country to date, the groundbreaking music fest did not only witnessed the epic joining of forces of top Pinoy bands including Parokya ni Edgar with Gloc 9, Sandwich with Jay Durias, 6-Cycle Mind with Eunice & Kleggy, Callalily with Ebe Dancel, Rico Blanco with Never the Strangers and Itchyworms, SpongeCola with Chicosci, Ely Buendia with Pupil and Wolfgang plus DJ QYork but also a refreshing collaboration by sought-after, A-list performers Gary Valenciano and Sarah Geronimo as well as fast-rising electro-pop artist Somedaydream, for the infectiously fun and upbeat, chart-topping Coca-Cola 100 Years anniversary anthem, Tuloy.

The musical extravaganza, which lasted for more than ten hours, featured back to back to back showstoppers and culminated to a groundbreaking building projection and fireworks display that further ignited happiness through the whole venue and beyond. The visual spectacle signifies the long-standing relationship between Coca-Cola and the Filipinos throughout the years; 100 years of shared happiness that shall continue to flourish in the next century! On top of all these, raffle draws were held in between segments by the masters of the day: TV hosts Robi Domingo, Jose Manalo and Wally Bayola, Monster RX 93.1 DJ Gino Quillamor and Myx VJs Mike Advincula, Joyce Pring, Chino Lui-Pio and Bianca Roque. Lucky winners got to take home one year supply of Coca-Cola and other delightful premium items.

And again, that’s not all! The high-spirited Coca-Cola Happiness President Caloy also made an appearance before legions of fun-loving teens, sharing a few words of happiness and thanksgiving for the constant and unmatched support Pinoys are giving Coca-Cola.

Indeed, there’s no better way to finally close the school season and welcome a fun-filled summertime than rocking out with an ice-cold Coke in hand! And the best part? Craig David was there to join the party! Yes, the international R&B superstar came all the way from the other side of the globe to be part of Philippine music history and to open and share the sound of happiness across the whole nation with Coca-Cola!

Yet, through all the fun fare, Coca-Cola also got to remind everyone about the value of proper garbage disposal and recycling. As part of its Live Positively commitment, specially designed mesh bins were set-up in strategic locations within the venue to ensure partakers dispose off their used cups, food wrappers and other trash properly.

No question, the epic Coca-Cola Concert ng Bayan signals the start of a summer filled with even bigger surprises as the 100th year celebration of Coca-Cola gets to a whole new high. And we can only be sure our favorite beverage brand shall continue to collaborate with every single Pinoy to give the whole nation nothing less than refreshing happiness!

Visit the Coca-Cola Facebook fan page ( and/or or follow @Coke_HappyPrez on Twitter to see highlights of the show and more information.

Coca-Cola. Maraming Salamat sa 100 Taon ng Saya! Ituloy ang Happiness!
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The Dangers of Sitting Too Much

by Dr. Gabe Mirkin, M.D.

The average adult spends more than 90 percent of his waking hours sitting down. A study followed 222,500 men and women for three years, and found that compared to those who sat for fewer than four hours a day:

* those who sat for at least eight hours a day were 15 percent more likely to die in that time, and:

* those who sat for 11 or more hours a day were 40 percent more likely to die in that time (Arch Intern Med, March 26, 2012; 172(6):494-500).

Image from: EverydaySimplicity

A review of the scientific literature shows that time spent sitting increases risk for chronic disease. Thirty minutes of physical activity is as protective as 10 hours of sitting is harmful (Exerc Sport Sci Rev. 2010;38(3):105-113). The more time you spend sitting, the less time you spend moving your muscles (Eur Heart J. 2011;32(5):590-597).


We now know that exercising for only 90 minutes a week leaves 166.5 hours a week for inactivity, which is harmful to your health. People who sit for long periods are sicker, fatter and are more likely to die of heart attacks.

A LITTLE EXERCISE DOES NOT PREVENT THE HARMFUL EFFECTS OF PROLONGED INACTIVITY: A study from Finland showed that exercise does not prevent the harmful effects of prolonged sitting (Scandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sports, March, 2012). Twenty-seven Finnish men and women exercised on one day and rested on the next. They wore special equipment which demonstrated that their muscles were inactive 70 per cent of the day whether they exercised or not. They spent the same amount of time sitting down on days they exercised for 30 to 150 minutes as they did when they did not exercise.

Image from: IDontEatEggYolk


Contacting muscles help to clear your bloodstream of sugar and fat, thus helping to prevent heart attacks, strokes, diabetes, cancers, and premature death. A high rise in blood sugar causes sugar to stick to the outer surface of cell membranes and destroy the cell. Resting muscles require insulin to prevent this high rise in blood sugar. Contracting muscles remove sugar and fat from your bloodstream without needing insulin. When you spend a lot of time sitting, your blood sugar and fat levels rise too high, which can damage your arteries and every other cell in your body.


A muscle's ability to extract sugar and fat from your bloodstream without needing insulin is maximal during exercise and only for up to an hour after you finish exercising. This benefit rapidly declines to disappear completely in fewer than 17 hours.

THE MESSAGE FOR YOU: Try to exercise every day and try to avoid sitting for prolonged periods of time.
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PepSquad Summer Races Promo

Fun, Fitness, or Goodwill... Check out PepSquad's race lineup this summer. Register in any three (3) of their upcoming races from April 1-14, 2012 and get Php 300.00 OFF on your total registration fees!

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Salomon RoadxTrail: First Mountain Run at Tagaytay Highlands

It's the first time that I got myself into three trail races in a row, and it was my second mountain run / climb for this year - the Salomon XTrail Pilipinas Run, held in Tagaytay Highlands. I did not really plan nor it came across to my mind that I will be battling more trail runs just for the first quarter of 2012, and not just ordinary trail running, but elevated/altitude trail runs it is.

Salomon Race Shirt
Two nights prior to this event, I only had a total of around 12 hours sleep and the night before, that was Friday, a 5-minute sleep at 8:00PM was the only doze of rest that I got. My insomnia has been a constant and faithful partner of me. Certainly it's not the excitement for the upcoming race that kept me awake. I am actually nervous due to the lack of training, sleep, and nutrition. At past 12AM, I was still awake staring at the ceiling, waiting for some melatonin that would induce a sleepy feeling. But until a few minutes before 1:00AM, I was still up so I decided instead to start preparing for the 2:00AM meet up at R.O.X. Gladly, the ride going to Tagaytay gave me more than 40 minutes of additional sleep.

It was foggy when we arrived at the Highlands past 4:00AM, but those fogs were absent at the Midlands where the starting/finish area is. The gun-start for our category was at 5:30AM, enough for me to change into my running gear and get some light warm-up only as my body was still too lazy to move.

I positioned myself at the back of the pack with other colleagues but when the gun-start was fired, I remembered that the entrance to the trail was narrow so I sped up just to gain some distance and avoid the early traffic of the trails. The first part of the race was the same road that we took during the test run and after around more than a kilometer, it was already a series of trail ascents and descents.

Kuya BhoyRunner'sRunner at the starting line (photo by JazzRunner)
The trails were muddy and slippery caused by the rains for the past few days. One thing I have noticed along the route was that most of the bushes and vegetations that we've met during the test run were no longer rooted as it was already cleaned-up and some parts of the route were also widened, thus there were more mud than before. As the mud slowly accumulates on my shoe (Diadora Mythos Samurai 3 which is not really intended as a trail shoe), I've been thinking already if I should just run barefoot or run with only the Thorlos socks on. But at some point, the mud would just fall off so I just kept on it.

The "happiest" part of the route was the trails going up to the mountain ridges and slope towards the Belle View Condominiums. It was a rocky, steep, and narrow climb that started near Madre De Dios Church. It was here that those ropes became useful, and the wishful running towards the U-turn became utterly useless. Mountain run? Most of us wasn't able to run the ascent, save for a very few thrifty jogs whenever there's some 3-5 meters of descent or flats. Walk, jump, climb - that was the trick of the game from this moment on that spanned around more or less a kilometer before reaching the peak.

At the peak, the view that greeted us was very relaxing, overlooking the trees, the neighborhood below, and most specially the Taal lake. The air was fresh and soothing. Looking at my watch, it was just at 13.85km mark. After the relaxing moment on top, as the saying goes, what goes up, goes down. Going down would've been much easier if not for the loose soil and rocks, slippery mud and leaves, and the steep descents that still requires the use of rope. On some parts, it is much wiser to just jump through and avoid the mud and loose rocks instead of slowly stepping on them as it would just make it erode more. Though it requires confidence and making sure that where you will be landing next is also safe, with strong balance, and a conserved agility that will help you regain your momentum should you lose your balance.

Still, mother nature has a lot of surprises however you plan or try to keep yourself sound and safe as was manifested on the mishap that happened to me. I was treading carefully at some point in the middle going down from the peak when I didn't notice that there was a sturdy vine where I tripped over. My hands immediately moved from my side to the front, ready to hold the position so as not to lie face down on the ground. My face was saved but, my left knee solidly hit a rock. I turned over and sat at the side, but my left leg seemed that it suddenly lost its strength, making my calves to also hit the same rock where I bumped my knee. At this point, my calves turned berserk into a rampaging ache of cramps that even my arms can't firmly press against it.

Injuries like these are priceless!
It was definitely the greatest cramp pain that I have experienced in just a small amount of time. I remained sitting there for a few minutes until my calves have recovered while some runners have already passed me by. I got up as soon as I felt that my calves are already okay.

When we have finally descended and reached the roads, I thought I could already run much better. The cramping was gone but my left calf muscle is still aching due to the hard-bump with the rock. I was a bit limping, and my left leg would lost its balance on each of my stride. Mid-footing with the knee slightly bent as I run wouldn't seem to help. I have to make my left knee stiff (slightly locked) so as not to lose control of my forward balance. My pace became much slower than during the first 10km due to this injury. At some point on the road, a slight cramp would knock at my left calf specially when going down that I have to slow down more or walk just to relax and keep me going instead of stopping.

Upon reaching the last two hydration stop where our 6.5K test run has ended, I sat down on the bermuda grass to relax my lower back which started aching already. Took some legs, calves, and back stretching, re-filled my hydrations, then took off for the final, grueling, uphill road assault. It was around 2 kilometers of challenging ascent which even the vehicles are having a hard time going up. I wasn't able to run any part of this ascent. At this point, my eyes started to ask for a sleep that whenever I see some green grass on the road side, it seemed to me that it is a soft bed, inviting me to put my whole body to rest. I badly needed a sleep!

Finally at the top of the road, just a few hundred meters away from the Peak bar (the highest point), the last hydration stop was still waiting for us. The remaining distance towards the finish line from here was about more or less 2 kilometers of pure downhill. It's time to run and finally end the race. I was about to go full speed when my left calf cramped once again. Running fast was not possible so I just jogged and slowly increased my pace and slowed down again whenever I cramp. It was only at the last 400 meters towards the finish line that I was able to speed up as I became excited upon hearing the voice of the program hosts.

Sprinting down towards the finish (photo captured by VVLF)
The finisher's medal made it to my neck, although slow, it was a strong finish! Walking towards the tent, I can't help but to grab a chair (which I forgot to ask if there's an occupant) and elevate my feet. A few minutes and I felt that both of my legs and calves are already numbing. Sir Rene (JazzRunner) and Sir Bobby (CruseControl) advised me to take a walk and it was then when I realized that I haven't done some cooldown exercise yet.

Finally taking my nap, CJ may panahon ka rin =)
After a few hours of taking rest and munching our sumptuous brunch, it was time to bid goodbye to this extreme, challenging race. Yet, the fun didn't ended there as during our travel going back together with other runner-bloggers and Ms. Laira, everyone was still alive and full of enjoyment as we exchange stories that made the bus ride more fun. ("Secret lang na mataba tayo!" - Anonymous)

Reaching home, I immediately put my things away, removed my clothes, washed my body, and took another few hours of sleep. When I woke up, my knee was aching and it was only then that I noticed the wound on my left knee. Up until now, my left leg is shaking when going down the stairs, I feel some knee pains when bending my leg, and I can't stand longer than 30minutes as my left calf would numb. I haven't tried running yet though to see what other pains I would feel.

Salomon XTrail came second as the hardest trail route I've ran to, next to the previously held Mt. Ugo Skyrun last February 18 in Itogon, Benguet. During our previous test run for this race, I didn't expect that there will be a lot more, more, more surprises awaiting us on the actual race, specially the number of ropes and loose rocks! I didn't even think that the elevation of around 2,000 feet will be very much challenging. I did read the technical details of the 24k route but I have not absorbed those details until I get to actually experience them. Indeed, this race made a great mark on my trail running experiences.

(Photo thanks to CJ)
Congratulations to Salomon Philippines, Primer Group, Tagaytay Highlands and Midlands Resort, also Ms. Janice and to Ms. Laira for the invite and opportunity to experience this great race.

Race Profile:
Distance: 24.4 km.
Official Time: 03:51:36
Official Ranking: 97th

Race Info:
When: Mar. 31, 2012.
Where: Tagaytay Highlands and Midlands Resort
Event: Salomon XTrail Pilipinas Run 2012

Race Results are available at
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