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Rope Skills for High-Altitude Running

A very late post, just saw this from my hundreds of pending drafts waiting to be posted.

Part of the membership application process in Philippine Skyrunning Association (PhilSky), is the requirement to attend the yearly Sky Learning Series (SLS). These classes are not the usual academic nor running clinic classes, but are an utmost important set of skills that a Skyrunner, a Mountaineer, adventure Racer, or even a trail Runner may need for survival and/or rescue purposes.

Last year (September 1, 2013), the 2nd module of the SLS -- Rope Skills and Rescue training was held at Kampo Uno in UP Diliman. The class was spearheaded by Mr. Ramon "Mon" Marchan from Rope Access Services and Consulting Inc. (RASC). Mr. Mon is one of the PhilSky Pioneer member and also the President of High Angle Rescue Team (HART). He was participated by other people from RASC Philippines who assisted us during the rappelling and rescue drills.

PhilSky's SLS2 Participants
Attended by both the PhilSky members and 2013 PhilSky applicants, the full lecture lasted for almost the whole day and tackled about three (3) major topics: rope rescue safety and equipments; knot-tying and rope harness; and rappelling -- the favorite of everyone which also includes the rope ascend and descend skills. After these mind-opening skills topic, an actual demo of rope rescue was also shown at the rappelling wall of Kampo Uno to give us a clearer idea on how this kind of skill can save your and other peoples' lives.

Below are some of the nutshells of the training. Pardon me though as I wouldn't be able to describe in words how the different knot-tying are done, some of the knot-ties though have links to a step-by-step knot-tying animation.

The lecture began with safety rules and reminders that must be put into heart by anyone doing any rope-climbing activity. These safety rules are like mini-bible that will save your own life.
  1. Margin of Safety (MOS)
  2. Backup (BU)
  3. Check-Double-Check (CDC)
  4. Attention to Detail (ATD)
  5. Know Your Way Out (WO)
In contrast to these safety rules, there are also, like in any life's situation, adversaries that may hinder or might cause to break these safety rules, and these are called the enemies of safety.
  1. Ignorance
  2. Casualness
  3. Memory decay (ugh!)
  4. Overconfidence
  5. Distraction
  6. Stubornness
Below are the photos of the different knot-ties under the figure-of-8 family, the highly-recommended type of knot-tying by RASC:

Simple - basic knot-tie of the figure 8, mostly used as a stopper.
Bend (Join) - provides a safe and simple way to join two ropes. The two ropes should not differ very much in size and for safety, the ends should be longer. After joining, each end of the rope should be tied around the other standing end (using double overhand stopper knot or a square knot).
Loop - allows a simple and reliable Figure-8 loop to be tied to an open-ended post or a bar.
Follow Through - just like the Loop but the process of tying starts with a Figure-8 knot from the attachment point, then the tail-end follows through the original Figure-8 knot in reverse. This knot allows a simple and reliable Figure 8 loop to be tied to a ring, a carabiner, or your own harness.
Double Loop (Bunny ears) - based on the simple Figure-8 knot but uses two double-loops. This knot can be used as an improvised seat (i.e. rope rescue), or to equalize loads. This knot is more stable because it is unlikely to slip so that one loop gets larger at the expense of the other loop.
Tensionless Hitch - does not belong to the Figure-8 family, but is an essential knot use to gain a secure control of heavy loads. Notice that a Figure-8 Loop is used on one end, a carabiner may also be attached on this end.
Prusik Knot - a piece of cord with joined ends using the Figure-8 bend loop. This is often used for climbing (ascender or descender) by sliding it through a static rope.
Rappelling down on an improvised rope harness called the diaper wrap
Front and view of the diaper wrap harness on Ms. Nina Dacanay while rappelling
Rope rescue demo. The guy on the blue shirt and bonnet is the one who is being rescued, while Sir Mon Marchan, the one on top is the rescuer
*Knot-tying photos are owned by the author while the rappelling, rescue, and group photo is courtesy of Mr. Romano Cortes Jorge.

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Brent Run 4

What: Brent Run 4

When: 11 May 2014 Sunday, 5:30 AM

Where: Brent International School, Baguio City

Beneficiary: Project Schools for Schools - Rebuild Schools in Guian, Samar devastated by Typhoon Yolanda

Distance, Registration Fees and *Inclusions:

  • 3K - Php 350.00 - Timing chip, Race bib, Commemorative dri-fit Tee, Finisher's Certificate, Snacks & Raffle prizes

  • 11K - Php 450.00 - Timing chip, Race bib, Commemorative dri-fit Tee, Finisher's Certificate, Snacks & Raffle prizes, Finisher's Baller ID

  • 22K - Php 750.00 - Timing chip, Race bib, Commemorative dri-fit Tee, Finisher's Certificate, Snacks & Raffle prizes, Finisher's Medal

Registration Centers (until May 4, 2014 only):

  1. BRENT School Baguio - Brent Road

  2. Baguio Country Mart - Session Road

  3. Danes Bakery - Lower Mabini Road

  4. SM Baguio - on selected dates

  5. C & Triple A Supermart Express - Abanao Square

  6. Total Motorparts - La Trinidad

  7. *Out-of-town Participants, pay registration fee thru bank deposit at:
    Bank of the Philippine Islands
    Account Name: Jingle Melanie Ku Marquez
    Account#: 001213-1100-19

*Race kit pick-up on race day from 4:00AM to 5:00AM. Just present your deposit slip.

Registration Discount:

  1. 5% off to Group/Team registration (minimum of 10 registrants)

  2. 10% off to Senior Citizens and PWDs



Singlet/Medal Design:


Route Map:


For more inquiries, kindly contact: Ms. Melan Ku Marquez (+63917-866-6700) or Mr. Moonwon Lee (+63917-244-4624)
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The Guerilla Race Warrior Series

Obstacle races has already become popular in our Country, from the Urban-obstacle setting, various man-made obstacles on long-distance adventure runs, circuit and body weight challenge races, and even Military/Warrior-inspired obstacle races such as the already up and more series coming in our Country (and soon in Malaysia) -- The Guerilla Race“® Series.

The Guerilla Race® Series is the first hardcore, obstacle-driven race series of its kind in the Philippines. Skillfully developed by a Philippine Army Scout Ranger, the Guerilla Race® Series is meant to test the Guerilla Racers’® limits in terms of strength and endurance of body, presence of mind and resilience of spirit while having fun in the face of adversity. It is more than an event, it is a way of thinking to thrive under pressure and survive life's many challenges. It is a brotherhood, a sense of camaraderie among Participants.

Get out of your comfort zone, throw yourself in the water, trails, muds, and transform yourself into a tough one who can take any challenge in your lifetime. Guerilla Race® is all about taking on the obstacles in your life and overcoming them, so step on to the Guerilla Race® series -- "Finish the Race... or die trying!".

More details below:

What: The Guerilla Race® - Warrior Series/Leg
When: 29 June 2014 Sunday, (Assembly Time: TBA)
Where: Timberland Heights, San Mateo, Rizal
Beneficiary: HERO Foundation - help fund worthwhile Guerilla Race Inc. scholarship programs for the children of our brave heroes who have left their families and lost their lives in service.

Categories and Registration Fees:
  • Guerilla Kids: 1K + 6 Obstacles - Php 500.00
  • Guerilla Sprint®: 5K + 12 Obstacles - Php 800.00
  • Guerilla Warrior®: 10K + 18 Obstacles - Php 950.00
Registration Centers at the ff. Chris Sports Stores:
  1. SM Megamall
  2. SM Mall of Asia
  3. SM North EDSA Annex
  4. SM Fairview
  5. Market! Market!
Other Distances (to be offered on succeeding series):
  • Guerilla Panther® (7 September 2014) - the third tier in the series, that boasts of a gruelling 21-kilometer trail with 25 or more obstacles, outclassing any other trail run, fun run, Olympic run, bike race, or marathon.
  • Guerilla Ultimate® (7 December 2014) - the highest tier in the series, a 24-hour endurance event with no real known distance or specific challenge count. The trail covers an undisclosed mix of obstacles, physical challenges, and mental exercise. Finishers of this final leg of the series will comprise the elite circle of Guerilla Racers®, ready to take on the next battery of obstacles on the race course, or even outside and beyond it.

The Guerilla Team Challenge®

The Guerilla Race® Series welcomes group entries for each tier, as a unique team-building alternative to a picnic or a walk in the park. The race course is envisioned to be the most adventurous method for any group to develop team dynamics and cooperation, esprit-de-corps, and a collective sense of pride with each and every accomplishment or challenge completed.

Register at least four (4) members, bring your team to the starting line, and finish together!

To help the participants strengthen and prepare for the race, a Military Fitness booth camp training will be offered to those interested, classes will start on April 26, 2014. Details will be announced soon!

Guerilla Race® Series is more than just a contest to complete a brutally challenging obstacle course. It is first and foremost a fierce sport.

TN Guerilla Race-sanctioned obstacle races are constructed on standardized distances with regulated obstacles. Each event is uniquely configured so the racers never know exactly what to expect, but the obstacles themselves are selected from a predetermined set.

This enables our races to be rated on difficulty so that objective comparisons can be drawn between events. Standardized distances also encourage racers to attack courses that are at the limit of their capacity while not getting themselves into trouble.

Guerilla Race-sanctioned races are timed and officiated, and all Guerilla Race obstacles are mandatory. Racers who avoid or fail to complete an obstacle are assigned a penalty—generally 30 burpees (squat thrusts)—which they must complete in order to advance. Failure to complete an obstacle and the associated penalty results in immediate disqualification. This ensures our race results are fair and unbiased. Entrants either complete the course or they don’t. No excuses, no waivers, no asterisks.

Guerilla Race-sanctioned races are responsibly staffed with appropriate medical services. There are no water stations or other support services along the course, and we expect our competitors to push themselves well beyond their accustomed limits.

Minor injuries such as scrapes, bruises, strains, pulls, and singes are common, and Guerilla Race HQ created a Best Injury Award that the recipients cherish as much as their finish line medals. So Guerilla Races don’t cater to comfort, but that’s not the same as being cavalier to real emergencies. Guerilla Race officials and racers alike are required to be alert and responsive to any injury or event that requires medical attention.

Guerilla Races vary from one race to the next. As such, this variety is a primary source of the challenge and thrill of Guerilla Race obstacle racing. Embracing the unknown is a landmark of the Guerilla Obstacle Course Race.

Read the complete Guerilla Obstacle Race Rulebook to find out more about the Course Rules, General Conduct, Infractions, Penalties, Medical Emergencies.

Visit Guerilla Race Website for more information.
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Nurture Run

We’ve all been told that breastfeeding is best for babies; but why are less than half of Filipina mothers opting for exclusive breastfeeding?

Reality bites, and in fact, recent figures released by the Food and Nutrition Research Institute (FNRI-DOST) say that breastfeeding rates are at 47 percent and more alarmingly, there are actually areas in the country that have breastfeeding rates of only 27 percent. That’s 7 out of 10 mothers who opt for infant formulas and other artificial milk substitutes.

Beauty, Brains and Breastfeeding together with UNICEF are looking to shift this mindset. “Filipina mothers aren’t keeping it real and we want to help change that,” says Iza Abeja, Executive Director of Beauty, Brains & Breastfeeding.

In keeping with the thrust to promote, support and protect the rights of the breastfeeding mother and child, BBB is organizing the Nurture Run, one of the biggest breastfeeding awareness initiatives in the country to date. More than 10,000 runners and breastfeeding advocates are expected to join Nurture Run.

Iza also shares that proceeds of the Nurture Run will go to mobilizing skilled counselors, sustaining mommy groups and organizing breastfeeding awareness activities as well as supporting Milk Banks through Milk Letting Days. “All these initiatives will be carried out in strategic areas in the country specifically in disaster prone provinces,” notes Iza. “As the recent disasters in Tacloban, Bohol and Zamboanga have taught us, breastmilk can save lives.”

The event is co-presented by UNICEF, International Labour Organization (ILO), National Nutrition Cluster group for Haiyan/Yolanda and Department of Health (DOH) in coordination with venue-host the Quezon City Government. “Our children deserve the most genuine form of care and nutrition they can get. Support breastfeeding and help us spread the word by joining the ‘Nurture Run.’”

What: Nurture Run - Awareness for Breastfeeding

When: 13 April 2014 Sunday, 5:30 AM

Where: Quezon Memorial Circle

Beneficiary: Initiate support in breastfeeding and establishment of public lactation stations

Distance, Registration Fees and *Inclusions:

  • 3K - Php 450.00 - Bib and Nurture Run Shirt

  • 5K - Php 450.00 - Bib and Nurture Run Shirt

*Group Registrations Discount:

  • 25 to 49 Runners - Php 15.00 discount per Runner

  • 50 to 99 Runners - Php 30.00 discount per Runner

  • 100 Runners and up - Php 50.00 discount per Runner

Registration Centers:

  1. Online via

  2. Chris Sports Branches - 2/F Glorietta 3; 3/F SM North EDSA Annex; 2/F SM Megamall Bldg. E

For more information, visit Nurture Run's website or follow them via Facebook and Twitter.


UNICEF is an agency of the United Nations devoted to serving the world’s children. UNICEF began providing assistance to the Philippines in November 1948. Since then, they have been partners with the Philippine government in protecting Filipino children.

UNICEF Philippines has more than 60 people working to promote and protect the rights of children. They aim to provide the best quality of life for every Filipino child through programmes that help them survive and flourish.

About Beauty, Brains and Breastfeeding

Beauty, Brains & Breastfeeding was established and registered at SEC in 2006. It aims to bring back the breastfeeding culture in the country and elevate the stature of breastfeeding and eradicate the misconception that breastfeeding is only for those who can’t afford formula milk.

In recent years, BBB has not only participated in the promotion of breastfeeding. We have also taken part giving support to mothers. Providing free breastfeeding counseling at evacuation areas and informal settlers vulnerable of displacements in times of calamities BBB is also an active lobbyist when it comes to the protection and implementation of legislations promoting breastfeeding.
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Alaska Cycle Philippines 2014

Alaska Cycle Philippines is the "sibling" of the BGC Cycle Philippines event and is the second event of its kind in the Country organized by Sunrise Events Inc. Both belongs to the Cycle Asia network of events. This years, Alaska Cycle Philippines is happening on May 16-18, 2014 at Bonifacio Global City.

What: Alaska Cycle Philippines 2014


     May 16 - Race Expo and Kit Claiming

     May 17 - Kids' Ride Categories

     May 18 - Adults' Ride Categories

Where: Bonifacio Global City

Categories and Registration Inclusions:

Registration Fees and Schedule:

Registration Centers:

  1. Online via

  2. In-Store at the following locations:

    • The Brick Manila - Unit 1 Woodridge Apartments, Upper Mckinley Road, McKinley Hill, Taguig

    • Bike Town Cyclery - #2240 Chino Roces Ave., Makati City, Makati City

    • Secondwind Pasig - Ortigas Home Depot, Julia Vargas Avenue, Pasig

    • Secondwind Greenhills - Unit GS-107, G -strip, Greenhills Shopping Center, Ortigas Avenue, Greenhills, San Juan City

Kiddie Categories Shirt and Medal Design:

Community Categories (Adult) Shirt and Medal Design:

Challenge Category (Adult) Shirt and Medal Design:

Challenge Category (Adult) Rudy Project Performance Wristband:

Watch the previous BGC Cycle in action:

Kid's Ride

Adult Ride

Register now and follow Alaska Cycle Philippines at the following online Social networks!

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Miss World Megan Young’s 12 Confidence-Boosting Secrets at Women's Health

Being busy is never an excuse not to look amazing! Take it from no less than our very own Miss World Megan Young on her first cover with Women’s Health. A “typical day” for this beauty queen is not really a typical one as she hops around the world doing humanitarian work, attending events, and putting into practice its “Beauty With a Purpose” projects. How she balances life despite her grueling schedule is revealed Women’s Health’s exclusive that includes 12 tips to stay healthy, happy and focused!

Take a cue on how to eat and look like a beauty queen as Megan gives Women’s Health a rundown of her meal plan. Find out the go-to apps that the 24-year-old loads on her iPad to keep fit.

Summer starts now, so get your body bikini-ready with practical tips, recipes and exercises you can even do at home, including 10 moves to shrink that belly. Flip through Women’s Health’s March issue and discover more than 25 crazy and sexy summer ideas that will definitely keep you cool, a variety of swimsuits to flatter your figure, and sun care secrets you need to know to stay safe under the blazing heat.

Sizzle your way to a hot body with this summer special issue of Women’s Health, available in all bookstores and magazine stands nationwide for only P140. You can also download this month’s issue and past issues of Women’s Health at Like WomensHealthPhilippines on Facebook and follow @WomensHealthPH on Twitter and Instagram.

Summit Media is the largest magazine publishing company in the Philippines, with 22 titles under its belt to cater to individuals with different lifestyles, attitudes, and passions: Candy, Cosmopolitan, Disney Junior, Disney’s Princess, Entrepreneur, FHM, Good Housekeeping, Martha Stewart Weddings, Men’s Health, K-Zone, OK!, Preview, Real Living, Runner’s World, Smart Parenting, Top Gear, Total Girl, Town & Country, Women’s Health, YES!, YUMMY, and now, Esquire. Summit Media, for the fifth year in a row topped the nationwide TNS-Trends Newsstand Survey conducted in 2010. Summit Media titles led in all their respective categories, making Summit Media the leading consumer magazine publisher in the Philippines not just in terms of number of titles and advertising sales, but in circulation per category as well. By creating magazines that are relevant, affordable, and of world-class standards, Summit Media has changed the way Filipinos read.

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Premier Sports and GPS Company Debuts the Soleus GO!

March 11, 2014 – Manila – SOLEUS, the premiere sports watch and GPS Company in the performance and fitness markets, is thrilled to announce the debut of the Soleus GO! the most comprehensive fitness tracker currently on the market. The Soleus GO! tracks more than just your everyday activities with a real time crisp, organic OLED display. It is with you all the time to motivate, keep you on track and inform you of all activities, even during sleep. Included with the Soleus GO! Platform is a robust mobile app that allows you to sync all of your activities directly to your IOS supported device. This feature will allow you to log your daily activity so all of your data is easily accessible. The wireless sync will also help you to never miss a text message or phone call with automatic caller ID and text messaging notification via Bluetooth connectivity directly to your Soleus GO! Band.

The Soleus GO! measures, tracks and informs you on the most important aspects of your daily life with immediate, clear precision. The Daily Activity Tracking allows you to set a goal and track your progress by measuring steps taken and calories burned. It also allows you to set a move time notification with a vibration alert if you want to incorporate activity after a certain amount of time. Inspired from Soleus’s leadership position in the performance and fitness markets, a feature unique to Soleus is a built-in Exercise Mode to track your speed, distance and pace separate from the Daily Activity Tracking. The Real Time Smart Wearable Technology feature keeps you informed of the temperature and weather alerts along with incoming calls and text messages. Even as you sleep, Soleus GO! is tracking your sleep pattern including how many times you were awake and recording both your REM and light sleep. This feedback is invaluable to understanding how much REM sleep you need to feel well throughout the day and for exercise recovery. The auto and manual sleep timer will also awake you through a vibration alert if you set the silent wake-up alarm.

The Soleus GO! Application is customizable and saves your user data: gender, age, height and weight and constantly synced through your Bluetooth device. All of your customized goals will be recorded, stored and displayed for you at real time. The summary of these details can be viewed daily, weekly or monthly through bar graphs that display your recorded activity.

“At Soleus, we started the company around meeting the needs of the athlete with quality performance and style at an affordable cost, said David Arnold, Founder and CEO of Soleus. Our core values are attributed to supplying athletes the most advanced tools they need to achieve their goals. At the same time, we want to help people everywhere enhance their life with activity. We spent a lot of time and research to develop the most comprehensive activity tracker that monitors and records the most important aspects of daily life while incorporating the wearable technology features for everyone on the ‘go’.”

Three Colors to choose from:

USB charging cable
The Soleus Go! will be available for selling at L TIMESTUDIO and TIMEGEAR boutiques by March 15, 2014. SRP is Php 7,450.00 and includes the Soleus GO! Band, USB Charging Cable, and Dedicated Mobile App.

To learn more about Soleus, and their full range of products, please visit, friend them on Facebook or follow them on Twitter @soleusrunning.

About Soleus:Soleus is a sport watch and fitness tracking company dedicated to supplying highly functional data monitoring with style, comfort, and ease of use at an affordable price. Based in the core athletic community of Austin, Texas, Soleus provides watches, GPS units and heart rate monitors to help each athlete find their passion for personal sport. Soleus watches are style-driven and set apart by their simple, intuitive, easy-to-use functions that transition from sport to lifestyle.
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