Sunday, December 31, 2006

2006 Stats

Here's the stats from my first full year of consistent exercising, courtesy of my Polar 720i HRM!

No. of Exercises = 113 = 2.17 per week
Total Training Time= 137h 51m = 22m 40s per day
Total Energy Expenditure = 86,023kCal
Longest Event (Time) = 2:19:13 (Petaling Hash 13/5/06)

Total Cycling Distance = 1,509km
Total Cycling Time = 60h 11m
Longest Ride = 87.3km (Batu Arang 3/12/06)
Fastest Ride = 32.4kph (Home to Work 15/4/06)

Total Running Distance = 406.6km
Total Running Time = 60h 50m
Longest Run = 15km

Total Swimming Distance = 5.9km
Total Swimming Time = 2h 23m

and in pretty pictures....(this one shows cumulative cycling & running distances)... can see I didn't do much until halfway through the year! This is a graph of training time each week...the gap in the middle is my trip to England.

Saturday, December 30, 2006

Record Breaking 5k!

I was going to put "5k in under 30 minutes" on the blog as one of my Targets for 2007, but I went to KLCC this morning and did 5k in 29:22 so no need!!

I had a good swim lesson for an hour after that, and I'm off for a Hash run now.


Thursday, December 28, 2006

Double Hill Comeback

Despite rain falling a few km away, and forgetting my heart-rate monitor, I suprised even myself by still making the effort to run the 10.8km "Double-Hill" route all on my own. A toilet stop and some headphone difficulties pushed my time up a bit and I clocked 1:09:48 - that's 6:25 per km, which is more or less my usual pace.

This surprised me as I expected to be slower following my illness. I suppose that fitness built up over a long time also takes a long time to be lost?

I'm now confident of managing at least one long bike ride this weekend, hopefully 100km+.

Goodbye 2006

I had 4 days off work (Sat to Tue) and wanted to get back to doing some exercise following my recent ill health.

I managed an easy 8km Petaling Hash on Sat p.m. despite still not being 100% (still tired and coughing in the mornings). Sunday a.m. I was still under the weather a bit but was determined to get to Ulu Langat for the ride to Klawang.

I finally met Azwar, and also Bacin, Adzim, and another guy whose name I can't remember. I felt fine on the flat first 14km but the climb up Peres was awful. I really wasn't feeling good and decided to u-turn at the top. The return leg was fine, but I was disappointed not to have done my first 100k+ ride for 8 years! Maybe this weekend!

Here's the ride profile...

No activity on Xmas day except eating quite a lot of chocolate!

On Boxing Day afternoon I attempted a 1-hour run around the KLCC track but still didn't feel good despite my very slow pace. After 3 laps my stomach was twisting and turning so I gave up after 4 laps. Still ran 5.2km though, in a slow 35mins.

Tuesday is PCC Night Ride day, so I drove to TTDI in the evening. More people turned up than I expected, and I had an enjoyable but tough (faster than usual) 23.8km ride in almost exactly an hour. My legs were burning on the last hill but felt fine the next day.

Tonight I'm going to keep up my plan of exercising (or training as I should now call it) every other day. My plan (subject to Will and Weather) is to do the Pacesetters famous 10km Double Hill route from Padang Merbok.

I've got another 4 day weekend coming up. I'm tempted to drive up to Ulu Yam early Saturday afternoon and cycle up towards Genting, then fly back down in time for the Petaling Hash.

This morning I was delighted to see that Pacesetters have got a well-stocked 2007 event calendar online, so I've updated mine accordingly, with all hyperlinks I know of. Look right!

I've signed up for the KL Half-Marathon on 18 March, and a couple of the training runs beforehand.

Saturday, December 23, 2006

70.3 Here We Come!

The competitor list for the Singapore 70.3 Tri is online now - here's me circled in red!

This race, and possible the Desaru Pengerang Long Distance Tri in August will be my main focus from now. I've got until April (A'Famosa) for the first Tri of the year to try to become proficient at front-crawl (another lesson coming up in 50 mins). The January Kuantan Tri has been cancelled so my next two main events will be a first ever 20k run for me on 21 Jan, and the Singapore Duathlon on 11 March. That will be my first full-length Duathlon (10k/40k/5k).

I'm still a bit under the weather from last week's throat infection that travelled into my chest, but it is quite well cleared up now so I really hope to be ok for a 130k ride tomorrow, and a >10k run on Xmas Day. Possible Petaling Hash this afternoon too! Bye for now!..

Thursday, December 21, 2006

The Right Way To Argue

Arguing couple
We all argue... but how do you know whether an argument is valid?
Christmas is a time for family and good conversations around the dinner table. But when talk turns to politics or religions, can you hold your own? Ethicist Daniel Sokol offers a few pointers on how to argue a strong case.

There are several ways to get what we want. Fighting, stealing... but for most of us, persuasion is a more common approach.

Whether we are negotiating a salary, giving our views on abortion or the death penalty, or arguing over who should wash the dishes, persuasion by argument is central to our lives. Indeed, arguing is an essential part of what it means to be human.

So what is an argument?

An argument can be broken down into a premise (or premises) and a conclusion. For example, the traditional "pro-life" position on abortion consists of two premises followed by a conclusion:

  • Premise one: "It is wrong to deliberately kill an innocent human being"
  • Premise two: "A foetus is an innocent human being"
  • Conclusion: "Therefore, deliberately killing a foetus is wrong"

Is it a valid argument? An argument is valid if the premises lead logically to the conclusion. If the premises are true, then the conclusion must be true.

Since the validity of an argument rests solely on the connection between the premises and the conclusion, an argument can be valid even though the premises and conclusion are false.

Take this as an example:

  • Premise one: "Iraq has weapons of mass destruction (WMD)"

  • Premise two: "WMD must be destroyed"
  • Conclusion: "Therefore, we should destroy Iraq's WMD"

John McEnroe and Aristotle
Will logic or passion win the day?
This is a valid argument, since the conclusion follows from the premises. Yet it is not a sound argument - because that would require both that the argument be valid and that the premises be true, and we now know that Iraq had no WMD. Premise one turned out to be false.

And there are other perspectives to consider.

Returning to the pro-life argument, an opponent might question the premise that it is wrong to deliberately kill an innocent human being by asking what we mean by "innocent".

If the foetus threatens the woman's life, is it still innocent? Another move is to deny that abortion is always a deliberate killing of the foetus. When a doctor removes the uterus to treat a malignant tumour, the intent is not to kill the foetus - its death is a side-effect of the medical procedure.

Of course, these counter-arguments are in turn rejected by pro-lifers.

Defective argument

So how can we identify whether an argument is built on sound foundations. How do we detect fallacies?

Guy Goma
If someone is as an "expert", does it make their views more valid?
Fallacies are defects in our arguments. They are likely to crop up when we feel strongly about an issue, when we construct an argument on the spur of the moment, or when we are factually ignorant of the subject.

A common fallacy is to attack the person making the argument, instead of the argument itself: "We should reject Mr Smith's views on the death penalty, however appealing they may be, because Mr Smith has been addicted to cocaine and alcohol for many years."

Rather than examine the soundness of the argument, the critic diverts attention away from the argument to Mr Smith's socially unacceptable lifestyle. This is an example of the ad hominem fallacy ("against the person").

Another common fallacy is the appeal to authority, which consists of arguing a point by invoking the opinion of an expert. However, experts may be wrong, they may be expressing an opinion outside their area of expertise or they may have been incapacitated or joking when making the point.

Godwin's law says online debates always end with a Hitler comparison
It is the expert's reasons that are valuable, not the fact that they were announced by an expert.

It is also tempting to make broad generalisations based on a small sample. We notice one threatening ruffian with a pony-tail and immediately believe all pony-tailed youths are thugs.

This is the fallacy of the lonely fact. When studying for my PhD, I interviewed people who believed doctors should not disclose a grim prognosis to patients. They based their views on anecdotes about patients who committed suicide or died very soon after such disclosures.

They derived a broad conclusion from a tiny sample. At the other extreme, some people believed doctors should tell patients "the whole truth", however ghastly.

The black-and-white fallacy refers to the belief that there are only two possibilities - conceal the truth from the patient or disclose everything - when other alternatives exist, such as revealing information gradually and assessing whether the patient requires more.

Hell in a handcart

In ethics, people sometimes invoke the slippery slope argument. The idea is that if you allow one thing to happen, it will trigger a chain reaction that will ultimately lead to a terrible state of affairs.

Doctors face tough questions about how much to tell patients
Opponents of euthanasia may argue that legalising morally acceptable cases of euthanasia will lead to legalising unacceptable ones. Some forms of slippery slope argument can be compelling, since the slide from the top of the slope to the bottom is obvious.

In other cases, the slope may be less slippery. Some slippery slopes are akin to a series of manageable steps rather than a soap-covered slide into the jaws of evil.

Those familiar with internet culture may have heard of Godwin's law. Coined by the American lawyer Mike Godwin in 1990, it states that the greater the length of an internet discussion, the higher the chances of a comparison involving Hitler or the Nazis.

The law reflects the tendency of some online forum users to use slippery slope or ad hominem arguments to win often impassioned discussions.

Many fallacious arguments are persuasive, and an accomplished speaker can deliberately mislead others through the subtle use of fallacies.

In Oxford, souvenir shops sell a postcard which reads:

    "The more I study, the more I learn,
    The more I learn, the more I forget,
    The more I forget, the less I know.
    So... why study?"

Fooled into accepting false premises, we risk making bad decisions.

Dr Daniel Sokol is a medical ethicist and lecturer in ethics at Keele University.

Monday, December 18, 2006


Based on typical triathlon distances, to have a good balance of training I need to split my training as follows, according to distance (not time)...

Swimming 3%
Cycling 78%
Running 18%

I can cycle anything up to 150km a week no problem. But to run say 15-20km AND swim 2-3km is pushing it a bit - I like to be at home watching TV too much!!

Well you never know, once I've got stuck into my front crawl training perhaps I'll become more interested in swimming, which I have always regarded as a bit boring to be honest.

Singapore 70.3 Tri

I've done it - I registered!!!! 9 months and counting....better start training!!!!!!!

Aviva Ironman 70.3 Triathlon Singapore 2007

The latest news is that registration has now opened for this event.......

That's a 1.2 mile swim, 56 mile ride and 13.1 mile run (total 70.3 miles, hence the name!). Or in metric......1.8k/84.5k/19.8k.

At the moment I have serious doubts as to whether or not I could finish such an event, and I don't even know where I'll be in 10 months from now, but I'm sorely tempted to register. If I withdraw for any reason up to 1 month before the event I'll get most of my fee back.

Registering will also act as a massive carrot to encourage me to train through most of 2007. I'll certainly have to start doing 15-20km+ runs, 100k+ bike rides and some 2k swims.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Latest Photos & News

This is our Xmas tree, beautifully decorated by Sri...

Here's Lucas having a spot of fun with shaving cream.....

An here's my brick-sized book that I'm reading. After struggling through the Treebeard chapter I'm back up and running again...

I took Friday afternoon and Saturday off work as I have a throat infection. So I missed out on my Sat a.m. ride to work, and didn't go out with PCC this morning depsite really looking forward to riding up to Genting Sempah with a group for the first time.

I struggled through a swimming lesson yesterday, but cancelled it today as I'm not up to it.

This is my first illness since June and has come at the same time as a period of relatively little exercise - no coincidence I think. Anyway my next event isn't until late Jan. so I'll take a little break now - a winter off-season break!

I have taken leave at Xmas & New Year so I'll have 4 days off for both of the next long "weekends". I plan at least 3 long bike rides and a couple of long (10-15km) runs in that time.

If the Jan 20-21 Kuantan Tri doesn't happen (as I suspect it won't) I'll be doing my first ever 20km run on the 21st, so I need to do some more running in the weeks before.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

My 2006 Medals, Certs. & Race Numbers

To remind myself of how great I am, I've been keeping all the certs. and medals from all my events. Inspired by, I now also keep a race number. I only started doing this since September so I don't have many. Here's my "2006 collection"...

I hope to have a much larger collection next year. One day I might even have a medal that says something more exciting than "Finisher". That will probably be when I get a good placing in a senior age group category!!!

These are my 2006 races and times...(earliest first)...


Siemens 10.7k - 1:19:32
FTAAA X-Country (8.2k) - 1:12:00
Power 10.7k - 1:19:14
Polis 10.7k - 1:16:47
MMDS1 (5k/15k/3k) - 1:30:37
NB Pacesetters 15k - 1:49:47
Seremban 11k - 1:23:42
MMDS2 (5k/25k/3k) - 2:12:20
B. Gasing Challenge - 2:01:30
Genting T'blazer (Wild) - 2:16:17
Putrajaya 10.1k - 1:09:44
Mizuno Wave 10.2k - 1:14:07
Pulai Tri (0.75/20/5) - 1:42:05
Chin Woo Biathlon (0.8/7) - 1:06:03
Subang 10k - 1:05:23
Powerman (4k/30k/4k) - 2:02:11
IOI Community 7.3k - 0:53:46
WM Setiawangsa 8.4k - 0:54:11
Selayang 10k - 0:57:54

Sport - A Matter Of Life Or Death

Aussies 'more relaxed over sport'
By Nick Bryant

Australian goal in match against Uruguay.
Aussies took World Cup qualification in their stride

British and Europeans are much more prone to suffer heart problems after watching nail-biting games than their Aussie counterparts, a study shows.

It found no increase in cardiac-related hospital admissions during two big sports events among Australians.

In contrast, previous studies have shown that European hospitals reported a big upsurge in admissions during games in the 1998 and 2002 World Cup.

The Sydney University studyteam examined hospital admission rates around the time of two exciting matches watched by thousands of people.

The first was the 2005 Australian Rules grand final between the Sydney Swans and the West Coast Eagles, which went down to the final kick.

The second was the key World Cup qualifying match between Australia and Uruguay, which saw the "socceroos" qualify for the finals for the first time in 32 years after a dramatic penalty shoot-out.

The match was watched by 82,000 spectators at the Telstra Stadium and millions more in front of public big screens and televisions at home.

The researchers examined the number of heart-related admissions at New South Wales hospitals on the days of both matches, and discovered there had been no increase in the number of patients suffering cardiac problems.

European effect

In contrast, a UK study found the risk of admission for heart attacks rose by 25% in the immediate wake of England's World Cup exit at the hands of Argentina in 1998 on penalties.

Doctors reported 55 extra admissions compared with the number expected.

The UK report concluded: "The increase in admissions suggests that myocardial infarction (heart attacks) can be triggered by emotional upset, such as watching your football team lose an important match."

The Sydney team said their research suggested that the stereotype of the laid back Aussie had some validity.

They also proffered a simpler reason: the number of times that Australia ends up on the winning side, especially when it comes to cricket.

As lead researcher Professor Adrian Bauman wrote in the Medical Journal of Australia: "Overall, it is probably safe for the Australian population to watch telly over the Christmas break - even to watch the Ashes test series - with minimal increased cardiac risk.

"We are likely to win, anyway. No worries mate."

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Ride Profiles

Here's the profiles for the last 2 weeks PCC Sunday rides. First up is Centrepoint Bandar Utama to Batu Arang...

Next is the return leg, Batu Arang to Centrepoint Bandar Utama. There's 445m of climbing on that ride. The main peak (on the left) is a nice long winding climb through young oil palm plantations outside Batu Arang.

This is the profile from this mornings ride out to the Guthrie Expressway. The 7 or so peaks between 20 and 40km are the Expressway, through rolling hills, up and down and up and down......

Friday, December 08, 2006

National Cancer Society Charity Run - 17/12/06

National Cancer Society Charity Run

A little morning run to get the day going?

Finding a way to contribute to society?

Well then, the answer to both questions is the National Cancer Society Charity Run.

Organized by a group of college students driven by their zeal to serve the community, the Charity Run is a sincere project to raise funds needed by the National Cancer Society to further their service in preventing cancer, as well as improving the quality of life of those living with it.


Venue : Taman Lembah Kiara, Taman Tun Dr. Ismail

Date : 17th December 2006

Time : Race commences at 7 am

Registration Fee : Rm 10 for those below 21 years old

Rm 15 above 21 years old

*First 200 registered participants will get a free door gift.

*Registration will begin on the 16th of December 2006, from

12 noon to 6 evening at Taman Lembah Kiara

*Registration on the 17th of December is also possible; before 6.45 am.

For registration and further information contact :

Yuhhui - 016-6271759 /

Oliver - 012-2311244 /

Bloggers, please check out our OFFICIAL NCS Charity Run blog, copy the code provided and help us promote this event on your blogs!

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Monday, December 04, 2006

Christmas Kids Hash

A report of the toughest ever Kids Hash, including an appearance by Santa Claus, is to follow soon!

PCC Ride - Batu Arang

I joined PCC yesterday morning for another very enjoyable Sunday morning ride. I counted 28 riders leaving Centrepoint Bandar Utama at 7.30am. We covered 87km in 3hours and 18mins at an average of not far under 27km/h. If I remember rightly that's the longest ride I've done since 1998 or '99 when I was in Singapore. Soon I'll have to do a full 100k!

As I seem to have left my track pump in Ipoh or Lumut, I borrowed Ron's pump (with guage) and filled my tires up to 120 psi. This would give me some extra speed i thought! After 20km we were joined by what seemed like a rather small group of Bike Pro riders, and our pace increased. I enjoyed cruising along at 30-40km/h but didn't do any work at the front!

After a while the Bike Pro group went off the front. Before Batu Arang, Ron, myself and a few others regrouped and I set the pace from there almost all the way to Batu Arang, along nice undulating roads through Palm Oil plantations.

We stopped in the town for some 'makan', drinks and a rest. I ate some fried rice and mee-hoon noodles.

On the return leg it took my legs a good 30minutes to get warmed up again. By that time the lead group of 5 or 6 were about 1km ahead. Myself and 3 or 4 others, including Rahim, caught up another 3 or so riders (Harun, Arif and Wendy) at about the 60km mark. I took a break for a while by riding behind Harun, at which point the group broke up and some went their separate ways. 'Twas getting mighty hot out there at this time (about 11am).

I caught Azwar at 65km and stopped for a drink at the next petrol station, where I had spotted Ron and Benny. Noticing that time was running out (I had to get home and out again for the Kids Hash) we quickly got going again. At the Sugai Buloh junction Benny was strongest up the hill, never to be seen again. I noticed my rear wheel was badly buckled (possible snapped spoke - explaining the loud cracking noise I had heard earlier).

Ron and I almost caught Benny, but he caught the green light at Tropicana and we lost him again, although we picked up a guy (sorry. no name) with a nice-looking Token bike with carbon everything and ZIPP 404 wheels. Even his seat was carbon with no padding, on which he said he'd ridden 160km comfortably!

More, including route profile, to follow........

Saturday, December 02, 2006

Institution of Engineers Malaysia Seminar

For a nice change here's a post about me actually working (with photos too!) and not mucking about on my bike!

Earlier this year I was invited to present a talk about the project that I am working on to the Institution Of Engineers Malaysia on 16 November 2006. As I really do not ever like being the centre of attention I look forward to these events with a mix of nerves and determination (to actually do it). Fortunately 2006 has provided me with a small wealth of experience in public speaking - I presented three 15 minute papers to an audience of 2-300 an International Tunnelling Conference in KL in March, and did a best-man speech in front of 60 people, most of whom I didn't know, for my best mate Paul, in England in July.

The blog 'preview' feature isn't working now so here's a description of the photos all in one...

1 - Action shot of me talking about slurry pipejacking systems!
2 - The audience, rivetted to their seast to prevent them from leaving!
3 - Question time! I was rather aggresively and unfairly grilled by one delegate, but the session chairman soon got him to shut up!
4 - Award time - I got a certificate of Thanks and an IEM tie! How lucky I am!...

Friday, December 01, 2006

11k Titiwangsa Training Run

I managed an 11k training run yesterday evening, another record! (longest ever solo run). 4 laps of the approx 2.75km Lake Titiwangsa running track.

I finished the third lap in 52:50, 13s faster than my previous 3-lapper, even though I had to take a 30m detour on each lap to run around the area where it loks like a Ferris Wheel is going to be built.

My total time was 1:10:42 - a pace of 6:25 per km. I did feel a bit tired (weak) and dehydrated halfway into the 3rd lap. Possibly due to accidentally ordering and eating a spicy Tom Yam soup in the morning, which gave me an upset stomach for the rest of the day!

Cycle to work tomorrow morning (try to leave early enough to have time to do >20km) and another KLCC run in the evening. I think I'll go for a shorter faster run...perhaps 6km or so.

Sunday morning I might join Way2Ride for a ride up to Genting Sempah, or ride on my own. Either way I have to be back by 10am for my swimming lesson.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Quiet December

Well the Putrajaya Night Triathlon on 16 Dec has been postponed, and the Polis X-Country race doesn't seem to be on, on the following day, so it will be a quiet December event-wise. Luckily there is the Malay Mail Big Walk 10k on the 16th at 5pm, so the Sunday morning is still free for a bike ride.

I will have to take this opportunity to do some weekend swim-bike and bike-run training before the Kuantan Tri in January.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Sprinters Legs

Check out this guys thighs!!!!!!! He's a 1km Time Trial World Champ (Track Cycling), so he can cycle 1000m in a little over a minute i.e. a little under 60km/h! On the other hand, his endurance will be rubbish!

It is, of course, fellow Scot Chris Hoy- 2002, 2004 and 2006 1km Time Trial World Champ.

Weekend Warrior

For one reason or another (laziness, missing equipment, tiredness etc...) I didn't do any exercise at all from Monday to Friday last week, so I had to catch up at the weekend to make sure I didn't feel bad about it.

Saturday a.m. Bike Ride - 16.2km

Lucas chased me around the condo car-park on Friday evening as I cycled around slowly adjusting the cleats on my new shoes. After successful adjustment I was fit & ready to cycle to work on Saturday morning, which I duly did (16.2km in about 31 mins at just under 30km/h).

Saturday p.m Run - 10.4km

Due to successful forward-planning I had all the necessary kit in the office already to change and have a shower after my ride, and go out for a run after work. All I forgot was my wrist coin-pouch (a freeby from the recent Powerman that I use to hold my MP3 player) but that didn't matter as I had my fantastic new Brooks Pacesetters running shorts, which have a pouch at the front big enough for my player, and a zip pocket at the back for my car keys.

Gone are the days of holding my player in a sweaty hand as I run and having to tie my car keys to my waist cord - hooray!

After work I drove to KLCC and parked illegally behing a line of also-illegally-parked Mercedes S-class' and BMW 7-series cars (no doubt belonging to some rich folks visiting the watch exhibition in the convention centre next door). I had been looking forward to trying the KLCC jogging track for some time - for a change of scene and lap length compared to Titiwangsa.

Also, the KLCC track is a round 1.300km lap - at Titiwangsa it is an odd 2.692km with a gap of about 50m between the start and finish - very strange!?!?

I set off aiming at 0:8:14 per lap, confident of an enjoyable run as I'd managed to stuff my MP3 player with 800MB worth of music. 1st lap 7:59 - so far so good! 2nd lap 8:22 - uh oh! 3rd lap 8:36 - eh?? My lap times got slower and slower until they reached a plateau at about 8:36-8:40.
I think that listening to music makes it difficult to pace myself as I often change my stride pattern as the beats change.

On the final lap I pushed hard enough to reach but not exceed my self-imposed 165bpm limit and clocked 8:09, for a total of 1:07:11, about 0:1:19 behind my target time.

Sunday a.m. PCC Ride - 52km

This was a repeat of a recent ride, 52km around the Hulu Langat valley, up the 9km climb of Genting Peres and a final 2.5km steep climb (Sg. Tekali). I took the first 15km very easy and was dropped by the group on the flat. At the foot of Peres I stopped for 5-10mins and then made my way up with a handful of riders just in front.

I overook about 5 riders on the way up and enjoyed the climb - managing a good rhythm in 2nd gear at some points. I got to the top about 4 minutes faster than my previous attempt.

I had another long break at the top before the 15 minute descent and rollong terrain to the foot of the final short sharp climb. I waited for almost all of the remaining group of 8 or so to set-off before I did - to see if I could catch them up!

'Twas a tough climb but I made it in similar time to before, and managed to catch up alomost everyone.

There were a number of new (to me) PCC riders today - Alauddin, Harun, Wendy, Bo, Meng? and some others whose names I didn't get.

Friday, November 24, 2006


I can't quite believe that I actually ran a total of 32.5km (that's over 20 miles) last week (13-19 Nov). However since then I have become rather lazy and haven't done any exercise at all!

I did mean to go cycling on Tuesday night but i got stuck in a terrible jam on the way to Bike Pro to buy my new shoes, only to find that it was closed anyway!

So I'm playing catch up. I'm going for a 8.3k run after work tonight and then cycle to work tomorrow morning. No doubt some of that ride will be spent adjusting the cleats on my new shoes. That'll prepare me for the PCC ride from Hulu Langat on Sunday a.m. As I'm having my first swimming lesson at 10am that day I think I'll have to cut short my ride in order to get home on time. Hopefully I'll have time to make it to the top of the 344m Genting Peres climb and back.

I then have 3 weeks in which to prepare for the Putrajaya Night Triathlon, which will be a 1k/30k/7k affair - my most ambitious event to date!

Thursday, November 23, 2006


The Ashes series has just started and I found this description of cricket on Wikipedia...

Cricket: As explained to a foreigner...
You have two sides, one out in the field and one in. Each man that's in the side that's in goes out, and when he's out he comes in and the next man goes in until he's out. When they are all out, the side that's out comes in and the side that's been in goes out and tries to get those coming in, out. Sometimes you get men still in and not out.
When a man goes out to go in, the men who are out try to get him out, and when he is out he goes in and the next man in goes out and goes in. There are two men called umpires who stay out all the time and they decide when the men who are in are out. When both sides have been in and all the men have been out, and both sides have been out twice after all the men have been in, including those who are not out, that is the end of the game.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Lucas Supermodel Part 2

A 5-story high photo of Lucas has just appeared on the side of a high-rise building in a KL suburb. It's the same photo that appeared in the newspapaers a couple of months ago.

It's very strange (in a nice way though) to see such a huge image of one's child plastered over the side of a large building!!

Here he is!!!...

While I had the camera out to show him this photo, he showed me a drawing he did at school today: it is of the characters from the "Cars" movie which he saw on his 2nd ever visit to the cinema...

Flashy New Shoes

Following the demise of my nice Nike cycling shoes, which I liked very much, I had to fork out a fair bit of cash for a new pair. I suppose that I could have given my defective shoe to a repair shop but I would never again be confident that my sole wouldn't detach whilst cycling, which wouldn't be much fun at all.

So I paid a visit to my trusty local bike guru Boon Foo and he supplied me with a nice shiny pair of silver Shimano TR02 shoes...

I'm surprised I could get size 47 here! So that's my Xmas pressie to myself bought already. I like the hole in the sole under the toes to drain water from wet feet (after the swim leg of course!) and provide good ventilation during the ride.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

New Blog Name!

I've given my blog a new trendy name - "klingklangman"!! Why? I hear you ask...

"Kling Klang" is the name of Kraftwerk's studio. Kraftwerk are one of my favourite bands.

Not only are they a great band, they did "Tour De France", and cycling is another great passion of mine.


Sunday, November 19, 2006

Selayang 10k Race Report

RESULT - 9.1km in 0:57:54 @ 152bpm.

I arrived in Selayang at 6.30am and there were very few runners around, only a hundred or so. There was no start line or banner in sight! It soon became apparent that the start would be delayed. I ran around the track 2 or 3 times to warm up, stretched my legs, as usual.

Eventually, after they managed to get the START banner lifted high enough to run under, we lined up. A barely-audible announcement was made that although the entry form said Malaysians only, the organisers had at the last minute decided to make it an "Open" i.e. International race. Lucky for me and the handful of other foreigners!!

Once the "VIP" turned up late at 7.20-ish, we were underway. As usual I was swallowed up by almost everyone at the start but in my normal fashion I was overtaking people after the first 1km. After that I made my way slowly through the stragglers and was overtaken by only 2 or 3 people. It turned out to be quite hilly, with a max. elevation change of 60m and an total ascent of 100m over the course. I was slow up the hills but quick down them, taking big strides.

I felt good all the way round and was confident of breaking my 1:04:00 target. After 7k or so the stadium came into view. My time was still only 47mins and I needed to run about 1.5km in 14minutes - something isn't right, I thought!

As I approached the finish I was sure I'd finish in under an hour, but was still sure that the course was a full 10k.

I finished in 0:57:54 (no medals or certs. left - boo hoo!) and was quite amazed at this fast time. Afterwards I drove the exact course and measured it at only 9.1km. This explains things. At that pace (6:21 per km) I would have done 10km in 1:03:38, just inside my target. My recent training runs have been at 6:25-6:30 per km pace so this seems about right. So I am still improving.

I look forward to the first races of 2007 so I can compare 2006 times to my latest times on exactly the same courses.

Here's my HR and Profile for this race. My average HR was 152bpm, which is fast becoming my standard...

Note that I didn't even push very hard at the end. My HR only goes to 161bpm.

My next "competitive event" will be the yet-to-be-announced Putrajaya triathlon on 16 December. So it's back to Tuesday night PCC bike rides, Thursday night runs and weekend swimming lessons and long PCC rides. I'm going to be coached by Malaysian ex-Olympic swimmer Wai Yen. She's going to teach me front crawl!

Looks like I'm going to have to fork out RM400+ for a nice pair of Shimano tri-shoes - the only size that Bike Pro has that fits well.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Wangsa Maju/Setiawangsa Run & Selayang 10k Target

I finished this 8.4km run this morning, in 54:11.

At that pace I'd do 10km in 1:04:30 so my target for the slightly flatter Selayang 10k tomorrow morning is 1:04:00.

That is 0:01:23 faster than my previous PB set at the Subang Jaya 10k a few weeks ago.

Fingers crossed!

Friday, November 17, 2006

My Latest Events Calendar


18/11 - Wangsa Maju Setiawangsa 8.4k run
19/11 - Selayang 10k run
16/12 - Putrajaya Night Triathlon
17/12 - PDRM X-Country, 8km? run


20-21 Jan - Kuantan Triathlon
21 Jan - Pacesetters 20k, KL
3-4 Mar - A'Famosa Triathlon
3 Mar - Singapore Duathlon
21-22 Apr - Lake Kenyir Triathlon
22 Apr - Brooks Bonding Run
20 May - NB Pacesetters 15k, KL
26-27 May - Bintan Triathlon
23-24 Jun - Miri Triathlon
21-22 Jul - PD Triathlon

Thursday, November 16, 2006

2007 Triathlon Calendar

Hooray! The calendar for 2007 is out, the only bummer for me is that Kuantan clashes with the Pacesetters 20k run and A'Famosa clashes with the Singapore Duathlon....

Date Race Venue
January Kuantan Triathlon
20-21 January 2007

March A'Famosa Triathlon
3-4 March 2007

April Kenyir Lake Triathlon
21-22 April 2007

June Miri Triathlon
23-24 June 2007

July Port Dickson Triathlon
22-22 July 2007

Negeri Sembilan
August Desaru Long Distance Triathlon
18-19 August 2007


Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Food For Thought

I have just pinched this from another blog i was reading, and have seen it on some emails doing the rounds before. Normally I have little time for emails like this but this is a good one...


•First, we survived being born to mothers who smoked and/or drank while they carried us.
•They took aspirin, ate peanuts, blue cheese dressing, tuna from tin and didn't get tested for diabetes.
•Then after that trauma, our baby cots were covered with bright colored lead-based paints.
•We had no childproof lids on medicine bottles, doors or cabinets and when we rode our bikes, we had no helmets, not to mention, the risks we took hitchhiking.
•As children, we would ride in cars with no seat belts or air bags.
•Riding in the back of a van - loose - was always great fun.
•We drank water from the garden hosepipe and NOT from a bottle.
•We shared one soft drink with four friends, from one bottle and NO ONE actually died from this.
•We ate cakes, white bread and real butter and drank pop with sugar in it, but we weren't overweight because......


•We would leave home in the morning and play all day, as long as we were back when the streetlights came on.
•No one was able to reach us all day. And we were O.K.
•We would spend hours building our go-carts out of scraps and then ride down the hill, only to find out we forgot the brakes.
•After running into the bushes a few times, we learned to solve the problem.

•We did not have Playstations, Nintendo's, X-boxes, no video games at all, no 99 channels on cable, no video tape movies, no surround sound, no cell phones, no text messaging, no personal computers, no Internet or Internet chat rooms..........WE HAD FRIENDS and we went outside and found them!

•We fell out of trees, got cut, broke bones and teeth and there were no lawsuits from these accidents.
•We played with worms and mud pies made from dirt, and the worms did not live in us forever.
•Made up games with sticks and tennis balls and although we were told it would happen, we did not poke out any eyes.

•We rode bikes or walked to a friend's house and knocked on the door or rang the bell, or just yelled for them!
•Local teams had tryouts and not everyone made the team. Those who didn't had to learn to deal with disappointment. Imagine that!!
•The idea of a parent bailing us out if we broke the law was unheard of. They actually sided with the law!

•This generation has produced some of the best risk-takers, problem solvers and inventors ever!
•The past 50 years have been an explosion of innovation and new ideas.
•We had freedom, failure, success and responsibility, and we learned HOW TO DEAL WITH IT ALL!

And if YOU are one of them! CONGRATULATIONS!

Powerman Results

The official results are out for my race (Men's Sprint). I came 29th out of 46 finishers but would have been 21st without the puncture. I was 18th fastest on the bike ride.

If I was a woman I'd have been 8th!! - Top Ten finish!! Ha Ha!

Literary Joys

Here's a post totally unrelated to physical activity!

When I used to commute to work by LRT about 1-2 years ago (for about a 1 year period) I went through a period of unusually high reading activity. For someone who had only read a few fiction books in his life until then (Fantastic Mr. Fox, Trainspotting, Notes From A Small Island, Bravo Two Zero are those that spring to mind), I went absolutely crazy!...reading twice a day during my 35min LRT journey.

I read Memoirs Of A Geisha, Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha, 1984, Sense & Sensibility, The Life Of Pi, The Famished Road, Ghandi's autoboigraphy, The Hobbit and a few more I can't remember.

Now that I drive to work my reading has all but died, but I did buy The Art Of War by Sun Tzu recently. I read it bit by bit now and again as it is not really a story, more a collection of wise thoughts on how to win a war.

The event that led me to write this post happened a few days ago on the way to work. Having surprisingly and thoroughly enjoyed The Hobbit (which I hope Jackson makes into a movie), I decided to start reading The Lord Of The Rings, even though I've already seen the movies. I am now about 180 pages into The Fellowship Of The Ring and must say that the corresponding first 1/2 hour of the movie misses out more than half of what I've read so far. No Gildur, no Farmer Maggot, no Tom Bombadil and no Fatty.

Anyway......I was so engrossed in Frodo and his small hobbit chums that I missed my stop and ended up in Petaling Jaya before I realised. I had to get on the next train going the other way. Apart from falling into a slightly drunken sleep on the Northern Line in London many times, I have never missed a stop and certainly not through reading a book! I guess there is something engrossing about JRR Tolkein. I read The Hobbit in no time - could hardly put it down.

More Powerman Photos #2

Here's a good photo of me at the for a bigger image. THANKS A LOT to Azman for this one!

Thanks to for this one of me in the transition.......

...and finally a pic of me on my bike! courtesy of edwinngbike on

Monday, November 13, 2006

IOI Community Run 2006

I dragged myself out of bed and drove to Puchong for this 7.3km run. I was fine for the first 1km but then the double-effect of the uphill route and leg fatigue from my duathlon the day before kicked in.

My heart wasn't really in this run, so I ended up walking quite often. Walk uphill run downhill was in order and I finished in 53mins+, 5 minutes outside my target but "never mind lah!" as they say in Malaysia.

Still I got a free newspaper and some drinks, it got me up early and kept up my fitness! I now doubt if I'll do both runs next weekend. I'll probably just do the Selayang 10k on Sunday and skip the Saturday morning 8k run.

Here's a photo, but you can't see me!!!

More Powerman Photos

Many thanks to azman from the forum for these photos.

This is the start of the Sprint race. I am on the right below the 'S' with a white cap on. Considering I was at the front at the start line I got swallowed up pretty quickly!!

...and here I am in the last few hundred metres of the first run...little did I know of the disasterous transition ahead!

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Sprint Powerman 2006 - Race Report

Yesterday was the Sprint Powerman in Lumut - and oh what fun I had!

I planned to arrive in Lumut at 11.30 but stopping for some food, and having to stop at about 15 sets of red lights between Ipoh and Lumut delayed my arrival until 12.30pm. I was not happy! I wanted to cycle a bit to try to adjust my slipping rear gear, warm up, take some photos etc...

I got everything ready but had to run back to the car to put my contact lenses in and wolf down a melted powerbar. I got back just in time for the start of the main race.

...this is the Elite's waiting for the start of that main (10k-60k-10k) race...

Off they go!!!...

Once they were off I went back to transition to plaster sun cream all over me and do a final check...everything seemed ok. I then ran around slowly for 5 mins as a warm up.

At the start line I cheekily went right to the front (as if a true pro!) but only to make sure of a better chance of having someone take a good photo of me! I was quite irritated that my HR was about 147bpm. Before the start I'd expect it to be about 100bpm - must have been nerves. Don't know why I get nervous but I do!

We set off and I was engulfed by a flood of runners who must have thought that you get a special prize for doing the first 100m in 10 seconds. The run was fairly uneventful. I made the u-turn in about 11-12 minutes - suspiciously fast. In my last (illness-affected) duathlon there were only 3-4 people behind me on the 1st run but many more this time! Got to the transition - change shoes, helmet on, gloves on, jog out with bike...

Wait a minute - the rear of my bike is running a bit roughly - surely not a flat tyre! Indeed... it is a FLAT TYRE! ARRGGH!!!!!! ***expletives***!!! Yep - totally flat.

So I kneel down at the side of the transition area, rear wheel off, tube out, new tube in, tyre back on ok, my right shoe feels like the velcro has come undone but i ignore that for now...time to try super new compressed air cannister that avoids me having to carry a pump. By the way this is the first time ever I've changed a tyre with an audience! I think "I've never used this air canister before - hope I get it right!" - ok valve on, screw in air cannister - nothing - screw harder - nothing - unscrew?! - ok unscrew - air is coming out!! - if i lose the air i'm totally bug#$red! - can't borrow anyone's pump! - eventually I twist the valve correctly and my tyre inflates instantly - PRAISE THE LORD!!

I turn to check my show velcro - THE RIGHT SOLE HAS ALMOST COMPLETELY DETACHED FROM THE UPPER!!!!!! Nightmare!! Luckily it is still attached at the toe so I jog out of transition with my shoe flopping around and climb on my bike and off I go (8 minutes lost). I must NOT pull up with my right leg during the ride (shoe will come off).

Was chuffed to start riding as it is my strong point. I was sure I was last at this point and was pleased further still to start overtaking some fellow sprinters quite soon. My legs felt ok and I was cruising at about 30km/h. After 2.8km I dropped my water bottle and had to turn to collect it, losing another 15s at least. That disrupted my rhythm but I got back into it again and managed the first 15km in about 30mins. It was breezy with a slight tailwind off the sea. I slowly but surely overtook quite a few sprinters. It started raining after about 10km. This was nice as it cooled me down, but made visibility rather poor.

My rear derailleur was slipping a bit (due to being bashed around a bit as I squeezed my bike into the back of a pick-up recently) which meant that I had to keep changing gear, negating the effect of my 'aero' bars. My bum was becoming increasingly more painful as I went on. This was because my aero bars made me sit further forward on my seat, where there's less support.

As I approached Lumut I eventually passed a full-distance rider who had been a few secs ahead of me for a few km. As he had a Team PowerBar skinsuit on I was quite chuffed to overtake him! The final couple of km of the ride was good, with a tailwind and slightly downhill, I could rest a bit before the final run whilst maintaining a good speed.

After an uneventful transition I went out for the final run. My legs were fine but by stomach and chest felt a bit full. I definitely ate too much too close to the start in a effort to fill up with carbs. In the last 500m I sped up a bit to gain another place and finished in 2:02:11.

Here's my times...(OFFICAL)

Run 1 - 23:06
T1 - 10:19 (1:59 transition + 8:20 fixing a rear tyre puncture!)
Bike - 1:01:25 (out - 30:23, in - 31:02. dropped bottle = lost 0:15!)
T2 - 2:15
Run 2 - 25:01
TOTAL - 2:02:06 (actual)
TOTAL - 1:53:46 (excluding 8:20 lost due to puncture)

I beat my target time by almost 8 minutes. This
was mainly thanks to a respectable 29km/h+ bike ride. My runs were each 3 minutes faster than targetted, but I think that the route wasn't a full 4k. Even if I ran to target pace, I still would have beaten my total target by 10 minutes thanks to the bike ride.

Here's my bike. Notice the sole of my right shoe still clipped onto the pedal. When I got off my bike it decided to stay behind!

I finished just in time to see the Elite's finish. This is the World Champion and pre-race favourite Benny Vansteelant winning. He didn't look remotely tired!

These are the two winners, Erika Csomor from Hungary, and Belgian Benny on the right.

Here's some local Malay girls in traditional gear to spice up the awards ceremony.

...and here's yours truly on my way home. I hope to find more photos of me on the internet in the days/weeks to come and will post them in this blog.

As usual there were some fantastic bikes on display...this is a Cervelo frame with Dura-Ace components and HED Alps wheels.

This is Benny Vansteelant's Gianni Motta bike. His brother's bike is 002 with the Zipp disc wheel.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

The Departed

Jackie and I went to see 'The Departed' (Scorsese film with 'Leo' and Nicholson in it) at the cinema last night.

Unfortunately, and despite an 18 rating, the film appeared to have been sent to the local kindergarten to have most of the swearing dubbed over or edited out. Some of the dialogue was so messed up by the dubbing and cutting that I could't actually follow the conversation.

I give them 9/10 and a 'Good Effort' for editing out the F word (they missed a couple) but for the even worse C word they score a miserable 0/10! (maybe they don't know what it means or how offensive it is!!).

Funnily enough, the numerous (10 or so) graphic scenes of people being shot in the head or savagely beaten (complete with realistic quantities of blood being projected onto surrounding walls) were not censored at all!

Monday, November 06, 2006

Subang 10k Photos

Photos in order 1 - The Start, 2 - Me with about 300m to go, 3 - Joel moments later, 4 - Large, Medium and Little after the finish!