Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Happy birthday, Por Por. =)

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Run Auckland #1

I really like the number bibs. I feel like its more of a super huge name tag rather than a race number.

I ran the first leg of Run Auckland today. It was just nearby at the Waiatarua Reserve. It went pretty well. I did 52:49 for 10.06km. Which is a 5:15 pace according to Buckeye.

So that was alright. Yin and Ahmed both won spot prizes. Yin won a $200 voucher for Brooks! Jealous! I so wanted that. Ahmed won a 2XU visor. I was a little low on luck. But owell, 5 more races! =)

Saturday, March 27, 2010

measure of life

525, 600 minutes. If you watched Rent, you'd know that that is the number of minutes in one year.

The life of a person really is fragile. There really is no telling when life will end for anyone. Although we are frequently reminded to value our lives, to make full use of what we've been given, and to love like there won't be a tomorrow, it's shocking how often we forget to do just so. Everyone is guilty of taking life for granted.

A lecturer of mine had passed away 2 nights ago. He was out with a couple of other professors, cycling in the evening, when he met with an accident. One that cost him his life.

I don't know him very well. I see him 2 times a week, an hour each time, and I've only had 4 weeks of uni so far. My first impression of him was he was extremely monotonous, and his class was one of the classes I had trouble staying awake in. He was a little on the serious side, didn't joke much. But I can tell, that in that head of his was a wealth of knowledge, and from the way he carried out his lectures, I know that he really wanted to impart some of it to his students. He enjoyed teaching, I reckon, because he was really passionate about the subject. I had a couple of friends who were planning to go on a project supervised by him as their post graduate thesis study. I'm not sure what he was researching on, but I know he had to look for volunteers to cycle for 6 hours straight, or to exhaustion. Haha...tough luck looking for those.

So even though I don't know him on a personal basis, his loss is very much felt by me. Simply because he lost his life doing what he probably loved to do - cycling. Like all other fallen athletes, I feel a deep sadness when I learn of their demise, because such spirit and enthusiasm about fitness and sports is what the world needs a little more of.

My deepest condolences are with his family and friends, especially his 3 young children and his partner.

Friday, March 26, 2010


i sometimes think Disney spoiled me. i grew up loving the perfect fairytale, praying that my Prince Charming exists, imagining my own happily ever after.

almost everyone who have had the chance to talk to me a little more would know that i am a hopeless romantic - as hopeless as you can get. i may try to be a tough girl, but i'm a sucker for romantic fools. love notes, surprise presents, romantic getaways, handmade stuff, home cooked dinners, star gazing, moonlight admiring, fireworks, Ferris wheels, unplanned holidays - i could go on forever.

the silliest thing is i can think of a billion ways to be romantic. i have a pretty good idea of what romantic is. very often i find myself just thinking, if i slipped him a chapter of a book i really liked, maybe he'd go and read it and make that happen. or if he overheard someone on the street saying something i always say, he'd think of me and smile, and send me a text telling me what just happened. or if he rummages through his room one day, and finds something i gave to him a long time ago, and decides to wear it out and tell the next person who compliments "Yeah she got it for me." or maybe one night after hanging out with the boys with some booze and all, he gets home, stares at his room, and suddenly wishes he could talk to me. and he'd call me in the middle of the night, well aware that i'd be sleeping, but he'd want to hear my voice anyhow.

because i think i do these things. i'm built that way, maybe. and also coz i somehow know a couple of pretty romantic guy friends who shower their girlfriends with so much love and spontaneity. but yea, i realise because i can think of such crazy romantic ideas, it's very easy to fall short of my expectations.

i actually had this conversation with D sometime ago. about how guys seem to be the sweetest things on earth when they're hot on their pursuit, and probably the first few months to a year of the relationship. but after a while the fire kinda dies, and i don't know if all girls think like me, but i actually wonder "What happened?". His debate was that after a year, wouldn't you want something that is more stable, less hoo-ha, but more grounded, someone you can count on?

i dont know. if you were that crazy over her when you first saw her, shouldn't u still be that crazy over her 2, 5, 10 years down the road? i'd like to think so anyway. shouldn't the sight of her laughing, her eyes wide with surprise, her blushing cheeks still give you a sense of satisfaction? and it doesnt mean that the crazier the things u do for her, the less stable, less responsible you become.

some guys think being romantic requires a lot of money. what they don't know is that the greatest romantics, i reckon anyway, are the ones who don't even need to spend a dime and can still make their women feel like they fell in love for the first time all over again. like seriously, say you've just gone out on a date, he sends you home, few days later, rummaging through your handbag you find a small note in his handwriting which says "Hey". nothing else. fills your heart with warmth, i tell ya.

i still keep that note in my handbag, by the way. and right up till now i still accidentally come across it sometimes. the effect it has on me never fails. =)

yes, he was once the Prince Charming i had dreamed of for a very long time. he'd lift me up so high sometimes i forget to come back down. and i think he still is...sometimes...when he decides to be =). it usually takes the last 48 or so hours before flying off to ignite the romantic in him again. but glad to know it is still there, accessible when he wants to.

i've never been in any serious relationship before this, so i don't know how the general curve goes. but i'm pretty confident i'm not the only one who wishes the line never plateaus....

semana cuatro

Done with 4 weeks. only one more to go before the Easter break kick starts. And then 7 weeks more of class before finals. I'm coping much better now, no more unimaginable homesickness, no more pangs of loneliness, no more waking up disappointed that I am in this quiet quiet town.

things that have happened:

1. I bought a car. Yes I did. And she is gorgeous! I got her for $2000. She is a 1995 Nissan Pulsar. I haven't named her yet, but Ruth said I gotta let a name come to me as I drive it, and nothing has come to me yet, so..*shrug*.2. I signed up for belly dancing lessons at uni. I have 8 weeks of lessons, and I've already done 2. It's been pretty fun so far, because I signed up with Erin and we quite enjoy it. I was surprised to learn that one side of my hip (right) can't rotate as well as the other side. But I can do piston hips (the jerky side to side shakes) and I am working towards the Beyonce booty shake. =)3. I love biomechanics. I think I've found my calling in the world of Sport Science. heh. =)

Saturday, March 20, 2010

death by ball.

Most of you would know that I am deathly afraid of balls. It's not funny, stop laughing.

I am afraid of the kind you throw, kick, catch, dribble, pass. I don't know when, why, or how I adopted the phobia of balls, but when i am put on the spot with the presence of a ball, i almost always freak out.

And being a Sport and Exercise Science Major, I have trouble coming to terms with this silly phobia of mine. Why should I be afraid of it? It's a darn ball. It's supposed to be fun. I'm supposed to "own" it.

A good lot of my friends here in Auckland happen to be friends I met though Shermayne and they all play netball. And they all are familiar with this stupid old phobia of mine due to me pushing the panic button a year ago at one of their games.

I told myself I will one day grab this bull by its horns and embrace it. It's not a hard sport. I don't think my technical skills are that bad. I definitely would have the stamina for it. And I have been trying.

Today I went onto the course again. Was playing Center. The moment the game started, I was running up and down the court. But I had an uneasy feeling. I realised that instead of wishing for the ball to come to me, I was wishing and praying with all my might that the ball would not come to me. And when you wish and pray that hard, needless to say the ball came right to me. In fact, the ball slipped out of the opponent's hands and rolled to my feet. You know what I did?

I. just. stood. there.

It was the most embarrassing moment ever. I froze. I saw the ball. I heard the yells from everyone around me. And I just couldn't bring myself to pick the ball up! It was crazy! I wanted to RUN. AWAY. i immediately said sorry profusely to everyone. I kept saying I didn't want to play anymore. But the game went on and I spent the next 5 minutes avoiding everything - ball AND people, opponents AND teammates. ARGHHHH!

I hate myself for it. I know it's not a phobia of the object being a ball. I'm afraid of losing face. I'm afraid of messing up, of embarrassing myself. I'm afraid of hurting others and hurting myself. I hated being the only person on that court who didn't know the rules of the game. I hated that people come after me when I get the ball. I hated that people EXPECT me to get the ball. I hated having to decide who best to pass the ball on to next in a fraction of a second. I hated having to DECIDE what to do with the ball. It was all just too much pressure!

Maybe that's why I prefer racing so much. Because nobody runs/cycles/swims/kayaks towards me. Everyone's just going in the same direction, towards a common destination. I'm so not a team player. =(

I want to be able to play netball, football, any type of sport and game really.

Looks like I'll just have to try again next time. sigh.

Friday, March 19, 2010


time passing by like a train through the station
pausing briefly to make memories in my head
with Jack Johnson playing through the day
and Vienna Teng right before i hit the bed

it's too easy to let my mind go adrift
in this quiet little town i find myself in
it's too easy to think of you and all that you do
with your deep brown eyes and feel of your skin

and life goes on as i enjoy the ride
whether it's you over there or me over here
watching visions move past the windows
and you're never too far when we talk, yet never quite near

i'd go adrift when things seem less than fun
i'd go adrift when i'm missing you
i'd think of all the times we laughed together
so that the next thing i know, time has passed me through

and i'd miss you every day for sure
like the beating of a heart, i'd never cease to miss
but i'm on this train for now, just thinking of you
watching visions go as i pass through
until you're near enough for a kiss.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Wingate Test

Here's where I actually make an attempt to sound really geeky yet cool.

For exercise physiology lab this morning, I did the Wingate Test. It is a test for anaerobic power (without the use of oxygen) whereby I had to do 30s sprints on a bicycle ergometer with a load of approximately 8% of my own body weight.

I did a repeat test, which means i did 30 s sprint, had a 4 minute recovery, and another 30 s sprint. The results I obtained from the test were pretty awesome. I surprise myself, really. I always feel really shy among my course mates because they're all really really fit people. But today I managed to come up with pretty good results.

In the first trial, I had a peak power output of 760 W. In the 2nd trial, my peak power output was 586 W. According to this website I am waaay up there in the top 10% percentile of women.

Percentile norms for Peak Power for active young adults is :

Male Female
%Rank Watts Watts
90 822 560
80 777 527
70 757 505
60 721 480
50 689 449
40 671 432
30 656 399
20 618 376
10 570 353

Maud, P.J., and Schultz B.B: 1989

Also, a graph is plotted as I spin on the bike. My graph had a nice slow descending linear line. Which meant I am an endurance athlete, and I am able to hold that peak power output for a much longer time than that of a power athlete (sprinters, weight lifters, rugby players). For power athletes, they reach a much higher peak power output, but drops almost immediately after that because they cannot hold that power output for very long.

This really made me happy, because I know for a fact that I am not a well trained athlete, and I had always doubted the fact that I was a clear cut endurance athlete. I'm always ashamed to tell people I run marathons, because I barely train for them. But I guess I am an endurance athlete after all, tested and proven. =)

However, the immediate after effect of the test was quite horrible. My legs were completely jelly, and I had a sickness in the pits of my stomach that felt like rushing out. 30s maximal effort is no joke. I felt like someone had punched the wind out of me. I wanted to throw up. Physiologically, it was because i had a large amount of blood sent to my legs which were slowly making its way back up to the heart and the brain. Also, my body was just overwhelmed by lactate and was just in shock at the amount of it. It took me about 20 minutes before I finally felt close to normal.

But I'm kinda floating on air now, just thinking to myself how "powerful" I am. It is moments like these that remind me why I'm doing this course. =)

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

lab report rant

people always say treasure your student life. working life is a whole different story.

i say, no way. If student life were that great, why aren't the bulk of you going back to it?

working life trumps student life because you don't need to do lab reports. you don't have homework to do. you don't need to study for exams. you just go to work and do work from start to end of office hours, and then you're good to go. your nights are free. your weekends are free.

unless of course u work in an audit firm in downtown KL, then you've only got yourself to blame because you KNEW what you'd be getting into.

But seriously, i cannot WAIT to be in the workforce. because MY job is gonna be fun. Love your job, and you'll never have to work for another day. That's gonna be me when I'm done with this degree.

I CANNOT WAIT for the day where I don't need to retrieve another darn journal article, where I don't have to cite and reference another darn book, where I don't need to go through past year exam papers and sit amidst text books and scribbled notes studying for an exam.

urgh, lab reports. "To prepare you for the future. If you can't write a proper lab report, nobody is going to want to publish you!" Well, I don't see myself publishing anything in future. So just let me go and learn the physiology and biomechanics of the human body and let me apply it to the people I train, will ya?!


Sunday, March 14, 2010

semana dos

Week 2. Done and dusted.

To my surprise, and happiness, week 2 went by pretty quickly. Monday - Wednesday were just days full of classes. Thursday was one class and the night shift at the gym. Friday was one class and the morning shift at the gym. Saturday was a full day at the gym, but I hung out with Nicole (German), Erin (American) and Luis (Mexican) after that. My meet ups seem to be really multinational this year. Which is pretty cool. =)

Today I ran Round the Bays. that's 8.4 km. I ran it in 42:16. I'm quite happy, I must say, that's 3 minutes off of last year's time. I have had bigger improvements, I admit, but i think i've pretty much reached my peak performance already. Don't think I can do any much better. heh.

Don't really have much to say about this week. It's a pretty good one. Any week which passes by faster than what I realise shall hence forth be a good week. Here are some photos.

Erin and I
Sin Yee (?), Kai Ann (?), and Yin. Sorry I really am not sure about their names
Swan and Margaret
Ben, Wye Yin, Jolene, Alex
Bridge sushi roll @ Kura Japanese restaurant

Saturday, March 13, 2010

One Sweet Love

Just about the time the shadows call
I undress my mind and dare you to follow
Paint a portrait of my mystery
Only close my eyes and you are here with me
A nameless face to think I see
To sit and watch the waves with me till they're gone
A heart I'd swear I'd recognize is made out of
My own devices....
Could I be wrong?

The time that I've taken
I pray is not wasted
Have I already tasted my piece of one sweet love?

Sleepless nights you creep inside of me
Paint your shadows on the breath that we share
You take more than just my sanity
You take my reason not to care.
No ordinary wings I'll need
The sky itself will carry me back to you
The things I dream that I can do I'll open up
The moon for you
Just come down soon

The time that I've taken
I pray is not wasted
Have I already tasted my piece of one sweet love?
Ready and waiting for a heart worth the breaking
But I'd settle for an honest mistake in the name of
One sweet love.

Savor the sorrow to soften the pain sip on
The southern rain
As I do, I don't look don't touch don't do anything
But hope that there is a you.

The earth that is the space between,
I'd banish it from under me...to get to you.
Your unexpected love provides my solitary's
Suicide...oh I wish I knew

The time that I've taken
I pray is not wasted
Have I already tasted my piece of one sweet love?
Ready and waiting for a heart worth the breaking
But I'd settle for an honest mistake in the name of
One sweet love.

Sara Bareilles

Thursday, March 11, 2010


So i just finished this book my mom handed to me at the start of summer last year. Haha i know, summer was 3 months ago, but I was kinda busy during summer, in case you didn't know, so it took me ages to finish it. I just finished it last night.

It is by my favourite author Jodi Picoult. She's the one who wrote My Sister's Keeper. I cried from reading that book AND watching the movie. Yes I was very touched by the storyline.

So this book Mercy was also pretty moving. In a different way. To be brief, it was about a man who killed his cancer stricken wife after she asked him to, and he did it out of love. He then went to seek out his cousin, who was a Police Chief in a town because he didn't know what else to do. The Chief took him to jail and booked him for murder, but secretly hires one of the best lawyers to represent the man. So the entire book was about how the defense and the prosecution both fought along the lines of euthanasia and mercy killing and that sort of thing.

But along its side path, was a story which affected me a little more than the main story itself. Maybe it was because I could somewhat relate to the storyline. It was about the Police Chief who started an affair with a woman who worked for his wife. And while his wife was a doting, loyal woman, never over talking her husband, never standing out of his shadow, this honourable man went about sleeping with this other woman whenever his wife was out of town helping with the murder case, claiming to be completely in love with her. The character of his wife, grew with the plot, as she became more and more strong willed, and sure of herself, until in the end, her tall, strong husband found himself looking up to her.

Now what touched me the most, wasn't so much the cheating and the blatant lying of the man to his wife, but more about the concept of love. There is always someone who loved more in a relationship. Someone who gave more and took less. The Chief's wife definitely gave more. And the cousin who was on trial for murder, loved his wife to death, literally. Even in How I met Your Mother, there is always the Reacher and the Settler (Episode 13 Season 5).

And truth be told, sometime last year, in my darkest days apart from the boy, I felt like I was the Reacher and I was something he settled for. I felt like I loved more and took less. And that weighed me down like a ton of bricks. It's not true, I guess, but with the distance, and the fact that one of us was living in happening central while the other was in the land of absolute silence from 8pm forth, it kinda made it feel true.

Needless to say that was not a happy time. heh.

It's a good Picoult book, as expected. I loved it. I just popped over to the local Auckland City library this morning and got me another book. A Marian Keyes this time. Something a little less drama, and a little more Devil Wears Prada kind of fiction I think. It's called Last Chance Saloon. =)

Oh, and for clarity's sake, no, my boyfriend did not cheat on me. He's a keeper, this one. =)

Saturday, March 06, 2010

Random musings of week 1.

I'm done with 1 week. 11 more academic weeks to go.

I made a life plan last year for the next 7 years of my life. In it, I had planned to stay on in NZ next year, after I'm done till my graduation ceremony in October. Unfortunately I just realised my student permit would finish by August 31st. So I guess I'll definitely have to leave anyway. So, yay? =)

I was at my Manager's farewell party last night. We're all the same age, but I was the only one there not married. If you asked me how that made me feel, I actually found myself liking the idea of being married. Heh.

It dawned upon me that when a bunch of girls get together to talk, they all have pretty much the same issues with their boyfriends, husbands, in laws. Which only proves to show whatever you're experiencing, chances are its what the next girl can understand with as well. That being said, there are exceptionally different guys who tend to play the girl role sometimes, while their girlfriends/wives play the man role. *shrug*

I was talking to Ai Ching on MSN just now and realised she is only turning 20 this year. Has she always been THAT much younger than me?

I feel old.

Waiting for the train outside Sylvia Park, I saw 2 guys with 2 baby strollers and 2 toddlers dressed the same way. Each man was looking after presumably their own son. A thought crossed my mind. When I'm married and have a kid in future, I'm gonna ask my hubby to take him out with a friend's hubby and kid. I think it'd be quite cool to see 2 dads baby sitting their kids together.

Despite managing to go out and meet up with some friends over the weekend, the best moments here so far has to be the little messages the boyfriend leaves me when I least expect it. =) Thanks.

Thursday, March 04, 2010

One Tree Hill

One Tree Hill is crazy. I just watched the latest episode of the latest season.

With just one episode it managed to open up my floodgates, making me miss my dad and mom, making me miss my brothers, making me miss D, making me miss my friends staying close by, and making me miss my grandmothers.

I think I cried just as badly as I cried for My Sister's Keeper. And I cried because I really really want to be at home to hug all of the above but I can't. Not right now.

I was talking to D last night and I think I poured pretty much all of my emotion out onto him. haha, I hope I didn't scare him away just yet. Babe, =). I'm just at a point where I don't think couples should be apart. Couples should be together. It just gets a bit too hard sometimes.

Why do we do this? Why do we embark on adventures by ourselves, sometimes, when it is double the fun to embark on it together?

Well, I'm just glad I'm halfway through mine. And I'm counting down to June now. I'm going home for winter break. One lonely winter is more than enough. I don't need to experience another one again.

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

A Milestone Of The Heart

I saw this scrawled on the ground with chalk at the bus stop at main campus this morning. Loved it.

A milestone of the heart
Has the wind for a friend
Is inspiration for the soul
That stay's true to the end.
A milestone of the heart
Is a road's lightened breeze
Is the spirit of a friendship
Heard laughing in the trees.
A milestone of the heart
May be but a disguise
Is the spirit of the earth
And the whispers of the wise.
A milestone of the heart
May beat steady and slow
Is the making of the wind
Where kindred spirits grow.

© By M Rene Riel

In between classes

My schedule this year has too many breaks in between classes. Which makes my day very long. Hate it.

Air Asia is having sales again. However it isn't helping me at my time of need i.e. June/July 2010. Bummer.

If i prayed to God, whoever/whichever God would like to listen to me, I'd pray for cheap tickets to Malaysia this winter.

Please please please give me cheap tickets in June.