Fresh Coconuts

I have coconut trees in my backyard but they are too tall that nobody among my assistants can climb them and harvest their fruits. For the past 4-5 years, the fruits of our coconut trees are just left to mature and dry from the tree until they just drop to the ground. This is the reason why I have a collection of young coconut seedlings ready to be planted in my backyard. So far, I have counted 36 seedlings ready to be planted.

In the last few days, I would ask my assistant to look for fresh coconut in the neighborhood and in small stores to be purchased for my daily drinks. After spending a few pesos for this activity, I thought of asking my assistant for anybody who could be paid to harvest fresh coconuts in one of the trees in the backyard. Why would I buy fresh coconuts when I have with me coconut trees with unharvested fruits? The task to look for somebody to climb took some days to be done. Somebody presented himself but his asking fee to climb and harvest the fruits was too high where he would put a cost for every single fruit that could be harvested. I really don’t know if this is an effect of the on-going Covid-19 situation in the area where anybody would take advantage to earn money due to the present predicament.

Finally, my assistant was able to get a good deal/arrangement with a guy who would do the job. In less than 30 minutes, the job is done and I paid the guy. It was a “win-win” situation. I was happy that I have already a stock of fresh coconuts which is good for the coming weeks.

It had been for the past two days that I have been drinking fresh coconut juice and eating its tender meat. I usually open up two pieces of coconut fruits everyday. These harvested coconuts will take a longer time to be consumed. Before I drink the juice, I usually put it in a pitcher and have it cooled in the refrigerator together with the tender flesh or meat. The coconut juice is now a part of my hydration on a daily basis.

Heritage Boots

As I mentioned in my previous post, I became interested about US Heritage Boots during the Covid-19 Lockdown Period last year and it was in September 2020 that I started to focus on my readings and research on the Internet on a particular brand which is the Red Wing Shoe which is based in Red Wing, Minnesota, USA. I found out about this shoe brand from a Facebook Page carrying the title with the name of the shoe brand and I started to make a research about the brand on the Internet. Their almost daily posts on the said Facebook Page had attracted my attention and I found out that there is only one store in the Philippines (Grind Store) that is an Authorized Dealer (AD) of the said brand. But the branch of the said store that was very active (until this time) in advertising their Red Wing Shoes Models was their store located at Glorietta 3 Mall, Makati City. In one of those days, I decided to contact through Messenger the Sales Representative (Abby Gonzaga) and asked her about the availability of the different Models in their Store. And the rest is history!

Last October 9, 2020, I bought my first Red Wing Shoe which is the Iron Ranger 8111 Amber Harness. Personally visiting the store once the Covid-19 Lockdown was downgraded to a lesser restriction was the best decision I have made to purchase the said boots. Through my readings and research, the most asked question among new buyers is the correct sizing for the boots. The best way for me to determine my proper size with the Iron Rangers is to personally try each shoe size that is near to my usual shoe size in boots and dress shoes. I usually use Size 9 1/2 in my running shoes (whether they are road or trail shoes); Size 9 in my Dress Sneakers like Converse, Onitsuka Tiger, and NIKE Basketball Sneakers; and Size 8 in my dress shoes and dress boots. Since these Heritage Boots are considered as Work Boots, I thought I need a bigger size since they are made of leather. Finally, I was able to “zero-in” my correct size with the Red Wing Iron Ranger which is Size 8 D (Medium width).

Being a retired military man, I have been familiar in using Boots as it is part of our Combat Uniform. However, my size on Combat Boots had been one size bigger which is Size 9D which allows much toe space for thicker socks and tendency for the feet to expand in prolonged marching, hiking, and standing. Almost 2/3 of my military service, I have been using Combat Boots and I know the feeling how to walk, hike, march and even jog/run with them. Actually, two years after I retired, I bought a Dress Boots from Cole Haan which has the size 8D and with a shaft length of 5 1/2 inches. The said boots had been used for so many years that it was only last month that I needed them to be resoled and polish them again. I think there is truth in the observation that retired or former military personnel would always go back wearing their boots again in their civilian lives! Those boots would be dress boots, work boots, heritage boots, or simply replica or copy of their service boots.

So, the Red Wing Iron Ranger 8111 Amber Harness is my first Heritage Boots which is Made In The USA. I really love them as I was able to naturally “break them in” as weeks of wearing them go by. By the way, Red Wing Shoe is a family-owned business company that was founded in Red Wing, Minnesota, USA in 1905. The Iron Ranger Model got its name when the said boots was made for the iron miners in those times. The leather that composed the boots was thick and sturdy which became popular among the workers in the first decade of the 20th century.

Red Wing Iron Ranger 8111 Amber Harness

Here is the description of the Red Wing Iron Ranger Model as I have copied from their Website:

The Iron Ranger was originally built for iron miners in the 1930s. In the decades since, it has grown indispensable for owners from all walks of like, thanks to its iconic style and longevity. The six-inch boots signature feature is a leather toe cap that is as distinctive as it is durable. Each pair develops a personalized fit and custom comfort over time thanks to leather insoles and a cork midsole that form to the feet. The boots are built with a Goodyear welt and Puritan triple-stitch construction, and brass speed hooks provide precision lacing and a visual hit of hardware. The Iron Ranger is anchored with a Vibram 430 Mini-Lug outsole.

In the next posts, I will tell you about my review on this Heritage Boots. Thank you for reading.

A New Direction, New Stories

Starting today, February 11, 2021, this blog will be anything under the sun. Aside from running and my outdoor lifestyle and experiences, I will be making some stories of anything I can think of, whether it is about fashion, food, news and current events, my personal opinion on events, and maybe some repost of things that I want to share to my readers.

I think this will a way and good reason for me to write again in this blog. As I grow and become older, I have been not so consistent with my daily runs as my runs had been transformed to hiking/walking in my backyard and within my playground. After I have finished a 4-month “virtual race” last year, I had to rest and instead of going back to running, I have managed to do some hiking for the past months. Such hikes would last up to 2 hours as my longest duration and on regular basis, a short hike lasting for one hour. Sometimes, I would carry a backpack with weight in it for more effort and challenge.

Since September 2020, I became interested with Heritage Boots which by chance was able to discover them on Facebook. After one month of reading and researching about the history of Heritage Boots in the Internet, I became interested in them. Luckily, there is a popular brand which is the “Red Wing Shoe” that is locally available in my country. Through a Facebook Page, I finally decided to try the said brand and bought one pair of boots.

With my subscription with You Tube and being able to revive my Channel, I found out that there is a lot of videos about the Red Wing Shoe Heritage Boots. Maybe, this could be one of the reasons why I finally decided to buy my first pair of such brand. On October 9, 2020, I bought my first pair of the said brand with their Iron Ranger Model 8111. I have posted two videos of this particular Heritage Boots Model in my You Tube Channel since then. I will post a link of these videos in the next days to come.

Having bought an Iron Ranger 8111 Amber Harness (colored brown) in an Authorized Store of the said brand in Metro Manila had given me the comfort and peace of mind of getting the right size for my feet. Sizing of new users of the Red Wing Shoe is always the most discussed topic in the Internet. Whether in FB Pages, Groups and Internet Forum, this “sizing” topic (how to get the right size) would always flood the comments section in the You Tube Channel and other Discussion Groups. Because I was able to try different sizes in the said store, I was able to zero-in my right size. Just like in any other International Shoe Brands, I shoe size is 8D! Most of my Signature Brand Shoes are size 8D except for my Corcoran Jump (Combat) Boots which is 9D, the Combat Boots that I used on the last 10 years of my active military service. I think I will have a separate story about my Corcoran Jump Boots which is also considered as one of the Heritage Boots that is Made In The USA.

Since my purchase with my first Red Wing Iron Ranger 8111 Amber Harness, my interest now is being directed to Heritage Wear or Vintage Wear and their respective stories that go with them.

As I don’t want to create another blog site for this topic (Heritage & Vintage Wear) and for my personal opinion and other things that I could think of, I decided to use this website just to continue with my subscription with WordPress. So, practically I am back to blogging again.

Kilian Jornet’s Failed Attempt To Break 24-Hour Running Record

Kilian Jornet (KJ) is presently the world’s best mountain trail ultramarathon runner who won almost all the hardest and most challenging ultramarathon trail races; mountain running races; and had ran from Camp #1 to the peak of Mt Everest twice without the aid of any oxygen support. He is from Catalonia, Spain but he is now residing in Norway with his family (wife and child).

Last October 17, 2020, he ran a 10K flat road race at Hytteplanmilla, Norway and finished with a time of 29:59 minutes which was his first experience and exposure in road running. A few days after, he announced, together with his Shoe Sponsor, Salomon, that he is going to attempt to break the 24-Hour Endurance World Record of 303.5 kilometers (189 miles) made by Yiannis Kouros on October 4, 1997 in Adelaide, Australia. The event was called “Phantasm 24” where KJ will run with other Norway’s fast road marathon runners in an Oval Track in Mandalen, Norway. The objectives of the event were: (1) Break the World Record of Yiannis Kouros in the 24-Hour Run; and (2) Promote the New Salomon S/LAB Phantasm shoes for Road Racing. The event was scheduled on November 27, 2020 with much hype in the printed media as well as in the Internet. It was featured LIVE on Facebook.

Barely one hour before the Start of the event, I posted a video on my You Tube Channel with the prediction that Kilian Jornet will FAIL in his attempt to break the course record.

Prediction/Forecast On KJ’s Attempt To Break The 24-Hour Record

I watched the LIVE Coverage of the Event from the Start on Facebook up to the middle of the 6th Hour and then went to bed. As I woke up the following day, I was surprised to find out on my Facebook Newsfeed that Kilian Jornet had dropped from the event at 10:20 hours covering a distance of 134.8 kilometers with a freezing temperature. According to the video posted by Kilian Jornet on Instagram, he felt intense pains in his chest and started to get very dizzy and exhausted. His medical team immediately checked on him and he was advised to be brought to the hospital for some tests.

Hereunder is the comparison of the number of laps between Yiannis Kouros Run and Kilian Jornet’s Run:

Comparing from the 1st Hour to the 4th Hour, Yianni Korous and Kilian Jornet were the same in the number of laps that they have finished. But on the 5th Hour, Kilian was behind 2 laps and that started the downfall in Kilian Jornet’s attempt to break the Course Record of Yianni Kouras of running 303.5 kilometers in 24 hours. And at the 5th hour, KJ was overlapped for so many times by another runner, Sebastian Conrad Hakannson, who was a consistent winner of the Oslo Marathon Triple Race (Marathon, Half-Marathon, and 10K Race in the same day).

On the 6th hour, I have observed that he was spitting something on the track which was followed with a “pit stop” and I knew that something was wrong. From there, I went to bed and as I woke up the following day, I saw on my Facebook Newsfeed that KJ had dropped at 10:24 hour mark and finished 134.8 kilometers or 83.13 miles. 

What went wrong? Here are my personal opinion about KJ’s attempt to break the course record:

  1. Lack of training on flat road and oval track, most specially on track where you have a lot of curves. Even if the direction of run is changed every 4 hours, the body needs to adapt to this kind of running for a considerable time. Yiannis Korous took a lot of attempts to reach the 300K distance in the past.
  2. Nutrition could be the most important factor that KJ failed to consider. A runner could not survive with only Gels and drinks for Timed Events.
  3. Colder Environment: there is less perspiration on body liquid loss but a runner needs more energy to generate the normal heat or temperature for the body. Solid food is the only source of calories that generate heat to the body.
  4. Higher elevation vs Sea Level performance: Yiannis Kouros did his run in a place where the elevation is not much or near sea level elevation. KJ should think if it is better for him to train in higher elevation and do the attempt on a lower elevation.
  5. According to his Salomon Team, he was feeling dizzy and have some knee pain developing. So officially, it can be deduced that his dizziness was brought about by a nutrition problem and his knee pain could be attributed to some muscular deficiency.

In due time, Kilian Jornet will bounce back and break the 24-hour run record with more training and some adjustments in his strategy. Yiannis Kouros did attain or did the course record with a single attempt, instead, it took him almost 13 years with lots of failures in this feat.

14-Day Rest & Recovery

I have been absent from blogging because, first, I was not motivated to write anything for the past days; second, I have to take a rest from my daily running for the past 14 days; and lastly, I have been busy trying to “break-in” my newly bought heritage boots which is Made In USA (my first time to own a pair of boots made in the USA) around the house. So, instead of running with my sneakers/running shoes, I have been walking around the house, in my backyard, and on the streets within my neighborhood. I guess, I will make another blog about my experience and review about the said boots in the future.

It was a blessing in disguise that I have decided to have a 14-day rest and recovery from my daily running workouts. I was able to gain more weight and was I able to rest and have at least eight hours of sleep every night. During the past 14 days, I was able to eat whatever available to be cooked and I have to alternately eat fresh foods like vegetables, poultry, and meat. I was able to eat fresh fruits that was harvested in my backyard, too! However, on these days, I was not able to drink those sweetened cola drinks but more on water. In the end, I was able to gain more weight, about 4-5 pounds and feel to have regained some strength.

This morning, October 24, Saturday, I have decided to start running again in my Backyard Loop. Maybe, I was inspired by what had happened last weekend at the Big Dog’s Backyard Ultra where the winner, Karel Sabbe from Belgium, was able to run for 75 hours where he was able to cover a distance of 502 kilometers. This feat is a Course Record for the said event. In this event, runners have to run a loop course of 6.7 kilometers every hour until only one runner remains.

I have been thinking of doing this kind of format of running in my Backyard Loop but for the past months that I have been doing my “Virtual Runs”, I have observed that I have slowed my pace and speed. Due to old age and lack of speed training, I could barely finish 6.7 kilometers in one hour in my Backyard Loop. On my first month of virtual running in May, I can still run the said distance in one hour but I have only few minutes to take time to rest before I start again for the next lap-hour. Maybe, I could only last for 4-5 lap-hours until I am exhausted from being able to finish the said distance every hour.

With this predicament and my present situation, I have to adjust and had been thinking since Tuesday that I have to reduce my target distance to cover within one hour. Finally, I have found a good balance between having a leisure run (without much stress and intensity) and being able to cover some distance without any worries. I thought of starting again from my 14-day rest and recover by doing the MAF (Maximum Aerobic Function) Training with the goal to finish 5 kilometers in every hour. (Note: I have discussed and posted a post in my past blogs for the said training procedure).

On my first day of the MAF, I was able to cover a distance of 5 kilometers with an average Heart Rate of 127 beats per minute (bpm) which is slightly higher than my target HR of 122 bpm even if I forced myself to hike and walk if I see that my HR was getting higher than 122 bpm. Anyway, I was happy that I was back again to running today.

After Running For 5 Kilometers

I will be maintaining this MAF Training for the next month/30 days. I will call this the One Hour In 5 Kilometers Per Day In 30 Days Challenge. Follow me as I go through with this new Challenge.

Thank you for reading this blog.

Some Tips In Traveling To The Philippines During Covid-19 Situation (As of October 6, 2020)

In the past few days, I have read in my Facebook Newsfeed about a question being raised/posted by a Filipino who is based in the United States on what is the protocol to expect and follow once an arriving passenger gets into the Manila International’s Airport.

Through the experience related to me by a Filipino Tourists who was stranded in the United States for almost six months due to the pandemic brought about by the Covid-19 virus and through the experience of a friend (US Citizen) who arrived from the United States (also) due to an emergeny situation to attend to in the Philippines, the following are the steps/procedures to follow once a passenger arrives at the airport.

  1. Tourists have to take a Covid-19 Rapid Test/Swab Test which is paid by the tourist once he/she arrives or exit from the airplane. The cost for each test is about US Dollars 95.00. One has to accomplish some form stating you Name and e-mail address or contact number where the Rapid Test Result will be sent once the result is available.
  2. After the Rapid/Swab Test, tourist has to arrange for his Hotel Accommodation at the Airport where he will be transported immediately. Car or Taxi Services are available in the airport to provide the necessary transportation to your Hotel of choice. Hotel Accommodation and Taxi Service are not FREE for tourists.
  3. Tourist is advised to stay inside his Hotel room until the result of the Rapid Test/Swab test is sent to the passenger. Usually, the test result will be released and sent to the passenger in a few hours through the e-mail address stated in the Form filled-up during the Test.
  4. If the Test is Negative, you can already the leave the Hotel and proceed to your final destination. If your final destination is within Metro Manila, you can take the Taxi services available at the Hotel. If you are Positive, you can have the option to stay longer in the Hotel or take some advise from authorities of the Department of Health on what are your available options to be able to observe and strictly implement the 14-day Quarantine Period for you.
  5. If you are an OFW (Overseas Filipino Worker) returning to the Philippines, the Rapid/Swab Test is FREE at the Airpot. After the Swab test is done, the OFW will then be transported to a government-designated accommodation facility/Hotel for them for FREE. Just the same with the tourist, they will wait for the release of the result of the Covid-19 Test. If the test is negative, they can leave the Hotel and proceed to their Final Destination. If found positive, contact the Department of Health for further steps for your immediate 14-day Quarantine Period to a Government designated facility or have the option to stay in your residence and follow the 14-day Quarantine protocol.
  6. Just in case, the tourist has a connecting flight from Manila to another destination in Visayas or Mindanao, he/she should have made made the travel arrangements during the time when his/her ticket was purchased for Manila. If not, this travel connection should be made once he/she arrives at the Manila International Airport. A Travel Pass from the Philippine National Police (PNP) is a requirement for this trip. (Note: There is a PNP Desk at the Airport where to ask for information and request for this Travel Pass)
  7. The Travel Pass will facilitate a coordination with the Local Government authorities in your final destination for your trip from the Local City Airport to your final place of destination. You will be asked to strictly adhere to the 14-day Quarantine Period in your Final Destination.
  8. Always observe the wearing of face mask, face shield, no talking in enclosed space, washing of hands with soap and/or alcohol (after touching or holding anything not in your possession) and social distancing (of at least, one meter apart)

For further information, please click the links below:

Keep safe always and thank you for reading! Cheers!

Ten-Minute Video: Team PAU @ 2020 IAU 6-Hour Global Virtual Solidarity Run

The International Association of Ultrarunners (IAU) invited the Philippine Association of Ultrarunners (PAU), the National Ultramarathon Federation of the Philippines, to join the 2020 6-Hour Global Virtual Solidarity Run which was held last August 29-30, 2020. This event was attended by more than 40 member countries with a total of 426 athlete-runners throughout the world.

Team PAU was composed of 9 Male and 9 Female runners coming from the different regions of the country. Due to the Covid-19 Lockdown restrictions, all the runners were advised to do their running in their place of residence, whether on the outdoors or indoors (on treadmill machine). Team PAU represented the country in this event.

Here is the Video of Team PAU during the event:

Team PAU Video @ 2020 IAU 6-Hour Global Solidarity Run

Thank you for watching. Cheers!

(Note: Please subscribe to my You Tube Channel for more running adventures and stories in the Philippines. Thank you!)

13 Years With WordPress

Seven months before I retired in the military service, I started to write my stories on running on WordPress. Since then, it has been 13 years that I have posting my running experiences and adventures to my readers. Those past years were great where I was able to inform, share, and inspire others to start running as part of a healthy lifestyle. I hope this blog had contributed to what I have intended to do since then.

At the present, writing my stories in this blog is my way to motivate myself to go out in the outdoors to maintain my physical fitness through running and hiking and to maintain a healthy mental fitness/attitude by writing my personal stories and other information/stories that I would share to everybody. As I grow older, writing is becoming my daily habit to exercise my brain and thinking ability. And since last week, I have extended or expanded my stories to any information that are happening around me and to the environment.

Thank you, WordPress for this opportunity to share my stories as told by an old and ordinary average runner. Thank you also to my subscribers throughout the world, a gratitude coming from a blogger in the Philippines!

Cheers for more stories in the future! Thank you for reading this blog. Stay safe always!

2020 Virgin Money London Marathon Race Highlights

Months before the conduct of the 2020 London Marathon Race, it was announced that the scheduled April event will be held despite the Covid-19 pandemic situation and it will be held on October 4, Sunday, with the participation of selected world elite athletes coming from selected countries. Most significant in the announcement was the participation of the two of the fastest marathon finishers in the world: Eliud Kipchoge of Kenya who is the reigning world record holder in the marathon with a time of 2:01:39 hours in the 2018 Berlin Marathon and Kenenisa Bekele of Ethiopia who is the world record holder and Olympian record holder in the 10,000-meter event with a time of 26:17:53 minutes and second fastest time in the marathon with a time of 2:01:41 hours which he set in the 2019 Berlin Marathon, two-second slower than Kipchoge’s time.

Aside from the World’s Men’s Elite runners, the World’s Women’s Elite runners were invited to join the race. This is to include the Elite Marathon Runners from Great Britain. The rest of those who are supposed to participate and had been picked in the lottery to join the 2020 London Marathon had been asked to join in a virtual run and be able to complete the run within a period of 24 hours. Unfortunately, I registered for the third time in this marathon event and as usual, I was not been able to be picked up in the lottery.

In the months, weeks, and days before the London Marathon, there were so many information on the social media and printed media about this “duel” of the two fastest marathon runners in the world; Kipchoge and Bekele. With its hype, I tried to research on the Internet on the past competitions where these two great long distance runners had joined and competed with each other. Bekele was already a World and Olympic “Star” in the 2000s while Kipchoge was trailing behind him in the Oval Track Competition Races. However, during the 2010 and later years, both runners had shifted to road running on marathon races. Kipchoge started to shine and perform consistently in Marathon Races in Europe. However, Bekele had also his winning races on the road until he was sidelined with some injuries. Bekele is 38 years old while Kipchoge is 35 years old. But, these two runners had been always pushing the bar for the world record in marathon up to this time. The sub-2:02-hour time in the Marathon Race are being held by these two greatest runners in the world.

Kipchoge & Bekele Poster (From Google/Facebook)

In my past blog, I posted and predicted that Eliud Kipchoge will win over Kenenisa Bekele in the 2020 Virgin Money London Marathon. However, I was still confident to predict that the winning time will be within the 2:02-2:03-hour range knowing how the place looks like when I had the chance to visit London in 2018. The London Marathon was held along the streets surrounding the St James Park near Buckingham Palace which is a loop-course covering a distance of 1.33 miles for each loop. Runners have to complete 19+ loops to finish the Marathon distance of 26.2 miles while is completely flat.

Two days before the race, Bekele announced to the media that he was withdrawing from the race because of an injury on his left calf muscle which he got two weeks before on a sprinting session. With this news, I was confident that Kipchoge would win the said race.

I watched the LIVE coverage of the London Marathon in the evening of Sunday, October 4, 2020 (Manila Time) after I found out that Brigid Kosgei of Kenya won the Women’s Championship with a time of 2:18:58 hours. She is the current Marathon World Record Holder with a time of 2:14:04 hours which she achieved in the 2019 Chicago Marathon Race. Worthy to note in the women’s race is the “sprint run” of  Sara Hall on the last 50 meters to pass Ruth Chepngetich to the finish line winning the race as the First Runner-Up in 2:22:01 hours. This is Sara Hall’s Personal Best in the Marathon.

Kitata & Kosgei: Overall Champion & Women’s Champion (Picture From Google)

On the last loop of the Marathon, Eliud Kipchoge could not react on the blistering pace of the faster runners and he did not win as I had predicted. Tola Shura Kitata of Ethiopia won as the Overall Champion of the 2020 Virgin Money London Marathon with a time of 2:05:41 hours. He was the First Runner-Up in the 2018 London Marathon where Eliud Kipchoge won as the Champion. Eliud Kipchoge finished the race in 8th place with a time of 2:06:49 hours and he said in his post-race interview that his ears got blocked during the last loops that he could not concentrate and focus with his run. However, he was gentleman enough to accept the result of his performance. Kipchoge and Bekele will be back!

Thank you for reading. Have a good day and week ahead of us.