Kikay Reviews: Yurbuds Inspire for Women

I don’t know who started the trend of running or working out with full-on headphones, but I can think of three reasons why you shouldn’t. Reason #1: YUCK! Think of all the sweat and moisture trapped between your earlobes and the “cans”. It’s a fungus-fest waiting to happen! Reason #2: Aren’t they heavy? Sure some headphone models hook over your ears so they don’t fall off, but can you really turn your head without accidentally pulling them off?

Reason #3: Why wear cumbersome headphones when Yurbuds is here? More and more people are turning to Yurbuds to keep music pumping in their ears. Ironman athletes Chris “Macca” McCormack and Mirinda Carfrae both use them in their training sessions.

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Yurbuds is now the #1 selling water-resistant sport earphone in the US, and they’re continually innovating!

At last year’s Ironman 70.3 Philippines I received a pink version of the Ironman Inspire line. Whenever brands decide to create women-specific versions, frequently the design philosophy is merely “shrink ’em and pink ’em.” While the pink Ironman Inspire earbuds fit my ears perfectly, I know many other women who find them still too large.

Instead of just shrinking the earbud, Yurbuds conducted research to understand what it is we women actually need. As a result, the Inspire for Women is tailor-made for women’s ears.

Yurbuds Inspire for Women
Yurbuds Inspire for Women

Continue reading “Kikay Reviews: Yurbuds Inspire for Women”

Ask Kikay Runner: How Should I Breathe While Running?

This is a section on my blog where I answer questions people ask me. If you have any questions for future Ask Kikay Runner entries,Β email me or join Xpert.PH to get access to more expert advice!

Hillrunner asks:

Hi Ms. Noelle I’ve been running for more than a year now. I’ve joined a lot of races and always wanted to find out if there is a proper breathing technique when running. Sometimes I think I’m working out my lungs too much.

Breathing provides oxygen which helps fuel our muscles. When you think of your body as an engine, your lungs are its cylinders and how much you breathe is your intake capacity to help burn fuel more efficiently and power the engine to go faster.

Here are two tips to help you breathe better on your next run: Continue reading “Ask Kikay Runner: How Should I Breathe While Running?”

Color Manila Nite Run Wrap-Up

I hope you all had fun at last Saturday’s Color Manila Nite Run. I wasn’t able to race the 5K category anymore after I led the 10K warm-up with my co-instructors from 360 Fitness — there were so many people queued up to start, and I still needed to change into my running gear… I decided to join the afterparty only, since this race was just a big excuse for BGC to throw a street festival during their Passion Fest.

Color Manila Nite Run
with co-instructors Gelli Victor and Jen Antonio

(Just a side note: BGC will probably never allow another night run due to the growing residential and commercial activity in the area. So, this was the last one!)

Unlike the Color Manila Run where the main draw was the colored powder thrown on participants during and after the race, the Color Manila Nite Run was a festival of light: glow bracelets (which I received as part of my race kit), shirts w/ glow-in-the-dark print, black lights, and fireworks!

Color Manila Nite Run
with race hosts Jekoy Valle and radio DJ Chloe

Color Manila Nite Run

Continue reading “Color Manila Nite Run Wrap-Up”

What to Expect After Your First Marathon

Most full marathon training plans will take you up to 32 to 35 kilometers for the peak long run before tapering, so for first-timers the last 10 kilometers on race day is unknown territory. How your body responds to the stress, how your mind either plays games with you or toughs it out, how your will flags or pulls you through. So much happens then, and it really does change you forever.

Then you wake up the next day, and you’ve never prepared for this!

The following are what you can expect to happen after your first marathon. It’s all completely normal for the distance you’ve done, and it does get better. Multiple-time marathoners (and ultrarunners) will tell you recovery is easier the next time around. Continue reading “What to Expect After Your First Marathon”

Going Hot: Warm-Up Moves for Running

Running is one of the hottest sports in the country now. Just check out the next road race and you’ll find thousands of pavement-pounders raring to go at the gunshot. However, before these runners get sent out the gate, race organizers will have someone lead them in a short warm-up, and for good reason: warming up helps more blood flow to the muscles, preparing them for the exertion to follow.

A good warm-up should take your muscles through the range of motion they will be undertaking. This is called a dynamic warm-up, and helps prevent injury from strains and tears caused by the muscle going through a movement it was not prepared for. It is different from the traditional warm-up which involves static stretching: muscles held in one position to help them lengthen and cool down, which is the opposite of what you want your muscles to be. You perform dynamic warm-up moves actively, firing your nerves and muscles in the specific movement pattern they’ll be doing. This ensures your muscles do not lose any warmth or “springiness”. (Research has shown that holding a muscle in a static stretch decreases its explosive twitch capabilities.) Because dynamic warm-ups are matched specifically for the workout you’re about to do, they also help keep your mind focused and sharp on what’s coming up. Continue reading “Going Hot: Warm-Up Moves for Running”

Warming Up at the 7-Eleven Run 800

Warming up before running is very important, especially at races where you want to perform your best. While many experienced runners already have their own warm-up routines and habits, it’s always a good bonus when race organizers provide someone to lead a proper warm-up.

Whenever I’ve had a chance to lead a warm-up (PDA Run, BMAP Great Bank Fun Run, and the 1st Runfest), I teach runners how to warm up dynamically. If you check out Monica Torres’ blog post To Stretch or Not to Stretch, she summarizes why a dynamic warm-up is more effective than the static stretches we’re so used to. (I also wrote an article about this in Action&Fitness Magazine in 2009. Will repost it here soon!)

So when 7-Eleven asked me to lead the warm-up at their Run 800 last January 20, 2013, I created a five-minute set to music. Then I realized I would have to do this 10 times for the 10 waves of runners. Yay?

7-Eleven Run 800
7-Eleven Run 800

Continue reading “Warming Up at the 7-Eleven Run 800”

Rebisco @ 50: The Gold Rush on April 7

Rebisco @ 50 The Gold Rush on April 7
Rebisco @ 50: The Gold Rush on April 7

Rebisco (yes, the biscuit and snack brand from my childhood!) is celebrating 50 years, so they’ve partnered up with Xavier School Batch 88 to bring runners The Gold Rush on April 7, 2013.

The race not only commemorates Rebisco’s golden anniversary, but also raises funds for scholarships to Xavier School. :)

Categories and registration fees are: 3K (P500), 5K (P650),and 10K (P750). Aside from the support this gives to the scholars, your reg fee also gets you a singlet made from high-quality sweat-wicking fabric, a chip-timed race, a raffle stub for the chance to win an HTC smartphone. For 5K and 10K runners, you also get an X-Sports Band from The Bead Shop which you can use on your runs!

Rebisco @ 50 The Gold Rush prizes
Register for Rebisco Gold Rush to get an X-Sports Band and a chance to win an HTC smartphone

The X-Sports Band is an adjustable silicone bracelet you can wear when you go for a run. It has a metal plate where you can have your name and emergency information engraved for safety and identification purposes. Very useful especially if you run alone; you never know what might happen.

When you register for the 5K or 10K in-store, you can take the X-Sports Band stub to participating The Bead Shop stores (SM Megamall, SM North EDSA, Glorietta, Power Plant Mall, Robinsons Place Manila) to claim your X-Sports Band. If you register online before March 17, you’ll get your X-Sports Band delivered to you with your race packet!

Registration started on February 15 and will end on March 31 or until supplies last, whichever is earlier. You may register at the following Chris Sports outlets: Festival Mall, Glorietta, SM Mall of Asia, SM Megamall, SM North EDSA, or Fitness & Athletics BGC. Online registration is at

Race: Rebisco @ 50 The Gold Rush
Date: April 7, 2013
Venue: Bonifacio Global City
Reg Fee: P500 (3K); P650 (5K); P750 (10K)
Registration Sites: Chris Sports (Festival Mall, Glorietta, SM Mall of Asia, SM Megamall, SM North EDSA); Fitness & Athletics BGC; online registration
More Info: Xavier School 88 Event Page