Kikay Reviews: Sufferfest “Chrysalis” Brick Training Video

For the time-crunched triathlete with no easily accessible cycling routes — most of us, actually — bike trainer workouts are a necessary evil. You plop yourself down on a stationary bike (or your racing bike locked onto a trainer) and spin away either staring at a wall or at a TV while wishing you were outdoors instead. I’ve learned to love the MX Plus workouts by blasting music into my ears with my Yurbuds and turning each interval into a mental game: “I just need to hold on until this interval ends…”

Then @thesufferfest on Twitter sent out a call for triathlon bloggers to try out their upcoming offering: “Chrysalis”, their first bike-and-run training video.

I took a deep breath and sent a reply. A few days later, the preview video was mine.

The Sufferfest
The Sufferfest

I’ve heard about Sufferfest videos a lot from my tri buddies. They are downloadable training videos using licensed footage from big cycling races like the Tour de France, Giro d’Italia, Paris-Roubaix, Tour of Flanders, the Road World Championships, and more. These videos, at around $13 a pop, have gained a reputation for being the toughest cycling training videos. EVER. Continue reading “Kikay Reviews: Sufferfest “Chrysalis” Brick Training Video”

Next Step Triathlon Challenger Camp

Less than a month to go before Challenge Philippines, so it was high time for a big training weekend on the course in Subic/Bataan. Thankfully, I didn’t have to go and organize one on my own. All I needed to do was sign up for the Next Step Triathlon Challenger Camp and just follow the sessions, and I would be set!

Next Step Tri Challenger Camp
Challenger campers posedown! (photo from Raymond Racaza)

Camp Day 1 started with an open-water swim on Friday afternoon at Camayan Beach Resort, which I missed because I still had work in Manila. There were a lot of campers signed up for Challenge Philippines as a training race before their full ironman at Ironman Melbourne, so some practiced with wetsuits.

Next Step Tri Challenger Camp
open water swim (photo from Next Step Tri)

I planned to drive from Manila in the wee hours of Saturday morning to make it in time for Day 2’s bike out.

I wasn’t counting on my car’s rear tire blowing out on the expressway. Continue reading “Next Step Triathlon Challenger Camp”

My Best Year Yet

So, what happened two days ago?

I posted this on Facebook:

I actually forgot that it was my blog’s 4th anniversary on January 21, but I guess subconsciously my mind knew it was a big day for me. :)

(If you’ve been following my posts carefully over the years you’d know that the number 4 is my favorite. I was born on the fourth of a month. Four is also such a tidy little package — the four corners of a square, the second square number, the smallest squared prime, etc. It also signifies completion in Judaism.)

Wow, I can’t believe it’s really been 4 years since I threw myself wholeheartedly into this whole journey that started with aiming for my first marathon… and now for me that’s just the little bit people do at the end of an ironman.

I usually score an interview with someone who was influential to me in my previous year, but I didn’t have anything prepared this year. Instead I spent some time looking back at all the stories I’ve shared in this blog over the past four years. Which were instrumental in shaping who and where I am today? Continue reading “My Best Year Yet”

Subic Bay International Triathlon 2014 on April 26-27

The grande dame of Philippine triathlons is here again! Subic Bay International Triathlon is happening on April 26-27, 2014.

Subic Bay International Triathlon on April 26-27, 2014
Subic Bay International Triathlon

This is the 21st year of SuBIT, and encompasses 5 events:

  1. Asia Cup 2014 Series Event: Under the supervision of ITU and ASTC. Top local and international elite athletes get ITU points for Asian and world ranking, and qualification to major international competitions.
  2. National Age-Group Championships: Want to race an Asia Cup 2014 Series event or the 2014 World Age Group Championships? Age Group female and male champions will be sponsored by TRAP. Top finishers will be declared champions and runners ups in their respective age categories. Only finishers in SuBIT 2014 are qualified to be endorsed by TRAP to the 2014 World AG Championships in Edmonton, Canada.
  3. Inter-Club Competition: The top 3 triathlon teams with the fastest aggregate times will be declared the National Triathlon Club Champion and runner ups.
  4. National Triathlon Try-Outs: Excellent and promising performers will be qualified and considered in the National Pool and will have the opportunity to represent the Philippines in international competitions. Slots are open in all categories, including Junior, U23 and Elite Open.
  5. Asian Paratriathlon Championships 2014

Continue reading “Subic Bay International Triathlon 2014 on April 26-27”

Aerotropolis Half Marathon

I love racing and I think that’s what motivates me to keep training. When a race gives you a great athlete experience it’s hard not to be motivated even more. That’s exactly what I got from the Aerotropolis Half Marathon last Sunday.

Aerotropolis Half Marathon
running at Aerotropolis Half Marathon (photo from RARMArtinez Fotorun)

It was a cold, cold morning at below 20 degrees Celsius as I drove up from Manila to Clark, Pampanga where the race was to be held. Continue reading “Aerotropolis Half Marathon”

Next Step Triathlon Camp Series 2014

Triathlon may be an individual sport, but there’s no reason people can’t smash themselves in the same place at the same time. ;) It’s why I love going training camps even just for a weekend; these gather together a group of people with the same goals and/or target races and there’s wonderful camaraderie around even in the midst of all the suffering.

The Next Step Triathlon Camp Series returns in 2014 with three camps scheduled prior to major races. The Challenger Camp is next week, January 24-26.

The Next Step Triathlon Camp Series 2014
The Next Step Triathlon Camp Series 2014

The Challenger camp is designed to help people training for Challenge Philippines. It kicks off on Friday with an open water swim in Ilanin Bay, where the Challenge swim start is. Saturday is bike training day and will take participants out onto the full hilly Challenge course in Bataan. Sunday, participants will train on the Challenge run course in the Ilanin Forest Reserve.

I will definitely be there!

Camp registration fee is P1,000, which includes the support vehicle, Gatorade and Enervon HP drinks, and a bike mechanic. (If you’ve seen that Challenge bike course, you will be thankful for the SAG.) This is exclusive of accommodations, by the way. To register, please email abrahamerbel@yahoo.com or nextsteptri@gmail.com.

Pinnacle Camp on June 7-8 will be held at Pico de Loro, and Exceed Camp on September 19-21 will be at Nuvali. For more information about all the Next Step Triathlon camps, please visit The Next Step Triathlon Facebook page.

Pinnacle Camp Weekend
with camp mates at the last Next Step Tri camp

Ask Kikay Runner: Motivation

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, tweet me, or leave me a message on the Kikay Runner Facebook page.

Mae Ann asks: Hi kikay runner! I would like to inquire if you do one on one training for free as I badly needed [sic] someone who can train and motivate me and help me get back in shape. Maybe I could join you when you run. I got interested into [sic] running and triathlon as I wanted to start having a healthy living [sic]. I wish you could help me.

Hi Mae Ann! I’m not a coach and don’t train people, but I can relate with the need for motivation. Continue reading “Ask Kikay Runner: Motivation”