Return to Roth

It’s now July, one of the best months in the year ever because, you know, my birthday’s in it. I’ve been wondering about how to celebrate this year just because it seems like I have everything I would want or need right now.

But I’ve been getting little signs of sorts from unexpected places, like the spiffy new passport cover from Globe Telecom’s media launch for their Slipstream event. Or the really nice cover feature Overseas Filipino World magazine did on yours truly. And the German embassy granted me a visa.

#ChallengeRothTeamPHI 2014
all roads lead back to Roth

So in just a few days’ time, I’m flying back to Germany to revisit the world’s biggest long-distance triathlon, Challenge Roth. One of my biggest regrets from last year when I raced it was that I didn’t get to do any sightseeing (save that done from my bike and on my two feet running the marathon). This year, I’m a spectator and the self-appointed cheering squad for all the Filipinos who are entered in the race.

Last year, there were four Filipinos who took on the course which has seen world records on the ironman distance set by Andreas Raelert and Chrissie Wellington — yours truly, Ani de Leon-Brown, Arland Macasieb, and a gentleman based in the Middle East (sorry, sir, I don’t have your name).’s Carlos de Guzman was on the start list but wasn’t able to start.

This year there are eight set to fly our flag across the finish line. Meinardo Opiana from Smart Tri Team won a Challenge Roth package at the 2014 Challenge Philippines. We have the Bangkok-based Jeff Laguitao of Thailand Triathlon and Cycling Team. And of course my friends from Yellow Cab-Tri Clark Team: Jeremy David, Alan Galang, Mac Mandap, Jumbo Tayag, Abe Tayag, and John Villanueva.

Challenge Roth stands out from other races because it’s an experience both for the participants AND the spectators. With its schedule of events leading up to the race open to the public as well as race day itself (the website suggests routes for spectators to follow), if you’re following athletes around to cheer for them it won’t be too hard. You also can’t help getting swept up in the emotion of the crowds cheering athletes on.

Although I’ve only done the race once, when I close my eyes I can still see myself swimming past the giant buoys in the Main-Donau Canal, cycle alongside beer tents at Eckersmuhlen and up Solar Hill, and run over the cobblestones of Roth into the finish line. I don’t have any desire to repeat this, but I’m excited for our boys to experience this for themselves and am looking forward to being there for them after they cross the finish line.

And this time, of course, I’m going to do all the things I missed out on last time: take a tour through Nuremberg and head up to Nuremberg Castle; run the many beautiful trails around Roth; swim at the public baths; attend the big town pre-race party; and head off somewhere else in Germany after the race via rail!

It’s going to be a great birthday present to myself, and I’m taking you with me via this blog. I’ll be updating and posting while I’m there so I can bring you all the action.

Now, time to figure out what I’m packing… :)

Purefoods Sexy Chix

I’m always on the lookout for quick, convenient eats that are still healthy. When I was sent a nice little care package of Purefoods Sexy Chix, I got all excited.

Purefoods Sexy Chix are made with Magnolia chicken breast chunks and packed in “guiltless” broth.

Purefoods Sexy Chix

If you want more excitement for your palate there are also adobo, arrabiata, and Hainanese variants. The arrabiata uses shredded chicken instead of chicken chunks.

Purefoods Sexy Chix

You can eat Sexy Chix straight out of the can, or you can dress it up with some of the suggested recipes on this website – My Great Food.

I consider myself a good cook who can whip things up from anything I can find in the kitchen. So I make sure I keep my kitchen well-stocked; Sexy Chix is a staple in my cupboard because I can add chicken chunks to anything I’m making for extra healthy protein.

Want to try Purefoods Sexy Chix out? Three lucky readers can win their own Sexy Chix goodie package!

Here are the mechanics:

  1. Visit My Great Food and look at the recipes section.
  2. Comment below what recipe you want to try making using Purefoods Sexy Chix, and who you would share the dish with.
  3. One comment/entry per person.
  4. Contest runs for one week. This is open only to Metro Manila residents. This contest has been extended to July 20!
  5. Three lucky winners will be drawn at random. They will be informed through email how to claim their Purefoods Sexy Chix goodies.

Cheers and good luck!

International Yoga Day with Certified Calm

For nearly 8 years, I’ve been practicing yoga asanas (or postures) as part of a general fitness regimen, and I credit the strength and flexibility I gain from yoga for how I’ve remained generally injury-free even through heavy training.

Last Sunday was International Yoga Day, and many yoga studios celebrated it with events and promos. Certified Calm, the country’s first and leading lifestyle store for yoga apparel and accessories, held “There’s Something About Yoga” at their Two Parkade Bonifacio Global City store.

International Yoga Day w/ Certified Calm


39th Milo Marathon Launch

What keeps people coming back to the Milo Marathon? Aside from the fact that it’s an institution in the running community, Milo still is the most prestigious marathon in the country, whose top Filipino winners are crowned the Milo Marathon King and Queen.

39th Milo Marathon

Now, after many years of sending champions to races around the world, Milo has returned to its roots and will be giving its King and Queen a chance to race the Boston Marathon! (more…)

Challenge Camsur: Hot and Spicy!

Four years ago, I came to Camarines Sur as a last-minute substitute runner for a relay. As I went through the run course I saw the suffering on the individual competitors’ faces. It definitely gave me perspective on how prepared I would have to be to attempt my first half-ironman. I would do just that two years later, but it was in Camsur I started to dream. “What if? Why not?”

Camsur is where it all began for the boom of Philippine triathlon and for a number of us, we signed up for Challenge Camsur due to the nostalgia factor. But every race brings something new. For me, Challenge Camsur was the hottest, spiciest race I’ve ever done.

Challenge Camsur