Tuesday, December 27, 2011

In search of a healthy "LIFESTYLE"... Running?

Healthy lifestyle. What does this mean? Balanced diet? Exercise? Mental fitness?

Hey there readers, you must be wondering where was I for the past months away from this blog. Nothing has been updated on the sports arena. Where am I? Well, to tell you the truth, I have just shelved my photography as a hobby somewhere, and been away from the auto-sporting arena for almost a year now.

Reason being, change of working career; leading me to be more focused on my current working career.

I used to work and sweat myself out at work due to the heavy lifting of goods and stuff, assuming that it was OK not to exercise as I say to myself, "hey, I've already shed sweat during my work time, and that's enough right?".

The very first day I step into the new working environment, I was approached by my newly acquainted colleague, who happens to jog after office hours at the nearby public park when its clear skies in the afternoon, else, running up and down the 16-floor steps to shed sweat. He said to me, "You know what? We need to keep a healthy lifestyle. Do you exercise?"

At first, it never occurred to me that the question he asked me the very first day would have brought me this far. Definitely, I did tell him that, once in a while, YES, I did shed sweat, but not more than once a month, I think.

Day in, day out. My normal routine will be coming to the office, sitting in front of the computer screen for more than 6-hours, straining my back, my eyes, my brain, everything that my body and soul would offer to the slavery of WORK and computers. After a few weeks, I find that I am losing weight. Is this a good sign? Without exercising, I am actually losing weight!

Then one fine day, I took the opportunity to buy myself a pair of shoes, and without any pre-training, without any preparation, signed up for a 10-kilometre run organised in celebration of "International Firefighters' Day". I stood up to the challenge of my office mate, Hisham, that I am able to do the 10-kilometre run without stopping for breath.

Fair enough, I had to make 4-stops to complete the run on that day. Where has all my fitness gone to? I could have run a 21-kilometre run without shedding a single sweat back then, without stopping to catch a breath.

It then struck me, yes, I did shed sweat during my daily routine in my previous work. Yes, I did lift some weights at home to shed some sweat off of me. But, was it enough? Question answered; NO!

I then started Google-ing up, "maintaining a healthy lifestyle". A healthy lifestyle by right, is choosing the right food, maintaining a balanced diet, keeping fit by exercising, NOT SMOKING, having a healthy mind and many more. Its just doing what best maintains your health and life. Its all about BALANCE.

After the 10-kilometre run incident, I then took the challenge by my dear friend, Hisham, to follow him and continue running, taking it easy and progressing the distance as we go along. It started with a leg-crunching, heart-exhaustion and mental-disablement, keeping up with the first few runs round the ~2.4-kilometre circuit once every two days. That's just ONE ROUND in every two days. That too, my heart was pumping really hard, and my bones were aching, and the lungs were just working its every muscle to catch every breath to supply sufficient 02 to the heart. Will I succeed?

In two months, with constant running, I have managed to increase my pace and distance to 2-full rounds round the 2.4-kilometre track. That's like 4.8-kilometres! In total, I was already doing 14.4-kilometres a week or 57+ kilometres a month! Was it good enough?

Well, lets try and put it to my body figures. Well, I did not lose much weight; just 4kg. Waist? Still at 34". But will I be able to finish a 10-kilometre run? Indeed I did! In just 2-months running, I managed to run the next 10-kilometre run at a constant single pace finishing in 1 hour 20 minutes. No doubt, it was like 3-times slower than any other marathon runner, but, it was an achievement to myself.

But why continue running? What does it mean "A healthy Lifestyle" for myself? Well, 9-months has passed, and I have endured many short marathon runs, the farthest I've done is a 12.4-kilometre run. All completed without any muscle break, without any hard effort during the runs. All it needs was a constant discipline to keep fit, running, at least twice a week. Did it cost much? NO! The only investment I've ever splurged on is on the shoes. Finding the right shoe is important. But, that's it! Just a pair of shoes, and you're on! I'm still not at the "Healthy Lifestyle" point.

The main thing is, that, we are straining ourselves, sitting at our desk, day in, day out, staring at the computer screen, attending meetings, straining your fingers at the keyboard and mouse, breaking your brains thinking of what to type in your reports; yet, we are not moving our muscles enough. We may be eating right, but the heart is not being trained well to keep fit. We are watching our weight, but not doing it right. Starving is not the solution. Starvation does not mean you are fit! That definitely is not a "Healthy Lifestyle".

Running. I would recommend to anyone. Everyone. All you need, is a pair of shoes. What good is it to us? Well, I find it to be:
  1. A way to relieve stress
  2. Keeping fit at a very minimal cost
  3. Losing weight (not for me really, but it think if I eat right, I'll shed more weight off)
  4. Increase stamina
  5. FUN
  6. Believing in oneself
My target, is to run a half-marathon by end of 2012. Is it achievable? Well, I've come this far, and there is no stopping me. Its just the joy of running. The satisfaction when you cross that line. It is just not describable, but you need to experience it yourself. Well, many thanks to Hisham, my running buddy, always there to guide me and push me, reminding me to keep it going. Till then, happy running!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Yamaha's 50th Anniversary of Grand Prix Racing Celebration at Assen

Yamaha is set to celebrate its 50th Anniversary of Grand Prix Racing at the historic circuit of Assen, Netherlands. The 2011 Assen TT will witness a full livery change by Yamaha Factory Racing as part of ongoing activities to celebrate the iconic Japanese manufacturer's 50th year of Grand Prix Racing.

Jorge Lorenzo and Ben Spies will be looking to put the previous race at Silverstone behind them in order to focus on delivering a strong performance and result at Assen, a track favoured by both. Lorenzo has won the Dutch GP circuit in all three GP classes, while his team mate Ben Spies took pole and a race win in 2009 in the World Superbike Championship.

Spies has added that he is looking forward to the coming race at Assen , to improve his position and hope for a podium finish, after finishing fourth in last year's race. He added that the Assen track is a fast track which he enjoys riding it. It reminds him of his childhood days watching the race at Assen on television back then.

The team manager is positive with a strong result in Assen and he mentioned that the team has been looking forward to the race in due to their special livery unveil.

Assen Circuit, sometimes referred to as the cathedral by race fans worldwide due to its status and historical significance in racing, is the only circuit to have been part of the Grand Prix World Championship calendar since its inception. The circuit, which celebrated its 80th Anniversary of TT racing last year, has undergone many changes over that time. The track is one of the highly technical tracks in the Grand Prix with its high speed chicanes and varied camber changes.

source: Yamaha Factory Racing Press

Monday, June 20, 2011

Weider HSV-010 Rules Sepang Circuit

Round 3 of the 2011 Autobacs Super GT Series was held at the Sepang International Circuit from 18-19 June 2011. The pilots for Team Weider HSV-010, Takashi Kogure and Loic Duval, drove a superb race from start to the chequered flag.

The team started from pole position after securing it during the GT 500 qualifying session. Takashi Kogure secured the pole position during a blasting pace set in the Super Lap session with a time set at 1 minute 55.984 seconds; 1.227 seconds faster than their lap time in the Qualifying session.

Team Weider HSV-010 completed the Race to 46-laps of the 5.542-kilometre Sepang International Circuit with a total time of 1 hour 33 minutes 34.849 seconds, followed by Team S Road MOLA GT-R, drivers Masataka Yamagida and Ronnie Quintarelli, in second, while Keihin HSV-010's Toshihiro Kaneishi and Koudai Tsukakoshi finishing third, just 14.198 seconds and 32.487 seconds behind, respectively.

In the GT-300 category, drivers Nobuteru Taniguchi and Taku Bamba of Team Hatsunemiku Goodsmile BMW, drove their BMW Z4 GT3 to victory, completing the race in 1 hour 34 minutes 10.601 seconds, with a total of 42-laps round the Sepang track. The team practically lead a great race throughout till the final 3-laps of the race.

The BMW was challenged closely by team JIMGAINER Dixcel Dunlop 458 lead by Tetsuya Tanaka and Katsuyaki Hiranaka, during the closing stages of the race with Tetsuya Tanaka closing up on the Z4. Both teams were bumper-to-bumper, with just 1 last lap to the cheqeured flag.

It was a close battle at the end of the race, with the Ferrari 458GTC settling for second placing, 0.776 seconds behind the Z4. Yutaka Yamagishi and Hideki Yamauchi of Team Pacific NAC Ikamusume Ferrari in their Ferrari F430 managed to finish third, 46.432 seconds away from the leader.

The teams are now headed back to Japan for the next race of the 2011 Autobacs Super GT Series which will be held at Sugo Circuit from 30-31 July 2011.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Repsol Honda Racing podium at Silverstone

Casey Stoner sealed his 27th victory thus securing the Championship lead in the MotoGP standings after a wet race at the AirAsia British Grand Prix MotoGP Race with team mate Andrea Dovizioso finishing second.

Jorge Lorenzo lead a rainy start of the 20-lap, 5.902-kilometre Silverstone Race Track, being chased down the straight followed closely by Marco Simoncelli and the two Repsol Honda riders.

Steady rainfall and as the track conditions worsen, Lorenzo highsided out of third position on lap 8 of the race, making the Silverstone race the first he did not finish since 2009.

Securing third placing in the MotoGP category was 'Texas Tornado' Colin Edwards, after piloting the Monster Yamaha Tech 3 bike to a podium finish. Edwards, who broke his collarbone last week in practice at Circuit de Catalunya, started from eighth on the grid, rode a consistant race throughout. His consistency benefited from the setbacks of Lorenzo and Simoncelli, earning him, his first podium for the season.

Rossi on the other hand, struggled with his bike to secure sixth position with his team mate Hayden finishin fourth. His team mate Hayden, on the Ducati, found a very good setup for the wet conditions.

It was a good team result with Hayden's fourth and Rossi's sixth positions secured, as the Italian limited damage in a challenging weekend, while the American posted the fastest lap of the race and finished just off the podium.

Lorenzo in an interview, stated that he was somewhat disappointed with the result as the crash was due to a mistake of his own.

Casey Stoner now leads the championship standings with a total 116-points, 18-points clear from Jorge Lorenzo in second, while Andrea with a total 79-points in third. Rossi still holding his fourth in the championship standings with just 68-points, while his team mate Hayden of the Ducati Team in sixth with 60-points.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Auer Scores EutroInternational's 100th Win

Austrian youngster Lucas Auer, scored his 100th win at the Asian Festival of Speed held at the Sepang International Circuit from 28-29 May 2011 in the JK Racing Asia Series Round 5 handing the trophy to EuroInternational owner, Antonio Ferrari.

Auer, in a media interview said that the win is for the team.

Auer's dominance in the Series is proven when he bagged another win in Round 6 in the afternoon's race, extending his lead to 116-points in the championship standings.

The young Austrian has managed to bag five wins out of the six races held at the Sepang International Circuit, stating that he is confident racing in Sepang. He added that this is a result of consistent testing held back here in Sepang and he enjoyed a good line here.

"The weather has been good. With the exeption of the rain during the qualifying session, it's been sunshine all the way", he added.

Irfan Ilyas of team PETRONAS MOFAZ Racing meanwhile, was contended to settle with second placing in both races Round 5 and 6. However, he has stated that he might face a greater hurdle debuting next in Sentul International Circuit as the series heads over to Indonesia.

Irfan during the press conference stated that he has never raced in Indonesia, and he is nervous heading there next. Though, he is confident that after a few rounds of practice there, he will be able to pull-off finishing for podium.

Teammate Nabil Jeffri, coming in third in Round 6, looks forward to a better race next in Sentul International Circuit, as he is still set for the championship this year, with a lot of catch up to do.

The JK Racing Asia Series is currently the only Junior Formula that provides a unique opportunity where the drivers are given a platform to compete in front of the Formula 1 fraternity. On three occasions that the JK Racing Asia Series will support the Formula One Grand Prix, which will be held at Malaysia, Singapore and India.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Malaysian Super Series 2011

Round 2 of the Malaysian Super Series sees the domination of Dilantha Malagamuwa, scoring his double win in both rounds 1 and 2 last weekend. The Sri Langkan driver now faces tougher battle in the remaining rounds as he prepares life without his mean Lamborghini LP560 machine.

Dilantha, in a post race interview, said that his LP560 will be used for the GT Asia Championship, which means, he will only make do with his Porsche 994 to continue in the battle for this years' championship.

"It will be different now that I will not have the Lambo. It's going to be very difficult as the other drivers are clearly much faster this season. It's going to be very tough", the two-time MSS Champion added.

It always has been a close battle between Dilantha and his close friend, three-time MSS champion, Mok Weng Sun of Clear Water Racing Singapore, who managed to score third and second placing for round 2 and tipped to be the strongest driver for the next three rounds in the absence of Dilantha's Lamborghini.

Malaysian Azlan Shah Kamarulzaman was denied the opportunity to deny Australian Glen Allerton from winning the opening round after the second and final race was cut short by rain, giving him only half points for victory.

Azlan, who came in second in the opening race, was only awarded 12.5 points for his win in Race 2 with Allerton getting 10 points and taking the Australian total haul for the round to 35 points against Azlan's 32.5 points.

Azlan said that it was unfortunate that the race had to be cut short due to the rain, as he was already leading the race on Lap 3, going all out for the win after starting from second on the grid.

Allerton, who rides for Team Looi Motor Singapore riding a BMW S1000R said that he was happy with the win and that it was a good decision to stop the race in view of the safety of the riders.

"It was getting slippery and I had to be very cautious in my approach to keep pace with Azlan", Allerton added, in his debut for the Malaysian Super Series.