Clutter Express: Reebok Bloggers’ Night, Total Fitness, and GAG-O


It seems to me that everything is running at top speed these days. There’s just so much going on – mostly at work – that I sometimes have to sprint in order to keep pace. And when that happens, I swear that I can see my heart beating through the fabric of my shirt!

First things first.

Two weekends ago, I introduced you to Purple Pippa, my second pair of Zig Glam who carried all 97lbs of me from the starting line of the Fuego Sunset Run all the way through the 5k finish line. A few days ago, Bruno, Basia, and Purple Pippa, welcomed another addition to the growing Reebok family — feminine yet tough as nails TERRA. Terra is the offroad/trail shoes featuring the Zig(Tech) technology which comes in sushi green and flat grey colours. Terra will be seeing hard action in the upcoming 50k Nuvali Trail Challenge organized by Ultramarathoner and frontRUNNER Magazine owner Jonel Mendoza. Wanna know just how lucky I am these days? It seems I will be the only one in the country who owns this pair as Terra won’t be released in the local market – at least (not) for now! I just love, love, LOVE Reebok!

Terrific TERRA

Incidentally, I will have Dennis the Running Pinoy running by my side in Nuvali. If you remember, Dennis was my rock when I dared to run my first ultramarathon last year at the PAU 50k Mt. Pinatubo Trail Challenge and landed second behind the unstoppable Camilla Brooks. He never left my side when he could just as easily have, at any given time of that harrowing – but very fulfilling! – 9 hours or so of trail running adventure. Because of that, Dennis is now officially the Batman to my Batgirl!  Fellow Team Reebok ambassador Titanium Runner will also be there running the same 50k distance.

Batman and Batgirl of Ultra Trail Running

With The Running Pinoy and Titanium Runner doing Nuvali 50k with me, how can I not cross the finish line in one piece? Now IF I land another podium finish, would it then be safe to assume to I am officially ‘made’ as a runner, nay, ultrarunner? Not yet? Okay then. Next stop: PAU 60k and BDM 102.

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More on REEBOK. So last Monday, Reebok held the ZigTech Run Bloggers’ Night at Paul Calvin’s in Burgos Cirle, The Fort. Close to 40 runner-bloggers trooped to the venue, including everyone’s favorite The Bull Runner Ms. Jaymie Pizzaro, in a show of solid support to Reebok’s first-ever run to be held on the 5th of June. TEAM REEBOK was there, along with the official photographers, and of course, Ms. Yoya and Ms. Villy of Reebok Philippines – the two ladies responsible for making us perform and look good while running!

With Ayn and Beep Beep of Team Reebok

Flanked by Titanium Runner and frontRUNNER's Jonel Mendoza

Bloggerful of Fun at the Reebok Bloggers' Night

To all our runner and blogger friends, thank you for your love and support! And again, to all runners who have yet to register for the REEBOK ZigTech Run, you have until the 4th of June to register for the race. Don’t miss this one, okay?

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Have you picked up a copy of this month’s TOTAL FITNESS magazine, yet? What the?!? We’re more than halfway through May, you should already have a copy in your home, car, office, and even your Ex’s bedroom!  Read my article on the Ultimate Wake Championships held last January and another feature on running.  Besides that, there are tons of interesting articles on motoring, sports, health, relationships and a few other topics of great interest.

Shameless plugging by the writer.

***

And finally, here’s something FIERCE, FABULOUS, and FUNNY from The Grupong Rainbow…

GAG-O’s SHANGHAI SURPRISE Day 1!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QoBXxNvTAwE

Remember that time we went to Shanghai for a quickie tour? Well, we didn’t just go all touristy in the city labelled as the Paris of the East. In between train rides, coffee breaks, hunting down cuties and what-not, we actually shot some scenes for our youtube show GAG-O!

I watched the episode more than ten times already and quite frankly, I am getting sick of my face and my nasal voice, so can I pass on the viewing duties to you guys and make us even more famous than we already are? Great! And while you’re at it, why don’t you click on the share or email button and send it to whoever you think needs some major cheering up.

Okay. Now. I. Am. Good.

***

Oh wait. Happy birthday to my gorgeous boyfriend who is celebrating his 31st on Friday, 20th of May!  We have come  a loooong way, you and I. Here’s a toast to so much more in the coming years. ILY.

Happy birthday, Luv!:*

Vignettes from (the) Holy Week.


At KM0 with Team U Runners.

I.  VISITA IGLESIA Run

I just had an incredibly good Holy Week. So good, in fact, I feel as though I’m still traipsing along the happy alley in my fuchsia pink flats. Growing up in our little hometown in Bicol, I have some vague recollection of how  we used to spend Holy Week there – usually with several trips to the parish church and endless stream of prayers. But it’s been nearly two decades since I left my hometown, so maybe things have changed a little, if not drastically. One thing I never got to do while still in Bicol is Visita Iglesia or church visits, which, apparently, is a Filipino Roman Catholic tradition (is it really exclusive to us Pinoys?) of visiting 14 churches in commemoration of the 14 stations of the cross. So when I saw in our running yahoogroup that some people are planning to do a Visita Iglesia run, I immediately signed up. You see, I have not really been making the trips to churches since I became a Christian sometime back.  I backslid a few times, I readily admit, but I always find my way back somehow.

In front of Manila Cathedral.

Malate Church.

Channeling my inner Kenyan by running Totoy's pace - for about 10ft, haha.

Mother or Perpetual Help Parish in Baclaran.

So anyway, we had set the run date for Maundy Thursday at KM0, fronting Luneta Park. But because I didn’t know how to make my way to Luneta, one of the runners picked me up. Thank you, JJ! Not to play damsel in distress or anything like that, but I am totally hopeless when it comes to directions! When we reached our meeting spot, the group was nearly complete. Apart from Totoy and Ronel, both of whom I would see in the few races I would join when not gallivanting elsewhere, the rest of the runners were strangers to me. But obviously, not anymore after the perfunctory introductions and running side by side with them for several hours. After snapping a few group photos, we slowly made our way to church no. 1, the majestic Manila Cathedral. From there, we went to San Agustin Church which is practically right next door to the cathedral, and on to 11 more churches before we capped our visita iglesia run at Santuario de San Antonio. We started at 6:30am and by the time we covered all 14 churches; distance totaled 30 kilometers according to Totoy’s garmin; and it was lunch time already and the sun’s rays were already a bit harsh on the skin. Too bad some of our runner friends did not finish the whole stretch with us, because when we ended, there were only five of us left – happily wolfing down unhealthy stuff at McDonalds! But hey, if you just ran 30kms under the heat of the sun, don’t you think you deserve that Oreo McFlurry? Thought so too.

Somewhere in EDSA.

Huli si Manong! Ang intense naman ng tingin sakin.:p

Don Bosco Parish.

I wore Bruno my ZigNano and once again, I was mightily pleased by his performance. Not even once in those 30kms we ran did I feel any pain or discomfort. Usually, even with my other running shoes the performance of which I can likewise swear by, I would already get blisters or feel as though my toes are being crushed. But Bruno cradled my feet, so I was nice and comfy all throughout.

Heat training for BDM102 next year?:)

Never sacrifice form according to Shaun T.:D

On Good Friday and Black Saturday, I pretty much kept to myself – eating very little and watching Season 2 of this new-ish series I’m completely wild about: Lie To Me. Tim Roth is such a character, don’t you think so? And that accent, my oh my.

***

Photowalling. After all, photos or it didn't happen, right?:)

II. KAOS the Musical

Then came Sunday and it was better than most of the good Sundays I can trace back to my youth! First, Ro and I attended the Easter Sunday service at The Fort and I could not have asked for a better way to celebrate Christ’s resurrection. Though it was still early by the time Church service ended, I decided to go straight to Newport City so I can have a leisurely lunch and get us tickets to the 3pm showing of KAOS. I used some of my ResortsWorld credits to purchase 3 tickets and it’s nice to finally be able to put to good use the points ResortsWorldManila awarded me when I placed second at The Grand Fiesta run sometime in October. One of those races where I majorly lucked out because the elite runners decided to sleep in.

KAOS is a musical extravaganza showcasing some fine points of Broadway and marrying that with what one usually sees in Las Vegas. And no, I’m not talking about exotic performers here. I meant, the extravagance! The glittery lights! The breathtaking daredevil stunts! The fancy costumes!

While waiting for Cris to arrive...

With Princess Flora. My face is swollen because I dared to watch THE CURE the night before and shed copious tears!

Eric cozying up to one of the desperate sisters.

With some members of Kaos cast.

We were very impressed with the production and while sitting on the plush and ultra-comfortable seats at the upper balcony of the 1,500-seat theater – which also boast of the largest LED wall ever build in the Philippines, as well as state-of-the art lights and sounds technology – we couldn’t help but wonder how much was spent in bringing KAOS here. But whatever that is, we can collectively say that the show was worth every bit of the one thousand ++ you pay at the ticket counter.

The girl who played the role of the heroine, Martha Joy, certainly has vocal prowess that on some scenes, her powerful voice would just drown out Gian Magdangal’s. Gian played the role of the Prince who was out to look for that ‘somebody to love’. Oh, incidentally, Martha Joy is half-Pinay and was the youngest to make it to Top 8 of Canadian Idol.

If you haven’t seen KAOS yet or are not planning to, then maybe these treats will make you reconsider:

  • Seasoned acrobats from China and the Power Duo, a world renowned act from Belarus test the limits of physical endurance with their riveting performances and complete muscle control.
  • 5 stunt motorcyclists from Spain defy gravity in the astounding Cycle of Life that later on SPLIT in the middle
  • Wheel of death from Columbia, where one of the guys suddenly decide to jumprope while balancing on the turning wheel!
  • Human Time Machine performers from South America showcase superb balance and synchronization
  • Hip Hop dance champions Philippine All Stars energize the show with their awesome moves
  • Versatile veteran performer Joel Trinidad plays the scheming adviser
  • Live music performed by the Manila Symphony Orchestra
  • Live animals namely Kaos, the white lion; Sito, the white tiger; and Betty, the yellow tiger along with Spanish master illusionist and trainer, Enrique Polo.
So what are you waiting for? Head down to Newport City and treat your family to KAOS! Trust me, it’s just the kind of chaos you will like.
Oh, but before I let you sweet munchkins off the hook, here are some more photos of our KAOS-tic Easter Sunday – which, by the way, ended somewhere in Baclaran. Teeehee.

Photo by Mark Montalban.

I'm too sexy...but only on days ending in Y.:p

I just love this photo by Mark!

Cris liked the menu book so much he was all smiles...until food arrived.

Waiting...waiting...waiting...Our orders took eternity and a day to arrive. And even then, they weren't anything to rave about. Epic fail.

Clearly, one of those wala lang moments.

At least si Eric, may ina-achieve dito sa photo.

One last shot before we go to our final stop.;)

***

Emperor Eric and the GAG-O cast are at it again!

It all started with this music video.

And then it became a gag show ushered in by a successful pilot run; followed by the second episode which was aired just seven days after.

Here’s the fun part. The day before Emperor Eric, Aldz, and I were to fly to Shanghai with Cris who has yet to grace the set with his presence, we showed up at the studio to shoot the exercise video, Galaw-Galaw. I had just arrived from Malaysia on that day and did what any professional youtube actor would do – dumped my luggage at home; grabbed my costume changes; and met up with the rest of the cast. Ganyan talaga pag pro! Good thing, what initially started as a no-budget production seems to have now come to a little bit of money. Why? Aba nung taping, may KFC bucket and soda na sa set! So kahit straight from the flight and no food in the stomach ang lola nyo, I made it through the very complicated exercise and dance moves – choreographed, of course, by the Emperor himself! So maybe one day Emperor Eric will just surprise us with our TFs and maybe a even a hefty bonus!  Oh how I love surprises! *ROTFL*

Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you…GALAW-GALAW!

Travel: SHANGHAI (Will Always Love You)


Hecticity Tour Part II made its way to Shanghai, China over the weekend – thanks in large part to Cebu Pacific’s low fare promo and Emperor Eric’s prodding and very efficient planning. This tour, though not as hectic Rampaging in Beijing in October of last year, proved to be a very pleasant surprise for all of us. Not so much with the food (everything swims in oil in this place, no wonder we all gained unwanted lbs in just 3 days – epic fail!) or the breathtaking skyline at The Bund — but the people we’ve encountered. Looking past the language barrier – ordering food is such a hassle for non-Mandarin speaking people like us – everyone was generally nice, sweet and accommodating. We especially love the cute kids and their disarming smile – which were all captured very prettily by Eric using his camera.

Hecticity Tour(ists) hit Shanghai!

Goofing around while Cris fills out his Arrival Card. Lovin my Bose to bits! (Thank you, Babe!)

Welcome to Shanghai! (Guard stopped us from taking photos but we managed to sneak this one out!)

Compared with Beijing, we had lesser photos this trip but that doesn’t mean the fun and frivolity were any less. Eric, Aldz, Cris, and I had a great time and it was just what we needed to recharge.

So how about we go through my list of Things I Love(d) About Shanghai?

1. Lush gardens with flowers of every imaginable color — We were lucky to have arrived at Shanghai just after winter and the flowers have started to come out in full bloom. Cris, being a flower expert himself, knew most of the flower species and it is most entertaining to see his eyes glaze over when he sees his favorite tree or flower. True, we probably only saw Shanghai on the surface – What can we do? Three full days were all that we had! – but that surface, I must tell you, looks very good.  In fact, I think we saw more flowers and trees in Shanghai than in Beijing. With everyone so busy running around in Shanghai working and chasing after dreams of financial wealth, it amazes me how they still find time to work on (the) urban aesthetics.

At the Peoples Park

From Rampaging in Beijing to Shanghai Surprise

Verdant, lush gardens --- winner!

Flower power!

Shanghai romance...not!:D

Tree-lined riverbanks

Channeling my inner horticulturist.

2. Warm and accommodating people — This one’s a very pleasant surprise for us, especially coming from a not-so-pleasant experience with the Beijingians. In Beijing subways, we saw how people would push other people – never mind if they’re old or pregnant – just to make it inside the train before the door closes. In Shanghai, however, people are more considerate and less rough even in the subway. We even saw passengers forming a queue at the SuZhou train/railway station when we went there for a day tour!

Old China

Emperor and KC asking for directions....

Friendly people we met during the tour. Special mention to the honeymooning Indonesian couple Irin and Alex.

3. Which brings us to my third favorite thing in Shanghai, the bullet train! — On our second day, Emperor Eric urged us to go on a day tour in the outskirts of Shanghai to check out some of the cultural sites. We hopped on the bullet train and got off at the SuZhou station where we paid 125RMB each for a tour. The train was very clean; the seats were ultra comfortable; and the leg room is so wide you can play hopscotch if you want to! The train went as fast as 305km/hour and we didn’t even feel a bump! We paid 41RMB each for the train ride – currency well-spent, I must say!

Shanghai Railway Station

Cris, reliving his childhood memories of playing with toy trains!

Inside the train bound for SuZhou station

View from the train

4. Happy, shiny, cute chinky-eyed kids — I love kids but only the really cute ones and the fact that Shanghai gave us this in abundance made this trip a good one for me! Without actually meaning to, Eric was able to create a baby photo album with about 10 Chinese kids in all shades of happiness. They are a natural when posing for the camera – no weird poses or diva attitude most kids these days take to. The parents are exceptionally nice too! They don’t turn us away when we request for photos to be taken of their beautiful kids. They even encourage the young ones to smile for the camera or say xie xie to us after.

One of the many babies Eric would snap photos of.

Baby no. 2

Vicky with the chinese kids

5. Polite cab drivers — We took a few cab rides while there and we never had any encounter with the crocodile kind and that for us is a major plus! We only show the map where we have encircled the place/address we want to go to and off we go! They even give us exact change, how cool is that?!

Okay, we didnt snap photos of the cabbies but we have this! Our friendly tuk-tuk driver.:)

The GAG-O travelogue hosts looking very comfy in their tuk-tuk ride

6. The freshest, yummiest strawberries and grapes I have ever tasted! The photos say it all, I think. One bite and the sweet, fresh juices explode in your mouth like nothing you’ve ever tasted before. And it’s cheap at 10yuan a kilo!

Fruit-y goodness!

Strawberry fields forever...

7. Sights, sounds, and the ultra-vibrant nightlife — Although we’re not much of a partyphile (Aldz and I opted to just stay in the hotel on our first night; I transferred photos to my laptop and crashed out), the glitz and glamour of the city did not escape us. After all, Shanghai is not called the Paris of the East for nothing. On our second night, while temperature was unforgiving at 10 degrees, we went out to the shopping district so Aldz can check out Zara and a few other shops while Cris and I amused ourselves (by) people-watching.

Brrrr, cold!

When darkness falls, Shanghai shines brightly...

Channeling my inner diva --- in fuchsia pink!

9. Set aside the fact that China has over 1 billion people (India is fast catching up, we all know that), it may come as a surprise to many that there are so many places where one can hie-off to and go zen-like. It could be the trees and flowers and temples or the general feeling of security — Shanghai has truly debunked all our pre-conceived ideas and boy are we glad!

View from the temple

Little Venice

Kinda like Sims City, dont you think?

View from the ground

Postcard memories

Prague-ish?

Tale of the detachable shoe.

10. And lastly, I love Shanghai because it made me do the one crazy thing I NEVER thought I had the intestinal fortitude to do — be strapped on a seat and get thrown waaaay up, only to get plunged back to earth within seconds! And for this, I also give much credit to Cris because he was the one who bamboozled me to do it. I really did NOT want to given that I pee my skivvies at the mere thought of riding a ferris wheel or anything remotely similar, but when he said ‘Sige na! Si Aldz nga sasakay eh!’ I was trapped! I gotta tell you, the thing has not even moved a fraction yet but I was already screaming like a cat giving birth to a pony! And I continued screaming with tears streaming down my face at one point, until the 3-minute ordeal ended.

Cris the culprit!

...and he got Aldz to do it!

After resisting for a bit and in futility might I add, guess what I did next?

Vicky: "Ohmygoddddd!!! Never na!!! My heart!!! Naiiyak nakooo!!!"

GAG-O: In Which We Say ‘Take LIFE and its crazy turns with a bag o’ salt!’


GAG-O

What is GAG-O?

GAG-O! is an online gag show created by Emperor Eric Cabahug just for fun. And to spread peace and goodwill to all men. And to aliens too. Some content may be inspired by real life but everything should be taken with a bag of salt. Enjoy!

GAG-O debuted last 3 April with the wacky Willie Revillame and Sen. Ping Lacson spoof causing fun riot in youtube-dom. The video, which got good reviews from the GrupongRainbow’s army of 500 fans and viewers (the number is steadily escalating, that much we can assure you!), can be viewed here.

Encouraged by teary pleas of fans and believers from all over the world, GrupongRainbow promptly released the follow-up episode titled Sun of a Beach which, according to very reliable sources, is causing temperature to go past boiling point in some parts of the world. I wonder why.

GAG-O Who?

GAG-O boasts of a powerhouse cast of talented personalities deemed as experts in their respective fields. Let’s get to know them one by one starting with:

ERIC CABAHUG is a scriptwriter, songwriter, director, record producer, copywriter, journalist, and photographer. His works include the award-winning ‘DAYO’, the first all-digital feature-length Filipino animated film, a song recorded by multi-platinum recording artist Nina, a photo published in a Lonely Planet travel book, and a string of well-received television commercials featuring some of the most popular celebrities in the Philippines. He is an undercover demi-god.

ALDZ GALANG — A Communication Arts major from De La Salle University. A multi-awarded TV & Radio Commercial Producer. Aldz bagged his 1st TV AD of the YEar award in 1994 for AYALA CENTER WATERS OF MARCH followed by TIDE BABOY in 1999. He won several international recognitions under the creative direction of top creative OMPONG REMIGIO. Currently, Aldz services agencies like Campaigns & Grey, Publicis Manila, Ace/Saatchi & Saatchi and Leo Burnett handling Clients like Nestle, P&G, Wyeth, Rockwell Land et al. He worked as Post Production producer at The Post Bangkok. A Megastar calibre performer, singer and actor by heart. Hardcore fashion addict.

VICKY RAS — A woman of insatiable thirst for adventure and an incurable lust for life. She’s got the chronic case of elsewheres but her feet remains planted firmly on the ground. A corporate peon she most certainly is – clocking in an average of 60 hours a week, sometimes more if it includes holidays and weekends – but she keeps her creative side lubricated by writing for Men’s Health and Total Fitness magazines on various topics of interest including but not limited to sex, relationships, fitness, diet, health, and did I mention sex already? Oh yes gummy bears, the all-powerful S word. But try to look past the deadly curves, 23-inch waistline, and well-defined/toned midsection — this woman packs a wallop in the brains department.

BUDDY CARAMAT — Insurance Advisor by day, sought-after multi-talented Stage, TV, and Film Actor by afternoon, night, midnight, and all the way until the wee hours of the morning. Plays Badminton. Yoga Enthusiast.  Swims. One very proud Bikolano. A Student of Life — for life. Recently spotted playing Joni in the highly-acclaimed PETA production CARE DIVAS.

 

To follow:  CRIS BERNARDO