Happy Life Project Day 2 – Remove the Monkey

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So I ran today in the rain!

In Manila, when you hit that 6pm mark, get ready for horrendous traffic specially when it drizzles. Monsoon season is upon us! I conquered my monkey today that told me:

“Faye, its already late, you can’t run, it looks like its going to rain”

I don’t think I’m a gremlin, I will not multiply with water. I hurriedly dragged my butt off the seat, closed my laptop and dressed in my gear in3 mins. I was out in 5 and when I started my warm up, God said “let there be rain”.

I enjoyed it! It was a refreshing break from the typical run. Air quality was better, the dust settled.

Here’s to my monkey who keeps on making excuses – stop it!

When I attended a workshop in Bangkok, the monkey was a topic in one of our discussions. I eagerly listened.  So what is a monkey? The monkey is your mental chatter.  Women, this is real for us. It is highly active specially if we are nearing the our time of the month. This idea come from Buddhist who believed that the Buddha held that the human mind is filled with drunken monkeys flinging themselves from tree branches, jumping around, and chattering nonstop.

Typical monkey:

“What is my blog topic today? I have to write one today”

“Hungry, what’s in the ref…think about food”

“It is late, the bed is calling me, I can post this later in the morning”

“Should I get a carwash?”

All these thoughts are running in my mind at the same time. Crazy!

Daring to Live Fully (I’m reblogging the site’s content) mentioned 10 ways on how to stop these monkeys.

1. Know that Your Monkey Mind Can Be Tamed. The first step in your quest to calm your monkey mind is to know that it’s possible to do so. It’s very likely that up until this point you’ve allowed your monkey mind to run wild. But now you’re going to put an end to that. After all, your thoughts don’t rule you. You rule your thoughts.

2. Talk to Your Monkey Mind. When your monkey mind is in full swing, calm it down by having a conversation with it. Stop for a moment and listen to what your monkey mind is saying. Why is it upset? What’s all the raucous about? Then, do the following:

  • Is your monkey mind trying to remind you of something that needs to be done? Make a note of it and schedule the item so that your monkey mind doesn’t need to worry about it any longer.
  • Is your monkey mind anxious about something in the future? Reassure your monkey mind that everything is going to be fine. Conduct a worst-case scenario with your monkey mind, and come up with a contingency plan.
  • Is your monkey mind voicing resentment over something that happened in the past?  Realize that you need to create an action plan for dealing with your past so that your monkey mind stops bringing it up.

Sometimes your monkey mind just needs to be heard. Once it feels that it’s been allowed to voice its grievances and concerns, it will settle down.

3. Establish a Journaling Practice. This is similar to the point above, but it’s more deliberate. By establishing a regular journaling practice, you’ll be setting aside a window of time each day specifically to address your monkey mind’s concerns. Do the following:

  • Let your monkey mind know that every morning you’re going to give it 15 to 20 minutes to run amok.
  • During this time, write down what you’re thinking, what you’re feeling, and anything that you’re worried about.
  • Do this for the amount of time that you’ve allotted to journaling, and then stop.

Once the time is up, let your monkey know that it’s had it’s say for the day, and that you will not pay attention to anything else it says until the next day’s journaling session. Then, keep your word. If your monkey mind starts screeching at any other time of the day, refuse to place your attention on whatever thoughts the monkey mind is generating.

Tell your monkey mind the following: “Your session for today is over. Wait until tomorrow’s session. I’ll listen to you then.” Soon, your monkey mind will realize that it’s completely futile to make a fuss at any time other than during your journaling sessions.

4. Meditate. Meditating is the most effective technique you can use to calm your monkey mind. By meditating you’ll be training your mind to become still, and you’ll be regaining power and control over your thoughts. If you create a daily practice of meditation you’ll become skilled at quieting your mind and at silencing the monkey mind at will.

5. Practice the A-B-C Technique. A lot of the time, monkey mind is caused by your thoughts disagreeing with what’s going on. That is, there’s a contrast between your thoughts and your surroundings. When the present moment doesn’t align with what your monkey mind wants, your monkey mind begins to spit and howl.

The A-B-C technique can help you deal with the disparity between what your monkey mind thinks should be happening, and what is actually happening. Here’s how it works:

  • A is for “activating event”. That is, something happens.
  • B is for “beliefs”. Your monkey mind starts interpreting what’s happening based on your beliefs.
  • C is for “consequences”. As a consequence of the thoughts that you’re having about what just happened, you feel certain emotions.

The key to taming the monkey mind by applying the A-B-C technique is to question the beliefs that the monkey mind is relying on in order to reach the conclusions that its communicating to you. Here are three examples of questioning your beliefs:

  • Are people really obligated to act at all times in the way in which I want them to act?
  • Is it realistic to believe that things must always go my way?
  • Is it true that I have to perform well all the time?

If you reject the beliefs that your monkey mind is relying on to justify its temper tantrum, the monkey mind will no longer have a place to hang its hat on. And it will have no choice but to quiet down. You can read more about this technique in my post, A Powerful Tool for Your Happiness Arsenal: REBT.

6. Stop Assigning Meaning. The Spanish abstract artist Pablo Picasso once said the following: “If only we could pull out our brain and use only our eyes.” Although that’s a rather grotesque image, pause for a moment and reflect on the quote’s meaning.

What Picasso is saying is that you should simply allow your senses to take in what’s going around you, and then stop. Skip the step in which your monkey mind jumps in and starts judging, critiquing, and assigning meaning. Once you start doing this on a regular basis, you’ll notice that you begin to see things more clearly. In addition, you’ll be able to see much more than you did before.

7. Recite a Mantra. Interrupt your monkey mind mid-sentence and distract it by reciting a mantra. When you recite a mantra you draw in your scattered attention and focus it on a word, phrase, or sound. A mantra that I like to use is “Peace” (but you can use whatever mantra you want).

Although you can recite your mantra silently, it’s more effective if you it say out loud. That way, you’re also listening to the word, phrase, or sound, which engages your sense of hearing. The more senses you can stimulate, the easier it will be to distract your monkey mind.

In addition, by repeating a positive phrase–either to yourself or out loud–you’ll be listening to something positive, instead of listening to the negativity being spewed by your monkey mind.

8. Play a Game of Fives. The moment in which you hear the first monkey howling in your mind, you’ll know that it’s very likely that your mind has wandered off and that it’s no longer in the present moment. You can get the tribe of monkeys in your mind to quiet down by bringing your mind back to the present.

One way to bring your mind back to the present is by playing the Game of Fives. Pause your train of thought and notice five things in your environment. It can be five things you see, hear, or smell. Then, fully experience the sight, sound, or smell. You can do this by pretending that it’s the first time you’ve ever experienced that sight, sound, or smell, and by adopting a sense of awe.

The moment in which you do this all of your attention will be placed on the present moment, and your monkey mind will be silenced.

9. Engage Your Mind. I’m sure that you’ve experienced moments when your mind was completely still. Perhaps you were so involved in a book, or in a movie, or in your writing, that the monkey mind went silent. You just experienced directly what was going on, without your mind chatter giving you a running commentary of events, as they occurred.

This is because one way to silence your monkey mind is by engaging your mind. The next time your monkey mind is driving you nuts, look for an activity that draws you in completely, so that all of your attention is placed on what you’re doing, and there’s no attention left over to listen to the monkey mind.

10. Try Piko-Piko Breathing. Piko-Piko breathing is one of the basic practices of the ancient Hawaiian Huna philosophy. “Piko” means “navel” or “center”. The technique involves doing the following:

  • Breathe in deeply. As you inhale, place your attention on the crown of your head.
  • As you exhale, center your attention on your navel.
  • Keep breathing in and out as you switch your attention from the crown of your head to your navel.
  • Do this a few times.

The act of breathing deeply, centering the attention on one spot, and then automatically moving the attention to another spot will help you to calm your restless mind.

Quite lengthy, but thank you Daring to Live Life Fully for sharing the awesome tips!

Props to my E + C that sustained my 5km easy run.  Peach Tutu is back a little!

My Day 1 in my Happy Life Project

 

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One of my guiltiest habits is procrastination. It is the habit of telling yourself “Mamya nalang” or “5 more minutes”. This habit happens to me everyday:

When I wake up – I set the alarm at 5am and I end up getting out of bed at 6:30 am.

Making that business call – (While ringing) “Not my fault kung hindi sagutin”.

Eating at the right time – “I’m still full” or “I’m tamad to open the stove”.

Engaging with friends over dinner – Casually flips through FB.

Why do I do this? I really don’t know. It’s making a story in your mind about giving yourself a break. This blog, is two days off my scheduled post and yes, I have to admit it to make myself realise that its that bad (full transparency folks!)

For the past couple of months I have been exposed to self help books. Before you will never get me to visit the self-help section of a bookstore. Good friends advised my husband and I to re-evaluate our lives. Check if we have the right mindset to be where we want to be.  One of the books I read answered this plainly:

“The number one reason most people don’t get what they want is that they don’t know what they want.”

– T Harver Eker (The Secrets of the Millionaire Mind)

It was a EUREKA moment! It wasn’t clear! Yes I I do have hopes and dreams but is it enough to drive me crazy to work on what I know will make my quality of life better?

Do I want to change? DEFINITELY! The challenge is the big HOW?

My solution… consciously choose your Day 1.

Starting today, I choose not to short change myself:

I choose to wake up everyday at 5:30 and run for 5 km,

I choose to eat properly,

I choose to keep to my appointments,

I choose to be a better mother and wife and most specially,

I choose to be the best version of myself so I may help not only the ones near me but also to those who needs that extra support. A better person that I will like if I was not me. I want a likeable me!

Surviving cancer is an ongoing battle. It makes life worth living as everyday. I only have one life and so do you. Let’s make it a happy one!

Let’s make a deal! Today is your Day 1! I challenge you to break from your habits and join me to be a better You!

Comment if you want to participate in this project! Tell me, what is the one thing or things you will change starting today.

Cheers! Peach Tutu Believes!

 

 

 

The Cebu Pacific – Metrobank Experience

I don’t really know what to do with this company. I tried to be reasonable, called them numerous times and still no resolution.

It started back in October 2015, I was paying for my grocery and a lady approached me asking me if I wanted to apply for a credit card.  Usually I would say no, I already have 2 active cards and I don’t need a third one.  This time however, it was a new card tie up with Cebu Pacific.  Since we travel with that airline sabi ko sayang naman ang points.  I can use that for work related expense.  She gave me a bag after my application and the transaction was done.

I waited for the card to be delivered. I thought I wasn’t approved, then I received a letter from the credit card company in December 2015 “Congratulations on your new credit card!”  I called the hotline and they told me, “Oh, your card is with us, we couldn’t deliver kasi wala kayo sa bahay”. I said that’s impossible my Mom is always at home. They scheduled another delivery in January.

I received this text at 6:40am

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To cut the long story short, the card was never delivered to our address. The card was finally delivered Feb 26th and I got a call that day that it was received.  I did get a separate call the next day Saturday while driving.  She said she was from Metrobank and I told her “please call me when I’m not driving, I received the card”. After that I never received a call from Metrobank.

Around March 4, I was at St. Luke’s Global, I decided to use the new credit card for an ensaymada purchase.  Low and behold the card wouldn’t go through. The next couple of minutes was pure horror. I called the credit card company and I was thrown around 3x to different people who wouldn’t tell me what was wrong with my card, all they could say was “Ma’am naka block”. Ha? bakit na-block? I got through one department called “concerned department” – kasi yan ang tawag nung 3 nakausap ko. So I found out the “concerned department” was the fraud department. Apparently last Feb 24 or Feb 25, there were multiple transactions made by the card via online purchases from android apps. The amount was Php 37,000 ($800). Take note, the card was received Feb 26th.  I asked them what to do and the answer was, “wait for the statement then file for dispute”.  I asked them to block the card permanently as my security is compromised.

I waited, no statement arrived. Called again Monday March 20, apparently they sent me a replacement card even if I asked to cancel the card permanently. I asked nicely, was there a misunderstanding with my request? This was the girl’s response:

“Ma’am, hindi pa po kasi naka-cancel ang card nyo kasi wala po kaming na rereceive na formal letter of dispute, kaya po kami nag padala ng replacement card kasi po automatic po yun sa mga accounts na hindi naman po permanently deactivated”

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  1. Hindi deactivated
  2. Hindi pa nagsimula ang invetigation process
  3. Hindi nila na solve ang problem ko

I gave her my thoughts..yes in Anger style and told them, I am convinced that the company has handled my issue poorly. Sagot sa akin:

“You don’t have to pay the expenses in the card, ma’am”. Hindi yun ang point ko.

Requested to expedite the statement of account which was promised to be sent out latest today. Nothing  parin. So ito nalang ako….

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Isipin nyo nalang my experience is not unique. Imagine how much theft the credit card company experience everyday. I actually feel bad for them, but the process isn’t robust.

Ending..waiting game nalang ba Metrobank?

Images: Inside Out licensed to Disney

2015 Peachtutu Recap!

Yes… after a long break from blogging, I am back! Woohoo! How is everyone? So many things have changed in the past 9-10 months of absence.  Where to start?

Work. I have moved on from my previous work as a home based sustainable investment back-end support manager to a very hectic but exciting front line expansion kickstarter. Sound savvy huh? I kinda like putting big words in my sentences, at least to me I sound cool (pagbigyan). It is true with everything that when you pray you have to be very specific.  I mean, downright specific to the detail of what you want. Like praying for that perfect steak (oh another topic!), medium rare, juicy but brown with a buttery flavor and a hint of garlic.  Back in May of 2015, I prayed to God, sabi ko “Lord, hanggang dito nalang ba ako?  I love working for my boss and our exceptionally amazing team. Pero, hindi ito ang gusto ng puso ko.Pwede po ba na bigyan nyo akong ng trabaho na science related, na hindi ko matatanggihan?” (ayaw ko na i-english kasi baka ma nosebleed ako). I was 34 then and I knew that my value as a potential new hire for a different company, more so a tech company will be close to zero. I still prayed and one day in June I received an fb message from a former boss. It really happened. That’s history. This new move has opened me to new challenges, extreme ones, torturous if I may add, but it also gives me a senses of satisfaction. When your initiatives start to work. When sales starts to pour in. When you get calls and you suddenly become a person who can help those who are in need. Hopefully whatever I am doing is going to result into something. So where did I move to? A genetics company! Yeah!

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Travel. So lucky to make Singapore my Quiapo from last year. I made tons of wonderful experience with old and new friends. Was it for work or vacay? Mostly work, but it was absolutely a fun experience.  I would not have imagined to feel familiar  in a different country. I loved the trains system, the clean roads, the safe environment and THE FOOD. It is an amazing place to live in.  I just wish it wasn’t that expensive.  Our go-to place was Baguio.  We just had to run away from the capital’s harsh pollution and intense heat in exchange for a couple of days of pine fresh air. My family won’t really mind if we just kept going back to the places we always visit, it is our second home. It is also a milestone that we were able to go on a roadtrip to Ilocos. Man the drive was crazy..I mean the drivers were crazy! It was a long land trip but the view from hopping to different towns are forever etched in my mind. From Laoag – Paoay – Pagudpud – Vigan, it was a memory to remember. Note: when in Vigan, its ok to pay a little extra for a nice room, we stayed in a hotel that was creepy..like old Spanish creepy with big cockroaches. What topped my must do list was when we headed to Cebu with my Aunt. It was an impromptu trip. Aside from the lechon, we traversed the southern part of Cebu which is Oslob. I know I will get hate from being part of the whale tourism in the area, but it was my first time to swim that deep … in open waters with gentle giants. I will post separate blogs on our travels. Don’t touch the whales, don’t wear sunscreen.

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Feeling Sereynaaaa!

Family. It is sad to say that we lost our Dad last year on Feb 3rd. It is also the reason why I withdrew from blogging. I kind of fell a part and was in denial of what had happened. My Dad was a diabetic who suffered due to complications from living an unchecked lifestyle. It is true, your body will be defined by how you live life and it was a lifestyle disease that got him.  My Dad was 78 when he passed and when you love someone dearly and you lost them, there will forever be a void in your heart. It doesn’t get fixed, its just a vacuum of sadness tucked somewhere in the chambers. I am not exaggerating this, it is the only way I can describe what I feel after loosing him. I miss him…

my dad

Health. I am happy to report that my scans are all clear! I am going in my 3rd year in remission! But the flu got the best of me and bogged me down for 3 days… These super bugs are really nasty! Drink up on your vitamins! Yes, the peachtutu still runs!!!

Screen Shot 2016-02-17 at 2.02.43 AMAs I celebrate my additional year in life, I have come up with a dream board which was an exercise to realize what you want your life to be. I only want one simple thing…a worry free no thinking of what else kind of happiness. This journey I devout myself to take as many loved ones as I can. I want to live and inspire people that no matter who they are or what they do your limitations are only as real as how you believe them to be. Trust in God, trust in yourself, work hard and no regrets.  Take it from me, a person who was once threatened of life. Let’s make our lives richer with love each day.

Cheers everyone! that’s my 2015 in recap. Let’s get it on Fire Monkey! I love you Mom!

Sharing: The Best Part Of Life Is Realizing Why It’s Better That Things Didn’t Work Out via Elite Daily

Everything dies; it’s the fate we are all arriving at, closer every day. Yet, at the same time, beauty is only as beautiful as it is mortal. Things that never die can never really be appreciated for their beauty, as they don’t beckon to be seen and loved before their end.

Things that never die, never really live. It’s living that is beautiful and as human beings, we know how to live life to the fullest.

We live life the best way anything can – we live by constantly making mistakes, constantly faltering, constantly changing our paths and directions in life, and constantly judging our each and every move. We live to blunder and to learn from our mistakes.

Making mistakes is a necessary part of life as they not only teach us, but they bring us a step closer to finding ourselves. Being human can make appreciating our lives difficult – many really do have difficult lives.

I’d even say that we all have a difficult life, as difficulty is a matter of perspective and our perspectives are always yearning for more beauty, more success, more prosperity.

The thing to keep in mind is that beauty, success and prosperity are only as good as their counterparts: the lack thereof. It’s the void that we feel moving along our path in life that allows us to truly appreciate what our lives become.

It’s having nothing that will allow you to appreciate everything. It’s failing miserably over and over again that will allow you to succeed. It’s struggling and losing that will allow you to prosper and find happiness.

Everything in your life must have happened in order for you to exist – every single, little thing. You would not be the exact same person if any of your past experiences were different. Even the littlest, most unpleasant things have a way of shaping us into the individuals we were always meant to be.

The greatest moments of clarity in your life will come when you look back at your journey and conclude that it was all necessary and that it’s all beautiful.

That moment you realize that your difficult youth was necessarily difficult.

It’s when we are youngest that we learn most. Life teaches us lessons with rapid regularity. The older we get, the less frequent these lessons become. From the day you are born, all the way through your 20s is when you will decide the person you will be for the rest of your life.

The things you’ve experienced, the things you’ve tried and seen have established the core person you are right now. One day you will likely look back at it all – all the fun and all the hardship – only to accept that it all must have happened, that it was all completely necessary.


That moment you realize if you hadn’t failed miserably, you would have never learned your lesson.

People fail all the time – often failing multiple times at the very same things. Failing is one of the greatest things in the world, as it reminds us how imperfect we are. It reminds us how much we need to learn in order to become the people we wish to be.

Some of your largest failures in life will become your greatest assets. Some day you will realize that if you had never failed, then you would have never succeeded.


That moment you realize that a broken heart has changed your life forever.

A broken heart – whether your own or otherwise – will change you forever. It will change the fabric of your being and will turn you into an entirely different person.

A broken heart is one of the most emotionally debilitating experiences in the world, only falling second to breaking the heart of the person you love.

Having your heart broken stays with you until someone else mends it, but breaking the heart of the person you love stays with you for the rest of your life. It can be a brutal misery, but believe me when I tell you that it’s a necessary one.


That moment you realize your “dream job” was never really your dream job.

It takes some people longer than others to arrive at their purpose in life – it’s not anyone’s fault, as finding our purpose in life is found just as much outside of us as it is inside of us.

But experiencing that moment of realization, of realizing that what you once thought was your purpose in life is not at all your true purpose in life, is one of the most beautiful feelings in the world.

Often we fail at either reaching or succeeding in our dream jobs because there is something more, something greater, waiting for us.


That moment you realize your best friends aren’t your friends at all.

Throughout life, we go through more friends than we go through pairs of jeans. Most of the people we once thought would be there to support us will one day abandon ship and leave us to drown.

Realizing that someone who you thought was your good friend is actually no friend at all is one of the most important lessons of your life. You’ll realize that it’s better not to have any friends at all than to have impostors.

And those friends who are your true friends you’ll learn to appreciate even more.


That moment you realize that being lost for so long was the only way to find the person you are meant to be.

If you are never lost, then you can never be found. If you pretend to have it all together for the sake of holding face then you will fail at life entirely.

You have to accept that you are lost and then find your way through the fog.

One day, assuming you never stop searching, you will find the person you were meant to be and you will accept the necessity of your lengthy search.


That moment you realize the love of your life was still waiting for you.

Human beings compare everything to the things they already know. Often we will find that something we thought was so incredible was actually quite common and un-special.

The person you thought was the love of your life may have only seemed so great because you haven’t met the real love of your life.

The day you meet the person you should spend the rest of your life with is the day you feel more alive than ever before – and probably more alive than you will ever feel again.


That moment you realize your world just fell apart entirely, and you’re still standing.

Life is incredibly complex – I’m not even talking about life as a whole, but each of our personal lives. There are so many aspects and so many details that make up who we are as individuals that it can be nearly impossible to hold everything together.

Sometimes holding it all together isn’t possible. Sometimes things are meant to fall apart and break. Sometimes the life you are leading is so far from the life you are meant to be living that losing everything is the only way you can make it out on top.

The moment you realize that not even loss itself can stop you, that sadness, despair, anger and fear cannot hold you back, is the moment you become perfect. Perfectly flawed, but perfect nonetheless.

Thanks Chuchay for sharing this!

Original article can be found at: Elite Daily

Photo Courtesy: Tumblr

Ang 32k, Bow!

It was 2012 when we joined our first 5km. I was in awe at the people who lined up at 4:30 am to run a 16km distance. My husband and I reacted with “wow ang tindi nila” expressions.  Imagine, gigising ka ng maaga para tumakbo?  Fast forward to 2015, we’ve become run junkies.  Not hard core but we do it for fun. A year of half marathons made us feel we were ready to level-up our game. Last March we finished the RU1-21km decently.  When RU2 opened its registration sabi ko kay OJ  “ano lakasan ng loob nalang? ” and our deal was sealed.

Part of our dream as running enthusiast was to make a marathon a reality. We took on the guidance of Coach Titus Salazar and would trek to Ultra MWF every week, rain or shine.  My husband was more religious, I wasn’t.  Work got in the way, sometimes, I wouldn’t feel well.  OJ told me, “paano ka na sa 32k, hindi ka nagprapractice?”.  I knew he was right, I wanted this but dreaded it the same time.  Mind and heart told me I can do it, but my legs which suffered a bad case of shin splint since Feb told me otherwise (buy shoes that works for you…learned it the hard way). Still no excuses….

Having a coach has improved us in so many ways.  I used to run my 21k in 3 hours but now I can run it in 2hrs and 40 min.  I will never look at stairs the same way again and you’ll get your speed with drills.  Feeling ko, kung wala kaming guidance from Coach, sa kangkungan na kami dadamputin.

Two weeks prior to race day, I was ill and I mean ill.  Having a bad case of diarrhea, that went on and off got me thinking. Itutuloy ko ba sya? Go lang? Kung di ko matapos, at least hindi sayang ang reg fee.  When the day before race came I was drowning myself with Pocari and water, LBM was at its peak 14x a day!!!  Nilalakasan ko lang talaga utak ko, replenish what is lost ang drama ko.  We slept early and woke up at 12:30 am, Sunday.  Our assembly time is at 2am and parking was already long.  I told my hubby to park sa MOA building carpark kasi I needed to go to the CR (for the 4th time since I woke up).  Aah… kailangan ko ng tubig! I was praying to God, “Lord, please wag po masyadong mainit, paulanin nyo na po wag lang po maaraw, at kung pwede lang po after the race na po ako mag CR ulit”.  Lining up made me feel numb, I did my usual warm up, stretch, run a bit but I know something is kulang.

We were part of wave 2.  At first ok lang, but feeling bloated kasi I took loperamide the night before was a bad idea.  The first 2 km went by smoothly, then I felt the first urge.  Natagtag! Dasal na ako ng dasal, Lord, kailangan iraos ko to, 12 mins palang ako tumatakbo. Come km 5, alam ko hindi ko na kaya, my body was rejecting pocari (nasusuka ako sa bawat sip), I knew water was the only safe way to rehydrate.

Somehow feeling ko pinapadalan ako ni Lord ng tulong at binibigyan ako ng encouragement.  People would say hi, talk and sometimes run beside me. They would say, “nakita kita sa RU1 ang bilis mo di kita mahabol sa 21k” (naks, di ko alam kung bola yun kasi di naman ako ganung ka bilis pero nakaka flatter naman). Some would make kwento saan saan na sila tumakbo or would high five just to say go go go! These people came in at the moment I was feeling like I want to run to the ambulance and give up.

I saw OJ and he was 2 kms ahead of me. Bilis nya! He was running my ideal time. Nilampasan ko ang City of Dreams, Buendia hanggang Paseo at nung pag-ikot ko sa u-turn last 5km…alam ko kaya ko syang tapusin in 30 mins.  Sadly, hindi ko nagawa dahil hinang hina na ako. Di ko na alam what to feel.  My legs were starting to cramp, nanlalamig at ang tindi ng sakit ng tyan ko.  Visions of me crossing the finish line collapsing wasn’t far from happening.  Still, I pushed myself. tapusin mo ito ng mabilis kung hindi aabutan ka ng sweeper bus!

It was the last 2 km and I was at the intersection of Buendia and Macapagal, I had to sit down, no medic in sight.  Nandidilim na paningin ko.  Then one guy told me, “Ate tayo ka na dyan 2km nalang”.  God, thank you for sending me angels!

That last stretch was where my interval training kicked in.  Sprint for 200 meters and walk the next 100.  I did that until I got to the final 200 meters where I just ran as fast as I can.  I was shaking..I don’t know where to look anymore.  The girl removed my tag, and gave me my medal.  I heard OJ call my name and that was the time I totally lost it and broke down.  All I can say is “ang sakit sakit ng tyan ko”.  We went straight to the carpark after receiving my finishers kit.

When we got home, I couldn’t eat, and I collapsed on the bed after taking a shower. I was staring at the medals weakly, and told myself, I did it.  Blackout.

It wasn’t the best, but who cares, it was my own. I made it happen. I raced it fair and square despite the many challenges.  I didn’t give up. Will I do it again? Of course, but not on a bad tummy! Congratulations to all finishers! You are your own champion! God speed!

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Shin Splint Ouch!

I haven’t been running the past few months as much as I want to.  Early this year I started serious run training with Coach Titus every MWF at Ultra.  My goal this year is to conquer my first marathon.  I want to be a legit runner, but like many goals it comes with challenges. I ran  two 21k back to back in February and it aggravated an injury…the horrible shin splint.  So what’s it all about?

image c/o pivotalpodiatry.com.au
image c/o pivotalpodiatry.com.au

By definition from medical definitions : Shin splints, are medically known as medial tibial stress syndrome (MTSS), refers to pain in the shins – the front lower legs. It is an inflammatory condition of the front part of the tibia. The pain is brought on by strenuous activity.

In short ang sakit ng legs ko, I can’t run.  Naka ilang hilot na si coach, wala parin. But even with this injury I still train, with a decreased load.  Therapy has no effect, I’m taking cataflam 140mg every time I run, but it’s still there.  Sigh….

Hard headed as I am, I love running and this injury doesn’t keep me away from making PRs  in the past three 21k runs.  My best time so far 2 hr 43 min! yeah!!! Whadda improvement!

There’s only this… I gotta ice-ice baby before I return to intensive training for the RU2 – for my first evaar 32k! Wagi!!!

IMG_3848Ciao!! xoxo Peachtutu!

The Korean Adventure Day 2: Insa-dong, N Seoul Tower & Dongdaemon

Our tour ended at Insa-dong the popular haven of fashion, tea and antique shops in Korea.  This is the entrance arc to the fashion street.

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We didn’t sign up for the lunch tour and was very hungry.  I wanted to eat somewhere authentic, like a pancake or bibimbap place, but low and behold we ended up at KFC.  Kuya Oscar order rice but there wasn’t any in KFC Korea only biscuits. Carbo diet ba to!? I ordered the zinger burger and was kinda disappointed. It lacked the crunch and the spice that I was used to in KFC Philippines.

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There were lots of people in the streets, checking out bargain and cosmetic shops.  Insa-dong has multiple alleyways that leads to back streets filled with hole in the wall restaurants.  Too bad we found this after we ate at KFC. Lupit ni Ate sa background naka mini skirt.

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Shumi loving the street run. Feeling mowdel!

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There wasn’t really much to do, we’re not heavy shoppers, I mean I’m from Manila, I know a bargain when I see one. Not ready to spend cash on the first day…. (but on the first night…maybe! make-up!).  It was already 4pm and we wanted to catch the sunset at Namsan Tower. We wanted to take the train, but realize its better to take the cab, we might get lost.

Shumi enjoying her first cab ride in Korea. pouty pouty!

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We arrived! Namsan Tower/ N Seoul Tower! You have to ride a cable car to get to the top.  The cable car is on the third floor of the complex and the line was long extending to the stairs of the second floor. For a round trip it will cost you 6,000 won (250 php) for adults and 5,000 won (205 php) won for kids. IMG_3159You can opt to hike up the hill, but …. are you really sure?

N Seoul Tower is a hot tourist spot in Korea. Like the different sky towers, they have a revolving observatory and restaurant at the top.  We didn’t go up anymore, it will cost you an additional 9,000 won (370 php) per person just to view and separate fees for the restaurant and museum.  The view is already spectacular from the base.

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Seoul…oh Seoul…

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Locks of love!

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The steps where they shot episodes of Running Man!!! Breds baby!

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I sat down in the gazebo pictured above and took in the day and enjoyed the sunset. IMG_3188

N Seoul tower at night, me and Kuya Oscar, hong lamig na!!!

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What’s so funny was we had no idea it was a walk from our guest house.  Duh Namsan Guest house nga! We saved on cab/train fare and bought dinner at the convenience shop. Tipid mode talga kami!

The adults went out to explore the city at night.  We left the kids watching movies in their room and headed off to Dongdaemon Shopping complex…ito na!

We took the train from Myeong-dong station to Dongdaemon. It was close, about 3 or 4 stations away.  You wont miss it.  It would have been awesome to visit this place during day time.

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The popular creek that I often see on Dramas. Left and right buildings are all shopping malls.

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The MLFAS Exhibition/ spaceship like museum served as the set of the popular My Love from Another Star Drama. I wanted to go in but it was already closed.

IMG_3198Spent 4 hours in this district combing the streets for good finds, but ending in a shopping mall hoarding make-up.  Wasn’t able to take pictures, it was extremely cold and both hands were occupied. Ganun ako ka busy mamili. Swipe lang ng swipe!

Note: It is cheaper to buy in the malls than the streets.  If you would like to buy affordable  souvenirs go to Arirang Shop at Doota Mall, Dongdaemon.  I bought my make-up loot at Lotte Fitin, they have a whole floor of make-up shops.  It wasn’t as crowded as the ones in Myeong-dong and I guess that’s the reason why I got a lot of freebies! Yey!

Up next… Day 3 at  Nami Island and Petit France.

The Korean Adventure Day 2: DMZ

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When traveling, Google is your best friend.  Search multiple travel websites and compare prices.  There are tours that are expensive in one agency but cheap in another. Pick out tours that make sense for you and your companions. If you have kids, safety is the most important element in your choice.

On our second day, we chose to visit the infamous Korean DMZ (Demilitarized Zone). This is the hostile borderline between North and South Korea.  I find it interesting but sad at the same time.

We woke up early. Even with little sleep, we were all excited to check-out what the day had to offer. Namsan Guest house offers free unlimited noodles (instant), bread, jams and coffee the whole day.  This saved as a ton of food money, not bad!  We were fetched by a black van at 7 am via  Cosmojin Tours. The van brought us to join a bigger group, we signed up for the DMZ morning half morning experience.

It took us 30-40 minutes to get to our first spot, Imjingak Park. The guide informed us that this park is commemorative of the Korean war. Statues and small monuments reminds every visitor of the sacrifice that all Koreans had to bear, that one day there will then be again peace and unification.

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Can’t believe we were roaming around in a 2 deg weather!   There were patches of snow and ice on the ground and we were very careful not to slip. Hawakan ang mga bata!

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There are several local shops that sells food and other retail products. OJ bought some fish and chicken skewers. Its yumeeh!

IMG_3100We also bought new rainbox gloves and poki sticks for the little Ms. Piggy.

IMG_3101We only had 20 minutes to explore and if we were late, a mandatory dance infront of the whole group will be the punishment. Guess what, Kuya Oscar is the first man to Gangnam.

From Imjingak Park we headed to the actual DMZ area.  All visitors are not allowed to take pictures of the landscape and people beyond this point. Managed to take this before entering the zone. A security check is needed, a young military officer came up to the bus and inspected all our passports.  In Korea, all young men are required 2 years of military service even the celebrities.  The checker might be a KPop Idol and we wouldn’t know it.

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Our bus parked at the DMZ theater and exhibition hall. The parking area and the inside of the museum are the only areas people were allowed to take photos.

IMG_3116The DMZ is 250 km long, cutting the whole peninsula in half and 4 km wide.  Heavily guarded by the north and south, it is a place where nature is left to thrive on its own.  It must be the best wild life protected zone in the world.

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“Soldiers in action”

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This is the statue of the third tunnel.  We went descended 73 meters below the ground to see a tunnel that was dug by North Korea to use against the South. Sorry no pictures of the tunnel, I don’t want to go to jail. It was great exercise! Going back up was the challenge.

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DMZ Jump Shot, don’t huli me please!

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Our pack moved to Dora Observatory.  You can rent a telescope for 500 won to view the expanse of North Korea in all its glory. I was ale to see the the North Korean flag and the entrance gate to Kaesong Industrial Region.

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Another interesting stop is the Dorasan Train Station. This place is so much better than the Philippine’s airport.  It is one of the best well maintained transport facilities I have ever seen.

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I love the design and feel of it. This is the waiting area, high ceiling and well lighted.

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Dorasan Station is the only functional train station that connects South Korea to North Korea.  For now, it functions to service employees that works in the DMZ area connected via Seoul station.  Trips are limited, I am not sure if you can commute using this to visit DMZ.

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There were other spots that the guide pointed to us that as part of North Korea.  The guide said: “how would you differentiate between the land of North and South Korea? it is with their mountains. South Korea with its technology use different ways to power the nation.  North Korea uses trees, almost all mountains trees are chopped for firewood” Sad.

It was almost midday and the tour guide took us to visit an organic farm in the DMZ and an Amethyst shop in Seoul.  I wasn’t able to go down and see the fancy jewels, my little Boomie was knocked-out.  It was sunny and wonderful, but three layers of clothing is necessary.

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All in all, tour package cost us 38,000 won or 1,600 php per head.

Thank you Cosmojin for a wonderful and organized trip!

Up next second part of the day Insa-dong + Namsan Tower.