Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Promil: i-Shine Talent Camp


Vote for the last two finalists of the Promil Pre-School i-Shine Talent Camp

Who will complete this year’s Promil Pre-School’s i-Shine Talent Camp Top 12? The top 10 has already been selected and you have the power to decide who will become the last two finalists through your votes!

Twenty more talented hopefuls await your vote at Watch their impressive talent videos and support your favorite! Only 1 vote per video per day is allowed. Voting period is from May 28 to June 3.

In partnership with ABS-CBN, the Promil Pre-School i-Shine Talent Camp is a TV reality show that aims to encourage parents to develop and support their child’s talent. Among the prizes that await the winner is a talent contract from Star Magic and Promil Pre-School, plus Php 500,000 in cash.

So vote for your favorite now and give him the chance to shine on-stage at the Promil Pre-School i-Shine Talent Camp. Who knows, he could be the country’s next big talent!

Promil Pre-School is a nutritious powdered milk drink for children 4-7 years old which contains Nutrissentials – a unique combination of essential nutrients that help optimize a child’s full potential. 

For more details on Promil Pre-School i-Shine Talent Camp, visit, contact the Wyeth Careline at 81-WYETH (99384) or the provincial toll-free number 1-800-10-884-2222. You may also visit Promil Pre-School’s Facebook Fan Page at 

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Jockey Sports Microfiber Active: N.F.B.P. No Fabric-Burn Promise

I’ve been a runner for almost three years now and, every so often, some of my worst running experiences was where I incur “fabric burn" from the singlet, shorts or even from the underwear I used, most especially when I do long runs -- 16k and up. In my previous blog post, I reviewed the running shorts apparel from DIADORA which I found to be very comfortable and also addressed my concern on fabric burn between the thighs. However, the good quality of the fabric of the running apparel may solve one problem, but a lot of underwear available today may not be as good and may still ruin a good running day.

Last week I was invited to attend the media launch of the latest series of undergarments from Jockey. It was held at ARIA Cucina Italiana, the newest Italian Resto located at the heart of BGC. Jockey presented a showcase of undergarment lines that were mostly for women but I also got a good look at the Jockey Sports Microfiber line for men.

Jockey Sports Microfiber is designed for people who live an active lifestyle. Made from 92% Nylon and 8% Elastane (or more commonly known as Spandex), the Jockey Microfiber line is engineered to offer  maximum comfort no matter how you move even for a long period time, such as running. As a common practice, many runners I know skip wearing underwear during races simply because of the constant friction it gives to skin during long distance runs so they wear tight compression leggings instead. The downside is, in some cases, compression running apparel limits the movements of a runner.

I guess this Jockey Sports Microfiber line is the answer to the long-time irritation problem in running. Jockey Sports Microfiber line comes in seam-free design types which are hardly visible at the back, most especially if one wears it with compression running apparel. Variants come in briefs style, boxer and trunks versions.

At the launch, Jockey Philippines paraded sample apparels to be passed around and allowed us to feel the fabric which are relatively cooler. The texture was smoother compared to other nylon fabric apparel and the items are also lightweight. To give a benchmark price of how much these undergarments cost, the trunk type costs P550 each. It's a bit pricey for underwear, but if Jockey’s cutting edge technology will give extra comfort to me as a runner, then that is one price tag worth shelling out. 

Next week, I’m scheduled to run another half marathon at the Merrell Adventure Run. So, before I hit the trails of Timberland Heights, I plan to pay a visit to the nearest Jockey shop and get myself a pair so I can see it in action for myself.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Merrell Adventure Run 2012: It‘s not just trail running…It’s an adventure!

My very first trail running race was last year’s Merrell Adventure Run 2011, where I also made my first blog post on trail running from that experience. After several fun runs on the road, I took it as a personal challenge on how I would do on the trails. It was also the debut run for my newly bought Merrell Barefoot Trail Glove, which helped my transition to do barefoot running eventually. Indeed, after the MAR 2011, I was a transformed runner.

I few months back, Thumbie Remigio, a longtime friend and also the race director for this year’s Merrell Adventure Run 2012 shared to me several snap shots of the Timberland trails where MAR 2012 is going to be held and it looks so extreme and wicked. I got so excited so I made several emails to friends and Merrell Philippines and I conveyed my interest (more like desire) to run in MAR. After a week, lo and behold, not only did I get a complimentary race kit but also got an invitation to attend a test run and get the first-hand feel of the newly trail-blazed race course Thumbie made.

 group shot before the test run...

With several media friends in the running circuit and friends from Merrell Philippines, we went to the trails of Timberland Heights in San Mateo, Rizal. At the trail head, all of us were briefed on the trail condition and we were divided into two groups. One group was tasked to field test the 5k course and the other group, where I joined in was for the 10k and 21k course. After a quick stretching and gearing up, it’s lock-n-load time!

 pacing with Thumbie Remigio

At a slow start, we all paced with Thumbie and enjoyed the scene around us which was quite familiar from last year’s MAR. The trails in the first two kilometers was wide and rough so I made sure to take some mental notes on the condition of the course so I can give a good intel for my barefoot running friends who plan to run at MAR 2012 on barefoot. Earlier that day, it came to my mind to do barefoot as well, since I already experienced half-marathon trails barefooted before. It’s a good thing I decided to bring my ailing Merrell Trail glove along. But even with it, I can still feel the sharp rocks of the trails.

This has withstood more than 1,000 kilometers of running...

 a rough and rocky terrain...

The next stretch was an incline that brought us to higher ground where we can see a panoramic view of the course up a head. Next was a gradual descent that led us to one of the highlights of the course: the river-traverse. This is the point where the course became exciting. After traversing along a hundred yard stretch of the river, we came to the portion where there is a falls and all are required to jump to the waters below. The height was around 15 feet and the depth of the water was around eight feet.

 a panoramic view of the trails...

 a refreshing plunge awaits 10k and 21k runners...

After that refreshing plunge, all of us re-grouped at the river bed where Thumbie oriented us to the next portion of the trails. First, it was a short steep climb that eventually led us to an open field of grass lands. These portions are narrow, rolling and long but very refreshing while running at a constant pace and direction with much lesser turns and sudden drops. This area was also part of last year’s race which led us to a long climb where we ended on a wider trail again.

 after the falls, a steep climb...

an open grass land...

At this point, exhaustion was starting to kick in but was still very manageable. The trails are much wider with a distance of less than a kilometer long where it leads us to a narrow path with deep “rats” or crevasse caused by some off-road moto-cross bikers who also visit the trails. Soon after, we descended on that portion, an area where another exciting challenge awaits the runners, and these are the mud-pits. All categories are required to get down and dirty crawling in mud.

 dug by the tires of moto-cross bikers...

When we arrived at the pits, it was still under-construction, so at least that’s one part of the course we didn’t have to test, but I’m sure it will be grueling challenge to all runners on the race day. After passing the mud-pits we ran another 1.5k to get to the finish line. 

 Series of mud-pits...

a variety of terrain...

We all converged with the rest of the field testers and we happily exchanged thoughts about the course. For some who planned to do a 21k distance before the test run, we were having second thoughts of changing it to 10k instead. But as for me, I think I will stick to my original plan to run 21k. Because if this race is an adventure, then why end it too soon?

Note: Photos courtesy of Julito "Jojo" Pauly

Friday, May 25, 2012

The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf Debuts Tom Epperson’s Latest Works


Looking for that perfect inspiration to help you in 
your photographic pursuits? 

From May 30 to June 5, The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf gives photography and art aficionados a real treat as it lets everyone marvel at Tom Epperson’s latest works in a special art show that will be held in Greenbelt 5. Entitled “Brewfinder: Enthusiasm Over Coffee at the CBTL,” the weeklong exhibition highlights the artist’s photographic prowess with a set that revolves around the concept of finding beauty in just about everything. 

“This event is part of The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf’s commitment to enrich passions, especially passions that are related with the arts,” shares Walden Chu, President of The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf. “Needless to say, The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf has always supported causes we believe can help improve society, and art does that. Art teaches us that perseverance and patience, and not just skills, are important when it comes to creating beautiful things. And this is something that The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf and its employees live by.”

The six-piece set draws inspiration from Tom’s interest in dealing with erratic objects. “Lately, I have been working with mediums that are basically uncontrollable—a lot is left up to serendipity,” Tom said. “I like the idea of surprise, it reminds me of going into the darkroom in the days of analog and watching a print develop for the first time, it was magic. This is the same feeling I get when working with smoke.” 

“Brewfinder: Photography Enthusiasm Over Coffee at the CBTL” is the first of The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf’s Taste Series, a seven-part pocket event series that highlights the brand’s single-serve system—the CBTL. Borne out of a partnership with the Italian design and espresso-making expertise of Caffitaly, CBTL raises the bar for coffee and tea aficionados by bringing the distinct Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf cafĂ© experience into your home. 

 The CBTL. One touch. One perfect cup. GeiserMaclang Marketing Communications Inc. V: +632.856.GMCI (4624) | F: +632.4033540 M: +63918.894.GMCI (4624) | E:

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Aria Pizza: Pizzas are made with tender love and care

In the Philippines, pizzas are just some of the most popular dishes that many Filipinos enjoy eating. At home, if we have pizza along with our regular dishes on a weekend, my kids would easily snub other delicacies and choose to eat pizza instead. On occasions when we’d have the chance to eat outside, a pizza hub is always the resto of choice, even if it would take a longer time ordering the food item compared to fast food.

A couple of days ago, I was fortunate to be invited to a fairly new, authentic Italian restaurant located in the heart of BGC which it is starting to gain popularity when it comes to pizza. Aria Cucina Italiana, a familiar name for those who already visited their branch in Boracay, is likewise beginning to be the talk of the town among foodies and resto enthusiasts around the metro.

 One of Aria's best-sellers...

The media event was not the typical food tasting activity where we simply get to eat Aria’s bestseller pizzas. Rather, we actually had the rare opportunity to make the pizza ourselves! The Make Your Own Pizza Event was graced and hosted by Aria’s owners, husband and wife Mr. Juan Elizalde and Ms. Bianca Araneta-Elizalde.

 Aria owners, Mr. Juan Elizalde and Bianca Araneta-Elizalde

One of Aria's VIP guests and friend, Ms. Corie Quirino

There were about 25 food bloggers and media guests who took part in the pizza making session. Chef Marino, the resident chef of Aria, is actually from Chiavari, Italy where the famous pizza ingredient, pesto, was born. He shares that the secret ingredient to a good tasting pizza is “CARE”. “You have to care when you choose the right ingredient, care as you make the dough and care when you make your pizza”. From his statement, I suddenly realized why pizzas take a longer time to order. The cook gives extra care in making each one of them.

 Chef Marino of Chiavari, Italy

Aria's kitchen staff under the close supervision of Chef Marino

 In batches of eight, we were set on a Laboratorio, as Chef Marino would call it, where all the ingredients and the dough are placed for us to play with. Without any instructions, we dug in to some of the most delicious pizza ingredients I have tasted and placed it on the dough as creative as I can without any thought that I might put in too much of everything. As it turned out, my pizza became overloaded with too much sauce and made it too soggy. In short, it was rejected and it can’t be cooked. Too frustrated and hungry, I just asked slices of pizzas from those whose creations turned out ok.

 Me, getting another take of my famous Chicken Hawaiian Cheese Overload

After another group had their turn making their pizza, Chef Marino took pity on me and told me to try again and gave me another dough. Fresh from my previous mistake, I made sure to carefully place the ingredients in moderate quantity and not to abuse the dough with tomato sauce anymore. To be doubly sure, I spread additional flour on the wooden plank to absorb any moisture from the sauce so it would easily slide from the paddle to the custom built brick-oven.

Jeman's Shrimp and Mushroom galore

Almost didn't make it to the brick-oven, but it did...

After a few minutes, it was done. My first Aria pizza was out fresh from the oven and I was so proud I finally made it right the second time. I was too full from the slices I ate earlier, so I just took a slice and wrapped the rest and took it home for my boys who are all happen to be pizza lovers … just like their dad. 

 Ruth and another blogger friend with their finish products

ARIA Cucina Italiana Manila branch is located at Seventh Avenue, Bonifacio High streets, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig. For inquiries you visit their website: Tel. 6230119; 6214111

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Immuvit Metafit 30-day Challenge (Week 4)

I’m now down to my last week of the Immuvit-Metafit 30 day Challenge. In the last two routines, the difficulty of the exercises was a prompt challenge to me, on how long can my goals is achieved through this four minute quick but painstaking work-out. As I gained strength and agility, my body began to have grown accustomed to an intense early morning work-out, that made the routine a little less challenging already. That is why, there was a day that I did another four minute cycle of the routine in the evening before I went to bed, and the effect was so dramatic and was a little close to being risky. My blood sugar went very low, where I almost gone to hypoglycemia. It‘s a good thing that I’m aware of the feeling already due to my last experience of hypoglycemia years ago. I quickly remedied it with a half plate of Leche flan in the fridge and I was alright. So I guess this work out really works for people with diabetes and wish to control blood sugar level.

For the past week, my routine was a combination of the three Immuvit – Metafit exercises I made. As per my weekly monitoring, I maintained a weight of 139 pounds and a grit measurement of my mid-section of 30 inches, which is still one inch behind my target measurement of 29 inches.

 The below are video-clip demonstrations I made for each week Immuvit-Metafit routine exercises. For those who already following this series, you may want to see how I actually execute them through these videos. 

For week 1, the set consists of JUMPING JACKS (10 Reps), SQUATS (10 Reps), PUSH-UPS (10 Reps) and LUNGES (10 Reps for each leg)… 

For Week 2, the set consists of ALTERNATING LEG KICK (10 Reps per leg), JUMP SQUATS (10 Reps) and ALTERNATING LUNGES (10 reps for each leg)

For week 3, the set consists of MOUNTAIN CLIMBERS (10 Reps for each leg), HALF BURPEES (10 Reps) and SKI JUMPS (10 reps for each leg)

 The combination of these exercises has strengthened my core which I noticed when I do long distance running. In the next coming weeks, I’m scheduled to run two half marathons, so I’m hoping to get a better record time for this. For those who are following this blog series, I’m encouraging you to try this system in your home and see the results for yourself.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

1st AmCham Run for Scholars

AmCham Foundation, the Corporate Social Responsibility, CSR institution of American Chamber of Commerce in the Philippines will hold an advocacy fun run dubbed as AmCham Run for Scholars and it wlil be held on May 27, 2012 at the popular running circuit of Bonifacio Global City, Taguig.

The run is a fundraising event of the foundation where in the funds that will incur will support their programs such as Scholarship for the marginalized youth of Metro Manila in elementary, high school and college or vocational education. For the past 25 years, the foundation has assisted more than 1,600 Filipino youth.

 A few weeks ago, Chris Sports, a major sponsor of the event hosted a media launch that was attended by friends from the online media and supporters of the foundation. The hosting was spearheaded by Ms. Arleen Lindo, Marketing Manager of Chris Sports and it was held at the newest fitness hub in the heart of BGC, the Fitness and Athletics, a store where you can find the newest running and fitness gear.

The evening was graced by the presence of Ms. Chit Ventura, Director of the AmCham Foundation where she gave a short talk and inspired everyone about how the foundation has been helping the poor Filipino youth achieved their dreams through education.

The program was preceded by question and answer portion where media had the opportunity to throw questions to the resource speakers and soon after guests were treated by a delightful dinner courtesy of Via Mare.

AmCham Run for Scholars is now open for registration in all Chris Sports branches and Fitness and Athletics Co. Race distances are 3k, 5k, 10k with registration fees of P500, P550 and P600 respectively. Top 100 finishers will get finishers medals, loot bags and at the program, AmCham will raffle off enticing prizes such as Suunto Watches, 5 star room accommodation and a round trip ticket to Hawaii courtesy of Hawaiian Airlines. 

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

K-Swiss ITU Subic Bay International Triathlon presented by Century Tuna: Swim, Bike Run under the Subic Sun (Part 2)

At 6:00am, May 5, 2012, people were starting to crowd up in the Dungaree area where the swim leg would start. I began to notice delegations from China, Malaysia, Australia and Philippines were getting ready to set on the beach area. Other contenders maximized their time to dip in the open waters for some warm-up laps, just to get accustomed and acclimatized to the cold water temperature.

 Tri-athletes of Malaysia...

Philippine Team...

Team China-Macao

Male-Elite group getting ready for the first leg...


The first batches of swimmers that were set off are the ages 13-15 years old category, the Mini-sprint Triathlon event where our young but promising triathletes namely, Megali Echauz, Batang Pinoy 2011 Champion, Jessica Salazar from Laguna, V. Deldeo of Olongapo City, Sixto Lalanto of CDO, Jumuel Patilan of CDO and Justin Chiongbian of Cebu, compete with some of Asia’s equally competitive teens coming from Malaysia, Thailand and China. The record time of these young athletes gained on the three legs hope to qualify them in the 2014 Youth Olympics Games.

Mini-Sprint 13-15 

Team Trimac...

Top three swimmers for age 13-15 Mini-Sprint (male) :
1. Sixto Louie Lalanto (Phil)
2. Jimuel Patilian (Phil)
3. Tareef Azfar (Malaysia)

Top three swimmers for age 13-15 Mini-sprint (Female):
 1. Zoe Bowden (Malaysia)
 2. Megali Echauz (Phil)
 3. Vicky Deldio (Phil)

The day was a bit warmer than expected, so the race officials decided to merge the Male-Elite U23 category to the elite batch of swimmers and all of them will plunge the open waters together in order to grab the cooler weather in the morning. Leading the Philippine team was Nikko Huelgas, all were hoping for him to get a place in the winner’s podium later in the afternoon.

 Male mini-sprint...

Under the category of Male-Elite U23, swim rankings are as follows:
1. Nikko Huelgas (Phil)
2. Shimri Lim (Malaysia)
3. John Chicano (Phil)

With the male-elite category where most of the international delegations competed, top swimmers were dominated by Australia, MAR, Ireland and China respectively. Our very own Jonard Saim fell behind in the three events and landed on the 14th place in the end.

 Female mini-sprint...

Ranking in the swim event for the Male-elite:
1. Barrie Shane (Aus)
2. Kane Simpson (Aus)
3. Essadik Mhedi (MAR)

In the female Elite category, our very own Kim Mangrobang have fallen significantly behind her opponents consistently from the beginning. It showed that two months training in Australia weren't enough to go head to head with some of her international contenders.

 Male mini-sprint...

Nikko Huelgas emerging from the water...

Top three swimmers for the female-elite
1. Eri Kawashima (JPN)
2. Grace Musgrove (Aus)
3. Wang YI (China)


In less than 20 minutes, tri-athletes like Shane Barrie of Australia, Kane Simpson also form Australia and Essadik Mhedi of MAR emerged from the water and dashed to the next transition area for the bike leg. The bike leg is a grueling 40 kilometer distance and all will be exposed under 32 degrees centigrade under the  hot Subic sun.

 Transition one. swim to bike...

Shane Barrie of Australia. First male-elite to mount for the bike leg...

Soon after, Philippines’ Nikko Huelgas finally finished his swim and proceeded immediately for the bike leg. After a while, his team mate John Chicano soon followed to cover the 40 kilometer bike race. By that time, other international contenders were miles away, but the Nikko and his team have showed undaunted spirit to chase them.

 Female mini-sprint on the bike leg...

Tam of China-Hong-kong getting ready to mount...

Top three bikers ages 13-15 mini-sprint (male):
1. Sixto Louie Lalanto (Phil)
2. Jimuel Patilian (Phil)
3. Tareef Azfar (Malaysia)

Top three bikers 13-15 mini-sprint (Female)
1. Zoe Bowden (Malaysia)
2. Vicky Deldio (Phil)
3. Megali Echauz (Phil)

Top three bikers male-elite U23:
1. Nikko Huelgas (Phil)
2. John Chicano (Phil)
3. Shimri Lim (Malaysia)

Female Elite...

Top three bikers male-elite
1. Bai Faquan (China)
2. Benjamin Shaw (Ireland)
3. Barrie Shane (Aus)

Top three bikers female-elite
1. Eri Kawashima (JPN)
2. Grace Musgrove (Aus)
3. Wang YI (China)


After several swim finishers, I decided to leave the area and go to the next transition for the run leg. Fortunately, Edsel a Photo blogger I met in Manila allowed me to hitch a ride to go to the transition from bike to run.

 Transition two. bike to run. Leading the pack is Tam of Hong-kong...

Essadik of MAR advancing several lengths from Simpson of Australia...

When we arrived most of the mini-sprint tri-athletes were already finishing their 5k run leg. At the turn of the transition area, everybody is crowding up waiting for the big-league to arrive. In a short while, a group of Australians were nearing the area followed by China and other contenders. They instantly hurried mounting their bikes and sprinted to cover the last leg of the 10 kilometer run. The running course s a 2.5 kilometer loop, so all runners were to complete four rounds to cover the 10 kilometer distance.

 Barrie of Australia chasing Bai of China

At that point, I was hoping that Nikko and his team would arrive soon, but it took them a while than expected. When they started their run leg, the other international contenders are already in their second loop but Filipino supporters were still in the hope they would catch up.

 Jonard Saim trying to chase the pack in the run leg...

Grace Musgrove of Australia...

Wang Yi of China...

Jiao of China...

Zhang Yi of China...


After an intense, almost two hours of waiting, finally, the finish line for the tri-athletes was at hand. It was a ghastly finish for most of the tri-athletes, but certainly they have conquered it. A lot of drama happened at the finish line where some athletes practically collapsed in exhaustion and physical fatigue resulted from the high intensity of the three disciplines and heat. For some who gained a lot of distance in the start but have fallen in the succeeding events, it only shows that a master of one event will not guarantee victory. On the other hand, a slow start with perseverance and consistency can gain an athlete with significant distance, some of  the factors needed to conquer the sports of triathlon.

 First place in the male-elite...

2nd place...

After crossing the finish line, Fellgate of Zimbabue collapsed from exhaustion...

Final ranks…

Top three ages 13-15 mini-sprint (male):
1. Sixto Louie Lalanto (Phil)
2. Jimuel Patilian (Phil)
3. Tareef Azfar (Malaysia)

Top three 13-15 mini-sprint (Female):
1. Zoe Bowden (Malaysia)
2. Vicky Deldio (Phil)
3. Megali Echauz (Phil)

Top three male-elite U23:
1. Nikko Huelgas (Phil)
2. John Chicano (Phil)
3. Shimri Lim (Malaysia)

Top three male-elite:
1. Bai Faquan (China)
2. Benjamin Shaw (Ireland)
3. Shane Barrie (Aus)

Top three female-elite:
1. Eri Kawashima (JPN)
2. Grace Musgrove (Aus)
3. Wang YI (China)

 A pose by some of the world's strongest Tri-athletes...

Philippines bagged the first and second place under Mens-elite U23...

Congratulations to those who have placed themselves in the winner’s podium. For those who finished with a few seconds behind their opponents, including my friend John Jacob, you have the whole year to train and make your performance a few seconds faster in next K-Swiss ITU Subic Bay International Triathlon 2013.


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