Go go go

Wednesday, April 2nd, 2014 11:05 pm
geminianeyes: Fran X Miles Double Team  (Fran X Miles Double Team)

10KM Medal from PBIM 2013.
10KM Medal from PBIM 2013.

Pull the trigger slam the door
Pick up the pace, it’s time to go
Penang Bridge just you wait
Half Marathon here I come!

Now if only the bloody thing will open for registration. ;_;

Original entry as appearing at Ink to Screen.

Zombies, Run!

Thursday, January 9th, 2014 12:21 am
geminianeyes: Fran X Miles Double Team  (Fran X Miles Double Team)

I love Zombies, Run! It’s an app that takes storytelling to another level; you’re Runner 5, and you are part of a team that’s responsible for gathering supplies and completing missions in Abel Township.

I bought both the full version and the 5K training app, (the latter I feel is more torturous compared to the actual app) and the voice acting is superb. How good is it?

I found myself cooing as though to a baby during one of the missions today. While running/walking, I actually went, “There there, darling, shhh it’s going to be ok, awww, shhhhh don’t cry honey” and etc etc in reply to whatever was happening on my phone. And I actually felt a pang of pain when they talked about the baby’s parents.

I think I freaked out a few of the other gym members whoops.

But yes. Awesome app. Get it now. They’re currently having a New Year sale, so it’s much cheaper than normal.

With that, zzzzzzz….

Original entry as appearing at Ink to Screen.

geminianeyes: Fran X Miles Double Team  (Fran X Miles Double Team)

Besides being a writer, I’m also a gamer at heart. Scores give me an idea of how well I do, and how well I don’t. So in real life, until otherwise proven, running’s one of the easiest games for me to get into. :P

Below are my “high scores” over the past… 17 months?

  • 14 July 2012: Men’s Health Shape Run
    Distance: 12.42 km
    Time: 1hr 55 mins
    Avg pace: 9 mins 19 seconds
  • 30 Sept 2012: PJ Half Marathon
    Distance: 7.45 km
    Time: 1 hr 9 mins
    Avg Pace: 9 mins 17 seconds
  • 13 Oct 2012: Nike We Run KL
    Distance: 10.08km
    Time: 1hr 37 mins
    Avg pace: 9 mins 43 seconds
  • 18 Nov 2012: Penang Bridge International Marathon
    Distance: 10.25km
    Time: 1hr 32 minutes
    Avg Pace: 9 mins 3 seconds
  • 29 Sept 2013: Standard Chartered KL Marathon
    Distance: 11.18km
    Time: 1hr 29 mins
    Avg Pace: 8 mins*
    Oddly enough, my official time is 1hr 30mins.
  • 17 Nov 2013: Penang Bridge International Marathon
    Distance: 10.27km
    Time: 1hr 26 mins
    Avg Pace: 8 mins 28 seconds

Wow, all things considered, PBIM 2013 seems to have been a PB of sorts, though SCKLM comes close. It LIES btw. That 10km felt like it was 12km, and apparently my GPS agrees.

Original entry as appearing at Ink to Screen.

geminianeyes: Fran X Miles Double Team  (Fran X Miles Double Team)

If I sign up for something, I generally want to get my money’s worth (who doesn’t?). But with the weather like this… I think I’d rather go have breakfast and then come home to sleep.

Hazy Putrajaya at 7am.

Yes, that is Putrajaya at 7am. Usually you can see the building in the distance clearly, but today, you can barely see it. And that’s not mist, it’s haze. *cough cough hack*

Original entry as appearing at Ink to Screen.

geminianeyes: Fran X Miles Double Team  (Fran X Miles Double Team)

I am boycotting all Hivelocity events in the future. This isn’t the first time they’ve made a mess of things (they also organised the PJ Half Marathon, which suffered mainly from messy registration and somewhat messy run) but this one seems to be quite the disaster. Here’s what I posted on G+:

Read the rest of this entry »

Original entry as appearing at Ink to Screen.

geminianeyes: Fran X Miles Double Team  (Fran X Miles Double Team)

So last night I somehow ended up running in the Men’s Health/Shape 2012 Run. It was a rather interesting experience, considering that I did not really train for this, and that it was my first time running with my new sports shoes (not the first time I used then, just the first time they were going to be used in a run) and vest.

I picked up the Wind Goddess a bit later than expected because I had a prior appointment with Joicy and it took a bit longer than expected. My brother then decided to drive us there, so I just needed to focus on getting myself ready for the run. Well, we reached there with plenty of time to spare, and unlike the Standard Chartered KL Marathon (I was there as support), we didn’t have any trouble locating the parking areas and meeting up with runners. Neon yellow-green vests are very visible!

Flag-off time was 8pm, and Wind Goddess and I were there at 7.10pm plus, so we decided to wander around. I didn’t take too many photos because I wanted to conserve my phone’s battery for the run, so we took just a few shots.

Including this lovely sunset!

Sunset over Putrajaya
Alt text reads: Sunset over Putrajaya

And then night fell quickly. Wind Goddess and I had decided to be kiasu and line up close to the front. According to her, “It’s a strategy, so that no matter where you are, you won’t come in last.” And this was how close we were to the front:

Close to the front
Alt text reads: Close to the front

Here’s the lopsided view of what it looked from the back:

To the back~ To the back~
Alt text reads: To the back~ To the back~

There were a few performances, including some by the Star’s Cheer National Champions, but they had a quiet reception because not many people could see them. Then they called the VIP who was the President of Perbandaran Putrajaya (I’d explain what that is, but the official site is down, hmmm). He was supposed to send us off, and I thought he’d give us a speech first before running off, but the next thing I knew we were off and running and I was fumbling with my phone.

But then we were running, and I remember telling myself to pace my steps. Didn’t really work as I was still moving quite fast, but as we left the bright lights of Putrajaya and hit the bridge, I began to slow down and start walking fast. Which was still not quite enough to beat Wind Goddess; I overtook her twice and then she did the same and I didn’t see her again after. :p

As I ran, I began to feel out of breath. My chest felt like it was on fire and I thought I would be done before I had barely begun. However, I persevered. There was no way I was going to let this beat me at the first kilometre. I caught myself wondering at times why in the world did I sign up for this, and then being very glad that I decided to dump extra songs in Mort; he played quite a few songs that pumped the blood and helped me pace myself.

I hit the first water station about 23 minutes after leaving the finish line. That one small cup of water rejuvenated me. Had to slow down a bit to drink the water, then I started jogging quickly looking for a trash can. There was no way I was going to be like the other runners who simply threw the cups on the ground. Littering is bad, people!

That said, I kept on running till I began to get a bit distracted, like Secret did when she did the SCKLM 10km run. I took my time looking around, feeling the cooling wind on my body, before I kept jogging up and down. It was also one of the few times I took a photo while running. Here, have a pic of what it looked like:

Runners everywhere! All walking lol
Alt text reads: Runners everywhere! All walking lol

Whoever told me that the route was mainly flat was definitely off their assessment. There were apparently 4 hills according to Zorocaster, and so I tackled them as best as I could. My strategy was simple; climb/crawl up the hill, then jog down.

If you follow my pace in Endomondo, they didn’t quite always work. However, I realise that the water stations actually help a lot. The temptation is to resist taking more than one, or I should just grab the bottle. The water wasn’t just used in my body; I poured some of them on my head, face, and even my shoulders. It helped cool me down.

Also did I mention that my running top was pretty awesome? I was using the Nike Women’s Dri-FIT Swift Y-Back Long Shirt, and it actually kept me pretty cool. In fact, I was aware of sweat only on my arms and back, where it was exposed. My tummy and other areas didn’t feel wet at all, which is pretty unusual considering that usually when I run in a t-shirt, these areas would be sweating like anything.

After that first water station, I discovered that breathing and lung burning weren’t there any more. In fact, I was almost comfortable with running… except that it was time to discover that various parts of my body were now screaming. First it was my left thigh, then my right foot, then my right thigh, then my lower left foot… roughly in that order. Yes, they were all polite enough to take turns to scream at me. At one point I think even my lower right abdomen side was screaming. :D

As long as I kept moving though, the pain was fairly muted. When I looked around to see where I was, I realised I was on the opposite side of the lake. The first thought that ran through my mind was “Wow, I ran that far? I can do this!”

So I kept running. And jogging. Then walking. But always I was moving. I did not dare stop, because I knew then that I would be done for. So I just kept putting one feet in front of the other. Till I saw this sign after the last water station and went yay!

Alt text reads: LAST THREE KM!

My very first thought was: OMG YAY LAST THREE KM! This was then followed by “KANASAI WHY IS IT UPHILL?” (that’s a Chinese swear word, in case you were wondering). My colleague describes it as killer, and I agree. It was no joke climbing it, and through it all my body was saying, “You’ve got to be kidding me, right? We’re running uphill on this?”

We did it though, and then it was a bit of fun as we ran traffic lights, through a relatively flat road, and the next thing I knew I saw the lights of the bright Putrajaya centre. This made me jog and walk a bit faster, and it was enough for me to come in at 1 hour 55 minutes for a 12.42km run (officially the run was 11.8km, but Endomondo tracked me a bit longer). Towards the last I saw plenty of camera people taking photos, so I did the next best thing…

I made faces at them. I’m still waiting for the photos to appear, but when I crossed the finish line, my first thought was “OMG. I MADE IT. I DID… WAIT IS THAT AN APPLE GIMMIE THAT OMNOMNOMNOM” because they were giving out apples at the end. Then I let out a whoop cause damnit, I RAN 11.8KM! Then I checked my time. Discovered it was under two hours.

Was on a high the rest of the night. :D

Original entry as appearing at Ink to Screen.

geminianeyes: Cute sisters from PW as kids (Default)

So, I thought that after posting this, the whole Fitness First saga would have been over. You know, like those epic side-quests that you don’t really have to do but you do cause it’s easy/you get a side benefit kind of quests? Well, as it turns out, this is not a minor side quest at all. It’s turning out to be a single Quest that has a time limit. So what happened?

My brother got a SMS on Thursday telling him that he owes money for his Fitness First membership. We both went @@ at that, because by right, we had terminated both our accounts on November 19. You know what? Here, have a letter I’m writing to the NST and Star Editors:

Read the rest of this entry »

Original entry as appearing at Reach Into Your Soul.

geminianeyes: Cute sisters from PW as kids (Default)

As I mentioned in this entry, the Fitness First saga, for now, has been concluded. This side quest seems to have been completed successfully with needing just the time period of one month for me to finish the last few details.

Despite saying that, there are still a few things that bug me about the way Fitness First handled my complaints. These relate mainly to the way they communicated with me.

As I mentioned in this post, Fitness First took their own sweet time to contact me. Now, when I spoke to Ms Cook about them, she said that Fitness First did try to contact me, but they kept getting a busy signal.

Which struck me as odd, as my default setting for calls if you can’t get through is for them to go to my voicemail. Also, they had my email address. Would it really have been too hard for them to just email me to say, “Hey, we tried to call your phone but it was engaged, so could you give us a ring back or something?”

Also, NLP training for the win! They were prepared to rebut my points, but completely neglected to realise that I was not complaining about what had been done to my own account, but rather, it was my brother’s account. :3 So once we pointed that out, we more or less settled the issue.

Ah well. No more auto-debit for me. Nor credit cards either. I’m going cash all the way.

Original entry as appearing at Reach Into Your Soul.

geminianeyes: Cute sisters from PW as kids (Default)

So, today was the do-or-die day with Fitness First. A few days ago, Siti had called to set an appointment with me and my brother today to settle all our billing complaints. We set the appointment for today, anytime after 2.30pm because my brother was working and I’m not quite coherent first thing in the morning.

Today after his work, bro came to pick me up and we drove to the Curve to settle everything. Bear in mind, I do owe Fitness First some outstanding bills totalling up to RM331. As a recap, the issues I had with Fitness First were:

Rebates were processed extremely slowly.
When I first signed up with Fitness First, I was obliged to pay for the Bodyfirst program, the total of which would be refunded to me after I had gone to Fitness First at least 8 times within the first 60 days of signup. Once I had done so, I needed to fill a form stating that I wanted my rebate back. Now, when my brother and me did so, there are two things to take into account. They told us that as long as we submitted the form before the 20th, it should be reflected in the following month’s bill.

Conclusion? We found out from Amanda Cook today that the actual process takes at least one month, so the rebate would be reflected the 2nd month AFTER we submitted the form. This means that when I submitted my form in April, it was only reflected in June. For my account, that was fine, but for my brother’s account? It was only reflected in AUGUST. Something doesn’t quite seem right there, does it? However, since we did get the issue resolved in the end, I consider the matter solved. However, I hold it up as an example of billing gone completely and utterly wrong.

Updating billing details? Not done
As I mentioned in the previous entries, my brother and me submitted our billing details in September 2010 to update our accounts. Now, apparently according to the system, my change was done; Fitness First reflects the billing details of my Public Bank account. HOWEVER, it does not reflect my brother’s updated billing details, which should be pointing instead to his RHB account. This resulted in my Maybank account being debited, which was the reason why I went to Fitness First to complain.

Conclusion? A check in the Fitness First action logs showed that requests to update billing details to RHB was received and processed. However, the following deduction was still done to my Maybank account. For this, Club Manager Amanda Cook apologised to us. This followed:

Brother: So, who’s supposed to get shot?

Cook: That’s what I intend to find out.

My money is not my own
I went to Fitness First on Friday, 4 November 2010 to clear this up. The biggest issue I had with the Front of House manager I spoke to was that she implied that my money was not my own, that I could not cancel my direct debit without express permission from Fitness First. This was later clarified by Amanda Cook and her explanation made far more sense than the other girl’s.

Conclusion? Be very, very careful of what you say to a English speaker. There is a lot of difference between the word “right” and “control” in this context.

Saga’s TLDR report?
My Fitness First membership and my brother’s has been cancelled with effect from 1 December 2010. We’ve signed the forms and it’s all been submitted. Now to see if they will actually honour it.

Original entry as appearing at Reach Into Your Soul.

geminianeyes: Cute sisters from PW as kids (Default)

The best hallmarks a scam is that they’ll ask you to pay, but when you chase them for enquiries, they take forever to get back to you.

So it is with Fitness First the Curve, Malaysia, which is really starting to sound like a well-planned scam I did not see coming. You see, even though the story has been published in the Malay Mail and I’ve dropped a note to the Fitness First management over at their website, it seems that Fitness First the Curve is DETERMINED to drag their feet over the matter. I emailed them about two weeks ago.

On Saturday, 4th November 2010, I received a response from one Amanda Cook, apparently the manager of Fitness First Curve, promising to look into the case. She asked for some information which I provided. This was her email (attaching screenshot to take note of the date):

Read the rest of this entry »

Original entry as appearing at Reach Into Your Soul.

geminianeyes: Cute sisters from PW as kids (Default)

I just submitted this to the Malay Mail, complaining about Fitness First Malaysia. To say that I am supremely annoyed is a major understatement. I delivered an ultimatum to them earlier today: I would pay only what I owe them, which is RM331 for the months I did not attend and the months I suspended, which is till this month. If they dare to charge me in December 2010 and January 2011 before my contract is up in February 2011, I will be taking them to Small Claims’ Court, as I want to terminate my account with immediate effect. They’ve broken faith with me twice (first time was with the rebate: it took my bro and me 3 months, filling up the forms TWICE and ensuring my account had too little money left for them to auto-debit before it was finally reflected in the system). I fail to see why I should allow them to leech off my account.

In March my brother and me signed up for Fitness First memberships. Due to certain factors, we decided to use my Maybank account for both our subscriptions. In September, we both submitted Update Billing forms to Fitness First Curve, with my brother’s acc being placed under his own banking account and mine being transferred to a secondary banking account meant only for recurring bills like Fitness First. As a precaution, I also submitted forms to Maybank requesting for the cancellation of Fitness First’s auto-debit on my account. As requested by Fitness First, these documents were submitted on 19 September 2010, in time for their admin to make changes.

It’s now November 4. I thought all the changes would have been made by last month. Imagine my surprise when I found RM215 missing from my account, the exact same amount for a Fitness First monthly subscription. A check with Fitness First revealed that YES, they debited the wrong account. Demands for an explanation was met with a weak, “Oh, we’ve submitted this already, don’t know why the admin did not update.” This is in addition to the counter staff knowing FULL WELL that my brother and me had already submitted the forms way in advance, at THEIR REQUEST. Yet they want us to RESUBMIT the forms, which would be quite a hassle as that means my brother and me will need to provide them with the front page of our bank books. AGAIN.

At the same time, when I mentioned that I had already requested for the payment to be stopped from the Maybank side, the girl at the counter told me that it was not something Maybank could do. Even if I, as the account holder, requested Maybank (through Maybank’s own forms) to stop the auto-debit, Maybank could not do so without permission from Fitness First.

My response to that, “So wait, you’re telling me that just because I allowed Fitness First to auto-debit my account to pay you, I have no right and control over my account to stop the payments?”

Her reply, “Yes, they cannot do that without you first informing us to stop the payments.”

To say the billing system for Fitness First sucks is a major understatement. I told them in no uncertain terms that due to this third billing fiasco, I wanted them to terminate my account with effect from December. However, I am told that I cannot do so, as I am a new member. No terminations are allowed, even though Fitness First has screwed me over with their billing system.

If Fitness First has broken faith, why should I be the one to pay for their incompetence? I’ve followed the procedure set TWICE by them, yet they can’t seem to follow it themselves. Why then, should I complete the contract when they have broken faith so badly?

So annoyed. Writing meme delayed till Sunday. :P

Original entry as appearing at Reach Into Your Soul.

Am alive

Tuesday, February 23rd, 2010 02:22 pm
geminianeyes: Cute sisters from PW as kids (Default)

Gym yesterday was excruciating. It proves without a doubt that I am horribly out of shape. At 59.4kg and with 34.4% fat mass, I’m in a place I don’t like. By middle of March, I intend to be at least at 30% fat and to lose all the fat till I get to 25%.

Right now, I can still do quite a bit on the crosstrainers- I set it for 10 minutes yesterday and went overboard to 15 minutes, so I have no idea how much I was walking yesterday. I want to get back to doing at least 2km a session on that machine.

That said, Fitness First is quite small, else it was because I was too itchified to go there on the first Monday when everyone went back to the gym after the Chinese New Year holidays. Man were there a LOT of people! After my sessions with my personal trainer, I think I might move over to Axis or Uptown. Too crowded otherwise. :P

Original entry as appearing at Reach Into Your Soul.

January 2015

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