A Golden Moment: The Philippine Triathlon Team’s SEAGames journey

A Golden Moment

By Ani de Leon-Brown

The Philippine Triathlon Team’s SEAGames journey

(Reposting from http://hip.inquirer.net/multisport/a-golden-moment/)

I’m standing in anticipation near the finish line. There are other Filipinos waiting there with me—Coach George Vilog, TRAP President Mr. Tom Carrasco, Dr. Martin Camara, Mon Marchan, and other Filipinos who happened to be in Singapore that weekend—Lara, Cha, Rizzo, Deo, Glenn, among others. We are half-celebrating already. Tears are streaming down my face, and Lara laughingly tells me—don’t cry, don’t cry! It’s going to be a 1-2 victory for our country. But who would come in first? At this point, it could be any of our two women racers…

ms_blog_goldenmoment_2

To read more…. http://hip.inquirer.net/multisport/a-golden-moment/

Leave a comment

Filed under Athletes, Race Report

Inspiration, On: Two Race Weekends In Subic

Ani Finish Happy Pushoff Ani Finish Jump Ani Happy Finish

I found inspiration yet again while racing the past two weekends. Not just from those who were on top of the podium, but also from those who were participating in the race for various other reasons. Someone in an unhealthy situation, taking steps to be healthier. Someone who had lost motivation, fighting to make a comeback. Someone who dreams of conquering an open water swim. Someone who is racing for a loved one, or a worthy cause. Someone who just wants to nail a bloody darn good race, once and for all.

They are all champions, and I saw them in the flesh the past two weekends in Subic, battling under the hot sun and winning. It’s sometimes a small war for me to get out of bed early in the morning, but I’m reminded on race day by these athletes why I like to sprinkle my year with even lots more days like these.

It’s been a long break for me, since due to unforeseen circumstances my last proper race was back in July 2014. I felt very rusty in Tri United 1 and Century Tuna IM 70.3. Slowly, though, I am getting the engine oiled up again, and just in time.

Thank you for the past two weekends of awesomeness, my fellow triathletes. It’s a real honor to share the race course with you. Inspiration, on.

I’ll see you in Ironman Taiwan soon!!!

Biking in Tri United 1

Biking in Tri United 1

Unilab Elite Team at TU1

Unilab Elite Team at TU1

11029491_10152589782072038_1572459931803344010_n

Going into T1, removing my BLUESEVENTY speedsuit. Photo by Joni Lopez

11046799_10203882054953986_7479081689587157292_n

Goofing off upon seeing Marichu in the only square meter of shade to be found in the scorching run. Photo by Marichu Talastas.

10369060_806625006052869_4420546778713815573_o

Before the swim start with Forza Tri Team.

11046140_761287090644762_734250038_o

Dan on the bike. Photo by Mary Ann Saquing.

11042673_662645090525466_7285421041787276600_n

Good times with the pros at Ironkids Awarding. Katy Duffield, Dan and Dash, Tim Reed, Belinda Granger, Craig Alexander.

11033894_805765839472119_4144593392844684365_n

By the pool with Alaska Ironkids Host Chiqui Reyes.

10403522_10155283463140621_2604166680239064474_n

With Army Navy South Tri ladies Vanessa, Lea, and Bea.

11057389_10152615873081020_1239429254380757864_n

Celebrating at the Finish Line with Last Minute Tri Team.

11043263_10206119981141165_2763941612730377816_n

With one of our Ironkids participants, Reign Mallari. Photo by Ryan Mallari.

10475426_10203895637486651_6499665983342693738_o

Briefing the first wave of Alaska Ironkids. Photo by Jun Mendoza.

11029481_10206120089823882_2254295550629099670_n

Photo by Ryan Mallari

Leave a comment

Filed under Race Report

The First Phil Bike Expo 2014

Yesterday, I was invited to attend the first ever PHIL BIKE EXPO in the country, and was asked to do a talk as well. I spoke on behalf of the whole triathlon community, and was encouraged by the enthusiasm of Sarita Zafra of TRAP (Triathlon Association of the Philippines) and David Almendral of Light N Up Marketing.

I am now very glad they cajoled me into coming, because this was a landmark event for all cycling enthusiasts in the Philippines. I have been lucky enough to participate once in the famous Las Vegas Interbike Expo, and I honestly think what the organizers did last weekend achieved a bit of the same atmosphere. There was a half pipe, lots of speakers, activities, and all sorts of bike organizations and advocacies present. It was not just a bazaar for bikes and biking accessories.

I genuinely wish this endeavour great success and am very excited about how much better the Phil Bike Expo next year will shape up to be! Congratulations to all the participants and organizers!!!

Screen Shot 2014-11-17 at 6.28.23 PM

Screen Shot 2014-11-17 at 6.26.02 PM

Screen Shot 2014-11-17 at 6.17.21 PM

1507211_10152455992346200_8381753397243398187_n

10425865_10152456018301200_6224138245122822123_n

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

ENERVON ACTIV 226 CAMP at SEDA HOTEL NUVALI, NOV 8-9 2014

Itching to train for a full Iron Distance this weekend?

Then join our Enervon Activ 226 Camp on Nov 8-9, 2014 at SEDA HOTEL NUVALI! Free registration for all Registered Enervon Activ 226 racers…but if you aren’t registered yet, don’t worry, all you need to do is present a receipt/ proof of purchase for 20 capsules of ENERVON ACTIV, or you can just buy the 20 capsules in our booth during the weekend.

Camp participants get special discounts for SEDA hotel room and restaurant rates!

You have until Nov 7, 3pm to reserve your slot at nextsteptri@gmail.com. See you there!

Coaches: Ani de Leon- Brown/ Andy Leuterio

*The Enervon Activ 226 Race will be held in Panglao, Bohol on Dec 6, 2014.

*Visit our FB Page:
https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Next-Step-Triathlon-Camp-Series/176292879075942?sk=timeline

enervonactiv226

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Challenge Roth 2014 Race Report: Still Learning, Still Loving Every Moment, Still Living The Dream


20x30-CRGD3024

It’s no secret that I love Ironman Distance racing…of the hundreds of multisport races I have done, I honestly only really remember the epic ones- ones wherein I have had to dig deep to finish. The others are unfortunately just blurred images of lycra, sweat, aid stations and pasta parties.

But that’s me, and people are different. I actually prefer swimming, biking and running for longer distances, and I’m not going to apologize for it. I love the race and the whole process that I have to go through to get there—it makes me feel alive. I WANT MORE, SO I DO MORE. And this here is the story of my 11th Iron Distance journey.

And oh, what a journey it was. It was not just any other race, this was Challenge Roth, the triathlon race of lore.

GRFB and GLENDA: Two forces to be reckoned with!

My running group Girls Run For Breakfast had organized a send-off dinner a few days before I left. They are an amazing bunch of Kick-Ass women and just amazing friends and I really wanted to do this race well for them.

Getting out of Manila was a bit of an ordeal in itself though, as I had left the Wednesday Typhoon Glenda decided to showcase her wrath. The airport was in utter chaos, and it took us more than an hour to go through immigration, so our flight was more than two hours delayed. I had a connecting flight from Abu Dhabi to Dusseldorf, and when I landed in Abu Dhabi the flight to Dusseldorf was already on its Final Call. That was my main workout for the day, running as fast as I could with my luggage from one gate to another, and I made it just as they were about to close their doors. From there it was two more plane rides, one subway ride, one train ride, and one car ride to get to Roth on a fine Thursday afternoon. And what a lovely welcome I received from my homestay family, the Woelfels:

Screen Shot 2014-07-27 at 9.02.48 PM

3 Flags: Philippines, Roth, and Germany

The Rhine–Main–Danube Canal

On Friday Morning I arranged to meet with one of the other Filipino participants, Noelle, at the swim practice.  I felt great in my brand new Blueseventy Helix Wetsuit, and the water temperature suited me perfectly.

Screen Shot 2014-07-27 at 8.54.56 PM

Yay my Blueseventy Helix wetsuit fits! Phew (Photo by Sven Woelfel)

Screen Shot 2014-07-27 at 8.54.37 PM

Was great to see Noelle (Photo by Sven Woelfel)

 

Roaming Around the Expo

I picked up my race packet afterwards and roamed around the humongous expo grounds.

Screen Shot 2014-07-27 at 8.55.18 PM

Cool ZOOT car!

Screen Shot 2014-07-28 at 12.25.25 AM

Lunch with Sven

Screen Shot 2014-07-27 at 8.55.29 PM

Hanging out by the registration

 

Roth Town Welcome Party Friday Night

In the evening I had a blast at the Bayern 3 welcome party!

Screen Shot 2014-07-27 at 8.59.21 PM

Bayern 3 Party

Screen Shot 2014-07-27 at 8.55.44 PM

My lovely German Homestay Family, the Wölfels

Challenge Women Run on Saturday morning

The next day the Woelfels and I cheered for Eva as she ran the 5k Womens Race.

Screen Shot 2014-07-27 at 9.00.00 PM

My homestay Eva raced in the Challenge Womens 5k on Saturday morning

Screen Shot 2014-07-27 at 9.00.09 PM

A photo with race emcee, my favorite Belinda Granger (Photo by Sven Woelfel)

Screen Shot 2014-07-28 at 12.25.54 AM

Cheering for Eva with Leo, Johanna, Sven, and Lucia

Bike Check In on Saturday afternoon

It was getting very hot so we fled from the sun and came out again in the last hour of the bike check in to tuck my baby in for the night. It was going to be a long day tomorrow. I kissed my trusty steed for luck.

Screen Shot 2014-07-27 at 9.00.36 PM

See you tomorrow my trusty steed! (Photo by Sven Woelfel)

Screen Shot 2014-07-27 at 9.10.38 PM

All Racked Up! (Photo by Sven Woelfel)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Screen Shot 2014-07-27 at 9.00.56 PM

3,500 Individual participants and 650 Relay Teams make for a Giant Transition Area

 

Race Day Beckons

Yes, I still get very nervous, very very much so, on race morning. People ask me this question all the time. This is what I live for. The gut wrenching feeling which signals the impending battle you are about to take on.

Screen Shot 2014-07-27 at 9.01.29 PM

Arland checking out the swim (Photo by Sven Woelfel)

Screen Shot 2014-07-27 at 9.01.12 PM

Noelle and I started in the same wave (Photo by Sven Woelfel)

The song choices of the DJ that morning were very motivational, including an Olympics anthem which made my hair stand up even more.

Screen Shot 2014-07-27 at 9.03.15 PM

We swam underneath this bridge (Photo by Sven Woelfel)

Screen Shot 2014-07-27 at 9.03.29 PM

250,000 Spectators on Race Day. 40,000 Spectators at The Canal. Crazy! (Photo by Sven Woelfel)

Individual Participant Sister Madonna leads the prayer

Screen Shot 2014-07-27 at 9.02.35 PM

Rockstar Sister Madonna Buder, 83 yo (Photo by Sven Woelfel)

Inspirational CAF (Challenged Athletes Foundation) Ambassador Rudy Tolson Garcia

Screen Shot 2014-07-27 at 9.03.55 PM

Out of the water

Walking to his bag

Walking to his bag

Prosthetics On

Prosthetics On

Out of the swim in good spirits

I felt like I swam well enough, so I was very happy. I set out to do a fast transition as every second counted!

Screen Shot 2014-07-27 at 9.04.46 PM

Photo by Sven Woelfel

Smashed on the Bike

On the bike I started out fine but began to worry when after 2hours or so the hills didn’t seem to let up. Then I realized they weren’t going to. Haha. I shook my head and laughed. The times here are fast because of the strong Germans, not because it’s a fast course!

Okay Mathias, Jurgen, Thomas, Dirk 1, Dirk 2,  Jens and Wolfgang. You have permission to overtake me!!! :)

After that I let myself relax a bit more as there was still a long way to go. I had to maintain a decent pace but made sure I did not overdo it. Energy management: that is Ironman in a nutshell for you!

Solarer Berg

I just need to talk about this hill. It is amazing. It is magical. I was sobbing and laughing wildly at the same time. I am a big fan of classic cycling races and the Tour De France, and I have always wondered what it felt like to be cycling in one of the stages. Well, you get a wicked glimpse of it on Solar Hill. It may have lasted but a few minutes, but these are minutes from my life that I will always remember.

20x30-CRFQ1376

 Slugfest on the Run

The marathon course of Roth is very scenic and forgiving on your joints due to the hard packed trail surface. I would have probably appreciated it better on any other day. But today, it was a slug. I just did not have the energy left to produce a decent run. I only had myself to blame as I had to admit I probably did not do enough bike and run volume, which had now led to this. But every race you learn. Or re-learn.

One of the things I love about Iron distance racing is that it always give you a big serving of humble pie when you need it most. At this point in my career I tend to take basic things for granted, like laying the groundwork properly, and when I go to races like this unprepared I pretty much pay for it. Racing long distance constantly keeps me grounded. I can never stray too far once I start being too complacent!

Emotional Finish (yes, again)

EmoEmo

I saw my host family waiting for me in Town at the 40k mark, and I was very very happy to see them. Little Leo ran about 150meters with me. It was great. Macca just happened to be standing nearby too and ran to give me a High Five as I passed.

Finally, I was on the last stretch. Once you hear the noise from the stadium you are home free. I looked for Sven as I wanted to get the Philippine Flag from him. It meant a lot to me to carry it through the finish line.

When I saw him a few hundred meters to go I was in such an emotional state already. I always am. I just can’t help it. I let the tears flow. I guess my finish does not feel complete without them.

Screen Shot 2014-07-27 at 9.08.47 PM

Unfolding the flag before I take the last few meters towards the finish line (Photo by Sven Woelfel)

20x30-CRFK1427

Forever Grateful to be able to Finish. Always grateful to be able to FINISH. Thank you God for another amazing journey.

Screen Shot 2014-07-27 at 9.06.18 PM

Women’s Champ Mirinda Carfrae, blazing fast run

Screen Shot 2014-07-27 at 9.07.07 PM

Challenge Roth 2014 Winner TIMO BRACHT

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Auf Wiedersehen

And just like that, the race weekend was over. I stayed two more days in Roth before heading home mostly because I wanted to spend some time with Dan’s homestay family the three times he had raced there.  It was great to meet the Wölfs as I had heard so much about them from Dan. They were very happy to meet me as well. They showed me some photos during Dan’s stays with them. I could see why my husband liked them very much.

Screen Shot 2014-07-28 at 2.11.27 AM

I was very happy to finally meet Dan’s family in Roth!

Screen Shot 2014-07-28 at 2.11.07 AM

Dan’s homestay family in Roth got out their photo albums and showed me some pics of Dan the couple of years he did Roth and stayed with them

Screen Shot 2014-07-28 at 2.10.51 AM

Some gelato in the square with Lucia and Leo

Screen Shot 2014-07-27 at 8.59.47 PM

My parting gifts…Timex watches for Eva and Sven and some dried mangoes from the Philippines!

On my last day in Germany the Wölfels took me to Nuremberg wherein we had a few hours to stroll around before my train took off. They are a lovely family and I am so blessed to have had the opportunity to stay with them.  I thought of my own small family, Dan and Dash, and how much I longed to see them. It was time to go home.

It had been an eventful and productive trip, with new friends and lasting memories made. Auf wiedersehen Roth, until we meet again!

 

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS:

Girls Run For Breakfast and UNILAB–THANK YOU!!! Timex, Gatorade, Rudy Project, Zoot/ Light’N’Up Marketing, Yurbuds, ALASKA Milk, Enervon Activ, Shimano, Glen Colendrino for my RETUL fit, my ULAH teammates and my boys Tyrone Regaliza, David Almendral and Maiqui Dayrit.

Felix Walchshoefer and Elke Angermann.

Thanks to my ever loving family, Dan and Dash, the de Leons, Sarabias, and the Browns. My Team Transformers Claire and Epoy, Ben, Philip and Mark🙂 And of course my homestay family the Wölfels and Dan’s homestay family the Wölfs.

 

See Related Feature by SWIMBIKERUNph here:

http://www.swimbikerun.ph/2014/07/rothmyworld-ani-de-leon-brown-arland-macasieb-and-noelle-de-guzman-2014-challenge-roth-finishers-sbr-ph-infocus-special-edition/

 

 

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Challenge Tires, Challenged Athletes, Enervon Activ, Gatorade, Ironman Racing, Race Report, Shimano Tri, Timex, Uncategorized, Unilab Active Health, Yurbuds

Ironman Melbourne: 10th Time’s the Charm

The first time I had a taste of proper triathlon training was when I hooked up with Coaches Tony Benson and Sean Foster from the Melbourne Triathlon Club, back in 2002. I learned so much from that stint and have come back to Australia several times since, to train, to coach, and to race. I have always had a soft spot for Melbourne though, because of my wonderful first trip.

It took some time, but I was finally able to return and race the Ironman there this year. And it sure was worth every minute, as for the first time in my Ironman racing career, I was able to finish in daylight! I guess you could say I am a slow learner, and yes, maybe I should have been able to go faster for Ironman sooner. I don’t mind though, and I do what I can–each and every Ironman I have done is a gem of a learning experience. I am still discovering new things, I still don’t consider my time fast, but this is exactly the reason why Ironman continues to challenge and excite me.

20140322_113610

I’d like to enumerate my Ironman Distance races here just for fun, and also because I have never actually kept a list before–I might start forgetting what I did down the road, haha🙂

1. Ironman Distance Race, Matabungkay Philippines, Nov 2002.  13:04

2. Ironman Langkawi, Feb 2008. 12:21

3. Ironman World Championships Hawaii, Oct 2008. 12:07

4. Ironman Langkawi, Feb 2009. 11:45

5. Ironman China, Mar 2010. 13:39 bad, bad, race😦

6. Ironman Australia, May 2012. 13:36 first IM race after giving birth, Dashy was 5mos and 5days🙂

7. Timex 226 Philippines, Dec 2012. 12:18

8. Challenge Taiwan Full, May 2013. 12:24

9. Ironman Cairns, June 2013. 11:51

10. Ironman Melbourne, Mar 2014. 11:08

At the Bike Turnaround, amazing crowd!

Moving forward, I have plans to do other Ironman races this year (given a sibling to Dash doesn’t come along yet😉 and will announce them soon enough. I am so blessed to be surrounded by a great group of family and friends, and this is the main reason why I can continue to do this. Dan’s Family and My Family gave us the gift of time for a week– Dan’s parents took time out of their busy schedules to fly into Melbourne from Sydney to watch us, and my family took care of Dash for a whole week in Manila. Our friends, both in Manila and Australia, sent so many lovely messages of support throughout the week, especially my Girls Run For Breakfast ladies! Our sponsors, Timex and Unilab among others, to whom I will always be grateful.DSC_1433

We had a remarkably sizeable Philippine Contingent in Ironman Melbourne this year, thanks to the efforts of Fred Uytengsu and Princess Galura of the Sunrise Events/ Ironman 70.3 Philippines Team. It was a record number of Filipino participants and I was so proud to be part of it. We are already planning the next Ironman destination as I write this, and I am very happy to travel again with such a fun and energetic group.

IMG_28030740143447IMG-20140319-WA0001_20140319092615309

It has been over a week already and I am still smiling from all the wonderful memories. I love Ironman and I always will. I Thank God for always blessing an ordinary person like me with so many opportunities, as I may not be that fast, but I am able to endure. Which is why I know I am tailor-made for this. Be it a daylight or night time finish🙂

1 Comment

Filed under Ironman, Ironman Racing, Race Report

List of #YolandaPH relief efforts by Runners and Triathletes

MULTISPORT ATHLETES FOR YOLANDA:

Our whole country is at a standstill right now and all hands are needed. Our local triathletes and runners have wasted no time and have gone all out to help out. These are just a few organized efforts by my fellow endurance athletes locally:

1. ONE RUN by The Bull Runner: http://thebullrunner.com

1469758_594485273933511_333274018_n

2. SWIMBIKERUN.PH Race For Yolanda

A MultiSport Auction for the Victims of Yolanda: http://www.swimbikerun.ph/2013/11/race-for-yolanda-donation-drive-swimbikerunserve/

Screen Shot 2013-11-13 at 11.48.13 AM

3. PINOY FITNESS Charity Run Meet: http://www.pinoyfitness.com/2013/11/pinoy-fitness-pepsquad-events-charity-run-meet-2013/

pinoyfitness-pepsquad-run-meet-2013

4. Rescue Run by Greentennial Team: http://www.pinoyfitness.com/2013/11/rescue-run-yolanda-november-16-2013/

20131115-103223.jpg

5. Run.PH Shirt Drive: http://www.run.ph/home.jsp

1466187_10151978895099322_355833484_n

6. Multisport Iloilo Drive for Northern Iloilo victims of Typhoon Yolanda courtesy of triathlete Philip Co, et al. Email: yolanda@rotarymetroiloilo.org

988370_594517497263622_2131746677_n

7. St. Luke’s Run For Wellness: http://www.stlukesrun.com/

20131114-144049.jpg

8. Interclub Team Time Trial conducted by Fitness First. Dec 1 2013, Nuvali. Contact anton718@gmail.com for details

9. Sunrise Events Jerseys and Memorabilia Auction

http://triathlon.competitor.com/2013/11/news/special-squadra-jersey-to-benefit-philippines_90331

20131123-160917.jpg

10. Girls Run For Breakfast in cooperation with Thailand Triathlon Cycling Club #RacingForThePhilippines tattoos

Buy these tattoos for Php 140 each! All proceeds go to #YolandaPH rebuilding efforts

20131123-163425.jpg

2 Comments

Filed under Yurbuds