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The Magic Hour

It’s 2:56 am, and I wake up like it’s the most natural thing to do. Baby Dash is stirring beside me and it’s time to feed again.  When we get up for the 3am feeding, one of two things will happen: we go back to sleep again, or we don’t, and stay up til it’s time for mommy and daddy to officially start the day between 5 to 6am.  So much for Sunday sleep-ins…

Slowly though, I have gotten used to our routine and can now schedule a training session of at least an hour into the day. It has been more than two months and not too long now til I race my first triathlon after giving birth (small panic attack)! Am excited about the fact that my baby is going really well and I am encouraged by my husband to fit triathlon training into my life again. Not that I went too far away, I just focused on training other people for a year!

As of today, my longest sessions have been: Swimming for 4ominutes, Biking for 3hours (with a feeding break somewhere in the middle), and a run of 1hour 10.  A year ago,this may have all fit into one training day for me, but right now I am happy to even have come up with that within a stretch of a week! Some days I only have 20minutes, but I’ll take it as every second counts for a working/ training/ breastfeeding mommy.

Sometimes I have my apprehensions about diving back into racing again with a small child, but I am encouraged by great women athletes like Paula Radcliffe (won New York Marathon less than 10mos after giving birth) and Dara Torres (qualified for her 5th Olympic Games 15mos after giving birth). Not that I am eyeing feats such as theirs, but they are tremendous examples to look up to!

I will also not be pushed into feeling guilty about taking up my sport so soon after. I am sure that Dash will not like it if I use him as an excuse to slack off, and will in fact be proud to know that he is the reason why I feel like I can do so much better in all aspects of my life now. His presence has given me an extra bit of strength.

I love triathlon and will continue to do it everyday for the rest of my life God willing, but my favorite time of day does not occur while I am training or racing. My Magic Hour is that time, in the wee hours of the morning, when everything else is quiet and I hold my son close to me, his heart and mine beating to the sound of the purest love in the universe. He looks up at me with eyes which tell me how much he needs me to survive, and when I look back into his eyes, I feel like singing that song from Dreamgirls…”you’re the perfect man for me, I love you I do…”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HO4naAiz0Wo

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Filed under Mommy-hood, Newbie Mommy, Random Thoughts, Sketches and Doodles

Timex Multisport Team 2011 Highlights Video

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=788687741529

Thanks to our Team Manager Tristan Brown for putting this together… and even though I raced only til March 2011 I still got included in the video somehow 😉

On to 2012… must make my team proud!

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Filed under Athletes, Photos, Selected Features, Timex

Dash’s First Week: Mommy and Daddy Made It Out Alive, Phew!

Dash is more than a week old now and am happy to report that Mom and Dad survived the maddening 1st week! To say that parenting is a serious job is a gross understatement… let’s start with my delivery, which I believe should be a separate blog entry in itself –but then a new mom only has so much time in her hands!

I had an epidural-free water birth at home, an option I felt most comfortable with. It was a decision that I had to stick with, even in my last hour of labour, which took a total of 25hours. Yes, that long, partly because Dash came out a whopping 9lbs!!! It was pain beyond my imagination, but believe me when I say I did not even entertain getting anesthesia, as I wanted to be really involved in the process, no matter how excruciatingly hard it turned out to be…no race on earth could ever compare to that. TRUST ME. If you don’t, ask my husband, who has done the Ultraman World Championships in Hawaii, which consists of a 10k swim, 421k bike, and 84k run (he placed 8th). To this day he is still in shock about the whole birthing ordeal, haha. He was my rock till the very end though, even when he almost passed out after he saw Dash’s big head come out from underwater. When Deborah, our American midwife, asked if he wanted to cut the umbilical cord, he could not even move his mouth to form any words!

After that it is a big blur of waking up in the middle of the night a couple of times, breastfeeding (ouch. OUCH!!!), changing diapers, bathing, morning strolls, burping, rocking, singing, lots of crying and lots of smiles and laughter.  And here we are.

I write this blog in a hurry while Dash is having his afternoon nap, and it took me umm, 3 hours to make him fall asleep. Obviously we are still trying to get the hang of parenting, but we are fully committed. How can we not be? We are totally smitten with our boy, and am praying that we will be able to raise him well.

Here are pictures of Dash’s first week, and some of our visitors…. thank you for your love always!

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Filed under Family, Mommy-hood, Newbie Mommy, Random Thoughts

Sneak Peek at Maternity Shots by Stanley Ong for Shiphrah Birthing Home…

Today I agreed to do some maternity photos for the benefit of Shiphrah Birthing Home, as they are trying to raise funds to buy the property where the birthing home stands.  Stanley Ong the photographer was really such a professional, and Deborah Gustafson my midwife was on hand to help with the shoot as well!  Here is one shot he took…

To Help the Birthing Home:

After renting for 17 years, we have an excellent opportunity to buy the facility for Shiprhah Birthing Home. A ministry of HELP International Ministries, Inc., Shiphrah Birthing Home is a public home place for birthing families. Shiphrah midwives care for women with dignity and love as we teach, do prenatal check-ups, attend births, check moms and babies after birth, and assist couples in their family planning choices.

You can give easily online at http://meansusa.wordpress.com/donat/. Our Recipient Numbers are: R1613 for General Giving and R1674 for Shiphrah Birthing Home land.

Let’s change the world one birth at a time!

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Filed under Art and Culture, Mommy-hood, Photos, Selected Features

Waiting To Exhale…

I am just about ready to pop, so to speak, but I have a feeling my baby boy will take his sweet time.  That’s okay…this early we want to give him the freedom to decide on the important things in his life.  He might as well start with choosing his birthday!

I have spent the past few years just rushing through things, but this year was different.  I met my husband, got married, and now we are starting a family. Hmm…alright, maybe that too sounds a bit rushed, but I promise it did not feel like that at all!  I guess my husband and I both live life at hyperspeed anyway.

Seriously though, I have been slowing down the past couple of weeks in anticipation of Dash’s arrival, as true to his name, we already know we will be chasing him around!  But we are happy to do so.  In time we hope he outruns us in every way and in the most positive sense of the word.

Still, I have to admit that I am a bit nervous for my most challenging endurance event yet, even though I know that in turn, it will also be a million times more rewarding.

Thankfully, I have a great support group of women who are there for me, and I hang on to every piece of advice (and maternity, and baby items) they voluntarily throw my way.  I just want to thank all of these women who have been so helpful in this special time before things start becoming hectic again:

1. I hardly needed to buy any clothes for my growing body since Mona, Belle, and Tonichi gave me their maternity wear.

2. I did not realize that the literature on mommy-hood would be so overwhelming and diverse.  Everything from the basic “What to Expect When You’re Expecting” to  “Bestfeeding” to “Baby Signing…” thanks to Maricel, Deborah, Candy, Maui, Tonichi, and Pia for pointing me to the right direction. Now let’s hope my brain internalizes most of the stuff!

3. My forever fabulous women friends, those whose names are already mentioned above, plus: Tessa, Doray, Rizzo, Leana, Lara, Leah, Mariela, Honey, Yvonne, Chesca, Vernice, Sandra, Tricia, Chris, Cris, Celda, Ginny, Waya, Oona, Lala, VP, Princess, Gemma, Tita Anthea, Tayo.  Thank you for giving me all kinds of support–like simple “how are you doing” messages, nursery items, and throwing me a lovely baby shower.

4. The women in my family– my mom, my mother-in-law, Amar, my sister Sinag, my sisters-in-law Mae, Anna, and Melissa. Lola Mama, who passed away around the time Dash was conceived this year, has made her presence felt in various forms. I am very blessed to have you all in my life.

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Filed under Family, Friends, Mommy-hood, Random Thoughts

Juan Time: The New Filipino Time by Discovery Channel and Timex

The Juan Time project of Discovery Channel was launched a couple of weeks ago, and it is a very timely concept indeed!  Timex plays an integral role in the project which aims to change the concept of “Filipino Time.”   Far from the widely accepted belief that Pinoys are always late, Juan Time embodies the new Filipino who is professional, punctual, and reliable.

As a Timex athlete,  I was honored to be one of the guests along with Piolo Pascual, Maricel and Anthony Pangilinan and family, Tessa Valdes and Team Valdes.

What a great idea, Discovery Channel!

http://www.philstar.com/Article.aspx?articleId=730348&publicationSubCategoryId=63

 

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Filed under Art and Culture, Selected Features, Timex

Some shots of my new Timex Billboard with Piolo!

I can’t wait to see these myself… I have not been to Manila since they have been put up and apparently they are all over the place according to my friends. Coolness! I felt clumsy having this shoot next to Piolo but it was a great experience!

Now to make sure I get my pre-pregnancy body back post-delivery…haha!

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Filed under Photos, Selected Features, Timex, Uncategorized

Off Season for a Good Reason

As I write this, I am using my pen and paper as there is a nationwide power outage and I am trying to conserve my laptop battery. I am also munching slowly on my breakfast and savouring my cup of hot chocolate. A lingering morning meal is certainly one of life’s simple pleasures.

My husband, on the other hand, is out doing his long run. On any other given Sunday, I would most likely have done the same, but for the next few months I am drastically reducing my run and bike mileage and concentrating more on swimming. No, I am not injured. As a matter of fact, the explanation for my low training volume is quite happy news-we are expecting a baby!  …. to read more, http://teamtimex.timexblogs.com/2011/06/05/off-season-for-a-good-reason/

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Filed under Family, Mommy-hood, Random Thoughts, Timex

FrontRunner Magazine June 2011 Cover Girl

Thanks so much FrontRunner Magazine for allowing me to grace your pages!

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Filed under Coaching and Training, Photos, Running, Selected Features, Timex, Uncategorized

Cosmopolitan Fun Fearless Female Awards Night

I recently received an award from Cosmopolitan Magazine, as apparently I am a Fun Fearless Female, fancy that!

http://www.cosmo.ph/celebs/fun-fearless-females/

 

http://www.philstar.com/Article.aspx?publicationSubCategoryId=70&articleId=683761

It was a great surprise having found out I won the readers’ poll and come to think of it, quite flattering as I don’t really know how many women I have reached out to… maybe more than I think, haha 🙂  Anyway we had a lovely evening with the other awardees who showed up, including Venus Raj, Cristalle Belo Henares, Anne Curtis, Andi Manzano, Frenchesca Farr, and Raissa Laurel.

Here are some of the photos my proud husband took…

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Filed under Art and Culture, Events, Selected Features