Category Archives: Athletes

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

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…


To read more….

Leave a comment

Filed under Athletes, Race Report

‘Just get up and run’


The partner athletes behind Unilab’s Active Health campaign encourage families to get started on exercise programs—and to keep things fun to stay on them


12:44 am | Tuesday, February 28th, 2012

Race organizer Rio del Rosario

Triathlete Ani de Leon-Brown has been active all her life—until she got pregnant and had to slow down. A 10K used to be an “easy run,” but three months after giving birth, she could hardly run for four minutes straight.

“It was very hard for me to get back to my former speed. My first run was just four minutes, and the next was 10. After three days, I was able to complete 10 minutes, then 15,” she explained. “The thing with running is you have to slug it out for the first two weeks, then it will get better—and you will feel better.”

The new mom is a three-time Philippine National Triathlon champion and the first Filipino woman to join the Ironman World Championship in Kona, Hawaii. She is promoting an active lifestyle not just for women, but for the whole family, reminding everyone that getting active means having energy to do more things.

Ani is one of the partner athletes in Unilab’s Active Health campaign. She and husband Dan, runners Rio del Rosario and Jaymie Pizarro, and cyclist Raul Cuevas recently gave a talk on how to start and stay active.

The event, held at Holiday Inn Galleria in Ortigas, Pasig, also introduced Unilab’s lineup of sports activities for the year.

Family run

Active Health is the fitness division of Unilab Laboratories, Inc., a 65-year-old pharmaceutical company (among its brands are Enervon, Alaxan, Myra). It has been hosting the Run United, Bike United and Tri United events since 2010.

RUNNER Jaymie Pizarro

The three-leg Run United will be on March 4 (registration closed), June 17, and Sept. 16; the Tri United triathlon will be on April 14-15 in Batangas, June 30-July 1 in Bataan, and Nov. 10-11; and the first-ever Run United Philippine Marathon will be on Oct. 28.

Registration fee is from P350 to P900, and part of the proceeds will go to the Gawad Kalusugan (the health program of Gawad Kalinga) and Hero Foundation. Organizers said joining fee covers logistics cost.

Unilab Active Health head Alex Panlilio said Run United focuses on gathering family members of different fitness levels; that’s why it has a 500-meter dash for kids, and more competitive 5, 10 and 21K distances. “We call it a ‘family run’ because we believe that if someone in the family is into fitness, he can influence the others. And running also provides family bonding time.”

Panlilio recently did his first triathlon. He considers himself a beginner.

“I was into basketball when I was younger, but there came a time when when I let myself go,” he said. “I tried running 5K and I couldn’t even get past a kilometer! That’s when I decided to train.”

Triathlete Ani de Leon-Brown

Since running calls for a lifestyle change, Panlilio said it is also important to surround yourself with people who are into it.

Find a way

You are never too young or too old to get active; it is a matter of getting started and keeping your activities exciting.

Kids can be “programmed” at an early age, said Ani, while it’s more of mental and physical conditioning for adults. “I know it is very hard to get up very in the morning, so it is best to join a group so that you can follow a training time and routine.”

Ani, also a coach and trainer, said you have to set realistic goals, then work on how to sustain it. Her tip: Work around your schedule, find time within your work and family life, identify goal rate, and slowly build up your runs around it. Prioritize. Being too busy is not an excuse, because “if you want it hard enough you will find a way.”

Pizarro, a mother of two and publisher of The Bull Runner Magazine, said running is a convenient way to get fit, especially for multitasking women. “You can squeeze in outdoor runs in the morning. If it’s too hot in the daytime, you can run on the treadmill; at night, you can run with friends. It is very flexible. Make sure running won’t be hassle so that you wouldn’t easily give up.”

And while running complements your life, you should never forget to have fun.

“I can be very competitive,” said Pizarro. “So my weekday runs are fast, while my weekend runs with friends are more relaxed. We don’t worry about time  and personal records, just what we’ll be having for breakfast afterwards.”

Pizarro is organizing the Bull Runner Dream Marathon on March 18.

Avoid injuries

CYCLIST Raul Cuevas

Ready to run? Now keep these in mind to avoid injuries.

Preparation is key, said Dan, a 15-time Ironman finisher and former coach of the Philippine Triathlon team. Follow a progression and build your speed slowly. Don’t overdo it.

Del Rosario said passion is good, but you don’t have to be too aggressive. Start slow. Your initial goal should be to finish a 3K run-walk until you can run the whole length. Do this until you can finish 5K without walking. Also, find out your foot type (flat-footed, high-arch, neutral) and invest in proper running shoes. His RunRio race company organizes all Unilab Active Health events.

Visit and for registration details.

Leave a comment

Filed under Athletes, Programs, Selected Features, Unilab Active Health

Timex Multisport Team 2011 Highlights Video

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!

Leave a comment

Filed under Athletes, Photos, Selected Features, Timex

XTerra Putik Pare Race: Fun in the Mud

The Xterra Putik Pare Event held yesterday in Nuvali, Sta Rosa Laguna was something I had been looking forward to watching all year as I joined the race last year and had heaps of fun…dirty fun, as the name connotes, but good fun nonetheless. Participants of Putik Pare basically have to come in pairs- one does a bike+run, while the other does a run+bike, all off-road, after which they run to the finish together.

Pia and Belle, my girlfriends who came fresh from their XTerra World Champs Maui experience were joining the race and I thought it would be cool to cheer for them in the mud pit- a trademark of the Putik Pare race.

My husband Dan whom I found out does not really have a clue about mountain biking (sorry baby, just an observation) decided to join at the last minute too after deplaning from his Taiwan 70.3 just a week before.  Good thing Neil Catiil from the RP Tri Team agreed to be his teammate, and thanks to the loaner Elsworth MTB from Tyrone Regaliza and sponsored entry from TIMEX they were all set!

On race morning I donned one of my remaining stretchy Adidas Climacool shirts which still fit my bulging belly so I was prepared to support/ heckle all the racers. I thought it was very nice to go to an event wherein triathletes are not so pressured about their performance/ PRs…just out to have a good time with buddies!

I was happy to see Polo Tri teens Marc Altura and Javi Ocampo, whom I have seen blossom into the formidable athletes they are now from coaching them in the SuperTriKids and IronKids squads, looking game and raring to get down and dirty for something different than their normal sprint distance races.

I ended up spectating with good friends Alex Bok of  TBB, David Almendral and Ton Gatmaitan of Gatorade.  They had also decided to set up shop by the mud pit and cheer for friends. The mud pit design this year was more watery than that of last year–but longer.  It was a good place to watch as this was the last leg they had to do before heading to the finish line.

One by one the pairs came in, and it was interesting to see how they maneuvered the brown waters–marching, trudging, sloshing–some even swam, using different strokes at that. I conclude that backstroke is most effective as demonstrated by Noel Salvador!

The eventual overall winners for the 3 categories were:

Congratulations to XTerra Phil/ Sunrise Events Inc led by Fred Uytengsu, Guy Concepcion, Princess Galura, and the Technical Crew of Neville Manaois and Jeremy Go for a very well organized race.  Hope I can get my feet dirty again for next year’s event!

Leave a comment

Filed under Adidas, Athletes, Friends, Race Report, Timex

Happy for Dan!

Special mention to my husband Dan Brown in IM 70.3 Taiwan article, so happy that he is on his way back to recovery and racing decently again 🙂 Congratulations to the winners Chris Mc Cormack and Michelle Wu, and hats off to the organizers!


Filed under Athletes, Family

Bike United 2011, Subic

The Bike United in Subic last weekend was a tough 3 day race, but all the racers seemed to be prepared for the 2 Road Races, Team Time Trial, and Individual Time Trial that they had to go through.  It was great to be a spectator this year, having always been a supporter of the annual event organized by Raul Cuevas and Co.  What I liked best was the fact that there were lots of women who joined, hanging out with girlfriends makes everything so much more enjoyable!  And they held their own against the men too 🙂 Keep it up biker chicks!!!

Leave a comment

Filed under Athletes, Biking

Super Sprint Triathlon Relay Events a new trend in Asia

Asian Triathlon Championships Team Events

Team Relay Events which consist of really short distances are the exciting new addition to the upcoming Asian Triathlon Championships this weekend.  

The teams are composed of 4 members: 2 males and 2 females. Each athlete completes a 250m swim, 7km ride and 2km run one after the other. This is a new format that was introduced in the Singapore Youth Olympics last year, and was included in the  ITU Team Triathlon World Championships in Lausanne this year. 

You can see the related articles when you click on these links:

Our Pinoy Relay Team will consist of Nikko Huelgas, Neil Catiil, Lc Langit and Kim Mangrobang.  Tomorrow they will be racing the regular individual Standard Distance formats and on Saturday they will participate in the relays. Pray for them guys!


Team Relay Event in IronKids Nuvali October 30 2011

At Ironkids we have decided to include our own super sprint triathlon relay format as well, not just because it is trendy but also because it is a very good chance for your little ones to get into the sport. A lot of kids want to join but for one reason or another can only do one or two out of the three sports of swimming, biking, and running.  

Our Individual Events will push through as always but after all these are done we will have the Team Relay Event.  Those who have raced in the Individual Events are also welcome to jump in again and be part of a team!  


  1. Team of 3: 1 Swimmer , 1 Biker , 1 Runner (Mixed, may be male or female)
  2. Team members do 3 lots of the following:
    Swimmer swims 50m, Biker cycles 3k, Runner Runs 1k
  3. On the 3rd round the Runner goes to the finish line.
  4. All team members must be between 6-14 years old.
  5. Top 5 Teams will be awarded prizes.
  6. IronKids Relay Race will be held after the IronKids Individual Races. Participants from the Individual Races may register for the Relay Event as well.

Schedule of races: 6-8, 6am/ 9-10, 6:30am/ 11-12, 7:15am/ 13-14, 8:15am/ Team Relay, 9:30am

Leave a comment

Filed under Athletes, Coaching and Training, IronKids, SuperKids, Triathlon for kids

A new year, a new life, a new team…

I am on the other side of the world right now, and when this happens I have this rare chance to stop and reflect on my life from an outsider’s perspective…sort of, as I am removed from my usual routine.  I guess there are some significant changes I have been going through, including but not exclusive to: getting married, moving out of the city, and starting the season with a new team.

Sometimes I wonder how I ever got so lucky–blessed with good health, family, friends, work that I actually love.  Now I have the chance to be part of  Timex Multisport Team and all I can say is that IT IS AWESOME!!! I showed up at camp a rookie and not knowing anyone in the team except for kiwi Keegan Williams but he wasn’t even able to make it to NJ as he was racing (he won 1st overall btw!).  Before meeting everyone I had this insecurity of not being good enough for such a solid group of athletes and a real winning team…but I was reminded by Tristan and the other girls at camp that we were chosen to be Timex Ambassadors for various reasons, athletic performance being only one of them, so I relaxed a bit more.  Timex took such good care of us (i.e. we were well-fed) and the venues we had were topnotch…Timex Performance Center and NY Giants Stadium–seriously!

Leaving the camp, I wrote an email to everyone in the group, wherein I said:

….I would just like to say thank you to Timex and the entire team for such an incredible weekend!  I must say that I was not really sure what to expect coming here and on my looong flight back home i hope the passengers beside me will be asleep as I will be smiling to myself the whole time (this, and maybe inspecting some of my swag) recounting the whole camp experience in my mind.

I am very happy to be a new member of this family, and if any one of you ever considers racing in my part of the world, you have a homestay with us. Have a safe trip back home everyone!
Love Ani

Special thanks to Gemma, Avi, and Jewel of Timex Philippines for helping me get in the team and supporting me always. And to Princess and Neville + et al for taking care of the Ironkids Run Race on my behalf and to my sister Sinag and Waya for taking care of wedding stuff while I was away. Pasalubong for you guys!  And to Dan–on my way home soon, promise!

To learn more about the team, visit:


Filed under Athletes, Coaching and Training, Timex, Travel

ONE SPORT Magazine Cover and Article


Filed under Athletes, Coaching and Training, Fitness First, Photos, Pinay In Action, Selected Features

Ironman World Championships 2010 Athletes Parade

Leave a comment

Filed under Athletes, Coaching and Training, Events, Hawaiian Airlines