Social Square at Waterway Point

Social Square Waterway Point

I was at Waterway Point today for their Grand Opening celebrations, and decided to have lunch at Social Square for two reasons. One: I had such an awesome experience at their sister company ‘MOF Danro‘ at Bugis Junction earlier this month, and two, I like that Social Square has the same lunch promotions which include a free drink, free salad, and free dessert. Unfortunately, that’s where the similarities end.

The Jewel Sashimi Juu that you see in the picture above was served with the sashimi components placed haphazardly. It did not look very appetizing to me, even though the taste was good. Even the soft serve ice cream looked prettier than the main. (>_<)

Compare this with the same item – Jewel Sashimi Juu – that I had at MOF Danro:

MOF Danro Bugis Junction

The one served at MOF Danro was GORGEOUS. To MOF: please look into your QC standards across outlets.:) The Jewel Sashimi Juu served at Waterway Point today was rather disappointing. And no, the outlet wasn’t busy when I visited today. It was rather deserted. Most of the people were queuing for free movie tickets given out by the mall. LOL. The beautiful sashimi juu I had at Bugis was during peak lunch hour when the restaurant was pretty full. So I really cannot tell what’s happening here.

I guess it all boils down to whether or not your employees take pride in their work. Quite simply, I did not see that commitment to excellence today. Pity. Social Square is so near to my home. Haiz.

~

Read more of my reviews about Waterway Point:

  1. 6 Reasons Why You Should Visit Waterway Point
  2. The FREE Indoor Playground At Waterway Point: Exact Location And Opening Hours
  3. Food Review: BurgerUP
  4. Food Review: Rong Hua Bak Kut Teh
  5. Waterway Point’s Shaw Cinema: 500 Free Tickets Per Day During Open House Period
  6. A Guide to Waterway Point’s East and West Wings
  7. Food Review: The French Table
  8. 5 Best Value-For-Money Restaurants and Eateries in Waterway Point
  9. Food Review: Miam Miam
  10. Food Review: Buddy Hoagies
  11. Food Review: The Coffee House
  12. Food Review: Zakka Modern Thai plus a second review here.
  13. FREE Pizza: Pizza Hut
  14. Food Review: London Fat Duck
  15. Food Review: Cedele

Book Review: Elon Musk – How The Billionaire CEO of SpaceX and Tesla Is Shaping Our Future

Elon Musk book

Before reading this book, I had no idea who Elon Musk is. Apparently he is very, very famous. If you know who Steve Jobs and Bill Gates are, you’d have to know Elon. But to borrow a line from Rui En, that is, if Elon asked me “Do you know who I am?”, I’d definitely say I have no clue.😀 But I’m already a fan of one of his companies, even though I didn’t know he’s a co-founder! Haha!

Long story short, he’s actually a co-founder of PayPal, among other companies. He has a net worth of approximately USD13.5 billion. And what is probably his most radical idea is the one about having a human colony on the planet Mars. Like, seriously, men are from Mars? He has had two wives. He had six sons with his first wife; his very first child died not long after being born. As for the second wife, they got married, then divorced, then got married again, and yes, got divorced again. Simply put, Elon Musk is not your average guy.

After reading this book, anyone who had wanted to compare Elon with Steve Jobs or Bill Gates will have other ideas, because Elon is clearly in a league of his own.

Here’s how he is very different from most of us:

  1. He was likely born a genius. He could concentrate intensely on a single task, had a “compulsion to read” and had a photographic memory. (However, he was also bullied relentlessly in school.)
  2. He has a maniacal work ethic. He thinks that if there’s a way of getting nutrients without sitting down for a meal, he’d take it, so he would not have to waste any time that he could otherwise use on work. He even pees quickly.
  3. He doesn’t necessarily believe in crafting a career out of your passion. Even though he has a huge interest in video games, he wanted to pursue a career in an area he could have a “big impact”, i.e. something that would change the world. He challenges us to think about ‘What industry can you disrupt?’
  4. While most people struggle to build up one successful business, he’s had many successes. Among them are Zip2, PayPal, SpaceX, Tesla, and SolarCity.
  5. He turns conventional wisdom on its head. In 2014, Tesla announced that it would open-source all its patents. The company was essentially encouraging more competition.
  6. He believes in lowering costs by making everything in-house if possible. Yes, that includes even building rockets themselves!
  7. He’s been through a lot. Besides bullying in school, there’s also his tough upbringing, a coup in one of his companies, he nearly died from malaria, his first son’s sudden death at ten weeks old, his first wife’s blog which became a PR nightmare for him, and how his companies had once been on the brink of bankruptcy and he had to sell prized possessions to generate cash.
  8. He’d rather die than fail. He told one venture capitalist: “My mentality is that of a samurai. I would rather commit seppuku than fail.”
  9. He’s an unusual boss. He would play video games with employees and trash them at it.
  10. He eliminates obstacles. If you’re his employee and if your glasses keep getting in the way of your work, he’ll pay for your Lasik treatment.
  11. He redefines “micro-management”. You are in real danger of losing your job, when your boss takes over for a week or two just to see if you are as indispensable to the company as you say, and then you realize he can do your job better than you can.
  12. He’s REALLY hands-on. He interviews just about everyone, from the janitors to the technicians. I wonder if he has just 24 hours a day, like the rest of us.
  13. He uses more of his brain. Co-workers marvel at “his abilities to absorb incredible quantities of information with near-flawless recall.”
  14. He comes up with jaw-dropping ideas, e.g. reuseable rockets, electric cars that can be recharged for free (and even having robots replace battery packs, and autopilot functions for your car).

~

To me, it seems like Elon Musk has led the lives of multiple men, not just one. The way he manages large companies at the same time is just incredible. Without discounting Steve Jobs’ awesome creations, I’d have to say that Elon’s mission is just mind-blowing. And based on what he’s doing, I do think we have a very real chance of exploring other planets even before we are done with exploring Earth. And with global warming and its horrendous effects, I have to admit that yes, Earth might one day not be conducive for human life. And we’ll have no choice but to check out other planets if we want to survive.

I highly recommend that you check out this book by Ashlee Vance. He must have done so much work to put together this 382-page book about Elon Musk, especially since the latter had refused to cooperate at the start. LOL. Before I read the book, I knew nothing about Elon. Now, I’m in awe.😀

Waterway Point’s Grand Opening… Again?

Was scrolling through my Facebook newsfeed this morning when I saw something which got me rather surprised. Waterway Point is giving out 500 pairs of movie tickets today, as part of their Official Opening celebrations. Thing is… didn’t the mall have its Opening Day in January, some 3+ months ago? How erm… strange. Anyway, since there are free movie tickets up for grabs, I decided to walk over and get some. LOL.

Tah-dah… after queuing for perhaps, 30 minutes?😀😄

Waterway Point Grand Opening free movie tickets

The queue was really long. But since the mall had generously arranged for 500 pairs of tickets to be given away, I think just about everyone who wanted a ticket managed to get it.:)

Waterway Point free movie tickets queue

Elsewhere within the mall, there were also food samples being distributed. I joined the (very short) queue for free coffee just to get a taste of what this “Traditional Hainan Coffee” is all about.

Waterway Point Koufu free coffee

It tastes pretty good actually. Wished my coffee-loving BF was there with me. He’d be over-the-moon at receiving a free cup of good coffee. Haha!

Waterway Point coffee

By the way, it’s not the first time that Waterway Point is giving out free movie tickets. It has been done before. But I didn’t manage to get any in January, as they had all been given out by the time I got to the venue. For today’s giveaway, I think it might not have been widely publicized. You’ll have to be a fan of their facebook page to be in the know. *hint hint*

Pompompurin Cafe @ Orchard Central – Cute Food, Decent Taste

pompompurin cafe chicken curry

It’s the Pompompurin Cafe’s Opening Day today, and I popped by to check out this new cafe that is located at Orchard Central. I think it will certainly help draw the crowds to the mall. If you don’t already know, Pompompurin is a Sanrio character that is supposed to be a golden retriever. Ha!

In the picture above, you see the ‘Pompompurin Coconut Milk Chicken Curry’ (S$17.99). It’s the typical Japanese curry that is not at all spicy, and it looks so attractive that I think kids will LOVE it!

There was already a queue before 11am, and the line only got longer and longer during lunchtime. Customers were made to wait even though there were unoccupied tables within the cafe, so as to let the kitchen staff slowly get into the groove.

pompompurin cafe orchard central

Once you enter the cafe, you won’t be complaining as the staff are very courteous and the decor is pretty neat. You might even have Pompompurin seated across from you:

pompompurin cafe

And you’ll definitely want to get a photo taken with Pompompurin and friends right in the middle of the cafe:

Pompompurin cafe

For similar themed cafes, the food is usually bordering-on-awful, however, I enjoyed the meal today at Pompompurin Cafe!:) I had the Taco Rice In A Cup Of Frienship (S$19.99) and found it to be slightly spicy and really quite tasty. It even comes with nachos. LOL.

Pompompurin Cafe Taco Rice

We ordered the Mango Soda (S$11.99) to share…

Pompompurin Cafe Mango Soda

*Check out that super cute coaster!😀 I bet many people will take them home!😀

And here’s the placemat. Plus, the cafe serves free iced / warm water!:)

pompompurin cafe placemats

For dessert, we had the ‘Bagel’s Special Pancake Tower’ (S$21.99) which comes with a free mug. You can get a brand new mug at the cashier upon payment. *And no, the mugs are not for sale. You can only get one when you purchase selected menu items which come with free mugs.😉

pompompurin cafe pancake tower

I was quite surprised that a new cafe would be charging GST, because my impression is that only businesses that have an annual turnover of over S$1 million would be charging GST. I suppose this cafe is owned by a parent company that has other businesses in Singapore.

This meal which consisted of 2 mains, 1 drink and 1 dessert, after tax, cost S$84.70. Quite pricey, I’d say. But good for a date with a loved one. You’ll also get your money’s worth with all the pictures you are going to take here.

Pompompurin Cafe is located at #04-08 Orchard Central. Tel: 6509 8672.

Descendants Of The Sun Episode 16 Part 2

Descendants Of The Sun ep 16

[ Picture from Descendants Of The Sun facebook page ]

*Update* I decided to include the remaining bits at the end of this post instead of crafting a ‘Part 3’.😀

Truly busy day today. Such that I am not done watching Descendants Of The Sun episode 16 yet. But here’s Part Two of the synopsis for this episode, which I’m uploading while on the move. LOL. I hope I get to complete watching the episode and uploading the rest of the ep synopsis tonight!:)

Episode 16 Synopsis (Part Two) 

Dr Kang and Big Boss go fishing (remember the time he went alone? :D), they catch a fish and camp overnight. Later, he tells her that he’s going on a mission – something about “escorting a VIP”. It turns out that the VIPs are actually the girl group Red Velvet who put on a performance for the Special Forces. Big Boss waves a placard, Seo dances while holding a balloon, and the whole thing is recorded and televised(?) Dr Kang is furious, and she goes on TV and announces that she doesn’t have a boyfriend in what is surely a tit-for-tat measure. Big Boss is promoted – he becomes a Squadron Leader – while Dr Kang is the “most famous doctor in the hospital” (She walks into a seminar room asking “Do you all know who I am?” And this is kind of funny, especially with what happened to a Singaporean actress recently) Myeong Ju and Seo meet the Commander; Seo says he can’t leave the army. The Commander gives them both his blessings. Fatima sends Dr Kang a Christmas card, and meanwhile Dr Chi Hoon gets a video from the “Blackey” kid, and they fail once again to find out the kid’s real name. After Chi Hoon is done using Dr Song’s laptop, Nurse Ha takes over and finds the secret folder. Inside are her pictures from her teenage years to when she is in her thirties. Dr Song confesses his love, and the two will likely end up together after Nurse Ha is done repaying all the money she has loaned from him. Dr Kang names her car ‘Big Boss’ and at the car wash, she ends up spraying the real Big Boss with water accidentally. During a meal at the canteen, Myeong Ju and Seo end up kissing amongst all the soldiers. Dr Daniel and Ye Hwa are getting married in Vancouver, Canada, and have sent invites and plane tickets over. Dr Kang and Big Boss return to the beach with the shipwreck, and there’s (of course) more kissing. At Dr Daniel’s wedding reception, it appears that Seo has caught the bridal bouquet and he kept staring at it thereafter. (LOL) Just as Dr Chi Hoon is announcing that the show has come to an end, someone runs in to say hysterically that a volcano has just erupted. (In Canada?!) So the show comes to an end with everyone getting ready for some action – Myeong Ju rubs off her lipstick, Nurse Ha pins up her hair, Dr Kang prepares to ruin her heels again, etc.

~

There will be 3 more special episodes after this, so don’t get too upset that this is the end of the kdrama.:)

Descendants Of The Sun Episode 16 Part 1

Descendants Of The Sun episode 16

[ Picture from Descendants Of The Sun facebook page ]

Descendants Of The Sun is the only drama that I’ll watch even when there are no English subtitles and I cannot understand the language the actors are using. LOL! I watched episode 16 yesterday evening via YouTube where one kind soul was streaming it ‘live’. So I kind of followed the show and know how it ends. But nothing beats having English subtitles.:) Only done with half of ep 16 at the moment as I need to rush off to work but I’m including the synopsis for the first half of ep 16 below…

Episode 16 Synopsis (Part One) 

Dr Kang is at a loss – she cannot quite handle the reappearance of Big Boss. She alternates from pushing him away and weeping (“I don’t need you. I’m gonna be a nun”) and telling him she missed and loves him. It snows for the first time in 100 years in Urk, and Seo walks towards Myeong Ju in the snow. His arm is in a sling, and he tells her that he never wants to be separated from her again. They kiss. Ki Beom is not a Platoon Sergeant and even he weeps when he sees Seo. Myeong Ju returns Seo’s dog tags to him, and even helps him shave his face. It turns out that Big Boss and Seo were captured by the militia who locked them up in a prison cell for some 150 or 155 days. They were rescued by the North Korean Special Forces solder, Anh, whom Big Boss had helped previously. Dr Kang has fruit prepared for Big Boss’s (supposed) death anniversary memorial. And the fact that he reappears on this day gets her worried; she asks a passing medical officer whether he can see Big Boss. He replies in the affirmative. Then she receives a video call from her colleagues at the hospital in Korea. They see Big Boss eating the fruit at the ‘altar’ right behind Dr Kang and they get a fright, thinking they’ve seen Big Boss’ ghost back on his death anniversary. Dr Song hilariously falls off his seat, and stays on the ground. Seo and Big Boss are tasked to write reports “as thick as school textbooks” upon their return. As can be expected, Big Boss leaves this task to Seo, whom he once called the “Tolstoy” when it comes to writing reports.😀

~

I’ll put together Part 2 of the synopsis for episode 16 later. Stay tuned!:) Can’t believe I’m typing this in the back of a taxi, and the song that is being played right now over the radio is from this show too (“… you are my everything…”)😀😀

*Update* Read Part Two here.

Tsukeru Shabu Shabu @ Marina Square: Lunch Promotions

Tsukeru Shabu Shabu Marina Square

I had a most enjoyable lunch this afternoon at Tsukeru Shabu Shabu located at Marina Square, within the Emporium Shokuhin. Fans of Japanese food will likely know of this Emporium, which is pretty amazing – there’s a grocer, fine dining, shabu shabu, sushi, yakiniku, cafe & bakery, etc. Tsukeru is located at #01-18. I went for the lunch buffet today and I thought it was great value for money!

I love the kurobuta pork belly there! There’s also a selection of vegetables, carbs (I like the Japanese glass noodles), salmon, beef, scallops, etc. We picked only our favorite items, as you can see in this picture below:

Tsukeru Shabu Shabu buffet

As for the MSG-free soup bases, I ordered the tom yum while he had ginseng chicken broth. We had one little ‘pot’ each, and the soup base was refilled really quickly by the attentive staff. Now, if you’re dining with your partner, go ahead and order one ‘spicy’ soup base and one ‘mild’ one – it’ll be a very nice balance if you’re sharing.:)

And there’s a whole range of sauces to choose from. I like to mix a couple of items to make a tasty sauce… so go ahead and experiment:

Tsukeru Shabu Shabu Emporium Shokuhin

I’ve found that their homemade spicy sauce + minced garlic + spring onions really ROCKS!

Tsukeru Shabu Shabu sauces

Mix it up before dipping food into the sauce!:)

I’d also just like to add here that the staff at Tsukeru are really good at customer service. I’d like to commend Nelson for being nothing short of fabulous today. It was a joy chatting with him, and I also saw him being very helpful to two angmoh customers who didn’t quite know which sauce to pick – he made a special blend for them.:) Nelson also came round to ask if we enjoyed the meal, helped me with signing up for their (free) membership, and also encouraged me to bring my pals to Tsukeru. Quite an asset to the company!😀 If I’m setting up a restaurant, I’d want to hire staff just like him!

I was also pleasantly surprised at how the drinks are served ‘free flow’. You can order Coke or Sprite at S$4 a glass and get it refilled as many times as you want. Or you can go for Hot Ocha or Iced Ocha at S$2 each (also with free refills). Really good value even though the place looks ‘atas’!:)

I’d like to return for the Set Lunch one day:

Tsukeru Shabu Shabu Set Lunch

Prices start from S$17.80:) Psst… the Seafood Platter Set comes with really big tiger prawns!

If you’re at Marina Square and want a satisfying and very yummy meal, do pop by Tsukeru (especially on weekdays). I loved how it wasn’t crowded today so we could have a leisurely meal before a movie. Ahhhh! Life is really good.:)

Descendants Of The Sun Episode 15

Descendants Of The Sun Episode 15

[ Picture from Descendants Of The Sun facebook page ]

This is probably the most brutal episode in Descendants Of The Sun . First you’ll cry your eyes out, then you’ll realize at the end of the episode that you cried for nothing. Argh. I wish the producers of this drama would stop that he’s-dead-oops-no-he’s-not-hey-he’s-dead kind of storytelling. Just keep the character alive or kill him off completely ok? It’s not funny.😛 Haiz. I hope they get married in the final episode.😀

Episode 15 Synopsis:

Big Boss is listening to Dr Kang’s will again via headphones, and he’s seated in a hospital wheelchair. When Dr Kang finds out what he’s listening to, she (accidentally) lets go of the wheelchair, which rolls down a slope, and ‘crashes’ at the end.😀 Seo asks Myeong Ju out for a meal because she looks too thin. Both want to be the one to leave the army. Big Boss appears at Dr Kang’s home with beer, places candles everywhere so she’ll look pretty from every angle, and she later realizes he used the final card from Pres. Mubarat on the helicopter to save her from Argus. Gi Beom sits for his qualification exam. The whole Alpha Team shows up to support him. The team then goes on a combined operations mission for 3 months. The Commander tears up Seo’s application for discharge from the army; tells him to come back safely. Seo leaves his ‘dog tag’ at Myeong Ju’s door. Big Boss bids Dr Kang farewell and tells her that he’ll be off the grid. Even so, she sends him message after message just to talk about her day. While waiting for another chopper, Big Boss is shot from the back. Seo is shot too. Then a missile(?) causes an explosion. Alpha Team’s remaining 3 members report back to say that the bodies weren’t found. Big Boss’ dad collects his dog tag and is devastated. Dr Kang reads the will Big Boss left; Myeong Ju refuses to read the one from Seo. The army will announce that the duo were killed in a car accident during training; want Dr Kang to sign a Non Disclosure Agreement. Eun Ji pesters Dr Kang about switching to more expensive medication so her uncle can profit from the purchase. Myeong Ju returns to Urk while Dr Kang goes to the Albanian refugee camp; she continues to send messages to Big Boss. Daniel protests at the airport regarding patents for necessary vaccines. At the end of the episode, Big Boss reappears, looking a little worse for wear.

~

I have a message for the producers: stop toying with my heart! Oh man. Actually this time it was pretty expected. Since no bodies were found, viewers had reason to believe that the duo would survive. Hehe! So I guess we’ll find out in the next episode whether Seo lives as well.

More than love stories, I think the drama really drives home the message that more needs to be done in the medical field. Medicines are not being produced because there are patents involved. And those who need the medicines or vaccines most cannot get access to them because they are unavailable or priced out of reach. Even for the wealthy, there are medical professionals / businessmen who want to raise prices so they can earn (much) more. Remember the real-life example of the man who wanted to raise the price of HIV treatment drugs by 5000%? ‘Descendants Of The Sun’ isn’t kidding. There really are people who are like that. Hopefully, Karma gets them all in the end.

I wonder what’s left for episode 16. Will Big Boss and Dr Kang get married? Will Seo survive and get back together with Myeong Ju again? The lucky folks in Korea will find out tonight, while the rest of us will do so tomorrow.😀

Book Review: Kevin Tsai’s Way Of Speaking (蔡康永的说话之道)

Kevin Tsai book

I’ve enjoyed Kevin Tsai’s and Dee Hsu’s hosting of 康熙來了(Kang Xi Lai Le) – too bad the show has ended after more than a decade on television. As Dee has frequently referred to Kevin’s book, I decided to locate a copy and attempt to read all those traditional Chinese characters. If you know of the existence of a version in simplified Mandarin or better yet, a translated version in English, please let me know. My speed-reading skills have been severely hampered by the way the book is presented – just like Chinese comics, back to front, and read from right to left, the exact opposite of what I’m used to.

In this post, I’ll share some of the learning points I’ve acquired from (slowly) reading his book. I’m reading slowly not by choice, obviously. Haha! Do note that some phrases and thoughts just lose much of their original intended meaning when translated into English. Take the title of the book, for instance, <蔡康永的说话之道>, which can only loosely and inaccurately be translated into ‘Kevin Tsai’s Way Of Speaking’ (which I found on Amazon.com).

Also, how does one explain what Kevin meant by “说话之道” versus “说话之術”, which he claims has very different connotations? In any case, I’ll do my best here. Apologies in advance if my interpretations of his work fall short. Mandarin’s not exactly my strong suit but I do love the language – it’s actually quite beautiful.:)

By the way, this (speaking skills) book has made Kevin one of the richest Chinese writers, and according to the website china.org.cn, helped him earn over US$700,000 in royalty income. Can you say “WOW”?😀 Not that he needs the money, obviously, because the talkshow already pays very well, and Kevin is from a rich (elite) family. I respect him a fair bit because he’s not just learned, but he’s also courageous. He has come out of the closet years ago and said he is gay. I think more gay people should follow in his footsteps. If you want society to accept who you are, and the lifestyle you lead, and not discriminate against gay people, then you’ll have to OWN this fact (that you are gay), and just proudly state it as a matter of fact and show you have nothing to hide. Step out and say “I’m gay. So?” and you’ll find that people (even the critics) will have to just start minding their own business.

And I might be wrong, but I think that Kevin’s sexuality allows him the freedom of understanding both ‘worlds’ – the male worldview, and the more feminine / emotional / sensitive ‘world’ that is usually associated with women. Thus, he seems to always know what are the right things to say. For instance, when a woman asks a man whether she is looking fatter these days, the man might have to pause and wonder if she’s asking him a trick question, what her response might be if he’s honest with her, and what he’ll have to say in order to get away with lying. For someone like Kevin, the answer is almost always very prompt and a straightforward denial “Of course not. You’re so slim! Why would you even ask that question?!” and the woman ends up feeling really happy. Yes, we’re superficial like that. Most of us just want to hear only the good things.😀

Here are some learning points from the book (It’s Book One. There’s a Book Two out as well)…

  1. Consider what the listener wants to hear, not what you wish to say.
  2. You are what you say.
  3. Dee Hsu: “There’s a fine line between being yourself and being rude. Give genuine praise, not unwelcome criticism”.
  4. Pass on praise from other people, instead of trying too hard yourself.
  5. Your words define you. For instance, would you rather be seen as a naggy housewife or a kawaii girlfriend?
  6. Likeability is more important than looks. For instance, what would you do if you are invited to a gathering with friends and dinner involves Japanese food which you do not enjoy? Remember: the reason for your friends’ existence is not to serve you.
  7. Music is better than forced conversation, and it also changes the mood.
  8. Know how to “lose” and hand unnecessary victories to others. It is better to lose an argument than to be hated for winning one. Don’t force an apology or admittance of defeat from someone. Maintain love between the couple; don’t make a fuss over winning or losing an argument.
  9. See people as equals.
  10. Maintain eye contact in moderation.
  11. Don’t obsess over the meal; have a good conversation.
  12. Get unstuck; change the topic.
  13. Concrete questions lead to effortless answers. Be specific in your questioning. Ask about a topic that you have something interesting to share about too.
  14. People want to find others who understand them.
  15. Everyone wants to talk about themselves. Be a good listener. See if you can avoid using “I” and “me” in your conversation. Indulge your friends – let them say all that they want to.

I’m not done with the book yet. So I’ll update this blog again later. It’s so much easier to blog in English than to read a book in Chinese. Muahaha!:)

*p/s: I’m not sure why Kevin uses an umbrella as a prop for his book cover shoot. Perhaps the answer will be revealed later in the book.😉

RUN 350: How I Ran A Half-Marathon With Barely Any Training

Run 350

Today’s RUN 350 was especially memorable for me. It’s my 9th race so far, and my first half-marathon. I’ve been rather busy lately and haven’t trained for the race, so I did what I knew how to do, i.e. read a book on running, scored some tips and used them today. *Of course, I do not advocate your trying the same thing because I was lucky it worked for me today, and I cannot guarantee what will happen if you attempt to do the same.😛

Let me just share about how I’m feeling right now. I did take some precautions such as putting on plasters on my feet even before the race started BUT it’s still not 100% foolproof. For one, I still ended up with one blister in an awkward place; the 2nd toe on my left foot. Apparently the 2nd toe had been rubbing up against the big toe, and a blister formed on the side. How weird! Otherwise, I have no other blisters. The chafing, though, is horrible. My chest felt like it was on fire during the shower. I think my sports bra might have been a little too snug so it cut into my skin. Argh.

Interestingly, the race went very well for me and him. Yes, our legs are sore right now, but we sustained zero injury even though we had not trained for this half marathon. What I did was:

  1. Regular breaks. After the first 30 minutes of running, I stopped for a 5 minute (walking) break. Thereafter, I took 5-minute breaks after every 15 minutes of running. It REALLY helps!
  2. Instead of stopping at all the hydration points, I had my own (squeeze) water bottle with me so I could take sips as and when I felt a little tired or thirsty. I’d filled the bottle with 100plus😀 The area around each hydration point is very wet and littered with paper cups so it’s best to avoid it if you have your own bottle with you. You won’t want to slip and hurt yourself.
  3. We did stretching exercises before, during and after the race.
  4. We went for a massage after the race. It definitely helped.
  5. Mindset: I was there not to win the race, but to complete the race. So even when people were running past me while I was on my scheduled 5-minute walking break, I honored that break and did not feel the need to compete. We made it to the finish line hand-in-hand and yes, 2hr 45min is not a timing to shout about, but hey, we did it without sprains, pulled muscles or worse, any injury that required an ambulance ride.😀

There were some interesting sights during the race. For one, there were THREE people who donned shark costumes for the run. The first guy I met was perspiring profusely. I didn’t get to see the other two. Or maybe I’d mistaken them for the first one I saw. Running a half marathon is very difficult in itself. But running one while wearing a costume that covers most parts of your body except for your face and feet must feel like torture. But those guys did it to send a message loud and clear: stop consuming sharks fin.

I also spotted other runners in Captain America and Spiderman outfits. But what was really mindboggling was one female runner’s tee with an image of a hand showing the middle finger. It IS kind of offensive when she’s running just in front of you. But… what to do?

Towards the end of my race, one male runner took off his shoes, and told the race marshal that he did so because of blisters. Ahhh… thankfully I’d already put plasters on the back of my heels and on the sides of my feet where blisters tend to form.

Running Medals

If you haven’t already attempted a half marathon, I’d highly recommend that you try one, assuming you’re in good health and have been exercising regularly. It’s truly a test of willpower and discipline. And yes, please train before you go for one, ok?:)