This Ramadan, Keep Moving

Just about a week to go until Ramadan, in sha Allah!

Every year, the period leading up to Ramadan is flooded with a lot of nervicitement (yes it’s a new word coined for moments of nervous excitement alright!) with discussions ranging from resolution and goal setting to menu planning.

During this time we make a conscious effort in realigning our spiritual well being, spending time in prayer, supplication learning and reciting the Holy Qur’an. While this remains the main focus of the month, we still have  to carry on with our daily chores and activities – and this whether we like it or not – includes maintaining our fitness levels.

In the past, I, like many others, absolved myself of any fitness related activities during Ramadan, simply because of the fears of dehydration, fatigue and hanger, which ultimately would take away from the spirit of the month. However, while making up for some missed fasts this past month, I trained and it dispelled all the notions I had built up in my head. In fact, I felt energized, Alhamdulillah!

I am a moderately active person with average fitness levels. Between work and school runs, I manage to train 3-4 days a week during which I do a mix of weight training and running.  So here I am sharing learnings from my own experience – a beginner’s perspective if you like – to encourage you all to keep moving this Ramadan!

When do I train?

I choose to train 60-90 mins before Iftar for about 30-45 minutes. While many suggest it is better to train after iftar or before suhoor, I go with what works best for my schedule. Since school and work schedules operate on shorter timings here in the Middle East, there should be enough time to prep Iftar and dinner well in advance.

The other recommended times are generally post-iftar or pre-suhoor, times at which our bodies are better hydrated and nourished.

What kind of training?

The training intensity would vary based on when you choose to train. Since this will be the first Ramadan I will be training, I plan to stick to a light schedule, which ensures that I keep my body moving.

Model: Nura Arabi Wearing Nashata Modest Sports Wear

  • Yoga routines: There are many free apps and videos which take you through simple routines that range from 10 minute warm up exercises to 40 minute deep restorative routine which are fantastic in relaxing your muscles and breaking a sweat without tiring you out.
  • Functional Training: This involves compound movements that mimic patterns from daily life. Here again, there are several apps which have routines of varying effort and duration to guide you through a simple routine. If this is the first time you would be training while fasting, I suggest relying purely on your body weight and gradually introducing light weights based on how your body takes to the stress of fasting. Start with 3 sets of approximately 10 reps of each exercise. Some great exercises are:
    • Step Ups
    • Squats
    • Walking lunges
    • Push Ups
  • Brisk Walking / Jogging: Considering the weather in the UAE during this time of the year, I stick to the treadmill. Each day of fasting can feel different, so choose a speed and incline based on how you feel on that particular day. As tempting it is to push yourself to try harder, this is not the time to set new challenges. Start with a 15 minute walk, which you can then increase gradually in duration, speed and effort as you progress.

For the sake of avoiding repetition, I will not delve into the What to Eat during Ramadan spiel. But I will emphasize  this – HYDRATE HYDRATE HYDRATE! And start preparing your body from today. With the time being between iftar and suhoor being so short in the summer months, it may not be possible to maintain fluid intake as you would on regular days. The solution? EAT water! Hydration is aided by the intake of foods rich in water content and potassium rich foods which help maintain the electrolyte balance in our bodies.

As we all know, the key to having a productive and less stressful Ramadan is being organised.  So plan ahead and schedule in your time to train!

Wishing you all a blessed Ramadan. May it be source of nourishment for our minds and bodies!

Amina Sports Hijab and Amin Extended Sports Hijab

This year, Nashata is producing more new products that mirror modesty for sportswomen. They are Amina Sports Hijab and Amin Extended Hijab. These two hijabs share very much the same purpose that is to cater for modest sportswomen to do activities. Looking at both with a single glance, the most visible disparity you can see between these two is the design.

Amina Sports Hijab (left) and Amin Extended Sports Hijab (right)

Both Amina Sports Hijab and Amin Extended Sports Hijab offers a simple and neat look for sportswomen. They both are suitable for tall and large women as they are both long and wide and provide good chest covering.

You can check out this table for a better comparison.
(Click on picture)

Amina and Amin Extended Hijab up-close.

  • Blue.
  • Grey.
  • Gold.
  • Grips securely on face.

Amina and Amin Extended stays comfy and secure on your head even when you go for a sprint!

Jeri Villareal: The Hijabi Iron Woman

Jeri Villareal is a modest and committed triathlete from St. Louis, Missouri. Working in the Information Technology Service Lead, this incredible 41 year-old mother is also an urban farmer. Her races usually include three continuous and sequential endurance disciplines which are swimming, cycling and running or better known as triathlon.

Nashata team regularly received Jeri’s pictures on Instagram account, @nashatadotcom wearing Hooda Sports Hijab while competing in her triathlon events. After following her account @modestlytri.ing for some time we knew that she is one of the amazing sportswomen that could inspire people to live with passion. Let’s follow our interview to learn more about Jeri’s incredible journey.

N: Nashata
J: Jeri

“I hadn’t ridden a bike in over 20 years.”

N: Do you remember your first triathlon? Tell us how you became a triathlete.
J: My very first triathlon was a small local race. It consisted of a 300 yard pool swim, 20 mile bike and 4 mile run. My swim was somewhat slow but steady but I got on my bike and was able to pass a couple of people. Unfortunately, I missed the turn off and ended riding an additional 4 miles. I was so upset but ended up continuing on to the run and finish last. I learned to always review the course before the race. There is nothing worse than getting lost during a competition.

N: What inspires you to become a triathlete?
J: I first started running. Running was something that I never thought I would be any good at. However, I used it as a way to ward off depression that developed for me in the short days of the winter months. Running outside made me happy and in the cool months, my hijab was comfortable. It was a great fit. I found that the more I ran, the better I became and I progressed from running in my neighbourhood, to running a 5K then 10K and half marathons. One day a friend of my family asked me if I had ever considered triathlon. I told her I hadn’t ridden a bike in over 20 years. However she told me that if she could compete at age 60, surely I could compete. I took up the challenge and learned to ride a bike and worked on my swim stroke. 7 months later, I competed in my first triathlon.

N: Where do you usually train?
J: I train at my local gym and also I created a workout room in my basement so there is no excuse for missing my training. I have a treadmill, a bike trainer, rowing machine, resistance bands and weights.

N: Did you have a coach when you first participate in your first triathlon event?
J: At the time of my first event. I did not have a coach. However, I did get a coach soon afterwards.

N: How different is it to train by yourself and with a coach for the event?
J: It is so helpful to train with a coach because they can see the small things that you do that could cause injury or they can make changes to your form so that you are more effective. Also they can give you specific exercises or workout to help improve your particular limitation to help your reach your personal goals quickly.

N: Which is the hardest part of triathlon?
J: For me, it’s open water swim. Especially in a lake. It make me a bit anxious when all I see is darkness in the water. I learned to overcome that fear by swimming in the pool with my eyes closed and only open my eyes when taking a breath. That exercise helps me relax once I get into the murky waters of a lake.

N: How do you tackled getting out of a wetsuit quickly? Is it an issue for a hijabis triathlete?
J: While many triathlons have “wetsuit strippers”, kind volunteers that will assist you in getting out of your wetsuit quickly. I avoid their help with the wetsuit. Their good intentions could result in uncovering more than of your body than you would want. I use a two-piece wetsuit consisting of pants with bibs and then a wetsuit top that goes over that. When I was exiting the water, I can unzip and remove the top without concern of revealing anything and I take the bib straps off of my shoulders. By the time I get to transition, I just have to roll down the pants and slip them over my feet. To me, the two-piece wetsuit is not only easy to get in and out of, it also is less constricting over your chest which can be helpful for those that feel chest constriction with traditional wetsuits.

“The hijab that has truly given me so much freedom in my life.”

N: As a Muslim triathlete who wears a hijab, have you ever experienced bitter moments where people would be prejudice about your religion? Do share your story with us.
J: The triathlon community is a very kind one in general. However I think a very well-meaning woman made a comment that she has seen me at several triathlons and she always “felt sorry for me” because I seems so uncomfortable. I didn’t even know how to respond. The last thing I expected was anyone to pity me for the chose that I made as a Muslim woman to wear hijab. The hijab that has truly given me so much freedom in my life. The comment sat with me for a long time and it really did affect me. I feel sorry for her that she didn’t understand the beauty of hijab.

“A quick conversation upfront can keep you from having a frustrating conversation with race officials on race day.”

N: What is your advice to the other Muslim women who are participating in triathlon event?
J: Speak to the race director to ensure that they are aware that will be competing fully covered. There are sometimes rules about how much of your body you can cover. A quick conversation upfront can keep you from having a frustrating conversation with race officials on race day. You do not need to ask “permission” to practice your religion. This conversation is simply to educate those that may not understand why they can’t write your race number on your leg or your arm. Or why you must cover your legs and arms during the swim when wetsuits are not allowed.

N: When is your upcoming event?
A: I just finished Ironman Cartagena 70.3 on December 3rd. That was my last event of the year. In 2018, I look forward to the local St. Louis Triathlon Olympic distance occurring in May. Later in the summer there is Ironman Steelhead 70.3 and Ironman Brazil 70.3

N: How is your diet like today? Was it different with what you usually have before being a triathlete?
J: Today I follow a fairly paleo diet. I enjoy eating lots of vegetables, some low-sugar fruits, meats and healthy fats but only consume ancient and sprouted grains sparingly me. Sweets are my weakness and I avoid sugar while training for a race. I usually tighten my diet 8 weeks from race day. Before becoming a triathlete I ate so much sugar. It was in everything and I didn’t even realize it. I was always a lover of green leafy vegetables though.

N: Describe the training process for a triathlon. How did you prepare–both mentally and physically?
J: Training for a triathlon means training for 3 sports. Additionally, as an athlete over 40 years old, it is vital to incorporate recovery into my schedule. I have 2-3 weekly swim workouts, 2-3 run workouts and 2-3 bike workouts. One of the workout will be either a speed or strength building workout like hill training or interval speed work. Also one of the workout will be endurance-based like a long run (5+ miles), a long bike (20+ miles) or a straight swim (2,000+ yards). I also do yoga twice per week for recovery and weight training twice per week.
During a heavy training load, 10 hours or more a week, I tend to get deep tissue massages. I also have tried alternative recovery techniques to combat inflammation such as cryotherapy and relaxing in an infrared sauna.

“I wear my Nashata Hooda Sports hijab while biking and running. It is thin and lightweight while keeping me dry.”

N: What do you wear for your triathlon event? Do you prepare specific sports gear for each of the activities?
J: I wear what is called a triathlon kit, which is a one-piece outfit with short-sleeves and shorts. The bottom of this kit includes a thin, waterproof pad for additional comfort on the bike. Under the kit, I have leg coolers and Nashata arm coolers. Each piece is designed for air-flow and a cooling effect. These extra pieces also provide coverage for modesty as well. Outside of the water, I put on a skirt for additional modesty while biking and running.
In the water, I wear polarized, prescription goggles. My vision is poor and these goggles are a lifesaver. While they come in clear and smoke lenses, the smoke lenses are my choice because they keep the sun and glare out my eyes when swimming.
I have bike shoes that have cleats on the bottom to connect my feet to my special bicycle pedals. This allows me to apply for force at a faster rate without fear that my feet will fly off of the pedals. My bike helmet is an extremely lightweight, aerodynamic helmet which is designed for speed and performance.
I wear my Nashata Hooda Sports hijab while biking and running. It is thin and lightweight while keeping me dry. The airflow is perfect for me on the bike because I am usually still wet from the swim.

N: We’ve seen you wearing Hooda Sports Hijab in your Instagram posts. Tell us your favourite Nashata wear.
A: Just one? Honestly, I love all of the options that Nashata provides! However I think Hooda is my favorite because of its practicality. It is also lightweight, quick-drying and provides wonderful airflow. These are all things that are vital to making a triathlete comfortable.

“In Arizona, Colorado, and North Carolina, you can practice bike skills such as climbing and descending on the bike.”

N: Where would you suggest new triathletes to go for a practice in The United States? Tell us the nicest spots you’ve ever been to.
A: There are so many options for practicing and building your skills in many areas of the United States. In Arizona, Colorado, and North Carolina, you can practice bike skills such as climbing and descending on the bike. This is usually a skill that is built with a lot of practice. The locations have long inclines for triathletes to build their climbing endurance. In Florida, there is an immersive swimming technique class for triathletes that can get them ready for open water swim by practicing certain techniques in the pool. Areas like southern Texas, Florida and California are great locations for triathletes in the rest of the country to practice in the very late or early season due to their mild winters. When it’s snowing in December in Missouri, I can swim outdoors in Orlando, Florida.

“I tried to leave every Colombian I met with a good impression of Muslims, Islam and Muslim women in sports.”

N: Have you ever participated a triathlon in a different country? What was it like?
A: December 3rd, I travelled to Cartagena, Colombia to compete in a Half Ironman. The experience was absolutely amazing. Arriving in the country I immediately noticed that people were very curious about me. They took photos of me and requested that I be in photos with them. The children that watched the race were very fascinated with me and called out to me specifically to cheer me on and told me that they loved me and referred to me as “Aunty”. As a Muslim woman competing in hijab in a foreign and predominantly Christian country, I know I am an ambassador for all Muslims whether I want to be or not. It is an honour that I take very seriously and I tried to leave every Colombian I met with a good impression of Muslims, Islam and Muslim women in sports.

N: What do you find to be the most rewarding thing about triathlon?
J: The challenge of triathlon is so great. I enjoy that fact that there are so many facets to the race. You can have an excellent swim and a difficult bike and turn everything around while running. There are people that are good at all three sports or some that find they excel in one particular sport over the other two. Regardless of your level of skill you will never participate in a triathlon and not hear a perfect stranger cheer for you and say encouraging words. When triathletes see someone struggling, that is they cheer for them the loudest. This sport is kind.

N: What is your advice to the new triathletes?
J: Remember that you don’t have to be better than anyone on the course, just be the best version of yourself. Be better than yesterday and keep moving forward.

N: What do you wish for in the future?
J: I would like to work on improving my swim and run times and work on my climbing skills. I believe I can be a better version of myself and look forward to seeing her very soon.

N: We wish you the best of luck in life! Thank you so much for agreeing to do the interview with us. We gained a lot of information from your wonderful experiences.
J: Thank you so much!

Sometimes we are too busy competing with other people that we overlook what’s truly important, to be the best version of ourselves. Be better than yesterday and keep moving forward. Thank you Jeri for the wonderful reminder!

Nashata at the The Dubai Women’s Run 2017

The Dubai Women’s Run held on 17.11.17 was a very special run for me in more ways than one.   

Firstly, It marked the launch of Nashata in the UAE, a project which I had envisioned   with the founder, Eliza, exactly one year ago.

Alhamdulillah, it came to fruition with a lot of support and encouragement from family and friends, despite the many bumps and hurdles along the way.

Secondly, the event proved to be a huge learning experience for me.  Running is truly a metaphor for life – so many life lessons reinforced through my period of training and of course race day.

 

The importance of setting goals –big or small. 

I am not a runner.  Far from it in fact. I had been telling myself that I will run a 5K “some day” for quite some time – until I decided that I needed to set myself a target date.  So I signed up for the run,and followed an 8 week training program on a running app.

As a mother venturing into a new business, keeping up with the app’s schedule was not always easy – but I tried to maintain some form of discipline and prioritized my time for training as my time for calm and focus.  Race day was challenging but I managed to shave a good minute from my previous time.

The best part –  the adrenaline rush lasts for a good 48 hours 😊

Compete with yourself, not others, and that will always bring out a better version of you 

At the end of the day, running is all about effort.  You will get uncomfortable.  You will want to stop.  You will ask yourself many times, “How am I going to make it to the finish line?”  You just have to keep moving!

Finishing the race becomes so much more about your mindset than your physical ability.  I slowed down at several points during the race, but as the time raced towards the 40 minute mark (my previous time), I sprinted to the finish line to finish at 39.06 mins.  Yes,  every second counts.  

 

There will always be records to beat – aim for your personal best!

Celebrating our own identities

The run was a beautiful confluence of so many women from different backgrounds, fitness levels with different goals.  There were mothers running with their daughters, women dressed in Indian saris, hijabs and abayas, all participating at the same event.  It challenged me to see beyond my own presumptions.  We can carry and celebrate our identities anywhere and everywhere.

So here’s to being proactive, setting goals, making no more gccexcuses and constantly striving to bring out the better version of ourselves each day, in sha Allah!

So…who’s up for a 10K?

Shop at gcc,nashata.com.  

Follow us on instagram @nashata.me

Turn Your Athleisure Into A Leisure #OOTD

OOTD Athleisure Nashata

Athleisure style is ubiquitous nowadays. Either wearing a pair of leggings, sweatpants, Sports hijab, we are seeing many of these sportsgear worn everywhere apart from the gym. Leggings are no longer consider as “the ultimate gymwear” because you see so much of them worn leisurely and it’s perfectly acceptable. This fashion has become a trend. People are wearing them all day and no one’s complaining. Women today want to wear comfortable clothes yet still look stylish. Thank God we have ditched the corset era. Phew!

In the women’s business, there is no performance without style.

According to our customers’ reviews, Nashata is highly known for its performance and high quality material that lasts for years. Many of them claimed that they love the designs as well. However, not many realized that the designs are evergreen. In other words, if you wear Nashata you can never go out-of-style. wink* In the women’s business, there is no performance without style. From various range of our products such as Azza toplectics, the lovely Jasmine pants, and Hoodie cardigans and of course, the ever versatile Raaz glove – this is the perfect leisure wear for women who place a lot of importance in being comfortable. So get your old Heather top out, because you’re going to need them.

Check out these fab wearable #OOTD on the run!

  • Catching up with your mates are the best thing in the world! There's so much to dish about when both are busy with lives and have less time to hang out with each other. Make time with your best mates and slap on something casual-fun to wear for a catch-up! Hijabs: Athleijab, EZ Tunes in melange grey Tops: Riada Hoodie in teal, Heather top Galaxy series Bottom: Riada pants, Dual stir-up leggings
  • Out for an evening walk? Nothing is looks more casual than a pair of black harem pants and a cool grey Jazri top to go with it! Hijab: EZ Tazz Top: Jazri Bottom: Harem pants
  • Feeling like curling up with a book and longing for some fresh air at the same time? How bout an outdoor reading by the lake for a self-therapy session. Hijab: EZ Tunes Top: Jazri in womanly purple Bottom: Brown speckled harem pants
  • Who said you can't look like a 24K magic in this casual Riada Hoodie? Cool hoodie + black leggings = FAB! Hijab: Raaz Glove Top: Riada Hoodie Bottom: Stirrup leggings
  • Be in your own world with this Harry Potter-inspired robe in dark maroon and just go Wingardium Leviosa! Hijab: EZ Tunes Top: Jazri, Sports Hooded Cardigan Bottom: Speckled Harem pants
  • Are you sick of the mall? Go out for a picnic with your peers for a change! Hijab: EZ Tazz Top: Heather top Gemstone Bottom: Speckled Harem pants
  • Sometimes all you need is a jump and just be YOU! Hijab: Raaz glove Top: Smokey striped Hoodie Bottom: Hattha pants

But the most important thing of all, SMILE. Because just like Annie said, You’re Never Fully Dressed without a Smile. 🙂

Wear It Pink October


I started running pink early October wherever I go.

In this essential month of October, we have launched programmes to spread awareness in conjunction of Pink October Breast Cancer Awareness. Our main highlights was to promote self-defense among ladies. On the 21st. October we held a free Kickboxing class for our customers at the Hammerfist Fight Club to promote health awareness on breast cancer. To pay respect for the breast cancer survivors, we showed support and care by wearing pink on that day. We limited the number of participants to 20 people as the fight studio isn’t that big. Many people showed up more than we expected and most importantly, they were all in pink! Frankly, we could not not help feeling a little bit moved to see how dedicated the supporters were that day. Kudos to people who care!

Here are some pictures of our participants showing their pink spirit.

Sisters standing up for each other. We gotcha’ back sis!



Having fun learning self defense with our trainer, Benny.


Give up or give it all you’ve got! We chose the latter.

Here are some short clips of us giving our best in spite of zero experience in kickboxing.

We highlighted our pink coloured products and encouraged our customers to share their post on instagram wearing pink to show support through social media.

Amin Sports Hijab in fuschia. Riada Nahl in pink.
Tron 2 Ultra Top streaked in hot pink.
Our dear customer, Azzie Mohd showed support wearing full Nashata items in pink.

Until the end of the month, even our founder, Eliza Noordin portrayed endless support by wearing pink Heather Floral Top during participating a marathon in Jakarta.

In a nutshell, though October has come to an end, Pink October spirit will always live in our hearts. Hats off to the breast cancer survivors! Our thoughts and prayers will always be with you heroes.

How to Plan a Run-Work-Cation

Love running, have to travel for work and love to explore new places? Can you do all these when you travel for work? Sounds like too much to plan, to pack? – here’s the good news, it is a lot easier now with technology; apps, location based technology and the internet.

Whether or not you are travelling alone, with a colleague or a friend, this is a list of 8 things you need to know for a Run-Work-Cation:

  1. Know your work-times
    First of all, know your work times and work schedules.
  2. Travel time
    Travel time can be long and at times, you don’t get much options. Try to arrive at your destination with some time for you to rest and adjust to time differences. If you are allocating a day to travel to your destination and another day to travel back, try to find flight options that takes you into the city of your destination in the daytime. Then you get to travel a bit later in the evening or at night. Do budget for travelling time from airport or stations to your intended hotel.

    Many museums like the National museum in Hanoi operate early at 8am.

    Many museums like the National Museum in Hanoi operate as early as 8am. I visited the museum before my 12 noon flight back home

  3. Find a strategic location to stay
    Road travels can be time consuming and you would want to stay somewhere strategic – close to your work location and tourist attraction spots. If you like running outdoors, find a place to stay that is closer to a park or a running area. If you have the freedom to choose where to stay, use trivago.com, booking.com traveloka.com, expedia.com or others. Pay attention to the the attraction locations when you book. It is also nice to know where the closest mosque is.

    Many tourist spots and monuments areas have wide open spaces with attractions close to each other - within 500 meter - 1km range

    Tourist spots and monuments have wide open spaces with attractions close to each other – within 500 meter – 1km range. There were many runners at the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum area. It is next to the Ho Chi Minh Museum

  4. Plan Time to Run
    • Participating in popular international marathons or other races need more planning. You may need to go through ballots mechanism and there is registration deadlines. But who knows you may be lucky to be at popular races. Here’s a list of tops marathons across the globe.
    • If you plan to train and run –   morning before 8am or evening after 5pm is good. You can run outdoor as soon as the sun is out. If you have tight schedule and no time to go outdoor, run on the treadmill in the gym (book a hotel with a treadmill).
      1. Check out top running spots in the cities where you are at. Use Routes on MapMyRun mobile app to find nearby places to run or you can search for the city at MapMyRun. You could also create your route in advance and plan the distance. Unfortunately, not all city or countries routes are listed, but on those listed it would be of great benefit for planning your run times.
      2. Strava Routes do have similar route planning options that can assist you through your mobile devices, be it your phones or Garmin forerunner watches.
        Hoan Kiem Lake Loop Using Strava

        Hoan Kiem Lake is a tourist spot in Hanoi and here’s a route loop using Strava. You can get these routes in advance!

        These apps and technology have made running exciting as you can explore places while running on your own. Share your route!

  5. Plan Time to Play Tourist
    What are your area of interests? Be it adventure, shopping, sight-seeing, religion, history or culture, you can get many good suggestions at travel site such as tripadvisor.com, agoda.com or country-specific tourist guide websites.
    Select those to your interests, study their location and make sure they are close to your place of stay. Plan your visit to tourist sites based on their :

    • Locations. This is where location-based and google maps are useful. You can know how far they are from your hotel by using google  maps, and that would give you an estimation of how long it takes to reach your destination.
    • Operating hours. Typically this info is listed on websites or Google Business Site
    • Weather condition. Plan for indoor activities if the weather is not friendly, and plan for outdoor activities if weather forecast is good.

      Run & Explore tourist sites on foot

      At Hoan Kiem Lake. Running & exploring tourist sites on foot after work, then to the night market close-by

  6. Weather Forecast
    • Do know the temperature and climate of the cities you are travelling to at least a week before you travel and a day before you travel. It is important so that you can pack the right attires and shoes. Items like raincoats, sweaters and sun gaiters would be most useful in those circumstances.
  7. Pack Smartly
    • Athleisurewear & Travelwear
      Make your running attire your travel attire too! Hoodies, moisture-wicking tops, leggings, running pants, sportsbra, raazglove and scarfs that are lightweight are great for travelling.ar
    • You know what you need to bring. No compromise.
    • Shoes
      Wear running should when you travel and bring workshoes if you travel light. If space is not an issue, ladies, bring more !

      Travelling in my running attire

      Travelling in my running attire

  8. Transport
    • It is convenient to get around if you put up close to transportation hub. If you are not, use public transportation that is most convenient and safe for you. Nowadays, I find services like Grab and Uber super convenient. They can be faster and cheaper too.

      Other than on foot, I was on Grab  90% of the time in Hanoi. Super convenient!

Make sure you have your mobile phones, smart devices, good data services and purposeful apps of travel and sport installed to have a great Run-Work-Cation!

Most of all – Stay Safe!

5 Reasons to Choose Modest Athleisurewear

Ladies who are always on the go, running on tight schedule at work or home need outfits that support their activities. Modest Athleisurewear suits modern and progressive women who seek for more coverage in their attire. Here’s why:

1. Comfortable & Practical
Athleisurewear for modest ladies or hijabis are designed not only for exercises, but also designed and tested for comfort and practicality. They are mostly simple, loose and with no-pins designs – injected with cool and innovative features like 2-in-1 tops and hijabs, hidden pockets and even hoodies.

Use no pin hijabs for Travel

Use no-pin hijabs and zipper top for travelling

Simple and practical outfits

A visit to the museum in a simple and practical outfit

2.  Fabric for Active Ones
Almost all activewears are made of fabric that is moisture wicking, fast-drying, lightweight, anti-odor and sun-protective. You can sweat out in it from head to toe with out feeling discomfort, even for long hour use.

Travel Far in Nashata Athleisurewear

Anti-odor and sun-protective top for outdoor activity

Nashata's New Athleisure Top & Athleijab

Nashata’s New Athleisure Top & Athleijab

3. Good for Travel & Vacation
Put on the most comfy athleisure wear when you travel, especially for long haul journey on the plane, train or bus.  Be it easy-to-put-on pinless hijab, slouchy sweatpants, harem pants or hoodie top to cover your head when you nap, athleisure wear is just perfect for you! Walk about at the airport and train stations, and seat comfy for hours in total comfort and style.

Walk around comfortably while travelling

Walk around comfortably while travelling

Don’t even mention how perfect they are for vacations. They are mostly lightweight, easy to wash and fast drying. So pack enough  athleisure wear when you travel.

Hooded Cardigan and Leggings for Travel

Hooded Cardigan and Leggings for Beach Outerwear

You would always find your sports hijab, modest top and pants useful throughout your travel. So hesitate not to bring more.

Ready to nap in a long haul flight

Ready to nap in a long haul flight

4, Fashionable & Fresh
Simple and practical designs are indeed fashionable. Suitable for modern, active women, you just need to  mix and match your activewear to get the fun and fresh styles. You can reduce layering without compromising modest dressing styles.

Fresh and Fashionable

Relaxed & Fresh Look


5. Assimilate with any footwear
Good news is that you can wear athleisure outfits and they go well with shoes and  sandals. Hence the reason why – they are good investment for your wardrobe – versatile, comfy and multipurpose.

Riada Active Pants go well in any footwear

Riada Active Pants

With high heels shoes and right color - you get a more formal look

With high heels shoes and right color combination – you get a more formal look

Be creative to make your style fresh yet modest. Keep a healthy and active lifestyle by wearing athleisurewear as much as you can. It will keep you moving!

No motivation ?? Here are 5 tips to motivate you to run ?

Find motivation to run

Stop giving excuses

Have you ever felt so lazy that you couldn’t put on your running attire,  lace up your sport shoes, to get off your lazy ass or to go for your routine run?

And you start to blame the weather,..“it is too hot today and I might get sunburn”, or “since it is windy, i better take a nap” …and you start thinking of thousand reasons to escape your run..

Actually, There’s nothing wrong with you, except…YOU’VE LOST YOUR MOTIVATION.

So, here are 5 tips to motivate you to keep running 😉

1. Set your goal. 

Plan your mileage target for every month wisely. Write them BIG and paste it at an area you can easily see. This will motivate you and get you to be more responsible towards your goal.

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2. Register for a race.

Once you click the ‘register’ button, you definitely feel like,..“Soon, I will run for this event, and yes, I should start run today”. You will start to find time to train and become consistent as the ‘race day’ comes nearer.

At the REPC..I'm very excited to run soon!

3. Remember, it’s for your health.

Do not run because your friends are running too, and that if you’re not running with them,..you’d be left behind and have no friends. Do not run because you wanna have the slimmest figure among your fat colleagues, do not run because it is a trend. Run because you feel good and fresh after accomplish your goal. Run because it is definitely the best stress reliever. And yes, remember that after you run, you can eat like a MONSTER!

An apple a day keeps the doctor away

4. Find running buddies. 

Running alone will sometime make you feel demotivated. You will feel bored, lonely and distracted. Get a running buddy, set up your goal together, plan and train. It will be even more fun if you guys sign up for a race and compete together. Your performance will be improve if you guys aim and train hard.

They are doing well today ;) Congrats guys!

Running sisters

5. Put your best attire on

Introduce variety into your running wardrobe so that you will be more excited to run everyday. Everybody wants look good and nice in whatever they’re wearing, so do you when you run. And yes, your running selfie definitely would be gorgeous too. Make sure you are comfortable and confident in your attires.

Capture

Till then, we’ll meet again, keep fit and be inspired! ?

The Kuching Marathon when I no longer run with my legs

Yesterday, I ran the Kuching Marathon for the second time. It is one of my favourite homeground running events that I never miss.

At the REPC..I'm very excited to run soon!

At the REPC..Looking very excited to run!

What’s exciting about the run was that I did a back to back full marathon (FM). A week before, I ran a full marathon (42.195km) at the Standard Charted Kuala Lumpur Marathon better known as SCKLM.  My goal was to  finish BOTH marathons without injury and I did it! Hoyeahh!

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Hoyeahh! I finished strong after back to back FM.


After coming back from SCKLM, I was very busy attending classes and lectures. Honestly, a week before the Kuching Marathon I didn’t run much, only carbo-loading and hydrating myself well. I believed that all I needed was a good rest and to continue loading myself with carbs since there was only a week gap before the Kuching Marathon.

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I couldn’t wait to arrive at the finish line,..but before that let’s take a pic first!

I was glad that the number of participants at the Kuching Marathon increased this year. Yayy! Here’s the breakdown:

  • 5km – 2200
  • 10km – 1897
  • 21km – 2343
  • 42km – 1658
    (info from KPD Kuching)

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It was almost time to flag off,..and everybody was soo excited!

The full marathon flagged off at 2am. I liked it early because first  – no sunburn and second – the weather would not be not that hot. I was hoping to finish the run before 8 am.

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Yayy! Aina was back hometown for this event! Run Aina run!

The route was almost flat with some not-so-hilly, and long, never ending road. I started my first 10 km with paces ranging from 5.30 to 6.30 min per km and the timing for first 10 km was 59 min. For the next 11 km, my average pace dropped to 7 to 8.30 min per km, hence my timing was 2 hr 21 min for the first 21 km. Oh ya, I did spend 6-8 minutes for toilet stop at the Shell petrol station nearby. Hmm, how I wished that I didn’t stop.

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Running with energy for a selfie ;P The Nashata hoodie top keeps my head dry from morning dew

It was cold and humid, and was sure most of the runners performed best at their first 21 km. I then continued running until km 32. It was already 5.50 am and I stopped at the Petronas Petrol Station nearby for about 7-8 min to perform Fajr prayer.

By the time I started running back, it was already 6 am. If I really wanted go for sub 5, I only had about one hour left for my last 10 km. However, sub 1 for my last 10 km was probably impossible. I remained positive and changed my target to sub 5 hr 15 min, 1 min earlier from my timing at SCKLM – 5hr 16min.

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I like this pic very much! I look like an Olympians..teehee 😛 photo credit to DNA Sport 🙂

I kept telling myself, “just keep running, this suffering is almost at its end”

My last 5 km was really tough, as I was fighting with myself to complete within my target. I no longer ran with my legs, I ran with heart. I kept running, no matter how slow it was, at least I kept moving. I kept my pace within 9 to 10.30 km/min, and at that time, I could no longer feel my leg. All I could feel was my socks soaking in sweat, my big toes felt like being pressed, this and that…my only wish was that I could just walk.

Towards the finish line, there were a few cheering squats who kept entertaining the runners. I ran even faster towards my last 500 m., and yet that 500 m felt like 500 km. Arghh!

Finally, I finished my 10th Full Marathon strong at the Kuching Marathon in 5 hours 9 min.*drum rolls*.. Yayy, mission sub 5hr 15min accomplished and 7 minutes earlier from FM SCKLM. Alhamdullilah.

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My first time running in Amin Sports Hijab and I love it. I love the look and the feel. Yeahh! I made it! Forget the mile, and just remember the glory 😉

Overall, the traffic was well controlled and organised. However, the water stations had limited supply of  plain water and isotonic drink. Runners had to queue up and share cups to drink, to our inconvenience. My take home message is to bring small bottle at my next run. Should the organiser fail to provide enough water throughout the run, at least I have my own.

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Thank you guys for support 😉 and not to forget, Fatin finished her first run, a 10km within cut off time..congrats! *claps

Before I went back, I managed to meet up with some friends who flew in from Peninsular just to race. Ermm, not entirely, they flew in for Kek Lapis and Mee kolok too 😛

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Congrats Khairul (in black shirt) for doing his personal best for his HM. And others, congrats guys for finishing strong.

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This superman did a back to back too,..with an awesome timing ,..sub 4.30..congrats Mambo!

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My medical lecturer (in blue hijab) also ran this morning,..she’s did 5km but overmileage with 3km add on! Congrats Dr! Next time she should upgrade to 10km 😉

When someone tells you, ‘You can’t’, turn around and say, ‘Watch me!’ ….And the bragging continues ….. 😛

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We continued bragging,..because the suffer is astounding!

Before the moment ended, we celebrated our victory with…..tadaaa!

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Mee Kolok with FM finisher medal add-on!

Till then, we shall meet again in next post 🙂

Keep running and be inspired!