The Weekend Runner: Litefm Runderthon

I am sure everyone can relate to cancer. Some of you might be cancer survivors, or perhaps we have seen a family member or a friend fight through cancer. It is a silent killer that knows no gender or age boundaries. November is cancer awareness month, specifically male cancer awareness month, or more commonly known as Movember. In support of Movember, Litefm organized a free fun run called Runderthon to create awareness about male-related cancers, as well as celebrate cancer survivors towards a healthier lifestyle.


As the name of the run suggests, participants were required to run in their most colourful boxers over their running tights at Padang Astaka, Petaling Jaya (Malaysia). Both male and female participants showed off their most interesting boxers with witty designs. I think it was a great idea, because although this run is about male-related cancers, women should be aware about it too to support the men in their lives to go for annual medical check-ups.

IMG_1775Trying out the new Mumtaz hijab. I think the Rose Pink colour matches my hawaiian-themed “boxers” quite well.

The run turned out to be quite a sight! As it was a free fun run, the event drew participants from all walks of life, but mostly from avid listeners of the Litefm radio channel, as their favourite radio announcers will be running along too. In spirit of a fun run, some participants went beyond just wearing boxers – they even put on costumes!

IMG_1788#MommySonGoals. Running has always been a natural sport for humans. It is never too young to start running!

IMG_1778The angel has landed…in Petaling Jaya.

IMG_1786Batman, did you leave your Batmobile at home?

IMG_1780Weekend Runner turned Disney character.

Ultimately, the run was about creating awareness about male-related cancers. So they handed us some leaflets from the National Cancer Society of Malaysia about the importance of early detection, and how to do self-checks at home. Overall, everyone had a fun and educational experience at today’s run.

IMG_1798Early detection can save your life.


Until next week,

The Weekend Runner.

The Weekend Runner: Race Rituals

As races slowed down, I find myself spending more time on reading and researching about running. After browsing a few articles, I came across several interesting information: Before a race, Usain Bolt admitted to eating chicken nuggets as one of the ways to prepare himself. Killian Jornet wrote in his book ‘Run or Die’, that he will have a jar of Nutella after every ultra race. I’ll call these practices as the ‘race ritual’.


While your race rituals may or may not be similar to the fastest man on earth, I am sure most of us have a unique set of mental preparation – a set of step-by-step behaviour that only takes place on Race Day. Regardless of the distance, location, or type of race, I have certain procedures that I will follow consciously and unconsciously and why I think they help.


–        Pre-race rituals

1)     Laying out my clothes on the night before the race. I do not want to end up looking for my number bib at 4am. Also, nothing new on race day to prevent chaffing, weird colour coordination, or other outfit mishaps.


Which Nashata top and hijab goes well for tomorrow’s race?

2)     Eat. A lot. Carbo-loading, protein-loading, etc. Whatever you call it, everyone has different fuel and nutrition needs. Personally, I don’t see the difference, as long as I don’t skip dinner.

3)     Wake up at least 2.5 hours before flag-off time. Ample time to have breakfast, make coffee, warm up, and ensure that I get the best parking spot.

4)     Music on full blast while driving to the flag-off venue to get the adrenaline pumping. Confession: I love listening to Taylor Swift before every race.

5)     Check the race route. The elevation, road, a crazy uphill – basically, I need to study and know what I am in for.

6)     A quick facebook update once I am in the holding pen. And taking loads of pictures. I find that it helps to ease the pre-race jitters.


Good morning everyone what time is it? It’s Race O’ Clock!!!


–        Post-race rituals

Only 3:

1)     Finisher pictures with the medal.

2)     Eat. A lot. Because it feels rewarding to know that I deserve that 2 pieces of roti canai and kuih.


Not just desserts, but an extra piece of roti canai perhaps?

3)     Sleep and rest. I’ll be hibernating, do not expect me to emerge before evening.

Do you have your own race rituals? What about lucky objects, favourite socks, or something that you will never run without? Do you answer your phone or text messages on the morning of the race?


Signing off until next week,

The Weekend Runner.

The Weekend Runner: Squash

It’s a Sunday night and I am sure most of us dread the thought of going to work again tomorrow. I try my best not to think about Mondays by purposely scheduling an interesting activity every Sunday.  For this week, I decided to pick up squash again.



No I was not swatting a fly


Although I am not entirely new to this sport, I still consider myself a beginner because I have not touched a racquet for the past 2 years. The last time I played was during my university days when I get to use the recreational facilities for free. Back then, I did not have any formal training, instead I practiced with a few friends who are already familiar or good with squash. These days I just practice on aiming and running around to keep up with the ball at a nearby clubhouse. But if you are interested to try, I am sure there are plenty of free squash courts around Klang Valley/ KL.


I found the racquet on sale for only RM60, and I could not resist a good bargain. Best impulsive purchase ever!


At the end of the session, squash turned out to be a great complement to my running training. I had a good upper body work out, plus some speed practice because chasing after the ball requires quick bursts of energy.


Difficulty: Depending on your fitness level, and willingness to learn

Fun Factor: Fast pace sport, stress-busting

Recommendation: If you are familiar with badminton, then you are recommended to try squash as well

Until next week,

Ainaa, The Weekend Runner.

P/S: Travelling or working outstation is not an excuse to skip working out. I was in Janda Baik for work purposes, and I managed to sneak in a few, quick morning and afternoon runs. Besides, I have always believed that the best way to explore a place is by foot.

IMG_9001 IMG_9015

The view beckons for an outdoor run. How can I say no to that?


The Weekend Runner: Original Bootcamp trial class

When I am not running I enjoy going to trial classes. They are a great chance to cross-train, plus it gives me a chance to try a lot of different things that are currently trending or new in the health and fitness scene. So upon receiving a promotional email, I did not hesitate to register for a free trial class conducted by Original Bootcamp last Saturday under team PJ Bravo at Padang Astaka, PJ.

We started off by warming up with some basic exercises, such push up, burpees, etc. Then the real work out begins with circuit training. We were divided into 4 teams and placed at the 4 corners of the mini-field, so there are 4 stations consisting of different set of exercises.

After a quick water break we were divided again into 2 groups, where there real fun begins: We had to complete a set of work out, crawl under obstacles, burpee in between the obstacles, and flip a tire with the help of at least 2 team mates. It was a race to see which team can flip the tire to the finishing line first, while the losing team was ‘rewarded’ with an additional 6 burpees.


The tire we had to flip. I was intimidated by its size and I don’t think I would be able to do it without the help of another team mate. Image source: google.


After class, I spoke to a recruit who has been in the program ever since they started in Malaysia. The reason why she loved this program so much was because for the past 5 years they rarely or almost never repeat the same class, so you don’t feel like you are stuck in a routine.



Fun, crazy bunch of people. Suitable for most fitness level and age group.

For more info check out their website:

Difficulty: Moderate to Challenging

Fun factor: Sociable, engaging, outdoor setting

Recommendation: Highly recommended, if you are staying/working in PJ.

Until next week,

The Weekend Runner,


P/S: By the way, since most races start at 5.30a.m., is there anybody else who is already accustomed to waking up at 3a.m.? Or have I lost the ability to sleep in; I might be lying down in my bed but my mind is out on the road or in the park. After tossing and turning, I gave up trying to go back to sleep, had breakfast, got dressed, and went out for a short sunrise run.



And I am glad that I did


The Weekend Runner: Viper Challenge.

Ever since I started running I have drafted a Running Bucket List to make sure I cover all important and interesting events. It also gave me motivation to keep running and training. After contemplating for a few months, last Sunday I finally had the guts to join Viper Challenge. What separated Viper Challenge from other runs was their unique 20 obstacles, set in a 20km course. It is also known as the toughest obstacle run in Asia. Personally, I don’t think you have to be really fit to join Viper Challenge, as long as you have been working out regularly and have ran a half marathon prior to this event. I have ran 2 half marathons and a few 10-12km runs as one of my training programs, plus some gym sessions to work out my upper body. I was mentally and physically prepared to push myself, but little did I know it would take my team about 6 hours to complete! (This is equivalent to the time taken to complete a full marathon (42km) for an average runner).

Overall, it was a good event. The organizers were experienced, decent surau and wash down facilities were provided, and sufficient water and banana stations. Plus crews were stationed at every obstacle should something go wrong.

Registering as a team is highly recommended. Ours was called ‘Team Ayam Goreng’, consisting of 5 guys and 2 girls. Prior to Viper Challenge we ran a few races together, so all of us acknowledged each other’s fitness level and group dynamics. However, this was the first Viper Challenge for all of us. We will take our time, as long as we complete the whole course without any serious injury, I think we did a good job as a team. But not to worry if you registered as an individual, because there are plenty of helpful people to push or pull you up along the way should you encounter a difficult obstacle.

We started off light and slow, jogging for the first few kilometres and after several obstacles. However at about halfway of the course we slowed down to walking as the trail gets increasingly challenging and hilly. Plus the obstacles gets harder and harder towards the finishing line, with more emphasis on core and upper body strength such as climbing ramps, ladders, monkey bars, balancing, and even some swimming. There were also some fun obstacles as well, such as a water slide and crawling.


In conclusion, I would definitely join again next year! And hopefully, I can complete it in under 6 hours. For the mean time, I shall reward myself with a nice foot massage and a manicure.



Your Weekend Runner,





Some tips on Viper Challenge:

1)      Get there early, and secure a good parking spot. If your flag off time is 6.30am, yes, be there at 4.30am just as the organizers suggested. Line up for baggage check in is long.

2)      There is going to be loads of mud and water. Wear a dark colour, dri-fit shirt that dries up quickly before you get to the next obstacle. Do not wear anything that you do not plan to throw away. Trail shoes and gloves are highly recommended. Girls, if you wear hijab keep it simple with an instant shawl or tudung bawal. Bring a fresh set of clothes and to change into after the event.

3)      Do not bring your smartphone, unless you have a waterproof pouch. I put mine in an impact-proof case, triple-bagged it in a ziplock and plastic bag, carried it in a pouch, and to my surprise it survived the whole course.

4)      Try out everything, as long as it is within your limits. Make full use of the experience. Keep up with a positive spirit. This is not a race!


Team Ayam Goreng enjoying our 'teh tarik' breakfast. What is Viper Challenge without some mud


Team Ayam Goreng is clearly enjoying our ‘teh tarik’ breakfast. What is Viper Challenge without some mud!