Image and Lifestyle

Fashion, Style, and Professional Impression in Hong Kong

Training for an Ultra-Marathon: Racing The Planet Training Camp

I have just one more month to prepare for my first ultra-marathon.  The SAHARA ULTRA MARATHON RACE is part of the “4 Deserts”, named by TIME magazine, as one of the top 10 Endurance Competitions in the world.  On October 3rd, I will be joining this year’s race along with 150 other competitors from 35 countries, who are running 250 kilometers through The Valley of the Whales in Egypt.  The 6-day Marathon finishes at the Pyramids of Giza.

So, how does one even begin to physically prepare for something like this?  The truth is, I had no idea until last weekend’s adventure with Racing the Planet’s Training Camp http://www.racingtheplanet.com/store/expert-advice.html, hosted and created by endurance champion Eric LaHaie.  Details as follows:

Day 1 – A morning discussion about the logistics of a 250K race: packing, training, gear, nutrition, etc.  Later in the afternoon, we arrived at Sai Kung Country Park and quickly split into 2 groups: runners and fast-walkers.  The scenic and moderately intense Luk Wu Country Trail led us to Sai Wan Beach where we set up camp as the sun set and stars revealed themselves.   The ambitious runners donned their headlamps and hit the trails again while the rest of us heated water and enjoyed freeze-dried Expedition Food for dinner.  Following dinner, we all chilled out under the moonlight – a perfect ending to the day, as the beach was stunning, quiet, and presented a remarkably special side of Hong Kong… complete with cuttlefishing boats in the distance.  Unfortunately, the once soft sandy beach soon felt hard and unforgiving, and sleeping was a restless challenge.  A priceless indication of what desert sleeping may be like!

Day 2 – I watched the sun rise pink over the sea and we were all up at 6am.  Expedition Food breakfast and we hit the trails by 7am for a glorious morning of training before the heat of the day.  The air was cool and fresh as we climbed.  I split from the group before they made it to Sharp’s Peak and looped around the NorthEast trails which brought them back to our Sai Wan Beach starting point.  Meanwhile, I jogged on with my backpack for another 2 hours, then ultimately walked …until I caught a ride home.  Arriving home, I felt extremely positive about the entire 2-day event, but also exhausted, incredibly sandy, and realizing I needed to make serious modifications to my racing wardrobe before hitting the desert.  And… I noticed a place on my foot where a blister is likely to form during the race, despite wearing Injinji socks, SmartWool, and trail running shoes which are 1.5 size too large.  Good to know these things now rather than later.

The verdict: this training camp was a fun, well-organized dress rehearsal for the Sahara, and I know what I need to do for the next one month.  The next post will highlight my training plan for the coming three weeks.

I am running to help raise funds for HOPE for Charity.  If you care to donate, kindly refer to the below donation details.  Thank you!

The charity’s account details (Hong Kong):

HSBC Account no: 813-284411-001; Hope for Children

Reference mentioned “Jennie Running The Sahara”

OR

Cheque payable to “Hope for Children (Hong Kong) limited”

GPO Box 947, Hong Kong

Please reference “Jennie Running The Sahara” on the back of the cheque

Cheers Friends,

Jennie

Filed under: 4 Deserts, Classes, Exercise, Hong Kong, Racing, Racing The Planet, Ultra Marathon, , , , , ,

Interview with Dr. Raymond Chan, Medical Director of Fit Health Physiotherapy Centre

Interview with Dr. Raymond Chan, Medical Director of Fit Health Physiotherapy Centre

Doctor Raymond Chan is the Medical Director of Fit Health Physiotherapy Centre in Causeway Bay.  The Centre specializes in physiotherapy for injury management and rehabilitation, personal training services, and a variety of classes for prenatal women and couples.

Do you offer workshops and/or classes for women and couples expecting a baby?

Dr. Chan: We offer workshop on breathing exercises and massage therapy.  This is a one-and-a-half hour workshop for couples to take during which the mother would learn the breathing techniques, her partner would also learn how to give clues to the breathing.  The partner will also learn the massage techniques for relieving common problems in pregnancy, such as neck and back pain, legs cramp etc.

What health services does your clinic provide for prenatal women?

  • Dr. Chan: We offer Pre-Natal physiotherapy for pregnant women with neck and back ache, legs pain, etc.  Our treatment will emphasize manual therapy, so that expectant mothers can be treated without the risk of side effects from medication.

Do you have classes for postnatal women as well?

  • Dr. Chan: Yes, we offer treatment for post-natal urinary incontinence.  This is done by female physiotherapist, using pelvic floor muscle exercises, biofeedback, and electrotherapy to stimulate the pelvic floor muscles.  We also have classes for baby massage techniques for any member of the family to join.

Do you offer OB/GYN services at your clinic?

  • Dr. Chan: We offer Musculo-Skeletal, Sports medicine, and Physiotherapy service at our clinic.  We are not specialists in Obs & Gynae.  We would like to keep our roles separate, and co-operate with Hong Kong Obs & Gynae doctors, rather than be their competitor.

How does your clinic differ from the Hong Kong hospitals who offer antenatal classes?

  • Dr. Chan: We are conveniently located in Causeway Bay, right above MTR exit.  Our pre- and post-natal exercise classes are available every day.  There is no joining fee or membership fee – you simply pay for the classes you take, and there is no restriction on which day you take it. (unlike some places, which only offer classes e.g. every Wednesday evenings, and you pay for each month, if you miss a class then you miss it)  Also our exercise classes are all led by registered physiotherapists with additional qualifications in fitness training.  The class size is kept small to maximum 10 so that the teacher can give individual attention.

Our pre- and post-natal classes are function orientated: pre-natal exercise class will focus on relieving the discomforts and preventing health problems, and breathing control to prepare for giving birth.  Our post-natal exercise will focus on “tuning” the muscles weakened during child-bearing and giving birth, and functional strength for taking care of babies; unlike many other places where they emphasize post-natal exercise as post-natal “slimming”

As a medical doctor, what recommendations do you have for pregnant women who want to begin an exercise routine or continue exercising?

  • Dr. Chan: I would recommend pregnant women to stay active throughout pregnancy.  If you are not used to exercise, the best time to start is after the first trimester – when then fetus is more stable and not yet too big.  The aim of exercise should be to maintain reasonable cardio and muscular fitness, rather than for peak sports performance.  It is always a good idea consult your medical doctor regarding any concerns and make sure you are medically fit to exercise before you begin.

Dr. Raymond Chan

FitHealth

SPORTS MEDICINE · PHYSIOTHERAPY ·  FITNESS

Rm 1401, Causeway Bay Plaza 1, 489 Hennessy Road, Causeway Bay

Tel: 3904 3388

Fax: 3904 3389

www.fithealth.com.hk

http://hk.myblog.yahoo.com/fit-health

Filed under: Baby Care, Classes, Dads-to-be, Education, Exercise, Expectant Parents, Health pregnancy, Healthy Eating, maternity, pregnant, Prenatal Health, Prenatal tools, , , , , ,

I-pad Amazing for Fitness

Hello Fitness Buddies,

My sleek & chic i-pad just arrived from the US and I am pleased as punch!  After a quick charge, it connected seamlessly to the internet and I was off and running within seconds.  Without cables or complications, and large enough to truly use it (as opposed to a phone-sized gadget) I had an instant crush.  I held it in my hands ready to DO something cool.

First task: download favorite photos and do a little slide show.  Easy!

Second task:  Integrate this attractive new toy with my love of fitness and health.  Again – easy!  Sign up to i-tunes (free) and look in their store for tons of impressive applications designed for i-pods, i-pads, and i-phones.  Fitness and health applications are perfect for novice or expert fitness levels with information on personal training, workouts, individual exercises, calorie counters, pedometers, yoga moves, etc.  Below with a list of convenient applications to teach, motivate, and organize your workouts.  Since most applications cost just a few dollars, you have nothing to lose by trying them out on your path to getting healthier.

These creative and smart applications are sure to inspire and motivate you:

  1. i-trainer = $3.99
  2. All-in-Fitness = $1.99
  3. Interval Timer = $1.99
  4. Zigyt (agility training drills) $1.99
  5. Yoga spot (free and paid)
  6. Food Tracker Pro = $1.99
  7. Burn and Eat+ = $.99
  8. Wellness Calculator Suite = $1.99
  9. Pocket Yoga HD = $3.99
  10. MyNetDiary = $9.99
  11. Glycemic Index and Load = $3.99

With such reasonable application prices and easy to use tools, everyone can learn more about fitness and create their own strategy for exercise, health, and nutrition.   Yay!

Filed under: Classes, Education, Fitness - Motivation, Health, Healthy Eating, Losing Weight, Technology, , , , , , , , ,

Antenatal Classes – Hong Kong

Hello Parents-to-be,

Antenatal classes prepare you for labour, birth, and early parenthood.  At the same time, these classes are an ideal place to meet other parents and share information about their experiences since they are going through the same phases and changes that you are.  Here is a powerpoint slide presenatation from The Women’s Clinic in Hong Kong relevant to 3rd trimester complications and expectations; by Dr. Alexander K. Doo:  antenatal_classes.  If you are interested to attend antenatal classes in Hong Kong, consider the following locations: 

Adventist Hospital

http://www.hkah.org.hk

This private hospital runs a four-week Prepared Childbirth course (two-hour classes, once a week; $1,000) covering labor, relaxation and alternative pain relief techniques, delivery methods and breastfeeding. It also runs a two-hour baby care class for Home Helpers ($250).

Obstetrics Unit: 2835-0523; 40 Stubbs Road, Hong Kong; hkahinfo@hkah.org.hk; 3651-8888

 Annerley

Annerley offers a wide range of antenatal classes, focusing on natural childbirth, hypnobirthing, and more traditional antenatal classes, Babies and Beyond. It runs refresher courses for women expecting their second or subsequent child, as well as courses for mothers of twins. Most courses are five weeks, but semi-private Fast Forward courses are available that compress the lessons into two four-hour sessions. Annerley also runs antenatal checkup and motherand- baby clinics, postnatal visits, developmental assessments, a sleep clinic and lactation consultancy. The organization also runs a nanny agency.

1801 Car Po Commercial Building, 18-20 Lyndhurst Terrace, Central ; 2983-1558

 

Matilda International Hospital

http://www.matilda.org

Matilda runs a six-week parentcraft course explaining what to expect in the last weeks of pregnancy, giving birth, breastfeeding and giving tips on how to cope in the first weeks of a child’s life. It’s popular, and not just with those who give birth at the hospital, so book early (Health Education Dept: 2849-0357). Courses are held at the hospital, or the Matilda Medical Centre, Suite 2601, 9 Queen’s Road Central. Classes are held in English. Cantonese, Japanese and private lessons are available by arrangement. Prices include lecture notes and refreshments.

24-hour helpline: 2849-0123; 41 Mount Kellett Rd., The Peak; health@matilda.org ; 2849-0111

The Family Zone

http://www.thefamilyzone.hk

Set up by qualified British health visitor and Matilda Hospital midwife Yvonne Heavyside, the Family Zone offers Active Child Birth and Baby Basics courses, as well as post-natal home visits, parent childcare, domestic helper assessment, guardian service and more. Prices vary.

9887-3235 ; info@thefamilyzone.hk ; 2544-3399

YWCA English-Speaking Members Department

http://www.esmd.ywca.org.hk

Antenatal & Babycare Classes

Classes for parents including baby massage, first aid and CPR, effective parenting, cooking for infants and toddlers. Also classes for domestic helpers in basic baby/childcare, first aid and CPR, and more.

3/F 1 Macdonnell Rd., Mid-Levels; 3476-1340

 Source for classes found at:  http://www.thelist.com.hk/listings/family/antenatal-babycare-classes-0

Filed under: Baby Care, BabyBump, Classes, Education, Expectant Parents, Health, Health pregnancy, Hong Kong, Pregnancy, Pregnancy - Healthy Eating, Pregnancy Foods, pregnant, Prenatal Health, Prenatal tools, , , , , , , , , , , , ,

CPR and Domestic Helpers Courses for Baby Care – Hong Kong

Dear Friends,

When was the last time you took a CPR class?  After recently updating my CPR/AED certification, I firmly believe a few hours learning essential techniques to save the life of a loved one (or a stranger) is time well spent.  Everyone in the home should know how to properly perform CPR on infants, children, and adults in case of an emergency. 

Annerley in Hong Kong offers a special CPR course for infant and child life-saving techniques on Saturdays for 4.5 hrs, priced at for HKD$1,200.  Annerley also offers course for domestic helpers to learn about all aspects of baby care and safety in 6 x 2 hr sessions priced at $2,650.  http://www.annerley.com.hk/CPRHelpersCourses/  Due to the large amount of time that many domestic helpers spend with the children in the home, classes focused on child CPR, safety, and care will provide value to the entire family and offer your helper life-long skills from a trusted source. 

If you are interested to learn CPR and emergency care, many hospitals, medical centers, and government offices offer CPR/AED courses.  I recommend CPR courses through OPS studio on Stanley Street in Central (they run classes each month… upcoming August 4th CPR/AED class)  http://www.opstudiohk.com/course/index.php, or contacting the major hospitals or fire department for information on where you can learn CPR/AED and other critical first-aid information.

Stay safe  🙂

Filed under: Baby Care, Classes, Dads-to-be, Domestic Helper, Education, Expectant Parents, Health, Hong Kong, Pregnancy, Prenatal tools, , , , , , , , , , , ,