Team Tortoise are Cheryl, Min, Opus, Elaine and Carrie

5 torts making their slow and steady ascent up Mt Kinabalu...

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Training sessions: Bukit Timah Hill

Eh, where are the other training session blogs?

Monday morning bright and early was Bukit Timah Hill training for me and non-KK trip pal Cheryl (another Cheryl). We took the Green trail up (rated moderate to difficult) and did part of the Yellow trail loop and then came down the Yellow trail (rated difficult). The whole trip took roughly an hour.

The best part about training at Bukit Timah Hill is that I reckon it's going to be closer to the experience of climbing MK than training on staircases. The steps built into the hill are quite high (like those on MK, apparently) and you have to practise navigating rocks and mud and, well, nature. It was fun.

Overall, not to talk big, but Bukit Timah hill really isn't that tough. It's humbling to be reminded just how small and short our nation's highest point is! A bit sad. Nevertheless, some of the climbs up the steps were great workouts. I was wheezing the whole way (Cheryl bounded up).

The next time we go (yes, all of us!), I recommend a combination of the Green and Yellow trails too - think I've figured out what might be the most challenging route.


Photo may be blurry due to wheezing photographer.

28 June Team training #2

“This has to be the most preparation that I’ve ever done for a trip!” – Elaine

Training heated up with Lillian heading out to Bukit Timah Hill in the morning and the rest of us meeting at the Pinnacle in the evening to do staircases. On a Monday! Yes, that's dedication.

This was Cheryl’s first time at a staircase training session. Min told her that it would feel like hot yoga except that this was hotter and we were losing our fashion inhibitions - hiking boots, trekking poles and back packs.

After 20 storeys, the enemy isn't your aching legs, it's your own mind telling you to stop this insane activity.

At the 30 something storey, the peak of hardship and sweating, just where I feel like this is really really awful, Cheryl was keeping strangely quiet so I looked down and asked her if she was ok?

She looked up, cracking out a smile and her zen monk like reply both startling and delightful was:

Nothing, just thinking happy thoughts.

I don't know what those happy thoughts were. Maybe they were the chocolate tim tams in her bag, oyster omelette or ice kachang, but she had revealed her secret weapon, the mark of a true trouper. And this is why I am learning so much just climbing staircase from my other kick ass team mates who can, in the hardest of places, keep it going by thinking those happy thoughts.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Official Team Training #1: Pinnacle@Duxton

Team Training Woo!

Moving beyond the strange "lobby" of the building and the $5 charge to get to the Skybridge...

We hit the stairs (despite security uncle's best efforts to discourage us) and ascended 47 flights (we started on the 3rd floor for unknown reasons). Twice! Take that, security uncle!

It wasn't that bad but I suffered a really awful bad ache in my quads that night. Thankfully it was gone the next day!

Onward to the next challenge, tortoises.