My poor Garmin (part 2)

Wrist Strap Kit Garmin

Hey there! For those who have read the first post about my poor Garmin, I have good news.  I finally had some time today to drive across the border.  The line up was long but thank God for Nexus that I was able to go on the special lane bypassing everybody else and went through the border in less than 10 mins!   I was excited to grab the new wrist strap for my dying Garmin 405.  Having seen the recent news about the latest Garmin 620, I was very tempted and even more eager to get a new one!  But for spending over $400, I just couldn’t do it while my 405 is still working perfectly fine.

Anyhow, I got to the post office, received my package, ripped open it like a child opening presents on boxing day, and was really happy for what I saw.  For $20, I didn’t really care about if it were after-market or not; actually, I was really thinking it was going to be some cheap after market product.  But what the heck, I mean as long as it’d fit my watch and let me run longer with my Garmin I was alright with it!   To my surprise, the product is actually a genuine Garmin manufactured product!  As you can see on the box, you get two straps of your choice.  One is for larger wrist and the other for smaller.  I chose the latter as the former sticks out a little on my rather small wrist.   I would label myself as a mechanically challenged person so I simply followed the instruction manual step-by-step.  The whole thing took me probably about 30 minutes to install.  I think the hardest part was actually to take off the original straps.  It was disgusting as there were so much gunk and debris trapped in the crevice between the strap and the watch. I took a cotton tip and got that cleaned out.  Next, I put on the two adapters onto the old pins and inserted the new pins to secure the new strap!  Viola! my Garmin 405 is back alive!  I immediately put it on and I think it’s actually lighter and a little snugger to my liking!  The bottom line is I saved probably about over few hundred dollars!

Garmin Fixed

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My poor Garmin

Recently, I’ve been quite frustrated and overly disappointed at my Garmin 405 wrist strap breaking up repeatedly and after countless efforts of gluing the tears. In one instance (the first 20130917-140748.jpgbreak), I even carelessly glued a fragment of my finger tip’s skin on it (ouch!). And on the very last tear, I was about to give up and gave myself a legitimate excuse to get a new one. Upon checking out the prices of the new Garmin (e.g 610), they do cost an arm and a leg! I figure since the watch is still working perfectly fine, there must be some way to replace the straps. After some Internet research, I found that Garmin in Canada charges for about $79.99 (way too much!!!) to replace them. would be my next best bet and I was right on this time! In addition to the regular strap that was on the watch, they carry this wrist strap that is made out of polyester utilizing Velcro. Plus, this particular product does have a pretty awesome reviews from its buyers! The best of all for me is the reasonable cost at $20. I’ll pick them up soon! Stay tuned for more updates!






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How to dress for your run! A great web-tool!

running in the rain

Hello Runners,

The season is changing!  The weather here in Vancouver fluctuates so much that one day is dry and warm and the other is pouring and cold!  It leaves us runners to be at times frustrated on how to dress up appropriately for our runs (especially the long ones).

I’m here sharing an excellent web-tool I found on the Runners’ World website that should alleviate a lot of our problem in choosing the proper wears for the appropriate weather out there!   Here’s the link:

Happy running in the rain!


Win a pair of Skechers’ runners!

Skechers logo

Exciting news!  For those who have signed up for the upcoming I Will Run for a Good Cause Fall 2013 program,  you have a chance to win a pair of Skechers’ runners!

More details to come!  Thank you Skechers for the awesome sponorship!


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Vancouver Eastside 10K Race- My first 10K race as a father and a sponsored runner !

Today marks a list of first timers for me! All are exciting stuffs! To begin, it was my first race since fatherhood of almost five months ago. Ever since I knew baby Race was coming, family would be and shall always be the top priority over almost all things! I was ready to set aside my marathon training and running group for a while (may be just a short while!). Having been through the ordeal of being overweight, I am reluctant to forsake running. Instead of training after work which I had been doing for the past couple years, I began running for about 10k for about 40-45mins during work lunch hours. To make this possible, I made a huge switch in life from eating solid food to drinking green smoothies. There were few occasions that the smoothie fermented, producing gas and a weird odor. Surprisingly, I was never left with an upset stomach.

In light of all these changes, an exciting news in life for me was to meet up with Alex (Skechers’ western Canada representative), who is gracious enough to sponsor me with some new sneakers and a free entry for the Vancouver Eastside 10K race organized by the Canadian Running Series. Guess what, this was actually my very first 10k race. It was also my first time running with a pair of Skecher’s Go Speed in an official race event!



For those who live in Vancouver, most would know that the weather lately was superbly beautiful and warm! For me, however, I don’t normally run too well in this kind of weather. The moment I woke up this morning (515am), I was a little excited as I saw the dark skies. After some reading, eating breakfast, and easy warm ups, it was already 630 and I still didn’t see the sun. Even the moment as I was writing this post (5pm), the sun still hadn’t come out! So, I’m thankful to say that it was really the perfect condition to run a race! I took public transit from home to race site. There were already many runners getting ready when I arrived at 730am. Some were lining up for the gear check, some were warming up and some were just mingling with others. I quickly checked in with my sponsor Alex at the Skechers booth before heading to gear check. For warm up, I ran around the block for about 10-15 mins and did a few short sprints before cooling down to doing some active stretching. The start line of the race was right on the Dunsmuir via duct. I was able to recognize few of the elite runners immediately as they were warming up on the bridge. It was exciting to see Dylan Wykes (Olympic runner, who also won today’s race!), few world champion runners as well as some of the local elite runners such as Drew Nicholson, Stan Jang, David Palermo and many more!


I began moving into my designated corral (sub 50) at about 15 minutes before the race. I was surprised to see that there was a 40min pacer. My strategy initially was to run slow for the first three KMs at about 4:05min/km, pick up speed to about 3:55min/km from 4KM and maintain that pace till the end. Instead, my pace bunny started out pretty quick and the group was going at about 3:40min/km. I felt fine…so what the heck and I just stuck with him. He did an awesome job by motivating us at various times, warning us for rail tracks, puddles, and other obstacles, and I was amazed at how he thanked all the volunteers and spectators as we ran through the race. It turned out my pacer had a better strategy than I did. He knew the course was much harder towards the end as it turned to become quite hilly, so he wanted to buy time for us in the beginning to run faster and to compensate the time at the hilly end.


I probably stuck with the 40min group for a good 7km and began pacing myself a little quicker as I really wanted to hit that sub-40 goal. The hill training I’ve done in the past really did pay off in today’s race. As most people were grasping for air at those hills, I felt motivated to run faster in each of them. The final 1km was not easy as the route was entirely up hill which led up to the via duct for about a KM before hitting the finishing line. I took a quick peek at my Garmin which read 36 something minutes and I was left with about 950m to finish up. There was a very high possibility that I was about to run over the 40min mark. Physically I was exhausted but I was telling myself I could do this. There wasn’t really anyone behind me as I was able to past most runners on the uphill section and there wasn’t really anyone in front either. I just imagined myself doing speed work on tracks with those dreadful repeats at mile pace. Within about half a KM approaching the finish, I was unsure where the actual line was because of my short-sighted vision and the mild foggy condition. My Garmin had already beeped at 10KM, while I still hadn’t finished the race! I knew I had to sprint even faster and I glad I did. Yes! When I could finally see the clock, it was more than 30 sec shy of the 40 minute mark! Thank you Skechers for providing me with a pair of awesome shoes! The GoMeb or Go Speed really helped me to achieve this sub- 40 goal!

Viola! that was my first 10KM run! In retrospect, I am really thankful that I didn’t give up running altogether while not sacrificing my priority on family life. I guess sometimes we just have to work with our circumstance and make the best out of it!

Eastside 10K

Hope to see you all at the I Will RUN for a Good Cause Fall 2013 running group next week!



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The Sauna Effect? What do you think?

J Sci Med Sport. 2007 Aug;10(4):259-62. Epub 2006 Jul 31.

Effect of post-exercise sauna bathing on the endurance performance of competitive male runners.


University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand.


The physiological adaptations to sauna bathing could enhance endurance performance. We have therefore performed a cross-over study in which six male distance runners completed 3 wk of post-training sauna bathing and 3 wk of control training, with a 3 wk washout. During the sauna period, subjects sat in a humid sauna at 89.9+/-2.0 degrees C (mean+/-standard deviation) immediately post-exercise for 31+/-5 min on 12.7+/-2.1 occasions. The performance test was a approximately 15 min treadmill run to exhaustion at the runner’s current best speed over 5 km. The test was performed on the 1st and 2nd day following completion of the sauna and control periods, and the times were averaged. Plasma, red-cell and total blood volume were measured via Evans blue dye dilution immediately prior to the first run to exhaustion for each period. Relative to control, sauna bathing increased run time to exhaustion by 32% (90% confidence limits 21-43%), which is equivalent to an enhancement of approximately 1.9% (1.3-2.4%) in an endurance time trial. Plasma and red-cell volumes increased by 7.1% (5.6-8.7%) and 3.5% (-0.8% to 8.1%) respectively, after sauna relative to control. Change in performance had high correlations with change in plasma volume (0.96, 0.76-0.99) and total blood volume (0.94, 0.66-0.99), but the correlation with change in red cell volume was unclear (0.48, -0.40 to 0.90). We conclude that 3 wk of post-exercise sauna bathing produced a worthwhile enhancement of endurance running performance, probably by increasing blood volume.

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