Category Archives: Sports

Bike Lanes Around the Metro

Most Conducive Places to Bike in Metro Manila

While you’re waiting for our roads to become biker friendly, check out the spots around the Metro where you can safely bike to fitness.

Traffic in Metro Manila is getting unmanageable by the day. Thus, the proliferation of motorcycles or motorbikes on the streets, even in major thoroughfares. The bicycle, however, has not picked up to be considered as a serious means of transportation, except maybe for a couple of friends I know who bike their way to work.

But many in Metro Manila take the bike to stay fit or as part of a more extensive fitness routine.

So, where are the roads that are safe for biking? Lamudi Philippines takes a look at some recommended areas in the metro where you can stay fit by enjoying a bike ride.

The Commercial Route

It’s good that commercial and business development these days also includes suitable places for biking. These places have become ideal spaces to bike, thanks to the amount of room they’ve allocated for visitors and their resulting foot traffic, and being one of the more secure areas for leisurely activity.

1. SM Mall of Asia Complex

By Roberto Verzo, Flickr

The MOA Complex can be a little cumbersome during peak business hours, but it is quite a place to bike around early in the morning or late in the afternoon. The main area to bike around in is Sunset Blvd., which is at the back of the Mall of Asia and faces Manila Bay.

This track is approximately 1 kilometer long. A recommended route is to go around Blue Wave then back via the Mall of Asia main street where the large globe is located. Completing the route is just a little less than 5 kilometers.

2. Bonifacio Global City

By Alveo Land, Wikimdia Commons

Thanks to its well-thought-out urban planning, Bonifacio Global City is able to accommodate riders with dedicated bike-lanes. All this while the area continues to increase in population and continues to develop into the leading business district that it is.

While the area can be quite large, most of it is suitable for biking despite the sizable amount of foot traffic it also receives during peak hours. A route along 38th Street, in particular, is a good place to ride as the modest route offers climbs sufficient for training.

Community Rides

Of course there’s nothing better than logging miles in in an area that feels homey and is devoid of the distractions that come with commercial establishments. While it may come as a surprise to those who don’t live in the region, Metro Manila actually has a number of areas that provide that community atmosphere for riding.

1. University of the Philippines Diliman Academic Oval

By Ramon F Velasquez, Wikimedia Commons

Looking for a space for outdoor sports activities, it’s a definite must to include the UP Diliman Academic Oval. It is one of the most ideal biking areas in the metro. With dedicated lanes for runners and bikers alike, fitness enthusiasts can alternate their training with ease in the area.

Located near the Teacher’s Village inside the community-like campus, the oval is best for a weekend ride, as the dedicated lanes expand since the road is closed to all motor vehicles every Sunday. Measuring a total circumference of 2.2 kilometers, several laps around the oval is ideal for distance training.

2. Camp Aguinaldo, Quezon City
By Lt Jin Panganiban, Wikimedia CommonsThere are two ways that one can get a quick pedal workout inside Camp Aguinaldo. One is on the dirt-road racetrack found on the premises, ideal for those who are beginning to transition to mountain biking. The trails are short and technical, and are conveniently located near several food concessionaires, providing a convenient training ground for a mountain biker who can’t make it out of town.

The other way to ride in Camp Aguinaldo is to simply do so along its roads. Motor vehicles are made to maintain a modest speed limit due to their being in a camp, making it relatively safe for cyclists. Getting inside can be a little bit of a chore since proper identification is required, but a purpose is easy to provide since other cyclists do frequent the area.

Pedal Outward

Bike trails, and the surroundings in general, tend to become a little more photogenic when one moves farther out in Metro Manila. The less buildings and motor vehicles to contend with, the easier it is to ride faster, longer, and simply enjoy the activity more. There are a few notables in the outskirts and right outside the Metro Manila.

1. La Mesa Nature Reserve, Quezon City
By Wikimedia CommonsA bike-riding story on Metro Manila cannot be done without mentioning La Mesa Nature Reserve in Quezon City. Located northeast of Quezon City near SM City Fairview, this dense forest offers over 50 kilometers of tracks, dirt roads, and fire roads that can be traversed with a bike.

Probably its stand-out feature is how one can sometimes feel like they are so far away from the metro and truly enjoy their ride in nature, yet are still actually within the confines of the region. While devoid of clutter common in the city, the reserve has toilets, bike washes, a moving refreshment stand, and other conveniences that make it a rider’s dream.

2. Filinvest City, Alabang

By Jojo Nicdao, Flickr

While it can undoubtedly be included among the top in commercial biking routes, Filinvest City separates itself from the others for the reason that it has a substantial amount of greenery for a business district, and is one that actually includes bike paths in its master plan. The area is a popular location for various running and riding events as well.

Lush landscape, tree-lined pathways, and shaded canopies, coupled with modern conveniences just a couple steps away, and Filinvest City is indeed an ideal biking location for residents and visitors. Foot and vehicular traffic may get a little heavy because it is after all a commercial district, but it is comparatively easier to ride around in compared to busier parts of Metro Manila.

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Pilipinas Futbol Azkals at Pontefino Hotel and Residences Batangas City

 Pilipinas Futbol Azkals recently announced its partnership with Pontefino Hotel and Residences in Batangas City as its official hotel home in the country. Aside from this, Batangas City Mayor Eddie Dimacuha is also supporting the team by proposing a football field in Batangas City which will serve as their football practice field. Shown in photo are the members of the Pilipinas Futbol Azkals during the launch at Pontefino Hotel and Residences at Batangas City.

Brunch and Brawl for Pacquiao-Margarito Fight at Marriott Hotel Manila

The country will stop again for Manny “Pacman” Pacquaio‘s fight this Sunday, November 14th. Tickets of the fight I’m sure have been sold out much earlier. So if you’re someone who can’t miss one of Pacman’s fights, head for Velocity Sports Bar at Marriott Hotel Manila.

With its sleek and state-of-the-art sporting ambience, the Velocity Sports Bar of Marriott Hotel Manila brings you the biggest match of the season. The World Super Welterweight Championship will be beamed live from from  Dallas Cowboys Stadium Arlington Texas, USA from 8AM to 1PM.

The audience at Velocity Bar will surely experience a larger than life blow by blow adventure of the game in gigantic screens. Find out if Antonio Margarito will fall another victim to Pacquiao’s fist after celebrated victories over the likes of Juan Manuel Marquez, Oscar dela Hoya, and Ricky Hatton.

Take the viewing experience to a higher level with an inclusive ambrosial brunch buffet escapade, courtesy of Executive Chef Meik’s culinary choices: crispy bacon, corned beef, hash brown, garlic rice, Chinese bun, and Singapore noodles. The oven-fresh bakery section is also filled with an assortment of sweet and crisp bread choices which include pandesal, ensaymada, warm croissant, Danish bread roll, cheese cake, and apple tart. Wrap up the treat with a loadful of healthy fruits such as papaya, orange, watermelon, and mango. Then top it all off with creamy fruit yogurt, crunchy cornflakes and coco pops. Sip in indulgence free flow of San Miguel beer, soda or iced tea for only P1750 net or a choice of 2 San Miguel beer, iced tea, or soda for only P1500 net. Watch the nation’s sports hero with his biggest event of the year as he goes for the gold only at Velocity!

For inquiries or reservations, please call 988-9999 or visit www.marriott.com/mnlap

World Series: The “Freak” is a Fil-Am

The “Freak” is Tim Lincecum, the star pitcher of the San Francisco Giants. And he will start Game 1 of the World Series against the Texas Rangers. This two-time Cy Young awardee (American baseball’s most prestigious award, equivalent to NBA’s MVP) is on a historic mission to finally lead the Giants to a long drought of being World Champions. It was the Giants manager Bruce Bochy who coined this monicker precisely because of his looks that doesn’t resemble a Major League pitcher. He stands at 5’10”, and looking skinny in his 170lb frame and sporting a shaggy black hair.

More significantly, he is a Fil-Am; born to a full-blooded Filipina mother named Rebecca Asis whose grandfather was from Batangas. His grandmother, Anastacia Dominguez was born in my hometown Siquijor. (Read more on his family’s linkage in Phil. Star’s sports column of Quinito Henson.)

Baseball is america’s No.1 sport, ahead of American Football and way ahead of basketball. For a Fil-Am to be the star pitcher of a Mjor League team fighting for the World Series crown is a fantastic achievement and honor.

[Photo source]

2011 NBA Season: It’s Showtime Again

It’s “Showtime” once again when the 2011 NBA Season opened yesterday with 3 blockbuster games, featuring the NBA’s most talked about superstars.

Miami Heat, bolstered by Lebron James, Dwayne Wade, and Cris Bosh, all superstars, takes on former champs Boston Celtics in what could be a preview of the East top rivalry. The three are out to prove their worth and bring back the trophy last won when Shaquille O’Neal and newcomer Wade won it several years ago. The Celtics, always the sentimental favorite because of its legacy, and the rest of the teams are out to prove that 3 superstars doesn’t make a champion team. Despite Lebron’s 31 points, Miami lost, 88-80. Signs of the times?

Kobe Bryant and the defending champs Los Angeles lakers took on the Houston Rockets, bannered by the return of Yao Ming. The rockets pushed the Lakers to th limit, but in the end, the champs won by a hairline, 110-108. The Lakers remain the team to beat. On the 3rd game, Portland Trailblazers demolished Amare Stoudamire less (he moved to the New York Knicks) Phoenix Suns, 106-92.

With the teams going on trades during the break, this year will again be another exciting season. My fearless forecast: it will still be Lakers this year.

Go Skydiving in Australia!

If you’re into adventure and lots of nature, then you will surely enjoy Australia. That is what my husband told me. He went to Melbourne when we were still boyfriend and girlfriend, and had the time and circumstance been favorable, I would have gone with him.

But since we have a lot of friends there, the possibility of going back, with me tugging along this time, is not remote. Our friends have already been talking about going skydiving in Wollongong. Another group of friends also mentioned about a skydiving in Brisbane.

Well, we will try to go to Wollongong or Brisbane, but I know we will check out the skydiving in Sydney first. It will be like hitting two birds in one stone for me. I will not only see The Sydney Opera House but also get to skydive.

But before I do go skydiving and feel the adrenalin rush at 200kph, I’ll have to beef up on my skydiving skills, and prepare myself.

Here’s a word of caution from Dropzone:

“Skydiving accidents rarely result from equipment failure or bad luck. Remember: knowledge, skill and attitude. It’s about you as the individual. Even though this is a dangerous sport, if you exercise your new skills, keep your cool and do everything you’re taught to do, you should be fine.”

Vuvuzela at the 2010 FIFA World Cup

If you’re like my husband and kids who love watching football, then you’re following the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa.

During the early games, we were watching a match but all we heard was a loud droning-sound. We thought it was the sound system of the station or the coverage was bad. It was really bad!

Then later on we found out that the sound was produced by a vuvuzela, a three-foot long horn that emits a loud sound. And it’s part of South African culture to play this. But what if it hinders players and audience alike from concentrating and enjoying the games?

Find out more about vuvuzela HERE.

Image Source

CityKart Racing Opens at Park Square 1, Makati

Kart racing enthusiasts out there, head for Level 5 7, Park Square 1, Ayala Center, Makati now. The CityKart Racing has just opened an outlet there.

Schedule:

Weekdays (Monday to Thursday): 3:00 pm – 10:00 pm

Weekends (Friday to Sunday): 10:00 am – 10:00 pm

I took this photo quickly as we were going out the parking one night. Will take better photos one of these days. 😉

When BJ Armstrong, the Bull’s Guard, Came to Town

by guestblogger, Nono Delid who blogs at Steel Connect

It’s not too often that you get to see in the flesh the NBA stars. Kobe Bryant came for a Nike event at Bonifacio High Street and went without us even seeing his shadow. When All Star Agent Zero, a.k.a. Gilbert Arenas of the Washington Wizards came to Adidas in Powerplant Mall in Rockwell two summers ago, we had to carry our kids in our arms for a good one hour just for them to get a glimpse of him; all we saw were all heads of the other fans wanting and pushing in front.

So, Saturday, April 17 was a great day for us when we got our invitation to be among the select few who will meet and greet BJ Armstrong at Marriott Hotel Manila‘s Velocity Bar. Thanks to Michelle Garcia, Marketing Communications Manager of Marriott Hotel Manila for the invite!

BJ Armstrong (BJ stands for Benjamin Jr.), was a one time All Star guard (1994) who played along with the great Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen of the great Chicago Bulls during their first magnificent 3-peat run as NBA champions from 1991-94. Playing out of University of Iowa, BJ Armstrong was Chicago’s 1st round draft pick and 18th overall during the 1989 NBA draft. Standing at 6’2″ and playing point guard, he was directing the plays of the Bulls frontline, at the same time, dishing out treys in clutch plays. In fact, during the 1992-93 season, he was the three point king.  After Chicago, he played for Golden State, Toronto, Orlando and finally went back to Chicago. His last NBA game was a memorable one, as he revealed in an earlier interview with sports analyst/columnist Quinito Henson. As a Bull once again, they played a road game in Detroit (Michigan), his home city. At present, BJ, as an agent,  handles several players, including Derrick Rose, Chicago’s superstar and 2009 NBA rookie of the year. Interestingly, some of his Chicago’s lesser known teammates played in our PBA. His contribution to basketball, especially in teaching the young kids the foundation and fundamentals of basketball brought him here in here in Manila as a special guest of NBA Asia, to promote their Jr, NBA program where kids 12-14 years old are trained under the watchful and expert handlinng of their coach, Frank Lopez.

Frank  Lopez was with BJ’s party last Saturday, and as the crowd zoomed on BJ, I approached him as he was sipping his drink alone. Dressed like an NBA referre, Frank says, he has  worked with the NBA for many years now. He started with the Orlando Magic organization way way back, when Shaq O’Neal and  Penny Hardaway were still there. They hold playing sessions at the Jose Rizal University gym and he’s ably assisted  by past PBA stars, like Benjie Paras, Ronnie Magsanoc, and Elmer Cabahug.This week, they must have already chosen their top 8 players from among the pool of 40 players.

Another NBA  man we met at Marriott’s Velocity Bar was a pleasant  guy, whom despite his impeccable English accent and all, while conversing with the foreigner guests, we knew all along was a Filipino. His business card says Carlo Singson,  the Senior Manager, Business Development and Marketing Partnerships, NBA Asia, Limited with office listed in Hong kong. Carlo was born and grew up here, studied high school in La Salle Greenhilss but finished his college degree in the US. When asked who so far is their greatest product in this Jr. NBA program, he mentioned Keifer Ravena, star of the champion Ateneo Blue Eaglets team and  son of a PBA great, Bong Ravena of the Purefoods team. And oh yes, how could we miss Jama Mahlalela, the good-looking Director of Basketball Operations of NBA Asia, Limited who wooed the crowd with his dashing looks.

Back to BJ, he says he’s going back to the US in time for Game 3 of the Celtics-Bulls 1st round play-off match. When I asked his opinion on the chances of the East’s 8th seeded Bulls against the league leading top seed Cavs of King (Lebron James), he just raised a thumbs up sign. Well maybe, it as just for good luck for  his beloved Bulls squad (who is a  definite underdog),  to prevent a 4-0 sweep by a team tipped to go all the way to the finals. But there’s one thing we both agree: it’s still going to be a Laker and Kobe’s year.

Here are photos for posterity’s sake. 😀