Tuesday, 26 February 2013


After only having been running for 4 1/2 months, it's already time for our CrossFit Box to grow. In preparation for knocking down the wall to the space they've acquired next door, they had shuffled things around in the Box, and most importantly - moved the big rig during the weekend.
It used to be in the middle of the room, now it's placed all along one wall; which makes a lot more sense and already have freed up a lot more space in the Box.

It's really cool that CrossFit has taken off so well here in Brunei. I'm very happy for the Reebok CrossFit 673 Team. They deserve every bit of success because they are truly dedicated, and have been working really hard in creating this great CrossFit community; which I am proud to be a part of. I look forward to coming each session, I enjoy each session (well, maybe not right in the middle of them, but certainly when they are done..!) and I've made some great new friends through the training too.

(Sam, Lee & Pippa trying out the new layout.)

Progression. It's what it's all about. 
I am happy to say that personally I'm also experiencing some big progress at the moment.

I'm not quite sure what has suddenly clicked.
Maybe it's simply the normal "after-a-few-months-is-when-you-start-seeing-the-results" development; maybe it's the fact that I've amped up my amount of CrossFit sessions from twice a week to at least 3, sometimes 4 times a week?
It could be that I've started a bit of a nutrition drive, with some extra protein intake? Or it could simply just be that when we now are starting repeat workouts and benchmarks, it all becomes more clear and measurable how much stronger I've got!
Whatever it is, I feel that I'm on a roll!

I don't lift anywhere near what some of the other girls do, or am near as fast. But you know what?
It doesn't matter!
Because I'm way faster than I used to be, and I can lift way more than I could before! I'm certainly getting much stronger, and I'm enjoying it!

I haven't lost any weight since I started doing CrossFit, although, I have lost nearly 2% body fat since the middle of January; which in my case corresponds to transforming nearly 3 lbs (=1,5kg) of fat into muscle! Let's hope this roll I'm on will last for a while yet..! :)

"Strive for progress. Not perfection".

CNY Hash

Last week we celebrated Chinese New Year at the Hash. One of my favourite runs of the year actually, the Chinese ladies always make sure it's a very nice evening.
When we came back from the jungle we were treated with oranges:

When the hares had laid the run earlier that day, they had spotted this little creature and it's baby in a tree:

It's a tarsier. It's a primate only found in Southeast Asia. Normally these are nocturnal animals, so the hares were very lucky to spot one! They are small animals with enormous eyes, each eyeball is about 16mm in diameter, as large as it's entire brain. They have very soft, velvety fur which is generally buff or beige in colour. How amazing is that to have seen one so close!

Anyway, back to the run. The tent and the food table was decorated beautifully, as always at this run:

One of my favourite happenings on this run, is the "tossing of the food"! :)
Well, it's actually called Yusheng, or the Prosperity Toss. The tray of food usually consists of strips of raw fish, mixed with shredded vegetables and a variety of sauces and condiments, among other ingredients.
Yusheng is considered a symbol of abundance, prosperity and vigor and it's consumption is associated with Chinese New Year festivities.

The Yusheng is often served as the appetizer due to its symbolism of "good luck" for the new year. All diners at the table stand up and on cue, proceed to toss the shredded ingredients into the air with chopsticks while saying various "auspicious wishes" out loud. It is believed that the height of the toss reflects the height of the diner's growth in fortunes, so you are expected to toss enthusiastically. And so we did!!
Everybody got to take turns, and we tossed and tossed! 

A group photo of our H3 Hash, mostly dressed in red for the CNY celebrations! Gong Xi Fa Cai!

As it's Tuesday today, it's hash night again! Although tonight's hash will be the first one in quite a while that isn't celebrating anything special, no birthdays, no nothing. Just a normal hash, if there ever is such a thing!

Monday, 25 February 2013

Dedicated dance mums

Today, on our extra day off, four of the dance mums met up to get our girls together to practice for the upcoming exam next weekend. And yes, it was a serious rehearsal, no time for fooling around.
We made the girls perform for us, all the exercises, drills and dances that they will be tested on this weekend, from one end to the other. Over and over again for about an hour - a total run-through!

Are we dedicated dance mums or what? Maybe we can get our own reality show soon too? :)

Weekend fail

This weekend was another extra long weekend. Since it was the Brunei National Day on Saturday we had an extra day off school today, in lieu.

Nathan and I are off to Hong Kong next weekend for a wedding, so I had planned some sunning time this weekend - but that turned into a total fail...

Both Friday, yesterday and today have been overcast and rainy. Actually only Saturday was a sunny day but then of course our schedule was full with other things preventing me from getting to my sunbed at the Yacht Club...
Arrrghhh! Where's the sun when you need it??!

Sunday, 24 February 2013


'The Borneo Insider's Guide', or as it's commonly referred to - 'The biG magazine' is a great quarterly magazine we have here in Brunei. It aims to share with it's readers the best there is to offer on lifestyle and travel in Borneo and beyond. I always try to get hold of the latest issue, because it truly is a great source of information, even for residents. Lots of interesting articles and tips on where to go and eat etc.
And, the best things is - it's distributed free all over the country!

In the latest January-March 2013 issue, they have an article about the fitness bug that is spreading in the country and in the article they are interviewing four big fitness personalities in town.
Recognize anybody?

Yes, it's "my" Susan, talking about Zumba - AND on the same page our CrossFit coach Mike, pictured at the Box. Great interviews of both of them, and fab pics too!

Exam time!

Linnea has been really busy lately (and me too, driving her back and forth), since there is another very important dance exam coming up. Or rather - three of them!
It's all happening next weekend, with an official examiner flying in from overseas. Unfortunately the little dancing girls haven't really been able to fit in all the dance practice they need, due to public holidays and other things. So lately quite a few extra practice hours have been penciled in.

This morning (yes, Sunday morning at 8.30am!) we had to meet at the Dance Studio in full exam wear, for a mock exam practice, just like last time. Here's Linnea and Jamie, more full of beans than graceful dancers! :)

Also we've all received the DVDs of the exam dances, so that the girls can practice at home. It's serious business this dancing you see!

Saturday, 23 February 2013

Who am I?

I went to the Junior School Assembly yesterday morning, since it was hosted by Linnea's class this week. They did it in three parts, first they played a bit of music they had learned in music class:

Then they talked about the Kate Greenaway Medal, what it is and how it came to be. And finally they acted out the story from the book "Who am !?" by Tony Ross.

On a hot day in the middle of the jungle a cute little animal hatches out of an egg:

The story follows this strange little creature as he tries to discover who he is. He asks all sorts of animals but nobody can help him. Here he is talking to the tall giraffe:

The giraffe tells him:
-"I am the tallest animal in the whole wide world, but I do not know what sort of creature you are."

He also meets some snarling cheetahs:


In the end, the little creature's Mummy saves him from a hungry crocodile, and he finally finds out what he is - a chameleon!

Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Best Words ever!

Every week at the Hash a "newsletter" gets sent out to all members, called the 'Hash Words'. It contains the normal info about the run of the week, which is site and length etc, but also additional info if needed - f.e about tonight, that we need to wear red for the on-on, since it's the yearly Chinese New Year run.
This newsletter also contains other information related to the Hash, and some not Hash related, like nice recipes, jokes and other bits and pieces.

One of the duties of the hares is to do a write up about the previous run, for those hens who weren't there, and for the Hash records. Usually it's exactly that, a write up. Sometimes it can be quite funny or with a twist, but so far I've never seen it as good as this week's:

Well done on an amazing illustration! On on!

Monday, 18 February 2013

Special wash

Finally I managed to get Linnea to the hairdresser today for a trim. Her hair was in deep need of a bit of a tidy up, I can't even remember when we last took her...
Anyway, since we came straight from school and she had been running around getting sweaty all day, I asked if they could just quickly wash her hair before cutting.

I never stop to amaze at the way they do it here - IN the chair! Which Linnea obviously thought was hilarious, since it was the first time she had it done at a salon.

Another picture of the same thing, here's Beenal the other day. Our kids had a birthday party at one of the indoor play parks in the Mall; so we took the opportunity to have our hair done at the same time! Life of leisure I tell you!

But now I'm seriously curious, is this common practice anywhere else..? Washing your hair sitting up in the chair? And with all that foamy stuff? Maybe I just haven't traveled enough, because I have never had this done neither in Europe or Australia/NZ.
It's not at all that I prefer one or the other, either way is fine with me. I'm just curious as to why they do it this way here? Please enlighten me!

On on - and on on..!

The 50 years of Hashing celebrations continued on Sunday afternoon, with a run especially organized by the BH3 Men's Hash, for the whole family. They had over 150 kids signed up for this one!

I promoted the Ladies Hash with a little flyer I had made - "Make Tuesday night YOUR night!" :)

After the briefing, off we went. There was three different runs - Lucas and Nathan went up the big hill to go on the long one, Linnea and I followed the blue paper to do the medium one.
The horn from the BH3 Men's Hash was present here too. I like this horn, it's so cool, like a military reveille or bugle call - made us feel like we were going into battle!

At one stage our medium run on the blue paper joined up with the long run, on white paper:

So Lucas and Nathan caught up with us!

So did the horn! He kept blowing it all through the jungle!

It was a really nice run. As usual on the Kids Hash, the tempo isn't that fast so you actually have time to enjoy the walk, look around you and discover the beauty of the jungle. Normally when we run on our Hash, you have to pay attention to where to put your feet!
We had to cross some water and mud:

When we came out, the kids received new green t-shirts and also some celebratory 50 years of Hashing cookies! Yum yum!

As we figured we would be at the shout-up a little bit longer this time, we had our dinner there (instead of the traditional Sunday pizza order), kids had fish and chips and Nathan and I some shawarma, mmm!

Then they started the shout-up. Slightly more subdued this afternoon than it was the day before... :)

Usual proceedings though. The hares were called up and got their down-down, so did the JM of the Kids Hash, Amanda - just like us other JMs had been the day before:

Jokes were told, again, a bit more family friendly; a birthday song was sung and the Hashit was dished out, BH3 style...

Another great Hash event! We are really lucky to be here in Brunei to experience this big occasion.
Happy Hashiversary BH3!