Brunei Darussalam

Altra Lone Peak 4.0

This is not a Lone Peak 4.0 review, the shoes have just arrived from Running Warehouse and it came easily two sizes up from my current Lone Peak 3.5. To begin with the 3.5 in size 12 US isn’t all that spacious, so I was under the impression (from several reviews) that the LP 4.0 would run small so naturally getting one size up would be quite safe. Little did I realize that the 4.0 actually runs bigger so now I have them in what appears to be two sizes up — to say the toe box has a lot of wriggle room would be quite the understatement. The immediate thing I liked about the 4.0 is how soft and comfortable the front is, also very wide like how I remember the Superior 2.0 is — and the narrower midfoot and heel that keeps the foot in place.

Malaysia

Bayan Atuh Trail Ultra 2018

The first time my family and I traveled to Kuching was in March 2017,  purpose was to visit a university that had accepted my son’s application for a Bachelor degree in electrical engineering. Unfortunately for me, I had a bad sore through and was running an uncomfortable fever during the trip, food wasn’t particularly exciting in my condition and walkabouts in the city on a sunny day, well, you know how the rest of the day went.

Fast forward a year to April 2018, I signed up for the Bayan Atuh Trail Ultra 50K in Kuching organised by Grit Event Management, the same weekend as Cameron Ultra 2018. I had no expectations of how the event would turn out for me, my only qualifications (similar distance and total ascent) were having previously completed TMBT 50K in 2016/2017, Cameron Ultra 55K in 2017 and BUTM 2018 50K.

I did however have one concern and that exactly a year ago, during Cameron Ultra, I suffered searing knee pain on both legs after the 15km mark only to struggle the remaining 36km with something I later learned was Iliotibial band syndrome, commonly referred to as ITBS. I had logged 7,700m of climbs that month without sufficient rest in between.

Visit Bayan Atuh Trail Ultra’s official Facebook page for many more race day photos to wet your appetite for their 2019 edition. 50K flagged-off in the dark and also finished the same so I relied on the photo sets from various photographers to see what I had missed that day.

15 hours and close to 50km later at Bayan Atuh Trail Ultra, my total climb for July 2018 came to 9,100m (1,400m more than the previous year), and I was relieved and delighted at the same time to have finished the grueling race with no injury other than much needed rest to make up for how early we began our journey from the hotel to the jetty to the start line.

Because this was Grit’s first ultra trail event, curiosities arose as to whether this 50K was easier or tougher than TMBT’s 50k. I made the comparison purely for fun as we all know numbers alone only provide one side of a race course’s story — the other side needs to be lived out however challenging it becomes in reality.

Brunei Darussalam

Power Outage and Resume Notifier

If you’ve ever had to be away from home for an extended period of time with no one else staying there, the greatest fear besides having the house broken into is a power outage that can potentially ruin everything that’s inside your refrigerator. A temporary power failure that doesn’t trip the main circuit breaker is not too bad since when the power resumes, power to the fridge is restored automatically.

My home recently suffered one such unfortunate incident. It was during my son’s mid semester break from uni and he left a reasonably stocked fridge to stay with us. I have two IP cams at the house that I check every now and then, both working until the day we visited to spend a long weekend holiday there. There was no power and the circuit breaker had tripped leaving the whole house without power — the fridge had been left without power long enough that when we got there the freezer was warm and an overpowering stench (from thawed meat and other food items) quickly permeated the kitchen and living room.

Two days on my wife and I, after doing everything we could to deodorize every nook and cranny of the fridge, were still looking for a way to prevent a re-occurrence. At first this looked pretty convincing (we were also desperate):

It didn’t take long to figure out that the long term costs involved don’t quite make sense. Later that week, I started looking for alternatives and came across two promising Android apps and settled on Power Failure Monitor. I installed the app on a retired Samsung Galaxy S3 and connected to the home Wi-Fi (without a SIM card). Read how I got everything setup and working beautifully — without needlessly spending a lot of money on this.

Without a SIM card the phone is unable to directly send SMS alerts. To address that, I use a Chrome Extension Gmail SMS Alerts to automatically (service is free) recognize the emails sent by Power Failure Monitor app and convert that to an SMS text message.

Drop me a line if you have found this solution useful.