1 More Month To Viper Challenge

Well, less than a month actually.

I had been away from my regular gym training for two weeks when I was giving Musemancer the kickstart. Since the team is in its infancy, I have to be in the office most of the time before my team matures and knows how to run the day-to-day operations of our digital publishing business.

Until then, I have to train in the evenings and on my own on some nights.

In spite of being away for two weeks, surprisingly I achieved a new PR!

[In This Training Cycle, Every Rep Has A 1 Second Pause]

Bench Press: 114 lbs x 4-6 reps x 4 sets

Shoulder Press: 30 lbs each hand x 6-8 reps x 4 sets

Squats: 130 lbs x 6 reps x 4 sets

All excluding warm ups. My body weight hasn’t changed i.e. 132 lbs give or take. I seem to work better with longer rest in between i.e. 2-3 minutes. Although any longer than that and my body would shut down and get lazy. LOL

I felt better this past week after taking antacid for gastric relief which has been constantly affecting me for the past two years. YEAAA

Will keep my training consistent until Viper Challenge on November 1.

20 kilometers. 22 obstacles.

Never jogged or walked 20km before, so this is going to be a first!

Static Line Jump No. 6

Time flies too fast! I still remember the last two jumps I did here as if it happened not long ago – but that was 1 1/2 years ago. After many postponed weekends for many reasons – unavailable aircraft, poor weather, and recently the Hari Raya mood – the KL Skydiving Association got around organizing static-line jumps again!

Stayed overnight at Segamat and made sure I clocked in at least 2 more jumps. Was gunning for 4 so I could make a nice 10 under my belt, but there were many other first timers and also experienced skydivers from abroad who came here.

And with just one Cessna aircraft taking to the air, everyone had to take turns. Anyways glad to do it and good to know I grew less and less anxious and fearful with every jump.

I got my exit done perfectly on the last jump with no twist encountered! Landing still isn’t consistent as I reverted to landing on my ass – was coming in too fast.

Until the next jump! And in due time, I will be up for Accelerated FreeFall (AFF)…

SHORT ACTION FILM: HVT Run

I didn’t want to announce this until I was sure it was complete – and here it is! During the Raya season I collaborated with a group of friends to direct and produce a short action film of our own.

Presenting… HVT Run!

Behind The Scenes And Bloopers:

In 2011 and 2012, I made two attempts to put out a short action film for the fun of it. Even though we shot the pre-production footages – painstakingly – they never got past post-production because we were hinging our hopes on one guy to do it… and well… he sucks balls.

That was in spite of working with the likes of Dan Khoo, Joseph Germani and JinnyBoyTV on the second round and at the time, it seemed so surefire that the short action film will be out.

I was upset about it though I know that the opportunity will come again, and I will do it myself when I meet the right group of people and find someone reliable to do the post-production, even if it means paying my way through for a non-profit film.

And I finally did this time!

So in more ways than one, I feel accomplished that the completion of this piece has redeemed me of my past failed attempts, YES!

It’s not without its mistakes but then again, which movie makes no mistakes? Haha!

I look forward to making more like this in the near future, when I am not working. 🙂

Operation White Rhino 2 MILSIM

IMG_7109Yep that’s what I am here for.

Since I had to come to Indonesia to meet my IM associates in Jakarta and Bandung, I figured I might as well spend the weekend and experience Indonesian MILSIM for the second time. In the first 24 hour game last year, I fell sick later at night so I missed half the fun so I was determined to see myself through the rest of this 24 hour airsoft game.

My first stop was in Jakarta to meet Dee Ferdinand and his Calibreworks team and I spent my first 4 days here. Also got to check out the airsoft stores at STC Senayan Mall.

IMG_7085 IMG_7086 IMG_7087

While there are more variety of military gears and clothing here compared to Malaysia, the prices are very expensive! It’s still better to buy your stuffs online – or go on a shopping trip in Hong Kong.

IMG_7108

BTW this picture you’re seeing now? Those aren’t airsoft guns; they are Air Guns (yep there’s a difference). Shoots their own custom pellets, designed for small game hunting and if uses against human targets it can prove to be lethal too.

Not only are these air guns being sold openly, apparently you don’t need to have a permit to use them! As long as you have a ton of cash to spend – and A LOT OF IT.

On Saturday, I met up with one of the airsofters from Palembang, Dovi Spectrum, at the Jakarta airport and we both took a cab to the game site at Yonif 320 Badak Putih in Banten, which is 2 1/2 hours away from the city.

We arrived at about 10 in the morning and registered ourselves. On first impression, I think this MILSIM experience is going to be better than the last already!

IMG_7119

While waiting for the rest of the players from all around Java to show up, the badasses of Yonif 320 treated us to real steel shooting. 🙂
IMG_7123

Eventually, all the teams showed up and there were 130-140 players total participating in the weekend game.

I am beginning to catch onto Indonesia’s MILSIM tradition and format of the game; they started off with an opening ceremony – the regular army of the camp (Yonif means “battalion infantry”) would officially give permission to the Airsoft organization – Federasi Airsoft Indonesia or F.A.I. – to use their premise for war games (another synonymous term for ‘airsoft skirmish’).

IMG_7141

After the ceremony, everyone had a quick lunch and the first day game begins. This would go on until evening when everyone rests, have dinner, and enjoy ourselves at a mini carnival.

Night game resumes at 10:00 PM until 5:00 AM. And I must say, the best part of the MILSIM was the night game!

IMG_7187

Flares and explosives were shot every now and then throughout the night to illuminate the fog of war and as a bonus, add to the ambience LOL This time, I stayed throughout and I give myself a pat on the back for this 🙂

The next morning, everyone packed up, exchanged our badges and honors, take more team photos and then parted ways for our own destination. Oh yeah, I even got to shoot their Pindad SS-1 assault rifle – the standard issue weapon of Indonesia’s regular army:

Overall it’s been a great 24 hours of fun at the camp – and a great way to start the middle month of the year. 🙂 Besides the airsoft games, we got to shoot real steel, even get to have a mini carnival and the night game experience so far is unbeatable by my previous experience.

IMG_7206

You are looking at my biggest badge exchange so far… and this is just teams from all around Java section of Indonesia!

Some more pictures from the event:

Thanks Federasi Airsoft Indonesia for inviting me to this event and even gave me a souvenir just for coming from Malaysia; the Badasses of Yonif (Batalyon Infanterie) 320 for letting us use their base camp and even their guns to shoot real steel!

At the speed and progress you guys are making now, I won’t be surprised you can host the biggest Airsoft event in 2016 on Asian or worldwide level. Take that to the Guinness World of Records!

Oh and now I got a new goal: to get badges from US or European airsoft teams next!

Next Stop: Bandung…

Taking On Mount Kinabalu

IMAG8951

I am going to remember this for a long time to come.

This has got to be the longest, toughest hike in my life so far! Not so much about physically but more of a test of mental endurance.

More than half a year ago, we planned our own hiking expedition to Mount Kinabalu, the tallest mountain in South-East Asia standing at 4095.2 meters or 13,435 feet.

My health was getting better and training became regular in the last two months in preparation for the hike. The expedition group consists of:

  1. Myself (Malaysia)
  2. Kenneth Chan (Malaysia)
  3. Peter Han (Malaysia)
  4. Verine (Malaysia)
  5. Sasa (Hong Kong)
  6. Tak (Hong Kong)
  7. Shawn (Malaysia – Sabah)

Haha, call this a joint expedition between Malaysia and Hong Kong to take the summit! 🙂

IMG_6833

The hike from Timpohon Gates to Laban Rata on Day 1. We started the hike at nearly 9 in the morning with Verine reaching Laban Rata first at 1:20’ish in the afternoon, followed by myself 10 minutes later.

IMG_6777 IMG_6780 IMG_6782 IMG_6787

Overall, it was alright. Not easy but not hard either.

It was the 3:00 AM hike to Low’s Peak that was hardest.

IMG_6799

We had an early dinner and slept in early (or at least tried to). We woke up around 1:00 – 1:30 AM to have an ‘early breakfast’ – which on any other midnight would have passed for supper.

laban-rata-gco-team

Then we geared up for the so-called 25% remaining route to Low’s Peak – which felt like 75% of the entire journey!

The first 700 meters was the same as the day before; stairs and forests. Except that since it was night, the plants were giving out carbon dioxide instead of oxygen. As if the thin air at high altitude wasn’t already bad enough!

And we were just getting started.

Awww shit.
Awww shit.

I had breathing difficulties and took more breaks than the day hike earlier. Is that how the word ‘breathtaking’ came about?

Looks like Peter's got breathing trouble too.
Looks like Peter’s got breathing trouble too.

Where the forest ended, the next difficult part of the climb presented itself in the form of granites. Climbing on unforgiving pavements that know no equal.

IMG_6845

The higher I climbed, I started to feel like I was going to puke, and even though I was wrapped up I had trouble coping with the cold. It was 3 degree Celcius and the regular hiker would have scoffed at it for being generously warm already.

Yet I am very vulnerable to cold.

I took a few video clips and merged them into one – this would describe my situation best.

When reaching the lower end of the mountain, I had already missed the sun rise by half an hour.

(In the video, I made a mistake mentioning that I caught the sunrise in time… I suppose that was how detached from reality I was then!)

At this point, I was debating between hanging around there and save my energy for going back to Laban Rata

OR

Continue ascending to the top though it meant risking being one of the last people to go back.

I went with the latter. And continued climbing to the peak.

IMG_6822 IMG_6826

… And sure enough, because I ascended to the peak LATE I was also the LAST person to go back to base.

Not last among my friends.

Last among the 100+ hikers that morning.

I was in a state of what I can describe best as ‘half dreaming’ as I took half-steps down the granite mountain. My mind was occupied with only going back home and wishful thinking such as instant teleportation, hoping for a helicopter, and even tempted to ask a porter to carry me back even at the expense of RM300 to RM400 a kilometer and my pride.

Yeah, you’ve guessed it. I had altitude sickness. Shit.

Even with all the training I went through, I returned to Laban Rata last. Earlier I told my friends to go ahead and not wait for me, fearing that I would just wind up being a burden to their speed.

I got back to the Laban Rata inn just in time to check out. I had difficulty eating the breakfast they saved for me because I had lost my appetite.

Yet we needed to leave right away and track back to Timpohon Gates.

IMG_6832

This time, Shawn stayed behind with me to make sure I was alright. Now I gotta tell you what a badass Shawn is. Shawn has been training for hiking and outdoor adventures, and this is already the sixth time he’s here at Mount KK. In fact, he’s going to join an expedition to the base camp at Mount Everest soon.

While the rest of the group went ahead of me, I was still stuck at half-step gear. I would take a break after every few dozens of steps.

However as I descended lower the mountain, my appetite came back and breathing became normal again (yay!) I followed Shawn’s lead on how to hike down the mountain properly – which must have saved my knee caps and my calf muscles less sore even as I am writing this.

It got to the point that I went from being the last person to overtaking half of the group and even the other hikers that left in the dust earlier so to speak, haha! Not that there was any race going on. But I was amazed at the sudden recovery within several hours.

It was definitely altitude sickness up there!

However our Hong Kong friends were not to be messed around with. Sasa has been hiking regularly for 15 years and counting – and her training includes climbing 70 flights of stairs. Tak was no less a hiker too.

IMG_6880

All in all, the pain and suffering was worth it! I am glad that in many ways, I passed my own physical and mental endurance test – the fact that I didn’t give up going to the peak in spite of my condition.

If I had just turned back when I was so near yet so far, I would feel my regrets now. I kept telling myself that if I could survive this, I could survive anything.

10307429

And it wouldn’t have been possible if not for my friends who supported me especially on my way down when I looked pale and green. Haha!