Mt Maculot


 It was the day after Typhoon Nina had just devastated some parts of the country. We were supposed to climb a different, more difficult mountain that day, but, given that typhoon had just hit the area, we decided to change our whole itinerary.


From a large group of 20+ that was supposed to hike a different mountain at dawn to catch the sunrise, we ended up with a little less than 20 people climbing up to catch the sunset instead. And I’m glad we did.


We saw a tree that had fallen the day before right at the start of the hike. We were scared that the soil might be soft due to the storm but fortunately, the soil was dry, thanks to the humidity and heat that day. Ofcourse, it was the heat and humidity that made the climb harder than it really was as well.


Having some first time hikers with us, we paced slow and steady, and took tons of photos every chance we had. And boy, did we take lots of those chances! 


I kept muttering “oh my God it’s so beautiful” over and over as we were nearing the Rockies. Because it really was. Everywhere we looked, everything our eyes could see… the photos don’t give any justice to the breathtaking beauty that we witnessed.


Standing at the top and edge of every rock just for that obligatory mountain photo was quite a challenge. You look down and see that one wrong move would mean the end. It is of utmost importance to practice extra caution when going up those rocks. Didn’t help that I’m actually frightened of heights so I had to do my deep breathing exercises whenever I’d be standing by a cliff. 


We were all on top of the Rockies when sunset occurred  and we just stayed there. Sat down and took it all in. (And took tons of photos again ofcourse.) there are no words that can suffice to describe it. Mother Nature put on a show that day and to just marvel at what you see was inevitable.


We climbed down as it was getting dark and again, the view of the city slowly lighting up in the dark was another sight to behold. Took more photos not with a camera but just my eyes for the memory bank this time… extremely grateful for that sudden change of plans. Grateful to have hiked safely. Grateful to have witnessed the sunset at the most amazing spot thus far. Grateful to have had another opportunity to climb. To end the year with an exhilarating climb up a mountain is more than what I wished for when this marvelous year started. I love it. 

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Twin peaks – Mt Cayabu & Mt Maynuba

It was a week before Christmas, the only day we were all available for a Sunday hike. pinoyMountaineer photos showed a beautiful sea of clouds once you reach the summit, but, it had been raining intermittently on the day of our climb, so the sea of clouds were a no show, but it was beautiful nonetheless. A Beautiful rainbow also appeared at some point, when the rain had paused.


We started our hike at 4am, when the sun wasn’t even up yet and headlamps were our bff’s.


We reached the first summit, Mt Cayabu, while it was dark still. It’s ok, it was Maynuba that we were after anyway.


Everything was so beautiful. Perhaps the only caveat was that the ground was extremely muddy and slippery. But the weather, albeit the rain, was cool, we liked it. 


We decided to traverse the mountain, never mindthe extra hours it would add to our hike because traversing meant going through 8 “wonder falls” where you could take a dip. The cold, clean water was such a treat for our tired legs! 


Watching the sun rise as we hiked through the mountains… just being around nature. The phone connection may have been non existent there, but the human connection was stronger than ever. 


What made this hike special also was that not only is it our first hike back after a year and a half, but it’s the first time I have ever hiked with my bro. And it won’t be the last. ๐Ÿ™‚

12 years of missed steaks

And so the (somewhat) inevitable has happened.

12.5 years ago, i became an ovo-lacto vegetarian all because i watched a documentary by PETA that made me cry my eyes out because i felt sorry for the cows and pigs.

a year later, i started eating fish because i was advised to do so.

fast forward to September of this year, as i had just finished my first ever Olympic distane triathlon race and was gearing up for my second one, a triathlete/nutritionist-in-training friend of mine told me that maybe i should start eating meat to get stronger. i told him i’d think about it but would only really consider it perhapsย after my race. i didnt want the meat to mess up my system, if ever.

And so for 2 months, i was mentally and emotionally preparing myself with the fact that i might have to try eating meat again. the thought made me shiver. it made me scared. how will my body take it? how will it react? will i get sick? will i like it? i was secretly hoping i’d hate it.

What most people didnt know though, was that dizzy spells was becoming a norm for me already. practicing yoga would sometimes make me feel dizzy with all the inversions; i open my eyes and i see stars. i didnt want to admit that i was feeling weak. i didnt dare show it.

i guess my doctor’s spidey sense went tingling when he messaged me to drop by his clinic as he was concerned about something. and so, to cut this very long story short, i was told that i was getting anemic, and that my body NEEDED the meat to fully recover from my intense trainings. plant and fish protein werent enough for my body’s needs anymore. it was a choice of either eating meat or having to heavily supplement artificially. that was the clincher.

my friends who raced with me in Bohol kept me company as i had my first bout of meat. Sara set up 2 cameras and edited this video too. so for those who were wondering how i reacted the first time i tried it… here you go.

the first bite was the weirdest sensation and taste ive had in years. the juice, the texture…. it was something i wasnt used to. it was weird. good. but weird. im so sad that i love it. now ive been eating steak almost everyday….

yes, i was trying to delay having to eat it. yes, i felt bad. and yes, i cried myself to sleep that night. it wasnt an emotional cry, but i think i really just felt bad for the cow. sorry mister cow, ive begun to love you in a different way now….