Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Conquering Victoria Harbor

Just got back from a great 4-day vacation in Hong Kong with wifey and my mom.  It would have been a typical Pinoy HK trip (i.e., shopping, food tripping) had it not been for the very scenic 10k "chill run" that I did last Saturday. Instead of doing the "Tsim Sha Tsui Oceanview Course," which features the West KowloonWaterfront Promenade, I ran a course that featured the Avenue of the Stars, the Salisbury Garden, and the Tsim Sha Tsui East Promenade.  Apparently, this route is quite popular among runners in HK.  A good number of runners of different nationalities were also doing their morning run. I even ran into our very own Eduardo "Vertek" Buenavista, who was doing a light jog presumably in preparation for the 2010 Standard Chartered Hong Kong Marathon. It was a relatively short course so I ended up doing a couple of loops to complete my target 10k distance.  My route viewed from Garmin Connect:

Click image for a larger view.

It was my first time to run in Hong Kong, and it was an awesome experience.  The temperature was a very comfortable 22°C and the skies were overcast.  I started my run at 7:48 a.m., and it took me 1:14:41 to cover 10k.  The run was peppered with numerous "photo breaks" -- I either stopped to take pictures or to ask other tourists to take my picture. According to my 305, I had an average pace 7:27mpk, gained an elevation of 370m, and consumed  a total of 913 calories.

A late Saturday night-out kept me from waking up in time to catch the gun start of the SCHKM.  I also planned on running in Victoria Park last Monday, but some last-minute shopping (we flew back to Manila Monday evening) also kept me from doing that run.  And so, all I have are these -- some swell photos of what I would consider an early contender for my personal "Run of the Year."

I started my run at the back of the HK Museum of Art.
 Apparently, the Avenue of the Stars is a popular HK running route.

One of the markers along the Avenue of the Stars -- and my foot

More runners

Tsim Sha Tsui East Promenade

 Runners along the promenade

 Photo taken by a security officer manning one of the coffee shops along the promenade
 This was supposed to be a random shot, but it turned out that the approaching
runner in white was actually Vertek Buenavista, doing a light jog.

 Thick fog enveloped the harbor all morning

 A money shot of the nearby Hung Hom Pier

A nice view of the Hong Kong side of Victoria Harbor

At one of the viewing decks along the promenade, taken by an
old Chinese man who had just finished his taichi exercise

Tsim Sha Tsui Clock Tower

 Another shot of the Hong Kong side of Victoria Harbor 

Salisbury Road

 Going up the on-ramp to the elevated walkway parallel to the
Hung Hom By-Pass, photo taken by a Japanese tourist

 On-ramp to Hung Hom By-Pass

 A birds' eye view of the West Kowloon Promenade,
taken atop the elevated walkway

 The fog cleared and revealed a great view of the other side of the harbor 

Another nice shot of the other side of the harbor

By 9 a.m., the Avenue of the Stars had once again turned into the
popular tourist attraction that it really is.  Time to end my run!

End of an awesome run. Modeling the RunRio Trilogy Leg 1 Finisher's Shirt in Kowloon.
Photo taken by a female tourist with an Australian accent.

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