(This is my go at “live” blogging — I’ll recount events this morning at the WPCF Walk as they take place; and record them on my phone for later posting.)

The 6.00am alarm has just gone off and my short sleep has been interrupted.

Yawn!

I woke feeling a little tired but with some anticipation. Yes, this is the day for the WPCF Community Walk 2017.

A gust of wind rushed in as I opened the windows to greet this Sunday morning. I have not been up this early for a long time now, so it’s both refreshing and a slight challenge at staying awake.

The Night Before…

Originally, I had planned to sleep at 10pm the night before so that I’d get a full 8-hour rest. But I had hit the gym at 9pm for a session of strength training, so was still up at 10 plus after a shower.

And then an idea came to me to fill that rather large white space on the Walk bib as I pinned it to the tee shirt. That meant the brain went into overtime and kept me busy till 1am!

Yawn! (again)

Heading Out

Ok, I’ve eaten two slices of pound cake and had a glass of water. Time to head out… it’s now 6.30.

I’m going to see if I can catch an early bus to go towards Yio Chu Kang Rd, where I can transfer to another that goes to Hougang Ave 8.

Note: Availability of buses at this time of day is somewhat limited! Luckily the lack of traffic meant a normally long-winded ride — one of those bus services running — is now smother and quicker.

Early Sunday morning at Lor Chuan bus stop

Arriving at Punggol Park

Managed to hop on bus service 73 and transferred to service 136 at Boundary Rd. The second ride will take me close to Punggol Park.

7.06: Alighted at bus stop near that Upper Serangoon landmark: Church of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary. A short walk to the park along Hougang Ave 8 from here.

Church of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary at Upper Serangoon
Church of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary signboard

7.14: What a beautiful morning at the park. A crowd has already gathered around the Pavilion meet-up venue. The MC is warming up the people.

Entering Punggol Park
Crowd has gathered for WPCF Walk 2017

The day’s programme, sent out by the WPCF team on Saturday, looks like this…

WPCF Walk programme highlights from Email

Getting Ready for Flag Off

Participants are moving to the area behind the gathering point, nearer the pond, for a quick warm-up before the walk begins.

7.20: Warming up time, guided by fitness instructor. The signboard near the pond serves as a good reminder. (I was busy with warm-up, so forgot to snap pics!)

View of Punggol Park pond, where we warmed up before Walk flag-off
WPCF Walk participants raring to go

7.30: WPCF management and committee — Mr Low Thia Khiang, Mr Faisal Manap, Mr Png Eng Huat and Ms Tan Hui Tsing — and main sponsor gather on stage to prepare for flag off.

WPCF Walk committee gathers on stage
WPCF committee ready to flag off

Other WP members can be spotted amongst the crowd, all geared up for exercise.

7.35: The countdown begins: “3, 2, 1.” There goes the horn. And Mr Low has waved the flag for the official flag-off! Here we go… for a 3.8km walk. Just look at that crowd…

The MC wished us a good walk and reminded participants of the activities coming up after the walk.

The WPCF Walk Begins… Here We Go…

It’s a slow start as everyone gathers pace and moves along. The hustle and bustle at Punggol Park is readily felt, even at such an early hour. It’s not just us WPCF Walk participants here!

7.39: Lots of activities at the park, like this group exercising to music; and folks doing Qi Gong. Many joggers too.

People exercising to music at Punggol Park
Group of Qi Gong practitioners at Punggol Park

7.48: Met and shook hands with Mr Png.

7.52: We’re out of the park, heading towards Tampines Rd / Punggol Promenade.

7.55: Reached the 1km check point.

Out of Punggol Park towards Punggol Promenade
WPCF Walk 1km check point

7.57: There are participants walking back! So fast, these must be serious walkers!

8.01: Water point reached. Got a bottle of unchilled water and sipped some 🙂 Good to stay hydrated even though the sun is not quite up yet.

WPCF Walk water point

Halfway Point

8.03: Reached 1.5km check point. Also the turning around spot for the return leg to the Park.

8.08: Met Mr Chen Show Mao and chatted a bit.

8.14: Under that low bridge that goes across Buangkok Dr. A nice breeze is keeping us cool.

8.18: Met and shook hands with Mr Low. He’s been busy mingling with Walk participants since we began the journey en masse.

8.19: 2.5km check point in sight.

8.22: Back in the park, beside the pond and exercise area. Can hear the MC from afar briefing people who have finished walking.

8.28: 300 metres to go and I’m done walking.

WPCF Walk last 300m check point

8.31: End of my leisurely 1-hour walk; more like a stroll (in the park!) actually 🙂

Goodie Bag and Fun Activities

All Walk participants who wore their bibs got to collect a goodie bag each at the end of the walk.

My sack feels heavy!

Aside: I’m back home and looking at what’s inside the goodie bag.

Hmm… lots of instant food — not to my liking, really, as these are generally not healthy.

WPCF Walk goodie bag
WPCF Walk goodie bag contents

I’m throwing away some items which I deem bad:

  • Quaker chewy granola bar — it proudly says “Produced by Genetic Engineering” on the label! Oh no, I had eaten one bar after my walk and it was way, way too sweet. And to think it contains GMO ingredients — I should have read the label first. Yuck!!
  • Quaker instant oatmeal — best before date is just a month away! And this has artificial flavours!!
  • Energ-G drink — loads of sugar inside! Plus a blue coloured drink just doesn’t do it for me 🙁
  • Nutribrown rice — best before date only two months from now! Why are these near-expiry products even in the goodie bag?

I’ve had enough of these poor quality stuff. Dropped a quick note to the WPCF organizing team to alert them of such lousy items in the bag. Hopeful that they’ll be more stringent with sponsor selection in the future.

Ok, back to the WPCF Walk 2017 commentary…

There’s free massage for those who would like to relieve stress.

And a play area for kids to bounce around.

WPCF Walk massage booth
WPCF Walk kids play area

Ok, the aerobics exercise is about to begin. Think I’ll give this a miss.

Now the aerobics team is asking people to do burpees. Have you even heard of this workout? It can be very taxing for those who aren’t that flexible in movement.

WPCF Walk aerobics session

Quiz Time & More…

It’s 9am and the aerobics session has just ended. Next, a sponsor is giving away pineapple tarts to participants who joined the workout.

And a quiz round has started.

Hey, I just found a welcome note in the goodie bag. This Walk is actually the first ever by WPCF. Wow, I didn’t know that!

WPCF Walk message from chairman

Zumba session time. It’s just past 9.30. I’ll watch to see what it’s all about…

The Bee Gees “Staying Alive” is now playing!

WPCF Walk Zumba session with Mr Png joining in

All in, dancers, both on and off stage, had a fun workout for a full 20 minutes. Amazing energy!

The sun is finally making its presence felt. We are blessed with such good weather this morning, given that it rained the past few days; sometimes rather heavy too.

Event Bib Design — And the Winners Are…

Next up, the results for the walk event bib design contest.

So, did the roving team spot my bib?

I understand someone from the team would inform walk participants who had designs that made the cut.

Up till now, I heard nothing. So nope, my bib design wasn’t shortlisted.

Anyway, my design probably looked geeky — I can’t draw for nuts, but word play is my thing 🙂

Four winners — all had drawn graphic designs — collected their prizes given out by Mr. Low.

Mark's bib design for WPCF Walk 2017

Cake Cutting to Mark the Successful WPCF Walk 2017 Event

Finally, cake cutting to mark the end of the WPCF Walk 2017. This has been a successful inaugural event, no doubt.

And July babies are invited to join in the celebration as well. Happy birthday to all of you 🙂

WPCF Walk 2017 cake being lifted for photos
WPCF Walk 2017 cake - geting ready to cut it with some July babies
WPCF Walk 2017 cake... and it's cut