The summer season is almost over but I have not visited any beaches so far. Well, because of climate change, it’s really hard to tell when will summer end. I only had one summer outing recently when Mary Ann (my office mate) invited me to join her team building in Bato Springs, San Pablo, Laguna (going south from Manila). Aside from the unlimited use of videoke and the never-ending generous servings of food, the place was really nice. It is indeed a breathe of fresh air away from the city. The place is located at the foot of the mountain (Mt. Banahaw) and there is an outdoor pool with man-made falls that provided an added attraction. The water was very cold but once you dip in the pool area, you will feel all the stress from work being stripped off by fresh water. Check out this site for more details – http://www.eatandrun.com.ph/travel/resorts/bato-springs-resort.

To cool off the summer heat, a good friend of mine (Aileen) told me that running as a hobby alone is not the best way to fitness and I have to do some sort of cross training. This month, I have already tried swimming lapses in 3 different venues in the Metro and I guess I found a new hobby to complement my races. They say this is the best whole body exercise and it’s not prone to knee/leg injuries like running and cycling. So here are the places I have visited.

May 1, 2010 (Ace Water Spa in Quezon City) – entrance fee is Php500++. It’s a high-end venue because aside from the 25-meter pool, it is a great place for relaxation that will provide all kinds of water massages/therapies, hot and cold jacuzzi, sauna, steam bath, etc. For details, visit www.acewaterspa.com.ph

May 8, 2010 (Makati Aquatic Sports Arena a.k.a. MASA) – entrance fee is Php150 but only Php50 for Makati residents. I love the place because it is new and well-maintained and it has an Olympic Size pool (50 meters) with at least 8 lanes. If I will recommend a good place for training in swimming then this is it.

May 12, 2010 (Pasay City Sports Complex) – entrance free is only Php50 and Php40 for Pasay residents. This is a good venue for budget-conscious beginners. The pool size is the same as Ace water spa. If you are picky, I don’t recommend this place because the place can be crowded and the facilities are not well-maintained.

If I started to pick up my swimming pace with good speed and proper breathing, who knows I might be joining an aquathlon event (run + swim) someday. And who says I will not experience a great beach/island venue this summer. I am off to Batanes island by the end of month!