Sunday, May 15, 2011

Cyclists Rally for Cervical Cancer Prevention on May 28

How far would you go to save 500 women?

For the dedicated cyclists of the upcoming “Tour of Hope 2011- 00: Going the Xtra Mile Against Cervical Cancer,” it will take 500 kilometers in 5 days. They will undertake the challenging 5-day journey from Manila to Laoag in order to help raise funds for cervical cancer prevention vaccination drives and seminars.

“What makes this year’s Tour of Hope different is that we are going to vaccinate a total of 500 women during the tour,” explains Abbygale Arenas-de Leon, Bravehearts president. “We wanted the tour to be more than just a way to spread awareness about cervical cancer prevention. We hope this will inspire more women to take action against this deadly but preventable disease.”

Recently, the exciting details of the biggest anti-cervical cancer were revealed at the official launch of this year’s Tour of Hope, which was organized by Bravehearts in partnership with Team David’s Salon and GlaxoSmithKline. The event was held at R.O.X., the biggest outdoor sports and recreation hub in Southeast Asia and hosted by celebrity athlete Tricia Chiongbian-Concepcion, who will also be cycling to help save women from cervical cancer in the Tour of Hope.

In a country where cervical cancer claims the lives of 12 women everyday[1], the need to fight this disease has only become more urgent over the years.

“I would like to encourage women to be screened for cervical cancer regularly,” said Dr. Cecilia Llave, Program Director of the Cervical Cancer Prevention Network (CECAP). “The disease is treatable through early detection. In fact, not only is it treatable, it can also be avoided by living a healthy lifestyle and getting vaccinated.”
Since The Tour of Hope started in 2008, it has generated approximately Php 2 million through sponsorships and pledges. These were then used for cervical cancer screening programs and lectures with the Cervical Cancer Prevention Network (CECAP).

However, if you think that The Tour of Hope is all about the bikers, think again. Over the past two years, the event organizers have formed partnerships with local government units such as those of Tarlac, Dagupan, Pampanga, La Union, and Baguio in order to conduct lectures during each stopover of the tour to local communities with marginalized groups who display poor health-seeking behavior.

What’s in Store for The Tour of Hope 2011
Aside from the challenging journey, The Tour of Hope has always been known for bringing its participants to scenic locations such as Vigan, Zambales, and Camarines Sur. This year is no exception. The Tour of Hope 2011 - 500: Going the Xtra Mile Against Cervical Cancer will kick off at the TriNoma Mall in Quezon City on May 28, 2011.

The first stop will be at Tarlac City, Tarlac. It is the home of President Noynoy Aquino’s ancestral house and Mount Pinatubo, where adventure-seeking 4x4 wheel drivers try their skills, and hikers visit the crater. The tour will then continue to San Fernando, La Union, where the renowned La Union Botanical Gardens is located. Afterwards, the bikers will head to Vigan City, Ilocos Sur, where historical churches and ancestral homes that reflect the beauty of old world architecture can be found. The fourth stop will be Laoag City, Ilocos Norte, where tourists often visit the Juan Luna Shrine. There, visitors can get a glimpse of the award-winning Spolarium painter’s life through vintage photographs and household artifacts. The final stop for this year’s Tour of Hope is Paoay, where bikers will get to see the unique blend of Spanish, Chinese, and architecture represented by Paoay Church, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

The last leg of the tour will feature celebrity bikers such as Commissioner Gregorio Larrazabal, Marvin Kiefer, Rovilson Fernandez, Troy Montero, Aubrey Miles, Will Devaughn, Richie Hardin, Richard Herrera, Janna Victoria, Gem Padilla, Anthony Pangilinan, and David Charlton. They will be lending their star power to draw attention to a good cause. In addition, Tessa Prieto-Valdes is currently working on a special project that will also help raise funds for cervical cancer prevention.

As part of the preparations for the upcoming Tour of Hope, there will also be a Mini Tour of Hope that will be held on May 7 at Filinvest, Alabang. This is a great way for biking enthusiasts to show their support for the anti-cervical cancer advocacy, and everyone is invited to join.

“On behalf of Bravehearts, I’d like to encourage everyone to join the fight against cervical cancer,” Abbygale Arenas-de Leon said. “For all the women, do it for your families and loved ones. And for all the men, I encourage you to support the cervical cancer prevention advocacy for your mothers, sisters, and daughters. With your help, thousands of lives can be saved.”

Bravehearts is a non-profit organization initially led by the Cervical Cancer Prevention Network (CECAP) for the Cancer Institute Foundation (CIF). It is dedicated to raising awareness on cervical cancer prevention and is supported by a growing number of women, including prominent personalities such as Abbygale Arenas-de Leon, who is the current president of the organization, Senator Loren Legarda, Pia Magalona, Ellen Tordesillas, Tessa Prieto-Valdes, Jeena Lopez, Maimai Davao, Joyette Jopson, and Suzi Entrata. For further inquiries, please email To be a part of The Tour of Hope 2011 – 500: Going the Xtra Mile Against Cervical Cancer, please email Joyette Jopson at or contact her at 0917-8827352.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

NBA Playoffs 2K11 Smackdown Update!

About 2 weeks ago, when the NBA Playoffs started, me and Joyful Chicken went head to head ala True Hoop's Stat Geek Smackdown. Rules are simple, 5 points for predicting the series outcome, and extra 2 points for predicting the number of games.

joyful chicken


After the first round, here's a look at the scoreboard:

 NBA GeekChi vs IndMia vs PhiBos vs NYOrl vs AtlSA vs MemLA vs NODal vs PorOKC vs DenTotal

As expected, one is up by 5 because we disagreed on the outcome of the Dallas vs Portland series, other than that, we, like most "experts", didn't foresee both the Magic and the Spurs elimination, though we bought agreed that it was going to be a difficult series for both teams. Right now looking at the True Hoop Smackdown Scoreboard, JC is tied with sports economist Dave Berri for 3rd place, and I'm tied at the 2nd to the last place with overrated ESPN Analyst John Hollinger, Basketball Reference's Neil Paine and Las Vegas gambler extraordinaire (or so Henry Abbot leads me to believe) Haralabos Voulgaris. So clearly, a bad sign for me.

So now I owe Josh a small prize (to be decided) for losing round 1. We've decided a week or so ago, that each round's winner gets a small prize, and the grand winner gets a big prize, none of which we've settled on as yet. I have very little hope for the 2nd round however. Here's a look at our 2nd round predictions:


NBA Geek Chi vs Atl Mia vs Bos Mem vs OKC LA vs Dal
Chi in 6 Bos in 7 OKC in 5 LA in 6
joyfulchicken Chi in 5 Bos in 7 OKC in 7 LA in 6

We're all in agreement on who will win the series. The only series to take a special look at is the Chicago vs Atlanta one and the OKC vs Memphis one. This will be the difference maker of around 2 to 4 pts assuming one of us get the exact no. of games right. So clearly, I have no chance to get ahead in this series from this round. I can only hope to win myself a small prize, and maybe cut the 5 point lead to 1. We'll see.

Join us via the comment section if you want.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

NBA Playoffs 2K11 Smackdown!

Playoffs starts today (yesterday in the US), and fantasy season is over. Joyful Chicken finally wins his first championship in our league but that's another story. Since we're such NBA Geeks, we thought (well I thought and he agreed) that it might be a good idea to make predictions and wager on it. So we did. We're doing it ala True Hoop's Stat Geek Smackdown. Rules are simple, 5 points for predicting the series outcome, and extra 2 points for predicting the number of games.
joyful chicken


Here are our projections:

1. East 
NBA Geek Chi vs Ind Mia vs Phi Bos vs NY Orl vs Atl
Chi in 5 Mia in 4 Bos in 6 Orl in 7
joyfulchicken CHI in 5 MIA in 6 BOS in 6 ORL in 7

2. West

NBA Geek SA vs Mem LA vs NO Dal vs Por OKC vs Den
SA in 6 LA in 5 Por in 7 OKC in 7
joyfulchicken SA in 6 LA in 4 DAL in 7 OKC in 6

Series to take a special look at is the Dal vs Por one. This will be the difference maker of 5-7pts in round 1. 3 other series that might potentially give one a 2 point advantage apiece are the Mia vs Phi series, the LA vs NO series, and the OKC vs Den series.

Join us via the comment section if you want.


1. Quarter Finals

NBA Geek Chi vs Ind Mia vs Phi Bos vs NY Orl vs Atl
--  --  --  -- 
joyfulchicken --  --  --  -- 

NBA Geek SA vs Mem LA vs NO Dal vs Por OKC vs Den Total
--  --  --  --  --
joyfulchicken --  --  --  --  --


Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Do You Want To Know Your Chronotype?

I'm a moderate late type. No, that doesn't mean I'm moderately late all the time. That's my chronotype. What is a chronotype you ask? Well, ever heard of the term circadian rhythm? How about entrainment and zeitgebers? Sounds complicated? In a sense, they are. Which is why it is important to study it. Especially since it influences our everyday lives. Let me explain.

Circadian rhythm is what we normally call our body clock. It is essentially a set of rules our body follows in a given 24-hour cycle. It determines when we wake up, when we sleep, and when we are most alert. It explains why some prefer to work at night and some during the wee hours of the morning. Now our biological clock is mostly self-sustained, however this can be adapted or entrained. Entrainment is when we adjust the clock based on external cues. These external cues are also called zeitgebers (German for "time-givers"), the most potent of which is bright light. Normally, your internal day-night cycle should coincide with your external day-night cycle, but sometimes this is disrupted by a different social schedule, like for nurses or call-center agents for example. The relationship between our external and internal cycle is called the phase of entrainment. The individual variation in our phase of entrainment is called the chronotype.

To date, many studies have been done on the different chronotypes of various populations, but no such data exist for Filipinos. This is an important step if we are ever to understand how it works and how the different sleep principles apply to us. This is the work being undertaken by PhilSHIFT. PhilSHIFT is an interdisciplinary group that brings together researchers from UP Manila--Prof. Maria Eliza Aguila of the UP College of Allied Medical Professions, Prof. Gayline F. Manalang Jr. of the UP College of Public Health, and Dr. D. Darwin Dasig of the College of Medicine, along with a number of researchers from the Ludwig Maximilian University - Munich Institute of Medical Psychology, led by Prof. Till Roenneberg, MD, and Eduardo Mendoza, Ph.D. This institution has made groundbreaking contributions in this field.

What is this to us? Well, we can help by answering the PhilMCTQ. This is an online questionnaire that helps us understand the individual differences in the circadian clock and its underlying complexity through a few simple questions on sleep during work days and free days. The questions are simple, it won't take you more than 5 minutes to fill out. Best of all, you will receive feedback through email on your results after answering the questionnaire. I trust that you will find this information interesting.
So, what is your Chronotype? Visit and find out today. (And please, feel free to invite your friends and family to answer the questionnaire as well. Also, you might want to read this article to learn more about this initiative.)

PS This was initially published at which has been shut down indefinitely. Permit me to leave you with some updates from the authors:
After a year online  at TheWep, PhilMCTQ (our questionnaire) has already gathered about a thousand Filipino respondents, and we mean to do preliminary analysis of the results soon.  PhilSHIFT, however, hope to get 3,000 more Filipinos to answer the survey, our target being at least 4,000 respondents.  On March 11th, 2010 (Friday), the PhilSHIFT Research Group shall have a workshop, during which we hope to give an update on the project and discuss shift work research in the Philippines.  Aside from members of PhilSHIFT, representatives of the call center industry will also be invited to talk about current state of affairs and possible research areas.  

This workshop is open to all interested, and will be held at the College of Public Health, University of the Philippines Manila.  Those interested to attend may get in touch with Professor Gayline F. Manalang Jr. through gfmanalangjr[at]