Fitness, Run, Running

And so it begins…my road to Comrades 2018

Comrades 2018

Darren aka my hubby has decided that he wants to run Comrades next year, taking place 10th June 2018. Starting out in Pietermaritzburg, South Africa. #Comrades2018 will be a down run and the 93rd. It’s a goal he has set himself after years of not running anything further than a 21.1km and his focus has been mainly in cycling until now.

He is going to be sharing his road to the start line through a series of weekly posts.

Many times I’ve been alone, and many times I’ve cried
Anyway you’ll never know, the many ways I’ve tried
And still, they lead me back, to the long winding road
You left me standing here a long long time ago
Don’t leave me waiting here, lead me to your door

The long and winding road – The Beatles – 1970 Continue reading “And so it begins…my road to Comrades 2018”

Cycling, Dare2Tri, Experiences, Family, Fitness, Milestone, Running, Swim, Tri, Weekend

Our cold active weekend …

Son and Hubby making their way to the start
Son and Hubby making their way to the start

Early Saturday morning we packed our family car and made our way to Northern Farm. For the second year now, we opted to support the Winter Ride n Run hosted by the Redhill School and FedGroup. It was freaking cold, but our young man was super excited that we were for a change packing his bike into the car and making our way to the main road to ride it. I’ve not seen him this happy in ages. Smiling from ear to ear and kept confirming if indeed he was going to ride his bike. I was also very promptly told that I would have to wait for them while they went off on their bikes.

What are we waiting for...
What are we waiting for…

Hubby left first, I had to hold our young man back as he felt he needed to be riding off with dadD. It took some convincing that he too would be riding off soon.

When we eventually got tot he starting pen, he was like .. “What are we waiting for now..?”  We eventually left and the race was on! He road off and was loving every minute of the experience. 

I thought bottlenecks only happened in the big peoples races, apparently not! It wasn’t too long after we left that we hit our first bottleneck!

Bottleneck ... seriously
Bottleneck … seriously

If he had his way, he would have been pushing forward and bumping his front tyre onto the bike in from to get them to move out the way .. so typical of many adult MTB races! If I could read minds, I am sure his would have been screaming ..“Move it!” 

Roughing it
Roughing it

I really loved how they made the route “technical”, keeping it real in terms of what MTB is all about! The young man was loving all the ups and downs, even overtaking the slow bikes on his own. It really was too special to watch and just share this moment with him.

This was the first time we’d been back to Northern Farm since he joined the family. We loved that he was clearly having a fun time. I don’t think it will be too long before we make it a habit. I have no doubt, this young man is going to be MTB cyclist .. he loves calculated danger, this was very clear on Saturday!

Fellow Runners
Fellow Runners

So great to see both Lucy and Stevie supporting the Redhill School event as well. They both ran the 6km Trail run, while Lucy’s hubby rode the 45km MTB race.

Festive Time
Festive Time

The event itself was very well organised, number collection was quick and much better compared to last year. The public support was amazing. If the event was better communicated this year, then it is a recipe the school and FedGroup should continue to use, it definately works!

There was plenty of entertainment for the little ones, space for the riders to park their bikes post the race, loads of food  and fresh coffee to warm us up being sold to the public as well.

Next year .. try and give it a go .. 🙂

 

 

 

Later on Saturday afternoon it was time to support two charities via the Otter’s Annual 6.7km Fun Run Challenge .. we clearly enjoying these annual events .. well some of them anyway with great causes. The Otter’s run supports The Baby House in Lonehill and Lesedi Children’s Home. I would have loved to include a link to the Lesedi Children’s Home, but either I’ve lost my touch with searching for stuff online or they don’t have a page at the moment.

I’ve included the link to The Baby House above, so you can read up on them as well. Briefly here is an extract from their website

The Baby House Lonehill

The Baby House was founded in response to the need for 5 million children who will be orphaned by 2015 in South Africa. The Baby House is officially a place of safety for abused and abandoned babies and toddlers… our style of care however is far beyond what you would expect in a typical children’s home. We value one on one attention, loving touch and good quality nutrition, medication and therapies to assist our little ones in healing from trauma and returning to a safe world of self-discovery. We opened our doors in 2011, to date the destiny of 21 children has been radically and beautifully changed. We are based in Johannesburg and house 6 children at a time. Our vision is to create more homes, with medical facilities to accommodate victims of infant rape as well as abused and abandoned babies. In order to do this we need to increase our sustainable income and to form partnerships with corporations devoted to the care and development of our current and future generation of children.”

They will be hosting a few events from September this year to raise funds for their charity, one of which includes riding for them in the forthcoming 94.7 Cycle Challenge taking place on the 16th November. I need to chat to hubby about raising funds for our kit and entry, so that we can proudly cycle through the streets of Jozi in the colours of The Baby House and at the same time not only raise awareness of this wonderful cause, but also help raise much needed funds so that they may continue to do their wonderful work. 

Otter's Fun Run Challenge
Otter’s Fun Run Challenge

Now back to the run… having run the route last year I was in familiar surroundings and what to expect. I am happy that I managed to run more of the route than I did last year, and the “killer hill” wasn’t so deadly this year. I didn’t run all of it perhaps next year, but I did run more of it than last year…hope that counts for something?

It was well organised and reasonably well attended. As it was held on Mandela Day, I’m not sure if all the other number of events taking place across the city this year overshadowed it, as it seemed a lot more low keyed in comparison to last year.

Still, it was beautiful to see the streets crowed by both local residents and visitors alike. Everyone running the streets of the Lonehill suburb as families, including their pets. After the run there were a few stalls selling food and drinks, while the children could run around the park enjoying the late afternoon sun around the park lawns.

Again, if you’re not doing anything else next year .. why not join us and the many families supporting this great initiative?

I dropped off my boys at home and after I was sure they were both washed and fed, I was back in my car and headed back to the local gym. Saturdays as part of my #DareToTri training is made up of a morning run and a swim session in the afternoon. I did the run, now I ached to complete the swim too. The gym closes at 8pm on Saturdays, so I managed to get there with just over an hour to spare. I’ve never been to the gym and found it so empty and quiet, a pleasant change. Changing from running gear to swim was the fastest I’ve done in a while, and before long I was in the pool. It wasn’t quite a brick swim, but I was motoring through the warmish waters. A goal of 2.5km was set and I was determined to accomplish it. Just under 50 minutes later I was done! Goal under the belt, I hit the showers and was out of the gym with 10 minutes to spare before they closed for the day.

Sunday morning came way too soon for my liking. Again, I had a goal to achieve. My legs have complained that I am not giving them enough road cycling time, so that was what would be happening Sunday morning. At 6am when the alarm went off, it was still way too cold for my liking. We waited for just after 8am when we felt the outdoors was slightly much warmer and made our way to the Cradle for my “lonely” ride. Lonely, only because I wasn’t riding with anyone else I knew but there were plenty of other riders on the road. I was supported by my hubby and son throughout the ride and that made it fun. At 9h30 I was cleated and hit the road. In no time I was out of the main Lanseria road and in the slightly more quieter road of the Cradle. Having successfully ridden on my own through the worst part of the Lanseria road for me … the section of the road is narrow and there is NO bike lane! Get the picture?!

Halfway Point - The Caves
Halfway Point – The Caves

I was on a roll. My initial goal was to cycle at least 60km, but would be happy with 50km at least, but nothing less than 50! First 30km was fun and I had a great pace. Met up with son and hubby at the caves for a bit of a breather and I was back on the saddle.

For a change I was also riding past some other cyclists 🙂 and not me being left behind as per norm. At the 40km point I began to feel my quadricep femoris muscles hinting that they were tired, they let me ride past it and when I got to the top of the road I was climbing .. I stopped! Cleated off and put my foot on the ground … OUCH! I was on a major road with quite a bit of traffic and hubby with the car was a whole 5km away from me. I could have called him and asked to be collected, but I was too proud .. yes typical male. After a brief rest and water .. leg seemed ready, I cleated back onto the bike and rode past the car all the way to the 50km point! That’s when I decided it was enough….

Hubby secured the bike back onto the bike rack. I changed my cycling shoes for running and hit the road. This time for my brick run. Yeah, my friends think I’m nuts too! What’s a brick run you may be asking …well it …

…refers to training on two disciplines during the same workout.

Bricks are a very important part of triathlon (and duathlon) training, one after the other with minimal or no interruption in between, just as you would do in a race (I am sure you knew this).

Let’s just say that after that run .. my legs were begging for forgiveness!

Next week we attempt again and the weekend after until it is all very normal for my legs. Now if only I could find a way of ridding my legs of cramps …!?

HKL

Fitness, Inspiration, Run, Running, Talks

Last night was FABZ!

Modern Athlete
Modern Athlete
Modern Athlete Seminar
Modern Athlete Seminar

Last night was the inaugural Modern Athlete Club Seminar, out at the Gooderson Fabz Hotel, in Lonehill. #RunTalk was all about just that … running. For the first event it was extremely well attended by a wonderful active crowd of runners both novices and those with loads more experience.

The host for the evening was the Modern Athlete Magazine editor @Sean_Falconer. He did a superb job as host, his passion for the sport was evidently clear throughout the evening. If you’ve ever been to a race that he has been the MC, I am sure you will agree that he is quite the character and adds so much humour and colour to the event! Last night was just that, an informative evening that was also relaxing and fun!

We were in for a treat, we had Ray Orchison, Bennie Roux, Justin Strout and Rene Kalmer all ready to share their experience with us. They certainly did a great job of keeping our attention throughout the evening.

Ray Orchison
Ray Orchison

Ray Orchison is the Modern Athlete’s club coach and known for coaching athletes wanting to run marathons. He touched on various points during his “20 minute” talk. For me these were the main take outs from his chat, that we should be focusing on our weak areas during the winter months. Concentrate on 3 main areas, Endurance, Strength and Speed. At least 3 times a week if you’re able to focus on these three areas, For endurance use a slow pace, that isn’t walking by the way, it’s at a pace that you’re able to have a decent conversation with your running mate and hear their responses. To improve on your speed, you need to grow your strength and endurance ..simple as that! Train your core with those plank exercises at gym so as to develop your strength. Lastly, he pointed out that in the event of an injury make sure that you address the cause and not just the symptom. You want to get rid of the problem and not have it continue to persist to a point you give up running for a while or altogether! Remember that when training to always select a programme that fits your level of fitness and the distance you intend running…

“Dreams don’t work unless you do – Ray shared”

Bennie Roux and I
Bennie Roux and I

Bennie Roux (@bennieroux) was next, man he was a character of note and so freaking awesome to listen to! He is an Ultra Runner mastering both the road and the trails. I have personally attempted Trail running via the local Parkruns, and I think until last night parked the whole idea of ever attempting another. I think after listening to him and how passionate he is about trail running .. he MIGHT have excited me enough to attempt it just one more … 🙂

One of the slides he shared with us, was about the differences between Road and Trail runners. I laughed … Roadies are similar to models with all their branded clothing, while Trail runners look like “homeless” individuals! There was no malice intended I assure you or intend to insult.

If you’re planning on attempting Trail running, he recommends you start off with short distances and build it up slowly. Don’t go investing in expensive gear until you’re sure it’s a discipline you are keen on pursuing. Shoes by the way should be at the bottom of your list of items to buy, assuming you already have your road running shoes of course. Those will do to begin with. Start off with a hydration carry pack and as you increase your distances, you will eventually get to the point where you will have a medical kit, running food, mobile phone, eyewear and a form of GPS watch to assist you while running around the serene forests filled with the singing of the birds and rustling sounds of the trees. He too encouraged all to strengthen our core, glutes with various forms of exercises.

“If it’s not on Strava, it didn’t happen – Bennie shared”

Enjoy this clip shared by Bennie on how to become an Ultra Runner …

At the end of the next speaker’s session, Justin Strout, I won this book  “The Barry Holland Story” and breakfast at the City Lodge Group of Hotels for two I believe .. must confirm. Justin is the Owner of Healthy Brands trading as Atkins SA.

He chatted to us about nutrition if you haven’t guessed, yet. Primarily about their product the Atkins Low-Carb diet, understanding the benefits of a low-carb lifestyle and healthy snacking.

I won!
I won!

I like that he mentioned that it can take between 2 – 4 weeks for your body to adapt and transition from using carbs to fat for fuel. We don’t get rid of carbs altogether though, we just reduce the quantity we consume to no more than 50g per day. WOW!

Along with the carbs goes the sugar too… you didn’t think you could keep that now did you?!

If you’re keen to learn more ..visit their website here.

Rene Kalmer and I
Rene Kalmer and I

Finally, the finale … the show stopper for the evening .. the moment we’d all been waiting for, Sean welcomed Rene Kalmer to the floor!

Such an amazing person! I thoroughly enjoyed listening to her. Learning about her journey to date and her aspirations in life. Last night though, was all about her Road to Rio – #myjourney – her hashtag on the subject.

Rene is currently one out of five female marathon runners training hard for 3 positions in the South African Athletics team traveling to Rio next year! Yep only 3 vacant posts… talk about pressure!

She’s currently nursing a hip injury, and we wish her speedy recoveries in time to run the required sub 2h30 marathon in order to make it to the Olympics in Rio.

A little bit of trivia on Rene I learnt last night. She is a qualified teacher .. did you know that :-), enjoys reading autobiographies and is currently sponsored by the Modern Athlete and Adidas.

“Turn a setback into a comeback – shared Rene”

Our Host Sean Falconer
Our Host Sean Falconer

Just like that our evening came to an end!

It was a fantastic evening, well worth it. Sean was a fantastic host, and the speakers he shared with us were amazing and super inspiring for me. I’ll be reading the Modern Athlete in anticipation of the next #RunTalk!

Thank you Sean!

HKL

Experiences, Family, Fitness, Kids Entertainment, Life, Parenting, Quotes, Weekend

Weekend .. what weekend?

Triathlon Training
Triathlon Training

 “STRENGTH doesn’t come from what you CAN do. It come from OVERCOMING the things you ONCE thought you COULDN’T ” – unknown

What an amazing weekend it was! This was weekend 2 of training, since my June off month. Saturday morning we went off to Bishop’s Ridge for a group cycling session. It was really fantastic! My legs started off slow getting all warmed up, but they eventually got there.

Cycle Training in the Cradle - Photo Credit DadD
Cycle Training in the Cradle – Photo Credit DadD

We were an amazing group, the experienced and the not so experienced riders. What made it fun, was that there was never any pressure on any of us to keep up, but yes to keep pedalling and do your best! I am extremely happy that legs didn’t cramp once during the ride. Normally during the hills they start to complain, this time round, they just kept on giving and asking for more.

In total it was a 40km ride, so am hoping that we increase the distance next weekend just a tad more.

Later on Saturday afternoon, I hit the pool. Not quite brick swimming, but I hit the pool for a 2km technique training session. Pool was nice and quite, see picture above. I am enjoying the now bi-weekly pool sessions and my times are improving, so hope that means I’m getting pool fit 🙂

Sunday morning I chased hubby out of bed, to keep his promise to meet some of the members from the cycling group for some off-roading. They ended up cycling for 20km and by the sounds of it, loads of fun! It has been a few long months since he was last on his MTB, so am very happy he did it.

Hubby informed me over the weekend that the Minion Characters would be at the local Toys R Us , all part of the Minions movies release last week Friday 10th July here in South Africa.

 

 

Sadly, we got there a few hours too late. I wasn’t impressed and felt really bad for our young man and friend that would have enjoyed the experience I am sure. Next best thing was Cafe Smile , our young man knows exactly where it is. He has the best time ever when he is there. I’ve mentioned them before, but I will mention it again. This place is super cool because of their outdoor play area. Yes, there are many more coffee places with Kiddies Play area these days. This one has the parents sitting out in the play area with the kids, feels rather secure and a host of activities for all age groups .. if you are still a children that is. Smile is always busy and making a booking before you go is a pretty cool idea.

It's all about that base - Photo Credit Ms T
It’s all about that base – Photo Credit Ms T

They also have a real Pizza oven, where your kids can go and make their own pizza. I’m still not sure if this is entirely just for their benefit or for the parents. It is however loads of fun, I know our son just loves it. Watching our young man and his mate top up the pizza base ..mostly on their own, was terrific fun. They are growing up so fast.

Parents socializing
Parents socializing

While all this is happening, the parents can play catch up. The restaurant serves a decent menu for both the little ones and the big people, best is that they have friendly staff attending to your needs.

Give them a try when next seeking a child friendly venue. As a last on them, they also cater for birthday parties for the kids .. themed too if you want.

Just us catching up - Photo Credit Ms T.
Just us catching up – Photo Credit Ms T.

When we eventually got home our young man was exhausted! He had just enough energy to help me wash our bikes, played a little bit more with his own trucks and asked to be bathed. HUH! Yep .. he had, had enough. He wanted his bath and bed… but first his milo…

Needless to say, I didn’t get to go for my run. Tonight I’m going to have to get active and not relax with Madam Secretary as I’d planned. I did however, get to watch someone that inspires me in my Triathlon journey, cross the finish line with his wife. Took them just over 14 hours, but they finished and that…. is what this journey is about!

This is Ironman - Sourced Online
This is Ironman – Sourced Online

More training this week, need to get my muscles used to all the attention they are suddenly getting! The cramps need to end…

I leave you with this final quote I sourced online …

HKL

Dare2Tri, Family, Fitness, Kids Entertainment, Races, Toddlers, Tri

6 Months and counting …

It's the weekend ...again!
It’s the weekend …again! : Sourced Online
How fast has the first half of this year been around!

We were discussing the other day at the office, that it feels like just yesterday we were all wishing each other the best for 2015. It won’t be long now, before our office manager comes around asking us again when we plan to take our December leave!

Yoh! Where’s this time racing to?!

First half of the year is over, and I think I can proudly say that I achieved much of what I’d hoped to in terms of my physical activity at least. I managed to run the Dischem21km back in January, did the OmDieDam21km later in March, and my ultimate, the Two Oceans Half Marathon in April. For someone that was initially content with just running a 5km, I’m super impressed with myself.

For this second half of the year, I have the 5150 Ekurhuleni African Championship at the Germiston Lakea triathlon taking place later this year. There are a few before but I’m focused on this one for now. I’m hoping it will be the one that will hook me and drive me towards Ironman in 2016.

Dare To Tri Academy
Dare To Tri Academy

This weekend is time for another weekend of training with the Dare To Tri Academy out in the Eastrand. For me the main focus is the Total Immersion swimming workshop. Targeting both the novice and more experienced Triathlete, who are keen to improve their swimming techniques …efficiency and speed come to mind. Georgie Thomas is an experienced triathlete herself, having completed a number of Full Ironman and Half Ironman Championship events. I enjoy swimming so am super excited to attend this workshop this weekend.

DSTV Kids Xtravaganza
DSTV Kids Xtravaganza : Sourced Online

Then there’s the DSTV KIDS Xtravaganza starts tomorrow and promises to be another opportunity for parents looking for ways to keep their toddlers entertained over the school break.

Children’s favourites Teletubbies and I Can Cook are the star attractions at the DStv Kids Xtravaganza, happening at Vodacom World in Midrand from 4th  July to 9th July. Show start at 09:00; 12:30 and 16:00 followed by 90 minutes in the Fun Zone. Tickets are available at Computicket at R135 a person and includes entrance to the live shows as well as the play time in the Fun Zone.
Expect to be wowed by Dipsy, Laa-Laa, Po and Tinky-Winky characters from the popular Teletubbies can be watched daily on CBeebies (DStv Channel 306). Katy Ashworth presenter of the I can Cook show also be around for a fun session in the kitchen too!
Beautiful Creatures: Sourced Online
Beautiful Creatures: Sourced Online

Then this coming Sunday 5th July,  Monte Casino, Showtime Management and Beautiful Creatures will be at the Piazzo at Monte Casino presenting Beautiful Creatures for FREE!!! Now doesn’t that sound simply amazing! Who doesn’t love a freebie now and then?

The Beautiful Creatures trio will bring interactive sing along shows to audiences on the Montecasino Outdoor Piazza Stage on the following weekends on July 4th and5th at 11h00, 13h00, 15h00 and on the 22nd and 23rd of August 2015 at 11h00, 13h00, 15h00.

The 20 minute shows will feature some of Beautiful Creatures best loved songs, including Imvubu the Happiest Hippo, Lucas the Lazy Lion, Harry the hungry Hadeda and Mafutha the Elephant. So why not take the family over to Monte Casino for a bit of exciting fun for all.

In an effort to regain my running fitness, I’m waking up real early on Sunday to go an run through the streets of Greenside. My legs can feel I’ve not been hitting the road for a while. I need to get my fitness levels up again both for running and cycling.

Pirates 10km Run/Walk : Sourced Online
Pirates 10km Run/Walk : Sourced Online
If you’re not doing much, why not join me and many others on the road to fitness and support the Pirates Running Club at the event this weekend?!

HKL

Beginnings, Cycling, Duathlon, Fitness, hylery, Run, Swim, Tri

Bunny anyone ….?

Photo Courtsey of Ishay Govender-Ypma
Photo Courtsey of Ishay Govender-Ypma

Today started off moody. A grey morning with a touch of mist in the air and evidence of the rain from the night before spread across our driveway this morning.

I’m not sure why, but with winters we tend to wear duller coloured clothing, almost as if we’re reinforcing the weather to ourselves and those around us. Case in point the dress code at the office today, majority of us were in grey. One or more item of clothing on almost all at the office was grey .. reflecting the somber mood the sky above was in today.

Going against my Banting diet, but because it just seems like the best idea at the time the suggestion came a group of us ordered ourselves Bunny Chows. Move those eyes towards the picture above to have an idea of what it is .. should you not know what it is. Basically a portion of the loaf hollowed out and stuffed with a curry of you tasting. YUM!

The bunny, as us locals refer to it, is best eaten using your hands. No knife and fork needed. You break off a piece of bread, dunk it into the curry grabbing a piece of protein or veggie and stuff your mouth! After you’ve chewed and swallowed that scruptious hand of bunny, remember to lick those fingers… it is for that very reason that you can’t eat a bunny with cutlery! Soh-reeeeee!

This meal is however, not just delicious but also extremely filling. I’ve mentioned, it seemed like the best idea at the time the order was placed…. not so much now that I’m feeling all bloated and the idea of taking the rest of the afternoon off to nap seems like a brilliant idea.

I’m not totally unhappy about it though .. as tomorrow part 2 of my Triathlon training begins….

Javier Gomez - Sourced Online
Javier Gomez – Sourced Online

Extremely early tomorrow morning I am supposed to join my new triathlon training group – DARE2TRI – for a few kilometers of road running. Since completing the Two Oceans Half Marathon back over Easter Weekend … I’ve not been as disciplined with my running. This has become evidently apparent during part 1 of Triathlon training during the week. The running part of the training feels like such an effort! Hopefully after tomorrow morning’s run I will begin to get my groove back.

I really didn’t realise one loses the groove so quickly .. and that easily.

Swim - Photo source is online
Swim – Photo source is online

Tomorrow afternoon after a bit of a break from the run, we as a group hit the pool. Yep, we’re very serious about not only burning off all that bunny chow I ate for lunch today but, as a group we have a goal.

There are a few Triathlons taking place over end of this winter, that means we need to get fitness and confidence levels up. Although part of the group are not new, there is a decent number that have been with the group for at least a year. For the rest of us “newbies” it’s more about building our confidence levels in the different disciplines while for the rest it’s more about continuing to build their fitness levels. Last week the pool session was really well attended, I didn’t know almost anyone at the pool with the exception of Kobus whom I’d met last October during my first attempt at the Triathlon sport.

Cycle - Photo source online
Cycle – Photo source online

Come Sunday morning .. even earlier than my start tomorrow, it is time for a road cycle. Last week I unfortunately did not attend the group cycle, our first for this season. Left me full of FOMO I tell you!

Dare2Tri 2015 Group - Source Facebook Group
Dare2Tri 2015 Group – Source Facebook Group

After I saw the group picture following the ride last week, FOMO hit me big time!

Everyone looked amazing in their kit and reading the comments afterwards really left me feeling I’d missed out.

Truth be told I did, but not because I was feeling lazy. Gastro hit me hard last week Friday and it’s only just now deciding to leave me be.

I’m praying really hard that I feel so much better tomorrow and get to participate in all 3 discipline’s training sessions this weekend.

Following now two weeks of structured training, my body is certainly beginning to feel the difference. My legs are, the entire length, feeling tender along with the arms. I have no doubt that by Sunday night my body may be begging me to stop. I won’t! I have a goal. This year’s focus is the 5150 African Championship at the Germiston Lake taking place in November. Incidentally, it is the same venue that my first triathlon attempt fell flat on its face! Depending on how that goes .. the next major triathlon I would like to attempt is the Ironman 70.3 Durban 2016. I’ve never done an ocean triathlon, so it would be a major step for me.

The best part of all this training, is that it will be getting me fit for not only the 94.7 Cycle Challenge 2015 hubby and I are riding in November this year, but also ready for all the main running races I plan to complete later this year and in 2016.

SO … don’t just sit on that couch all weekend! Get Active!

HKL

Cycling, Fitness, hylery, Races, Run, Running, Tri, Two Oceans Marathon

Run.. Swim .. or Cycle?

Run.. Run.. Run..
Run.. Run.. Run..

So I started running by accident. Hubby ran the local Parkrun one cold Saturday morning last year, then tempted me to do the same. Taking up his challenge, off I went one Saturday and attempted it. It was all Trail Running, full of people of all ages, shapes and sizes. There isn’t a prize at the end, it’s just a brilliant way to get people off their couch on a Saturday morning and do something physical. Its all of 5kms and over before the hour is up!

My first one wasn’t too far off hubby’s time, and that I believe was what got be to attempt to do more. Before I knew it, I was waiting for the entries for the Two Oceans to open for 2015. I had it diarised and had made sure that no meetings were planned for the period. Once secured .. the question was “how do I finish it now?

I was soon running more 10km runs, building up towards 21km races. It was awesome fun, I know I’m not really running fast times just yet. I’m not running close to what I should be, if I want to improve these times. I had thought of running the 56km full Two Oceans Marathon in 2016 .. not so sure it’s where I want to go anymore.

Cycling
Cycling

The focus now turns to improving my cycling road confidence. Have cycled twice now with the Cruisers and it’s been loads of fun and learning. First time was an outing where I was almost blown off my bike by a passing truck and this past weekend I participated in my first 50km cycle race for the charity – Bell of Hope for Mental Wellness. Finished it! If it wasn’t for the cramps towards the last 5kms I’d say it went amazing!

Ok! the cold start wasn’t something I thrive to experience a lot of. We started the ride as a group of 5 individuals, Adele, Charysse, Danie, Louise and I. At some point during the initial 10kms … that’s how long my legs take to warm up .. we lost Adele and Danie. I was just cycling way too slow for their liking 🙂 Charysse and Louise would take turns babysitting me .. a bit kak .. but alas .. I’m sure you can count the number of cycle rides I’ve done in one hand. They were super supportive and I’m hoping that in the short future .. I will be dragging them from the front for a change 🙂 The ride was overall extremely well organised, traffic was managed and a fun experience. Hopefully it won’t be so cold next year …

It was also the ideal time for me to try out my Team Vitality Cycle top! Loved it! Now just wish they had a bib that complimented it….

DareToTri_SA
DareToTri_SA

 June 2015 sees the start of my official Triathlon training with the DareToTri group of athletes. They claim a very high success rate of taking individuals from novices to completing their first major Triathlon. I’m hoping to add to their success and complete at least .. this is the main goal for 2015/16 the 5150 Triathlon out in Gauteng and the Midmar Mile. These are both achievable with training, and with the ripple effect .. I will finish the 94.7 Cycle Challenge this year that hubby has so graciously entered us into! Talk about no pressure!

So from Monday 1 June … I have a strict training schedule I need to be following …

On a different topic altogether … our young man is now officially sleeping through the night .. no nappy .. no wetness in the middle of the night to deal with .. touch wood .. it will continue that way. We’re super proud of our boy! We have a full bag and some loose ones now, and gorgeous bin for them not being used!

This afternoon hubby went to collect him from school, our young man and little L have become real good mates. Home time today they both decided that they would be travelling with L’s gran home, so promptly sat themselves down in the gran’s car and refused to budge. L demanded to confirm himself that our young man’s car seat indeed was stuck to the car and could not be moved between cars. I’m sure he was entirely convinced but allowed it the adults to think they had. His face on the other hand spoke volumes .. and nothing pleasant mind you!

I see us having to plan another play date in the not so distant future … justsaying!

HKL

Beginnings, Cycling, Firsts, Fitness, Run, Tri

What’s up dude?

Completed my first Tri!
Completed my first Tri!

This past Saturday I finally did it! Yep! I completed my very first Tri-Sprint. CradleRock a TriRockSA event, was meant to be a sprint .. but YOH! it did NOT feel like one! So much of hills wena!

I found the swim so freaking refreshing! I completed the 500m ahead of the main pack and enjoyed. It certainly tells me that the mental block is history! I have to thank my mate Minessa for introducing me to Smart-Tri leader Kristian for that. Through them, I got me some open water swimming experience, and that’s how I managed to motor it through the dam on Saturday.

The cycle transition was on the slow side. I started cramping as I got out the water and for a while as I attempted to put on my cycling shoes. Drank some water and unmounted my bike and made my way to the road. Cycle start was on an uphill. Cramp seemed to have calmed down so I mounted my bike and made my way on up the hill for 20kms. It wasn’t long and I had to get off my bike, my cramp had clearly not gone. So, instead of just chilling while everyone else cycled past me, I walked it off and stopped while I stretched me leg. It finally left me and on the bike I was playing catchup to the others and motoring like my life depended on it. Well it kinda did, I seriously wanted to finish this Tri! I had to prove to myself that I had it in me to complete it.

When it was time to run, the sun was belting it! It was seriously HOT! We carried on, and we climbed those hills and ran them down twice to complete the required 5kms.

Nothing will ever beat the smile on my hubby’s face, when he saw me cross the finish line! EVER! It made the cramps and the heat punishment all worthwhile!

One downside of the day was the lack of hydration in the running route, taking into account the heat, the least TriRock SA organisers could have done is place a watering point along the route. The other was that after all that effort they didn’t have any medals to hand out to the participants. How do you organise an event, promise medals to finishers and don’t hand these out at the finish line? I had assumed that because the sprint tri was a last-minute decision, they had no medals for us. I was wrong! The main event the day after, yesterday, also didn’t have any medals handed out!

Seriously! TriRockSA from what I’ve gathered has held these events in other provinces, so why was this event so mismanaged? When they marketed the sprint event, they targeted it at novices and those who wanted to try a Triathlon for the first time. This wasn’t very encouraging. A few tweets requesting where I can get the results from .. seem to be landing on deaf ears too. I thought reputable organizations with Social Media accounts would be more accountable?

Team Tri First Timers
Team Tri First Timers

This pic on the right is all the peeps I knew at the Tri on Saturday, attempting it for the first time. Well done Ilse, Charlene, and Fiona!

We all had hurdles to get over and we did!

Looking forward to the next one(s)! Before that though, I have a few 21km runs to complete, road cycle races and maybe some open water only swims too!

Loving all the active work and especially my coach .. hubby and family’s support!

I’m doing what I’ve always loved and has been dormant for years!

HKL

Fitness, Races, Run

Mixed bag weekend

Minessa and I at my 1st Triathlon attempt
Minessa and I at my 1st Triathlon attempt

What a weekend this past one was!

Friday was uneventful, evening part anyway. During the day I’d popped into Tribe on Main and purchased myself a race belt. Until then, I had no idea what it was. Needless to say I was disappointed when I saw what it was. Nothing really exciting, just a standard belt, similar to the one Garmin uses for my heart rate monitor. Only this time it has strings hanging off it used to hold one’s race number during the bike and run sections of a Triathlon.

Saturday was mostly about getting ready for my first Triathlon, the rest was groceries as one does at month ends. Managed to get our little man a set of new running shoes too, because he uses them as brakes for his bike, they don’t last too long at the moment. The nerves also kicked in late Saturday afternoon. Yep and toilet and I were friends all the way into the morning just before we left for the race.

We got to the race reasonably easy. However, the venue for the event looked rather dodge when we got there. Broken glass on the ground, so we had to dodge those carrying your bike and bag with gear, while pushing a pram. Did you try picture that? 🙂 Then as we walked on further there had clearly been some form of festivities at this park the day or night before as it was ridden with empty bottles  of a variety of drinks and empty food packets. Not the best reception I tell you. I got to the registration building, did my thing got my number and swimming cap before my family and I found a spot next to the dam.

Throughout this the wind picked up and JJ was restless. He has always hated the wind. I recall back last year, he was about 4 months when we visited Cape Town. The one day was extremely windy and he just cried and cried until we got into the car away from the wind. Yesterday was pretty much the same.

The event organisers eventually informed us that the mini Triathlon had been downgraded to a Duathlon because the wind had made the waters too rough, and this also included the Kiddies triathlon. Alas, the main sprint Triathlon was going ahead for the seniors. I was now super nervous! Still when my heat was called up, off I went to the starting line, got into the water and that .. is where I started feeling the panic creep in … when the announcer says that the mini triathlon that was for novices had been called off because the waters were just too rough! Hmmm … really dude! How can you say that! When, here I am attempting my first in this group! How can you say that! I guess normal people would have packed up there and then and moved on, not me! I stayed frozen in my spot in the water!

Water wasn’t that cold, I’ve swam in colder waters before where your whole body goes numb it’s that cold!

The whistle was blown and everyone started swimming, me included. A short while in I realised my goggles weren’t over my eyes! LOL! Dropped those pretty quickly over my eyes. Then I looked down as I do normally in the pool and all I saw was murky water! I looked up and I don’t see a support boat near me. I swim some more. It just feels like I’m not getting anywhere, yet the shoreline is drifting father away from me. My mind races! What if this .. and that .. and this happens? I look up again, still no boat close by, swimmers are slowly moving farther away from me around the first buoy while others are reaching the mainland after their 750m swim or thereabouts .. you see the buoys kept moving farther out because of the wind.

That’s it! I took an executive decision and made my way back to the shore. Today, I realise the distance I’d swam out and back to the shore I would have been halfway through the swim route! Too late! For the first time in my life I quit something I’d started! What a kak feeling!!

After getting my bike and gear from the transition area, my family and I drove home basically in silence. I was so feeling sorry for myself. Disappointed with the fact I’d not completed something I’d been wanting to achieve in the longest time.

Thank you to all my friends and family for your words of encouragement. As hubby says, “Lift that chin up, train some more. Reach out to the professionals in your circle and focus on doing the next one!” So, that’s what I’m doing. Today is the first day of training towards my next one! Can’t confirm if December 14 will be the one .. but I’m working to actually completing my next attempt!

On a more happy note, this morning I dropped off our son at school. It’s been 3 weeks now. I was half expecting our usual routine where he cries foul when I drop him off. Nope! Not today! Today he was a big boy! He reached out to one of the teachers to carry him and didn’t shed a tear! Yes! Our young man seems to have finally settled into his new routine!

Now to focus on my Nike Soweto 10 km Run in November!

HKL

Cycling, Duathlon, Fitness, Gym, Races, Running

Boi have we been an active family lately!

dadD and dadE
dadD and dadE

It certainly does feel like hubby, JJ and I have been physically active the last couple of weekends. Not sure how we got caught up with all the running and cycling, but we’re all actually enjoying every minute of it I promise you!

September 6, 2014 hubby and I entered and completed our second Duathlon this year. Momentum Health Oatwell powered by PeptoPro started a new series this year to cater for the avid cyclist and runners out here in Gauteng. It’s been a great series thus far, with the last race in the series taking place October 25, 2014. I’ve found the races to be both challenging to the beginner and the more experienced athlete. It caters more for the lovers of the bush as the cycling is Mountain Biking and the running is Trail. It is definitely ideal for the family to spend some quality time outdoors. There are races for kids with their own bikes, mom, dad and the teenagers who don’t believe they are kids anymore. If there’s a parent that doesn’t want to ride nor run with a child too young to participate, they have activities to keep the children entertained too.

We will definitely be participating next year too! 

If you’re out here next year .. why not give it a try too? It’s an amazing way to keep the family fit and health!

Our Reward
Our Reward

Last weekend was a busy one in terms of running at least. Saturday morning I woke up and did the local Parkrun. I didn’t manage to break through my 30 minute barrier yet, but it was fun. I met up with Stephan and Lucy there too, we all ended up running at our own pace and meeting up again at the finish line. If you haven’t done one yet, what exactly are  you waiting for already! Either visit the Parkrun official website to see where the nearest one to you is, or ask around the office. I have no doubt someone is either doing the run every weekend or is able to direct you to who is 🙂 It is such a great family event, with no pressure from anyone, other than yourself, to get active and enjoy the outdoors!

Sunday morning there was to be no lazing around either, we participated in the 4th Annual Douglasdale Community Police Forum Fun Run . Yep, this was another family fun-filled event. It turned out to be an amazing learning curve for me, where my new-found love for running is concerned. 

Hubby and JJ entered the 5km Walk while I did the 5Km run. I found the route contained just the right amount of challenge with a mix of flat runs and hills. My education came when we hit the first up-hill. I confirmed that it is certainly a mind over matter challenge here. The minute I saw the hill, my mind switched off and told the rest of me that it wasn’t going to happen today. No way were my legs going to carry my body up that hill! This topped by the vision of a multitude of other individuals in the race walking the hill just didn’t help!

During the initial phase of the race, I had run alongside a woman. I don’t know her from anywhere. However, we seemed to be running at the same pace for a while then somehow I left her behind me. I had no clue how far behind me she was either. Suddenly from behind me I see her alongside me as I walked up the hill. Very sternly she tells me to get my ass into gear and run the hill! I’m like .. lady there ain’t no way I’m gonna run it! For a second I thought she would have just left me and carried on. NO! She would NOT give up so easily! Not missing a beat, she turns to me and tells me words that I will hold onto at every uphill going forward. She said to me “Don’t look up, look down as the road looks flat then and you WILL run the hill!” Trues BOB! I ran the long and short hills left in the race and all the way to the finish! I didn’t walk again and kept pace with the stranger woman that shared this running tip with me! I am grateful lady!

If like me you’re struggling the uphills .. why not give this tip a try to see if it helps you?

Reward for the family
Reward for the family

Turns out after the race was done that I need to make more of an effort to run in the week too. It’s the only way I’m going to enjoy the weekend runs more. Right now I have fun, but I find that I can struggle some from time to time. So, for the next week that’s my goal and it seems to be working. I ran my first, yes flat, 10km that wasn’t in a race last night in roughly 58 minutes. I was thrilled but hubby wouldn’t let me enjoy the moment. Very quickly stated that it was on a treadmill and not quite reality. I get his point .. but hey let me enjoy the fact that I managed to run it all on a treadmill with no break .. reality or not.. it was an achievement for me .. and my Nike+

It’s only been roughly 4 months that I’ve started all this long distance running, and to be honest I’m enjoying it a lot more than I ever thought I would be.

Who would have thought!

HKL