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

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Fitness, Running

A km at a time …

Quote

This quote right here was my reality for so long, as I’ve mentioned before in earlier posts.

I’ve now been “running” for about 3 months, and I’m so loving it! I can still not believe how far I’ve come. To think it all started with my first Parkrun in Lonehill. That first one I was really determined to just complete it, that I managed to complete it in a decent time .. well that peaked my interest into this world.

So, I managed to complete 5 x 5 km Parkruns now, 1 x official Trail running 5 km as well and 1 x 10 km! I type that, and I still can’t quite appreciate what I have achieved so far. Thrilled and excited now to push myself a little more.

There are goals out there I need to still meet this year, and this is really getting me closer to these goals. A Nike Soweto 10km in November and my very first Triathlon in December. All very exciting I tell you .. for me anyway 🙂

The reason for the post was actually to share that last night the 26th August 2014 I managed to run the WHOLE 5 KM on the treadmill non-stop! No let me take a breather, or I’m aching let me rest a while .. nothing! Nada! Niks ekse! To top it, in a personal best as well of 30.11 minutes according to my Nike+ app. I’m getting there .. not yet broken the 30 minute barrier .. but I’m closer .. a km at a time .. I will get there!

The uphill is still my challenge, but I know, that just like I managed to complete this 5 km last night without a break .. I too will conquer the uphill and one day begin to run a race without walking the uphill!

Hills .. Hills ...

Next year I plan to venture into the Half Marathon world, and hope to complete the Two Oceans 21 km race! To be honest, now it feels to me, as far off as the 5 km and the 10 km felt a couple of weeks back … unachieveable!

I am determined to get to that finish line not only before the cut off .. but also hopefully in a decent time too!

1 KM at a time …

Are you jogging yet?

Have you achieved some of the goals you set for 2014, or have you moved the goal post?

HKL

Beginnings, Fitness, Gym, hylery

Running .. yes me!

Had you said to me a year ago that I would be running a kilometre, I would have laughed in your face!

Yep until recently, the furthest I’d ever run was a 400m sprint at school… I’m sure I’ve mentioned this to you before.

So, besides the Parkruns, I’m now doing Half Duathlons roughly about the same distance as the Parkruns, 5km. This weekend I’ve entered the Redhill School Ride ‘n Run a 6km event. I was originally going to join a friend in the colour run taking place this weekend too, but as the Duathlons are trail running and not road, thought it best to do the 6km trail event.

It doesn’t stop there, next weekend I’m entering my first 10km road run! Oh yeah! To mark this occasion it’s going to be held in Soweto too! How awesome is that for my first 10km?!

So yes, this is all me working at my fitness, and prep work towards the 94.7 Cycle Challenge in November and my first Triathlon in December!

Yes, between the running there is some Spinning as well.

 

UPDATE!!

I’ve entered the 10km….

HKL

Nike Soweto Marathon

Beginnings, Duathlon, Fitness, Parenting, Running

Past mid July … already!

Road Fun Run

The last few weekends have been lacking some physical activities in the form of exercise. Mainly due to ill health and recovery. This past weekend I seem to have tried to make up for it.

Saturday morning I ran our usual Parkrun at 8am. Although the mornings are starting to warm up, the air still had a bit of a bite to it. Our friend Stephan joined us as well, although I let him finish way ahead of me due to his amazing fitness. That said, I had a good recovery run beating my time the previous week, but not yet beating my personal best time! I will get there.

The afternoon Stephan and I also did a charity run, a 6.7 km run post Mandela Day. It was so much fun, although I felt 80% of the run. Post that last run on Saturday, it really does feel like Trail running is much easier than road running … or perhaps it’s just that I am not too familiar with road running?

Stephan and I before the start of the 6.7 km Fun Run

So, yes I think I’m back and really making a good attempt at getting fitter and ready for the races we want to enter in the remainder of the year. This weekend hubby and I are a team and have entered the Momentum Health Oatwell Dual Cross Series event #1. I’m so looking forward to it, and really hope it’s loads of fun, so hoping that it leads us to completing the rest of the series too.

Later this year I’ve also entered a Triathlon and don’t forget the biggest road cycling race in Jozi over the same period. So much committed .. really looking forward to ticking these boxes!

Action without vision is only passing time, Vision without action is merely day dreaming, BUT vision with action can change the world – Nelson Mandela

This weekend our young man also surprised us dads by starting to refer to us as “daddee“. The whole weekend was daddee .. this and daddee that … we of course loved it! We have progressed from being referred to as dada. He is clearly setting up his vocabulary database, Sunday morning I say to him “morning” .. he responds by saying his version of “morning too! Right now, he has morning, daddee and amennn, with emphasis on the n. Of these daddee is the word used with more frequency and commitment.

Really enjoying this ride!

HKL

Beginnings, Cycling, Fitness

JJ’s first bike race .. ride!

This morning bright and early JJ, hubby and I packed up our young man’s bike and helmet and made our way to Melrose Arch for JJ’s first “Cycle” race. It was all for a good cause, and we saw it as an opportunity to introduce our son to the world of sports and cycling. 

 

JJ was in his element. The moment the bike was on the ground he was on it and racing off down the road. Hubby went to register our young man while I chased him down the road. Unreal how a few weeks makes such a huge difference. Just a month back, JJ wanted very little to do with the bike, and this last week it’s all he wants. You mention to him the bike, and he rushes off looking for it.

The process to the start of the race was a tad slow. I’m not sure if the organisers knew what they were doing, or if they were just not aware what it would take to arrange this race.

While we waited for the start, JJ as mentioned was roaming the grounds and sussing out the competition. He and another young man hooked up as men their age do, and rode the route a while. At some point JJ motored away trying to catch up with dadD, leaving behind his mate. While this happened his mom arrived and asked him to follow her back to their table. He promptly turns to her and says “Ek wag vir my maaitjie(sp)” – basically “I’m waiting for my mate” referring to JJ as his new-found mate. Just too cute to be young!

It was really too adorable watching these two strangers, who literally only just met, chilling together like they’ve been mates forever! Sad, that as adults we’re not this spontaneous when it come to meeting new people. We have all these pre conditions or boxes that need to be ticked before we consider someone any good to be “worthy” of our friendship?

Following some song and dance, literally, the race eventually started. Off everyone went, parents and kids everywhere. This was the 18 months to 3 year olds. A tad large age group I think, and the distance too a tad far. Yet another reason I think the organisers weren’t too sure about what they were doing. Children this young get bored pretty quick, and this became evidently clear as the race progressed due to the many tears along the route and parent carrying either child and pulling bike or pulling bike while child walked in front.

During the ride JJ had enough and didn’t really want to ride anymore. Nor did he want to be pulled along. Eventually we settled on me carrying him and dadD carrying the bike for a few metres. As you may have guessed, this too became too much for our young man and he decided that he wanted to ride his bike again. He wanted no one to pull or push him he wanted to create his own route to the finish line!

We reached the finish line and JJ was awarded his first, of many we hope, medals.

He wasn’t first nor was he last, but that wasn’t the aim of the race. Fun to be had by all riding was. I do think this was achieved.

HospiceWITS was the charity being supported today. Nathalie du Toit – South African Olympic Medalist – was present too showing her support to the day. 

Once home JJ was too exhausted. Some juice and he was off to bed for a good nap. He slept all morning waking up just before lunch.

He ravished his lunch and then demanded his time with dadD’s iPad. I’m not sure what it is that he finds so fascinating with it, all I see him doing is move the screens from left to right. We’re not permitted to touch it while he is busy with it. Sigh .. a sign of things to come?

Carte Blanche is on, a sure sign that the weekend is over. Time to get things ready for the week ahead. I have much to do and achieve.

It has been a weekend way too relaxed in terms of physical exercise. Non achieved!

Tomorrow we’re back on the grind mill. I have either a bike or road run this coming weekend and I need to be ready for it!

Feeling blessed!

HKL

Beginnings, Celebrations, Firsts, Fitness, hylery

Milestones….

For many years I made myself believe that I could not manage to run more than 400m at any given time. I had accepted that this was for my sisters and hubby, I believed that I would run out of breath before I could finish and my feet wouldn’t get me to the finish line.

This past weekend I achieved this “great” feat that for the longest time seemed unachievable in my eye. Friends had mentioned about a new craze here called Parkruns. If there’s a public park near you, there’s a good chance there’s a 5km run there on Saturday mornings.  Hubby did his first one two weeks back, but sprained his ankle in the process.  Sad state of affairs! Before this though, we had agreed that we’d alternate weekend runs. So last week Saturday was mine. Relying totally on my spinning of the last 30 odd days, I started off. Although there were moments through the run I felt like calling it quits…I just couldn’t allow myself to. Needless to say I finally managed to finish and ended up 7th in my age group. Not bad huh?!

image

Tonight I managed to achieve yet another milestones.  I recall in high school how I feared swimming the 1500m Freestyle.  It felt long and exhausting.  I did it once then and never again … until recently.

For the last few swims I have managed to push myself to swim at least 1000m.  My intention has been to increase it by 500m every month. Last week I started feeling like I was ready for the increase.

Last night I got into the pool and just swam. For the first 30 minutes I just swam. Eventually stopped after 30 min to see how far I had swum…. O.M.G! I had completed 1450 already. Wow! Wow! From this point I pushed myself to reach the 2km mark … so we skipped the 1500m and reached 2000m just like that.

I’m really chaffed with myself.

Looking forward to achieving more of these milestones.

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I’ve decided I will do a few more parks close to us before I venture an increase in the mileage.

So far though, it’s been fun. What’s next….

HKL

Airline, Fitness, Running, Weekend

Back home again ..

Delish cupcake from Charly's Bakery
Delish cupcake from Charly’s Bakery

The breakaway was awesome, less the wind. We managed to spend some quality time as a family, watched our little man grow and explore a different world to what he is accustomed to and much more. Importantly though, we all had fun!

During the break we got to visit places that I’ve been wanting us to see for the longest time, but there was always a reason why these could wait! Places like Bo Kaap and Charly’s Bakery. We managed to visit a few beaches, but JJ wouldn’t have any of it. It’s not the first time this has happened, so now I’m not sure if he has something against beach sand or the cold beach waters of the Western Cape. For some reason I think he just hates the sand .. we really hope he out grows this phobia as both parents love the beach.

Another reason the break was pleasing is that our little man and hubby’s sister managed to spend some quality time together. See aunty Shaz for some reason wasn’t comfortable spending time alone with our young man. You know how there are some dads who refuse to hold their baby child until a certain age as they are not comfortable holding any child younger? They fear that they could cos harm to the youngster, which of course isn’t true, but hey .. so it was really good to see her make time for JJ and actually enjoy it .. although I fear she would never admit to that or perhaps she may. You see she has offered to babysit our young man when next we venture out her way … will keep you posted on that one.

Bo Kaap
Bo Kaap

During our stay in Green Point we went for regular walks along the promenade daily, and I was inspired to get me feet sorted by the experts at the Sports Science Institute by Podiatrist Chris DelPierre. It was a brilliant experience and Chris was amazing and I got to experience how the professional sportsmen such as the WP Rugby team players, and Bokke are treated when injured during play. He explained the pain I felt in the past and the cause, and his recommended treatment. Last night I finally tried it out. Started off well but after 30 minutes my worst fears became reality. Hubby reckons I need to give it a few more attempts. I shall …

While in Cape Town, hubby spent a good part of the day working and keeping up with his office. This was part of the agreement while we were away .. so I couldn’t complain much about that now could I ..

Following a week in Cape Town, it was time for us to move on to our next destination, Tulbagh. Here we stayed at beautiful old farm called Manely Wine Lodge. Quiet place out in what seems like the middle of nowhere. The manageress of the lodge a gorgeous young lady by the name of Dapheny was amazing. Super helpful and had her guests attended to by her staff who were ever so friendly and always smiling. I’ve become so used to not receiving this type of service back home, that I found it unusual … in a good way! The whole town seems like it has stopped in time. One main street with not too many of the fashion stores we’re accustomed to out here, and no competition among the large supermarkets either. Surprisingly a SPAR and their only competition being family run superettes or spaza shops.

The area has some really great wines being produced by the local wine farms, so much so we ordered ourselves two boxes shipped out to us here. Yes, that’s how amazing their wines are!

Cape Sunsets
Cape Sunsets

Sunday bright and early we made our way to the airport, arriving slightly late for our check in. It now seems that in the rush of dropping off our rented car and checking in we left a toy hubby bought earlier in the week for our young man. Very unfortunate, as JJ had literally hand-picked the toy himself and was becoming quite fond of the toy.

Funny we’re almost at the start of our first weekend post our break, and it feels like it was a while ago we were in Cape Town. Fortunately, this has been a short week for us, and one where I’ve concluded our bookings for our next breakaway! More on that later ….

While we enjoyed the pleasures of life other realities happened around us…. OP court case continues in Pretoria and Malaysia Airways is searching for a missing plane.

For the rest .. life continues as normal!

HKL

Father and Son, Fitness, Gym

Wind Wind Go Away!

Charley's Bakery
Charley’s Bakery

Today started off rather low-key. Hubby went to gym while JJ and I chilled some at home. At some point over the last 48 hours, hubby decided he was finally ready for tattoo number 3. While JJ and I were chilling I decided to surf the net in search of possible tattoo artist out here in Cape Town. There are a few, but we decided to base our decision on this list of supposedly the best Cape Town has to offer in this field. We hit the road and did our best to locate the top three on the list in the hopes that at least one of them had an opening this week. The experience left much to be desired really. Sins of Style the artists were nowhere to be located and the others were fully booked! Basically we travel back to Jozi sans a new tattoo!

For a while now, every trip to Cape Town I’ve wanted to visit Charly’s Bakery. After I thought I had located the address on our Garmin, we let it lead us finally to this famous local bakery. Oh dear me, we landed up somewhere in the south of Cape Town. Let me just state that the area we ended up in does not have the best of reputations in this side of the world in terms of safety. Hubby got wound up so fast, a yoyo could not compete! Eventually we used hubby’s Samsung S4 and Google Maps to direct us and voila we were standing at the bakery in no time at all!

We took a few pictures in the bakery, and order some cakes for us with coffee before sitting outside to enjoy them. Yep the cakes were amazing! The wind made it a tad bit uncomfortable, further distressing was that the tent they have outside their front door needed attention and their suppliers did this while we sat there enjoying our cakes! I hastened hubby to finish eating quick so that we could get out of there in case the pole they were busy replacing left their hands and landed on us!

Home for the afternoon, and we took our now “regular” walk to the local park so that JJ could spend some time outdoors running around with dadD. While they were enjoying the park I decided to go for a run along the promenade. It certainly was a beautiful experience and totally understand why those that are fortunate enough to live out on the coast take this opportunity and appreciate the “fresh” air .. in most cases and beautiful scene and sunsets.

Jogging with my son
Jogging with my son

Rest of the evening was low-key, JJ was asleep by 730pm. Yep he is out for the count much later while we here. Hubby and I caught up with the Oscar Pistorius(OP) case, and were both rather disappointed in yesterday’s witness Darren Fresco who came across as arrogant and attempting to protect OP while giving his testimony during questioning my the prosecutor. – UPDATE: this morning during cross-examination Darren seems to have incriminated himself and accused of “fabricating his responses”. We will wait and see how his responses affect him in the future….

Right now though, I’m alone in the apartment while hubby and JJ have gone off to meet with the in-laws. Some “me-time” for me while OP’s case continues in the background.

It’s funny a week ago I couldn’t wait to start this break, we’re now halfway through it. I guess as quickly as we want our goals or trips to arrive, just as quickly the trip itself goes by and before you know it you’re back at your desk.

HKL

Fitness, Running

Staying Fit …

Swazi Living Fit
Swazi Living Fit

This afternoon I received a request to like a page on Facebook. I knew who it was from but was curious to see what it was all about. Many a time I receive similar requests only to discover it’s really not my cup of tea.

Reading through the page I found that my friend, the pages author, also has a Fitness Blog called Swazi Living Fit. It’s a relatively new blog, but with loads of promise. I know her personally and admire her enthusiasm for life, fitness and especially running!

I’m really looking forward to reading her post on eating healthy, how to get started as a newbie runner etc from someone I know and have confidence in her abilities.

So if you have a few minutes to spare .. have a look at her blog.

HKL

Father and Son, Fitness

How busy was that weekend!

My goodness how fast did that weekend go by!? Did you find it went by just as fast for you?

Our Saturday morning help is on maternity leave, not yet sure for how long, so this weekend was different in that we managed to have two lay in days. We got up as usual bright and early to entertain the young man ruling the roost at the moment, as well as feed him. Before we knew it our garden help had arrived to start working, then it was breakfast time for JJ and the garden help and before I knew it we had to get ready for JJ’s first swimming lesson in 2014. While all this was happening hubby introduced our garden help to the new gadget I bought online in the week, a power hose. He was so over the moon he wanted to hose anything and everything, even items that weren’t dirty he insisted they needed a bit of a wash!

Lesson kinda was a mixed bag of emotions really. We arrived a tad late .. OK .. I guess 15 minutes isn’t considered a tad right, so we were late. Still the 15 minutes we had in the pool was just enough considering how our young man has felt about the pool lately. It was a mad take off t-shirts and step into the pool, literally, so that we could join the other two dads and sons. From that very second, JJ was singing his version of one of Luciano Pavarotti’s operas. I’m not sure if it was star stage quality, but it was his version and he stuck to it for the next 10 minutes. For the last 5 minutes I think he appreciated that we weren’t going to leave the water just because he was performing, he calmed down and actually started to take part in the activities with the other boys… and enjoyed it too!

We got home and JJ enjoyed his hearty lunch before going off for his afternoon nap. Two hours later he was up ready for some jelly and a walk around the complex with our dogs. He is loving that he can walk on his own these days, the new-found freedom seemingly gives him much joy. Once the walk was over, we paused some on the grass by the house and rolled around with him and dogs. He loves this quality time there. Hubby lay on his back and pretended to be doing some crunches, little man followed suit. It was just too adorable and he could not stop giggling. I think from all the swimming and exercising JJ had a very active Saturday, and it wasn’t much of a fight following his bath and dinner when it came to being put to bed.

Sunday started no different, sans the garden help of course. I love it when Mark our garden help come, as the garden always looks amazing once he has left. He has a natural ability and in the summer the beautiful colours around the garden with the recently cut grass is something to admire. Hubby went off to the local store to get us the paper, while JJ and I got ready. Today I had arranged for a group of mates to meet up and have a bit of a breakfast as we hadn’t seen each other in years. Jane, Lise, Korien, Bruce, Linda and Ami, as well as Stefan, Lise’s brother. Sadly Bruce and his family could not make it because their home was flooded following all the weekend rain. Jane made the most beautiful blue jersey for JJ .. he will be sporting it this winter so look out for it! JJ had the best time too, he was exploring the park, loving the slides and playing peekaboo with hubby or I as well.

While playing around, once more we experienced subtle hints of bullying. As a friend’s child puts it, bullying from both brown and peach people. I find it very sad that at such tender ages .. they are not so tender. The bullying wasn’t only directed at our son, but I saw it happen between other kids as well. Instinct was to protect my son, which I did, please note no children were harmed during that, but as friends mentioned to me later I need to also watch how JJ resolves it as I won’t always be around to defend or protect him! So, going forward next time we’re at a public place with kids, I will have to breath and take a step back for a bit….

From the breakfast we rushed home as I had a baby shower to attend for an ex colleague. I arrived an hour late .. and our dear friend arrived another hour later! I thought women only arrived that late for their weddings? Anyway, it was a surprise shower which flew by once she arrived. Great afternoon organisers!

At home, we took JJ for a walk again along with the dogs. From there it was literally get ready for Monday mode, as it was bath, feed and bottle time for JJ. I think the day and weekend caught up to him, as he was really tired…. or so we thought. Hubby and I did our separate get ready for the new week routines and settled in for the night.

It truly was an active weekend for us. This coming weekend promises to be just as hectic….

Have a super start to the week!

HKL