Over training is over rated, rest better so that you can train even more" - Nick Yster Bester

Friday, May 29, 2015

It's Comrades Weekend!

Sunday sees the 90th running of the Comrades Marathon, the biggest ultra in the world, with 20000 entries allowed this year.

To all my friends and each and every other runner: "Run strong, persevere and enjoy every moment. I'll be following the race at home but in my heart I'll be right there.

All the best! You are all winners!

Monday, May 25, 2015

My Cycling Experience So Far

Wow, I have never been away from blogging for this long! This needs to be rectified properly starting right now.

Quick update:
I am still cycling and will do a short test run on 1 June. The best part of the cycling experience is that my leg is really feeling good. The worst part... I was just getting the hang of the cycling thing when I injured my back when moving a cupboard. Real bummer!

My back is still stiff and sore but it seems to be healing well. I am literally praying that it does not have any ongoing side effects or symptoms.

Getting back to the title of this post, I must admit I am enjoying parts of the cycling story. It will never be like running for me but it can definitely be a part of my life going forward. Getting used to all the paraphernalia is the worst part... I have to get out of bed 15 to 20 minutes earlier just to put on or clip on everything.

I feel a little like this when I head out the door...

Then we are also moving into winter and morning rides are dark and also getting colder and colder. Being visible is my number one priority. Being warm enough comes next. Cycling on South African roads in the dark is dangerous. There is nothing else to say about that. I think I look like a mobile Christmas tree,

Two strong lights at the front...

...and a headlight with that.

Facing backwards I have a read and a white light. These flash with different intervals and are positioned to lighten up the reflector belts and bibs I wear in different positions.

Then its gloves and helmet and, with the mornings getting colder, ear warmers and glasses to protect the eyes and what not else... Luckily I have numerous buffs to wear in the places I might get really cold. I think I'll continue adding buffs to my apparel as we move deeper into winter.

All in all the cycling experience has been good. It is just not as simple and effective as running. Also not as cheap...

Happy training everyone!

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Touching the Dark Side

Hi everyone! I'm still alive!

Leg update:
My leg felt better at some point and then suddenly just worse again. So I got all the necessary scans and x-rays and what have you done.

The verdict - I have multiple stress/hairline fractures in the upper part of my left femur. Zero impact training allowed for up to three months!

Which brings me to the title of this post... Touching the Dark Side...

I am now the proud owner of the bike below.

Giant ATX 27.5

I am allowed to cycle if I don't feel any pain. If it gets sore that is out as well. I cycled the last time about 20 years ago. So getting into this is quite a mission for me. I am not the world's keenest cyclist. But I will rather cycle than do nothing. Doing nothing is not an option for me.

I needed some motivation to do this as my first few rides on the old racer showed. I decided a new bike is the answer. I was right! This has me excited about cycling again and the fact that I have the off-road option excites me even more. This is my first mountain bike.

I'm enjoying the rides on this bike so far...a lot... I am not crossing to the dark side, but I am touching it and enjoying it. I have a few races in the back of my head...

Happy training everyone!

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Frustrated Runner!

Yes, the pic above sums up my feelings quite well. I haven't been blogging much because I haven't been running much. That about says it all.

My leg is still sore although it is definitely getting better. The main reason I feel so frustrated is because I still don't know what I did to get this sore leg. If it was a running injury I might have felt better about it.

The past few weeks I often felt like this...

But I am running every day again and even though it is very short runs it does help to keep the frustration levels down. I am busy with a very slow buildup to what will be hopefully pretty normal training by April.

How bad was my leg? Think multiple stress fractures in the femur. That's how bad it felt at some point. Now it is a bit stiff and sore while I run but I don't feel any pain or discomfort through the days or nights anymore. Thinking about it like this I know there is progress and I am on my way to full recovery.

I still think I hurt my leg while gardening on tired legs after the 48 hour race in December. This is the only logical explanation I have so I will go with that.

For now I am back to running 6 times per week...short, but that is much better than no running at all.
At least I am a little less frustrated...

Stay strong my friends!

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Throwback Thursday - A Tribute to the Badges

Back in the day, I'm talking the 1980's here, we received a badge when we completed a race...not a medal. I have many badges. We used to fill our tracksuits and towels and blankets with our badges.

I have more medals than badges now, but I must admit...I miss the days of the badges,...

Those were good days!

Happy running everyone!

Monday, February 23, 2015

A Sore Leg

Yep, as the title suggests, I have a sore leg. A sore upper left leg. It is not a running injury but an injury from gardening. At least I think it's from gardening.

It is a weird one in the sense that it does not stay in one place. It literally moves around! It will be on the inside and then at some point suddenly on the outside. Then right at the top and then suddenly just above the knee...

It is definitely not specific to a particular muscle. I am actually worried that it might be the femur bone itself. I've asked all the powers that be and the first step is rest for a week to see if there is any improvement. I am in the middle of that week now and I am getting worried. I can still feel it as I did on day one.

All in all very annoying indeed! But I will persevere and get it sorted out. That's all I can do. Hopefully rest can do what is needed.

In the mean time,..run strong my friends!

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Throwback Thursday - Tribute to Dad Edition

My wonderful father turned 85 years old yesterday. As you know by now, he is my greatest running inspiration.

My throwback Thursday goes to 1999 when I ran a race with him for the last time. We were joined by my brother and his wife.

Linda, André, Dad and me.

Dam with hippos in the background.

Happy 85th Dad! What did he do for his Birthday? "I took the day off work and also the day after that." Bet you not many can say that on their 85th birthdays...