On Saturday it was the Rafi’s Friendly City Marathon and it was my first big race for the year. After the marathon in December I was not holding out much hope for it…
I trained a tiny bit more this time with a couple of runs around the 30km mark, but I also realised that before my last one I did everything wrong so this time I made sure my race prep was better. I ate properly the entire week leading up to it and especially the day before. For me this means staying off the grains, eating more fats and making sure I get loads of green veggies in. I also made sure that I was off my feet for most of Friday.
My other plans was to implement a run/walk strategy right from the start. They had a water point every 3 km and I planned to walk every single one of them, right from the third kilometer, whether I felt I need to or not. I also planned on walking the two hills. My plan in the December marathon was the total opposite. I planned on running until 21km and then seeing what happened.
So, how did it go? ABSOLUTELY FANTASTIC!
I could not have asked for a better marathon. Not only did I get a personal best of over 21 minutes, I got a better seeding for Comrades (so now my sister and I are in the same batch) and better that all of that I loved every minute of it. There was not a minute in the race where I felt like it was too far or I was aching. There were a few points where I was counting down till the next water point so I could walk, but they seemed to come pretty quickly.
Right from the start I walked every water point. It was so tempting to run the first few, especially the 3km one as I felt fine but I stuck to my plan. The first time I walked not at a water point was on the first hill and that was in the last 10 km. I had planned on walking that anyway. I think my last 5 kilometers were about the quickest of the entire race. I cannot believe the difference from the marathon 2 months ago! It just shows what a difference a clear plan and good race prep can do.
I now feel so much more confident for the rest of my goals for this year. My next major one is at the end of the month – the Addo Elephant Trail Run 44km. At least with this, it’s a trail run so I will be taking my camera and appreciating the amazing scenery of the Eastern Cape.
Yes, yes, I know – bad blogger…..
I don’t even know where to start it’s been so long and so much has happened.
I guess the first thing I should say is I LOVE WORKING FROM HOME! It is has now been 3.5 months and it still feels like I am just on a Christmas holiday… Saying that, I have NEVER been as busy (you might have guessed by the lack of blog posts….)
My word for last year was DO and I think I am going to keep it for this year too – the picture that Cat gave me is up on my office wall and I look at it daily.
Besides starting a business I had another goal for last year and that was to run a stand-alone marathon (one not in an Ironman). I did not do that before December, but I am VERY proud to announce that I have however finally done one. I have however decided I am very odd (yes, I know…. ) A stand-alone marathon has scared me. I don’t know why? I know I can do the distance, I’ve done 2 Ironman races and they have a marathon in them, so I am not sure what I was worried about – and then I entered Two Oceans and needed a marathon to qualify. Suddenly a marathon did not scare me anymore. It is just a distance I needed to run to qualify for Two Ocean – which for some reason does not scare me either. Maybe it is just that I really like a challenge. Maybe I just needed a bigger goal? Who knows – all I do know is that I have now run a stand-alone marathon (with very little training) and have qualified for Two Oceans. FUN!
Now the real training begins…..My first Ultra
I cannot believe that we are mid-way through December and I have not even started my Christmas shopping yet…… YIKES!!! My family is easy – we do a Secret Santa and so only have to buy for one person. I happened to get Mr OL, which is a bit of a problem as I now need to get him 2 gifts. We also all generally give my mom something additional as well – but she likes hand made stuff so that’s done. At least Father Christmas is on the ball so Little OL is sorted. My in-laws…. hmmmmm I really need to get to the shops soon.
I have a good excuse for not having gotten to the shops earlier… I have been working hard! So many people have contacted SA Medal Hangers for custom made or personal medal hangers – it has been awesome. I love coming up with the new designs. But because of that , I have decided to create a new blog. This will showcase SA Medal Hangers’ custom-made or personalised medal hangers. We have created so may awesome one off designs and they won’t all get displayed on our website, so to give people some inspiration or ideas when ordering their own medal hanger I thought this might work. What do you think?
So, its been exactly a month since my last day of official employment and BOY OH BOY what a month. I have never been this busy or this excited or this stressed. And I have loved it!
It started with me trying to get ready, not only for the Dryland Traverse but also the Momentum 94.7 Cycle Challenge Expo. The timing was not good as there was no cell phone reception at the De Hoek camp site where the Dryland was based, but thankfully they had set up Wi-Fi, if a bit temperamental at times. I was going to be away for 4 days and then back for only 1 day before leaving for Johannesburg, so I needed to get everything done before I left for the run.
I was also worried about driving from Port Elizabeth to Johannesburg by myself and then concerned about actually driving in Johannesburg. Both of which were fine. It took me about 80km to remember that I LOVE driving on my own. I turned the music up to the max and had a blast. I did get a few odd looks at some of the stop and go’s with my music rocking the Kombi. Not sure if it was the volume or my dodgy taste in music though…..
Thanks to Firefly for the recommendation on a accommodation as it was less than a kilometre from the Coca Cola dome and very easy to find when coming in from the N1. No problems there.
Then the expo – I was not sure how it would go. It was totally foreign territory to me. I did not know how much stock to take, if people would buy or just want info. I just hoped I sold some….. which I did. Not as much as I would have liked but the interest was high and as custom orders are our biggest seller most people wanted info to order later. Which thankfully a lot have done. That has totally exceeded my expectation. In fact I am bouncing around on Cloud 9 at the moment. I know a lot of the medal hangers ordered are for Christmas presents so January will be really quiet, but considering I have only just started I am ecstatic.
Here is a photo of the SA Medal Hangers stand at the expo. What do you think? As it was our first expo, I learnt a lot of stuff. I will do the stand slightly differently next time, I will take less stock but have more staff and hopefully I will be a lot less stressed…….. Our next major expo is at the Cape Argus Cycle Tour in Cape Town in March and I can’t wait.
Then, did anybody spot SA Medal Hangers in a few of the magazines…… We got write ups in the Runner’s World and the RIDE SA magazines . I had sent them the info but had no idea they would use it – happiness is
So, what can I say! This has been one heck of a year. My work goal for the year was by the end of 2013 to go half day in formal employment and to try and to have found something else on the side, which hopefully by the end of next year would be enough to take over. Being retrenched kind of kicked that goal out the window, but it was replaced by something so much bigger. My word for the year was DO and I think I have done just that. 2013 has one month left and I am excited for it and then even more excited for 2014!
I need a challenge. I train better when I have a goal and it must be enough of a challenge that I won’t be able to just cruise through it, but not too much of a challenge that it totally scares me off.
So… I have decided on and entered Two Oceans Ultra marathon in 2014 – 56km! Scary yes, but very exciting. My goal for this year was to run a marathon – now it is more than just a goal, I actually have to do it to qualify for the Ultra. There is a local one in December that I plan on doing.
To say I am excited is a bit of an understatement. Initially I had not planned on doing it as I thought I might take my medal hangers to the expo – but the prices of the stands where published and they don’t have any of the smaller options – so I am running.
Yay for a Birthday weekend in Cape Town.
I know I have said this before, but I have been blown away by the support I have been receiving for SA Medal Hangers – and I know it seems weird to say, but I am stupid proud of them. I have one up on my wall and I stare at it all the time. I am not sure which I am more proud off, the medals that hang from it or the actually hanger.
I also know it is early days, I know I still have far to go and I know that having a full time job has been a huge cushion for me in starting this business, but I am really proud of myself for taking what could have been a blow and trying to make it a positive.
Before starting this I did keep most of my medals, but they were hanging on a broken clothes hanger in the back bedroom cupboard. I would not look at them, but just add another medal as I got it. It was actually Mr OL’s suggestion that we display them but could not really think of a solution and then I found this idea.
Now that the medals are up and I can see them I realise just how far I have come. I started running again in 2005 and did my first Ironman in 2007. In the past 8 years running and triathlon have become a huge part of my life and I love it!
I know that not everybody wants to display their medals, and a lot of people don’t even take them at races, but since putting them up on the wall I have started seeing them not just as the metal and ribbon, but as something more than that! As an achievement – and something I should be very proud off.
To give somebody else the opportunity to feel that sense of pride and achievement I have decided to run a giveaway on SA Medal Hangers’ Facebook page. The details are all there, so please go and have a look. You could win a 65cm triple bar medal hanger of your choice! (Sorry – Open to South African Residents only). CLICK HERE for details.
On Sunday there were various Rhino Runs held around the country and there were 2 to choose from in our area. One at Kenton-on-Sea and the other at Crossways Village near Van Standens. I did that one. It was a lot closer to town, and I love that area.
(Its an annual event – so next year why not find one in your area.
As you know, I have not been running much lately, my furthest run as been 11km so I was not really sure what distance I should enter. There was a 6km, a 12 km and a 20km. As I have the Dryland coming up in November and I really need to get some distance in I chose the 20km. Yikes!!! But it was fine. Or at least it was fun up until my Garmin said I had already done 20km then my mind said I needed to stop. Those last 1.8km were tough!!!
All in all though it was a stunning race – tough but stunning. You know you are not out for a walk in the park when at the race briefing they say “and then you run around and up the back, over the top then down the front of Lady’s Slipper Mountain to the finish”! When “hilly course” and “over the mountain” are mentioned in the same race briefing you know you are in for some fun!!!
You see the “hill” behind me…. Yip, I had just run over it! (this was also at the 20km and the legs fell off in about 5 steps from here……) EDIT: I think this might be the first photo of me EVER where both feet are off the ground at the same time and I actually look like I am doing something resembling running!
I managed it in just under 3 hours and was extremely happy with that time (I even stopped and took a couple of photos). Even if I had been training it is pretty much what I would have expected. In fact it is a lot better than some of my runs of a similar distance. I am now very excited for the Dryland – I know I need to work on hills a bit more but my foot gave me no hassles when I was running and I am loving my new trail shoes – (Innov8)
I have had this blog for 5 years – wow time has flown. Before I started here I had an iBlog account for a short while as well.
Over the years my blog has changed quite bit. It has gone from being mostly about Ironman training to a real mix up of stuff, Ordinary Life stuff! I have had a baby, I have started baking and icing cookies, I have shown you all some of my paintings and sketches, I have started a new business – SA Medal Hangers. And very importantly I have made some great friends!
Thank you all so much for joining me on this journey, I am thoroughly enjoying it!
Here is the link to my first post – published on the 1st September 2008
I don’t know how wise it was but I was going stir crazy not running, my foot is just getting more and more painful and I figured “what the hell” Resting it does not seem to be working anyway, it’s been 12 weeks of almost no running.
I might have slightly over done it by doing two races but still….
On the Saturday I did the Hobie Beach Park Run. They are awesome and what a fantastic idea! 5 km held in a park or open area, you register once, get a bar code then just arrive. No matter where you are in South Africa you can just rock up with your bar-code at the local one. If you are a Discovery member you get 500 points and as long as you have registered that on the system then the points are automatically updated. Each race is timed and so you can gauge your progress…. And best of all the FREE! They are very popular. Here is the link to the Park Run SA!
On Sunday I did a trail run. 11km which I said I would walk but once out there I ran quite a bit of it anyway. Well the parts that were not up a steep hill, or down a steep hill, or where the view was stunning, or where it was too rocky (ok, there was a lot of walking) At one stage I had to give myself a bit of pep talk about all the photo taking. I knew it was bad when I thought about taking photos of the fynbos….
But OH MY GOODNESS!!!!!!! The views were STUNNING (yes all the caps are necessary). I only had my phone with me but even with that I got some decent photos – more to do with the scenery than my photography skills.
I can’t believe that an area like this is so close to PE. I absolutely love mountains (and the sea, but this post is about mountains)
And the good news is that I don’t think I killed my foot – it is no worse today than it was on Friday. Yippee – I am going to start training again. I have 2 months left before the Fairview Dryland Traverse! I will worry more about it after that.
And just incase you haven’t figured it out it – I was the girl there promoting her stainless steel medal hangers……. SA Medal Hangers
I start a post in my mind and then stop. Too much information, too boring, said already or whatever the reason the thought gets ditched.
So, I am writing this one, one not thought out ahead of time. I have nothing much to say but so what…. Here is a basic update of what is happening in my Ordinary Life.
I am still doing the Art Techniques course through Coursera.org and loving it. I don’t feel that I always have enough time to do the art project but you only are required to do 2 to pass and I have already done two, so am not too concerned if I miss a week here or there. I am just completing all the theory quizzes and that will be enough. Here is a picture I drew (the London taxi) for one of the assignments, the topic was “Mail Art”
I am driving Mr OL batty with thoughts of trying to start (another) business. I constantly have ideas in my head but generally they don’t get much further than the planning stages
I bought another property – think I already mentioned this – and have since found out that the tenants that I was led to believe were “good” have not paid rent in 5 months. I am hoping that the current owner gets rid of them before I take over. I am sure that it is a breach of contract or something if he said that they were paying when I signed for it but they were not??? Any ideas?
My foot is …. I am actually not sure. All I do know is that I still can’t run. I am going to take 6 weeks off and then hope for the best. We do know that there is no muscle damage, no tendonitis, no ligament damage and nothing else that can be seen in x-rays or an ultra-sound. These however do not rule out a stress fracture. In the meantime I am going to go for Gait Analysis because something I am doing has caused this. I am also going for massages (yay) and to the chiropractor who is doing dry needling as my muscles in my legs are in knots. I am hoping that this all makes me stronger. I am also trying to stretch in. I really need to get in the pool and on my bicycle…..
I am having a serious case of “mommy guilt” at the moment. Next weekend I was due to go to the Knysna Oyster Festival to run the HoutKapper Trail… Mr and Little OL were going to stay behind in PE. Now obviously the running is out – however I have already sorted out my accommodation….. So……. A weekend away sans husband and kiddy???? I am going to go but why do I feel so guilty about going away by myself for the weekend? My mom, brother, sister and a multitude of my friends are all going, Mr OL does not want to go….urgh! Would you feel guilty?
Wow, for a post that I did not think about I sure had a lot to write.
Oh, yes – MR OL surprised me with an Asus Transformer – well, he actually surprised me by asking if I would like an iPad Mini – I said no. After he got over the initial shock I explained why. So he helped me get the Transformer instead. I LOVE IT!