Now what!?

It has been 5 tough weeks of getting up very early to get in a cycle and stay up to speed with the Virgin Active Epic Battle challenges. Seeing that I am not really partaking in any significant event other than the 109km Cape Town

This initiative by Virgin Active has been brilliant. When is the next one?

This initiative by Virgin Active has been brilliant. When is the next one?

Cycle Tour and 55km Cape Town Cycle Tour MTB, I grabbed the opportunity to follow some specific riding goals when Virgin Active announced their Cape Epic Strava / API based challenges and to stand a chance to win a 2018 Absa Cape Epic entry.

Or maybe I just missed coach Alasdair Garnett from The Practice telling me what to do each day in the lead up to the 2016 Absa Cape Epic. Perhaps I missed the suffering or got tired of aimlessly wondering / riding through the streets and trails of the Western Cape. Anyway, I think the concept is brilliant and it certainly helped me to get focused and sort of fitting into my clothes again. (PS: some feedback of the ‘fight’ with the Fashion Police at work – they are apparently slowly but surely getting my dress code

Fortunate to have the Table Mountain Trails & Greenbelt open for us for riding in Cape Town and played a part in getting that altitude required in the challenge

Fortunate to have the Table Mountain Trails & Greenbelt open for us for riding in Cape Town and played a part in getting that altitude required in the challenge

up to their standards).

 

Over the 5-week period there was a speed, 100km minimum, once off elevation, total distance and total altitude ride with different criteria in each to achieve to qualify for the draw of the 2018 Absa Cape Epic

Well done Dom. Conquering Chappies from Noordhoek side. Ready for the Cape Town Cycle Tour!

Well done Dom. Conquering Chappies from Noordhoek side. Ready for the Cape Town Cycle Tour!

entry. After 48.7 hours and 919km all these goals were achieved. Now we wait and see.

 

As a general aimless wanderer with most things in my life it great to have ‘someone’ tell me I need to achieve this and that and it just shows that when training it helps to have goals and plans. One is more focused to achieve something, well I am. Tell me what to do and I will go out and do it! (Probably in my own way)

Early morning in Camps Bay meeting Mr. Andrew Norman for what turned out to be an awesome ride in the rain.

Early morning in Camps Bay meeting Mr. Andrew Norman for what turned out to be an awesome ride in the rain.

 

What challenge is next, I’m not sure. This weekend I am doing the mountain bike leg of the Fedhealth XTERRA Grabouw Lite as part of the Drug Free Sport / I Play Fair team of South African Institute of Drug Free Sport CEO, Khalid Galant and prominent Drive Time KFM Radio Presenter Rob Vember. So, no pressure in me performing. Just kidding, we are out and out going to have some fun and create awareness for Drug Free Sport. Let see how my 14km MTB Sprint goes. Good luck Khalid with the swim and Rob with the run (hopefully you don’t wait too long for me). Thanks Nikki Ferreira for putting this all-in place, as they say: Just Add Milk (Let’s see that Social Media happening)

 

The Trainee - There will be no wind on the 12th of March and you will complete the Cape Town Cycle Tour Dominique

The Trainee – There will be no wind on the 12th of March and you will complete the Cape Town Cycle Tour Dominique

Now back to ‘student’ Dominique de Lauwere and her journey to her 1st Cape Town Cycle Tour. Over the last few weeks I took Dom on parts of the route for her to experience the different climbs and descents to realise that she can ride it. Riding the Cycle Tour does not have to be a sprint and one should manage your expectations and the goal of the 1st one is to finish and not worry about time, especially if training time has been limited and work interfered with the training program.

I’m sure Dom will be fine a she has shown the determination and will

The Riding Group, coach, trainee and Nairo Quintana (what are hills Jacky McClean?)

The Riding Group, coach, trainee and Nairo Quintana (what are hills Jacky McClean?)

to do it, whilst also enjoying the cycling (And we miss our other riding partner – you know who you are Jacky M). One day of grit for 109km and getting as much time as possible on the bike in the next two weeks before the ride on the 12th, whilst also not overdoing it with too much exertion of too long and tough rides. Now Dom has been keen for training rides no matter how hard the wind is blowing and or the daunting tasks of going up Chappies and Suikerbossie climbs for the first time. I believe this will and determination to do it will stand you in good stead Dom and get you to the finish line. (If not I will retire as a cycling adviser and go back to talking about front row play in rugby)

 

In a previous life at work we discussed targets and goals and Mr. Shane Colloty was always adamant that a target is something one hits and a goal is something you want to achieve.

The Virgin Active Challenge is finished, so now what!? What is next? (No Thinus! I am not doing a triathlon). The search is on for the next set of goals….

I rode the Fairtree Simonsberg Contour MTB stage race recently and realised that every extra kg on the bike makes a difference - no more Pistachio ice cream

I rode the Fairtree Simonsberg Contour MTB stage race recently and realised that every extra kg on the bike makes a difference – no more Pistachio ice cream

Just thought I'd share and early morning sunrise on my way to work

View 1: Just thought I’d share and early morning sunrise on my way to work

View 2: Always great scenery riding over Chapmans Peak, especially on a beautiful that like this one was

View 2: Always great scenery riding over Chapmans Peak, especially on a beautiful that like this one was

View 3: The view from behind of the R304 outside Stellenbosch

View 3: The view from behind of the R304 outside Stellenbosch

The facial expression says it all with nearly 1600m of climbing on the 55km route of which most was single track at the Simonsberg Contour Ride - eina!

The facial expression says it all with nearly 1600m of climbing on the 55km route of which most was single track at the Simonsberg Contour Ride – eina!

Sexy legs. Especially the one with...with the Wines2Whales socks on

Sexy legs. Especially the one with…with the Wines2Whales socks on

Miyagi Son …

“Better learn balance. Balance is key. Balance good, karate good. Everything good. Balance bad, better pack up, go

Mr Miyagi or Homer Simpson's Life Philosophy or both?

Mr Miyagi or Homer Simpson’s

home. Understand?”  – Mr. Miyagi

 

Quote significance: Balance is a double meaning word, you need balance to stand up and not fall, but you need balance in your life areas, or else your life will become unstable.

 

As some loyal readers (the one or two of you out there) might have noticed that I have not posted anything on this blog in quite a while. I have no excuse other than laziness in creativity and exercise. I am still trying to find that one new event to train towards but also wants to add some balance to my bachelor life in doing more ‘other’ stuff and not just train. To find the balance, that is the question.

Festive Season. Food. Fermented Beverages. Friends. Fun. Fatter. (Good fun at the girls'"book club"year end function with Matt,Toby, Rob and Ev

Festive Season. Food. Fermented Beverages. Friends. Fun. Fatter. (Good fun at the girls'”book club”year end function with Matt,Toby, Rob and Ev

Now since 2016 I have managed to let my eyes wonder over a few pieces of food and to be honest my secret ability of extracting nutrients, specifically fat, from food by just look at it is still very much active. I can either blame this super power of mine for the few extra kilograms I collected since last year this time or if I must it could have been my love of craft beer and good food over the festive season. But then I would have to blame my friends and I can’t do that.

Those beers again. Will miss my mate Rob on our weekend MTB rides and that compulsory beer stop. Good luck with the new venture Kuc!

Those beers again. Will miss my mate Rob on our weekend MTB rides and that compulsory beer stop. Good luck with the new venture Kuc!

It is scary how easy one can fall back into old habits in not watching and controlling what one eats. “These few beers won’t make a difference. I really feel like a chocolate. It is holidays after all, go for it. This is yummy, let’s have some more.” You get the picture. On the positive side, I have kept myself active and fitness is not a problem – only gravity…

 

My friend and weekly MTB riding partner Rob has taken up a huge

Proof that I did get out a rode during the holidays. Here with the Norman's, Trystan, Andrew and Rob Kucera

Proof that I did get out a rode during the holidays. Here with the Norman’s, Trystan, Andrew and Rob Kucera

working opportunity in Uganda and I would like to wish him and his family all the best with this new venture with the Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group. I am sure it would be a huge success Rob and we will hopefully come visit Kampala soon to try out the local beer and mountain bike trails (oh and Tiger fishing).

 

That all serious training ride post work with Dom and Jacky. Was super cool girls. Keep on riding

That all serious training ride post work with Dom and Jacky. Was super cool girls. Keep on riding

Now I am no expert in the ways of cycling and or exercise, but as regular readers and followers of my journey (the 2 of you) know is that I have been through a lot in my cycling and fitness adventure so I might have picked up some hints and tips along the way. This brings me to a new chapter in my journey, that as advise giver and helper (I would not say mentor) in the girls at the office’s training program towards riding the Cape Town Cycle Tour. It has been super fantastic to assist and give advice where I can to Dominique de Lauwere who is new to our cycling sport but very enthusiastic. It is super to depart

Spot the 1st timer on top of Chappies. Well done Dom and thanks for joining us on the ride Mr. Norman

Spot the 1st timer on top of Chappies. Well done Dom and thanks for joining us on the ride Mr. Norman

with the little knowledge I have, especially to someone appreciative and eager to learn and do well, working towards that goal of finishing the Cape Town Cycle Tour with training partner and colleague Jacky McClean, all part of our little office training group.  Keep going Dom and Jax – you will do great. Put in the time in the saddle now and you will be more than fine come Cape Town Cycle Tour time.

 

Now besides all that, training wise, and the return to early morning alarms to go outside and burn fat there is also still the unresolved issues with the in-office Fashion Police. It has been tough to keep up with what is acceptable and not acceptable apparel to clothe myself in. Contributing factors being the fluctuating body measurements due the

Apparently these #shoesmustfall Very scared that the Fashion Police gets a hold of my credit card

Apparently these #shoesmustfall Very scared that the Fashion Police gets a hold of my credit card

festive season activities and other external factors like good food and craft beer, has made it difficult to live up to the standards set by the Fashion Police, aka Sarah Marx and Lauren de Wet. I do feel the pressure, and acceptance within the social group and volatile office ecosystem, so a shopping spree is inevitable…

 

That being it, really looking forward to the next few weeks of training and riding my bike with Dom, Jacky and whomever joins us in the lead up to the Cape Town Cycle Tour. That whole balance thing of training to keep in shape and in the wardrobe whilst living live and eating healthy is quite a challenge…and to part with knowledge is stressful and dangerous, especially if you might not know much…

Kucera, looking forward to our next ride at the Tygerberg MTB Trails. In the mean time have a blast in Kampala with the new Radison Blu in Kampala, Uganda

Kucera, looking forward to our next ride at the Tygerberg MTB Trails. In the mean time have a blast in Kampala with the new Radison Blu in Kampala, Uganda

Christmas gift - these amazing rh+ gloves. Love them

Christmas gift – these amazing rh+ gloves. Love them

After that insane fall - great to have conquered the Cobra Kuc. #MTBFun

After that insane fall – great to have conquered the Cobra Kuc. #MTBFun

Craft Beer, so good! If only it was carb free ;)

Craft Beer, so good! If only it was carb free 😉

The View.

The View.

A Grande Cappuccino to start a Monday post Fedhealth XTERRA Buffelspoort

A Grande Cappuccino to start a Monday post one of our events, Fedhealth XTERRA Buffelspoort

When you climb up Tokai Mountain after a 116km road ride the previous day - it slightly hurts

When you climb up Tokai Mountain after a 116km road ride the previous day – it slightly hurts

Dominique de Lauwere - Keep on training/riding and you will have a super Cape Town Cycle Tour. #MustHaveFun

Dominique de Lauwere conquering Chapmans Peak – Keep on training/riding and you will have a super Cape Town Cycle Tour. #MustHaveFun

On the other side

The Start of the FNB Wines2Whales at Lourensford Wine Estate (Very Early Morning)

The Start of the FNB Wines2Whales at Lourensford Wine Estate (Very Early Morning)

Now for last 5 years I have been riding the FNB Wines2Whales (Wines with a ‘S’ Ryan O’Connor 🙂 ). This year would be different as I recently left the world of the bicycle trade to step into the eventing side of it. So, what does that mean – If you work at the event, you can’t ride the event. Result – a serious case of FOMO, especially if you meet up with all the familiar faces.

Got some time out on the route to take photos and support some mates (Ashleigh Haigh-Smith and Doug Bird) Well ridden gents

Got some time out on the route to take photos and support some mates (Ashleigh Haigh-Smith and Doug Bird) Well ridden gents

 

The experience has been surreal as one gets exposed to what transpires behind the scenes of eventing and what all needs to happen to deliver the amazing experience to the FNB Wines2Whales riders. Obviously, it was my first event I worked at and there were a few curveballs thrown my / our way. Some bigger than others and one soon learns how to cope with what needs to be done to deliver the result as a team with the common goal of delivering a world class event.

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10 days became a very long time at the end but as a matter of fact time went by relatively quickly as there are always something to be done or people to interact with. Early mornings and late evenings and getting to know your colleagues better over a glass of ‘water’. I was the newbie, only with Stillwater Sports for a couple of months and still having to fit into the dynamics of it all.

 

Arriving at the event prior I knew I would be camping and not too sure what to expect I was pleasantly surprised as it looked more like glamping than camping. The tent only saw me absolutely when it had to for the few hours of sleep every night. To protect the (not so) innocent I won’t mention war stories (nothing untoward) of entertaining and socialising at events. Delivering professional work is what it is all about and the bigger picture of delivering a quality event.

Super excited when your friends come visit and some are riding only for them to be very inconsiderate by drinking beer whilst all you can enjoy is a cappuccino

Super excited when your friends come visit and some are riding only for them to be very inconsiderate by drinking beer whilst all you can enjoy is a cappuccino

 

As crew, we did have some fun to keep our sanity through the stressful days of the event, one must make it fun when spending 10 days with colleagues away from home. Hopefully the “Fashion Police” know me a little better now and have fewer questions or more, who knows. We also converted some of our colleagues to be in love with the sport of mountain biking. I hope they continue riding.

Back to the training part of my blog – there was no training at all! Over the 10 days my clothes have shrunk a little again and now it is time to get back into action and start training again otherwise I might just exceed my bike’s weight limit. Yes! The food of Food Lovers market at the event was just that good. I tried to dish up less but somehow your plate just gets so full.

We took some time out from the race to visit the Bot Rive crèches with Heidi from FNB. You can make a difference by supporting us

We took some time out from the race to visit the Bot River crèches with Heidi from FNB. You can make a difference by supporting us

It has been a great and tiring experience and I hope to see some of you next year riding the 9th edition of the FNB Wines2Whales. Maybe I will be lucky enough to someone get to ride one of the events…

Sarah and Agné about to test those Levo's (Nothing is said about any falls by anyone during these rides;) )

Sarah and Agné about to test those Levo’s (Nothing is said about any falls by anyone during these rides;) )

A new mountain biker - Dominique - the smile says it all

A new mountain biker – Dominique – the smile says it all

Spending time with Phiindi at registration whilst selling those sought after W2W bags

Spending time with Phiindi at registration whilst selling those sought after W2W bags

Saw about 10 of these early mornings in a row. Get up!

Saw about 10 of these early mornings in a row. Get up!

I have no idea where some of this artwork came from

I have no idea where some of this artwork came from

Ssshhh, don't tell the podium girl I took a photo. I might get smacked

Ssshhh, don’t tell the podium girl I took a photo. I might get smacked

Compulsory event selfie. This is my happy face :)

Compulsory event selfie. This is my happy face 🙂

We made some time to get George Marx on a bike, even if it was with pedal assist

We made some time to get George Marx on a bike, even if it was with pedal assist (Specialized Levo)

Ride2Nowhere Going Somewhere

Yet another smile sneaking through...

Yet another smile sneaking through…

It’s all the name, but be sure the Ride2Nowhere in McGregor is going nowhere (as in staying put) it is going from strength to strength and will surely be embedded into my riding calendar for the years to come. As riders we don’t always fully understand the planning, effort and hard work going into a multi-stage MTB event and from what was delivered at the 2016 Ride2Nowhere (Presented by WeChat) was world class. Huge respect and congratulations to Eulogy van Dyk and Con Viljoen for putting together a very professional experience whilst still keeping the community essence and relaxed vibe of the Ride2Nowhere in tacked. I will be there in 2017 and so will many of my friends. (This is probably one of the greatest little hidden gem of a MTB event currently in South Africa…shhhh.)

#MTBFun

#MTBFun

From arrival registration worked seamlessly and the tranquil

Team Manager Thinus showing off his Selfie skills in getting his athletes into shot and the Ride2Nowhere gantry after some photographic guidance on branding shots

Team Manager Thinus showing off his Selfie skills in getting his athletes into shot and the Ride2Nowhere gantry after some photographic guidance on branding shots

atmosphere created underneath the Bedouin tent just enticed everyone to sit down, chill and socialise with other like-minded people whilst enjoying a bottle of two of Lord’s winery’s best. With WeChat as presenting sponsor all riders that used their WeChat Wallet to enter could some cash back to spend and all the community suppliers for the race jumped on board with a QR code that made payment so much simpler (And you even got money back on your purchase).

 

This man was in Olympic form and rode strongly. Was great fun to share the trails with you RK

This man was in Olympic form and rode strongly. Was great fun to share the trails with you RK

The farmers and Con have been really working hard to establish some awesome trails to ride and the addition of new trails and single track did not disappoint. Although I wasn’t feeling the greatest during the event with some sort of stomach ailment I came of the bike on Sunday with a huge smile on my face. I really enjoyed the ride as we were taken through the beautiful landscape and some ‘nasty’ climbs from previous years taken out and replace by some serene new routes. Stunning.  Well done Con on putting together a race that is tough but fair and so beautiful to ride. Day 1 welcomes you to the event and takes

Another event done with no issues on my Mitas Tyres. Love this rubber ;)

Another event done with no issues on my Mitas Tyres. Love this rubber 😉 #Textra

you high up into mountains, but for every climb you are rewarded with super downhill trails and makes the toil of the first half of the race worth it. Day 2 takes you through the Vrolijkheid Nature Reserve and onto trails where you sometimes find yourself all alone out in nature. Beautiful. I have raved about day 3 already. Every mountain biker should be out to go and enjoy the trails McGregor has to offer and there will be no better way than to experience it through the Ride2Nowhere in 2017 (8-10 Sept).

 

I don’t need to give a race report. We rode (Rob Kucera) and myself through the beautiful landscape and time was not an issue, it was all about the challenge and having fun on the mountain bike with your friend(s). All I can say is that I haven’t had so much fun on the bike in quite a while, even taking a dive into a thorn bush on the last day could not hamper the excitement. And although my supposed to riding partner (Thinus Crafford) could not ride because of a recent bout of Swine Flu and had to turn into Team Manager for myself and Rob the weekend and riding was unforgettable. Thanks for the support TC. It was nice to catch up with you, Lolla and Thiaan (and Gerra and Sara).

 

The Ride2Nowhere, a ride for family and friends to enjoy a weekend away with stunning riding routes, food (amazing as prepared by the women of the Dutch Reform Church), vibe and wine. Get all your friends now to commit to 2017 and enjoy a weekend away that you won’t forget. If they don’t mountain bike they can participate in the trail run or just experience what McGregor region has to offer.

Again, well done Eulogy van Dyk and Con Viljoen on putting together and MTB experience that ranks up with the best.

 

See you there in 2017!

The unique lead-out vehicle through the neutral zone adds to the character of the race

The unique lead-out vehicle through the neutral zone adds to the character of the race

The Water points by Robertson Pick 'n Pay were phenomenal. Even had enough Jelly Babies for Andrew Norman

The Water points by Robertson Pick ‘n Pay were phenomenal. Even had enough Jelly Babies for Andrew Norman

Eish! Superb routes and great race briefing by Con Viljoen

Eish! Superb routes and great race briefing by Con Viljoen

As always Lord's Winery came to the party through this fantastic gesture for the finishers as well as the obvious supply of wine throughout the event. Paid for with ease through SnapScan and your WeChat Wallet

As always Lord’s Winery came to the party through this fantastic gesture for the finishers as well as the obvious supply of wine throughout the event. Paid for with ease through SnapScan and your WeChat Wallet

One of the reasons to be out on the trails of Ride2Nowhere

One of the reasons to be out on the trails of Ride2Nowhere

Always a vibe beneath the Bedouin where everything happens

Always a vibe beneath the Bedouin where everything happens

WeChat created an academy for local riders and these young men took on the challenge of the short route. Keep on cycling gents

WeChat created an academy for local riders and these young men took on the challenge of the short route. Keep on cycling gents

Leading the bunch - lol. I'll be in McGregor in 2017 from the 8th to the 10th of September if anyone will be looking for me or want to setup a meeting

Leading the bunch – lol. I’ll be in McGregor in 2017 from the 8th to the 10th of September if anyone will be looking for me or want to setup a meeting

I Blame My Friends

After struggling through the tough Cape winter months, where the will to get out of bed for training was not as I wanted it to be, or as a dedicated athlete’s commitment should have been. Thus the fitness levels are not where it should be. Before you start lashing out at me for letting my pristine shape and fitness levels slide, I did not do nothing (is that a double negative?). I tried to at least ride once every weekend and do a spin class and WattBike session during the weeks (More one than both – guilty). The real reason I the shape of my body might have shifted during these dark months are my friends.

IMG_9136

Waterfall on the side of Table Mountain.

Why do they entertain and cook so well? Surely they should know that I am too well-mannered and love good food and cold beverages too much to decline an offer or an invitation. From Pulled Pork Burgers to Steak sandwiches, Leg of Lamb and the good traditional braai (barbeque) all served with either excellent South African Red Wine or an ice cold (Lite) ale even to odd good whiskey or brandy in celebration. Enough said! Friends should know not to exploit your weaknesses as my clothes now fit slightly tighter than in March 2016. But life is all about balance and going on this food drive surely balance the ‘’starvation” period prior the Cape Epic out. To my friends, you may continue with this as I know that I’ll have a proper meal at least whenever we have these social gatherings.

IMG_9222

Early morning ride out Meerendal side on the Tygerberg Mountain Bike Trails

Enough of this darkness as the Southern Hemisphere Spring is in the air and it is already evident my commitment and will to train. Only downside with having more daylight to ride after work through the Green Belt in Constantia is to now having to dodge the dog owners walking their dogs and now and again choose the safety first option as my friends of the canine nature turn to chasing mobile humans of a peddling nature. But for now I’ll have to risk injury and tetanus as the Ride2Nowhere 3 day MTB race is next week and last minute training dot com is the order of the day.

 

It has not all been that bad training wise as for my commitment over the weekends I at least have some great photos (in my opinion) to show for it (posted in this post). Even managed to hike up Lion’s Head with Willie and Belia. See diversifying my skills and training routine! So whilst I blame my friends for the unnecessary gain in body mass with the temptations they brought into my life, I can’t really blame them for my lackluster effort in full on commitment in training.

 

With Spring comes new challenges in the form of a new job, but perhaps more of this in the next edition. For now, it is time to bring on the next adventure as the winter hibernation is over!

A Rap Over The Knuckles

Yes I am guilty, guilty of many various things, one being not regularly updated this blog and the other not training as disciplined as I should be. (If you were a cannibal and on the Banting diet (Low Carbs, High Fat) my body currently have the fat required for fitting into the dietary requirements). When in primary school (in the previous millennium) we had a maths teacher and as they tended to do is try and teach their pupils the multiply tables. We got tested weekly and for every mistake you got rapped over the knuckles (now fortunately I was great at maths and rarely had to feel this pain – yes I am boasting – but it was some way of motivating us pupils to study and learn what was required, but enough said of that method of teaching where mistakes was punished with pain.

I went out riding this last Saturday and my research has confirmed that the current Table Mountain habitual conditions were conducive to the successful relocation of Polar Ice Bears

I went out riding this last Saturday and my research has confirmed that the current Table Mountain habitual conditions were conducive to the successful relocation of Polar Ice Bears #BlockHouse

Anyway I had a real deep look at myself as the pants slowly started to fit a bit tighter and after reasoning with myself concluded that it was improbable that they (the pants) would be shrinking and thus only reason was that my body mass must be increasing. Queue the guilt and commitment to settle in to force oneself to face the brutal cold and darkness of Cape Town’s winter to get up early and start training. Okay I’ll confess, on 2 week days I’m still heading indoors to Virgin Active to punish myself on the WattBike. It seems I did not have enough of that torture in the build up to the Absa Cape Epic. (They are forcing me to do 2 sessions on the WattBike after for some unknown reason they cancelled our 6am Spinning Class – yes I am moaning)

 

I am riding the Ride2Nowhere (Presented by WeChat) in McGregor in September and the aim during this current dark and cold period is to maintain the fitness levels post the awesome summer riding days to be in shape for this amazing event. Fortunately Coach Alasdair Garnett is always helpful with advice and thus the two high intensity sessions (that’s why I miss the Spin Class) in the week, finished off with riding over the weekend and the fitness levels should be able to be maintained. Well I hope so! Anyway watching the diet when it is cold and dark also presents a challenge and let’s not talk about comfort food and the mental challenges to try and not do that impulse purchase. Be strong (Not very successful at being strong as it is impossible to walk past Biltong and not buy some, it is just too tempting).

 

It is the 5th year of the Ride2Nowhere and it will be the 5th year I will be riding it and still remains one of my

Sunday was road bike day and to be all by myself on top of Chapman's Peak was surreal. (Polar Bears could relocate there as well)

Sunday was road bike day and to be all by myself on top of Chapman’s Peak was surreal. (Polar Bears could relocate there as well)

favourite events of the year and I don’t want to be stone dead last like in year 1, thus the training. What Eulogy van Dyk and Con Viljoen has achieved with the event is fantastic. To have seen it grow so much, whilst still keeping that friendly, relaxed  and community feel is just great. Everyone I know always enjoys this ride and the whole event and the warm, friendly and festive atmosphere of McGregor. If you are looking for an event to do in September, to shake off that winter legs, enter now rap yourselves over the knuckles to get out there and training to be ready to enjoy the tranquillity of McGregor and the beautiful scenery in the flowering season of the Karoo. And what is extra super cool is that you get a R1000 back in your Wallet if you enter through WeChat!

 

Here’s to taking my body features of the Banting Dietary list with loads of training. #NoMoreFat

PS: There are super awesome wines in the McGregor area. #JustSaying Bring all your friends!

Some views one gets whilst facing the cold but actually still riding your bike. Check out the awesome Mitas Tyres

Some views one gets whilst facing the cold but actually still riding your bike. Check out the awesome Mitas Tyres

That ONE Run!

Now there is a legend of Fernando the Goat keeper and that ONE goat, but perhaps this is not the platform to relay this story. Let’s just say me having done this ONE run does NOT make me a runner.

Evidence that I actually ran. I was just to cheap skate to pay the R72 to buy the photo :) Massive billboard on my chest for the Westin

Evidence that I actually ran. I was just to cheap skate to pay the R72 to buy the photo (www.jetlineactionphoto.com) 🙂 Massive billboard on my chest for the Westin

When I first decided to enter the FNB Cape Town 12 OneRun way back in February during my Absa Cape Epic training I was under the illusion that I would actually be running (if you can call what I do running) more and be in the ‘running’ shape to tackle the 12km with ease. But post Epic, as regular readers would know I had weekend after weekend of social commitments with some MTB stage races thrown in in-between. I know it has been a couple of weeks since the last time I blogged but it took that long for me to psychologically and mentally recoup after actually having completed the 12km run of which I thought I won’t be able to and be in much more pain that I actually was. The last time I ran was on the 12th of April for a full 4.1km, I was not prepared for this run.

 

Now the Saturday before the run myself and Rob Kucera were doing our weekly Mountain Bike Ride (Yes I know!

That ice cold beer after you just put yourself through physical and mental torture of an activity you don't 'really' enjoy - awesome

That ice cold beer after you just put yourself through physical and mental torture of an activity you don’t ‘really’ enjoy – awesome

Crazy you might think to go 50km mountain biking before this run that you have not train for) The peer pressure was on as there was no way I was going to get out of running the next day as Rob and the team from The Westin had already arranged so much for me to join them on the run. And it was not like I did not try not to run as I mentally argued with myself and thinking of reasons why I won’t be able to run the distance and complete the run, thinking of pain in the lower back and that right knee (that might need cartilage clearance soon). I even decided to play chicken with a tree on the Bloemslang downhill track, trying to shoulder it out of the way. Needless to say the tree won and I ended up tuck and sliding onto the ground spread out next to my KTM Scarp. No damaged done, but I did attempt to get out of it by suggesting to Rob that I think I should go for the concussion test (like in rugby) and concerned he asked if I am feeling light headed after the fall and I just had to admit that I’m just looking for ways not to run the 12km’s. So that option did not work either – I was doomed to run.

 

After arriving home from the 50km MTB ride I immediately put on my Skins recovery socks, I would need all the help I could get to be ready for this run. So up the next morning and off to The Westin Cape Town where we all met for breakfast and I immediately felt intimidated by all the skinny running people around me, but everybody was super supportive and encouraging and excitement actually was actually building to experience this run. I knew there was no way I could still get out of it when Michael Meyer from Stillwater Sports and event organiser came to wish me

Breakfast with some of The Westin team members and Super Marilize looking after us. From left: Myself, Anthony van Scalkwyk, Corné Krige, Marilize van Niekerk (soon to be runner) and Llewelyn

Breakfast with some of The Westin team members and Super Marilize looking after us. From left: Myself, Anthony van Scalkwyk, Corné Krige, Marilize van Niekerk (soon to be runner) and Llewelyn

good luck.

 

Off we went to the start and arriving at the venue you get caught into the excitement of seeing the 14,000 odd runners getting ready and filling the chutes. Somehow I got into start chute D which meant I was off at 9am and Rob was starting in batch E 8 minutes after us. I knew he would catch me; it was just a matter of when and where. Excitement was building and the nerves as well, fortunately I bumped into Shaun and Lizelle Peters who did it last year and told me I would be fine, just take it easy and run or walk, the whole experience is a jol and the vibe is amazing. Off we went and former Springbok captain Corné Krige and his mate Llewellyn, also running for the Westin was starting with me and I tried to stay with them for the first 200 meters and realised this will not work (Corné finished in 47mins). My plan upfront was to run 2mins and walk 1min and take it as it comes, but being swamped by all the runners around you pride kicked in and I decided that I could not walk that early, it would just be embarrassing and Rob will catch me earlier.

I decided that I would bite the bullet and only walk after 1km. 1km arrived and as I started walking, the woman

Awesome hotel and awesome people. Thanks for the travel arrangements to the start. Myself, Anthony, Rob (Mr. Olympic) and Andrea Kucera, Corné, Cecil and Llwelyn

Awesome hotel and awesome people. Thanks for the travel arrangements to the start. Myself, Anthony, Rob (Mr. Olympic) and Andrea Kucera, Corné, Cecil and Llwelyn

running next to me did the same. “Are you also doing the 7min run and 1 min walk?” No she was fairly attractive so the only thing I could think of to say that would not be embarrassing was – Yes. We chatting a bit whilst walking and I wished her good luck after the minute we spent together and thinking to myself – this sounds like a good idea. I will try it that way. It was the last time I saw her and after the third 7min run 1min walk I changed the programme to 6min run and 2mins walk – much better.  I stuck to this all the way to the end religiously and it worked perfectly ensuring that I did not put too much strain on my body running and recovering for 2mins to be ready for the next block (Rob caught me just before the 5km and went on to break the 1 hour mark). Only afterwards did I hear that the 7min/1min run is how 2015 female Comrades winner Caroline Wostmann ran.

 

Anyway it was great to see Marilize van Niekerk and the Westin Team shouting and supporting when we came past the hotel and the Bar Ones handed out was a gift of sugar for the last few kilometres (still hurts to say kilometres). Kudos to the Stillwater team for putting together this run as in the 2 years it has been going it has already become and iconic event and a must do in Cape Town, runner or no runner. The vibe is just amazing and the spirit very uplifting of all the runners and supporters along the route, perhaps I will make it TWO next year to break the stigma of that ONE.

Analysis of the torture ;)

Analysis of the torture 😉

Much appreciation to all at the Westin, Rob Marilize, Keaton and the whole team for looking after us runners (I use that word loosely). Live well, eat well, sleep well. A special mention to Andrea Kucera and Cecil Mitchell for being brave in taking on the run after committing during a wine lunch and for completing the run, Kudos and it just shows what can be done once you put your mind to it.

I finished the 12km (well 12.4km) in 1h26m and I could actually walk afterwards and to be honest surprised myself with being able to complete the run the way I did and relatively pain free as well.

See you all next year in the start cute! For now back to the Mountain Bike and forced indoor training due to winter settling in the Cape.