The Ups and Downs of Winter


I can’t exactly say training has been smooth sailing the last 2 weeks. It’s a mental struggle to get out of the door and hit the road in the mornings. I have no problem waking up; most mornings I am up before the alarms goes off. I have coffee in bed (can’t function without that first cup of coffee) but then the massive procrastination starts and before I know it the clocks start ticking and my brain starts to work overtime calculating how many kilometers I will be able to run if I get out of the house right now…or right now…or right now! I’ve never since I started my running journey have experienced a slump like this before. It’s almost like I can’t stomach my usual routes. “If I have to go up that hill or cross that street one more time? I just can’t”! I started to experiment with running after work now. Same story!

…Blame Winter!

It hasn’t been all bad. I am getting strength training done! Somehow I find it much easier to get out of the house to go to gym! For the first time since my running journey I am starting to enjoy doing strength work. I am still not 100% there where I can be trusted to do the strength work on my own, so for  now I am enjoying the instructor-led classes. It took me some time to figure out which classes to attend but I have finally found the right mix of cross training, core work, pilates and yoga to keep me at the gym for the next few months

…Thanks Winter!

Like most runners I am lazy when it comes to stretching after runs. I’ve read that it’s better to cut your run short by 10mins to make time to stretch but by the time I get back from my run time is up! This is where yoga and pilates classes comes in handy. I get a great core and balance workout, however the stretching is where I get the biggest bang for my buck (time). I used to feel misaligned and even had lower back pain but since I’ve started doing pilates and yoga those ailments have disappeared. I’m really feeling strong and flexible. The exercises below are my favorites and I no longer run after the physio ball the whole session (lol!)

…Gym, my new BFF!

I did managed to get some good runs in on the trails over the last 2 weeks. Let’s just say the trails might have just been my saving grace. I have so much fun on the trails and because I do it over the weekend I really relax and enjoy the run.

  • Week 1: Groenkloof 2 x 10.5km – Tough little technical route especially the first and last 2km

    Groenkloof 10km

    Groenkloof 10km

  • Week 2: Casa-Lee Country Village 21km -Easy 21k route compared to Groenkloof. I could feel my strength work paying off on this trail run. Except for my calves killing me within the first 3km I felt really strong running this trail race

    Casa-Lee 21km

    Casa-Lee 21km

…Trail, my saving grace!

Only one month of winter slogging left, but with the 50km Magaliesberg trail race looming I am bound to snap out of this slump sooner!

Quote of the day: “Sometimes the smallest step in the right direction ends up being the biggest step of your life. Tip toe if you must, but take the step” Unknown

About Moerieda Mackay

Late to running and absolutely loving it! I'm married to my soulmate, Adam and blessed with 3 beautiful children. I am a Business Transformation and Innovation Professional and holds a MSc (Eng) in Industrial Engineering. Yip, a bit of a workaholic. I became addicted to ultra running whilst searching for that elusive “work-life” balance at the age of...40! I have no sporting background and with zero athletic ability running is by far the most challenging thing I've taken on but it has put me on a path of self discovery and serious transformation both physically, mentally and spiritually...and I love it!

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