Tag Archives: 10k

Practice Running Faster Paces


No doubt I am having fun with my running right now. I have big dreams but it is going to take time to get to where I need to be…biggest lesson I’ve learnt so far is that THE JOY IS IN THE JOURNEY. EMBRACE IT!

6 weeks into training and if I didn’t know any better I would say I am still on a Comrades high – that feeling that nothing is impossible? I still have it!

Training has been going well. The workouts are getting tougher – definitely being challenged on all different levels but I can feel I am getting stronger and faster, ran a 1min PB for my recent 10K race at Old Eds. Progress…1min closer to sub-60mins!

Track Sessions

By now my weekly trip to the track has me psyched for the whole week! Track sessions are not that hard once I get going but at first glance it is an “OMG…I have to do that?” I did feel a bit intimidating going to the track in the beginning with all the other runners there but I’ve decided I really don’t care who knows how slow I am. Like everyone else I am there to work on getting faster and that is it.

Now I am a regular at the track, excited and very comfortable going there, even training with the SA Masters Champs!! They’ve even made me ran an unofficial 200m and 300m PB already! It is great to see “elite” and faster people in action, love the way they move and learning so much just by watching them.

I love the track sessions. I know I should not say it but I find running on the track much easier than running on the road, maybe its because I am absolutely focus when I am there or maybe because there is no hills! Just feel like I can run in circles the whole day. I’ve done 32 laps in 2 of my sessions already – that is 8miles (12km) on a track! Yip, that never in a million years feeling 🙂

My Playground - UJ Track

My Playground – UJ Track

The best thing about the track is that I am running at paces I can never run on the road during my training runs (I really try!) but it is very hilly around where I stay (excuses!). I need to run quite far out to find a decent stretch of road with not a lot of traffic. I never feel I practice running fast, which is why I like going to the track. I know the pace that I need to run, and when I am there…that is what I practice. The interesting thing is I actually managed the faster paces quite comfortably so now to put it to practice on the road!

Another advantage of running on track that I have found is that I focus on my form. It’s probably due to watching some of the faster runners, they are so upright and they look so strong. Let’s just say when I’m running on the track I pretend I am Paula Radcliffe or Kara Goucher. It helps, it is starting to feel like I am actually running…not shuffling…and I love-it! 🙂

Nike Soweto Marathon

I was planning on doing Kaapsehoop as my 10th marathon but when I saw the Soweto Marathon backed by Nike I signed up immediately!

Soweto Marathon is special on so many different levels – for me because it was my first 10K race and now 4 years later I feel ready to tackle the full marathon. Make no mistake – this is a tough course, very hilly and not to mention some of the challenges on the day from what I’ve heard and know from my 10K race experience – no water and refreshments at water tables (Note to Self: be prepared…for anything!)

Most runners say just go run the Soweto Marathon for the “experience” and find another marathon for your PB. I probably would’ve had it easier running Kaapsehoop Marathon, but who needs easy, right? I will train harder!

I’ve never been so excited about training for a marathon, to be honest my marathon training has always evolved around training for an ultra as the goal race (and that goes for both my Rome and Paris marathons, they were just qualifiers and training runs for Comrades) which meant I was too scared to just run it flat out as I kept thinking of the next week’s “running on tired legs” I had lined-up!

This time I don’t have any ultras planned for a while so I am 100% focus and committed to achieving my Nike Soweto Marathon goal! I’ve embraced the “We Run Soweto” spirit – with NIKE as title sponsor the Soweto Marathon promises to be the EPIC race it deserves to be!

Quote of the day: ” Listen to your body, believe in your training and obsess over the training and end goal.” Rock Creek Runner


Sweet November


photo-13November just turned out to be a great month. Weather has just been perfect for early morning running and my hard work is slowly starting to pay off! I am on such a high at the moment, just seems like everything is starting to come together. I see progress every single day and that keeps me motivated. Major surprise…I received the ‘Spirit of Comrades’ award at KRC’s Awards evening. Did not see that one coming. Really chuffed with myself!

I AM getting faster

photo-12Training has been going exceptional well. I have been lucky enough to stick to my programme. I manage to run a sub-30min 5K in a training run! Just decided one morning I am going to go all out. And there it was, 29mins! My proven “track” record that I am capable of running a 10K in under 60mins, just need to keep the focus…

Races are so unpredictable. So many things have to go right on the day to run a PB. Based on the paces that I am able to hit in my workouts it is just a matter of time and place now. I manage to cut-off another 2 minutes of my 10K time in my last race for a new PB of 62mins. I can now smell that sub-60min 10K – 2mins, that’s less than 400m away!!! (I manage to hit 1:53 during a 8X400m repeats session, so I know I can do this)

I NEED to get much stronger

Hills are still my nemesis so I need to get serious about strengthening my core. I don’t particular like the gym workouts, but I can see how this too will help me become a faster stronger runner. Just need to do more of it…

Working hard on my mental toughness

My weakest link is still my mind. I still have a lot of work to do when it comes to mental toughness. I give up way to easy, but I can feel that with each race I am getting stronger and better at keeping my pace for longer and not give in to the urge to WALK!

I’ve been watching what I am eating

The last 3 months I have been following all the twitter hype on the Paleo and LCHF diet and man is it confusing. Keep asking myself so what’s next? What I do know is that refined sugars and carbs are not good for the body and so I have been slowly just cutting out the bad stuff!

One of the guys I follow on twitter is Brian Mackenzie from Crossfit Endurance and I just like the plain and simple way in which he explain things like processed foods and his take on the paleo and lchf thing. Basically he is saying “If it come out of a box” it’s not good…I can relate to that.

Yes, now I am reading the labels! I don’t have cereal for breakfast, don’t eat bread, I don’t drink sugar in my coffee anymore, no fruit juices or fizzy drinks, drinking sparkling water (until someone tells us that’s a no-no) to curb those cravings BUT I have lost 4kg so far!!!

Keep Focus

I feel healthier and fitter than I have ever been in my entire life. All this just makes me very happy and excited – really looking forward to start training for my Comrades 2014 qualifier now!

Becoming Mentally Tough…


Yes, I have now become completely obsessed with my “silly” 10K time goal. I know I can do it, which is why I cannot let go, not yet. My training has been going so well. Racing, that’s another story. But everyday I see and feel that I am becoming stronger both physically and mentally. I love getting out every morning just giving my best. Honestly, never have there been a time where I did not want to get up for my run in the mornings. If I have missed a session it’s because I was listening to my body and then could not wait for the next day to get out there. I think I am now officially a running addict.

My last three 10K races were not the easiest. They all came with their own challenges…from massive crowds, slow starts, heavy down pours to very hilly courses. I just keep telling myself what does not kill you makes you stronger. I have learned a lot about pacing, racing and mental strength in the last 8 weeks. This is so different from running the marathon. I am completely focus on the task at hand. There really is no time to think (the reason why I have not blogged that often as well, I normally come up with my blog content on those long runs). But with shorter hill sessions and repeats I just focus on getting through the session and nothing else!

It is clear that my 10K time goal is not gonna come easy. Not even sure if it will happen in 2013. If I want to run this 10K PB I have to learn to become tough and aggressive mentally. Clearly the focus for the next few weeks! But I don’t mind. I don’t think I have had so much fun with my running as I am having right now. It is so nice to just train hard and build yourself for your future adventures. No pressures of major marathons looming (at this stage).

Quote: “Push harder than yesterday, if you want a different tomorrow” Anonymous