Se7en’s Two Oceans Journey: And Just Like That, I am Training for a Half Marathon…

Date Published: 07 Mar 2019 Categories: News
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After years and years of dreaming and thinking that this couldn’t possibly happen, I have begun training for the Two Oceans Half Marathon at the end of April. I have joined the #Oceans4 Team, a team of ambassadors for the Two Oceans Marathon and The Sport Science Institute of South Africa, and together we are going to be getting ourselves to the finish line…

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All good team work begins with a media event, where we got to meet each other and all the main players… from the Two Oceans Marathon, as well as the Team behind the Sports Science running programme… and were gifted with apparel and running shoes from the Official Technical Providers of the race, Adidas South Africa… I have to say, it is encouraging to know that so many folk want to see us complete our goal.

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All Programmes Begin With an Assessment

It’s been a while since I have done a fitness assessment at Sport Science… and since this one didn’t involve push ups or crunches, I was all for it. There were the usual measurements: blood pressure, cholesterol, weight and the like… and after that the Twelve Minute Motion Test. The Twelve Minute Motion Test is a measure of how far you can run around the track in twelve minutes and when I started at Sport Science two years ago I couldn’t run around the track and actually rode a stationary bike for twelve minutes… so progress has been made. The point of the test is to provide a baseline and at the end of the programme you can repeat the test to measure your progress.

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After our fitness assessment we received our training programme and I have to say, I was more than a little bit apprehensive. I usually run about 5km two nights a week and 10km over the weekends, and I knew our longer runs would get much longer, but I wasn’t expecting our weekly training runs to get that much longer as well… Turns out the mileage is going to be more than I thought it would be and I spent a day or two worrying about it, and then it was time run.

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Time to Run…

The lesson I learnt… very quickly and so soon: Don’t worry about the last weeks of the programme, in fact, don’t worry about the programme. Worry about your next work out; actually, just worry about getting there. Once you are there, the team will totally get you through the workout. This is very much a one step at a time journey… you can really only do so much, and then you blink and your workout for the day is done. I never dreamed I could run as far as I have already run on the programme and never imagined I could do something called a speed workout… when you run as fast as your legs can carry you… really!!! But I have done it and it was fantastic…

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I had this idea that the strength training workout would be next level impossible… it was tough, I am not going to kid you, and I know our first workout was intended to be a gentle one… but it definitely wasn’t impossible. Again, don’t look at the whole workout, just the next thing you are asked to do… break it down and then it can be done.

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I Am Slow But I Go…

My biggest worry about the whole programme was that I would be too slow. The thing is, when I run with friends I get left behind, and I never catch up. The harder I try to catch up the more tired I become and then I get disheartened. I really just want to give up. I had visions of my first training day: The pack departing without me, and well… you can imagine the rest. But here is the thing, the BEST thing, about the programme, is that the runners are of all abilities… and the runners naturally split up into three groups… a fast, a medium and a slow group… and they have a Biokineticist or a pacer running along with each group. This is invaluable, firstly I finish every run with a smile, not to mention within my capabilities… and secondly, we get to chat and I have learned so very much about the race we will be running. It has got me thinking about race day and strategising like nothing else. It has worked out so well. I am learning to run at a pace that is comfortable for me. Not to mention, when the going gets super tough, it’s really okay to just walk. I am learning so much from the back of the pack, that will be invaluable for all my running, not just on the day of the Two Oceans half Marathon, but forever.

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So wish me and the #Oceans4 team luck. Every single runner on the road, on the day of the race has their own reason for running… this race is the kind of race that is packed with a lot heart… part of me cannot wait for race day, and another part of me knows that there is a lot of work still to be done before race day. It is going to be good, it is going to be fun… and I have to say, I just can’t wait!!!

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