In 2001 I decided my Goal will be to do the Comrades marathon 89km in 2003.
So, I started to train. In the Defense Force we had Wednesday’s that we could train from 12:00 in the afternoon. Only 1 training session a week was not enough so I had to do basically Saturday and Sunday races to get my fitness up. This helped me a lot as I did 1 year 58 races. The only problem was I lost my core training after I was an Instructor in the Defense Force, so I had to look for another way of getting my core strength back. I cannot remember how I met my Taekwondo Instructor (Master) but I started to do Taekwondo Martial Arts twice a week (Tuesday’s & Thursday’s).
I had a Game R399 mountain bike this was my only transport as I was not in possession of a vehicle at the time. 3 times a week I rode my bicycle from Lyttleton to Voortrekkerhoogte (Now Thaba Tshwane) and back.
My Training Schedule then……
Tuesday’s for Taekwondo Training +- 14km
Wednesday’s for Running 10km Miltary Club Run 10km (From Spoortsfields to Voortrekker Monument and back.
Thursday’s for Taekwondo Training +- 14km
This was not the only riding I did. When I needed coffee and sugar and milk etc I had to fetch it from Shoprite and that was also about 10km.
So, the moral of the story is:
My fitness I gained to build up for my goal in 2003 assisted of:
2. Taekwondo Martial Arts
So, I build up my endurance to reach these little goals in preparation of the Main goal.
1. 10km time = 40min (Pirates 10km in Randburg)
2. 15km time = 1h03 (Colgate Road Race Boksburg)
3. 21.1Km time = 1h32 (Bosal 21.1/5km Road Race in Randburg)
4. 32km time = 2h37 (Tough One in Randburg)
5. 42.2km time = 3h30 (Wally Hayward in Centurion)
6. 50km time = 4h10 (Hartbeespoort Dam)
7. 56km time = 5h08 (Two Oceans in Cape Town)
Time flied so fast as 2003 was coming at a very fast paste but I was ready. Scared a bit but ready indeed.
THE BIG DAY
On the day of the BIG Ultimate Human Race 16 June 2003 I was at starting line in Pietermaritzburg waiting to do this long day. As they say it was Exam day and that it was indeed.
As the gun went off at 05:30 I started my watch and my C Batch started running it took me less than 3minutes to go over the Start Line and I immediately started to paste myself in other words not running faster as my predicted minutes per kilometer. I had 6min/km average to complete the 89km and be in on Bill Rowan sub 9hours.
I can remember so good on 70km to go by a waterpoint the song of Mandoza played: Nkalakatha. This song stayed in my mind the whole way. This song kept my mind busy but did not influence my running. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RqkVq3u4_fY
As nutrition’s I only had 5 packets of VOOMA Corn Syrup with me inside bank sachets attached with pins to my running pants. I started using it after the first 20km in 15km intervals. So as the comrades progressed, I became lighter. At halfway mark +- 44km my time was 4h12min and was within my predicted goal time. The first hill after halfway I decided to walk but only for 20sec. I started running then again. At 15km to go I saw my time I have is way too much I need to lose time as I had entered a Competition at Montrose One Stop and I predicted my finish time as 8h54. I am not sure what my time was, but I can guess if I did a 15km in 1h03 (flat route) and this is all the way downhill I think I must have had about 1h30 or so. I started running and walking but not stopping to make up time. By the time I got into the stadium in Durban I couldn’t walk anymore as all the applause of the supporters made it impossible. So, I had to say goodbye competition and my finish time was 8h47. I can just say that the model of running shoes Asics Gel 1080 made my Comrades in 2003 as my legs were not sore at all. I could walk like normal where the other runners you could see struggled walking. Thank You God for giving me this wonderful day in my life on Earth.