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Race Review: Lion of Africa 21.1km – 4 February 2017

I ran the Lion of Africa half marathon for the first time last year, I went into the race with hardly any running prior and since I had no knowledge of the route, I thought I would be ok……..boy was I wrong!!! This race takes place in Constantia and as any Cape Town runner knows, Constantia has a lot of hills. Last year I regretted not running the 10km with my colleagues instead, the last 5km of this race is the toughest.

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So this year going into the race, I was haunted by the hills and the agony from the previous year. The difference this year, I started my marathon training earlier and I have been focusing on strength training days at the gym as well as the various hikes I have been doing with friends, my legs were stronger.

The race starts nice and flat, the first 3-4 kms is easy, then the hills start coming, I was pretty surprised at how the hills were not difficult for me and that I pushed through each of them at a nice pace and with not too much effort. My legs didn’t feel like jelly at all, I only used one pack of my USN Vooma energy gel at the 12km mark. By the time I reached the last 5km which has 3 hills, I still had enough energy and I could still push all the way to the finish line.

I completed this race in 03:00:56 in 2016 so I was really chuffed with myself to finish in 02:44:11 this year, 15mins faster J . Progress is an amazing motivator, so I will keep up with the training and keep tracking the progress. I am hoping to finish the next 21.1km race in 02:30:00.

This was a good race to check the fitness level, since the Berlin Marathon is a flat race, the hills are going to help me have a great pace in Berlin.

The next race will be the Cape Peninsula Half Marathon taking place this Sunday, 19 February

See you on the road

Will you be joining the RYC Celebrity Crews

adidas South Africa revealed four South African celebrity crews participating in the highly anticipated Run Your Crew, the unique, inner city crew run, redefining the way of running.
The four celebrity crews consist of some of the country’s most beloved TV, radio and online personalities:
The City Sixers
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The City Sixers are captained by two of SA’s favourite sons, Maps Maponyane and Lunga Shabalala. Both TV presenters and models, Maps also finds time to fill his days as an actor, designer, businessman and philanthropist. Joburg born and raised, these stylish gents have built their profile by staying busy and knowing where the best parties are at.
So if you miss the guys on the route – you’ll know to find them at the Block Party because The City Sixers run together and The City Sixers party together.
IOL (In Our Lane)
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Amanda du Pont, a well-known actor, television host, voice over artist, model, MC, businesswoman and long-time friend of adidas has taken up position as head honcho of IOL. Right beside her is Mapule Ndhlovu, Woman’s Health Next Fitness Star Winner 2016.
This crew of health-conscious fitness enthusiasts are ready to push their energy limits at RYC. They train together daily, to ensure RYC is more of walk in the park than a run in the city.
The Stripes
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This power crew is made up of 5fm DJ, Tumi Voster; fashion and lifestyle bloggers, Twiggy and Lulama; Instagrammer Lindiwe; NYC based fashion writer, Kenny and fashion blogger and vlogger, Keagan Carlin.
A team of very well-connected, like-minded women you’ll no doubt be seeing and hearing a lot of social noise from on the night of RYC.
#LetUsRun
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SA biokineticist, Survivor SA Maldives runner-up and adventure enthusiast from Joburg, Letshego Zulu, captains #LetUsRun, a crew in peak physical condition for RYC with 2 extreme trail runners, 4 Comrades runners and 5 Two Oceans Ultra Marathon runners, RUN is exactly what they do. This crew is all about adventure and the idea of not knowing the route before the night of RYC is exactly that.
RYC Block Party
Run Your Crew has a unique format which requires you to choose your running crew, and on the night, choose your distance of either 4km, 8km and 12km as well as your route. As long as you start together and finish together. Participants can look forward to running alongside the above mentioned as well as global crews.
With all crews finishing together at a block party hosted directly at the finish line, runners will be welcomed by a festive and engaging experience which takes them from the run to the party. The impressive live acts and DJ line-up includes: DJ Zinhle, Desmond & the Tutus; Plaat Japie, Khuli Chana, Petite Noir, Kid Fonque, DJ Kent, Da Capo and DJ Lag.
Join the adidas Runners community and the RYC celebrity crews at Runbase, Braamfontein, during the month of November for weekly night runs followed by social crew evenings on the Runbase deck. Follow the schedule on Facebook.
To register visit runyourcrew.com, or follow @adidasZA on Twitter / Instagram and use the hashtag #WHYIRUNJOBURG to join the conversation.

WOMEN’S NATIONAL BASKETBALL LEAGUE – SOUTH AFRICA

There has always been a struggle to gain support for women’s basketball, it’s always as something that will only happen if the Men’s competition is successful. If you look at any professional leagues around the world, like the NBA , which started in 1946 but the WNBA only started in 1996, 50 year wait. Terrible!!!

The BNL (Basketball National League) has been running for the last 3 years and there’s been no sign of the women’s competition starting. The Sports Minister, Fikile Mbalula, stated that the Women’s BNL will start in 2015 when he launched the BNL in 2013. He also said that “ if we (women) want to play professionally, we should play netball”, this coming from a Minister shows where women are seen in sports that were previously male only.

So imagine my surprise when I turned on the TV  to watch the BNL final and saw a women’s final playing, I have not seen South African women’s final on TV in years, I was intrigued and thoroughly enjoyed watching the game. I did have lots of questions though, for example:

  1. Does this mean National League for women is starting?
  2. If this is the final, when did this league start?
  3. Why are they showing Gauteng games only?
  4. Are the players being paid to play?

I am sure that a lot of players from different provinces had lots of questions too.

Well just to give you the thought/idea behind the Women’s final.

There was a committee that pushed to have the Women’s BNL started but the biggest issue is the funds. The Department of Sports Recreation had committed to 3 year sponsorship deal with BNL, after which it had to be self-funded. Now before you start thinking, if this 3 year deal was for men only, then the next 3 years’ funding should be for women, unfortunately that is not the case. The 3 year deal was for basketball as a whole, the Sports and Recreations Department would cover everything for the 3 years to get the professional league on it’s feet and then BNL should be self-funded. The BNL exec should have then split the funds to benefit basketball as a whole (men,women and youth). Unfortunately, the only people who have benefited from this deal are the men, the women and youth will be put in the back burner as money has “dried up”. Some of the BNL teams have striked during the 2016 season and refused to play due to not being paid.

Going back to the questions I asked earlier regarding the final, see below answers,

  1. Women’s BNL is not starting yet, this was a pilot to show case women’s basketball and hopefully lead to a Women’s BNL League.
  2. There was no real league, it was just 4 teams that played (Fierce Angels, Sturdy Stars, Bona Fide Rocks and Lungi Giants) and
  3. No, the players were not paid.

I would like to thank all of those ladies that played in this 4 team tournament for starting something, it’s now up to all of us in our various provinces to start thinking and coming up with ideas of how the women’s BNL will start and how it will work. Unfortunately it will always come down to finances but I know when women come together things happen. We will have to fight to get things started, which is frustrating but that has never stopped us before.

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Congratulations Sturdy Stars. Image courtesy of BNL

If you would like to send any suggestions, email mdlalikazi@gmail.com and I will send all the suggestions to our Johannesburg sisters.

Dlala Mdlalikazi, Ball is life.

New York Marathon 2016

The New York Marathon, which happens to be one of my bucket list races, took place yesterday.

Mary Keitany of Kenya comfortably took the lead from the 16km mark and had a huge gap, running to her third consecutive victory, finishing in a time of 2:24:26.Sally Kipyego of Kenya, placed second in 2:28:01, and Molly Huddle of the United States,placed third in 2:28:13. Keitany is the first woman to win three in a row since Grete Waitz won five from 1982 to 1986.

20 year old Ghirmay Ghebreslassie, made history as the youngest and only Eritrean citizen to win the New York City Marathon finishing in a time of 2:07:51, beating the experienced favourites. Lucas Rotich of Kenya placed second  in 2:08:53 and Abdi Abdirahman, a Somali-born American finished third in 2:11:23.

Congratulations to everyone that completed the race, I hope to be one of them in the future.

Images courtesy of NYRR

BreakPoint Challenge – 26 November 2016

The inaugural BreakPoint Challenge is taking place at Bloemendale Wine Estate, Cape Town.

The BreakPoint Challenge is a trail run for all athletic and fitness levels to enjoy! Exhilarating obstacles,water obstacle,fitness events, music and an amazing festival area. The entry categories cater for a variety of fitness levels: elite athletes, runners of all abilities, kids and families looking for a fun experience.

If you are looking for a challenge, this event is for you. You can enter as an individual or grab your friends and enter as a group.

Tickets are selling fast so book now.

Visit http://breakpointchallenge.co.za/ for more information or http://qkt.io/Cpxo6v to purchase your ticket. Also follow the BreakPoint facebook page for updates.

Hope to see you !!!

adidas Run Your Crew – Entries are open

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Is your crew ready? Hurry!!

Runners must now register to secure one of the limited spaces available by signing up their six crew members at runyourcrew.com. Entries cost R1200 per crew (R200 per person). All registered crews will receive an entry to the race, an adidas race pack and access to the block party. The race pack contains six adidas RYC race tees, phone pouches, R75 Uber vouchers, timing chips and RYC stickers. After finishing the race together each crew member will also receive their access band to the block party.
Join the adidas Runners community at Runbase, Braamfontein, during the month of November for weekly night runs followed by social crew evenings on the Runbase dec

Register for adidas Run You Crew runyourcrew.com #WHYIRUNJOBURG #RYC

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Run Your Crew – RYC

adidas, the world’s leading sportswear innovator,  revealed RYC, a unique running event aimed at bringing running crews and adidas Runners communities together from around the globe, to run, connect and celebrate the spirit of urban running.

This inner-city crew night run will take place in Johannesburg on Dec. 3, 2016 at 7 p.m. and offers a unique format: Runners must enter a six-person crew to compete, with all crews able to choose the route or distance they’d like to run on the night of the race. The only rule is that all members of a crew must stay within 50 m of each other for the entire run.

The run starts for all crews at the Sci Bono Centre in Newtown. Each crew has the option to run 4, 8 or 12 km, with the routes diverging at multiple points along the course. All routes converge again for the last kilometer, having all crews finish together at a multi-stage block party hosted directly at the finish line.

“What better way to celebrate the year end in Johannesburg? Created around existing urban running behaviours, we’re aiming to bring together young, urban runners and welcome everyone to the adidas Runners community. Runners will be able to train for RYC with their crews at our weekly runs hosted at Runbase, the home of adidas Runners,” said Pieter Warnich, senior manager Running at adidas South Africa.

adidas Runners is a global group of runners who meet and run from Runbase, an exciting community hub. This is where runners meet to share experience, get tested and even purchase their favourite adidas running shoes. The first South African Runbase opened in Braamfontein in 2015, with the second planned for Cape Town.

“Running provides energy for people to do amazing things with their lives, and through this run that brings international and local running crews and adidas Runners communities together, everyone will tap into this collective potential. There will be a phenomenal prize for the winning crew that runs the 12 km race, so select your members carefully,” Warnich concluded.

To participate, simply sign up your crew of six members at runyourcrew.com. Registration is now open.

To learn more, visit runyourcrew.com, watch the reveal video https://youtu.be/tXkSRsdwC-oor follow @adidasZA on Twitter / Instagram and use the hashtag #WHYIRUNJOBURG to join the conversation

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FIBA 3X3 World Champs, 11 – 15 Oct 2016

The 3×3 World Champs took place in Guangzhou China last week. The very best representing their National teams. The tournament featured 20 men and 20 women teams.

There were 5 events taking place, the men’s 3×3 tournament, the women 3×3 tournament, the Shout-out Contest (men & women), the Skills Contest (women) and the Dunk contest (men)

Day 1 and 2 saw teams playing each in their respective pools, the top 2 team from each pool progressed to the last 16 and played knock-out games all the way to the final.

The finals were between  Serbia vs USA (men) and Czech Republic vs Ukraine (women)

Winners: Serbia (men) & Czech Republic(women)

Final standings of the FIBA 3×3 World Championships

Men

1. Serbia
2. USA
3. Slovenia
4. Spain
5. Qatar
6. Netherlands
7. Hungary
8. Uruguay
9. Philippines
10. Russia
11. Japan
12. Indonesia
13. Andorra
14. Romania
15. Italy
16. Egypt
17.Turkey
18. China
19. New Zealand
20. Poland

Women

1. Czech Republic
2. Ukraine
3. USA
4. Spain
5. France
6. Hungary
7. Netherlands
8. Argentina
9. Italy
10. China
11. Australia
12. New Zealand
13. Poland
14. Romania
15. Chinese Taipei
16. Andorra
17. Indonesia
18. Macau
19. Japan
20. Cook Islands

It would be great to see South Africa have a team taking part next world champs. To take part in the World Championships, your National federation selects the individuals who will be in the team.

In order to be eligible to be selected, players would have to:

  1. Have the nationality of the country you are representing
  2. Register on 3x3planet.com
  3. Take part in a minimum of 2 FIBA-endorsed 3×3 events

We will be chatting with Fiba Africa to find out how or when 3×3 tournaments can also take place on South Africa soil.

Watch this space!!!

Image credit: www.fiba.com

ACT Sunset Team Time Trial

Wednesday 19 Oct 2016

Grab your friends and/or colleagues and take part in a short relay race. It’s short, quick and great for everyone, no matter your fitness level.

Each team will consist of 4 runners, and each runner will run 3 kms.  The 3 km lap will take in the stadium surrounds, pedestrian and cycle paths, and the Green Point Urban Park.

The event will be capped at 100 teams (400 runners).

Refreshments will be on sale in the club house.  Clubs are also welcome to erect their gazebos on the field.

Event Details

Venue:  Green Point Cricket Club, on the corner of Vlei and Fritz Sonneberg Roads.

Parking:  At the club and surrounding roads next to the new athletics stadium.

Start Time: 18:15

Race Cut-off: 19:45

Go to https://www.atcmultisport.club/events/atc-sunset-ttt-oct-2016  to enter and more information.