I started running in 2017 by setting a goal to run 17 races. Although I was tempted to continue the momentum by doing 18 races in 2018, I chose not to as I wanted to focus on quality over quantity this year. Running all those races in 2017 was fun but I never really had time to focus on the quality of my running. So although there were fewer races this year, I really felt I grew into my own as a runner. Well, it’s time to sit back and reflect on 2018. Courtney at Eat Pray Run is hosting a “Year of Running” Link Up with questions helping runners to sum up the year. Here is what I have to say, enjoy! 🙂
- full race recap. This was tough to answer as each race was different and came with such great lessons. But I think the Diacore Half Marathon takes the cup. It was my first Half Marathon and I ran the perfect race. My race strategy was to finish happy and strong and I did. As it was Mother’s Day, my sister brought my kids to spectate around the 12 km point and having my little girl run alongside me for a few metres of my first Half Marathon was amazing. But even more than that, it was the feeling of conquering a distance I never thought possible. Here is the
- Mile Time Trial I did at the National Stadium. I shaved 21 seconds off my previous time trial and felt like an absolute champion on that track. In the last few metres, I screamed and cheered. Just thinking about it now has me smiling from ear to ear! A close second is when I ran my fastest 16 km distance on a rare cloudy morning in Gaborone. Eliud Kipchoge had just beaten the world marathon record and I set off wanting to run 16 km in his marathon time, which I did! I enjoyed all the speed work I did leading up to the Soweto Half Marathon and my best run was the last
- 19 km Long Run it was what kept me going. For Christmas I got the BlueAnt Pump Air Wireless Sports Buds so I am really looking forward to trying those out as I haven’t been comfortable with my current earphones. In my first 18 months of running, I chose not to run with music. I’ve never really been into music in general but sometime this year I decided to get a music player for the days when I am alone on my long runs. I really enjoyed the experience and for my
- I can’t remember actually being told this and in many ways it kind of revealed itself to me on its own – “Be Stronger than Your Excuses”. Excuses are so easy to come by. I have one, actually several, before each run. And so many of my excuses are valid. That’s the thing. They don’t sound ridiculous. They are real reasons for not running, i.e. being exhausted after work or it being way too hot. But the secret I have found is to override those excuses with a stronger voice or by putting in place routines and contingency plans that ensure the run gets done.
- run a solo 200 m qualifying race to make it into the World Athletics Championships Semi Final after he had initially (and unfairly) been barred from running with others. Seeing him run alone on that track, in the rain, was so inspiring. But this year, I think I will nominate my running crew. Each one of them in their own way motivates me to work consistently and push harder to be better. Last year this was easy to answer – I would have gone with Isaac Makwala, one of the top athletes in Botswana. The specific inspirational moment was when he had to
- full recap. Oh, I have so many! But I am going to choose this collage of photos because of what they signify. I did my first Obstacle Course Race this year as a team. And the four of us really exemplified what a team is supposed to be. While others were fighting around us, we helped each other over each obstacle, and this series of photos shows Tapiwa helping me get over one of the obstacles after I had fallen into some very soapy water whilst doing the Rope Swing. This was solidarity at its very best. Here is the
- Best Looking Medal from the Year: I think this honour goes to the BDF Mogoditshane Medal. I loved the colour that is missing from so many of our medals.
- This was a toss-up between the Soweto Half Marathon and the last challenge I did, the Gaborone Striders 10 x 10 Challenge, both of which still need to be officially recapped. Soweto had a phenomenal vibe and running through the streets of Soweto to great cheers from its residents, old and young alike, was so special. And I think this will definitely become an annual event for me. But I think the experience I would do tomorrow without thinking twice, would be the 10 x 10 Challenge. We had to run and log 10 km a day, for 10 consecutive days, and then we all ran together on the Final Day of the challenge. It was awesome. I chose to run some days alone but on many days I was joined by different friends and family, including my dad. It challenged me mentally even more than physically and really lifted me from the slump I had gotten into after the Soweto Race.
- Resilience and Growth.
How was your year of running?! What was your best race experience? What is the best piece of advice you received? Please let me know in the Comments Section. Otherwise, if you are a runner blogger, join the link-up too as it is such a fun way of looking back and summing up the year! It’s open to the end of January 2019!