Mountain Biker of the Week – Nicolas Westman
How did you get into mountain biking? Through Megan and Mason Harrison , he asked if I would like to do one of the MiWay big 5 races in Mtunzini this past May.
How long have you been riding? I have been riding for 7 months.
What is your favourite distance to ride and why? Anything above 50km , because it challenges your fitness and mental strength to keep going .
Who is your biggest mountain biking inspiration and why? Rourke Croeser , because he’s from a small town like me .
What is your biggest or best mountain biking achievement? What are you most proud of? My best achievement is 4th place overall for the senior category in the 25km MiWay Big 5 series and my biggest achievement is finishing the Jeep Hill2Hill 100km race in september after only riding for 4 months.
What is your favourite mountain biking quote? “If you don’t go you won’t know”
Where is your favourite place to ride and tell us why? Anywhere that has lots of hills , purely because it challenges your limits and helps improve your riding
Why do you ride? For the joy of being out in the wilderness with friends and family.
What has been/is your biggest mountain biking challenge and how did you/ do you overcome it? My biggest challenge so far I would have to say is riding in the intense heat and suffering from overheating or dehydration and I find that drinking lots of water and slowing your pace down allows you to carry on for longer .
What is the biggest life lesson mountain biking has taught you? Biggest lesson I have learned is definitely to not give in or give up !
What race/s is/are on your bucket list? Definitely the ABSA Cape Epic
Who is your dream mountain biking partner and why? Sam “the racing snake” Erasmus because when we ride together we always push ourselves harder .
What do you love about mountain biking? Being outdoors seeing the wild side of life and its a sport that everyone can enjoy together.
How do you deal with disappointment or injury from a mental perspective? Talk about what happened and why I’m disappointed , it helps you realize your mistakes and allows you to learn from them.
What is the number 1 tip you would give to a brand new mountain biker? Set yourself a goal and don’t doubt your own ability .
Do you use any mountain biking apps or gadgets? If so what is your favourite and tell us a bit about it? No not anymore , I used to use endomondo but now I just read mountain biking magazines for tips on how to improve haha
Where can we find you on socials networks? (Twitter/facebook/blogs) , orShare This Post
How did you get into running? After an illness in my early 30’s my doctor told me it would be unlikely that I would ever run, ski, exercise in any meaningful fashion. That was like waving a red rag to a bull! So mid-30’s I took my first step and ran down the Brighton seafront…
How long have you been running? I started running seriously for 8 years. I started with a very slow 2km from my house down to the Brighton pier and built up from there. My first race was the Brighton half marathon, which I ran in support of the Sussex Beacon our local HIV / AIDS hospice. It was a cold, blustery February morning, I finished in 1 hour 47min and was hooked!
What is your favourite distance to run and why? I enjoy all distances – 10k’s, half’s and marathon’s. They all require a different mindset and level of focus, training and I love the challenges all of them pose. However, my favourite is still the 3/4 miles along the Brighton seafront…
Who is your biggest running inspiration and why? Mo Farah – anyone who can win the Olympic double is a hero in my eyes…
What is your biggest or best running achievement? What are you most proud of? My Two Oceans time — I completed in 5 hours 17 mins. Just thrilled…
What is your favourite running quote? “At 26.2 miles there’s a sign that says ‘This is the distance of a marathon’. There is white line painted on the concrete indicating the exact spot. I exaggerate only a bit when I say that the moment I straddled that line a slight shiver went through me, for this was the first time I’d ever run more than a marathon. For me this was the Straight of Gibraltar, beyond which lay an unknown sea. What lay in wait beyond this, what unknown creatures were living there, I didn’t have a clue.” What I talk about when I talk about running, Haruki Murakami
Where is your favourite place to run and tell us why? My favourite running route is along the sea front in Brighton. You start at the docks at the edge of Portslade, past Hove lagoon and Continue readingShare This Post
How did you get into trail running? I’m a member of New Balance Multisport club and my friend Lisa, who was trail captain at the time, gave me total FOMO with her newsletters and passion for trail – I started joining her weekly runs – the love grew from there.
How long have you been trail running? Nearly 2 years.
What is your favourite distance to run and why? That’s kinda a hard question with trail running, because every race/terrain is different – distance can be very deceiving when it comes to trail.
Who is your biggest trail running inspiration and why? My husband is my biggest inspiration, he’s an amazing athlete and my biggest supporter. And my trail running friends inspire me – pushing boundaries and comfort zones all the time.
What is your biggest or best running achievement? What are you most proud of? Definately the Fairview Drylands Traverse – running back to back and it’s also running the longest distance I’ve ever done in one go. I’m most proud that I finished with a smile and made amazing friends along the way.
What is your favourite trail running quote? Dory’s “Just keep on swimming” on the hills – LOL! And my team-mate and friend, Shirley’s words – ‘small steps’, also on hills!!
Where is your favourite place to run and tell us why? Continue readingShare This Post
How did you get into triathlon? An ex boy friend of mine did Triathlon, and in no time I was hooked onto this amazing sport
How long have you been in triathlon? I started training in July this year and did the 5150 Bela Bela as my first Triathlon. Only been in Triathlon for 5 months
What is your favourite discipline and why? It’s a tough choice between cycling and running. I enjoy the cycling as it’s the only discipline where I can catch my breath, on the other hand I have a good running background so I find it easy.
Who is your biggest triathlon inspiration and why? There are so many. As an entire package it would have to be Chrissie Wellington and Lucie Reed. Both are phenomenal athletes and I dream to be on that level someday.
What is your biggest or best triathlon achievement? What are you most proud of? Would have to be claiming the 11Global squared title together with the fastest run and bike split J
What is your favourite triathlon quote? “Winning isn’t everything, but wanting to win is!”
Where is your favourite place to train and tell us why? Continue readingShare This Post
We received this update on ‘s condition from Ian Laxton on Tuesday 3 December 2013.
Good day everyone,
I am pleased to report that these complications have resolved themselves, except for the use of a nasal cannula to breathe. She is in high spirits and is receiving aggressive physiotherapy, and has even started walking around the ward, assisted. Fifty metres in 5 minutes is not exactly world record pace, but, like the first man on the moon, it is a ‘giant step.’Her condition improves daily. Early last week, typically in post-trauma recovery, her body took some serious knocks as a result of the repair process that was taking place. She had difficulty breathing, resulting in an aggressive regimen of oxygen supplementation being put into place via a face mask and breathing machine. She also developed a pneumonia.We continue to be amazed by the number of enquiries we are receiving daily about Sonja’s condition. All of us appreciate immensely the wave of love and affection that has come Sonja’s way, now 16 days after her accident. It has not diminished at all. In fact, many people still call regularly, and I know that many others would like to know what is happening, but realise that handling the volume of calls takes time on our side.
We await her move out of ICU, but the timing of that milestone remains unclear. The final move back home is still in the future. Pray that it is before Christmas.
Regards and thanks again.
Kim and Ian
The interview below was done with Kim Laxton on the most recent Run Talk SAShare This Post
This weekend I took part in the Midlands Ultra Triathlon. Aside from the weather, it was well organized – but we can’t have it all.
After a terrible experience in the water, during which I was even passed by a fellow athlete towing his son in a canoe, I thought to myself, why do I even do this?
I managed to finish the swim and strolled into transition, and then started to jog a bit. I began to think that since I was here, I might as well do what I could to recover. Conditions weren’t perfect on the bike, but having endured worse I stayed positive.
It must have been somewhere out on the ride, as I passed what seemed to be a bike I would find on my wish list for Santa (except that this Santa didn’t look too jolly as I passed him), that I had an epiphany — why I do Tri.
It seems to me that I start with a personal challenge to beat someone or to race, but come race day, when it’s just me out there with the wind whistling through small vents in my helmet, that I quickly realize that each one of the athletes competing is on their own journey. From the beginner to the elite, each competitor has personal goals – and while I love passing a bloke on a bike I secretly (or not so secretly, anymore) lust after, it’s not about that. I pass him, and someone else passes me as we all travel the same journey to our personal goals. This concept may not seem obvious for our sport-mad country, but it isn’t about making the finish line as fast as possible.
Each one of us athletes has challenged ourselves – often for some reason outside of the sport. Each athlete comes to the race with their “baggage” – a reason to prove “they can do it”.
The recent diagnosis of my mother’s cancer has made this challenge more than simply a race. It provides hope, a hope that if I can somehow overcome a physical personal challenge then perhaps, my mom’s race against the cancer can also be challenged, raced and conquered, making the medal more meaningful. Don’t get me wrong – medals for races are meaningful – but having a different force driving me to succeed makes it that much more meaningful.
The thought began to form that perhaps I wasn’t the only one out there today in between the rain and cold, redefining themselves out there, I became certain that others were racing for their own hopes too
To all of the competitors, whether you were the man towing his son or the guy dressed in his CHOC suit, well done!
Next time you are out there racing, challenge yourself, and remember for the majority of us, the race is one against only ourselves. There is no losing when we are out there.Share This Post
How did you get into road cycling? I began cycling on the track as an u14. I had read cycling magazines and wanted to get into MTB racing, but read an article that referred to track cycling coach Dave Street. It turned out that my mother knew him, and so I went to meet him and began training on the track with his group. I later began racing on the road, as my interest was in the endurance events on the track so road racing was complimentary. My goal was still eventually to race professionally on the MTB. Supported by Linden Cycles, I competed in as many road and MTB events as possible, hoping to be recognised by a MTB team. I literally accidentally met John Robertson, and from there my more serious road racing began with Team Bizhub and later the FJR Women’s Team. My focus has moved back to the MTB though.
How long have you been cycling? I started cycling in 2001 at the age of 14. I have been riding for 11 years, with two “brief sabbaticals” along the way.
What is your favourite distance to cycle and why? I most enjoy marathon distance (+/- 75km) on the MTB. I also really enjoy Ultra Endurance events, such as the Trans Baviaans. It appeals to me to see how long I can push myself for. The attraction was similar for the endurance events on the track, where I enjoyed seeing how far into the red I could push myself, and see who else would be able to stay with me.
Who is your biggest cycling inspiration and why? Continue readingShare This Post
How did you get into mountain biking? Strange story. I use to be a squash player but was diagnosed with a heart condition in 2011. I got told to get another form of exercise because squash cannot be no more. So I chose mountain biking. After much deliberation the Dr agreed and then it all started
How long have you been riding? First race was in November 2011
What is your favourite distance to ride and why? I have been limited with the distances I could do so far. At this stage the longest ride was a 25km. That is quite nice and my favourite so far but I would like to do at least a couple of 40’s. I think that it tests both physical and mental strength
Who is your biggest mountain biking inspiration and why? All these small kids who participate in the 10kms events and finish it! I think that is incredible.
What is your biggest or best mountain biking achievement? What are you most proud of? My biggest achievement – never gave up in a race as yet. Finished each and every one I have started so far. My proudest moment was actually finishing my very first race. That was the Lynford Classic and I thought I was going to die….
What is your favourite mountain biking quote? Continue readingShare This Post
How long have you been trail running? I have been trail running for about a year now.
What is your favourite distance to run and why? I love the shorter runs, but will be doing longer ones next year as I am getting fitter.
Who is your biggest trail running inspiration and why? Yanica Venter, the friend who got me into trail running in the first place.
What is your biggest or best running achievement? What are you most proud of? My biggest achievement was placing 15th in the open men at the 3de spur summer trail series at B’Sorah short course.
What is your favourite trail running quote? Every day is a good day to run.
Where is your favourite place to run and tell us why? Continue readingShare This Post
Tri Talker of the Week – Ryan Habib
How did you get into triathlon? When I was in high school, I did a few of the original 5fm Energade sprint tri series. I was very surprised when I made the Gauteng team – considering I was using a mountain bike – at the time. After that though, it was another 10 years before I would take part again.
How long have you been in triathlon? If one includes the early beginnings, since I was 16, so that’s 14 years.
What is your favourite discipline and why? My favorite individual discipline is the run. However, when mixing all 3 up, I look forward to the cycle. My worst is the swim.
Who is your biggest triathlon inspiration and why? I really admire people like Don van Gelder, who at 40 odd is still giving every “lighty” a run for their money. I also admire the guys finishing 70.3 in 7-8hrs, I think they are the ones who work the hardest on the day.
What is your biggest or best triathlon achievement? What are you most proud of? This is a strange one, my prouder moment is representing TSA at world long distance DUATHLON champs. It’s not triathlon, but it’s a highlight for me.
What is your favourite triathlon quote? Continue readingShare This Post