In the saddle: Patience. Getting back to it.

Don’t get me wrong, I love riding a bicycle and I always will. But I also enjoy running, which has taught me a new respect for “patience”.

Being selected for MAD2Run 2018 played a big role in driving the rediscovery of the joy of running. I had to learn to run again after injuring myself in 2014 and I had to exercise patience so that I didn’t overdo it (I have a tendency to do this). It was a run from Joburg to Cape Town after all, so I couldn’t not train. Through training for this adventure, and slowly teaching my body to run again, I began to remember the joy that running had brought me back in the day, when I used to spend hours on the side of Table Mountain clearing my head and enjoying being out in nature.

Unfortunately, MAD2Run didn’t go as planned and the running side of the journey took a back seat. That’s in the past, though. But the experience made me hunger for a new adventure! Crazy, I know, but what’s life without a little challenge?

Life is great when everything runs smoothly and things go to plan, but there are times when we have to deal with curve balls … often when we least expect them. How we deal with them builds our character. More often than not, curve balls lead to new experiences. It’s important to learn from your challenges rather than letting them get you down.

Right, back to the running journey.

Running is a simple pleasure, far less complicated than cycling as Carel will testify to! All you need is a pair of running shoes. There is no stressing about tyre pressure or servicing your bicycle so that it doesn’t fall apart. In addition to its simplicity, running requires a different type of discipline to cycling. When you ride a bicycle you have the luxury of freewheeling and giving your legs a rest. There is no freewheeling when you run. So if you go out too fast or deviate from your plan during a race, nine times out of 10 you are going to pay for it!

I have learnt the hard way (numerous times) by going out way too fast during a training run or race and then paying the price during the last 5 km when my legs felt like lead. I learn something new each time and this is a big reason why I have enjoyed the rejuvenation of my running. There is always something new to learn and I enjoy the challenge.

One of the main reasons I was able to come back stronger from the MAD2Run curve ball was because I was determined to learn from it and show myself that patience is a very powerful tool. It sounds very cliché, but things do happen for a reason!

Running has taught me to respect the art of patience. Everything isn’t always going to go as planned, but with enough patience you can make the outcomes work in your favour and learn from all the challenges that life has in store for you.

There is a crazy running journey on the horizon for me. It’s time to exercise my new-found appreciation for patience and learn from previous experiences. It’s definitely going to be an awesome challenge and I eagerly await to see what it is going to teach me.