I’m not sure where to start but here goes. There are no secrets in my journey, I lay it all on the table and hope that it inspires others, helps them and gives back to the people who do so much for me. I dedicate this blog to “MY TEAM” the people who behind the scenes help make my dreams come true. If it weren’t for them I would never ever be where I am today. They are so much part of my journey and I am so grateful for all they do for me. (I haven’t mentioned everyone today but will do in my next few blogs to come.)
Since my injury in May, after Prague Marathon, it really has been a long hard road and I must admit there were times where I wanted to give up, it seemed like I was just having blow after blow and I begun to think that this was the end of my journey and that ordinary people like me…mothers maybe cant be elite athletes and possibly shouldn’t. Never the less I hung tough, Its not in my character to give up and didn’t but not only because of my fight BUT also because of the fight and belief “My team” has in me. THEY wouldn’t let me give up and in the words of my incredible physio who is also one of my best friends in the world “Eat some cement and harden up Jen” hahaha. Wayne Holroyd knows me so well; he knows when to say that to me, yet he knows when he needs to give me his shoulder to cry on. Wayne is an incredible part of my team, he quite literally holds me together, physically and emotionally. I’ve never met a person who gives so much of his time and energy and is willing to drop everything for me, I feel like the luckiest athlete to have this guy as my friend and physio. Wayne you rock dude and you are stuck with me forever.
Double lucky, I have not one but two bios. Dennis Jackson has worked so hard since my injury to sort my imbalances out and to strengthen areas that are week; he is also very supportive and is always there for me when I need. Jaryd Rudolph, Mr Spunk keeps things fun, alive, happy and keeps my body in tip top shape mobilizing all the stiff running muscles enabling me to continue the intensity of training that I do. Den and Jaryd give me the strength I need to continue working towards my dreams and I am so grateful for them in my team.
Then comes PRIME, the high performance centre in Durban where I do ALOT of my training. It is like my my second home, my happy place and a place that my whole family is always welcome. They are amazing with my kids and this as a mother and elite athlete is something very special and so unique to Prime. This world class facility has everything you need all in one place. They have an altitude chamber, a fully equipped gym with only the best machines, an alterG anti gravity treadmill for when you are injured, ice spa’s, physio’s, bios, doctors to mention but a few.
Endurocad and Elana Meyer I will touch on in my next blog but the foundation this non profit organization is laying for SA athletes is something so special. The energy and enthusiasm shines so bright through Elana and her passion for the sport. I am very privileged to be part of the satellite group of athletes in Endurocad. The support, help, guidance and advice is invaluable and is taking SA running to the next level, back to where it should be. Huge shout out to the Endurocad team for all the do for me.
My coach is a man who does not like to be in any sort of limelight so I wont mention names but this guy just gets me, he knows what works for me and what doesn’t, what breaks me down yet what makes me strong. He has the whole package as a coach and he listens to everything I say. He has my dreams in his plans for me and I trust him to help me in this journey to get me to where I want to be. Thank you to my coach for being AWESOME and not losing faith in me over this rough period. Now LETS DO THIS THING called RAAACCCCIIIINNNNGGG!
My supplements I live by are 32Gi, their products are my survival kit. I used all of their products but my go to ones are without a doubt the chocolate recover protein shake, trumag and the gels. Mark Wolf my nutritionist, an elite athlete himself and the owner of 32Gi is another man who goes above and beyond for me, he is always a phone call away with solid advice and has on many occasions had to be a psychologist too, you make a good one Mr Wolf hehe! I value all of Marks professional advice on nutrition and 32Gi and even though he says I’m his “bad athlete” as chocolates get the better of me he is a rock star and amazing part of my team. Mark it’s the chocolates’’ fault not mine….it wasn’t me I promise!
When it comes to my sport, where would I actually be without running shoes and apparel? My all time best brand in the world has always been adidas so to be an ambassador for adidas is in itself a dream come true. The product is a cut above the rest with its attention to detail, comfort, durability and quality. I could not be happier. Tamara Friessnegg, the brand and sports marketing manager at adidas looks after me, spoils me and is always there for me when I need her.
If anyone knows a bit about me its how much I LOVE sunglasses and how I love to run in them. I’ve recently found the “perfect” performance glasses, Sziols. I have 3 gorgeous pairs: pink, blue and white but the incredible thing about them is the lenses are all interchangeable within the frames so I can mix and match. They are gorgeous and so comfortable to run in, even if you start with them on your head and put them on later, they are not fogged up. I feel so blessed to have this brand and their team behind me. Their support and encouragement drives me forward to make them proud of me one day.
This weekend I signed with a new club, I’m proud to announce I am now part of KPMG athletics club. It’s an honor to be part of a club with such enthusiasm, energy and zest for success. I am blown away by the warm welcome I received from everyone and am so excited for a long journey with KPMG and their team as we paint the country blue. Thank you Pierre Jacobs and Dana Coetzee for the opportunity to run for your club, I will strive to fly your flag high always.
(Photo credit to Chris Hitcock)
Last but not least, Brett, my husband, without going into too much detail because I could write for days. He is MY ROCK, my number one fan, my punching bag when I’m down yet he picks me up. I have no words to describe just how incredible this man of mine is but freak I’m one lucky girl to have him. Thanks Challie for your unconditional support and for dreaming my dreams with me and helping me in this journey to make them come true.
My journey in running has been like a puzzle, I’ve finally found all the pieces, fitted them together AND NOW its time to build on that foundation, layer by layer in the endeavor to go after my dreams and goals with everything I have.
“Every accomplishment starts with the decision to try”
One day as a little girl watching my mom run I wanted to try running, so I ran… and now I am a runner. If I can do it so can anyone. Be grateful for your health and mobility and go enjoy life. “Carpe Diem”