Mixed bag update: nerds in the Kruger, DualX, DC, G-Form & mum

I haven’t been too good at blogging lately. So here’s what I’ve been up to:

Training has been on and off in preparation for Enduroman next Saturday (more on this race later in the week). I put in two good blocks of training, each followed by 10 days of illness which really put a damper on things. Oh, yes, and I’ve been super busy with my masters and all sorts of others things that tend to demand attention. I had to move back home to Rondebosch after I was unable to find accommodation in Stellenbosch for September. I am checking gumtree everyday for accommodation and my fingers are never uncrossed. I love being in Stellenbosch and find it so much easier to work and train from there so I really hope to be back soon!

Nerds: Stellenbosch University invited all their masters students to attend the fifth International Mathematics in Finance conference in the Kruger Park for a week in August. This was quite an eye-opener! I have never in my life been surrounded by such amazing brains and nerds. We were lectured by leaders in their fields from the Deutsche Bank and the Bank of England from 9:00 until 17:00 each day. Luckily we were able to escape and do some driving in the park and I was able to do some running. There is not much option for running in Skukuza camp and this is what a 9km run looked like:

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DualX: This is a series of offroad duathlons held in Gauteng (unfortunately none in the Western Cape – hope this changes soon!). I was super keen to race one and was stoked to find out that one was being held on the Saturday before I was supposed to fly to Joburg. So I quickly changed my flight and got my entry in. Anyway, the race ended disastrously in a massive mechanical just 5km into the bike leg. My bike came to immediate stop as the front and rear derailleurs were ripped to shreds and 5 spokes broke. I still have no idea why this happened and was absolutely gutted. I have never not finished a race before. It was a long, sad walk back to transition. My results:

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Double Century: I was super stoked to be asked to join the Velocity Ladies Double Century team. This is a 202km team race where teams start with 12 riders and have to finish with at least 6 riders. The Velocity ladies won the race last year and broke the ladies record by 9 minutes or something (no pressure). We had an absolutely awesome training camp at the Breede River last weekend which was characterised by lots of cycling, food, waterskiing, boat trips to the local pub for pizza, quad biking and more food. We range in age from me being the youngest at age 24 (25 next week!!!!) up to age 47 and despite the age differences we make up such a cool team and all had a blast!

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G-Form: who would have thought that one could pick up a sponsor by being supremely bad at MTBing? Seems that I did! Some friends wonder why I keep at the mountain biking when I fall so often. The reason is that I absolutely love it. But I really am racking up quite a few scars and my parents are getting concerned that the reverse is not true – guys don’t dig scars.

G-Form is the coolest thing since like forever! They make knee pads, elbow pads, crash shorts and vests. It is super soft and flexible and you totally forget that you’re wearing it. I do 3-4hr MTB rides and they don’t bother me in the slightest. The basic construction is like lycra knee and arm warmers with pads on the critical areas. The pad material is soft, but immediately hardens on impact. Such kickass technology!

The reason that I am using it is that it gives me confidence on the trails. I know that if I fall I am not going to do any damage and you’ll know if you have taken a nasty crash that you would have done anything not to endure the resulting damage!

So here’s to many more blood-free hours on the trails!

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You can buy it online at http://www.g-form.co.za or at your local bike shop.

They also make protective covers for all your electronics, so that you can drop your iPad from space. And stuff. How cool!

Mum: I just have to boast. My mother, the Vivinator, won the silver medal at the Ironman 70.3 World Champs in the 50-54 age category in Canada two weeks ago. She was overtaken in the last kilometer to miss the gold medal by just 21sec. She had absolutely no idea where she was lying while the lady chasing her had family there who were able to keep her updated on where my mom was. Anyway, Viv was absolutely stoked to win a medal as she didn’t even imagine she’d be on the podium after very little run training before the race due to a nasty, persistent hamstring injury. What a champ!

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Oh, and she was also awarded the International Triathlon Union Women’s Award of Excellence for 2014. Each country gets to nominate 4 candidates and Viv was selected out of everyone! Massive achievement proving that hard work (sometimes) does not go unrecognised. Soooo proud!

Next up: Enduroman | 27 September | 08:00 | Berg River Dam | Franschhoek

And my thesis… of course

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