The invite dared me to enter the arena and this is how looked in the ARENA, doing things that people do in the ARENA. We will call them ARENA things for the length of this recount of my experience.


On Saturday the 10th of September, I skipped my normal morning and drove to Morningside Shopping Centre in Sandton to try something new. I am a fan of all things running but really in all honesty, I am not a fan of other exercises. I know this is rich coming from a runner BUT! running is fun and upper body workouts leave me knocked out. Over the years people have been telling me that I need to strengthen other parts of my body so that I can become a better runner. I see me attending and participating in this launch as step 1 towards me being fitter and stronger. 


Stepping through the sliding door and entering the ARENA, I knew I was signing for absolute death. I believe that if I exercise and I do not die, then it was not worth it. I saw treadmills, I saw floormats and I saw fit, muscley instructors. Even though I am a runner, I am never on the treadmill. I am the type that runs through the rain and extreme heat. I actually don't know how to run on a treadmill and this was my second time ever! 

Today was a day of learning new things and challenging myself right!?!?!?! 



After a quick introduction session by the instructors on how to get on and off the treadmill, we were off. We were on the treadmill running! decreasing the speed and then increasing the speed. Then we were increasing the degree of incline, then decreasing again. From this experience I respect the treadmill and I know how to run on one. 

Running on a treadmill is not the only thing we did though, in the 45 minute class. There were 4 rounds, we interchanged between the treadmills and the floormats. While on the floormats, we were squatting and then we were doing push ups. Then we did exercises with resistance bands, we did a lot of exercises and after 45 minutes I was ready to curl into a ball and roll away! 


I throughly enjoyed my session at ARENA WELLNESS and believe that you would too, because we do want to be better runners after all. Get on www.arenawellness.co.za and book your class. They offer different packages that will match your needs and they also employ a rewards program. The more you attend the classes, the fitter you get and earn more points.


In retrospect, this class was so intense my partner was still feeling the pain on monday. Thank you Saadia for inviting us to step into the ARENA, we stepped in and CONQUERED.  

- As told by Atlegang Mosimanekgosi 

#RunRevolution



My current situation... Sitting on campus and compiling the spring playlist, keep your eyes out for it. It will be dropping very soon... 

Speaking of Spring, I am so happy it is here finally. I think I was getting depressed from the cold and the grey days of winter.

During these last few days of winter I had the opportunity to participate in the inaugral Day of Races 5km run that was presented and hosted by CellC. Proudly sponsored by Reebok and Totalsports.  The concept of this race was different in the sense that it had different waves of runners that started their race at diiferent times. These waves were themed 


Wave 1: Pretty fast, was for women

Wave 2: Pace Makers, was runners 50 years and above

Wave 3: Sole mates, pairs 

Wave 4: Young, Fast & Free, was for runners under the age of 18 

Wave 5: Anything Goes, the open category for all the runners that did not fit into the other categories 

Wave 6: Elite, This was by invite only and open only to elite runners

I along with my partner, mother, aunt, cousin and everybody I know participated in the open category. On my part I am not sure if this was a wise decision though. I say this because our wave started at 12pm and I had went hiking the day before(You would know this if you followed me on snapchat). 


It was so hot, I decided that I was not going to run. Instead, I walked the entire 5km and live tweeted my feelings as I was doing so. I am not a walker, I feel like a pussy when I am running and I take walk break. Largely because geting the running rhythm back, for me is hard after walking. On this day, the 28th of August I walked, I walked so hard I concluded that I need to learn to walk fast. 


My mother on the other hand, decided to run. Its like we swapped roles. She kept up with Shahieda for a bit and ran her own race after that. She even got to the finish line before me. The cape town edition happened this part sunday on the 11th, I wish I could have done that one as well but I am not a cape town resident. 


Looking forward to doing this race next year again, I might be with the elites... 

We never know what life has in store for us. 

PS! I tend to live snap races that I do, so follow me on snapchat: Thatindierunner and dont miss my race coverage.

x Atli 

#RunRevolution
On who you are…


I’m a Xhosa girl from the Eastern Cape,currently working for the Department of Justice as an IT Project Manager. I call myself the struggling fitness fanatic. I love all things fitness related but I also love food and whiskey LOL. 

On running…

I started running in 2010 to lose weight. I think most ladies take up running for this reason ;-) I have since done a few marathons but have not done the Big C yet. I got into an accident while training for it, so I am basically starting my running from scratch now. More on that later… 


On your First Run...

My first run was hilarious. There was more walking than running and I didn’t even have a running watch to measure how far I was going. I ran this route for like a month and I was convinced it was at least 5kms. When I eventually got a watch and measured, turns out it was only 2km!!!

On running culture…

South African running culture is the best! Runners are friendly and so welcoming. Even if running in a new, unfamiliar city you are bound to make friends! Running has made being healthy fashionable! 

On gadgets…

I’m not big on gadgets. A running watch is all I need. I can’t run with music because I use my runs as time to unclutter my head. Wait, do running shoes and clothes count as gadgets? Because I’m big on that! I have way too much running gear.
On injury…

I got hit by a car in 2011, while out running! Oh the irony. I broke both bones in my left leg. I had pins in my ankle and knee and a metal plate for 4 years. I tried getting back to running during that 4 years but it was just too painful and frustrating. I gave running a break and got into weight training. I loved it! But running was always my first love. So I had the metals removed February 2016 and I have been slowly trying to run again. There’s still discomfort here and there but I think I’m on the mend. I am back with a Biokineticist for leg strengthening sessions. 

On achievements…

Running achievements? Nothing to write home about yet. But watch this space! 

On future goals…

Mhhhh let’s see. I’d love to run long distances again. Immediate future goal is to finish a marathon pain free and then maybe Comrades 2018?? *gulps* 

On your social media…

I’m addicted to Facebook and Instagram! My data bill can testify to this! Hahaha! But in my defence I use social media to promote healthy eating and exercise. Also to spread awareness around Endometriosis disease, which I suffer from. 


On Pink…

I’m a typical girly girl. I love everything pink. In fact I must make extra effort to stay away from anything pink when I’m out shopping. 

On Pain…

I’ve had my share of pain (running and Endometriosis related) to last me a lifetime. Can the universe kindly give me a break now? 


On women’s running…

Women should run! It’s an effective way to keep healthy, make new friends and to even meet a potential future partner ;-) A tight butt and sexy legs are just a bonus. But on a serious note, we need more black female top runners. I was watching Comrades and I kept asking where our African sisters are? Not taking away anything from Fikile Mbuthuma who came 8th in this year’s race. 

On the Past you…

Start running, you’ll love it! 

When I die…

I hope to have inspired a few people to change their lives for the better through exercise and healthy eating. Also I’d like to be buried in gym clothes, they are so comfy! 
#RunRevolution

 


On who you are…


I'm a journalist who loves running. When I'm not interviewing movie stars or musicians, I'm running!. I am From South Africa, I currently live in NYC where I run with BlackRoses NYC, and take part in a bunch of other social runs too. I'm Greek as well, which explains the surname.

On Running…


I was one of those kids who hated running growing up. Strongly hated it. But when I saw SA photojournalist Joao Silva complete the NYC Marathon for the Wounded Warriors, in the handcycle division, a year after he lost both his legs stepping on a landmine in Afghanistan, I became inspired to run it for charity too. All I wanted was to finish the marathon, never mind anything about how long it would take. 
Through training for the marathon, I came to rely on the routine that running provided for me, as a freelance journalist who works funny hours and travels a lot. I also grew to love the outlet it became for a lot of my worries and anxieties - again, about living in a new city, far from family and best friends, figuring out how to create a life for myself. I also learned that I am not as slow as I thought I was and have found great pride in the races I've run so far.


On your First Run...

Very first run I remember is a school race, I must have been about 6 years old, and I was going to win it but the girl next to me tripped me. The teacher didn't see it or believe it, so I think that's where the dislike began!


On Street culture…


I'm from South Africa so the street culture there is an amazing mix of influences. But living in NYC means I get to walk - and run - city streets a lot and so I'm constantly fascinated by how people express themselves, which has made me become more comfortable in how I dress too. 

Photo Credit: Stefania Curto
On Running culture…


I love it! It's opened a world of friendships, travel, inspiration, motivation, positivity and just so much love. I hold very dear the fact that I can be travelling to a city for work and reach out to run with a crew there. Bridge the Gap is real and alive and it moves me!
On gadgets…


A year ago, I finally gave in and got a Garmin, but I'm still pretty bad with numbers so I just use it to guide me where I can. I sync to 3 different apps (Garmin, Strava, Nike) and sometimes they all give me different info so who knows which one is right. Nothing beats running on feel!

On injury…

Injuries are annoying and frustrating and irritating and so many other things, but they also are a chance to slow down and reconnect with the way you train and the care and attention you provide to your body.

On achievements…

I've run 4 marathons so far, and my best time is 3:35:39. I missed qualifying for Boston by 39 seconds in Paris last year. 

On future goals…

To qualify for Boston, to run the world majors, and to continue to raise money and awareness for charity through running. And  to reach an audience of like-minded people  with my You Tube video series, The Rundown -- I aim to inspire and motivate a love of fitness through culture and entertainment. Check it out: YouTube.com/NadiaNeophytou

On your social media…

Social media is a skill that I don't think many people have mastered. For all its faults though, it has helped me meet some amazing people around the world and stay in touch with their lives.

On Pink…

Pink is always fabulous!


On Pain…

Pain is part of growth and growing is what we are here to do, right?

On women’s running...

The first time I ever ran 20 miles (from the Upper East Side to Coney Island, I realized that my legs were capable of more than just what they looked like; they could carry me all that way, safe and sound. It was a game-changing moment - and that's why I'd tell women to run! Or do any other sport that makes them feel invincible. 

Photo Credit: Stefania Curto

On your past self...

You got this! You may not appreciate it now, but when you're ready, running has so much to teach you. 


When I die…

I want to be happy in the knowledge that I lived the best life I could and inspired others to do so as well! 

#RunRevolution

On who you are…

I am an introverted Art Director and closet singer of Zambian and South African descent. I am a sneaker lover and scarf collector with aspirations of learning how to speak Chichewa. I loves dogs because I don’t like cats. 
 
 

On running…
 
Running has been my greatest teacher-arming me with resilience and discipline in many factors of my life. I’m not a “talker” so my runs are my therapy sessions. The only time where I really get to let loose and clear my mind. 

On your First Run...

I can’t really remember my first run, I’d have to search my emails for this one. I do however believe that I had more than one first runs. The year that me and my friends decided to become official road runners, we registered for every single race that was not too far from where we lived and we ran all of them. Because we were “first time” runners, every run came with a very painful but appreciated lesson (Still does but we’re “experienced” now.). We couldn’t believe how much support you get from strangers while running and that for me is the beauty of this culture. 
 
 

On Street culture…

Street culture is a beautiful language that everyone understands (Well at least everyone I know), whether spoken or unspoken, it’s a culture that anyone can be a part of. What makes it so interesting is that it consists of so many different characters but there’s always that one thing that connects everyone. It’s a very beautiful and colourful culture! 

On running culture…

This is a beautiful culture that we see grow bigger every single day. My mom always laughs at me when I tell her that I wish I could drive around with a louder because the feeling I get every time I see someone running on the road is so overwhelming. I feel like a mother watching her child run towards the finish line and I just want to shout “Keep going! Don’t give up! You’re almost there!”
 
On gadgets…

I’m not big on gadgets, I guess it’s because I’m not big on spending. Gadgets are expensive! The only two gadgets I need in my life are my laptop for work and my phone for communicating and for running and training. 

On injury…

I haven’t experienced a serious running injury or any injury that has prevented me from running or training. I’ve seen people stay away for as long as a year from pulling something while running so I always try and listen to what my body communicates.
 

On achievements…

There’s no greater feeling than when you open your running app to read notifications and you hear “You just ran your fastest 5km at a pace of…” To think that at some point in my life, I couldn’t even imagine running 5km in 30min or less is unbelievable. This is still by far the greatest running achievement for. 

On future goals…

21km in 1H30? Absolutely! I cannot wait for that day! A lot of people always ask whether I see myself running a full marathon and my answer is always No! I’m not there yet, let me run fastest 21km first then we’ll start talking about running 42km. 
 
 

On your social media…

Its crazy how a simple post about how hectic or how great your running or training session was, inspires and motivates so many people. I use my social media for general things; selfies, family, friends, events and every once in a while I post about my running and training sessions. Lately, every picture I post about running or training leads to a few private messages of people asking me how they can join me or even a few tips of how they can squeeze in exercise sessions at home after a long day at work. That, for me, is way better than any number of like! 
 
 

On Pink…

The singer, any day! The colour, no thank you! I’m yet to find the perfect explanation of why this colour is associated with women. 
 

“The pink is the colour of universal love of oneself and of others. Pink represents friendship, affection, harmony, inner peace and approachability.” Does this not sound like someone whispering sweet nothings in your ear to get you to fall in love with them? 

On Pain…

I used to hate the saying; “No pain, no gain” until I started running. Only after you’ve ran a race that has a steep that has made you feel every single muscle in your legs, will you start appreciating the hectic hill training sessions that you get at run club. Pain is temporary; it’s what comes after that makes it all worth it! 

On women’s running…

For kick ass legs, an amazing booty and killer abs! The one thing that women really appreciate in their lives is having a community that loves and supports us in everything that we do. Through running, I’ve experienced everything of that and more! 

On the Past you…

Why did you stop? What were you doing? No answer will ever be good enough! Look at us now gurl! 

When I die…

I will have lived my life in full and fulfilled my purpose! 
 
#RunRevolution


On You...
 
10 facts about me:
1. A 28 year old daughter, little sister and single
2. Living in Aarhus - “The City of Smiles” (second largest city in Denmark and the world’s smallest big city)
3. Have lived in Bangkok, Berlin and Hamburg
4. Have a MA degree in International Business Communication
5. Working with communication and innovation within the public healthcare sector
6. Speak Danish, English, German and Spanish, but can say “cheers” in 8 languages
7. Member of the running community RUNAAR (Run for Aarhus) #RUNAAR
8. Awarded “Smile of the year” among fellow runners
9. Adidas Ambassador
10. Sneeze when looking at the sun 
 
On Running...
 
I started running when I was about 16 years old to keep staying active after quitting handball. But to me running became much more than just a way of being physical active, it was also a way to clear my mind, to recharge and to strengthen my mental health. It still is. Furthermore, I enjoy both exploring nature and different cities and countries wearing my running shoes. For many years I ran by my own but in the last years I’ve discovered the surplus energy that the company of others can give you. 
 
 
On Your First Run...

I don’t remember my first run. But I know that I have been addicted to running ever since. 
 
On Street Culture...
 
Even though Aarhus is a small city compared to the world’s big metropoles it still has a lot to offer, including street sports such as non-commercial and non-professional running communities. These growing running communities have added an extra dimension to running that is otherwise often associated with team sports: the social dimension. 
 
 
On Running Culture...
 
I’ve noticed a huge development during the last 12 years since I started running myself. Running as a primarily one man sport is now much more characterized as a social sport, especially because of the many urban running communities that arise mainly in the big cities. Several times per week I take part myself in the running community RUNAAR (Run for Aarhus). More than 100 people across gender, age, religion and ethnicity gather to run together in the streets of Aarhus. When we don't run, we cheer; hang out together and party #crewlove
The social dimension of the urban running communities can very well be combined with personal goals, effort and development at your very own level. You're independent and yet a part of a community, which is driven by a common passion for running and an interest in meeting and getting to know other people.
 
 

On Gadgets...
 
I always wear my running watch, and I can’t go for a run anymore without tracking it. I like to see my performances graphically visualized and to be reminded of the little improvements and victories. But other than that I prefer as few gadgets as possible. I don’t even listen to music while running.
 
On Injury...
 
Running is such an important influencer on both my physical and mental health as well as my social life. Not being able to run because of an injury would therefore be a huge loss. The other way around those important factors would make it possible to fight even harder to get back in the game instead of giving up. 

On Achievements...
 
The second you realize that you have reached your goal it is a big relief. But to me reaching a PB will never be more important than maintaining the joy and passion for running. That said, I do get very motivated by future goals. In May this year I had my first marathon experience. The heat was terrible, but I’m very aware of the strengths and limits of my own body. Thus a lot of water, my competitive mind and the cheering of friends & family got me through the Copenhagen Marathon. It was a great experience! 
 
 
 
On Future Goals... 
 
I’ve lived in Berlin and would love to run another marathon and other circumstances and through the streets of the German capital. But the most important goal is to maintain my passion for running. 
 
On Your Social Media... 
 
Social media is a fantastic opportunity to share experiences and memories trough pictures, facts and descriptions with people who share the same passion for running, both close friends and people from around the world. Among other things I share my running experiences on Instagram @kirstineskytt
 
 
On Pink...
 
Pink is a strong color both visually and symbolically. I have a special pink running T-shirt that I wore for a run to support the fight against breast cancer. 
 
On Pain...
 
Pain is a natural part of running. But it is meant in a good way. When you challenge yourself and push yourself to the psychical and mental limit you feel the pain. But it is temporary and it will make you stronger.
 
 On Women's Running...
 
You get to know yourself better; your body as well as your mind - strengths and weaknesses. You’ll stay healthy, can eat more and you'll live longer in a hotter body :-)
 
 
On the Past You...
 
 “I bet you can't run 5k in a month". That would get me going.
 
When I die...
 
I hope my (running) spirit will carry on...

#RunRevolution

On who you are…

I am a 27 year old teacher, wife, Yorkie mom and only recently a runner. I do all things in life with passion and enthusiasm. My determined, outgoing nature is what got me into running. I was never the fitness type, and hated going to the gym. From a young age my hobby was dancing but never in my wildest dreams did I ever think that I would trade my tap dancing shoes for running shoes. Running has shown me a part of myself that I didn’t even know existed and taught me that I am capable of so much more than I ever imagined.

On Running…

Balancing my fitness regime, marriage, family, career and my sanity can definitely be difficult at times, which is why I am so grateful that I have discovered my inner runner. Running has become my outlet, hobby and my much-needed “me” time. It still feels strange to call myself a runner, but it has now become part of who I am. I plan and organize my weeks ahead to make sure that I run at least 4 times a week. I have even incorporated my passion for teaching with running by starting cross-country at our school. Running is a great activity to help kids build endurance, confidence, stronger self-esteem and I have seen first-hand the positive impact that it has on their academics. 
 
 
On your First Run...

I was reading our local newspaper when I saw an article on a race being held at a school in Klerksdorp. I wanted to make a change in my life regarding to fitness and being healthier, so what better way to start! On 23 October 2015, I competed in my first ever race, it was a 5km road race held at a local school in Klerksdorp. My hubby came along for moral support which I was very grateful for, I was terribly nervous! I finished the race and was extremely proud, the wooden medal has a special place on my wall. That 5km race was only the beginning, I was hooked! 
 
 
 
On running culture…

Running is an incredible sport that can be done by anyone, anywhere, anytime. It is one of the best types of exercises and has numerous health and fitness benefits. Running is a great way of meeting new people and seeing new places. There is no better feeling than the pre-race vibe you get, the excitement, adrenaline and nervous energy. Running culture for me is being part of a group of people just as crazy as you are, willing to encourage you when you need it and being part of a community.
 
On gadgets…

I don’t take running too seriously so I don’t have expensive gadgets or gear. I did however after accomplishing my goal of 5km’s under 25 minutes, I rewarded myself with a Garmin Forerunner 25 which I never go without. It is very handy when you want to check your pace, distance and calories (to know how many chocolate brownies you can have afterwards!) 
 
 
 
On injury…

Knock on wood, I luckily have never suffered a serious injury after or during running. I make sure I warm up appropriately and always have my Arnica ice cooling gel or spray at hand for sore muscles. I do tend to get plantar fasciitis especially after a week of heavy training, but I focus on doing my stretching first thing in the morning and after training. 
 
On achievements…

Ever since my first 5km road race I have done numerous races and local Parkruns. I even competed in my first rookie warrior race! Recently I competed in my first 18km trail run with a time of 1:47:27. It was a tough off-road trail and I had to dig deep. I am proud of every race and achievement and I am working hard to fill up my medal hanger with even more medals. 
 
\
 On future goals…

I’m currently training to compete in next year’s Two Oceans Half Marathon! It’s a dream of mine to one day complete a full marathon, but you have to start somewhere. I am very proud of my progress in only a years’ time so who knows where I might be competing in the years to come! 
 
 
On your social media…

Social media is my way of sharing my proud running moments with family and friends. I am on Facebook (Tina-Marie Nelson) and Instagram (@tinksnelson). I also use social media to connect with other runners from all around the world, exchanging tips ideas and advice.
On Pink…

The colour of my favourite running shoes!

On Pain…

The pain you feel today will be the strength you feel tomorrow – Ritu Ghatourney 
 
On women’s running…

Running is not just a men’s sport! The biggest reason why women don’t run is because they feel that they are unable to - when in reality not only can we keep up with the boys but beat them! Running has so many benefits for us women, not even to talk about the weight-loss and health benefits. There is no better stress reliever than putting on your running shoes and going for a run to clear your mind. Plus it is cheaper than therapy! 
 
 
On the Past you…

Don’t worry how you look while you’re running. You will not look like a gazelle running. Just run despite of that! 
 
When I die…

I want my tombstone to say “She lived fully”.
 
#RunRevolution