Now, 11 Comrades and 13 Two Oceans Ultra finishes later, my body is not only different, but my mind is changed too, and I know how to work to finish something that I started, something that I wasn’t really good with at school.
When people ask me why I run, I tell them it’s because it makes me feel good, physically and emotionally, and there’s that proverbial high that comes from running – and finishing. It can be very social, and solitary and introspective too, and it’s amazing to work towards a goal, and have it fulfilled.
When I had my first child in 2009, I was determined to get back on the road soon after the birth, and eight weeks after my C-section, I was running a 32km. Eight months later, in a quest to not miss another year in trying to achieve my green number (a permanent number that’s awarded after running 10 Comrades) I ran Comrades. I used to train in the mornings, and then try to balance my days with work and spending time with my baby. It was fairly manageable to juggle everything because I wanted to run so badly and because I was so motivated to not put a brake on my running life and goals.
Seven years later, with a new baby, the return to running has been a lot slower, and I’m “only” running half marathons.
My recovery from the birth was slower too, and my priorities have shifted a bit, as I want to spend more time with my family and without the pressure of training and long-distance races. I plan to run a marathon by the end of the year and I suspect I’ll be aiming for the start lines of Two Oceans and Comrades next year. I can’t imagine watching the races on TV for another year – it’s hard to be on the sidelines, plus I’d love to get my double green and double blue numbers for Comrades and Two Oceans respectively.
Keep Going Tanya!