We receive many great letters from our readers and love sharing them with you. To send us a letter, go to www.modernathlete.co.za and click on the Become a Contributor link. (Note that some letters have been shortened due to space limitations.)
Races and Dates
I’m in the North West Province and would like to know where I could get info (dates) for races here and in Gauteng for the next few months. We are trying to get our kids fit and we got a 5km run programme on SuperSport’s Let’s Play website. Now I’m all excited. I’ve never run before! I would love to hear from you. I really like and enjoy your publication. Good fuel for me. – JOANNE, VIA E-MAIL
Ed’s Reply: We love hearing about new converts to running, because it is hands down the best way to get fit and maintain good health. Even better is hearing about parents and teachers motivating kids to exercise, because child obesity is a major concern in these times. What with junk food, video games, cell phones and the general lack of safety at sports and recreational areas, kids just aren’t as sporty and active as in previous years, so getting them active is important to address the obesity problem.
As for race dates, you will find a listing of race dates according to province in every edition of this mag, plus you can visit our website at www.modernathlete.co.za for more details on each of these events.
Another Golden Oldie
I picked up a copy of your October magazine and read with interest your cover article on the Timeless Warriors. Seems to me you could follow this article up with another timeless warrior who was a very popular figure at Gauteng road races. My dad, Vic Keeling, ran for the Golden Reef Road Running Club from its inception in 1978 until March this year, when he moved to a retirement village in the Cape, and he has now joined the Fish Hoek Athletic Club. Coincidentally, you have a picture of him on page 40 of that edition, with the club review article on RAC.
He started running at age 47 in 1975 and is still going at the age of 81, albeit he has slowed down. During his years of running he meticulously kept a handwritten running race diary. During this 33-year period he ran and officially finished 1 018 road races, which included 241 races of a marathon distance and more. He ran and finished 17 hundred-milers – seven Washies and ten Golden Reefs – together with 17 Comrades. His record does not include races he could not finish within the time limit, which included five Comrades. His last race in Gauteng was his 32nd RAC 32km in November 2008, which he ran at 80 years old.
Looking through the spreadsheet table and graphs of his races makes for fascinating reading for anybody who enjoys numbers. For example, in 1994, aged 66, he ran 52 races. The 1 018 races amounted to 29 097km. He also finished well over 1 000 time trials with the club, after which he stopped counting. – BRIAN KEELING, JOHANNESBURG
Ed’s Reply: We’re always looking for stories about great South African runners, be they elites or back of the pack runners, so please send us your article and pics. All readers are invited to send us stories or ideas for features or interviews – go to www.modernathlete.co.za and click on the Become a Contributor link.
Thanks for the great mag. It brings a breath of fresh air to the running community. I hope it goes from strength to strength (and a great editor too). – SIKHUMBUZO MADI, DIEPKLOOF ATHLETIC CLUB, SOWETO
Ed’s Reply: Thanks for the kind words, makes putting this mag together all the more enjoyable! (And no, I didn’t pay Sikhumbuzo for the last part of that message… but the cheque’s in the mail anyway.)
Slowly Does It
I must commend you on your outstanding magazine. I would like to tell you how much I enjoy all your articles – they are truly motivating! I always read about the great athletes that you write about and take inspiration from them as a beginner runner, but I am so slow that the walkers overtake me at the Run/Walk for Life club! – ISABEL BEKKER, JOHANNESBURG
Ed’s Reply: Isabel was featured in our January edition, in the My 2010 Dream feature, and we just want to tell her that it doesn’t matter who overtakes her or who goes faster than her; what matters is that she is still getting out there and running. Each of us has our own goals and targets as a modern athlete, and getting there is what counts, not how fast we get there.
I must say your magazine really adds value to running in general – it is awesome. – STEPHEN LIGHT, REGENT HARRIERS CO-ORDINATOR, DURBAN
I’m currently reading your latest magazine. It is excellent! – KAREN ERVENS, CAPE TOWN
I am a huge fan of your magazine, so it’s a big honour to be interviewed for it. – LIEZEL VAN DER WESTHUIZEN, TV AND RADIO PRESENTER, JOHANNESBURG
Ed’s Reply: We love the positive energy that our mag is generating in the running community, so keep the feedback coming, folks. But also let us know if you have ideas for making the mag even better – we’re always open to requests and suggestions.