My Comrades: Modern Athlete Readers share their 2010 Experience

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Comrades 2010 was a highlight for many and a disappointment for others. Whether you won a silver medal or finished a second before the 12-hour cut off, one thing bound all of us on the 89.2km long road to Durban… and that was the incredible and unique experience of finishing one of the most gruelling ultra races in the world. Six runners share their race day experiences with Modern Athlete.


MARISA OOSTHUIZEN, IRENE ROAD
RUNNING CLUB
Race Time: 10:35


Just to get to Comrades 2010 was a nightmare. Every year I promise myself that I am going to train differently. Little did I know that 2010 was a year where I was going to be forced to train differently.


In February I started training with Rinaldi Botes, a novice. At the Vaal Marathon I ran 4:13. I thought I had it all under control. A week before Om die Dam I had the same problem as in 2007, a stress fracture! After a lot of tears and prayers I went to the gym, armed with some swimming gear. I started with 30 minutes on the Orbitrek and 30 minutes in the pool. At lunch time I was back for another hour in
the pool.


My goal was to be fit enough to run Loskop 50km. I gradually built up to more hours in the pool. One thing about this training was that it made me mentally strong and built endurance.


I eventually finished Loskop in 5:30. I changed my swimming routine; I put running shoes on and ran in the pool! This helped so much that two weeks before Comrades I was on the road for four hours without any problems. My heart rate at rest was 38 beats per minute and I lost 6kg!


I started Comrades on a positive note. I tried to stay with friends, Pierre, Marisia Koch and Billy up to halfway. A big thank you to you guys. I felt good all the way and recited the following: “His name is Great. He will never leave me.” I got to the finish line in 10:35.


A big thank you to my
husband, Danie!

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