Challenge Accepted


Media personality, presenter, model and freelance writer Stacey Holland likes to challenge herself – from CrossFit and Impi to completing her first Momentum 947 Cycle Challenge. Now, she’s prepping to take on her first triathlon in 2015, while juggling her training in an unusual schedule.

MA: Is it difficult fitting in training?
Stacey: Diarising training helps and it’s about decision-making. One business session I attended explained life like a juggling act: You juggle glass balls and plastic balls. Glass balls break when they fall. Plastic balls bounce. You have to know what is glass and plastic. Work is a plastic ball, your children would be glass. If your kid is sick, that would be your main priority. People think health and fitness is a plastic ball, but it’s not! The benefit I have is that my time is flexible. I have to fit in auditions, writing for Longevity and castings, and I work around my diary.

MA: Then that session is unmovable?
Stacey: Yes, my agent would call me and ask me if I can go to a casting and sometimes it would fall on my gym time. You can hear him thinking, ‘Hello! This is your livelihood we’re talking about!’ but the industry revolves around us looking good. It was my escape when my mom was diagnosed with colon cancer last year and she underwent chemo. In a situation like that, you think ‘okay, cancel gym,’ but I needed it. A good cry is something, but you need an outlet. For most, gym is the first thing you reschedule when times are tough.

MA: You completed your first Momentum 947 Cycle Challenge last year. How did that journey begin?
Stacey: Pure Nutrition were looking for 10 novices and approached me. We received bikes that we eventually handed over to the Diepsloot Mountain Bike Academy for youngsters who want to pursue the sport. I loved that I’d be giving back, especially after sitting in a saddle for five hours, cycling a good 100km. I had never pushed myself to that extent before. On race day, I found out I was stronger and my strength work helped me up the hills, and I felt fresh until the 70km marker, eventually finishing in four hours 30 minutes.

MA: And it’s progressed to taking on your first triathlon this year…
Stacey: Discovery approached me because they saw I was cycling the 947. I will have to get used to being in the pool again and I’ll have to work on my road running. After doing Impi, I found out I love trails more. After my triathlon, I’d like to look at the off-road stuff because I prefer events where I can test my speed and agility. Every challenge leads to something else…

MA: Do you use your media work to find opportunities to test your fitness?
Stacey: Definitely! I write reports in Longevity covering topics like ‘when is the best time to train?’ or ‘how can martial arts help you?’ It’s cool because I have to research and be on top of things. I did a six-week cycle article before the 947 and it helped me prep. I use my own experiences and trying stuff gives me something to write about!

MA: Your husband is a pro golfer. Is it easier to keep fit having a partner who lives a healthy lifestyle?
Stacey: Warren rode the 947 with me and we shared that experience. He understands my desire to perform even though golf is so different and technical. He just thinks I always attract these crazy invitations!

MA: What advice would you give people who say they don’t have time to exercise?
Stacey: I always think I don’t have time to read. You have to find the ‘why’ and make time. Novels fuel my creativity, so I make time for it before bed. My bath is time for magazines. When I’m travelling, I read self-help stuff. Dr Miles Munroe said that when the purpose of something is not known, abuse is inevitable. When you know why you need to be healthy, it’s easy. If you don’t, you make excuses! You need to find your motivation.