Of 2018: Dreaming of Races and Places to Come

So before we could blink, February was upon us. I have barely published a reflection of the previous year’s running highs or it was almost time to do it again! And that before there was chance to share something about what we have up our sleeves for the next 10 months or so.

Training-wise the year kicked off with a bit of a setback for me.  “Plica syndrome” appears to be a not-so-uncommon result of a hard blow to the knee-cap, like the one I sustained during a hard fall before Christmas. Commonmaybe , but a very frustrating condition that can seriously mess up your running and training plans, especially if it goes un-diagnosed. Very lucky for me I have access to one of the best physio’s in the country. And so after two sessions with Ruan mid-January I was back on the trails. And not a moment too soon, since our first upcoming race is in no less than eight weeks!

While contemplating the year ahead of setting goals and what not, I was seriously toying with the idea of going for some speedy PR’s in the shorter distances like 5k and 10k’s. Especially in the light of turning the page to the big Four-Oh’s later this year… But the more I thought of it, the less motivated I became. See, in recent years of discovering and defining a love for trails and trail races, my need for speed has left the building altogether. Which doesn’t so much relate to a decision to become a slacker, but more to an apprehension of the idea of slapping it out on a flat, paved road with thousands of other runners. It really doesn’t appeal to any part of me (anymore), no matter how hard I try.

So instead, here is a short outlook on our main goal races for 2018. Which, I may add, I am not planning to win. Although I really hope that becoming a Veteran will AT THE VERY LEAST help push me up in the age category rankings. Some dignification, yes?

At the end of March we plan to travel to the veeeeery southern tip of South America for the fourth edition of the Ultra Fiord trail ultras. I am entered for the 50K while Nico will be lining up for the 70K some two days later. The races take place in Chilean Patagonia, in the vicinity of breathtaking Torres del Paine National Park. And yes, you observed is correctly. For the first time the Hubster declined a mountain summit in favour of a (very long) day on some magnificent trails! Lovvvve!

Best we take our walking poles then…
Glaciers and fjords abound!
Places inaccessible by anything other than feet.

For our second biggie this year we are planning to travel to Morocco. One of my absolute dream destinations for years! The race is the Ultra Trail Atlas Toubkal (UTAT) and I am entered for the 42 km. With the trail traversing a section of the Atlas mountains, it is not flat (at all). Similar to the Otter African Trail Run, this baby also entails a 2600 m vertical gain.  Luckily it’s still far off!

Simply gorgeous.
The scenery reminds so much of our local Lady Brandberg.
At least there seems to be a trail?

Some few years ago we almost made a trip to Morocco while I was pregnant with V in 2012, but since one of the main draw cards for me is THE CUISINE, I asked Hubby that we postpone to a time when I am free to eat and enjoy everything without reservation or fear of food poisoning. During this planned trip Nico will be doing some mountaineering in the Atlas Mountains too. This will round off his quest for summiting all the major peaks in Africa, for which he too is very excited.

Dreaming of Morocco…
The colours, the smells, the flavours, I can’t wait!
Moroccan architecture reminds very much of arabic Stone Town, Zanzibar.

In closure I want to share some quotes that rings true and needs affirmation early on in the year (I won’t say beginning, it’s Feb already!)

Too many of us are not living our dreams because we are living our fears.” -Les Brown


The biggest adventure you can take is to live the life of your dreams.” -Oprah Winfrey

How, you may ask, does Oprah propose one lives one’s dream? Simple.

Doing the best at this moment puts you in the best place for the next moment.” -Oprah Winfrey

6 thoughts on “Of 2018: Dreaming of Races and Places to Come

  • 2 February 2018 at 8:17 am

    Sjoe, impressive! Mag elke race mooi en goed wees.

  • 2 February 2018 at 8:24 am

    Dankie Moeder. Die opwinding gaan ook baie oor die uitsien en voorberei! Xxxxx

  • 2 February 2018 at 9:36 am

    Mos, Sêrie! Xxxx

  • 2 February 2018 at 11:34 pm

    Joe, dit klink fantasties en opwindend. Jammer van jou knie, maar dankie tog vir die fisio. En met elke reis is die seuns ouer en neem meer in. Net nog die “reis” noorde toe van 3 Maart. Erg kort en veeeeeer. Fantasties om mens se drome te kan uitleef. Vandag gehoor: Liefde is ‘n werkwoord!!! xxxxxxxxx

  • 3 February 2018 at 5:50 am

    Slaan Ma nou die spyker op die kop met daai “liefde-is-‘n-werkwoord”! Pragtig en so waar, en presies wat julle uitstraal! Ons sien baie uit na die kort 3 Maart trip (darem leeeekker kuier 2 Maart!) Xxxxx

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