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    Maximise Your Runs With These Tips From The Pros

    Running, while being a go-to workout for scores of women, can be a tough sport to tackle. There’s the question of how to plan your runs when training for a race, how to cross-train so your runs are faster, and how to score new PBs. But even with all of that, motivation can flag, leading to less running. Since that’s the least optimal scenario, we chatted to the pros on how to maximise your runs.

    And to make it worth your while, why not join #Run4Avos? You don’t have to run for a bag of the fruit – it’s all about getting amped about your runs again. Through the Nedbank Running Club’s #Run4Avos campaign, you can take part in weekly challenges and up your game. Join #Run4Avos on Strava and join in on the fun.

    Here, tips from the pros on how to maximise your runs.

    Meet the experts

    Adele Broodryk is a professional runner and 2023 Comrades Marathon second-place finisher.

    Fikile Mbuthuma is a seasoned Comrades Marathon competitor, having completed a whopping 19 races.

    Get motivated

    Get your kit

    While shopping for new fitness clothes is truly a great way to feel motivated to run again, you don’t have to. “Every evening before a training session, I put all my training clothes out. So when I wake I can just put it on and get going,” says Adele Broodryk, professional runner and 2023 Comrades Marathon second-place finisher.

    Plan your runs

    “As I am a pre-planner, dotting every session to come down on a weekly calendar really helps. This way, I can tick them off as they are completed. And who doesn’t like it when lists are marked off as completed?” says Broodryk.

    Use the 15-minute rule

    “Often we opt out of a session due to not “feeling it” or “feeling tired”, but I have found that when pushing through those 15 minutes, I tend to have my best workouts,” says Adele Broodryk.

    “On the other hand, if I still feel that “zoned out” feeling after the 15 minutes, I will then cancel the workout. This can be an indication of my body being tired or overtraining starting to take place.”

    Maximise your runs

    Get it done

    The best way to make sure you stick to your running plan is to just get it done. “Make your run the first thing you do to start your day,” says Fikile Mbuthuma, 19-time Comrades Marathon finisher. “Morning runs can easily become your important daily task. The run also helps energize the mind and body preparing for the day ahead.”

    Stick to the plan

    “Stick to the pre-planned paces! If a run is set out as an “easy” run, keep it that way!” says Broodryk. Going too hard can result in burnout, which would impede your progress anyway. Keep it simple.

    Get in on cross-training

    Do hill sprints

    “One of the easiest ways to power your legs is to run uphill or on a steep. This is a great way to build leg strength,” says Mbuthuma. Try running upstairs or on an incline on the treadmill in short bursts to power up those quads and glutes. This will help you go farther and faster in your regular runs.

    Add strength training

    “Never underestimate the power of strength training. This will help power you in a run, assisting your running efficiency and speed,” says Broodryk. Looking to add to your routine? Follow these pro-certified tips. More

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    The ASICS GEL-KAYANO™ 30: The Shoe That Will Make You Love Running Again

    Runners, rejoice! ASICS has just launched the GEL-KAYANO™ 30 shoe, the most comfortable stability running shoe featuring brand-new technologies to provide runners with adaptive stability and unprecedented comfort during every step.

    4D Guidance System

    With its new 4D GUIDANCE SYSTEM™, the GEL-KAYANO™ 30 provides adaptive stability and unprecedented comfort during every step. The 4D GUIDANCE SYSTEM™ works with the movement of your body to provide support when you need it most, so you can run worry-free.

    In addition to the 4D GUIDANCE SYSTEM™, the GEL-KAYANO™ 30 also features new PureGEL™ technology for the softest landings ever. PureGEL™ is strategically integrated in the midsole to deliver enhanced shock absorption and smoother transitions.

    The GEL-KAYANO™ 30 also has 20 percent more of the lightweight FF BLAST™ PLUS ECO cushioning and a 4mm increase in stack height, which further improve the comfort level of the shoe.

    As Rohan van der Zwet, Senior Product Marketing Manager at ASICS EMEA, says, “The GEL-KAYANO™ shoe has been a crowd favourite for many years, and quite frankly is a legend in our product range. We know the stereotypes that stability shoes have faced over the years: clunky, ugly, and simply not comfortable. That’s why we’re excited to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the GEL-KAYANO™ series with such landmark developments. Through our commitment to ASICS’ unique design philosophy, we’ve been able to develop a shoe that offers the stability that consumers have grown to love from the series and added the comfort that we know is so important to runners. Stability truly never felt better and we’re eager to see runners across the globe experience this with the GEL-KAYANO™ 30 shoes.”

    Shop The GEL-KAYANO™ 30

    From 5Ks to full marathons, the GEL-KAYANO™ 30 shoe is designed to provide advanced stability and softer cushioning properties.  ​

    Engineered stretch knit upper 

    Improves breathability

    External back heel counter 

    Helps keep the foot stable and provides a more comfortable stride

    The GEL-KAYANO™ 30 is available from ASICS retail, online stores and specialists running outlets.

    Is this really the most comfortable stability running shoe? Comfort is subjective, so judge for yourself. Try ASICS’ latest product innovation and tell us how running in ASICS makes you feel. To find out more, please visit More

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    6 Tips That’ll Help You Get Over The Finish Line Of The Comrades Marathon

    International water activist Mina Guli recently did a whopping 200 marathons in one year around the globe to raise awareness of the global water crisis we’re facing. 200 marathons? Now that’s a woman with intel, we say. Naturally, we turned to her right before the formidable Comrades Marathon to get her tips on how to get over the finish line, blisters and chaffing be damned.

    “I am not a runner, by any stretch of the imagination,” says Guli. “In fact, when I was younger, I avoided doing any form of exercise. But I realised that to raise awareness for the dire global water crisis, I would have to do something very hard to make a real impact. I have found that these six tips are the only reason I am able to make it through my runs when things get really rotten, and it would be so much easier to give up!”

    Stay in the moment

    Wanna give up because there are still 20 whole kilometres of road left? Take it one kilometre at a time, says Guli. “It is really important to remember this is not a 90km race, it is 1km one step at a time,” she says. “Focus on the kilometre that you are doing and the step that you are taking, really focus on just being there in that moment!”

    Focus on your purpose

    Throughout the race, remind yourself why you signed up for this race. Is it to raise awareness around an issue? Did you want to prove to yourself that you can do difficult things? Focus on this. “It’s very important to think in advance why you are doing this race, what your purpose is! It often helps to write this purpose on your hand or your wrist so that you can easily see it and remind yourself on the route why you are there!”

    Think good things

    You’re tired and everything hurts and you just want to give up. This will happen. To help, channel positive thoughts. “There will always be something that hurts – be real it’s 90km – but equally, there is always something that feels good. Whether it’s your fingers, your hands or even the tip of your nose, focus on that and how good it feels! Remember how powerful your mind is and focus your attention away from the hurt to the parts that feel good!”

    Be grateful

    “Phrase thoughts differently in your mind. Instead of thinking, I have to do this race, rather think how awesome it is to be able to take part in this event,” says Guli. “Say hello and thank you to all of the volunteers along the route who make a race like Comrades Marathon possible. When you give positive energy out, it’s incredible the energy that you get back and the power that this gives to your spirit, your body, your mind and your soul.”

    Get the basics right

    Remember your snacks, hydrate regularly and fuel your body properly with loads of carbs before the race. “You need to ensure that you take on the right fuel to help your body get through an incredible feat like the Comrades Marathon,” says Guli.

    Pick a mantra

    “When things get really tough for me, I remind myself that we CAN do hard things, we are capable of so much for than we realise,” says Guli. “I like to bring in all of the points above into my mantra to keep my head in the right space. [Things like] I am able to do hard things, I stay in the moment, I focus on my purpose, I think about only good things, I am grateful and I fuel my body to the best of my ability throughout the run.” More

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    Train Brilliantly With The Garmin Forerunner® 265 GPS Running Smartwatch

    Light on the wrist, not on features.

    The Forerunner® 265 smartwatches are the perfect fit for any runner who wants to train harder and PR on race day. The race widget will make sure you’re race-ready with training tips, personalized daily suggested workouts and completion time predictions based on course details, weather and performance.

    Get a training readiness score based on your sleep quality, recovery, training load and more, so you can determine whether it’s a good day to go hard — or take it easy. Wrist-based running dynamics measure cadence, stride length, ground contact time and more. No accessory required.

    Get insight into overall effort with training status — which uses indicators such as HRV status, recent exercise history and performance — and know whether training is productive, peaking or strained. Access free adaptive training plans from Garmin Coach or through the race widget, or you can create your own custom workouts through the Garmin Connect™ app.

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    READ MORE: The Top South African Road Running Events To Look Out For In 2023

    Run Connected

    Safety and tracking features make it easy to share your location with chosen contacts2. Jam out from your watch. Listen to playlists from Spotify®, Deezer and Amazon Music (premium service required) with your wireless headphones (sold separately). Multi-band GNSS with SatIQ™ technology ensures you get the best positioning accuracy in any environment while also optimizing the device’s battery life.

    3 Key features WH loves about the Forerunner® 265

    Daily suggested workouts – it adapts to match your performance and recovery.

    Race widget – From training tips to weather reports, this watch suggests everything you need to get race-ready.

    Training readiness – You can determine whether it’s a good day to go hard — or take it easy.

    Plus, this watch can track and log your menstrual cycle or pregnancy to get exercise and nutrition education.

    Light, bright and made for any distance. Get the Garmin Forerunner® 265 GPS Running Smartwatch here. More

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    Unlock Your Comfort, Unlock Your City – Aero Glide 

    AERO GLIDE is a high-cushioned lightweight runner styled to rack up miles with limitless bounce and energy. With an upper construction to keep things light and airy and a premium plushness in the tongue and collar zone, the fit experience and game-changing performance on this shoe is unforgettable.

    New Aero franchise brings lightness, comfort and proven technology to everyday road runs.

    The Aero Glide delivers maxed-out cushioning to rack up the miles. The midsole features Salomon’s Energy Foam technology, which combines EVA and Olefin, absorbs shock and vibrations, and creates a super plush cushioning while still providing great bounce and energy return.

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    AERO GLIDE | Salomon Road Running

    The result is comfort even after hundreds of miles. The proven rocker geometry, called R.Camber, creates a quick transition every time you touch the ground and keeps you moving forward. The upper of the shoe, made with 32% recycled materials (by weight) keeps your feet dry thanks to a lighter 3D open mesh. The soft padded tongue and collar combine to offer easy step-in and comfort while you run. At just 264 grams, the Aero Glide is the go-to shoe for comfortable, everyday runs.

    Salomon Aero Glide Road Running Shoe

    Everyday running shoes

    Terrain: Road

    Maximum shock absorption

    MIDSOLE: energyFOAM to deliver long-lasting cushion and bouncy energy return.

    A soft padded tongue and collar zone that cradles your foot and ensure maximum comfort 

    Try your new Salomon shoes at one of these events. More

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    Race Fuel: Exactly What You Should Eat And Drink For A Better Race

    When it comes to race fuel, it’s easy to think just your training should take you over the finish line. But for endurance feats, you need a little food to give your tank more power.

    Raeesa Solwa Mehtar, a biokineticist and running coach, has run multiple marathons, ultra-marathons and several half marathons. Here’s her advice on race fuel; what to eat and drink during the race — plus, what to avoid.

    “Personally, I’d say ditch the gels,” says Raeesa. “Do you feel that energy gels make you feel nauseous, sick or give you stomach issues? I know I do. I’ve run four marathons (all under four hours), one ultra (under six hours) and a couple half marathons and did not use any form of energy gels.” Instead, Raeesa fuels up on real food. “Whole food solubles can easily provide the nutrition and electrolytes needed for long-distance endurance efforts,” she says. Here are her go-to strategies for race fuel that’ll get you across the finish line feeling strong. 

    1. Drink lots of water leading up to race day.

    Your body needs to be thoroughly hydrated on the day of the race. “I usually have small sips of water during the race,” says Raeesa. Per experts, you should drink about two cups of water two hours before your run, then stay hydrated during the run, too. Go with your sweat as an indicator. Sweat is water loss from the body that needs to be replaced, so keep hydrating along with the rate at which you sweat.

    2. Eat a good race-day brekkie.

    “On the morning of the race, I have the same type of meal that I would normally have for breakfast, which is a smoothie,” says Raeesa. “You need to practise your pre-race meal strategy during training. The stomach needs to be trained to handle food during a long run.”

    One Co Ready-To-Drink Smoothie Box

    This selection of healthy, ready-to-go smoothies offers three different flavours in a compact bottle that you can stash in your bike kit or have before and after the race to fuel up.

    3. Replace your body’s electrolytes. 

    After the first 10 kilometres in a race, you need to start replacing electrolytes. “I sip on any form of energy drink, but you could also opt for coconut water, which will provide natural energy, potassium and magnesium,” says Raeesa. Electrolytes could also come from small amounts of food containing salt and sugars, like nuts.

    4. Go bananas!

    Bananas are one of the best energy sources you can have as a runner. They’re a good source of carbs and help prevent cramps. Supporters usually hand out bananas on the side of the road, so grab one.

    5. Pack some padkos.

    “Dates are easy to chew and are higher in sugar and carbs compared to other dried fruit – they’re one of my favourite pre-race snacks,” says Raeesa. “Though certainly not an all-natural, real food, gummy bears or jelly beans contain fast-digesting simple sugars, which will reach the bloodstream quickly, giving you a boost when you need it. Honey may just be nature’s version of a sports gel.”

    You can also make little oat balls as snacks and carry them for homemade, healthy fuel.

    Tropical Mix Snacking Bundle

    Combine these into a delish snack mix or pick and choose the ones you’d like to much on.

    Nanuki Boom Bar Seismic Crunch

    This bar, loaded with sunflower seeds and healthy cornflakes, makes for great race fuel.

    OhMega Macadamia Butter

    Choc-o-block with micronutrients and healthy fats, this delicious snack will keep you going for longer.

    Check out Raeesa’s running woman’s workout for killer abs:

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    6. Don’t skip the taters.

    A baked potato wedges stand during a marathon or ultra race is like approaching an all-you-can-eat candy stand in the running world. They’re not the easiest things to carry (ew…mashed potato pocket!) but if you come across a stand along the road, grab some munchies for a hit of minerals and sustained energy.

    7. No surprises. 

    Be sure to test these new foods on training runs instead of during a race – just in case your stomach doesn’t react well to them while exercising (#totesawks). If gels do work for you, then, by all means, use them properly: drink enough water, train with gels months before, try different brands to see what suits you best and wash them down with water. More

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    Beginners 5K Running Training Plan And How To Crush It In Just 6 Weeks

    If the thought of participating in a full-fledged running race seems daunting, starting with a five-kay run can be an excellent way to build confidence and ease into the world of racing. Not only does the shorter distance sound more achievable than a 10km or longer race, but 5km runs also tend to attract a fun-loving crowd of runners who value camaraderie over competition. Follow this training plan to go from couch potato to 5km runner in 6 weeks!

    5k Training Plan

    This plan, designed by fitness guru Amy Dixon, will help you build from a walk to running 30 minutes without stopping. Do all walking and running at an intensity level that feels challenging, but comfortable. Feel free to switch the rest day, but make sure you have one full rest day each week. And don’t forget to stretch.

    Getting Started

    Now that you have the plan, let’s look at starting out with a few basic items. Choosing the right gear can help you prevent running-related injuries and ensures the support and comfort you need on your 6-week journey. On your rest days, you can browse through the WH Tech and Gear section which is packed with expert advice, reviews, products and helpful tips.

    Adidas Supernova+

    Nike Dri-FIT Fitness Swift

    Nike Women’s Dri Fit Race Run Vest

    Puma Run High Impact Ultraform Bra

    Aonijie Funky Running Hat

    Salomon 250ml/8oz 28 Soft Flask More

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    These Are The Stretches You Should Be Doing Before Race Day 

    For those with a race coming up, here is a quick routine of running stretches that you should do the day before to get your body prepped for the race!

    This is especially important if:

    You’ve flown to the event and have been sitting in a cramped aeroplane seat.

    You’ve been tapering and your body is feeling cranky.

    You’ve been sitting behind a computer a lot the week before the race.

    Your muscles are tight from all the training you’ve been doing in the build-up.

    Runners typically develop tight hamstrings, shorter muscles and tightness in the hips and groin area. This tightness could lead to injury and less than ideal performance on race day.

    Follow this routine for a good pre-race stretch (you can do it the day after race day too, to help with recovery).

    Remember, your body might be cold when you start moving, so make sure you move carefully and with intention, holding poses longer than you would initially (or in a vinyasa flow class).

    READ MORE: These Pilates-Fusion Moves Strengthen, Lengthen And Tone

    1/ Downward Dog

    Good for: Tight hamstrings and calves.

    Start with: Get into downward dog position with your body forming a triangle. Many runners won’t be able to get their feet flat on the ground – and this is fine. Spend about 2 minutes in this pose pedalling out your legs by lifting one heel and then the other and then teasing your heels closer towards the mat. It’s also good for your shoulders.

    2/ Low Lunge

    Good for: Hip flexors, hamstrings and quads

    Start with: From Downward Dog, raise your right leg into the sky behind you and then bring it forward beneath you, placing your foot between your hands. Drop your back knee onto the mat and raise your hands towards the sky. You should feel a nice, deep stretch in the groin area. Hold for 10 breaths and then repeat on the other side.

    3/ Runner’s Lunge

    Good for: Hip flexors, hamstrings and quads

    Start with: From Downward Dog, raise your right leg into the sky behind you and then bring it forward beneath you, placing your foot on the outside and in line with your right hand. This is an even deeper stretch, especially if you keep your back leg lifted. Hold this for 5 breaths and then drop your back knee. Place your right hand on the inside of your right leg and gently guide it, so that it opens up more to the side, opening your groin up more. Hold for 5 breaths. Let go of your knee and see if you can plant both forearms beneath your shoulders, down on the mat, on the inside of your right foot. Try and keep both elbows on the mat. Hold for 10 breaths This will deepen the stretch even more. repeat on the other side.

    READ MORE: Have You Tried The Explosive Cardio Hopscotch Workout?

    4/ Toes Pose

    Good for: Preventing plantar fasciitis

    Start with: Kneel on the mat and curl your toes under then sit your back on your heels. Hold for 10 breaths. You should feel a great stretch on the underneath side of your feet. Then flatten your feet while pointing your toes behind you. Actively lift your knees into the air to feel a great stretch on the top of your feet. This is great for your shins and arches.

    5/ Butterfly Pose

    Good for: Strengthens and opens hips and groin

    Start with: In a seated position, back straight, legs out in front of you, bend your knees and bring the soles of your feet together. Bring your heels as close to your pelvis as they can go, without pain. Wrap your hands around your toes and consciously work your knees towards the floor for 10 breaths. You can also use your hands to peel the top part of your feet open, elbows pressed into your knees so that the soles are facing towards the sky. Hold for another 10 breaths. For an additional variation, lie down on your back and keep your legs in the soles-touching-knees-out position. Stretch out your arms reaching for the wall behind you. Hold for 10 breaths.

    READ MORE: The 6 Greatest Recovery Tools That Ease Tight Muscles

    6/ Seated spinal twist

    Good for: Loosening stiff spine, neck and shoulders

    Start with: Sit with your legs out in front of you. Cross your right leg over the left, knee pointed towards the sky and the sole of your foot on the ground. Place your left palm on the floor at the base of your spine. Reach your right arm across your body and push it against the outside of your right thigh, near your knee, to deepen the twist. Hold for 10 breaths. Repeat on the other side.

    7/ Cow Face Pose

    Good for: hips

    Start with: From all fours, cross your right knee over the left, stacking one on top of the other. Sit down between your legs rooting both sit bones on the mat. If one sit bone is higher than the other, rest on a block or blanket. This is a very tricky position for runners as hips are usually so tight. If you experience any pain or feel that this position is too hard on your body, try the reclined version, by starting with lying down on your back. Cross your knees and send your feet out to the sides. Hold on to your right foot with your left hand and your left foot with your right hand. Or if it’s more comfortable, hold your shins. Pull your heels in towards your body, then out to the sides and slightly up. Hold for 10 breaths, then reverse leg position and repeat.

    8/ Reclining Pigeon

    Good for: Releases tension and tightness in the hips

    Start with: Lie on your back with your knees bent, and your thighs parallel and hip-distance apart. Cross your left ankle over your right thigh. Reach your left arm through the space between your thighs and reach your right arm around the outside of your right thigh. Clasp your hands below your right knee and flex your left foot. If your head comes off your mat, place a pillow or block behind your head. Hold for 10 breaths and repeat on the other side.

    9/ Bridge

    Good for: shoulders, core

    Start with: Lie down on your back. Bend your knees and place the soles of your flat on the ground in front of your bum, toes facing forwards. With your arms placed alongside your torso, you should be able to touch your ankles with your fingertips. Now slowly, hold your core strong and lift first your lower back, then middle back, then upper back off the ground. Hold your hips up as high as you can for 10 breaths. Then release slowly back down. Do this a second time except with the second bridge, clasp your hands underneath you, opening up your shoulders more by rolling your shoulder blades towards each other and creating more lift. This is a great counterpose to running because we’re often hunched forwards.

    10/ Legs up against the wall

    Good for: Relieves tension in legs and feet and stretches hamstring and glutes.

    Start with: Sidle up beside an open wall space, with your hips as close to the base of the wall as is comfortable. Swing your legs up the wall and lie back. Rest here anywhere from 10 breaths to 10 minutes. This can replace a standard savasana. More