By Callan Smith
Here’s something to get the ladies’ hearts racing and blood pumping - the SPAR Women’s 10km Challenge! Warning, there’ll be a few men dotted around the place but they will be clearly marked in long, soft, and bell-shaped pink tutus, some of them at least.
There’s a challenge at every runner’s level at the SPAR Women’s 10km; the serious professionals get the chance to battle it out in the SPAR Grand Prix which takes place over the five 10km Challenges around the country and the winner receives a Nissan Micra.
The rest of the pack, which form the majority of the 18 000 strong runners at each race, will be able to go at their own pace, while enjoying the friendly and animated atmosphere that has come to embody the races. This is your chance to start your journey to fitness in an environment that does not judge you, but spurs you on to victory!
The races are an excellent way for running novices to ease into their budding running careers and a place where they can run or walk, with no threat of a looming cutoff time - all while laughing at the funnily dressed men, having awesome conversations with other runners and getting cheered on by supporters. The challenges are a place where you can get out there and do it, where you can push yourself beyond the couch in the living room - where you dream about running - and find out what you are made of!
Professional runners listen up, the SPAR Grand Prix is the perfect series to test your running mettle as you will be competing against the likes of 2012 Olympic qualifiers Rene Kalmer and Irvette van Blerk, as well as many other top athletes. Be prepared to set your 10km PB’s.
For any runner - male or female, experienced or novice - eating the right foods and training efficiently is essential to fulfilling their potential on race day and you may have the desire to run, but that is nothing without the will to prepare.
Thus, if you want to take up the SPAR 10km Challenge but you are unsure about how to go about your training and nutrition, Sonja Laxton, one of South Africa’s most successful runners and a member of the Runner’s World Hall of Fame has provided you with a running plan to get you started. Also, our Registered Dietitian has prescribed a detailed eating plan that will help you eat right, boost your energy levels and give you the fuel you need to take your lungs and legs to the finish line!
You have no excuse, don’t think twice about it - get your shoes on and come and join us! We hope to see you at the next race!