Uncover your inner athlete!

Every morning in Africa a gazelle wakes up. It knows it must run faster than the fastest lion or it will be eaten.. Each morning in Africa a lion awakes - it knows it must run faster than the slowest gazelle or it will starve.

No matter if you are the lion or the gazelle, when the sun comes up you had better be running!

Friday, January 24, 2014

Inspiration from those refusing to give up

This morning while coming back from my gym session, I ran into an older lady who loves in my neighbourhood that I used to see at the gym but no longer do. I had been concerned for her after not seeing her in a while and so was pleased to see her coming along the road.

we stopped and exchanged greetings and I asked how she was doing. She always inspired me as she was so fit and able into her 70s. Now however she looked very frail and worse for wear. Not wanting to probe, but then she dropped the bombshell that she'd suffered a stroke and so wasn't able to do as much now as she had been able to. Her will to go on and her desire for an active life were still alive, but the body had sadly failed her. It was heartbreaking knowing that I couldn't do anything to help but provide a sympathetic ear at the time she needed it.

She said to me 'Sam - I don't want sympathy. I have achieved so much in my life and even if this takes my movement,  I'm not going to go quietly or without a fight.' She then said that her greatest wish was that other people and in particular young folks were to embrace each day and to enjoy their health and strength as it may be taken at anytime.

This rocked me abit I must say, but it also reminded me that each day is precious and that I need to really live to the full and not take my health or ability to move and run for granted. I take great strength from this lady and others who are faced with adversity but who just won't lie down and give up.

Running together (while living each day to the full)- stride for stride on a life changing ride! - Sean Muller

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Rediscovering the joy of swimming

As runners we are constantly looking for ways to improve at our sport. This is natural in any pursuit of additional fitness or results.

Recently I have been reintroduced to swimming by a very special friend. Her patience and encouragement has helped to reinvigorate my love for the sport that I so enjoyed during my school and college years. Swimming won't necessarily make you a better runner, but it will help to increase your fitness and when you do head back to running, you will be greatly revitalised and keen to step up once again to train hard and achieve goals.

An excellent cardio workout, swimming will also help to cut fat and improve muscle tone which is not only good long term, but will help you to attain a lean mean toned body that may even result in you being more attractive to potential partners.

At the minute I'm training with the goal of completing some ocean swims, but you can keep your swimming as relaxed or intensive as you want to. Throw in a session at least once a week and you won't be sorry. The benefits will be well worth the time.

Running together (while swimming to improve fitness). Stride for stride on a life changing ride. - Sean Muller

Monday, January 20, 2014

Finding love on the run.

Normally one would expect a blog about love to be written by a lady, but here I am penning this one after talking through the subject with a male friend of mine this evening. I am being brave enough to put it out there that at the age of 34, I am probably in the best shape of my life, but nowhere closer to finding a life partner. I am realistic enough to know that sometimes things happen for a reason and I also know that millions out there will never settle down. Non running friends have hinted that it is my running that is a turnoff for many women, with some relatives even going so far as to say 'How will you find someone interested in that?'.

Thing is I have many many interests outside of running and sports. Being fit and healthy is extremely important to me not only to live my life to the full, but also ensure that I'd be able to live life to the full in a partnership. I enjoy going out, but just not interested in stumbling in in an undignified manner at 6am the next day.

Internet dating for fit and healthy people you say.... Tried it already and there are so many liars out there I wonder how these people can even look at themselves in the mirror.

How then does one go about this without having to wade through the mine field of liars and cheats out there? I've yet to come up with an answer, but ultimately we can only stay true to our own morals and upbringing, remain honest and try not to be stepped on in the process.

I am Sam- I'm 34 (a runner.... And swimmer) and in danger of developing into the king of the 'too nice' bucket. I invite you to read the rest of my blog and comment on your own experiences dating in running/triathlon.

Running together (while trying to find love), stride for stride on a life changing ride! -- Sean Muller

Monday, January 6, 2014

Running well into old age

This morning as I embarked on my cross country run, I spoke to an older gentleman at the start who looked well into his 70s. He confided in me that he was looking to run well and to just be able to complete the course. This is something that we all strive for as we age, the ability to just compete and complete. He came in and finished well down the field, but the part that impressed me the most was the dignity and pride that he exhibited when crossing the finish line. If by looking at him I was seeing the future then that is fantastic. I can only hope to be as fit as him in future years.

Running together (well into old age), stride for stride on a life changing ride! - Sean Muller

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Keeping fit on holiday

This week I am revisiting the scene of my London Marathon in April of last year. Strange how this race took place on 21 April and only a week later my country of birth South Africa celebrated Freedom Day on 27 April. Seems as if that was a big two weeks for celebrations.

Having another break out here, my thoughts and discussions this evening turned to how to not lose too much fitness on a holiday and what is the most effective method of doing this.

Science tells us that it takes at least two weeks to start to lose fitness and so any holiday of that length or shorter shouldn't result in loss of fitness, provided you are not wolfing down mass loads of cheeseburgers and booze.

Sure fire workouts to ensure that fitness levels are maintained are the following:

1. 8x400m at 5k pace with jogs Of about a minute inbetween.
2. 20 minute fartlek (Mona fartlek - named after Steve Moneghetti). Start with a warmup of 3k, then 90seconds hard, 90 seconds float (x2), then 60 seconds hard, 60 seconds float (x4); 30 seconds hard, 30 seconds float (x4) and 15 seconds hard, 15 seconds float (x4). Conclude with 3k warmdown.

Both these are tough workouts and will tax you. But they will also ensure your fitness stays high when performed once or twice while on holiday.

So no matter whether you are away for a week or three these workouts will help you.

Running together (while maintaining fitness on holiday), stride for stride on a life changing ride!