07 May 2020
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With lockdown, there was no sporting events to comment on, so we asked all our EADP Athletes to share their views with us on the following:
• What being on the EADP Program meant and did for them the past year.
• What activities were they doing at home to keep happy and motivated.
• Share their 2020/2021 aspirations.
Being on EADP program means a lot to me, I have been receiving a lot since I’ve been on the program, like last year I injured myself while I was training, with no Medical aid, but being on the EADP Program I did receive all the treatment that I wasn’t going to get, the Doctors, the Physio, the Biokineticist and everyone made sure that I received the treatment I needed, which I’m very grateful for.
Since the Lockdown I’m training at home using the training program I received from my Biokineticist from Prime EADP.
2020/2021 I’m ambitious to achieve more in my running career, through EADP Program.
The EADP has been incredible. They have helped me keep fit, healthy and strong. They help me improve all aspects of my training. They make me a better athlete.
I have been trying out new exercises that I have never done before. I stay positive by doing exercises that I want. There is no point in doing something you are not enjoying. This is extraordinary circumstances and we need to do what’s best for us mentally.
My goal is to run a pb in the 400m.
Being on EADP this past year has changed my life, it’s given me the opportunity to be a professional athlete and to be able to get all the medical attention that an elite athlete requires to keep my body in tip top condition. I am able to be treated by top class Physios, bios, have testing and see the doctors at Prime if I need. I would never be able to cover these costs alone so I am very grateful to EADP. I can feel a huge difference in my body and my performances have shown that I am benefitting from being on the program. In the last year I raced three big race and got a gold medal in the Two Oceans ultra and in my Comrades debut as well as ran a personal best time in the marathon I ran in Valencia 2h36.
Lockdown has been challenging for all athletes but I have tried to just keep a positive mindset and am making the most of it, I have loved all the extra time with my children and husband at a SLOW pace. My life is very busy so I am enjoying a slower paced life. I am still able to train at home and have been doing a lot of training with my family involved in all my sessions so I am loving that. We have also done some fun challenges and some obstacle races and beep tests which have been super fun. I’ve taken the opportunity to do some scrap booking and we’ve had a creative dinner each night together be it at the table, in the garden, on the roof or in a tent camping in the garden. This is what memories are made of.
My aspirations for 2020 are to get out of lockdown in decent form and to be able to embrace any race that comes my way, if any this year. If not, I will keep focused and working hard towards my 2021 goals of Two Oceans, Comrades and the Olympics.
EADP has been a huge factor, not just this past year but for the last few years. They have helped me reach the level of support structure and professionalism needed to compete at my sports highest level. Knowing that I have a team looking after my health, recovery, strength, both of the body as well as the mind, allows me to devote almost all my energy and focus on what is needed to be done in the pool. With it being Olympic year, I didn’t want to leave anything to chance.
EADP allowed me to push my body to its breaking point time and time again, but also allow it to recover and get what it needed, when it needed and how it needed it.
With the shock of covid-19 and the postponement of Olympics, I have used this lock down to rest physically, mentally and spiritually. Being able to spend time in the beautiful greenery of the midlands, I’ve been keeping the heart and muscles pumping with runs around the farm, as well as a couple core, yoga and strength sessions weekly. I got creative and made myself a farm-style outdoor gym. A couple blocks of wood, axe, old tractor tyres, a close by tree for a pull ups, water canisters and a few other things, make sure I don’t get too bored.
My goals for 2020/21 still remains the same. I am still totally committed to representing my country at an Olympic Games. I still have more ambitions of once again competing at the highest levels of this sport. I am also setting up more ways to give back to the sport and help mold this country’s future swimming stars through teaching, mentoring and inspiring. Although I face many challenges, I love this sport and don’t plan on leaving it any time soon.
The EADP programme has been an absolute blessing to me in so many ways. I’ve been able to go to physio once a week to help me keep injury free. I have been able to do the gym that I need in order to get better in the pool. Just knowing you have this support base and aid just gives you so much confidence. It’s the structure of a Team that I love as an athlete. Even though I do an individual sport, I need a team to help me get to where I want to be. The EADP has helped me glue every member of my team together. And for that, I am truly grateful.
Keeping active has not been too difficult during lockdown as I am one who struggles to sit still. I have been doing gym programmes, stretch cord swimming and short running sets in the garden. This lockdown has really opened my eyes to how much you can really do at home. The varieties are endless. I need to keep the happy endorphins flowing to make me feel good. Therefore, keeping active and busy keeps me motivated and happy!
2020 was a year full of dreams for me. That hasn’t changed though. I will just push them a bit further on unto 2021. Olympic Games is still in my sights. I will fight and do whatever it takes to get there!
I have been working with the EADP for a few years, and each year, I am extremely grateful. It’s been great having EADP in my corner for the help they provide. It would be difficult for me to perform without them.
In terms of keeping active, I must be honest, a break was needed. I concentrated on my mental health and tried to figure out what the rest of the year will entail. I know there is another big year of preparation coming so I’m relaxing while I can before that process begins.
My goals for this year or cycle are the same. Olympics is what we working for.
Being part of the EADP is a great privilege. It has enabled me to perform to the best of my ability throughout the year. Having access to physio, medical treatment and amazing gym facilaties is something that I am very grateful for as it has been a big part of getting me to where I am today.
Athletes across the world are facing difficult times in the face of Covid-19. As we are currently in a major lockdown it is difficult to stay fit and motivated. During lockdown I have tried to stick to my daily routine as much as possible with gym and running being the bulk of my program to stay fit.
With the uncertainty of when we will be able to return to competition, my aspirations for the rest of the year leading into 2021 are to stay fit and healthy. With my focus set on the Olympic games in July 2021.
Being part of the EADP has meant so much to me. It is a honour to be part of the programme and a privilege. The facilities that we are able to use are really good and Dr Kevin is always very good to me. I am proud to be part of the EADP. Being part of the EADP makes you feel part of something and not feel alone.
I have been doing dry land training, gym work out have spent times in the pool on a cord. It is not the same but least it is something. I have also used this time to rest. My friends keep me motivated and the swimmers in SA and in the other parts of the world keep me motivated as we are all going through the same feelings and can share with each other. I have also been enjoying playing Fortnite with my friends. We have also enjoyed playing badminton.
My 2020/2021 aspirations is to continue to train very hard and to reach the times and goals I set for myself. Being part of SA teams and getting as close as I can to the Olympic times are things I am going to work very hard at.
Paula Van Zyl
The EADP has encouraged me to give my best at all times, and with this motivation, I was able to place second in my category at the Midmar Mile for 2020. I was also awarded the 2019 KZN Sportswoman of the Year with a Disability by the KZN Department of Sport and Recreation, and I would not have been able to achieve this without the guidance and constant support from the EADP team. They have helped me lead a healthy lifestyle, and push towards my goals, but unfortunately lockdown has halted my goals for this season.
Keeping active has been of great importance to me in this lockdown period, and I have found it beneficial to maintain my training routine. I have also been doing X-Box Kinect Nike training between my schoolwork and trying to be active outside too. In doing this, my family have also been motivated into having a family X-Box Kinect night where my brother and I make a mean team and totally destroy our parents.
My goals and aspirations for next season is to get right back to where I was at the start of lockdown as quickly as possible, and hopefully getting re-classified by World Para Swimming. I am also mentally motivating myself to break some records at SASAPD and SA Senior Nationals, as well as push to win my category at the 2021 Midmar Mile.
The EADP program has been great in helping me develop my strengths and improve my weakness, with the aid of professional training solid advise from dietitians and Doctor Subban, weekly massages and Physio when I needed it.
One thing I enjoy a lot and inspires me about the EADP program is they set really good goals which motivates me to always strive my best to reach them, they continually follow up there programs by measuring the results achieved through there testing programs, we then can always be in the knowledge on how far we have come in our set goals and the work that still needs to be achieved.
Whilst in lockdown I have been keeping myself busy by running close to 4-5 km a day, Rey has been sending me core -floor programs weekly which I add to my running as well as keeping the feel of the water by using my pool stretch every other day. Apart from that helping my parents with chores watching movies and having family time.
I Would like to thank the EADP and The Dept Of Sport and Rec for their ongoing belief and support given to me over the years, I promise to always give of my best and represent our province proudly.
The EADP has definitely reassured me that you can never stop learning! Being part of a program like this has taught me so much about not only my sport but also allowed me to get to know other athletes and their sports. It has given me the opportunity to train in the most efficient and effective way possible which has lead to me seeing the results of the program by reaching goals I never thought possible. The support from the department and team has literally changed how I am able to train and it has given me the platform to reach the top level.
Covid-19 has definitely taken everyone for a spin affecting everyone’s plans for the year, but I am still determined to follow my dream of qualifying and being part of the team to wear the green and gold at the Paralympic Games next year. I am so excited to push myself even harder and have the opportunity to prepare for another year and I cannot wait to see what I can do.
Thank you KZN DSR and everyone at Prime and the EADP team for everything you do for us athletes.
I just want to say thank you EADP for your generosity you have displayed by granting this bursary for me, so that I can adopt into my ability to get stronger and failing less in my strength of my body, by help from my Physiography and Bio’s screening’s etc for helping to strengthen my body and legs and also to be emotional strong. EADP is giving me more willing in my life to achieve to my dreams, but not only me but to others also out there with disability like me.
Who would think that I was paralyzed and by swimming and the help of my Doctors and physio and bio I can stand, walk again and be much in my swimming career. With all of their help I have now x12 SA Records on my name of swimming for SA. It’s a dream come true. Thanks to all the staff at EADP you all are angels send above for your love and care towards or athletics. Through all the hard work and help of EADP program I can live a healthy lifestyle. Yes, I have lots off work still ahead but thru EDAP program I’m will much better and stronger and aiming or the next Parra Olympics’ 2021 with positive feelings. Thru EADP program they give me the feeling to being able to live a normal life, with less pain, but more love towards my life that I can make a difference in my life and maybe someone else life. EADP I would have been lost, you help me much in my life, words can’t describe or express my gratitude. And by this program I can still attend my sea rescue training to help save others life.
I’m a swimmer, and was on my why to SA Nationals 2020 where I could have maybe qualify for Parra Olympics but due to COV 19 all was cancelled, I was hard broken, was ready to show the world what I can do and that the COV 19 came along all collapse, by I still lifted my head up to make myself a promise COV 19 will not get me under, I went on still training and swimming at home and also do some rehab training on land so I can get much stronger for the next big events that is awaiting me. I positive in all what I doing as I now EADP is there for me. I’m still drink my Vit and keep me healthy by training both why land and pool. My mom and dad made a swimming strap for me where could swim in the pool and keep my rhythm and still controlling my breathing in water. If I do not train regularly I can lose muscle memory that I don’t want to, so I keep training be better and stronger for what is laying ahead after COV 19. See attached program.
Despite the challenge in my recent years, I still have a bunch of goals I want to accomplish in my swimming career. What I can make the most of the situation of COV 19 in 2020, to keep my head up, and make the best of it all. I know this COV 19 is not just to go away, but it will not stop me by achieving my goals to be one day be in the Parra Olympic team, yes I lost my chance this year due to COV 19 to qualify I have work hard for it even thru both my knee surgeries in 2020. I’m not giving up easily. Thru this struggle of COV 19 I will just come out stronger in the other side even in 2021. I will train harder better, and with the help of EADP anything is possible for a better 2021 for achieving my dreams, so I hope to continue with EADP in the future and 2021. And, by studying thru ETA College it will just make it one step closer to my dreams of 1 day opening my own disability swimming school. Remember PAIN is temporary PRIDE is forever.
I am grateful for the EADP programme as it has allowed me to keep in good health and fitness throughout the year. The programme ensures that I am in my peak performance for events and gives me access to top quality facilities in order to prepare and recover throughout the season.
Although we are currently experiancing a national lockdown, Prime has provided quality gym programs in order to keep fit and healthy. I have also been stationary swimming in my pool at home, as well as adding a run around my house in order to keep a bit of fitness whilst being at home.
My 2020/2021 aspirations were to swim at the second round of trials for Tokyo 2020 in the Seychelles for the Open Water 10km event, athough this has been moved to a later date. For now getting back to the fitness and performance levels will be the main focus of 2020/2021.
Being on EADP has motivated and made me to always want to be in action and continuous training.
As per lockdown restrictions, I have been training within the yard at home, doing extensive exercises and timed runs around the house. I do 600m everyday and averaging between 2 and 2.5 minutes on completion. This keep me happy and motivated. I am fit and ready for any incoming events after this lockdown confinement.
My 2020/2021 season aspirations are;
- improve all my times in all my strokes in swimming. This will help me and meet my projected times in South African National Junior Swimming.
- to win both the KZN Junior and Premier Championship Gala Competitions in my age group.
Mikaeel Mirza – MAKE IT HAPPEN
For me, 2020 was supposed to be all about mindset. The mindset to persevere when things get tough and despite everything that has happened so far, this has not changed for me. I have built an entire brand on the phrase “Make It Happen” and that’s what I will continue to do. My plan for lockdown has always been straightforward: to come out better and stronger then when it began. It hasn’t been easy keeping motivated in such uncertain times but right now all I can do is work on myself and make sure that when the world opens up again, I’ll be ready to face it. I keep myself motivated by watching badminton videos online as well as posting exercise videos online. Because by motivating others, I manage to keep myself motivated as well. I also try to learn new skills that I ordinarily wouldn’t have the time to acquire to help me pass the time. This year, I hope to participate in numerous international tournaments and hopefully join the SA Squad.
Being a part of the EADP program has played such a major role in my fitness journey but as well as my emotional journey. By being part of this program I am reminded everyday that I am a real athlete and that I do deserve a spot at the table. It motivates me to succeed because since Badminton is such an underrated sport we often fall through the cracks, yet when I know that I have the access that I do to any equipment or team support to help me reach the next level, I am reminded that there are people out there who don’t only believe in me, but believe in my dream. That to me is priceless.
As always, being an EADP athlete and being part of the program is the best! I have been part of the program since the beginning, and I can honestly say that it has been the game-changer, for me. I have accomplished some of my best achievements, whilst being on the EADP program. All the staff are incredible at what they do – They are wonderful people, always friendly, always willing to help and always willing to go the extra mile for you – they want the best for you, always!
I was fortunate enough to have competed in African Champs for Aerobic Gymnastics before the lockdown was put into place. As most of our Badminton Tournaments and Nationals for Aerobic Gymnastics have been, either cancelled or postponed, I have been focusing on a shoulder rehab/prehab program (old injury) and been doing a lot of core work and glute-activation work, and have been doing sprints up our driveway, for fitness.
It has been a challenge to stay positive and motivated all day, every day, but making sure that I get a good training session in, has been helping me feel better about myself and the situation.
I was aiming for a senior title this year, for Badminton, in either Women’s Doubles or Mixed Doubles at our SA Champs, and I was wanting to defend my SA title at Nationals for Aerobic Gymnastics later this year. However, all of those dates are uncertain and we can’t be sure if and when these competitions and tournaments will take place. So, for now, I am just trying to stay positive and motivated, and I am wanting to work on learning a new element, which I would like to compete soon!
To be part of the EADP is a massive honour and support system as a South African athlete. For many of us we have to work full-time in order to support ourselves and our racing careers financially. As you can imagine this is a big responsibility given the hours we spend training, travelling and racing – to manage a working career as well makes this more than a full-time job! Thanks to EADP some of that stress is taken away because we have the opportunity to receive our medical, biokinetics coaching, physiotherapy and even sports psychology as part of the sponsored programme, among other things too. This means we can train effectively and to the best of our ability as well as receive medical attention when we need it, without having to carry the financial burden. Finances aside, to be part of the EADP team creates an athlete and practitioner family, a base at the PRIME HPI where we can come and go for treatments and sessions, and a community to call home!
During lockdown it has been a goal of mine from the start to do something everyday that keeps me mobile but also has motivational and health benefits for people all over the world who are also housebound during lockdown. So with this in mind I started releasing a video via Facebook and YouTube everyday named #5aday which provided five simple, body weight exercises which anyone could do at home. The daily video release meant people could follow the exercises and do them each day, as many times as suited their ability, and most importantly provided them with a bit of motivation and inspiration everyday to do something. Along with my daily #5aday I have followed the gym programmes provided by the Biokineticist I work with, Lynne Mackey, as well as cardio training on the ergo machine.
I have also used this time to work on my online coaching business as so often training comes before work so I am now able to manage that balance much better. And of course, it is been a great opportunity to spend more time with my husband and at home, cooking and doing DIY tasks around the house which we are both usually too busy to give attention to. There are always silver linings to big, black clouds!
With so many races being cancelled for our 2020 season it is very hard to put pen to paper for 2020 and 2021 aspirations. I do know that when the time comes and we are allowed to paddle again, I want to spend more time coaching and racing domestically to try and grow the sport of surfski paddling here in Durban and around South Africa. Without the opportunity for international travel and racing this year we can focus our attention on giving back to the domestic races and teaching people from our home towns how to paddle so that next year we have contributed to growing the sport and bringing new paddlers to races.
It’s been really great as an athlete to have so much support when it’s needed.
We can see a doctor for assistance when needed, I can always get the needed recovery through Physio, Chiro and Bio’s to make my body work better as a whole!
There is always a friendly face and greeting at Prime.
I have got some weights and a paddling ergo to keep active.
I have a small keyboard so I am learning to play the piano again as well as writing some programs for my athletes, reading and doing some online courses!
At this stage the aspirations are to keep motivated and Fit, it’s difficult to plan too far ahead right now!!
Being on the EADP programme has meant so much to me this past year. The success to sport and competing at a high level is so much more than just the training you do in the boat every day. Other aspects that can contribute to you as a paddler, such as strength training, nutrition and recovery are often neglected by so many athletes. To have the support from the KZN Department of Sport and Recreation and the facilities of Prime High Performance Institute, these other aspects have been made possible to me and I am forever grateful to the contributions they play in my sporting career. The highlights of the programme for me is the opportunity to see a dietician to make sure that I am at the perfect racing weight, the opportunity to see a physio, bio and sports massage therapist on a regular basis as well as the strength training I receive from Jaryd once a week.
During the lockdown I have been fortunate to have a kayaking ergo at home that I have done most of my paddling sessions on. Although it is not quite the same as being on the water, it is better than nothing and have enjoyed a challenge to my workouts. In the afternoon I focus on strength sessions, core, Pilates and stretching. I still take one rest day a week and on Sunday generally attempt a run around the driveway on my 50m lap course. I believe having a routine has helped to keep me disciplined and motivated to get up and train every morning.
My 2020 year is looking to be somewhat different this year. Most of our international races have all been cancelled, so it will be very strange to not have to travel this year and quite disappointing. However, it looks like our local calandar has been shifted towards the end of the year, so I will try and do as much as I can and maybe do races that I wouldn’t generally get a chance to do because of other commitments. Hopefully by 2021, things will be back to normal and that we will be allowed to travel again and continue to do what we love, race.
For me the biggest advantage is the relationship I have built with Dr Subban. He has kept me more healthy than I would have been by myself and when I have fallen ill he has helped me tremendously. To the point where he visited me whilst I was in hospital.
I have been continuing my cycling training on Zwift – this is an online game which lets you virtually cycle with other people around the world. I have also been doing core and strength exercises at home.
My aspirations are to come top 3 in a SA XCO Cup and also to come top 3 at SA XCM Championships.
I am very thankful for the support of the EADP Program throughout my cycling journey, but for the last year I have really been able to take my training to the next level by utilizing the gym facilities and having the support of the various healthcare professionals available at Prime in Durban.
During this difficult period I have been fortunate enough to be able to continue my regular training schedule at home on my indoor trainer, as well as including cross-training into my training program. Exercise has really helped to keep me level-headed and focused despite not being allowed to train outside the border of my own home.
My aspirations and goals for this year remain the same in the way that I am working towards the bigger races at the end of the season, such as the possibility of World Championships and maybe even Olympics in 2021.
Unfortunately, we cannot guarantee when we will next be back on the start line, so the best plan of action for the time-being is to enjoy the process of staying active and spending time with family until it is safe for competition to resume.”
It has been a tough road being a pioneer in the Down Syndrome Gymnastics arena. I’ve been doing gymnastics for 20 years, with my first international competition being in the UK in 2010. I won a Gold and a Silver medal at the British Open Championships. My routines were very basic then (based on the Special Olympic format). I knew I could do so much more – and so my regimen started, under the expert tutelage of Alan Chadwick and the encouragement from Hazel Coates (Ireland).
I and my coach, Allan Chadwick, were privileged to attend the inaugural World Down Syndrome Championships in 2012 (completely self funded). It was at this championship that people became aware of how much athletes with Down Syndrome can do – my competitor’s routines were still based on the limited Special Olympics format. I was crowned World Champion.
Fast forward to 2019, with many competitions and medals behind us, we were finally gaining recognition, being awarded the Overall SAGF Sportsman of the year and the KZN Sportsman of the year with disability. It was also in June 2019 that we were advised that I was part of the EADP. This was the cherry on the top and meant that I could train all the harder for the Trisome Games in Antalya, Turkey scheduled for April 2020.
Being part of the program has been such a blessing. Gymnastics is an unforgiving sport requiring repetitive routines that take their toll on the body. A gymnast’s calloused hands are testament to the rigours. In the past it has always been a challenge being able to see a physiotherapist, biokineticist or a doctor on a regular basis. The EADP program has given me access to all of the above, while also enabling me to focus on strengthening where it is required. I have loved every session at X-Prime and enjoy interacting with the interns – each having their own variations making every session interesting.
During this lock-down period I have been doing a daily exercise routine (usually cardio) in the morning interspersed with strength and stretch routines every other day. Not having all the right equipment at home has meant getting creative improvising with various household “apparatus” (read furniture).
Finally, I would like to thank all that made it possible for me to be part of the EADP. I have benefitted tremendously and look forward to doing you proud at the next competition.
The EADP has done a lot for me over the past year as I have had to overcome quite a few injuries this season and if it wasn’t for primes support, I would not be in the condition I am today.
I have been doing a lot of gymnastics and body weight related exercises since I’ve been at home. It is unfortunate that training facilities cannot be used however I am still motivated to make each day count.
I would like to win a medal in the African championships later this year. I am also in the running to qualify for the Olympic Games next year so that would be an absolute dream for me as such a young athlete.
Firstly, I would like to thank and show my gratitude to the EADP Programme and to KZN DSR for giving me the opportunity to be one of the athletes in EADP Programme.
There is so much that I have gained since being included in the Programme. From being one of the better athletes to being one of the best, I am really grateful for the opportunity. The EADP has not only helped me to be the best performer that I can be in sport (Para Table Tennis), but it has also helped me to be a better person in terms of self-confidence and self-esteem. From the time of the ‘accident’, I have always looked down on myself, telling myself that I cannot do it or how will people look at me since I am ‘different’ in a way.. and Sport has helped me look beyond that; to be the best that I can possibly be.
Ever since I started at Prime, my performances have been better than from when I was not part of the Programme. One particular example would be that of the AUSC Region 5 Championships held in Botswana in 2018, February and in Lesotho December last year (2019). In 2018 I only managed to get myself a silver medal whilst last year I managed to get gold from the same lady. From this I can see I have improved due to the inclusion in the EADP Programme. I have gained more self-confidence and my self-esteem has gone higher. If it is not for the KZN DSR and the EADP Programme who give me their support, I would not be able to judge my performances.
As a Psychology student, I can see it has also helped me mentally, academically I can excel also.
Ever since the National lockdown started, I have been away from Durban where my trainings and gym sessions take place. I am currently out of Durban. This poses many constraints on my physical fitness as I have no equipment that is needed for gym. The environment I am currently in does not allow for any activities. My hope is for this COVID-19 to end as soon as possible so that I can get back to my 100% health fitness and get back to the table so that I can prepare for all the events that were postponed due to this pandemic.
As a student-athlete, there are many goals and achievements that I work hard towards reaching each day. I aspire to major in keeping fit for all the events that are to take place once the COVID-19 pandemic has passed. One of my biggest aspiration for 2020/2021 is to perform to the best standard; best of my ability. This means making sure that I keep my number one ranking in the Para Table Tennis in South Africa.
This will require a lot of my time in trainings and gym sessions which is what I plan to do in 2020/21. I will put more focus in trainings and gym whilst not shifting away from my school work as I am doing my last year in Psychology and Criminology. But athletically, I have to continue gain strength, speed and agility so that I can be the most explosive player on the table. I have many strong characteristics that set me apart from average players. I am a leader on and off the table, I have strong morals and values and believe that when I show empathy towards those that struggle to make the right choice, they look up to me and follow my lead. At all times I take I take what I do seriously and will always give 100% towards what I strive to achieve success.
The EADP has provided me with financial support that has allowed me grow in the sport of triathlon. I have collaborated with many people from Prime who have given me advice and have helped me overcome injuries. It is comforting to know that I am supported by a program, such as the EADP, that have had a huge role to play in my triathlon career.
Motivation is a massive topic for athletes all around the world during this current time. I have been battling myself, as there are no scheduled races to push me. However, sport has always been a big part of my life and during times like these, the love for the sport starts to show. Although I don’t train as intensely as I used to, I focus on my strength work and consistency, rather than big and hard sessions. I have a swimming contraption for my pool that allows me to keep swimming, and an indoor trainer to keep cycling. I run in my backyard and drive way, just enough to maintain some sort of fitness. Instead of focusing on what I’m not able to do, it’s better to be grateful for what you can do.
In July of this year I am scheduled to go to America, where I will continue my studies and pursue my triathlon career. I will continue to race internationally, as well as come back home for the holidays. Although this is a scary transition for me, I am excited to try something new and hopefully inspire other young athletes to do the same.
Being part of the EADP team has been incredible. I’m fairly new to the whole program, but having access to the facilities at Prime has certainly helped me improve in triathlon. The staff at Prime are always so friendly and I’ve learnt so much from being treated by them. In terms of how to recover efficiently, how to strengthen my weaker muscles to prevent injury, and important rehab exercises from when I had been injured.
I’m fortunate enough to have a treadmill and indoor bike trainer at home. I can’t say my training has continued as normal (especially with no races coming up soon). However, I’m managing to keep a general base fitness so that when racing does resume – I’m ready! I’ve also (like many other swimmers) used a bungee cord so that I’m able to swim in my pool. It’s quite boring not going anywhere, but it gets the job done. It’s hard to stay motivated in times like these, but just the thought of being on the start line again has kept me going. Lastly – thank goodness for Zwift. It makes 2hrs sitting on a stationary bike so much more entertaining.
I would love to podium again at SA TRI champs and African TRI Champs (which was supposed to be in Egypt this year). However, those two races have been potentially postponed. Competing well overseas has always been an aspiration of mine. After racing in places like Europe I’ve always come back with so much more insight and perspective as to where I’m at compared to the international triathletes. I would love to go overseas this year to race, so hopefully that becomes possible later in the year. 2021 will be my first year as an u23 athlete, so I plan to race purely for the experience and hopefully get used to running 10km off the bike instead of 5!