Runner Aiming for Guinness World record

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Blog by Rachel Grunwell: Official blogger for the ASB Christchurch Marathon. Rachel is a marathoner, yoga teacher & Good magazine’s wellness columnist + smoothie chick. Follow Inspired Health’s Facebook, Instagram & Twitter.

Puzzling Marathon Mission: Runner going for Guinness World record

Most people consider running a marathon tough enough. But Christchurch personal trainer Blair Williamson aims to try and break a Guinness World title too when he tackles the ASB Christchurch Marathon on June 4, 2017. The 26-year-old wants to solve the most Rubik’s cubes while running NZ’s fastest and flattest marathon course.

Williamson aims to solve around 200 Rubik’s cubes while running the event (in under 5-hours). He needs to beat American Shane White’s record of solving 175 of the cubes during the Rock ‘n’ Roll Savannah Marathon in America in November 2012 (in 4hrs 53mins).

Williamson, can usually run a sub 4-hour marathon. But he may slow down his stride so he can get in more puzzle-solving missions throughout the race. This event will be his fifth marathon challenge and his second crack at the Christchurch event.

He’ll have a support crew of about three mates who will help him on race day. He’s yet to fully sort the logistics ie how many Rubik’s cubes he will use, whether a mate will run beside him and mix them up in-between Williamson solving the cubes, or whether someone might need to transport 200 fresh cubes to him throughout the course.

He applied to the records office in January to try and officially break the record and hopes to hear soon on approval (it can take up to 12-weeks to lodge an attempt at a record through the “free” entry option). The Guinness World Record office will also send him guidelines around his mission ie how he will need to get the official evidence of his success on the day (ie should runners watch him every moment and verify the numbers or should they video the puzzle solving.

Williamson says the idea came about when a fellow trainer sent him a link about a runner holding a title for the mission near the end of last year. The friend knew Williamson loves running and is an expert at doing the puzzles.

The personal trainer (at Limit Zero gym in Christchurch) has since been training – on the road and on a treadmill with the cubes. During a two-hour training run he managed to solve 88 Rubik’s cubes.

He says he learnt how to master the puzzles nine years ago when friend taught him “how to look at it a different way”.

“The puzzles used to confuse me and give me a headache. But a friend showed me how to do a pattern and it’s just now like doing a puzzle. It now is just common sense to me,” he says.

He says he can do the puzzles as fast as under a minute. And this great pic shows he can also juggle the colourful cubes.

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I asked him if he’s afraid of falling over while he’s trying to do two things at once? Williamson admits he did “semi-roll” his ankle once already. But it hasn’t put him off his goal.

“I’m looking at my hands while I’m looking down at the ground anyway. So, there’s a peripheral view. But looking down gets my neck a bit crocked too. But I’ll put up with that on race day,” he says.

Join Williamson by running at the Christchurch Marathon’s full or half marathon, 10km distance or sign your kids up for the “kids mara’fun” by clicking HERE

Blog penned by Rachel Grunwell: Marathoner. Blogger. Good magazine’s wellness columnist. Yoga teacher. Follow Rachel via Inspired Health ‘s Facebook, Instagram & Twitter pages.

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Parents of teen lifesaver will run the Rotorua Marathon event to raise money in his memory

 

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Article by Rachel Grunwell: Official blogger for the Rotorua Marathon. Rachel is a marathoner, Good magazine’s wellness columnist + smoothie chick & yoga teacher . Follow her via Inspired Health’s Facebook & Instagram for inspo, recipes & giveaways.

Greg and Donna Rieger – the parents of a teenager lifesaver who drowned a year ago plan to conquer 12 half-marathons in his memory. And the Rotorua Marathon event is at the top of their list for a special reason.

Hamish Rieger, aged 17, was tragically swept off the rocks near the blowhole at Moturiki (Leisure) Island in the Bay of Plenty on January 23.

Greg and Donna will celebrate Hamish’s life, and his thirst for adventure, by doing 12 half-marathons – so that’s 252km in total (and that doesn’t even count all those training miles!) They hope to raise $12,000 – $1000 for each 21km event – to fund a Spirt of Adventure scholarship fund for Mount Maunganui teenagers.

Greg says they chose the Spirit of Adventure as the recipient of their fundraising efforts because Hamish’s experience of doing this in 2015 inspired the teenager to go on a fitness-kick and to chase his ambitions to a higher level.

They hope that the donations help some other local teenagers to have that same wonderful opportunity.

Greg says how The Spirit of Adventure helped Hamish:

“He was always the kid who embraced life but he came back from the Spirit of Adventure more mature, with his heart opened, and a commitment to living life to the full every day… For that, we are forever grateful and want to give kids from his community the chance to have the same life-changing experience,” says Greg.

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Pic of Hamish supplied by Jamie Troughton.

Margi Mellsop, from The Spirit of Adventure Trust, says Greg and Donna’s 12-half-marathon mission is “so inspiring” and she is so grateful the fundraising will go to The Spirit of Adventure Trust.

“We are so moved by Greg and his family’s commitment to celebrate the life of Hamish in this way. Their efforts will ensure that Hamish’s spirit of adventure will be passed to other Mount Manganui teens . What an incredible legacy they are creating,” she says.

Greg says they are yet to pinpoint all the events they will do. But the Rotorua half-marathon on May 6 is at the top of their list. It is special to him and Donna because Hamish had entered it this year, but he died before he could run it.

Instead, Greg and Donna completed that dream for Hamish in 2016, walking hand-in-hand, and shedding more tears than sweat on that journey. They did this event quietly, without media attention, as they were so grief-stricken at that time.

Greg says he barely noticed the pain of blisters and all those tough miles. His focus was instead on Hamish through every mile.

“By the end of that event my eyes were streaming,” says Greg.

Next year, Greg and Donna will repeat Hamish’s goal again. But this time, their steps will mean even more because of the public fundraiser.

Greg has already started training for the Rotorua half-marathon. He plans to run this, while Donna plans to walk. Hamish’s siblings Oliver, 22, Fergus, 20, and Eliza-Jane,15 and up to 40 family members and friends have pledged to join them too at the Rotorua Marathon event, all wearing ‘I Ride with Hame’ printed asics t-shirts.

Greg, 53, says he can’t wait to be lining up at the start-line at Rotorua’s Government Gardens for the event.

“I’m absolutely fizzing and so looking forward to doing this,” says Greg.

Greg says he has been overwhelmed with support since a story appeared in the Sunday Star-Times about the fundraiser. Three people contacted him immediately to say they wish to donate and a physio in Tauranga has also pledged to help keep Greg in good shape during the journey.

Greg has also been contacted by a surf club member to say they wish to recruit lifeguards from about three  clubs to participate in the Rotorua Marathon event – to give their support to the family.

“I’ve been blown away by the support, totally blown away. I’m pretty stoked,” says Greg.

Greg says Hamish would be proud of the fundraiser. The teenager gave back a lot to his community as a member of the Mount Maunganui lifeguard service, which the Riegers continue to be proudly involved with.

Meanwhile, the Papamoa-based dad says milestones that Hamish misses hurt the most.

This month, Greg and Donna were invited to attend the Mount Maunganui College’s 2016 graduation ceremony to accept Hamish’s graduation certificate. Greg says it was tough not seeing his son graduate, but he was incredibly honoured to  get the certificate and said it was an “emotional experience and one I will always cherish”.

The parents are expecting the milestone of January 23 to be tough too. But doing the fundraiser for Hamish’s memory will help them move through their pain and celebrate their treasured boy’s life.

  • Please support the ‘I Ride With Hame’ fundraiser with a donation: ASB 12-3011-0461607-52
  • You can enter the Rotorua Marathon event by clicking here

– An earlier version of this story was published in the Sunday Star Times & the stuff.co.nz website by Rachel Grunwell.

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Top pic of Greg and Donna was supplied by marathon-photos.com

Solo mum is mind-tough to “shuffle” through Rotorua Marathon

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By Rachel Grunwell

“I do not have the body of an athlete, but I have the determination,” says Karleen Whaanga.

The 42-year-old solo-mum from Cambridge, who works at Work and Income, won the Rotorua Marathon event ticket giveaway through an Inspiredhealth.co.nz competition. Hers was an emotional and raw plea for the entry to inspire her to get fit again.

She wrote: “I gave up on me. Just getting back into training one step at a time… I may not have the figure of an athlete but I sure do have the drive and motivation to give it a go…”

Karleen had read an article on our website about granddad James Crosswell running the marathon event for the 40th time. She said the grandad inspired her to get fit again “bless him”.

Karleen’s request for the entry was overwhelmingly a winner. We love her can-do mind-set.

This will be Karleen’s second marathon. She walked this same 42km distance last year with legendary trainer Doug Healey’s group, which has a motto of “no one gets left behind”. Some stopped for a picnic half way through, others for fish ‘n’ chips and the team helped each other get their marathon medals.

Last year she says she ended up walking 49km in total because she finished and then went back to help some friends reach the finish-line.

“Just to finish with the team last year was phenomenal. It was the best feeling and I couldn’t stop crying. We couldn’t stop crying because we finished something. I know what that feeling is like. I love it,” she says.

Her goal this year is to “shuffle” through the marathon, rather than walk and to do it by herself “for myself and it’s about me being accountable for me.”

Karleen currently has a sore ankle from playing indoor netball, but she says this will be no barrier to her turning up at the event. She is doing strength training thrice weekly in the interim, until she can “shuffle” again shortly.

“I’m not a natural runner; I’m a shuffler. My endurance is great. The biggest muscle getting me through will be my mind,” she says.

She is not worried the marathon is not far away on May 6.

“I’m mentally prepared. My body just has to catch up,” she quips, adding “my mum finds this so funny” and tells her “oh well, can you please tell your body to hurry up and catch up with your mind then. Chuckle, chuckle”.

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Here’s a pic of Karleen after doing the swim for a team event at IronMaori in December last year. She says back then she was “at my biggest”. Her dream is to one day do this whole event solo.

While, here’s a pic of this inspirational mum “now” below.

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Karleen says she learnt mental toughness while growing up on the East Coast – “I was constantly told that I wasn’t good enough. But I told myself that, actually, you can’t tell me I can’t do anything”.

She says doing Doug Healey’s run training programme a few years in Auckland also inspired her she can get fit and tackle anything she sets her mind to.

Back then she would drive from her home in Cambridge, to Auckland, for the training session every weekend. Hence, the reason why she has the nickname “Cambridge”.

Fellow runners just could not believe she drove all that way for the training sessions – “and I was often the first one there in the mornings”.

Karleen says she is used to “pushing past barriers”. One of the hardest barriers in life was being a solo mum, she says. She then found life tough when her daughter became independent and left home at age 18. She missed her daughter, and felt depression coming on, and so that was when she joined Doug Healey’s group to give her a goal and a focus. She has learnt in life that “there’s no one holding you back other than yourself”, she says.

Karleen says she is excited about the Rotorua Marathon and will have lots of friends and whanau cheering her on. She can’t wait to savour that finish-line feeling.

“Yes, I will probably cry at the finish,” she says.

Join Karleen and thousands of others walking or running the Rotorua Marathon event (there are four distance options) -click HERE.

  • Blog by Rachel Grunwell: Mum, marathoner (she has run 16), qualified yoga teacher (yoga-for-runners classes), wellness columnist for Good magazine and the director the lifestyle website inspiredhealth.co.nz Follow Inspired Health for health + fitness inspiration & giveaways via Facebook & Instagram. Go in the draw this week to WIN a Fitbit watch.

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Grandad ready for 40th Rotorua Marathon

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Photo of James running the Rotorua Marathon event courtesy of Marathon-Photos.

By Rachel Grunwell

Grandad James Crosswell is about to run the Rotorua Marathon for the 40th time when the event is held on May 6, 2017.

He’ll be darn proud of this achievement and he reckons that finish-line feeling will be just as good as the first time he lapped the lake in 1973.

“Getting to that finish-line is the ultimate,” says the 67-year-old plumber from Opotiki.

“It’s amazing when I’m lining up at the start-line too and people are all nervous and ask ‘how many (Rotoura Marathon events) have you done?’ Well, people almost fall over when I tell them!”

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Here’s a picture from the archives.

James says he aims to keep running this event until, well, he can’t run it anymore. He’s keen to catch up to the tally that his late mate Colin Smyth reached before he died aged 76 in 2015. Colin ran the event an inspirational 50 times and is a local legend for this achievement.

“God willing, if I’m able to – I’d like to beat his record,” says James.

Interestingly, Colin too was a plumber like James.

“Maybe this running business could be something to do with the trade perhaps,” quips James, who has been running since he was a teenager.

James says he runs for general health and fitness. He has lost track of the number of marathons all up he has run. It would be around the ”80” mark, he reckons. But these days he just concentrates on running the Rotorua Marathon each year.

“I love the Rotorua Marathon course because it has a bit of everything: Great terrain, some hills, water, good competitors and you only have to do one lap”.

His fastest ever marathon time was 2hr 49min in Hamilton – a course years ago which required numerous laps of one area in the Waikato.

By the way his fastest Rotorua Marathon time is 2hr 52min, but these days he is happy to do the event “around the four-hour mark” with a walk/run approach.

“I love this challenge,” he raves.

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Picture of James smiling at the finish-line. Pic is courtesy of Marathon-Photos

His wife Maureen and three daughters support his running. He is a grandad to four grandsons.

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Pictured from left to right: Sarah, James, Emma and Rebekah

James has long been a member of the Rotorua Marathon’s  ‘Survivors Club’ – a club you can enter if you have run the event 15 times, or more.

Pam Kenny, who helps run the Survivors Club, says the membership of this club currently stands at 531 (including 34 who are now deceased).

Enter the Rotorua Marathon (there are four distance options) by clicking HERE.

  • Rachel Grunwell is a marathoner (she has run 15), qualified yoga teacher (specialises in yoga-for-runners), columnist for Good magazine and the director of the lifestyle website www.inspiredhealth.co.nz Follow Inspired Health on Facebook & Instagram 

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Inspirational blind runner signs up for Cigna Round the Bays

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Achieving your goal – no matter what!

By Rachel Grunwell

Can you imagine being legally blind and running fast? Well, Maree Carson does this. The 32-year-old Wellington travel agent refuses to let her disability stop her from running.

 

Maree’s next event is Cigna Round the Bays on 19 February, 2017. Her goal is to step up her speed so she can beat her time of 1hr 46mins from the same event earlier this year.

“I’m quite competitive and so I’m looking forward to doing it again and trying to do it better,” she says.

 

To achieve her goal she will join the Wellington Harrier Athletic Club to help with her training. Maree also runs with Achilles New Zealand, who support her by teaming her up with a guide to help her along new and unknown courses.

 

Next year’s event will be Maree’s fifth half-marathon following her completion of the New York Marathon last month with the help of Achilles guide Josh Thomas, from Wellington. He will also volunteer at Cigna Round the Bays, an event he is a big fan of.

 

“It’s an easy and flat course, the water views are beautiful and there are good vibes,” he says.

 

Maree loves the event too and has always run. “I love it. I feel quite free and it gives me a clear head. It makes me feel better. It makes me so happy,” she says.

 

Maree started losing her sight aged 16 through a degenerative eye condition, Retinitis Pigmentosa. She has less than 5 percent vision including no depth of vision or peripheral vision. She cannot see in the dark, in shadows, and sometimes “floaters” affect her central vision.

 

Her commitment to running is an incredible inspiration.

Achilles is the official charity partner of Cigna Round the Bays. Want to help? If you would like to guide an athlete, or have a disability and would like help to take part in Cigna Round the Bays, contact Achilles at achillesnewzealand.org. Or fundraise for this worthy cause. You can set up a fundraising page as part of your registration.

 

ENTER NOW

Register for the event at cignaroundthebays.co.nz and join #stepitupnz.co.nz to be in to win a prize worth $2500.

Column by Rachel Grunwell, an award-winning writer, magazine wellness columnist, Cigna Health and Wellbeing Ambassador, runner, qualified yoga teacher and director of InspiredHealth.co.nz. Follow Rachel on Inspired Health’s  Facebook & Instagram pages.

ps go into the draw to WIN a health and fitness book on facebook at the moment by fitness phenomenon Kayla Itsines!

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adidas boxing lesson with gold medalist David Nyika

By Rachel Grunwell

“Instead of being a big dog, be a fast cat”.

So says Commonwealth Games gold medallist David Nyika just before taking a group of “fit chick influencers” through a boxing lesson to trial the new adidas climachill gear.

I was there – and it was nice to do something different instead of running, running and more running…

Nyika shared a few gems of advice (before making us suffer in our own sweat baths). He revealed his strategy around winning. He reckons boxing, by the way, is “a super chaotic sport” and there are so many “different animals in the ring trained to do different things to you”. So to come out on top he says he becomes a “chameleon”. What he means is, he knows he’s not the biggest, strongest guy. So instead his strength is “adapting to whom I’m fighting”. So he adapts to who he faces in the ring to overcome adversity. So instead of being a big dog, he becomes that fast, light-footed cat who devours its prey and spits it out. And not just some pussy…

I loved this lesson. Adaption is important. Taking a different approach is sometimes key. Being someone, or something, that people don’t expect too keeps you one step ahead, so to speak.

Anyway, here are some pictures from that sweat bath I was talking about…

By the way Nyika told us “I don’t bite, so this should be pretty fun” before we entered the sweat bath… 

 

 

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Fast rounds of punching and then doing “combinations”… but I’m keeping my cool when the heat is on.

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Finding focus…. ten points if you can guess who I’m visualising as that poor bag #meangirl ha ha ha

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The exercises were a killer on the arms. I hope my arms will be able to move tomorrow… at least enough to lift my toothbrush.

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Game on girlfriend pow! Actually, this is the lovely Jen from transforme_nz

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Pictured here with David Nyika. Sometimes you just have to have a sneaky step up on the box so you can get (almost) to the same height as your opononent. Just saying… #shortgirl

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Who else laughs when they’re getting their ass kicked in a boxing session? Or am I alone… and weird. Maybe both. Yes, definitely both.

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Here’s some of the sweat team.

Thanks adidas.

ps thanks for the set of boxing gloves. Life can get tough; these will be very handy…

Follow Rachel via InspiredHealth on Facebook & Instagram

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Rachel is a wellness magazine columnist, Cigna wellness ambassador, multi-marathoner, qualified yoga teacher, healthy recipe creator, Goodpeoplerun ambassador, Achilles charity ambassador and adventure-seeker… 

Kids Yoga “Taking Off” at True Food & Yoga

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By Rachel Grunwell

The magical power of yoga can have transformative mind, body and soul benefits for us grown-ups. This ancient practice can also uplift our little “muggles” in equal measures.

Auckland’s True Food & Yoga wellness centre has just launched yoga classes for children and so I checked out a class with my son Lachie.

Firstly, this is one of the most beautiful studios in this city. That sea-side view from Tamaki Drive, overlooking the bobbing boats and sparkling waters of Okahu Bay – and that gorgeous glimpse of the Sky Tower in the distance – is soul-lifting in itself (even in overcast weather). Inside the former Hammerheads restaurant too is stunning. Those memorable arch-windows have that wow-factor and it’s a clean and fresh decor.

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But it’s the power of yoga on offer here for kids that’s out-of-this-world. Literally.

Yoga teacher Nisha Kumar-Joon invited her students to use their imagination and go on a “mystical adventure” and pretend to be in their very own spaceship in the room. So the kids gleefully zoomed about, fizzing and smiling. She inspired them to create their own stories with movement, while chilled music provided a backdrop. Other parts of the class too were equally creative. There were stretches, strength and then balance poses (imagine flying aeroplane poses here) and all of this required “focus”, which is good for brain development. While another part of the class saw the kids laying down, peaceful, eyes closed, meditative, and with a ball on their belly while they breathed (ie so the ball rose up and down on the belly so they could focus on how to correctly breathe with their diaphragm. This can powerfully calm down the nervous system).

 

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Mid-class the kids were colouring in and drawing anything space-like including stars, moons and other-worlds.

 

 

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Their parents were in another “world” too, some blissfully near the edges of the room reading lounging about on bean-bags. While others enjoyed welcome “me-time” out in the bistro on the other side of the centre.

 

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So how was the experience for my son Lachie? Well, he walked into the class, a bit apprehensive, and knowing no one. But he tried all the yoga poses, drew a star, became a “space-ship” and loved running around the room. He giggled most over the games and loved a partner exercise with a little girl Sovinna, where they passed a ball using their feet. They both giggled, and giggled…

The kids were asked to “find their way home again” in their “spaceship” i.e. come back to their yoga mat for the closing of class. They then placed their mats in a collective star-shape. To see all their tiny hands in prayer-position to end the class was joyful.

 

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Nisha, a hatha yoga teacher with an osteopathy background, says kids get so much out of yoga. There’s the cognitive development, physical benefits, and the emotional and spiritual sides of this practice too.

“It takes them away from their laptops and it gets them using their imaginations,” she raves.

It’s a wish for Nisha too that her little students learn “balance” in life and lots of wonderful de-stress tools as well as stretching their bodies – and imaginations.

Nic and Kelly Watt are creating a footprint in Auckland with their food and yoga offerings – and it’s wonderful to see kids are a part of their heart-filled focus.

Check out the timetable for Children’s Yoga classes at True Food & Yoga for either 3-5-year-olds and also 6-11-year-olds here:

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  • Rachel Grunwell is a mum, yoga teacher, marathoner, and magazine wellness columnist and writer. She regularly writes for many of NZ’s top media titles. She runs the InspiredHealth website (a lifestyle hub to inspire Kiwis to live well).
  • Follow InspiredHealth on Facebook &  Instagram

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Award-winning chef could win Rotorua Marathon

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By Rachel Grunwell

An award-winning chef who has cooked for Prime Minister John Key  may just snatch the Rotorua Marathon title on April 30.

Ciaran Faherty doesn’t even have a run coach. But he’s a top contender to take out first place.

He’s a relatively new name causing ripples on the running scene.

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Faherty, a 28-year-old chef who works at Circus Circus cafe in Mt Eden, Auckland,  says he started running three years ago as a hobby and because friends were into the sport. But he has only decided to take running “seriously” in the last few months after winning some races recently including: a 10km race in Albany, Taranaki’s Mountain to Surf marathon and the Huntly Half Marathon.

He ran the Taranaki event as a warm up for the Rotorua Marathon and ended up blitzing the course in 2 hours 21 minutes 58 seconds.

“I’ve won three events in just a few months… It’s so exciting,” says Faherty. “Actually, it’s a bit of an addiction now. But it’s a good addiction to have!”

He credits being “stubborn” and “dedicated” to long-distance training for his wins.

“I run a lot of days (in) excess of the marathon distance – mostly 50km days, twice a week during peak training. I’ve run a few 60km days in the past few weeks and the longest training day to date is 70km. I just love to run. Hopefully now, stamina won’t be an issue,” he says.

The 5’9 and 61kg athlete says he ran nine times weekly for his training build up (as well as fitting in some weights and kick-boxing). His biggest week was getting in 210km training miles. However, he’s in taper mode at the moment.

Faherty says his recent winning streak spurred him to take running seriously and so he switched from being a head chef at Auckland’s TriBeCa restaurant, working over 60-hours weekly, in January to taking up a chef role in Mt Eden where he only works 40-45 hours weekly.

This is so he can fit in more run training.

It was at TriBeCa that he cooked for John Key, MP Paula Bennett and others at a fundraiser dinner.

He met Key too.

“I introduced my chefs to him afterwards. He’s a nice chap. He was besotted by the quality of the food, which was lovely to hear,” says Faherty, who has previously won the Chef’s Table gold award for two consecutive years in Australia. He won these awards before he moved from Sydney to Auckland to live two years ago.

 

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Here’s an example of one of Faherty’s culinary creations.

He says swapping his award-winning chef’s career to focus more on run training took a lot of consideration, but he reckons the “gamble” was paying off  with his recent race wins.

Faherty says he’s also not a typical chef because “I eat very, very healthy food”.

He eats lots of grains, vegetables, “a hell of a lot of chicken” (about nine meals of this weekly) and loves making his own smoothies and bircher muesli.

On race day, he’ll use three gels and take a sip of water at every drink station.

The Irishman, who moved to New Zealand two years ago, has the quickest personal best marathon time of all the elite male runners currently entered into the Rotorua Marathon event. However, his best time was on a downhill course (The Mountain to Surf event).

So he will have tough competition with some other top male runners lining up beside him including: Stephen Lett, Tony Payne, Nick Horspool and Chris Sanson, to name some. While, the elite females who have entered so far inlcude: Klaartje van Schie, Katie Wyrill and Mel Aitken.

The Rotorua Marathon will be Faherty’s 12th marathon (he ran 8 last year). He runs with the YMCA run club and says he’s the second youngest member.

He also trains a lot with ultra runner friend Claire Walton, who gives him a bit of training advice – as he doesn’t have a run coach. (I mentioned he should get one!)

Meanwhile, Faherty says his big, ultimate run goal is the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and he says: ” I think it’s pretty realistic”.

Meanwhile, look out for him on race day wearing his sponsor’s logo (Bolero Drinks).

“Hopefully I’ll be ahead and I’ll be running scared,” he quips.

You can still enter the Rotorua Marathon. Click here

ps go into the draw to WIN a $150 prize package including a blender by entering a comp on our Facebook page.

Story penned by Rachel Grunwell, a wellbeing columnist for two magazines, yoga teacher (who specialises in ‘yoga for runners’) and blogger for www.inspiredhealth.co.nz.  She’s running the Rotorua Marathon too (her 12th marathon), guiding a blind runner as an Achilles charity ambassador.

Follow Rachel/Inspired Health on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter

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 Rachel’s last run-related blog was: Nutrition Tips for Runners doing the Rotorua Marathon – from 2 nutritionists and an elite runner.

The run blog was on TV3’s Mike McRobert’s entering into the Christchurch Marathon

Nutrition Tips for runners – from 3 experts

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Elite runner Ben Ruthe, pictured centre, & nutritionists Mikki Williden, left, & Sarah Sinclair, right, share top nutrition tips for runners.

 

Nutrition Tips for runners – from 3 experts

By Rachel Grunwell

What can you eat to best fuel your running?
It’s a question a lot of runners ponder. So I chatted with two qualified nutritionists who specialise in this field (who are also runners) – as well as an elite runner from the Bay of Plenty who has won some top titles.
I asked one nutritionist about what to do about the tapering period, and another about what to do on race day. While, the athlete gave his own perspective about what works best for him. He also made a good point that nutrition is an individual thing ultimately. I’ve interviewed many of the top nutritionists throughout NZ and it’s a point that these experts all hammered home too. However, here are some incredible tips and words of wisdom worth noting. I know I’ll be putting some of this great advice into action with my next event – the Rotorua Marathon on April 30 – the next major event on the NZ run calendar. Some of this advice may help you too – for any event. These experts are all awesome and I rate them all highly.

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FUEL AROUND TAPERING TIME
It’s close to tapering time for those participating in the Rotorua Marathon, like me. But use this information for any event you may have in the future. Firstly, tapering means backing off the training miles in the lead up to the race. This also means you shouldn’t be fuelling your body up as much as you might think…
It’s a “common mistake” around this time for runners to keep eating like we do while doing the big training miles.
Nutritionist Mikki Williden says it’s a real issue.
“Some people end up being heavy, lethargic and brain-fogged when they turn up to the start-line,” she says.
She knew of one guy who carb-loaded so much during a taper period that he ended up around 4kg heavier when he turned up at an event start-line.
“People overeat all the time when it comes to running,” says Williden.
So during the taper period – which can be a few weeks or as little as 10 days before an event depending on the individual – here are some of Williden’s tips:
Reduce your food intake over this time. You don’t need as much fuel because you are not using up as much energy.
2. Tap into your hunger cues; Do not eat to schedule.
3. If you suffer from nerves then reduce your vegetable intake a few days out from the event. Williden is usually an advocate of “10 serves of veg a day”, but around this time too much fibre can upset the gut and take up a lot of stomach space “which can make you feel bloated”.
4. Don’t take vast quantities of sports drinks leading up to a race. It can be too much liquid energy. “You’re better off making your own smoothies or having natural electrolytes like coconut water,” she adds.
5. Eat more frequently in the day before the event, but reduce the size of meals. This helps with having “a comfortable stomach”.

ps Williden says her favourite pre-race meals are things like Japanese (think salmon don), or a roast pork meal with kumara.

sarah sinclair

 
FUEL FOR RACE DAY
Raceday nutrition is different for everyone. So what works well for one person may not work well for another. Probably the most important advice for race day, is that you should practise your own race day nutrition while doing your training runs. And it is wise to experiment with different options as it can be a matter of trial and error to pinpoint what exactly works best for you.
Sarah Sinclair, a nutritionist who specialises in nutrition for runners through her business RUNtrition, recommends eating things on race day that are “nutrient dense, with complex carbs, with healthy fats and ideally a few antioxidants to boost (think whole foods and real foods where you can). And of course drink some fluid.”
Do not eat too much prior to a race – but make sure this meal is at least 2 hours before your race/event.
Lots of people find Oats/Oatmeal or a granola works well for them, whether or not you add milk/or yoghurt is an individual thing. Some things can upset the GI tract. “Bananas are generally always safe, a piece of plain (not too fibrous) toast with banana and nut butter works well too”.

5 top tips from Sinclair:
1. Practise your nutrition strategy well ahead of race day – the before and duringfoods/fuels.
2. Prep it the night before – at 4am you don’t want to be searching around for the last scraping of peanut butter.
3. For your event fuel – always take extra, just in case – or have supporters on the course with extra.
4. Just take a sip or two of water/fluid at each drink station -you do not need to drink the whole cup, over hydration can be as dangerous as dehydration.  And if you are not gunning for a sub 1:45h in a half or 3:20 full, walk the drink stations – I promise you, you will make up the time by not choking on your water.
5. Always eat within 30 minutes of your race/event finishing to help refuel the body and ensure optimum recovery and avoid alcohol however tempting until you have fully hydrated (i.e. at least gone to the bathroom after the race/event).

Ben Ruthe headshotAn Elite Runner’s perspective:

Meanwhile, I spoke with elite runner Ben Ruthe because I knew he would give a unique opinion here – and a fresh perspective too. And he’s worth listening to because he is a gun-runner (so is his gorgeous wife too, by the way). He’s the bloke who won the Auckland Marathon in 2008 and also has six national titles to his name (under various distances), to name just only a few of his incredible accomplishments.
The Bay of Plenty based runner says he honestly eats what he craves, but avoids excessive amounts “of things that aren’t good for you”. So to decode here, he means don’t drink alcohol like you are a party-animal, and don’t consume sugar like you might if you were Charlie from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory…
Ruthe strongly advises testing out race fuels well before race day so you know if they might upset your stomach.
He recommends to keep eating the foods you usually eat close up to an event too ie don’t change things radically. He says his father-in-law Trevor Wright (who represented England at the Commonwealth Games and could run a marathon in 2:12.28) used to love steak and chips and so he continued to enjoy eating this favourite meal right up to running his events. But it’s an individual thing, he adds.
But generally his approach is quite chilled. He reckons it can affect your performance if you focus too much on everything being precise food-wise around race day. “It can knock your confidence if you get hung up on everything being perfect,” he says.
He reckons rather than focusing too much on food on race day, rather focus on “enjoying” the event…

Meanwhile, you can enter the Rotorua Marathon by clicking here

  • Rachel Grunwell is a wellbeing columnist for 2 magazines, marathoner,  yoga teacher (who specialises in ‘yoga for runners’) and blogs on Inspiredhealth.co.nz .  She’s running the Rotorua Marathon this year (her 12th marathon). Her last run-related story was on TV3 presenter Mike McRoberts set to take part in the Christchurch Marathon, which was published in newspapers nationwide & on her blog. 
  • Follow Inspired Health on Facebook (for wellbeing inspiration + health-inspired giveaways) 
  • Follow Rachel on Instagram 

Rach 02

 

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Nutrition Tips for runners – from 3 experts

mikkiBen Ruthe headshot  sarah sinclair

Elite runner Ben Ruthe & nutritionists Mikki Williden, left, & Sarah Sinclair, right, share top tips for runners.

 

Nutrition Tips for runners – from 3 experts

By Rachel Grunwell

What can you eat to best fuel your running?
It’s a question a lot of runners ponder. So I chatted with two qualified nutritionists who specialise in this field (who are also runners) – as well as an elite runner from the Bay of Plenty who has won some top titles.
I asked one nutritionist about what to do about the tapering period, and another about what to do on race day. While, the athlete gave his own perspective about what works best for him. He also made a good point that nutrition is an individual thing ultimately. I’ve interviewed many of the top nutritionists throughout NZ and it’s a point that these experts all hammered home too. However, here are some incredible tips and words of wisdom worth noting. I know I’ll be putting some of this great advice into action with my next event – the Rotorua Marathon on April 30 – the next major event on the NZ run calendar. Some of this advice may help you too – for any event. These experts are all awesome and I rate them all highly.

mikki

FUEL AROUND TAPERING TIME
It’s close to tapering time for those participating in the Rotorua Marathon, like me. But use this information for any event you may have in the future. Firstly, tapering means backing off the training miles in the lead up to the race. This also means you shouldn’t be fuelling your body up as much as you might think…
It’s a “common mistake” around this time for runners to keep eating like we do while doing the big training miles.
Nutritionist Mikki Williden says it’s a real issue.
“Some people end up being heavy, lethargic and brain-fogged when they turn up to the start-line,” she says.
She knew of one guy who carb-loaded so much during a taper period that he ended up around 4kg heavier when he turned up at an event start-line.
“People overeat all the time when it comes to running,” says Williden.
So during the taper period – which can be a few weeks or as little as 10 days before an event depending on the individual – here are some of Williden’s tips:
Reduce your food intake over this time. You don’t need as much fuel because you are not using up as much energy.
2. Tap into your hunger cues; Do not eat to schedule.
3. If you suffer from nerves then reduce your vegetable intake a few days out from the event. Williden is usually an advocate of “10 serves of veg a day”, but around this time too much fibre can upset the gut and take up a lot of stomach space “which can make you feel bloated”.
4. Don’t take vast quantities of sports drinks leading up to a race. It can be too much liquid energy. “You’re better off making your own smoothies or having natural electrolytes like coconut water,” she adds.
5. Eat more frequently in the day before the event, but reduce the size of meals. This helps with having “a comfortable stomach”.

ps Williden says her favourite pre-race meals are things like Japanese (think salmon don), or a roast pork meal with kumara.

sarah sinclair

 
FUEL FOR RACE DAY
Raceday nutrition is different for everyone. So what works well for one person may not work well for another. Probably the most important advice for race day, is that you should practise your own race day nutrition while doing your training runs. And it is wise to experiment with different options as it can be a matter of trial and error to pinpoint what exactly works best for you.
Sarah Sinclair, a nutritionist who specialises in nutrition for runners through her business RUNtrition, recommends eating things on race day that are “nutrient dense, with complex carbs, with healthy fats and ideally a few antioxidants to boost (think whole foods and real foods where you can). And of course drink some fluid.”
Do not eat too much prior to a race – but make sure this meal is at least 2 hours before your race/event.
Lots of people find Oats/Oatmeal or a granola works well for them, whether or not you add milk/or yoghurt is an individual thing. Some things can upset the GI tract. “Bananas are generally always safe, a piece of plain (not too fibrous) toast with banana and nut butter works well too”.

5 top tips from Sinclair:
1. Practise your nutrition strategy well ahead of race day – the before and duringfoods/fuels.
2. Prep it the night before – at 4am you don’t want to be searching around for the last scraping of peanut butter.
3. For your event fuel – always take extra, just in case – or have supporters on the course with extra.
4. Just take a sip or two of water/fluid at each drink station -you do not need to drink the whole cup, over hydration can be as dangerous as dehydration.  And if you are not gunning for a sub 1:45h in a half or 3:20 full, walk the drink stations – I promise you, you will make up the time by not choking on your water.
5. Always eat within 30 minutes of your race/event finishing to help refuel the body and ensure optimum recovery and avoid alcohol however tempting until you have fully hydrated (i.e. at least gone to the bathroom after the race/event).

Ben Ruthe headshotAn Elite Runner’s perspective:

Meanwhile, I spoke with elite runner Ben Ruthe because I knew he would give a unique opinion here – and a fresh perspective too. And he’s worth listening to because he is a gun-runner (so is his gorgeous wife too, by the way). He’s the bloke who won the Auckland Marathon in 2008 and also has six national titles to his name (under various distances), to name just only a few of his incredible accomplishments.
The Bay of Plenty based runner says he honestly eats what he craves, but avoids excessive amounts “of things that aren’t good for you”. So to decode here, he means don’t drink alcohol like you are a party-animal, and don’t consume sugar like you might if you were Charlie from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory…
Ruthe strongly advises testing out race fuels well before race day so you know if they might upset your stomach.
He recommends to keep eating the foods you usually eat close up to an event too ie don’t change things radically. He says his father-in-law Trevor Wright (who represented England at the Commonwealth Games and could run a marathon in 2:12.28) used to love steak and chips and so he continued to enjoy eating this favourite meal right up to running his events. But it’s an individual thing, he adds.
But generally his approach is quite chilled. He reckons it can affect your performance if you focus too much on everything being precise food-wise around race day. “It can knock your confidence if you get hung up on everything being perfect,” he says.
He reckons rather than focusing too much on food on race day, rather focus on “enjoying” the event…

Meanwhile, you can enter the Rotorua Marathon by clicking here

  • Rachel Grunwell is a wellbeing columnist for 2 magazines, marathoner,  yoga teacher (who specialises in ‘yoga for runners’) and blogs on Inspiredhealth.co.nz .  She’s running the Rotorua Marathon this year (her 12th marathon). Her last run-related story was on TV3 presenter Mike McRoberts set to take part in the Christchurch Marathon, which was published in newspapers nationwide & on her blog. 
  • Follow Inspired Health on Facebook (for wellbeing inspiration + health-inspired giveaways) 
  • Follow Rachel on Instagram 

Rach 02