Going the Extra Mile
Nedbank Running Club Pretoria
For a running club to be truly successful , it needs to have a few members who will go the extra mile to make the club a success , to make runners feel welcome , and to help other runners . This applies to the NRC Pretoria , too , and Club Manager , Jaqueline Rencontre says they are fortunate to have six runners who have helped the club grow , not only during COVID times , but also prior to 25 March 2020 .
“ Club Secretary Francois Venter and his partner , Jannie van der Walt , are two of those at the Pretoria NRC who have been stalwarts of the club for years ,” says Jaqueline . Francois is an auditor by profession , while Jannie is a broker , are both always in the forefront of organising social events for the club , and also encourage club members to join the Saturday group run , sending updates as to when and where to meet , what route will be taken and what can be expected in terms of refreshments after the run . “ The Saturday runs have evolved to the extent that most of those who join in are not only ‘ club mates ,’ but have also become good friends .”
“ Another two that stand out are Michael Lenhoff and Ingrid Koster , who have consistently helped NRC Pretoria club members in improving their running by hosting training sessions at the CBC Old Boys Grounds in Pretoria ,” she adds . As Michael is a paramedic by profession , and works shifts , the sessions at CBC are either on a Tuesday or a Thursday , depending on when his shifts allow him to be at the sessions .
Meanwhile , Ingrid and Jannie have also been inspirational in keeping the club members active and motivated during the long months of COVID restrictions . They have encouraged their fellow club members to run time trials to keep their racing edge , and also to keep chasing goals . Leading by example , the two attended the most virtual time trials , and when running in groups was allowed again , also attended the ‘ live ’ time trials . For their efforts , they were both rewarded with a pair of Nike shoes by the club .
Of course , you will also find real characters at every club , and the Pretoria club has two of those in Thompson Magagane and Sguda Sibandi . After the hard lockdown , the pair motivated and pushed each other to improve their running times , and when NRC Pretoria put on its Improve Your Best Time
Challenge , the pair took on the challenge with great relish .
Club members had to try to improve their best time by 10 % over a four-week period , by running the same distance on four consecutive Thursdays in a time trial-like challenge . In the end , Thompson and Sguda were crowned champions of the challenge , having improved their 10km times by 11.68 % and 11.60 % respectively . “ Both Thompson and Sguda ran 10km as their goal distance , and while Thompson went from 41:54 in his first 10km , to 37:04 in his final ‘ race ,’ Sguda went from 46:06 to 40:47 ,” says Jacqueline . “ It was a fun , motivating and very satisfying challenge for all members !”
The Nedbank Running Club has a branch near you , and we look forward to welcoming you all , so join us and become a part of the Nedbank running family ! To find out more , visit www . nedbankrunningclub . co . za or call 012 541 0577 .