Nedbank Runified Virtual #2 - Page 19

The various branches of the Nedbank Running Club around South Africa offer a national network of clubs that cater to every level of athlete , from world class elites to back-of-pack socialites , but in these challenging times of COVID restrictions , all the branches have had to find a ‘ Plan B ’ in order to keep things running .
Nedbank Running Club Nelspruit LVCC ( Mpumalanga )
COVID Plan B …
Being a smaller running club , when restrictions eased the club was able to commence their real life time trials , and continued to do so until the third wave struck , which put club activities on hold . Throughout , the club has used its WhatsApp group to keep runners motivated and informed of all important notices .
The club hosts an annual marathon , The Ehlanzeni Marathon , but due to restrictions the live event could not be held . The club decided this would be the entry into the Virtual race world and took the event virtual , running it through Strava as many races have been doing . All entries came with a free tee , a welcome motivator as many found their cupboards rather bare of new race shirts .
This year the club was incredibly excited to be given the go-ahead from ASA to host its 30th edition of the Hall ’ s Half Marathon , which sold out a few hours after opening . Unfortunately , with the third wave , the club has had to postpone the race to the 4th of September , but the hope is that they will be able to increase numbers to 500 , meaning they can re-open entries . Keep an eye on their Facebook page for more info !
Home Base : The Lowveld Country Club , 1 Aurora Street , Steiltes , Neslpruit
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Nedbank Running Club Tshwane ( Gauteng North )
COVID Plan B …
In the first lockdown , the club ran a virtual challenge aimed at improving times over 5km , 10km or 21km distances . This challenge saw 130 runners from all over the world taking part ! Time trials went virtual as well , and the club runs competitions aimed specifically at its time trial runners , with lucky draw prizes awarded each quarter , while the male and female runners that complete the most weekly time trials win Nike running shoes .
Getting into the Comrades Marathon spirit this past June , the club hosted a Comrades Run , with 48 members tackling a 21km route with three water points . This ‘ real race ’ experience even included an amazing goodie bag containing Biogen , Bavaria and FutureLife products . Most of the club ’ s profits and excess products are presented to the Bramley Children ’ s Home near
Groenkloof , and funds raised by the Comrades run also went to the home .
Home Base : CBC Old Boys Club , 78 George Storrar Drive , Groenkloof , Pretoria
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When restrictions are lifted again , the club will offer both ‘ real ’ and virtual time trials , to make it as inclusive as possible , and once members can interact safely again , a monthly braai after a time trial will be added , as well as a 10km run every third month with a free post-run breakfast . Until then , the club is staying connected through its social channels , weekly e-mails and SMS messages .
This club has its own development sub-club , Skosana Development Club , run by ASA Road Running Commission Chairperson Enoch Skosana . Situated in Pretoria West , it has its own time trials , training runs and track sessions . This club focuses on athletes aged 10 to 18 , who concentrate on track and cross country , but any member of the NRC in Tshwane may attend their training sessions .
Nedbank Running Club Klerksdorp ( Central North West )
COVID Plan B …
Although this club is regarded as NRC ’ s flagship development club , under the guidance of Pio Mpolokeng , it also has a huge social club in Schweizer Reinecke , which is chaired by Susna Du Plessis and a separate committee . Before lockdown , this branch had more than 70 members and was very active , even hosted its own road race , time trials and functions .
The development club trains its runners for both cross country and track events , with Pio taking the lead in training the younger generation to become the best runners that they can be , and giving
them the chance to change their socio-economic circumstances through the sport . The elite squad does specialised training sessions , which are managed in smaller groups , and once a week they also host time trials as well as longer runs , with all runs seconded by the team to provide a safe environment for runners to train in .
While the social contingent is not a large focus of this club , it does offer a long run once a month for social runners to get in the distance they need , which has proven popular , given that there have been no races in a long time due to COVID-19 .
Home Base : Jouberton , Klerksdorp
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