Nedbank Runified Virtual #2 - Page 20

NEDBANK CLUBS
Home Base : Parow Athletics Track , 1 De Grendel Road , Parow North , Cape Town
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Nedbank Running Club Cape Town ( Western Province )
COVID Plan B …
This club came out of hard lockdown motivated to provide their runners with the thing they were missing the most , races ! That saw the club launch a 10km race series for members only , limited to 50 runners , and spots filled up quickly , but what was most surprising was the response from runners outside the club , begging and pleading to be included . These races were run along the same lines as pre-COVID events , offering prize money and incentives for beating target times , as well as routes that allowed proper racing .
Club Chairperson , Chantel Simpson , says the response to these races was fantastic . Not only did it give the elite runners a way to earn some money , it also gave social members a chance to run in a competitive environment , keeping them motivated and wanting more . In fact , thanks to the series , the club ’ s membership has actually increased during lockdown !
“ The most amazing thing that has come out of this series , is the sense of community we have in our club ,” says Chantel . “ It has created a great social circle , and whether you are an elite runner or a backmarker , you have the support of everyone , because we have become an intimate family unit .”
The club uses WhatsApp groups , emailers and social media to make sure all members are engaged and involved . This includes news about this year ’ s Runified Challenge , and the members are hungry to race and set themselves new challenges . Chantel adds that these virtual challenges really highlight the amazing commitment and discipline of the runners , especially those running a marathon on their own , and the Runified Challenge gives them the extra push that they need .
Nedbank Running Club George ( South Western Districts )
COVID Plan B …
This club follows a simple approach to life : “ We let nothing get us down ,” and proactive in the face of adversity should be the club motto , because from January to June this year , the club has hosted an impressive 13 virtual challenges !
Home Base : NRC Club House , Meent Street , Heather Park , George
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Running a complete series for its members , the club hosted two to three races per month , offering 10km and 21km routes . After each race , results were tallied and runners were awarded points according to their positions , with the top five each month awarded prizes , and there were also spot prizes for those doing the series more socially . Furthermore , to make it truly special , runners who completed 10 of the 13 races also received a medal from the club , which was sent to them free of charge !
No surprise that the club saw a healthy average of 120 runners participating per race , and had a total of 178 runners compete in the series . Also , following the success of this first series , the club is now running another series , all to keep the members motivated and running !
The club also went all-out for this year ’ s Virtual Two Ocean ’ s Marathon , marking out a route , organising water tables and seconding for all runners taking part , and even organising prizes . It was a big event , where members could run together and create a bit of race vibe .
The club ’ s social pages are full of pictures of runners doing what they love , running together , safely , but socially distanced , of course . As club CEO Danie Raubenheimer says , “ We don ’ t let COVID get us down , we actively encourage runners to keep active .”
Nedbank Running Club Port Elizabeth ( Eastern Province )
Home Base : Kabega Primary School , Brabant Street , Kabega Park , Port Elizabeth
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COVID Plan B …
This was the organising club behind the very successful Nedbank Runified 50km IAU World Record attempt in May , having just helped ASA host the SA 21km Champs two weeks earlier . Under the leadership of Chairperson Irene Van Eeden , who is also the Vice-chair of EPA , the club put on a world class event in a very short lead-time , showing once again that one of its strengths is to organise great races .
This club has a smaller membership , so it has been able to continue with time trials , as the turn-out is usually around 15 runners , and they make sure to keep socially distanced . There are small running groups that get together for longer runs , which works well , as members live in different areas and cover different mileage in training , so there is something for everyone .
Irene explains that Gqeberha has been lucky during lockdown , with a lot of events still taking place . She adds that the Runified virtual series last year acted as a good motivator , and this year members are signing up to be part of it again . Last but not least , the club has a very active WhatsApp group and a Facebook page to keep members informed and motivated .
18 NEDBANK RUNIFIED VIRTUAL RUN