Hi there, welcome to my blog!
I am the first and current female FKT holder of the Via Alpina from Lichtenstein to the French border. This Swiss trail spans 390 km and crosses over 14 Swiss alpine passes. (While I try to stay humble about this, I am owning this title while I can! As soon as the snow melts in the Alps, some awesome lady is going to smash my record far out of my reach. 😊)
A geeky ultra-runner who dabbles in cycling and climbing; I love gear, apps and traveling. My Achilles heels are strength training and swimming. My other Achilles heel is my actual Achilles, which seems to be inclined to tendonitis.
Join me as I try to figure out how to be a normal, balanced, uninjured, ultra-running vegan who has time to write.
Want to get to know me even better?
Here are a few bits and pieces of my story:
- I was born and raised in South Africa.
- My family is filled with great runners. My father ran 89 km in 06:42:38. That is 4:30 min/km (or 7 min/mile for 56 miles)! My brother runs a 1:17 half-marathon. Unfortunately, I’m at the shallow end of the gene-pool in regard to speed.
- In high school, I was a terrible runner and even worse hockey player. Instead, I routinely cycled 150 km on a weekend with my dad and brother.
- I moved to the Netherlands in 2013. Six months before I had started running. (1st of January 2013)
- While I ran a bit in South Africa, moving to the Netherlands and being surrounded by forest trails have given me the opportunity and safety to expand my running obsession.
- I am a software engineer and program in an obscure language called X++.
- I didn’t run the first half marathon I entered. I didn’t make time to train because I discovered the series Battlestar Galactica and watched all 76 episodes.
- Since 2013 I have lost 16 kg by running, stressing and eating fewer Dutch stroopwafels.
- I got back into cycling in 2016 and I replaced my eBay bike with a Canyon Endurance race bike one year later.
- I also didn’t run the first marathon I entered. I had an Achilles injury after my first 30 km training run. I eventually ran my first marathon in Porto in 2017.
- I’ve swum 4 open water swimming events ranging between 1 km and 1 mile. All of them were in South Africa and I did all of them because of peer pressure.
- My 2020 new year’s resolution was to start climbing. I took a belay course in January and by August was leading 5ish routes indoors.
- If I had time and space for a dog, I would get a Rhodesian Ridgeback. They are stubborn (like me) and can run a marathon while keeping up with a horse (unlike me).
- Since most races and traveling plans were canceled in 2020, I passed the time by completing the 390 km Via Alpina and set the female unsupported running record.
- My longest run with no sleep is 157 km on a flat 1 km loop; again I blame peer pressure.
Welcome to my blog. I would love to hear from you in the comments!