Namib Race Blogs 2021

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Mabasa Mubatapasango
Expedition Foods feedback

16 November 2021 06:03 am (GMT+02:00) Harare, Pretoria

Hi Everyone,

I am going to try and give an account of how I found Expedition Foods during the epic Namib race. I would give them a 110% for a lot of reasons some of which I'm going to explain below:

One thing I got to learn about the RTP race is that you should always train with 90% of the things you will use during the actual race. The reason is the level of precision you need to have in terms of salts, electrolytes intake, fluids intake and above all the art of using the food as fuel. The physical demands of the race call for a special brand of the meal, one that is easy to prepare, fill your belly and make you want another meal. I am glad to share that for me it was Expedition Foods.

So why did I start explaining about the whole 90% training and why did give them 110%, you might wonder. Here is why. I am staying in Namibia, which falls under the African continent, being an African, there are some meals that we call too light and some too heavy. in short, we measure the food calories according to the size of the meal. I have grown to learn that is called overeating since the previous point goes along with the one that says, ' You need to finish everything that is on your plate.' On top of that, there are a lot of meals that naturally do not go well with my or my African stomach. Having said that, all this always bothered me during the training as I knew that shipping stuff to Africa/ Namibia would take forever. I had the fear that I am not training with the food I am going to use during the training. Thoughts of the food being rejected by my system were gathering traction as we drew closer to the race, especially after considering the amount of hard work I put in. So to give you insight, 24 October 2021 was my first time enjoying Expedition Foods. I think it was a strawberry flavoured porridge that I took. My worries were swept by the flavour that at the beginning of stage one, I had enough energy to cover the uphills and make it to camp 2. Since I put my meals in a zip bag, I can't remember the flavour names. All I am positive about is that they were 800kcal means with my favourite meal being rice with chicken and some green vegetables. At each stage, I would look forward to my meals. The quick nature of preparing the meals helped during the ling stage where I fixed a quick meal and within a short period after my consumption, I felt stronger and started marching towards the finish line(see image).

 

Fast forward, I finished without issues and I would recommend Expedition Foods to any 4 deserts runners, campers and explorers. 

 

Thank you for #FuelingCgampions.

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Mabasa Mubatapasango
Article dedicated to all newbies

13 November 2021 10:42 pm (GMT+02:00) Harare, Pretoria

Hi Everyone,

I am sitting in my favourite coffee shop in Swakopmund enjoying the best service in town, thank you Brew and Bristles. Looking through the window, I noticed the amazing weather, dark grey clouds covering the beautiful skies causing me to revisit the Namib race camp 2 (Don't blame me, the camps were just too beautiful not to mention). Having completed the Namib race 2021 race, there is a lot that I learnt along the long journey and would like to share with everyone. This is not to say I am a superhero or professional to give advice but take this as a letter coming from someone who does not want you to fall into some obvious holes. Hence this writing is targeted to all newbies or multi-stage first-timers. 

In all your getting from this, take out the 2 messages from me:

i. KNOW WHO YOU ARE - accept your fitness level by respecting your weaknesses whilst concentrating on your Strengths.

ii. BE ONE WITH YOUR PACK. - Run(hills, flats, trails) with your pack, walk with your pack, sleep with your pack, visit friends with your pack and hit the bar with your pack. lol

 I shall try and explain why these 2 are important later.

 Background

The 4 Deserts Ultramarathon Series is widely recognized as the most prestigious outdoor footrace series in the world. This is a good start that set my running tempo and I used this line to measure the amount of time and effort I needed to put in order to make it to the start line. This does not mean it's impossible to complete the race but simply states that one needs to align with hard work to comfortably finish whether walking or running. This article is mainly targeted at the Namib Race edition.

I summed up the race challenges based on 2 things:

i. The Variables  - Variables are things that will play with you throughout the race, for example, emotions, sleep patterns, mindset etc.

ii. Constants - Things that will stay with you throughout the race like blisters, PAIN, Pack Weight and meals.

PS: I shall constantly refer to these 2 key things.

Expectations

I believe we all have a story leading to the RTP races. As we train we're mainly consumed with matching our expectations during the training to the race outcome. I remember during training, I would constantly visualise crossing the finish line and celebrating. I would even picture my last stage outro pose and speech but I have come to learn that things happen so fast during the race. I expected to be this lone runner cruising all by myself, I had figured in my head the survival methods till I finish the race. As a newbie, this line of thinking is very normal as we often spend time training by ourselves that we think all the pressure is yours to handle. I do have good news for you, that you're not alone when it comes to the RTP. Take it as running with a family around you. Left, right and centre there is always someone cheering, encouraging you and willing to crash the course with you. 

As for me, it was in stage 1, in my head I had played out how the stage was going to end and that's a variable I was playing with. I went blowing steam from the start, I thought everybody was in the racing gear. They were in the racing gear by the way but different strategies. Jeff, who later finished 4th was to my right filming and he shouted," Yo! Mabasa-remember to take it slow." This was a reminder of a conversation we had the previous night where he was sharing his experiences with me. Told you an RTP family member is waiting to help you, right!! As I approached around 3.6km that is around 2 miles, I slid in the mud puddle and felt the left knee ITB or runners knee saying," hello my old friend." This caused me to change my whole game plan to a maintenance approach. My expectations for stage 1 were affected but as a runner, I grew up to be, I learned the art of fashioning my goal to suit the current situation. I stopped and regrouped immediately. One by one athletes started passing me, oh that's a constant by the way. As I passed CP1 to CP 2, I never felt the ITB again but I was then introduced to the next challenge - Uncle cramps.

Through the excitement of the race, I wasn't taking enough fluids, adding to that I didn't take hid of the major constant - my 14kg Pack. Two weeks before the race I started my taper, I didn't lift that pack until it was 2 days to the start line so as I was running I felt it was drawing me back hence BE ONE WITH YOUR PACK. I expected that since at one point in my life I pushed 110km so 15kg would be nothing and it proved otherwise. This took a toll on me as I passed CP2 and for a second I felt like I had failed and my fear of not finishing kicked it. Adding to that I never expected myself to be not running and in other words to be walking. As I looked back, I saw a gentlemen approach slowly towards my direction. He looked so experienced than me and I decided to wait for him. His name is Max, we walked/ran together and marched towards camp 2. Upon arrival, I felt every muscle aching and as I got into the camp all excited, I received some free advice from Samantha. She showed me some recovery exercises and running postures. I believe she had read my body language that it was compensating to the weight of my pack thereby straining my hamstrings more.

Recommendation: Don't be ashamed to walk if it calls or join a group of individuals. You're not alone. Lower your expectations if you have to.

Training

As a newbie, training is one area we either under or overdo. I am not judging but if you are like me who started with a negative score, you will tend to spend more time trying to balance the scale. I was 110kg and when I started with my training, all I wanted to do was to be able to run. I spent a lot of hours, days, weeks and months pounding the pavements, going through hills to gain the necessary strength to run. After having gained these, I introduced weight training. As a newbie, you will feel like you're starting all over again. My recommendation for this is that train with the pack you're going to race with. There is a temptation of ditching the big pack for a small camelback but please don't fall into the trap. Use the pack you're going to race with. The pack is a major constant that can be a make or break during the race. The main goal for the training is to be able to define who you are. If you know who you are and your limits, you're able to fashion your strategy accordingly. Some guys are fast, slow guys, guys who will pass you but the ultimate constant is YOU. As for the pack options, check out this link: https://www.racingtheplanetstore.com/collections/race-equipment-backpack

The training part also includes a strict diet, please do not neglect this. RTP can assist with the recommendations of some dieticians. I used the running plans from the RTP website. Here is a link to assist: https://www.racingtheplanet.com/racingtheplanet-4-deserts-beginner-training-plan

Recommendation: Get a professional coach and follow a plan ie running and diet.

 

Race In general:

The one thing I will guarantee you as a newbie is the overwhelming availability of support. Days leading to the race I felt anxious thinking I was the only newbie around. I got to learn that we were a lot of newbies getting to know each other. This made me feel at home as every second there would be someone new introducing themselves and sharing stories. If you are lucky like in my case, you'll bump into a gentleman called Atul. He is such a legend when it comes to storytelling and has dozens of them. For a second I thought he was part of the welcome committee lol.

Be mindful of the Constants and Variables. At the end of it all, it will be a battle between these two. The one who has the edge on these elements tends to score more.

The race is well guided with the RTP providing exceptional hospitality. Ask them any question, even the obvious one and they will be able to answer you with the highest level of articulation and satisfaction. My conclusion when it comes to the race is that, apart from your training, the race is designed for you to succeed, win and Finish. All help, support and guidance are readily available. It's more like being allowed to use the internet during a physics, chemistry or calculus exam.

i. Equipment

Equipment falls under constants and as such the trick is to lower the grams or the weight. They are broken down into 2 i.e Mandatory and Optional.

Since this is a constant, it is worth investing in super ultra gear if one can afford it or it is closer to shops that sell them. Unfortunately, on this side of the world, the lightest of things I got were still too heavy. For example, my sleeping bag was 850g and from my research one can get anything under 650grams. This might sound like a small difference but trust me, in these races every gram counts.

Here is a link to the Equipment list: https://www.racingtheplanet.com/namibrace/equipment

 

Here is a link to packing the pack: https://www.facebook.com/1099420474/videos/841513436471759/

 

ii. Race strategy: Different strategies are depending on what you want to do. i.e walk the race or run the race. If you're going for the former, I recommend investing in walking sticks. Also, take some time to train how to walk for a minimum of an hour at a certain pace. As for the latter, I recommend you understand the type of runner you are, your style and your limits. There will be guys who are faster than you, fashion your challenge according to your pace limits.

iii. Race community: I'm sure I mentioned this a thousand times now-You're not alone. There is an RTP community out there rooting for you. Take this as a confidence boost, it's all around you from the management, competitors, local team, support team and above all the virtual family. As a newbie, there won't be any reference points so you will be relying on feedback and that I assure you, you will get an overdose of it.

iv. Race Recovery: Recovery is a constant that you'll need to do. After every stage, I recommend you take some time to nap, raise your legs and have a recovery system in place. I won't talk about recovery juices at this time but I recommend that you find what's best for you. As for me, I had trained my body to dive into cup-a-soup first before my main recovery juice. This was followed by a good nap with legs raised on a platform.

v. Race injury - The most important thing is to take care of yourself. Fortunately, this edition of the race finished without any major injury for me and most around. However, various injuries occur during these races that range from ITBs, ACL etc. 

vi. Race food - I can not stress this more. Food is your fuel and you need the best brand in the business. I recommend Expedition Foods. https://expeditionfoods.com

https://expeditionfoods.com/pages/benefits-of-freeze-dried-food

 

Freeze-drying food is the most successful method of preservation, making it taste better, look better, weigh less and last longer.  We use the best process globally to produce freeze-dried meals cooked using the freshest ingredients that can be rehydrated in minutes.  Expedition Foods meals are packed full of the best ingredients, freeze-dried at their freshest.

Expedition Foods offers 22 different meals and 4 desserts and a choice of serving sizes with our High Energy (800+ kcal), Regular Serving (450 kcal) and Extreme Energy or Regular Serving for Two (1000 kcal) ranges.  They offer meals to suit everyone’s needs with vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free and dairy-free meals available.

vii. Sleeping - As a newbie, I gathered that it's "normal" to be anxious thereby affecting your sleep. During my training leading to the Namib race, I tracked my sleep pattern and realise that on average my deep sleep is between 3 to 5 hours. This helped me in the race because I struggled with sleep. I think the idea of not completing the race consumed me. On average, I managed an average of 1.5 hours of deep sleep and 3-4 hours total sleep every night. The night before the final stage was the worst, I was up all night. 

recommendations: Visit a sleep lab or track your sleep pattern to learn of your sleep ranges. Get a light yet comfortable sleeping bag, map and a pillow(inflatable). Your body needs that comfort to properly recover.

viii. The Namib Course - The Namib race has the most amazing and unique views. The terrain range is close to none, I would be right to call the Namib desert a cradle of Africa. In the words of the legendary course director Carlos, " Run and when it's tough just lift your head and marvel at nature." 

Please also note that Uphills are normal and our downhill is like this / follow @mabassafinish on Instagram to get what this means.

Looking forward - Just like any other race it comes to an end but the beauty about the RTP is that you become a family. RTP has social media platforms that will keep you engaged all the time and these platforms are full of amazing people.

Currently, I'm trying to secure some partnerships that I will work with for the last remaining races ??.

 

Conclusion:

You might be training as an individual wherever you are in the world but YOU'RE GOING TO RACE WITH ALL THE SUPPORT & CHEERING YOU NEED. 

Attachment: Some images that are associated with the article.

 

"I learned patience, perseverance, and dedication. Now I really know myself, and I know my voice. It's a voice of pain and victory."

Anthony Hamilton

 

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Mabasa Mubatapasango
Vote of thanks

02 November 2021 02:47 pm (GMT+02:00) Harare, Pretoria

On 30 October I officially became a Namib Race Finisher. Trying to wrap around the idea that I survived the 250km in the oldest desert under the harshest of conditions is out of this world. My story did not start yesterday but 3 years ago when I got inspired by the @racingtheplanet race whilst doing the satellite. It was more like the race found and called me out. Back then if someone had said, "you will attempt the race and complete, "I would just punch them and call label them CRAZY. A term I used to refer to athletes. So today I want to officially apologize for calling them CRAZY. There is a special reason why they trained so hard, why they put their bodies to the limits and above everything why they keep doing it again. Unfortunately, it's a road that only 1 person can take and a journey that will transform your life forever. Even if I explain it now you will never get it.
It takes a village they say, a lot of people assisted me to cross the finishing line and allow me to dedicate the special medal to you. To my Lord for providing unlimited strength, to my beautiful wife @Susan for everything?, to @racingtheplanet team (@marykgadams @samanthafanshawe @zeanamarie @4desertsuk @Nick @Ritta @Bev) for such an amazing and well-organized race. To @expeditionfoods for fueling me, To @swakop_physios for the awesome physio and encouragement, to @footworx, to @ccordogan, @animswartcoaching and the crazy American @ultramikewilliams for scheduling meetings at convenient times ie 4 PM
in America forgetting I am 7 hours ahead lol. @juliewidd and @adam. The list is way too long but I won't forget my fans and followers.
Lastly, I wanna challenge you to transform your life. Visit www.racingtheplanet.com, sign up for one of their races and thank me later.

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Mabasa Mubatapasango
Final stage - Dash across the dunes

30 October 2021 02:43 pm (GMT+02:00) Harare, Pretoria

There is something about knowing your family is on the other side that gives you the drive to want to unite with them. I knew today would be the last day of an awesome race week. I spent the whole night twisting and turning. At some point, I took to writing about the race, an act that I had suddenly picked during stage 2. I found myself thinking about what had transpired from camp 1 to the long march. I was also happy that I had managed to complete this amazing race. 

I went outside to warm myself by the fire, a few minutes later, a couple of athletes came to join me and we all agreed that sleep wasn't kind to us. 

 

Fast forward to the start line, I joined the 9.15 am start group. I had set it in my heart that I'm just going to sprint and meet my family. As soon as the count down was done, I went full throttle in the dunes and 30 minutes later I saw the bright green banner. This was the moment I have been dreaming of, and I drew closer, I collected that a small figure was headed in my direction with arms wide open. "Mikyla," I screamed, then I ran even faster, I held her hand and we crossed the line together. Sam was there to give me my precious medal. 

We started congratulating each other as athletes and had some refreshments. To top it up I received the Spirit Award, something I will treasure for the rest of my life. 

 

Thank you to Racing the Planet, Mary, Sam, Zeana, Nick and Riitta for the awesome race. I have gained new friends, stories and memories.

 

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Mabasa Mubatapasango
Stage 5 - The Long march

28 October 2021 01:02 pm (GMT+02:00) Harare, Pretoria

Hello everyone,

Pure class and execution of a plan was the order of the day. After having run back to back marathons, it was time for the Namib desert to throw all its best obstacles aimed at defeating us. I knew for sure that exhaustion and heat would play a big role in seeing me down. Before we get into detail, allow me to stress out one point: the Namib desert is a tough and grueling hunting ground for any person who wish to challenge their limit. This makes it so perfect for RTP to host the race as this defines the" ultimate Race. "
Back to my story, as usual I woke up 4.30am and started pondering on the best plan for this long March. I knew my weakness of not being able to run with a headlamp which I had discovered during my training period. Let me also put it this way, the terrain in the desert makes it impossible to pick up a rhythm during the night and even with the brightest of lights, one is bound to stumble twice every 3km (Talking from experience ?) . So I deviced a strategy to try make sure I finished the run before sunset. The only thing that was standing my way was the mighty climb of the Rossing mountain, according to the elevation gains posted by Carlos, I knew that this was the main peak before the gradual decline towards the sea. So therefore my pace plan/strategy was to keep up as best as could with the top runners and then eventually fall back. We will come back to that part later.

As usual, I did my morning breakfast and stretching routine etc and as I was getting into the groove, I heard Sam's voice that we were now accustomed to, "Goood morning runners, this is your first wakeup call. It's 7.15am We shall have our first pre race briefing in 15 minutes." As I looked around I noticed most competitors were already going through their paces, some were already filling up their bottles, the two ladies to my right were busy catching up on updates and the one gentleman had just missed the wake up call looked puzzled by something.
7.30am Sam then updated us on the course and race leaders etc. It was time for us go to the start line and I was a bit early than usual. I had recalled from one book I read that said, "He who Is prepared for battle will Show up first." As I was drifting through my thoughts my tent mates Ahmed and Ayel came running towards me and said something that calmed my nerves, "Mabasa!, " Ayel said "How about a selfie of the three of us? " Obviously I replied with a big smile, who doesn't want a selfie with his tent buddies.. Just as we were finding the perfect background, we realised it was time to ready and go! The usual front runners, Rob, Ben, Vlad, Jeff from Canada and the Norwegian couple went shooting towards the Rossing mountain. Remember I had said I will come back to that part, for me that's the best part cause I was part of that group?. My plan was now in motion and one step at a time we marched together towards CP 1 which was 10km away. I had done this before but this time it was different, I had to hang on for longer. I was observing how they were managing their cadence, how the held up their packs, their water intake, how they we relaxed and finally how they we picking their landing lines. It was a pure class of art to say the least. Fast forward into the charge towards CP1, Jeff led the way and yours truly was in second position ?. I don't know if they did it deliberately but it really boosted my spirits so therefore, let me officially announce that 28 October 2021 during the long March I arrived second at CP 1 infront of the race leaders ?.

As they left the check point, I let them be and pulled my pace back as I had successfully completed stage 1 of my plan. I looked back and noticed the charging group slowly making their way towards my direction. I maintained this healthy lead until the base of the mountain where Alveres overtook me. The steep ascent demanded many answers from each competitor and I heard later on that a few drops were left at the checkpoint 1.

I made it on top where I was greeted by a cool breeze and friendly smiles from the checkpoint team. They refilled my water bottles and warmed me of the technical downhill that was to follow.

I loved the technical downhill and soaked every moment of it. For a second I thought I was a superhero or Spiderman. There were two volunteers waiting to assist incase a competitor falls, but as far as I remember, I gave them a show to remember because they kept on saying "Awesome!" . CP 2 to CP 3 was much of a standard run. I looked back more than 30 times and couldn't locate any followers. At CP 3 Ken greeted me with a high five, which confirmed that I was still strong. Best part at CP 3 was the handing of the coke... Nothing beats a coke in the middle of the desert, thank you RTP.

CP 3 to CP 4,
This phase was just a gentle descent with small uphills. We were tasked to go through a small tunnel which I enjoyed doing by the way. I arrived 12.47pm at CP4 where CP captain Jon helped me with some quick math to track if I was still on time to make it before sunset. CP 4 to 5 was pretty much the same ups and downs. I was getting weaker by the step and figured I needed to have lunch at CP5.

CP 5

It had Been 4 to 5 hours running by myself, something I am used to though. I then turn a corner and realised the CP 5 was just 500m away which came as a relief. I fixed myself a quick Expedition Foods lunch which really tasted nice. I then picked my pack and headed for CP 6 which was another 10 km away. This time round, the heat had mounted as the sun was now directly in front of me. I pushed through slowly towards the camp navigation myself in the ups and downs of the desert. It took me around 70 minutes to reach CP 6 and was welcomed by Sarah, Sam and Oliver. They were excited to see me and showed signs of worry as they noticed that I had hardly sipped my water. What had actually happened was, upon reaching CP5, I had taken in 4 x 750 ml of water to balance my acqua scale and on top of that I had a full meal. This caused me to struggle a bit to move so I decided that I won't take in anymore and by the time I reached CP 6 I was still 100 % OK. Sam also highlighted that there was not going to be any water points, which I knew was not going to be a problem as the temperatures were deeping.

The last 4km was more of a walk and shuffle for me cause I knew I was closer to the main camp. "One kilometer to go!, "a voice from behind the dunes shouted. This rejuvenated me and a jog rose within me, the jog turned into a sprint and next thing I saw was so heart touching, two individuals running toward me with flags and half the camp screaming my name to keep going.. I pushed so hard to equal the chants and in a super hero stance, I then crossed the finish line in 8th place.

Wait... "I am just 10km away from realizing my dream? " plus an extra rest day ?

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Mabasa Mubatapasango
Stage 4

27 October 2021 08:45 pm (GMT+01:00) West Central Africa

 Hello everyone.
 
It was a good day for me here in the desert. After yesterday's brutality I thought today was going to be tougher but the opposite proved to be true.
 
It all started in the morning where ii woke up feeling stronger and determined to finish early. As soon as Sam finished the count down, I was already on the heals of the leading pack. I hung on with them until checkpoint 1. From check point 1 to Check point 3, I was basically shuffling by myself enjoying some cool country music. I slowed down a bit so as to save energy for the long march. I steadily soldiered until I reached  camp 4 where I was greeted with large cheers.
 
Looking forward, I am expectant of doing well during the long march and my goal is to finish before sunset.
 
Cheers everyone!

Comments: Total (6) comments

Mabasa Mubatapasango

Posted On: 17 Nov 2021 01:30 am

Thank you so much guys for all the amazing SUPPORT. I wouldn't have done it without you. Much Appreciated.

Mike Mubatapasango

Posted On: 29 Oct 2021 07:15 am

Doing good bra l can see keep it up and stay strong until you Finish. Good luck 💪

Colin Suckling

Posted On: 29 Oct 2021 05:20 am

Mabasa Simply the best. Watching from the comfort of my desk nothing but admiration for you. Wish i was there to see you at the finish line. A journey 2 years in the making. From couch potato to elite athlete. You will inspire others Cheers and enjoy your new status. 4 Desert finisher. From your Hawk brother down under. Colin

Carmen CORDOGAN

Posted On: 28 Oct 2021 03:57 pm

Wohoo!! You are awesome Mabasa!! Good decisions on the trails! Never doubt ! Trust all your training ! You are conquering ! You are so strong ! I am so happy seeing your photos and seeing your spirit soaring ! Remember our lion song back then? You go ! Bravo !!! C

Zeana Haroun

Posted On: 28 Oct 2021 03:33 am

Awesome, way to push it but also very smart to take a step back. Save a bit for the long the Long March. I know you've got it in you, you are a fighter and you are also enjoying this - well at least parts of it!!! Keep it up!!

Blessing Marangadzva

Posted On: 27 Oct 2021 09:20 pm

Hello,, we are happy to know it was a good day for you, we are cheering you all the way, you are doing very well, putting Zim on the map, we are proud of you, keep on, and all the best, B
Mabasa Mubatapasango
Brutal!!

26 October 2021 10:17 pm (GMT+01:00) West Central Africa

Brutal!!
 
Carlos(Course Director) really did a lovely job on todays stage. It had all the puzzles for making a grown man beg for 500 ml in the middle of the run. The desert echoed " Brutal ! Brutal." I literally felt helpless and had to dig dipper than before. The meandering route that led to surprise up hills together  with the soft white sands that reflected all the heat in my face. Camp 2 to CP 1 was more of a standard approach, little did I know that we had killer presents waiting for us. CP 2 to CP 3, was the harshest of them all, the temperatures picked up and running energy was dwindling by the second. I tried  to switch the gears but the gradually increasing gradient made it so impossible. As I approached CP3, I made a choice to find a group to join so that we pull together. Ahmed, Kasha and Mario and I walked steadily towards camp 3. As we were making progress, Ahmed slowed down and Mario did the opposite. For me the last 5km was the icing to the brutal cake. "Zombie walk" was the call as we approached the camp. We eventually made it and got some comfort after most competitors complained of the same effects.
 
Well we march on and look forward to tomorrow. Right no let me nap and try recover.

Comments: Total (6) comments

Julie Widdison

Posted On: 27 Oct 2021 05:28 pm

Strong effort thus far!!!! Keep up the good work, you got this!!! Sending love and grit from UTAH!!! Julie & Adam

Gertrude Chireshe

Posted On: 27 Oct 2021 10:11 am

Rooting for you all the way from Zim! You are such an inspiration! Keep going!

Zeana Haroun

Posted On: 27 Oct 2021 05:30 am

MABASA!!!!! You are smashing it!!! Zombie walk it, that's perfect - whatever it takes. I know you love inspirational quotes, so here is one for you from Martin Luther King Jr - “If you can't fly then run, if you can't run then walk, if you can't walk then crawl, but whatever you do, you have to keep moving forward.” You got this - keep it up - it's the tough times that you make you stronger - one more inspirational quote for you :)

Carmen CORDOGAN

Posted On: 27 Oct 2021 05:17 am

Ohhh Mabasa! No matter how hard the day might be , or how challenging the course , you always triumph! You know the saying that when the going gets tough, the tough gets going … and you personify this. Your humor and great spirit shines through your accounts . Good going managing your nutrition and fluids ! I see you in many photos and you always look strong and focused. You go Mabasa ! You can do this ! C.

Desmond Muroyiwa

Posted On: 27 Oct 2021 02:30 am

This is a true test of GRIT and you are definitely conquering. Keep pushing bro you are nearly there. As you always say, "Mabasics aya😃". FitForFunFamily is checking on every stage and we are super proud of you mate. All the best today and all the remaining stages. Des

Sandy Suckling

Posted On: 26 Oct 2021 10:15 pm

Way to go Mr M truly inspiring stuff. Just get out there and smash it tomorrow and if all else fails Zombie walk it that works for me..... love you work Sandy
Mabasa Mubatapasango
Stage 2: What a good recovery I had.

25 October 2021 09:06 pm (GMT+01:00) West Central Africa

Stage 2
What a good recovery I had. The changes to my pack helped a lot and I felt stronger today. I started quick and had no issues with the pack. I even maintained the same pace with the starting group. It felt nice because I was in the group I belong to. My salts, electrolyte plus food intake was well mastered and I finished like I can go another 21km.
 
Cutting the long story short, I came in 8th position at 5H10min.. feel so strong that I can now switch my pace gears. I am super excited about tomorrows stage. It will be more of climbing but i trust to maintain an easy pace so as to build for the Long march.
 
Let's Go!!
 

Comments: Total (3) comments

Blessing Marangadzva

Posted On: 26 Oct 2021 02:49 pm

Hey Mabasa, Well done ....been checking out the results from Day 1 and all I can say is am impressed, you are doing great,, keep it up knowing that we are behind you, all the way from Zim.. keep going, You got this, all the best. B

Mary Gadams

Posted On: 26 Oct 2021 05:29 am

Hey, my friend, Mabasa, what a journey to the start line. I cannot even believe how well you are doing. You are making Zimbabwe and Namibia so proud. There are lots of nice pictures of you but to be honest it does not look like you are tired at all. You must be so fit. The scenery is spectacular. I so wanted to be in Namibia. I can't think of a better place to be at this point in time. I just wanted to say keep going, you got this. I'll be following you and all the runners every step of the way. Warm regards, Mary

Zeana Haroun

Posted On: 26 Oct 2021 01:51 am

Awesome Mabasa!! Way to go!! You are my hero (seriously). I keep thinking back to 2019 when you were with me at CP4 and we got notified that pink flags were missing, and you went out and made sure all was ok. Another memory is constantly bothering you in 2017 when you were managing the communications - it didn't matter what time of the night or day, you were always there to help me out!!! A couple random memories among many, but I know you will smash this and I am so happy to read this positive blog. Keep it up!!
Mabasa Mubatapasango
Stage 1: Welcome to race day!!

24 October 2021 09:02 pm (GMT+01:00) West Central Africa

Welcome to race day!!
 
Can you believe excitement can cause someone to be awake like an owl. All in all I slept for two hours only.  The day i have been dreaming of and working towards had finally arrived. I stood at the start line with a lot of pride waiting for the count down.
 
"5-4-3-2-1 and they are off," Sam shouted. I am usually fast guy and I was top 3 of guys wanting to go for glory. I even maintained position two for a bit and slipped a bit on the wet puddle, immediately I felt my left ITB saying hello. I then decided to lower my pace and gradually lowered it to a safe pace. I maintained this pace until i started feeling the pack getting heavier and heavier by the step. My salt intake and electrolyte intake definitely needed some adjustment.   I cramped like never before with all the body parts registering at a 9/10 level of pain. I asked myself," could it be the long 9 day taper of my bag packing. It hit me that I'm allowed to walk too. Something I did and stopped all the strategies to focus on reaching camp 1. Something i did with the help of Max who was also walking and we made it in 5.25 hours( I stand corrected) but we were position 9 and 10.
 
Immediately after arriving I rested and when I was I a better shape, i repacked the back putting the heavy stuff on top and as close to my back as possible..
 
Lets wait for stage 2.
 

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Mabasa Mubatapasango
October 23: Weigh Ins

23 October 2021 09:00 pm (GMT+01:00) West Central Africa

Weigh ins
 
Before I jump into the weigh process, I would like to stress the there is Karma lol. Just a couple of years back, I was a volunteer and loved the gear check. It was now my turn to be checked this year. I brought my pack from the tent and lined up for the gear check signing some documents in the process. 
 
As I draw closer, I noticed that the volunteers, staff were strict something that comes a a default with Racing the planet. I knew this before hand and had asked Mike( The crazy american) to go through the gear check. I had all the mandatory gear according to the check that we did. Back in Swakopmund gear check, all went ok. The best part of fitting everything in the bag again had started. I packed my bag and it weighed 11.8kg before water bottles. According to my calculations, 13kg was a pack that I could take as a maximum so in short I was on the good side of the strategy. I got my Bib number 122 and due to excitement It spent the night next to my head.
 
Now its a few hours before the official race start, I just slipped into my tent and waited.....what a long wait it was and it felt like forever!!
 
Lets see what tomorrow brings.

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Mabasa Mubatapasango
22 October: Hope never disappoints.

22 October 2021 09:01 am (GMT+01:00) West Central Africa

Hope never disappoints.
 
We met up at 2:30pm with the other competitors at Plaza Hotel, I'm feeling a bit nervous due to fact that the race is actually happening. The buses were already waiting and it didn't take long for Sarah to calls us for boarding. As the bus was leaving, I start replaying all the possibilities of the race outcome and without a single doubt I knew this was the best thing i have ever done. I start recalling all the efforts, kilometres and hours I put to shed my weight. I then set my mind to give it my best,  fight and endure to the end.
 
As my as drifting, the bus stopped and we were updated by Sarah that 4x4s are going to pick us up to camp 1. Ten minutes later, I got a glimpse of some 4x4s racing towards our directions and it was go time.  We loaded our bags in the three cars and it didn't take long, we were dropped some two hundred meters from the beautiful lime green 2021 Banner, the colourful national flags waving for us. Francois immediately gave me the Namibian flag to help welcome other nationalities and reminding them that Namibia welcomes you. All this was being done under the echo of the Namibian group that was singing and dancing for us, giving me a platform to calm my nerves.
 
In the camp, Sam, Sarah and the volunteers helped us to identify our tents. I got into number 9 dubbed "Charles Elliot" where I met the other two tent buddies named Ahmed and Ayal. 
 
We then spent the day chatting and to get to know each other. We also had a chance to usher in the other competitors that had come in a bit late due to the travelling delays.
 
Let's see what tomorrow hold and we will be doing gear checks.
 
Hope never disappoints.

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Mabasa Mubatapasango
5 Days to go

19 October 2021 04:33 pm (GMT+02:00) Harare, Pretoria

As the days draw near, I am super excited to be on the starting line as if I'm guaranteed a pain-free race. Today I finished up putting everything together and will be starting with the packing tonight. This is a massive step as that nitty-gritty play a massive psychological role. As for the PCR test, I have scheduled it for tomorrow so as to collect the results on Thursday.

 

Final gear

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Mary Gadams

Posted On: 20 Oct 2021 03:08 am

Love it, looking so organized, Mabasa. You've got this!
Mabasa Mubatapasango
8 Days To go - Welcome Namib Race 2021

17 October 2021 08:43 am (GMT+02:00) Harare, Pretoria

Did you Just say 8 Days ?? Well as each day passes I feel so overwhelmed with the feeling that the Namib Race is upon us. I am playing the start line, CP drills in my head and I guess I just need to go through the phase. I have finalised my race strategy and am ready. I am taking it easy, watching a lot of sports-related documentaries as a way of calming my nerves. 

I also noticed that competitors are trickling in and already enjoying the beautiful weather Swakopmund has to offer.

 

 

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Sandy Suckling

Posted On: 19 Oct 2021 01:30 am

Well Mr legend Mabasa, oh I am so going to miss being there in Namib to see you smashing out the course. I expect a smile on your face sand on your feet and a story to tell each day. I am sure that hawks hat of Cols will give you good luck will so be following. Enjoy every moment. Sandy
Mabasa Mubatapasango
17 Days to go

07 October 2021 10:26 am (GMT+02:00) Harare, Pretoria

Wow! It's 17 days to go!! 

Just thought of giving a quick hello to you guys.

I have been putting a lot of hours in the training shack and scrambling to get in shape. I'm focusing on the race than ever before and if one is to assess, they would easily conclude that I have done these kinds of races more than thirty times yet this is going to be my first official multi-staged ultra lol ( Talk about FITYMI). One thing I'm trying to do is to keep my mental health in check cause this will play a vital role in me pushing it across the finish line. I appreciate everyone who has and is encouraging me to keep pushing, I don't take it for granted and I thank you.

 

To all my fellow competitors, volunteers and race management, i wish you safe travels.

 

 

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Sarah Horne

Posted On: 07 Oct 2021 11:21 am

Not long to go now Mabasa!!! Looking forward to seeing you soon - safe travels and keep up the good work!
Mabasa Mubatapasango
50 Days to go

04 September 2021 05:19 pm (GMT+02:00) Harare, Pretoria

 

My alarm went off at 4.30 am and as usual, had to drag myself off the bed so that I prepare for my planned solo marathon. I picked up my running pack and headed out a 5 am. I ran along the coast with the waves cheering me whilst the sand was trying its best to slow me down. For the first two hours, the fog/mist made it difficult to select the route ahead(Don't ask about the headlamp). These factors made my run turn into a heated battle and the mistake they did was to pick the wrong opponent. I fought through and long story short, I made it back in 4Hours 20min thus an average pace of 6.10/km.

 

 

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Sam Fanshawe

Posted On: 06 Sep 2021 07:01 am

A marathon before breakfast - that's amazing! And now we want to hear the headlamp story - hopefully it's a lesson learned that was best learned in training than in the race.
Mabasa Mubatapasango
51 days to go

03 September 2021 12:58 pm (GMT+02:00) Harare, Pretoria

Todays Goal:

 

Type: Trail run

Location: Gonikontas

Type: Hills

 

I left the house at 7:30 am headed towards the Husab mine where I was scheduled to troubleshoot an Internet link. According to my standards, this was supposed to be a 2-hour job but unfortunately, that was never to be. I ended up spending the whole day there trying to bring the link-up. This affected the whole training plan as I wanted to pass through Gonikontes on my way back.

 

Consolation: As this troubleshooting involved a lot of lifting and climbing, I found peace knowing that I did some indirect strength training ?. 

 

Hope never disappoints.

 

 

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Mabasa Mubatapasango
52 days to go

02 September 2021 08:23 am (GMT+02:00) Harare, Pretoria

I woke up with a joyful heart, that feeling after watching the Georgia Race 2021 video. It was nice to watch runners pound the ground again after going through a grey covid spell. One question still lingers in my mind, "Will my turn come in October?" Whatever the answer, I'm grateful to be able to run again carrying a good and positive mindset. It's such a joy to hummer the ground again.

 

My training is going on well and the new changes and team seem to be working to my advantage. I am building from the foundation I set the past two years and I am hoping all will fall into place. Here is to HOPE, let's Go!!

   

 

 

 

Comments: Total (3) comments

Mabasa Mubatapasango

Posted On: 04 Sep 2021 03:18 pm

Thank you @Sarah for the comment. Looking forward to meeting you in October. @Rob Looking forward to meeting you again in October. The Namib Race is really needed considering the roller coaster we were on the past two years. Thanks for the kind words.. Enjoy the last weeks of training.

Sarah Horne

Posted On: 03 Sep 2021 08:21 am

Keeping hopeful all will be well for October this year Mabasa - glad to hear your training is going so well and I look forward to meeting you in Namibia soon!!!

Robert Ripley

Posted On: 02 Sep 2021 10:37 pm

Mabasa! Looking forward to seeing you again! Both of us going from the sidelines into the race. It has been a crazy couple of years, but I am putting my hope into the Namib race. Best of luck on your last few weeks of training!
Mabasa Mubatapasango
Secod Covid dose

04 July 2021 01:31 pm (GMT+02:00) Harare, Pretoria

This is going to be a short and late one. I think it's due to the fact that I had a lot of off duty going on.

 

My 2nd dose was on the 29th of June 2021. I got there at 8.45 am wanting to quickly get it done and disappear but that not how everything unfolded. Seems there was a surge in the individuals wanting to get vaccinated that caused long queues. The other reason was the fact that a rumour on the shortage of vaccines was going on around town so everyone wanted to get at least the first dose. As I patiently waited in the quick, it hit me that the people around me were sceptical about getting the vaccine, to which I took the liberty of demystifying some of the facts. A few minutes later I decided to walk to the nurse and ask if it was to join the same long queue, to which she guided me to the shorter queue of those getting the 2nd dose. Due to experience, I knew the drill and in 30 minutes time, I was done.

After effects:

Truth be told, I felt nothing compared to when I got the 1st dose. This might have been caused by the 1st dose that was already in my system. If I remember very well, the 1st dose took me like 3 days to shed off before feeling normal again. 

 

Currently, Swakopmund is experiencing a spike in the covid cases and recorded deaths. I know there are a lot of myths around vaccines but I strongly know that the way forward is to get vaccinated and  obviously masking up.

Comments: Total (1) comments

Sarah Horne

Posted On: 05 Jul 2021 11:39 am

Great to hear you're fully vaccinated now and are feeling well after your second dose. I recently joined the team and am excited to be heading out for my first race in just a few weeks... Looking forward to seeing you at the Namib race later on in the year!
Mabasa Mubatapasango
First dose of Covid Vaccine

25 May 2021 04:57 am (GMT+02:00) Harare, Pretoria

I'm proud to be typing his cause yesterday I got my first dose of the Sinopharm vaccine. Truth be told, I am not into injections, it's the one thing that gives me the creeps but after going through yesterdays process, I must say I'm impressed that it wasn't that painful ?.

I got to the hospital around 12 noon and there were like 4 people there filling in the consent forms. I completed mine and 15minutes later, the vaccination process was done. They did, however, highlight that I needed to wait 30 more minutes just for monitoring.

My next dose will be on the 6th of June. 

I know there are a lot of speculations around the vaccination but personally, I think it's best to get vaccinated and not only protect yourself but the people around you.

Stay safe.

 

 

 

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Sam Fanshawe

Posted On: 25 May 2021 01:08 pm

It is so great to see that the vaccine in roll out in Namibia is going strong and is already available to everyone! Bring on the Namib Race in October!
Mabasa Mubatapasango
Let's Go!

23 May 2021 07:51 pm (GMT+02:00) Harare, Pretoria

 
 
Running is a game of mental maths. For some odd reason, my brain tells me 155 miles is easier to cover than 250km ?. I take covering this distance as a chance to explore how they finally solved the Diophantine Equation, question the Boolean Pythagorean Triples problem and marvel at the Euler's Identity which states that e^(iπ) + 1 = 0. What if I tell you there is a foot race that will challenge you both mentally and physically. A #Morethanarace suited for those that are seeking a real challenge. In this race, competitors traverse 250 kilometres / 155 miles ? in seven days over rough country terrain with only a place in a tent and water provided. Through the seven days, competitors experience some of the most stunning and iconic desert landscape.
 
There are 4 editions of this race namely the Namib Race, Atacama crossing, Gobi march and the "Last desert" in Antarctica. Fortunately, this year's Namib Race edition is special in that, yours truly will be competing. The course takes you through amazing desert scenery including wide-open red plains, scattered mountain outcrops, huge expanses of dramatic sand dunes, moon-like landscape, Atlantic waves crashing against the sandy desert shoreline, and a fascinating array of plants and animals.
 
For more about the race, visit https://www.racingtheplanet.com/ and if you're keen to follow my journey link me up on IG via @mrmabassa tunnel.
Blog: https://www.racingtheplanet.com/namibrace/blogs
 
 
 
 

 

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Mabasa Mubatapasango
154 Days to Go

23 May 2021 03:32 pm (GMT+02:00) Harare, Pretoria

We're currently experiencing the east wind here in Swakopmund,  this means our normally cool town is blazing hot as it is blowing from inland towards the coast via the desert.

To cut the long story short, my training has been going on well though last week was more of a rest week as I am recovering from Posterior shin splints. I learnt the hard way to be sensitive to my body signals. 

As I am feeling better, I have 2 goals this week; i.e, to gradually get back to my running by attempting short and very slow runs. I trust this method will be beneficial to my bigger picture goal achievement. The second goal is to get vaccinated ?. Comparing the two, I would say the latter is way important than the former.

 

I will try to post more of my runs and progress on my blog more.

follow me: IG:mrmabassa

#Overcome #GoFinish

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Mabasa Mubatapasango
Race postponement

04 March 2021 08:40 am (GMT+02:00) Harare, Pretoria

Greetings from Africa!

 

The norm is for me to write a full intro then go to my main point. This blog is going to be different, in that I'm going to share the main point. "Don't lose hope"

Yes, April 2021 race is not happening due to reasons beyond anyone's control but we focus and reschedule for the 24th of October. It's hard to put everything together due to a lot of variables beyond anyone's control. As an ultra runner(with two years of training experience), I have learnt that you need to keep the hope alive, pick your bags up and regroup. Moving is the only way.

The new date is 24 October 2021 and depending on the vaccine roll-outs and global covid landscape, we will meet again in the desert.

 

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Mabasa Mubatapasango
Happy New Year

03 January 2021 10:23 am (GMT+08:00) Beijing, Chongqing, Hong Kong, Urumqi

Let me start by wishing you a Happy New year!!!!

 

The goal this month is to move to the second stage of my training. I managed to get into rhythms with structured training. This week here is what my training schedule looking like:

 

Day 1:

Calf raises 3x15

Step ups    3x15

Superman  3x15

Crunches    3x15

Back extensions  3x15

 

Day 2:

Burpees   3x15

Bridges      3x15

Reverse Snow angel   3x15

Push back push ups     3x15

Accordion crunches   3x15

 

Day 3:

Lateral squats  3x15

Walking lunges  3x15

Push ups     3x15

Tricep dips   3x15

Planks    3x30-45 secs

 

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Mabasa Mubatapasango
Regrouping

26 November 2020 09:36 am (GMT+08:00) Beijing, Chongqing, Hong Kong, Urumqi

Hello,

The past couple of months has seen me doing a lot of inquiries on how to come back from a big break and setback. I'm sure everyone will agree with me that COVID-19 derailed a lot of our running plans and schedules. However, as the saying goes-"No need to worry over spilled milk, we regroup and march ahead." I guess this whole regrouping thing is the main driving force to why I'm writing this blog.

 

Before I lay out my findings, I must say thank you to the more experienced runners, coaches, and medical people around me who were willing to guide me in this "regrouping" process. 

In the past months, I found myself struggling to find any motivation to run. This felt weird to me as I never really thought such things existed. It all started after doing my 60km solo run, I made a choice to take a well-deserverd break since I had been pounding the road for 6 months straight. A day's break turned to a week, a week to months and before you know it I started losing interest and when the November race got canceled, it drained all the comeback hopes. Fortunately, I'm a special person who is not too proud to consult and I reached out for information/help. After talking to Anim(Thank you big time), it turned out that what I was going through is not something foreign in the running community. This came as a relief, but the battle was just beginning. I got linked to a therapist who figured what was going on with me and the conclusion is - I'm motivated by overcoming challenges, not quitting, and finishing what I start. Due to the lack of races in 2020, this caused me to lose the reason why I was training (By the way I take my training so so seriously).

The short story of it, we came up with a new training plan. One that doesn't focus on making a winner but a running machine (Me with my Thinking big mentality ?). This is the best plan ever and is not only designed to win but to break all the RTP time records.

Currently, I feel no pressure at all, and I'm excited to be enjoying the runs. The RTP community run is also adding to the positive energy, a big thank you to you.

So now that the form is found again, I appreciate what it means to have it and promised myself never to let it go.

 

"Count it as a blessing when you're able to put on your running shoes to do a km run"-Mabasa

 

Keep well and stay safe.

 

 

 

 

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Mabasa Mubatapasango
Current situation

01 September 2020 04:39 pm (GMT+08:00) Beijing, Chongqing, Hong Kong, Urumqi

We're now in September?, what a roller coaster of emotions it has been for me as I watched for months the government give COVID updates. Terms like spiked, red zone and lockdown seemed to be the order of the day. Honestly, it drained me that I failed to run with a clear mind, which is my fuel to go fast and far. It just dawned unto me that - What if i just focus on the constants like the terrain, the dunes and the rocks. Sounds crazy but weird enough it helped me think of running again. I will schedule a new training adjustment plan and hit the road again.

The next RTP race will surely be a revenge mission for a lot of athletes. Brace yourselves for more pictures of beautiful Namibia. 

Stay Safe.?

 

 

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Mabasa Mubatapasango
The 365 Goal - APRIL 2020

11 May 2020 09:33 am (GMT+02:00) Harare, Pretoria

The last time I posted, I was a bit low due to the fact that our race had been postponed until the 5th of November due to COVID-19. A part of me couldn't settle with the fact that I wasn't going to achieve my 365-day personal fitness goal of being able to run 250km in 6 days. This, by the way, was the first time to ever attempt it officially considering the fact that I fall under " beginners' runner's club."

Seated in the "Brew and Bristle coffee cafe" on that day, I had a choice to make - Attempt the distance by myself or Wait for the 5th of November.  The former looked like a waste of time because there was no need to put myself under that load as I had more training days. As for the second option of waiting until the 5th, it looked like the obvious route to take. Me being half-witted?, I went for the first option -"Attempt the distance by myself."

The option of attempting the distance by myself would satisfy the fact that "Ï had stuck to my word / running goal." This would also prove that I had done well in training. I would use the results as the base camp of exposing my weakness. If I was to pick up any injury, well I still had more time to recover. Therefore, I set the 25th of April 2020 as my starting day. This is exactly 365 days after taking on the fitness challenge. I needed to make it as practical as possible as I wouldn't be having any support, checkpoints etc. So I set my house as the Base camp where I would have meals, rest and water. I called this attempt - #RTPVirtual

Days leading to the #RTPVirtual, I had done 325km (APRIL total 535km: 3 x 42km, 7x 21km, 2x15km, 2x 10km)

April

Day 1  -  25 April 2020:  #RoundBlocks

21°/ 13°
Hist. Avg.
18°/13°

I'm not sure if it was excitement or what but went blazing out of the starting blocks. The backpack felt light, energy levels were high?. 

Day 2 - 26 April 2020 - #CoastalRun

22° / 12°
Hist. Avg.
18°/13°

 I was already regretting going fast the previous day. I had to lower my pace if i was to complete the challenge. Did the 42km along the beach.

Day 3  - 27 April 2020 #EarthStation

20° / 13°
Hist. Avg.
18°/13°

Started a bit late and by the time i hit the road, Mr Fog was already parading himself around town. I did the first leg of the run in the desert and decided to follow the dirt road along the main road so as to avoid getting lost in the fog.

 

Day 4 - 28 April 2020

Despite the ?feeling, I really enjoyed this one cause it took me in the open desert towards the Rossin mountain. I have memories of the route so they came flooding.

21°/11°
Hist. Avg.
18°/13°
 

Day 5 - 29 April 2020 - The 2 part story that went silent.

I did my route 1 repeat in the morning and came back to base to charge my tracker and attend Zoom fitness lesson scheduled for 2pm. 
 
22° / 9°
Hist. Avg.
18°/13°

 

All I can say is that -I glad I met my 356-day fitness challenge, don't ever regret the run for it made me more confident and exposed the areas I need to work on come 5 November. 

 

"I fear not the man who has practised 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practised one kick 10,000 times.

Bruce Lee

#FinishStrong #GoFinish #GoFar_GoFinish #RTP2020

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Mabasa Mubatapasango
Race Postponed

24 March 2020 03:43 pm (GMT+02:00) Harare, Pretoria

Due to the Covid-19, the organizers made a not so easy decision to postpone the race to the 5th of November.

I have been working so hard for this race but safety comes first and therefore I'm proud of the organizers hence am 100% behind the decision.

Stay safe and dnt forget to wash or sanitize your hands. 

 

 

 

 

Comments: Total (2) comments

Mabasa Mubatapasango

Posted On: 10 May 2020 07:46 am

Thank you so much Tony, Patience pays they say.We see each other in November😀.

Tony Brammer

Posted On: 25 Mar 2020 08:23 am

Your time will come agin soon Mabasa. Keep yourself fit and hopefully see you in November. Stay safe my friend
Mabasa Mubatapasango
Covid-19

24 March 2020 02:58 pm (GMT+02:00) Harare, Pretoria

Hope is a burning light that should never die or be put out. It dies by power of choice so never choose to let it die.

I'm writing this blog with a heavy heart concerning the Covid-19 that is sweeping across the world. This has ceased to be a regional issue but global one where we have to join hands and fight it out. RTP is all about endurance and never giving up so as part of the family, our hope of things we'll again will never die.

Basic protective measures against the new coronavirus

Stay aware of the latest information on the COVID-19 outbreak, available on the WHO website and through your national and local public health authority. Most people who become infected experience mild illness and recover, but it can be more severe for others. Take care of your health and protect others by doing the following

Wash your hands frequently

Regularly and thoroughly clean your hands with an alcohol-based hand rub or wash them with soap and water.

Why? Washing your hands with soap and water or using alcohol-based hand rub kills viruses that may be on your hands.

Maintain social distancing

Maintain at least 1 metre (3 feet) distance between yourself and anyone who is coughing or sneezing.

 

Why? When someone coughs or sneezes they spray small liquid droplets from their nose or mouth which may contain virus. If you are too close, you can breathe in the droplets, including the COVID-19 virus if the person coughing has the disease.

 

 

 

Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth

Why? Hands touch many surfaces and can pick up viruses. Once contaminated, hands can transfer the virus to your eyes, nose or mouth. From there, the virus can enter your body and can make you sick.

 

Practice respiratory hygiene

Make sure you, and the people around you, follow good respiratory hygiene. This means covering your mouth and nose with your bent elbow or tissue when you cough or sneeze. Then dispose of the used tissue immediately.

 

Why? Droplets spread virus. By following good respiratory hygiene you protect the people around you from viruses such as cold, flu and COVID-19.

 

If you have fever, cough and difficulty breathing, seek medical care early

Stay home if you feel unwell. If you have a fever, cough and difficulty breathing, seek medical attention and call in advance. Follow the directions of your local health authority.

 

Why? National and local authorities will have the most up to date information on the situation in your area. Calling in advance will allow your health care provider to quickly direct you to the right health facility. This will also protect you and help prevent spread of viruses and other infections.

 

 

 

Stay informed and follow advice given by your healthcare provider

Stay informed on the latest developments about COVID-19. Follow advice given by your healthcare provider, your national and local public health authority or your employer on how to protect yourself and others from COVID-19.

 

Why? National and local authorities will have the most up to date information on whether COVID-19 is spreading in your area. They are best placed to advise on what people in your area should be doing to protect themselves.

 

 

 

Protection measures for persons who are in or have recently visited (past 14 days) areas where COVID-19 is spreading

Follow the guidance outlined above.

Stay at home if you begin to feel unwell, even with mild symptoms such as headache and slight runny nose, until you recover. Why? Avoiding contact with others and visits to medical facilities will allow these facilities to operate more effectively and help protect you and others from possible COVID-19 and other viruses.

If you develop fever, cough and difficulty breathing, seek medical advice promptly as this may be due to a respiratory infection or other serious condition. Call in advance and tell your provider of any recent travel or contact with travelers. Why? Calling in advance will allow your health care provider to quickly direct you to the right health facility. This will also help to prevent possible spread of COVID-19 and other viruses.

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Mabasa Mubatapasango
Injury Update ?

26 February 2020 10:50 am (GMT+08:00) Beijing, Chongqing, Hong Kong, Urumqi

Hello all?,

60 days to go and I'm excited that I'm super better! ??. I shall be resuming training on Monday the 2nd of March... Yeeepeee!!

So what did I do whilst injured, well it's a simple question to answer as I had a lot of time to spend. 

1-work: I found myself traveling with work and had a lot of manual work to do thus I had awesome free workouts as I would climb, jump, carry and endure the heat in the North at different altitudes. In short I did crossfit and altitude training, fair enough. ? 

2-Family : we had priceless moments together and to some time to explain to the girls about the race and what I intend to achieve. In short, I did mental training. ? 

3-Admin : well, I never realised the administration demands of running or preparing for a race but all the same I put in the work and cleared the backlog. In short, I made my focus sharper by eliminating backlog ? 

4-Gym : went there twice ?. Just can't run on a treadmill or cycle on one position. 

5-Logo design :Finally had a chance to sit down, design and perfect my logo. Thanks @Merike for the awesome job.. 

Lastly, just want to say thank you to everyone who is supporting me in the background and for RTP for such an amazing race.. 

 

Spread the love and be humble. 

Mabasa Finish logoLogo

 

Comments: Total (2) comments

Mabasa Mubatapasango

Posted On: 07 Mar 2020 12:42 pm

Thank you Tony, i'm glad you like it. The break really helped out, I guess it was a blessing in disguise. Im feeling much better and I am slowly getting back.

Tony Brammer

Posted On: 02 Mar 2020 07:07 am

Great logo. Having a little time off training will prove an enormous benefit, it makes you realise what you've been missing. Stay strong.
Mabasa Mubatapasango
Update

07 February 2020 09:16 am (GMT+08:00) Beijing, Chongqing, Hong Kong, Urumqi

Hello,

Im sitting in my favourite coffee shop ( Brew Bristles) enjoying a 007 coffee (Make a turn and just ask for a 007 coffee and thank me later) then it hit me that its been a month since i posted something. First things first, let me start by wishing you all an awesome 2020…again.

Back to the prep stories, I’m in Brew Bristle just to do my Namib race admin and I’m impressed by the ground covered looking at the time left, 79 days to be exact. I’m 98% on the mandatory Equipment list which is good news. 

Of late I have been doing well in terms of my training. I must say, this at this point that the Racing the planet training document is the best. Im consistently following it and I can feel the progress physically. The fact that it takes a gradual increase in the training intensity sort of makes the training load seem like it’s way too simple and achievable there by giving you a sense of achievement after every session. Sense of achievement is what improves your motivation and motivation is key to these types of races. 

I managed to do my January ultra of 85km with my 8km pack and it felt better than the last time I attempted the same. As for the half marathons, I managed to do only two which wasn’t bad. Fortunately, due to the nature of my job where I get to travel and do installations, in January I found myself working in the hot (between 38 - 42 degrees) and High altitude areas so I took advantage and ran whenever I found free space. It ain’t easy by the way running in the heat but like they say “Deal with it.” 

Injuries:

I had set Rossing Marathon on 8 February as a day I train for my 42km run but looks like the plan has been thwarted by a foot injury (??). So my aim was to run a sub 3 and half hour marathon, which I felt I was close to breaking only to be woken up by a car passing by our house lol. Well I developed a Plantar fisciitis.. So currently I’m restricted to soft training also known as walking lol. Im also taking some time to visit the gym for strength work, something I never used to do since my job involves a lot of lifting anyways. 

Plantar fasciitis is an inflammation of the fibrous tissue (plantar fascia) along the bottom of your foot that connects your heel bone to your toes. Plantar fasciitis can cause intense heel pain.”

So yes, even legends get Injured..It ain’t easy running round the globe 3 times in a week?..

“Running Allows me to visit my past and make peace with  all the mistakes I did, thereby sharpening my future plans.”- Mabasa Finish

Comments: Total (1) comments

Tony Brammer

Posted On: 12 Feb 2020 05:40 am

It sounds like you're reaping all the rewards of long distance running. Hopefully in your next post you will be able to tell us about the IT band you've got. It's a long journey with plenty of pain but the rewards are truly worth it. Just ask yourself, would you like to go back to where you were, plantar fasciitis accepted. Remember soft training is a good pace, some days. Keep smiling and see you soon.
Mabasa Mubatapasango
Last 2019 Post

24 December 2019 04:38 pm (GMT+08:00) Beijing, Chongqing, Hong Kong, Urumqi

'If you can remember why you started, then you'll know why you must continue.'... Remember why you started.

The statement always calibrates me and sharpens my focus when I come to think of the huge task that lie ahead. Many at times I try to do more of a mental workout and during the process, I always revisit…”Why did I start?”..Looking at my story, it was never those dramatic versions where one finds themselves facing their destiny but my story is all about answering question - “Why.” This word or question has unlocked a lot of fascinating doors about life and a great feeling on conquering a giant. 

 One answer or lesson I have gotten so far is - “You can never overcome an obstacle by yourself”: I have found myself with a lot of people giving me information, advice, opportunity assistance and showed great care and love. This is a big deal for me cause I grew up in a shell, trying by all means to do things by myself, my way and my rules. If only I had known the beauty of joining hands together in progressing, i'm sure by now I should’ve been far..But I guess I have unfinished business that needs no one but me.

 Oh yes, this is December issue by the way and it's late. So I have great news! We were blessed with a beautiful December baby girl, Maike. I haven’t found enough time to sit down and write but all the same she had to force me?. Officially I now have two coaches meaning double the motivation and double the intent. I did a 21km run to celebrate her arrival and decided to dedicate the last 21km to her at the Namib 2020, I hope it will help to push me across the finish line. December was mainly dedicated to Ruck(10kg) runs, which I managed to do back to back. I also had one local trail race which I managed to complete and came 8th.

 Like highlighted, I don’t have much to say in this issue but one thing I know is, come January, all hands will be on deck polishing the training.  Thank you so much to everyone who is supporting this crazy dream - Kudos to you.

Last note, thank you Thomas Watson, for the amazing “Stage Race Handbook,” I don’t regret purchasing and reading it. I benefited a lot.

 

"Discipline is doing what needs to be done when it needs to be done even when you don’t feel like doing it."

#FinishStrong#GoFar_GoFinish#Overcome#RTP2020#BodyTransformation

 

Merry Christmas and a happy festive season to my friends & family all over the world.

Comments: Total (2) comments

Mabasa Mubatapasango

Posted On: 01 Feb 2020 10:54 am

Thank you Tony, she has been keeping me busy. Its a blessing. Thank you for the advice, I will try keep it more fun and simple. See you soon.

Tony Brammer

Posted On: 04 Jan 2020 06:06 am

Congratulations on your news Mabasa, another little person to inspire. Enjoy your training and keep it fun. See you soon in Swakopmund.
Mabasa Mubatapasango
Sand Dune Run Techniques

02 November 2019 03:21 am (GMT+08:00) Beijing, Chongqing, Hong Kong, Urumqi

Hello,

Its 177 days  to go to the Namib Race 2020,  I have accepted that days are fast approaching. The good thing is I have rested most of October to allow for some intense training as from Monday 4 November 2019.  I realised I was putting myself under a lot of pressure. Talking of pressure, I’m glad to mention of the overwhelming support and assistance i’m getting from friends both local and abroad - Thank you so much guys ?. Inline with helping each other, I had an epiphany during my last dune run that this race is Not about me. It’s about showing each other that if we work as a team and support one another, we can achieve the craziest of things. We just have to care.

 

 Due to the previous mentioned point, I decided to share my Dune running experience and tips for the benefit of those that will be joining me in  April 2020 and haven’t had a chance of running in the sand dunes.

 

Pasted Graphic.png

 

Having run on pavements and dirt roads, I can confidently say running in the the sand dunes isn’t a walk in the park. It’s one area where you shouldn’t think of distance and pace because it will mentally put you off if you approach it with that mentality. I like to look at it from a good core and hip stability workout point of view cause you will instantly feel the positive effects. As you approach the dune, try to establish the side of the prevailing wind because that’s where the stable compact end will be. Depending on the size of dune, I learnt that doing an easy zig-zag as you go up is quicker and less strenuous than the direct ascent. If you don’t have or are not a fan of tracking pole, the best is the use your fingers to propel you forward so make sue you wear gloves. As a side note, try to Use a bit of momentum to initiate the climb, it will make a difference.  Breathing is very key as you take each step up the Dune and if you decide to take a breather during an ascent, avoid standing upright rather maintain the bent position but making sure your legs are straight. This I have come to learn that it stretches your HAMs and quads will be in engaging mode so continuation will be rapid and easy.

 

1. Dig deep

 

When running on sand, you want the largest surface area possible in order to avoid slipping backwards. Dig deeper into the sand. Instead of trying to land on your toes or your heel, you should just try to land on the middle of your foot to increase the surface area so you don’t sink in the sand.

 

2. Slide away

 

How you run up a dune depends massively on how steep the dune is. I like to stay nice and low over the top of the dune in order to not waste too much energy. Sometimes my hands would go down or I’d be on my knees.

As soon as you get the top there’s the fun bit – you just slide down the other side. I dig my heels into the sand – with my heels dug in it really saves your legs and was as quick if not quicker method because you’re not thinking as much on your descent. 

If you led with your toe you’re likely to trip up and have to lift your toes through fresh sand, which is just going to completely wreck your legs.

 

Above all- Enjoy it!

 

I hope this information is  helpful ..leave a comment or tip or question.

 

November Goals - Following the RTP race plan

                            - Cross training

                            - Dune runs

                            - Hills

                            - Run with 10kgs

 

“I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times.”

Bruce Lee

#FinishStrong #Overcome #GoFar_GoFinish #RTP

Comments: Total (4) comments

Mabasa Mubatapasango

Posted On: 07 Mar 2020 12:45 pm

The great power of inspiration..I can not wait to be on the starting line. I shall conquer.

Mabasa Mubatapasango

Posted On: 24 Dec 2019 11:08 am

My Apologies for the late response to your [email protected] Tonny, I can't wait t meet you again 😀. I am so looking forward to taking up the challenge and I trust all is going to fall into place. The best way to tackle any challenge is go through it, I just need to get to CP 3 and the rest will be history. Let's get it done😀💪🏻 cause there ain't no turning back. @Sam, not sure about the brand, I will share a picture via email. Tested them recently and I think I need to change.

Sam Fanshawe

Posted On: 12 Dec 2019 05:36 pm

Genius tips! What gaiters are you using?

Tony Brammer

Posted On: 13 Nov 2019 03:34 pm

Mabasa my friend, I'm really looking forward to seeing you again. You are what the races are all about, come and work, get inspired, face the challenge, get it done. I will even wake up from my nap to cheer you in to CP3 each day. Stay hard.
Mabasa Mubatapasango
Progress and update

16 October 2019 02:55 am (GMT+08:00) Beijing, Chongqing, Hong Kong, Urumqi

Wow! We are already under 200 days to go thus 193 days to be exact.. For some reason I'm not moved, I guess it's a sign that I'm on the track?.
Since I posted my last blog the beginning of September, a lot of positive things has happened?.. My race package ? eventually reached me after months and months of waiting, my running speed remarkably improved and my book is slowly taking shape. All these positive turns takes the pressure away and sharpens my focus of the bigger picture.

Back to serious stuff, I took a two weeks break from running in October so as to allow my body to recover a bit cause the past couple months it was always hammer time, running day in an day out. This wasn't an easy decision to make but it had to be done as I focus on the ultimate goal. After this break, I will be moving into my 2nd phase of training which will be mainly focused on strengthening or Strength. This means I will be frequenting the gym and cross fit warehouse causing me to yet again change my Nutrition /diets... I'm loving this??.

This was more of an update - i will share some running tips and workout routines that I picked along the way so look out for more information and blogs??.

I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times.

Bruce Lee

#FinishStrong #Overcome #GoFinish #RTP

Comments: Total (2) comments

Mabasa Mubatapasango

Posted On: 24 Dec 2019 11:10 am

Well...I am🙈..

Samantha Fanshawe

Posted On: 12 Dec 2019 05:37 pm

Wait what, you're writing a book?
Mabasa Mubatapasango
The Journey so far

04 September 2019 08:32 am (GMT+08:00) Beijing, Chongqing, Hong Kong, Urumqi

Hey Guys!

Welcome to my blog where I'll be sharing my RTP journey. I hope you will find it interesting and most importantly I trust I will get much feedback from you guys, both positive and negative ?. Mabasa is my name and I’m no professional runner, neither am I an athlete pro but helplessly in love with showing up on the starting line, fit in and definitely finish off what I start and by the way, I answer to name Finish as my middle name. ( pretty cool right!?)

So my first experience with Amazing Race was in 2017 where I drove close to a thousand km to join the home team in setting up the internet connections, and I never imagined that I would fall in love with this race someday. As a natural observer I thought to myself“ This is insane! I had a lot to be amused about pertaining to the fellows who took part in it. I'd say probably i cared less about the food i ate not to mention just how bad i loved my food, life was all rosey and my weight was 110kg. It took RTP for me to change my mindset and how I perceived health matters, running and life itself in general. I remember telling myself that I needed to change. I seldom noticed, through the Torrabay shower window, a 69-year-old Japanese guy crossing the Torra finishing line.
Three months before the race I was battling serious sleep apnea that was quite unpleasant but thank God, my wife who happens to be a well-trained physiotherapist worked effortlessly till it came to an ease.

Fast forward, 2018 and 2019 races were life-changing moments because i I was a volunteer and I appreciated the amount of work that happens behind the scenes to make this race an Amazing one just like it sounds.

My favourite task is sweeping, I think it comes naturally from where I come from and how I've been raised.

I treasure the friendships, relationships and lessons both learned and unlearned.


Let's get into 2020 Race details: #WhereAthleticFrontiersBegin

RTP is such an awesome race, one where hope and the human spirit is shared and displayed respectively. 2020 I will be a competitor I guess to try and answer the question I asked in April of 2017 - “For the why” (its a line meaning- for what reason). It was a great feeling knowing that the race would be in 365 days. It felt like I had a lot of time to prepare but things always happen slower than you want and longer than planned. I kicked into the training right away, by first warning the people around me that they are going to see a lot of changes in me and that they shouldn’t be worried..lol..(By the way they are seeing the changes)

I have managed to come up with a weekly routine of having uphill sessions in the sand dunes and in the folding mountain ranges. I also have long runs, track and workout sessions.

I must say the way I'm feeling during my run is way way way better than before and I should just improve bit by bit. In August I had 1 Official Marathon, 2 x half marathons( trail) and ran a total of 260km which is 40km shy off my monthly target.

Injuries:

I have grown to understand that visiting the physiotherapy room is a normal occurrence of every athlete. Injuries like ITB, shin splints, knees, back pain have started feeling like home. I'd describe the pain as excruciatingly sweet..?.. .the irony!!! At least none are major…how good is that!

Gear

Well, I’m slowly getting the stuff together. Unfortunately, some of the stuff that was shipped from the US never got to me but I’m finding alternatives all the same. There is still a bit of time.

September:
1 x 16km Dunes trail run competition
1 x 21km trail run competition
1 x Hangana Marathon


“ The end of the matter is more important than it’s beginning “ #FinishStrong#Overcome#GoFinish#RTP

Comments: Total (2) comments

Mabasa Mubatapasango

Posted On: 15 Oct 2019 11:24 pm

Thank you Sam, Can't wait for the 2020 edition too. #GoFinish

Sam Fanshawe

Posted On: 04 Sep 2019 06:49 am

HI Mabasa - what a fabulous first blog. Following your running from the moment you got back from the Skeleton Coast back in 2016! We can't wait to see you on the start line!