FOUR MONTHS TO GO!

The past 14 days have seen a surge in training and as we head into February so the programs get vamped up a little more and becomes more refined! I could say a lot has happened in the past 20 days and all on the positive side of things!
I have not felt this good in a long while but also cautious of over extending and getting ahead of things with where I am headed. I have been blessed with good health, event free training and just general positive vibes coming from one and all. My family, as I may have mentioned this before, is a special family. What family supports you with the sacrifices that need to be made in the quest to prepare mind, body and spirit for an endurance event like the Freedom Challenge race across South Africa? I am no seasoned athlete but am into fitness and like most, just your average guy who also finds thrill in the human spirit and its ability to endure challenges. 4 Months to go!
As I write, I have just come off my biggest training week to date but this is where we are at from now onward. Other than the normal full week of training again and off the back of an early 3.30 a.m Saturday rise and shine, completing a hard but worth it 160 km solo ride with back pack and all in searing heat, (if 40 degrees is not searing when it reached its peak, then I don’t know?) with a moving time of 6 hours and 42 minutes, with the mid morning temperatures in their 30’s, it took perseverance to pull it off and I am so glad I did! While the sweat poured, my mind was playing all its tricks and pulling all the cards to get me to succumb to weakness and mediocrity. But as said, guess who triumphed! A blissful 60 km on Sunday with no signs of soreness or fatigue from the day before indicated my body is recovering well from the stress it is placed under from time to time. For a working class individual, its been a good eighteen hour plus week of training session!
I also got to test my new back pack received from Adventure Inc. and was really chuffed with these guys as it had also arrived ahead of the weekend.
I have tried a few packs out in the past and I would be lying if I said I was a little nervous of how my Osprey Talon 22 was going to fare. But here I had it in hand, a neat coded blue pack with waist belt and all as well as designed for mountain biking and adventure racing, I was eager to test it on a long training ride. http://www.adventureinc.co.za/product/talon-22/  This I got to do the past weekend!!
I will be writing a short review from my first test run, coming soon.
Another development in the past number of days is that I had entered and then totally forgot about a competition I took part in, in November 2015. The competition was to send a photo to an event organization, the 36One that also has an annual bike race organized in April every year. I attempted this race in 2015 but failed miserably due to serious lack of training. 

As some may know, I love photography and so I had the opportunity to submit one of my pictures which also features herein my blog in an earlier post in 2015. With me and my bike, standing over looking a valley on a mountain top, I won the competition and a free solo entry into the event!! Here is the blog post with the picture: http://afrivence.blogspot.co.za/2015/10/the-biking-odyssey.html
And yes! I will be trekking off to the start in April to take part! A single stage 360 km of mountain bike racing in a limited time of 36 hours!! Will be good for the Freedom Challenge training I’m sure…..

I did a self analysis and training comparison from over the past 3 years with where I am currently and with the type of training, the volume, intensity and any growth or losses that may have occurred with my performances. Measured over a defined time frame over a three and a half month period over three years in each year, there have been positive growth in this new era I find myself! With that I have felt really good physically as well as mentally which also enhances my positive outlook to the challenges that lie ahead.
To date in 2016 here are some of the stats;
I have had a 43% growth on 2013 and 73% growth on 2014 this year in the training miles I have covered. I have had a 40% growth on 2013 and 65% growth on 2014 this year in the amount of hours I have spent training. I have had a 47% growth on 2013 and 68% growth on 2014 this year in the amount of ascent I have covered in training. I have had a 64% growth on 2013 and 78% growth on 2014 this year in the amount of calories I have burnt up in training; hence I am sure a big contribution to my weight loss!
There are so many other comparisons not listed but all the same, show good growth and form of which just motivates me more and more!!

 
NOW! The Carel du Toit Centre in Cape Town! http://careldutoit.co.za/
As I always maintain, this is still ongoing and things are a little slow but I am still very optimistic good things will come!
I could really do with some help as well as any sharing of this information as much as possible. I am trying to raise funds for this centre which teaches deaf children to speak. I was also born deaf with nearly half my hearing lost in both ears and with me doing the Freedom Challenge race across South Africa, which is my challenge, I wish to extend a challenge out there to anyone and everyone to assist me and help make a difference and to consider making a donation.  I have had some donations from some fantastic people already and anyone can help because there is still a way to go! 

The donations can be made through the GivenGain Foundation from the link provided and rest assured this is a secured payment site of which all funds donated are transferred into the Carel du Toit Trust.

Please read my cause profile:

Raising funds for The Carel du Toit Trust ensures the sustainability of the services of the Carel du Toit Centre in Cape Town, where children with hearing impairments are fitted with appropriate hearing technology and learn to speak.

This Centre is the only facility of its kind in the Western Cape to offer deaf children an all-encompassing, structured pre-primary school environment with an early intervention programme and foundation phase. Since established in 1973, the Centre’s belief is that deaf children can learn to speak if a hearing impairment is detected early and there are no other complications. The parent guidance programme offers early intervention to engage, encourage and empower parents to be a partner in teaching the deaf child to speak.
In so doing, children with hearing impairments have the opportunity to be intellectually, socially and emotionally prepared for integration into a society of hearing people.

Learners fees are payable according to the family’s income and so there is an enormous need for donations and sponsorships for the Carel du Toit Centre to continue its effective work. On-site professionals such as audiologists, speech therapists, occupational therapists and physiotherapists, assist children to overcome various challenges and work closely with the teachers to facilitate progress in speech-language acquisition.

The funding needs include:
School Fees and Transport Costs
Hearing Aid Consumables
Technological Repairs for Hearing Devices
Therapy Costs – Audiology, Speech Therapy, Occupational Therapy and Physiotherapy
School Maintenance Costs

Important Note: South African citizens donating R100 or more will receive a Section 18A tax certificate for tax rebate purposes.


 My closing note is this: I always understand that people are skeptical with making online donations or just contributing in some way but this is a genuine cause, a genuine organization doing good things and close to my heart and I would like as many people to be part of this, those willing!


I have been given official permission by the Carel du Toit Centre to undertake this cause.
I am open to any questions and any questions can be logged by messaging my inbox/sending me a personal message at: https://www.facebook.com/afrivence/
Don’t forget to share!!

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