Rogeema was one of the first people I engaged with on Twitter. It was a rocky start at first because, I mistakenly thought she was a guy and kept reading her name as Roger Kenny. I finally got to meet her in person when she organised a fabulous tweetup just before Two Oceans in April this year. She even managed to get Comrades winner, Stephen Muzhingi, to join us at the tweetup.
From that day, I knew this about Rog. If she puts her mind to something, you had better believe that it will happen.
So when she announced plans that she would be running a half marathon in 135 minutes in my honour, I knew nothing would stop her. Rog had read a previous blog post of mine where I openly blogged about an illness I was suffering with. She then decided that her next race would be dedicated to me. I urge you to read her story here… 135 minutes for Brony.
I’m going to be honest. From the start, I was not too keen on the idea. I felt that although I had blogged about my illness, I was not dying. In fact, further exposure made me incredibly uncomfortable. Exposed. Vulnerable.
Until 07h20 on Saturday morning that is….
I had just completed a 10km race out in Irene. Throughout the entire race, my mind was filled with thoughts about Rogeema. I thought about her blog, her training and the fact that she was out running for me. Every step I took, I thought about her.
As I finished my race, I raced back to the car to get my phone to get updates. Yes, raced. I was suddenly overwhelmed with emotion. As I saw the many tweets, I started to cry and realised just how much it meant to me, but also to her.
Rog ran her heart out! She did not manage the 135 minutes, but in my mind, it didn’t matter anymore. Her race had been won even before she started! Her time: 2:26 minutes.
Rogeema, words cannot express what you did for me. I am so touched.
Thanks also to these special people:
Morne Botha (@mohebo). I spoke to Morne at Rogeema’s tweetup. It was the most inspirational 5 minutes that pulled me through Two Oceans this year. Morne, do not under-estimate the motivational power you have.
About Rogeema: Rogeema is an electrical engineer by profession. She is also an ardent karate-ka and is currently at the level of 2nd dan black belt. Her true passion is developing people and helping them reach their full potential through business, investing, sport, spirituality, personal development and education. She is also active in her community as a human rights activist and serves on the Western Cape committee of Mensa as the editor of The Tablet (quarterly e-zine). I know Rogeema as a runner. Her PB for a half marathon is 02:19:36.
But best of all, Rogeema is my friend!