The race is still the same no matter how fast we run. #dischem21

Compared to other running races, the Dischem half marathon unnerves me. It’s a tough course. It starts out with 10kms of undulating road before you get hit with a gradual pull which last from around 11kms to 18kms. The next 3kms to the finish line is a massive downhill drop which can be rough on the knees and quads.

Given what I’ve just described, it remains one of the most popular races on the race calendar and sells out pretty quickly with a field of over 6500 runners.

I knew I had to pace myself carefully. Go out too fast and have nothing left for the uphill pull. Go out too slowly and miss the 3-hour cut off. It’s a daunting task! I decided to use the run to get the time on my legs and not overdue it. I had pushed quite hard the week before at the Wits Kudu’s 15km race.

But as a race review, there’s something to Sunday’s race that goes beyond the fantastic organisation, the ice cold water stops, the brilliant marshalling on the busy streets or even the teams of photographers along the route capturing runner’s faces. It’s the vibe that reminded me of what running is all about.

Dischem Half Marathon tweeted a picture of the last lady finishing the race. Alongside her is a crowd of supporters, cheering her on, running the last km with her. That tweet was followed by so many well wishes and words of encouragement from so many people, including one from Jenna Challenor, who finished the race in 2nd position. It touched my heart! What an awesome message!    The winning time was 1:06. The last runner finished in 4:07. Both runners would have felt nerves at the start, both would’ve experienced pain heading up those steep hills and both would’ve been absolutely elated crossing the finish line.

It doesn’t matter how fast you run, or what your finishing time is, the race is still the same. The victory just as sweet!

medalWell done to all runners!

See you next year Dischem.


12 thoughts on “The race is still the same no matter how fast we run. #dischem21

  1. Just came across your blog today .. not sure how 🙂 .. but am so enjoying reading all your post race reviews. They are so on point! I’m running my first Pirates 21km and you have now given me an idea of what to expect ..

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I was so bummed that I missed it this year due to being on holiday, I found it tough but good last year. That said I was not as fit as I was last year so probably would have battled to run it but this year I am really trying to focus on gaining strength (if I can EVER shake this fricking phlegm in my throat) and doing more 10km runs and a 21 every second month or so. I also really want to push myself and do The Tough one and maybe (?) get back on track for that marathon training I was starting last year before I got injured and sick.



  3. Well Done Bron, I didn’t think I was ready for a 21km so early in the year, I made the mistake of entering two last year Jan/Feb and I nearly killed myself because I was so unfit. Hopefully with this new routine I will be ready next year to enter this one. It looked amazing, and all the words of encouragement on Twitter definitely made me jelly! Looking forward to running more with you this year!


    • We really are spoilt in Jozi with so many races available to us! But what happens is we do over due it and race every weekend! I’m trying to be more selective and run a couple of 10kms for a change. Looking forward to more runs with you!


  4. Firstly, congratulations! I hope that by the end of next month I can say I’ve completed my first half marathon so thank you for being such a great inspiration. And secondly, this post is so well said. To me everyone who participates is a winner. And bless Jenna (who I follow in awe on twitter) for sending out a huge shout out too. Those are the acts of kindness that motivate and inspire us all. I’ve often bleated on about how people have generally become less kind…however, running (at any speed) has shown me that kindness abounds! Thanks for sharing another great lesson.


    • I know some people raced down the last section but i found it quite uncomfy so took it easy. Maybe knowing the route helps? But yes! You must! And wow, you’re running so well lately!!


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