Skip to main content


Showing posts from February 5, 2023

South Africa Race-Cation Day 4

After a small snack while working on the computer (the internet is a bit slow compared to what we are used to so it’s tested our patience a few times) we went for a ~40 min run. We first made our way through Gordon’s Bay along the water. We were stopped by a local black lady who asked about our Naked hydration belt. She had never seen anything like it and wished she could have something like it to carry her water when she walks. This was a quick reminder of what we often take advantage of – like Amazon Prime and access to almost anything in America. If it wasn’t for the race and her being a different size, I would have given her my hydration belt and flasks. We then ran a few miles toward Strand along the road (mostly off-road). My legs felt a bit tired but I was enjoying the scenery and warm air. Every person on the side of the road was friendly and gave us a wave, smile or cheer. There were a few people casually riding bikes (white people) on the side of the road. It’s unfortunate th

South Africa Race-Cation - Day 3

Feeling a bit more rested on day 3, we started the morning with an open water swim. I thought we were swimming in the Indian ocean (which would be a first for us) but it was the Atlantic. Still, the furthest south I've ever swam in the ocean. Prior to our trip to SA, I emailed a lady that I found online who was in charge of the local masters group. She connected me with the Gordon Bay Sea Swim group on WhatsApp so that I could stay up to date with all the local swims. An older gentleman (Gordon – appropriately named 😊) said he would meet me and Karel for a swim, along with Harold – the local legend who has completed over 100 English Channel and Robin Crossing swims. The water was a little cool (upper 60’s) but with the warm sun at 8:30am, it felt prefect in our Roka wetsuits. We swam to and back from the old harbor which was ~1000 meters away. When we got there, we could stand on the sand (low tide) and regroup. Gordon was very helpful in that he would tell us where to swim as it

South Africa Race-Cation - Day 2

We woke up to the new sights and smells of South Africa. Our Airbnb was in the perfect location in Gordon’s Bay – just a few blocks (~10 min walk) to the beach and three blocks from the grocery store (SPAR). We could see the ocean from the owners balcony (which we could use). The owners of the Airbnb live on the top floor and we had the entire bottom floor (three bedrooms and three bathrooms + kitchen, family room, outside patio and a place to park our rental car (I used Hertz – Rav4 SUV) inside their gated house. The owners of the house (Hester and Thys) were extremely welcoming and provided us with lots of recommendations and advice before our arrival. After catching up on a few emails, we walked a few blocks to the Spar grocery store. picked up a few items at Woolsworth as well (kinda like a Fresh Market for those in the states). It was a bit easier to shop for food compared to Europe as everything was in English so we had fun collecting familiar and different foods to add to our gr

South Africa Race-Cation - Travel Day

Karel knows how much I love international travel (and warm weather) so late this summer, when he mentioned to me that we should participate in Xterra South Africa on January 22nd, 2023 I was excited for the opportunity to visit a new continent. After a few months of researching, planning and travel hacking, I was able to put together an affordable two weeks to experience the sights, culture, trails, animals, food and people of South Africa. I realize travel is a privilege and we had/have to work really hard to travel but it's something that makes my life feel whole. My favorite type of travel is when I can combine culture and nature - alongside riding my bike in new places.  If you have a trip to South Africa on your bucket list - or anywhere in this world - I strongly encourage you to start planning. With a bit of saving and a lot of planning, you too can have a life-changing trip. For those who are curious, here is the breakdown of our trip (I'm pretty proud of myself for pl