Street Athlete: Tahirah
– What’s your sport?
– How did you get into it?
Starting from sloth levels that far surpass couch-potato, I begun dragging myself around my block before this bad-ass I know invited me to be part of her project, Bangs on the Run 2. I ran my first half-marathon, Run To The Beat, in 2011 slowly and painfully. Though I swore during the course I’d never do it again, I caught the bug.
– What’s been your best moment in your sport so far?
I have a couple, and none of them are performance based.
The first is during Amsterdam half-marathon, 2012. During the race I hurt my leg, so I hobbled towards 20KM where I knew my family and friends from Run Dem Crew (of which I’m a member) were waiting. But I couldn’t even anticipate the feeling as their roars got me to the finish line.
My second is the Reggae Half-Marathon in Jamaica. Running in paradise was a smorgasbord of great moments, but the best was meeting a ridiculously inspiring woman en route who shared her story of 8 half-marathons and hip surgery. We held hands and charged over the finish-line together.
– What motivates you?
Knowing I’m my only competition, and that I need to be the best version of me. While I celebrate my achievements I know I’ve got a long way to go and I can’t get there if I stop moving!
– How do you push yourself when you don’t want to train?
I remind myself that the days I don’t want to train are when I need to train the most.
– What’s your favourite motivational quote?
Less of a quote and more of a mantra; amidst my hardest mile or toughest gym rep I repeat, “I can do anything for 10 seconds.” – If I surpass that 10 seconds of resistance and wanting to give up, I can usually go on for longer.
– What events do you have lined up for this year?
None this year as I’m doing my first marathon in 2014, my 6th half marathon, Tough Mudder, and I’m eyeing up a cycling event. I’m focussing on getting faster, stronger and improving technique and fitness level for next year.
– What role does fitness play in your life?
It’s omnipresent. It’s part of my everyday as I don’t approach fitness just as being something confined to the gym or a run route. Between trying new things like bouldering or pole dancing, to choosing walking and cycling as my preferred transport I factor fitness into everything.
– Do you draw inspiration from any other types of sport?
I focus in strength training when I’m not running (like now), so seeing the discipline of boxers and body builders in training inspires me.
– What’s your top training tip?
Set goals that scare you a bit, but not so much you make them feel unattainable.
– What do you do in your down time?
I write, listen to incredible music and travel a lot. Some how fitness still finds it’s way into all of those too!