Healthy Heroes

TRAIL|Issue 36

Healthy Heroes
Five South African trail runners who are healthcare workers tell us about COVID-19 and their running. Zimkhitha Qashani, Samantha Holtzhausen, Jannas Du Plessis, Aurore Mpinga, and Fran Diesel share their stories and how to stay safe.

Zimkhitha Qashani (34) of Durban is a perioperative nurse.

Proudest trail achievement

I started trail running in 2018. My proudest trail running achievement was sixth place in my age category at the inaugural Runduro SA (13km) at Shongweni Dam in October 2019. I’m a social runner, and in some trail races I finish as a sweeper, so sixth is my best achievement so far.

Pandemic advice

It is important to continue to follow good hygiene practices! Wash your hands with soap and water or use a sanitiser. Clean frequently touched surfaces on a daily basis.

Wear a mask or Buff over your mouth and nose when running. I find it easier running wearing a Buff than a mask.

Good sleep can maintain your immune system and relieve stress.

Samantha Holtzhausen (31) of Cape Town is a cardiorespiratory physiotherapist.

Proudest trail achievement

At the Cableway Charity Challenge in 2019, I was running for a cause close to my heart. I pledged to keep going from sunrise to sunset, and I did. I completed six summits, gave my mental game a good go and learned how to keep pushing on an empty tank. It was such a brilliant, humbling, and epic day out!


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Issue 36