18 & 19 April 2014
Hanli is an eleven times South African free diving record holder (she can hold her breath for 6 minutes!), filmmaker and avid ocean adventurer. She is also a co-founder of The I Am Water Trust, one of the beneficiaries of this year’s event. Hanli is a passionate ocean lover who believes that humankind and nature cannot survive without each other and her aim is to introduce as many people as she can to the ocean environment, while educating and raising awareness around important conservation issues. She is running the half marathon for the first time ever!
From Fins to Faas - RUNNING FOR THE OCEANS!
Some people are natural runners, they truly are born to run. You see them ambling along the side of the road and over the hills; they seem to glide and pace like Legolas the elf. I’m not one of them. I was born to swim. As a little girl I used to spread my fingers and toes wide convincing myself that I had webbed extremities, like the frogs we used to catch in the farm dam, like an otter that ducks and plays and comes out sleek and smiling.
I sometimes run when I am late, sometimes when I forget a pot on the stove, and sometimes into the ocean with my surfboard when the waves are just THAT GOOD. I love heading up the mountain and lengthening my stride a little… but you wouldn’t call it running if you saw me up there. So why then, you ask, have I just come out of the ocean, red faced and tired… in Sri Lanka?
Well, I am running the TWO OCEANS Half Marathon. You heard me. This free diver is hanging up her fins and pulling on some FAAS takkies, and taking to the road. Well, for the next two weeks, the beach. I am in Sri Lanka to free dive with blue- and sperm whales and for the first time ever in my life, I have packed not only ten bikinis and three fins (one mono) but also two pairs of running shoes!
The humidity here feels like 120% but is probably only around 90 and if I don’t get my run in before the sun rises, it’s impossible with 35+°C and all that moisture! But let me tell you, if you have a motivation as strong as mine, what you thought was impossible becomes obvious! My passion is OCEAN and my tool for protecting her is the I AM WATER Trust, dedicated to sharing the oceans beauty and transformative powers with those who don’t have access to the sea. And this year, I AM WATER is one of the Two Oceans Marathons official beneficiaries.
So, I have been training now for just over six weeks, building up my distance and strength one run at a time, one step at a time… one breath at a time. For the next two weeks that will be here in Sri Lanka, and then some longer runs back in Cape Town before the big day in April.
I am excited, nervous and motivated all at once… almost like the first time I free dived with Tiger Sharks… but different! This is so much harder!
Please support my adventure through my activist page on GIVENGAIN (https://www.givengain.com/activist/72673/). And if you’re also running the half or full marathon this year, why don’t you join me in RUNNING FOR THE OCEANS? Sign up as an activist yourself, and come see us at the EXPO before race day to find out more about how you can RUN FOR THE OCEANS this year!
Love from the Blue,