#InspiringRunners: Ashraf Orrie
You recently saw the moving and inspiring #RunAsOne video featuring Peter John Moses. Here, he writes about a runner who inspires him...
Ever since Ashraf Orrie first put on his running shoes back in 2012 there has been no looking back for the man known to some of his friends as ‘SuperAsh’. Something that started as a hobby to relieve the frustrations of a business owner, whose industry was going through a slump, soon turned into a love affair that grows stronger by the day.
He turned anxious nights of tossing and turning into early morning runs to work his way through the emotional weight on his shoulders. When weight loss from the stresses of work became worrisome, he turned to a more healthy way of eating to build himself back up. For everything life decided to throw at him he chose to believe that there was a solution and that running would help him find it.
He proves this running philosophy with his smiling, happy face at the many races he competes in around Cape Town and all over the Western Cape. Running has also given him many opportunities to travel and he can be found all over the country getting his running ‘fix’. His running achievements are a testament to his love of life. He’s done many races since he started four years ago including many marathons and ultra-marathons.
Even though he started running late in life, it has become a major part of his story and no matter where it takes place, chances are you are bound to spot him. He is well known as a sort of ‘selfie-king’ often crouched with his camera phone ever ready for the perfect action picture of the many friends he has made through running.
Ashraf is not afraid to take on the road or the trail, on many occasions even on the same day. He does all kinds of distances from 10km’s, 21km’s, marathons, right up to ultra-marathons and multi day events. He is a man whose active lifestyle and adventurous spirit has inspired many in the running community. He is active at his running club Itheko AC and many other clubs have been blessed by his generous spirit when it comes to sharing his many adventures
An impressive hall of medals decorates the den of his house; they include 4 double OMTOM hauls of 22km trail and 56km ultra medals earned on consecutive days. Then there are also 3 consecutive Comrades medals with his last one being a personal best run of 09h45 on the ‘up-run’ of 2015.
His dedication is something to behold, during 2015 he ran 1500km in race distance and 3000km in training distance not to mention the cycling and swimming that he adds to his training program as well. He is putting in the amount of training you would expect from a full time athlete not a part timer like Ashraf, but he shows no signs of slowing down or even wanting too and his love for being active is unquestionable.
Currently he is training two times a day, at four in the morning and at six at night, averaging 90 – 120km per week running, 140km cycling and 14km swimming!
It is his passion that keeps him going.
He recently made the step up to the half Iron Man, competing in his first race at IM 70.3 in Buffalo City, and crossed the finish line just over the seven hour mark.
“I’ve decided to take on the full IM in April and have been training hard toward that goal, it’s exciting and I love the energy even though there certainly are doubts in my mind but I trust my training and will do my best.”
Ashraf is a dedicated father, husband and family man. His active exploits has influenced his family to become runners as well and that makes him very proud.
“Seeing my family do well is my biggest inspiration. We all live an active lifestyle and they understand the 04h00 a.m. training sessions and the constant travelling for races.”