India Challenge

The training has been going well, but it's been a real slow grind getting back to where I need to be. The Madagascar Challenge had taken more out of me than I realised. Firstly there was the massive weight loss of 22kg and then the recovery from the continuous attach of the parasites, bilharzia, the bout of Denghi fever and the rest of the bugs that I had picked up on the island. My weight back up to just over 9kg and most of my muscle mass back, the running niggles now started.

I had the pleasure of Joining Professor Jake Gerwels (The chairman of the Nelson Mandela Children’s Foundation), and the Naspers staff at head office in Cape Town to pay tribute to Nelson Mandela on his birthday by taking up his challenge to give up of our time to make a difference in someone’s life.

Now begins the hardest parts of the journey. Having done most of the grind, putting of the event together, getting sponsors on board setting up the team, the final planning, preparation and organisation over the past year is now behind me. Now it really starts, the mental and physical preparation, the training of mind and body, getting it to work in unison and slowly pull in the wide angle of focus that one has in normal day to day life, this process now has to bring focus to a pinpoint to culminate in one thing and one thing only and that the run. In order to do this I have to systematically sort out all outstanding things that I am working on. Each time I complete one of the tasks, I feel that the focus is brought in another notch and it's onto the next until the day that I leave for India with no distractions, but the focus of the run. Basically end up with blinkers on to the peripherals around me and just see the run ahead.

It was my first trip to the magnificent Albert Lutuli hospital in KZN. I was invited to join up with Prof Anil Madre, Mehul and his wife Khushma, of Operation Smile to be part of a magical moment – to experience corrective surgery, giving a child his God given right to a smile. No matter how many times I have experienced this, it is still so heart wrenching to see these little children with their clefts.

The first thing that struck me was in amongst the madness of the city, wall to wall people, every conceivable space being utilised floor either accommodation or to trade, some sort of little business to eek out a living from this manic city, there was very

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