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Tribesports User of the Week: Helen T

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Posted by Helen T under Running, Yoga, Judo, Taekwondo on 24 April 2013 at 11:00 PM

Helen T with her dog on the beachWhich Challenge has been your toughest and which have you been most proud of?

As a self confessed TS ‘addict’ the  To do list - finish 50% of my Challenges took enormous will power to complete and was the toughest.

I am most proud of my First ten km run in under an hour. I was rained upon, saw a beautiful rainbow, a cloud filled sunset and then finished in the dark. What makes it really special is it only happened because of Get off the internet and do some exercise now Challenge!

In your bio, you say that you're recovering from injury, how much has yoga helped you in your progress to recovery?

Yoga has helped me to maintain a positive attitude whilst recuperating, by not only maintaining my muscle tone, but helping to even out discrepancies between my sides, increasing my flexibility and providing new fitness goals. Requiring patience and good static balance (something I’m lacking), I often fall over mid pose, laugh, pick myself up and start again. I love the little triumphs that come with mastering a new pose and being able to incorporate it smoothly into a routine. 

When did you start Tae Kwon Do and Judo?

Returning to University at 30 I chose Judo to help me stay fit. Partnered with the only other female we learnt how to fall safely before learning a simple throw. I instantly fell in love. I was amazed at how one second someone could be pushing me and the next they’re flat on their back in front of me. University competitions enabled me to discover that there were other female players out there, and that they also loved the sport of judo for its ‘gentle way’ of dealing with an attacker and the usefulness of the falling techniques in everyday life, and of course because it’s just great fun.

Judo Helen T

I took up Tae Kwon Do a few years later, also through the university, wanting to learn some kicks. 

Helen T runningIn the past, we've featured your Chin up progression Challenges and tips - where are you on the chin up ladder?

Performing unassisted chin ups continue to be a work in progress. I was on the verge of completing Chin up progression #4 just before I started my new physically demanding job. I’ve struggled to exercise after work so I’ve slid a bit backwards. This year's aim to do 5 unassisted chin ups remains. 

What would be your desert island sports kit? 

 My favourite sports dress, a mountain bike and a cargo net.

What's your next big Challenge on the horizon?

Cycling is my current challenge, I’m looking forward to seeing how far I go

How did you sort out that Can-Can outfit?

It's pretty simple...took on the Can-Can high kicks Challenge. It just wouldn't have been right without the proper outfit, so  I combined an old belly dancing skirt and harem pants with a full colourful skirt, put in a bit of practice as it's a lot harder then it looks, then had some fun with it with a friend. 

Can-Can Challenge

What's the story behind this epic finish line photo?

Helen T race finisher

Beginning 6 months earlier, at the gym, and to my horror, I found that I could neither run 2ks or for 10mins. Having always been active, I set myself the goal of running 2ks in under 10 mins. However in two months, it was proving to be elusive so I moved outdoors. With the help of my nephew, I ran my longest continuous run: 2 km in 7mins 39 - stunning everyone especially me.

Elated with how far I’d come, I picked up my childhood dream of a marathon, setting the goal of several runs and then a half marathon before I’m 50. I’d progressed to running my first 10 k’s when I became quite ill and couldn’t exercise for 6 weeks. Two weeks before the 7.5km Resolution run, I started walking but struggled to jog, so I transferred into the 4.3km event.  Prepared to pull out if I had to and just have fun.

Starting in the Adelaide Zoo, the longer distance runners were first, and then mine. Buoyed by the atmosphere; my legs were unable to help themselves and ran at the rear of the elite pack for the first 1.5 kms. When I got left behind, I was content to cheer on and talk to the 7.5km walkers that I passed. From the turnaround point I was on my own and I was so happy to cross the finishing line I couldn’t help but jump. One week ago, I’d struggled to run, a month ago even that was out of the question, and yet today I’d run the whole way and in a decent time. I was in awe at the healing power of our bodies. 

From running I have learnt that what seemed impossible can be possible. Every run left me in wonder at how far I’d come in a short space of time, and what can be achieved if you are determined and willing to put in the effort.  If you have a dream, go for it, set goals to help you along the way and if fate forces you to tack another tack, by all means take it. You’ll never know what’s around the corner if you don’t look.

Which Tribesports user makes your day?

Jane H  and Yvonne H because they are both always happy, supportive and have great senses of humour. 

What's your favourite quote?

 “Do not let what you cannot do interfere with what you can”

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