About Lisa de Speville

Adventure racing author, athlete and founder of FEAT (Fascinating Expedition ad Adventure Talks) and ar.co.za, Lisa is keenly interested in anything related to outdoor adventure, especially orienteering and trail running.

Author Archive | Lisa de Speville

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Trekking is the decider in adventure racing

Trekking is one of adventure racing’s foundation disciplines and arguably is the one that should be given the highest respect. Strengthening your feet, doing the endurance training for the demands of trekking and developing strong navigation skills are key to successful trekking – whether the stage takes two or 36 hours. All three elements should be trained and trained again. As adventure racing legend Ian Adamson says in his book, Runner’s World Guide to Adventure […]

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A car-free Sandton CBD this October

As the administrator for my club, Adventure Racing Club, I get a bunch of emails from the Provincial sporting bodies to which we are affiliated. One of them is Central Gauteng Cycling and over the last few years I’ve seen comms here and there regarding the plans and implementation for making Jo’burg a cycle- and pedestrian-friendly city. I haven’t paid too much attention to it as the commuting areas are not where I live; and […]

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11 Maxims to improve your fitness

I love fortune cookies. It’s the frivolous words of wisdom and positive prophesies that I enjoy more than the cookie itself. While preparing a special treat for a night-time, orienteering event that I organise, I went in search of pearls; those wise words that motivate and inspire and say it like it is. These 11 are my favourites. 1. Ask yourself: ‘Can I give more?’. The answer is usually: Yes. I’m not much in favour […]

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Practical and sentimental kit choices

People are magpies, indiscriminately hoarding items that may be of use. And when they pack for races, they tend to do the same, throwing in this and that ‘just in case’. I asked a number of adventure racers to reveal the unusual items lurking in their backpacks and crates, whether they’re practical or sentimental kit choices. To eat or to share Tasty treats offer comfort to both the provider and the recipient, who may be […]

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Your race is too expensive

I like marketing guru Seth Godin and I’ve been receiving his daily blog posts for a few years now, says Lisa de Speville. Locally, there has been recent discussion around a mountain run that has bumped up its entry fees – in the region of around R3,000. That makes my R480 for Forest Run look positively puny – yet I don’t have many of the bells-and-whistles that this event has in place. A few people […]

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Expedition Africa: Adventure racing has come of age

With the third Expedition Africa now done and dusted, all the happenings can now be brought together and put into one final report. I braved the cold to bring you up-to-date reports on my ar.co.za website. Read the race report here HQ is dismantled. The media room is devoid of laptops and cameras. CP markers have been collected. Racers are home – or still travelling home. ‘Friend Requests’ zip around as everyone involved reaches out […]

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Training Partners: How To Get Over First Date Jitters

“I hope I’m not too slow…” “I’m not feeling strong enough…” “Will they hold me back?” Meeting up with someone – even a person you know well – to run, ride or paddle together for the first time can be more daunting than a first date. Regular first-dater and multisporter Lisa de Speville, explains how it doesn’t have to be.   There are expectations (will you be compatible training partners) and doubts (around your own […]

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Calitz sets new record with 12 Platteklip summits

He did it! With 12 summits of Platteklip Gorge during Saturday’s K-Way Platteklip Charity Challenge, K-Way athlete Andre Calitz is the undisputed master of Platteklip Gorge. The heavy cloud cover and cool conditions set the stage for Calitz’s record attempt. He cracked the first 760-metre summit in only 35 minutes 36 seconds and was on to his third lap before most of Cape Town had woken up. With seven laps completed within six-and-a-half hours, he […]

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The Nataniel, Fat Boy and Not Drinking Alcohol Link

I have always liked Nataniel and I think that if we met in person that we’d get along like a house on fire. He used to have a show on tv – it was some years ago and I always made a point of watching it because I found him so funny, interesting and entertaining. He regularly presents shows at theatres and although I had never been to one they had caught my eye. Last […]

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Off to Abu Dhabi

Ready for Abu Dhabi Adventure Challenge After six months of preparation with my new team, we’re ready for Abu Dhabi Adventure Challenge. I’m racing with Steven Erasmus, Lizelle van der Merwe and Lizelle Smit. We packed our crates this afternoon Sunday 5 December and will hit the airport by 10h30 tomorrow (Monday). We arrive in Abu Dhabi at midnight and will be picked up and taken to the race hotel. The hotel is the Park […]

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