Pardon Ndhlovu - McKirdy Trained
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Pardon Ndhlovu

Each and every one of us have different motivations to start running. For some, it is a way to escape the stresses of life and for others, they are chasing a goal or maybe challenging themselves (to see if they have the willpower to train for a race). No matter what is driving you to be a better runner, you are at the right place. For myself, running has been the driving force behind the person that I am today.

 

I started running at the age of 13 years old; mainly as a result of a conversation between my twin brother, my dad, and myself when determining the cheapest sport we could participate in. As a child growing up in Zimbabwe, you quickly learn that running or playing soccer are the cheapest sports one can do. Since neither of us were that good in soccer, we naturally gravitated towards running; mainly because the only gear we needed for the sport were running shorts and a t-shirt. Yes, you read that right. What some people see as the most important running accessory (a watch), we could not afford. However, the lack of running shoes did not deter us from the sport, as a matter of fact, we saw it as an advantage to running faster.

I became a decent runner in middle school and continued the sport throughout high school and college, at The University of North Carolina at Pembroke. After college, I served 2.5 years as an Assistant Coach for XC and track at Augusta University while also pursuing a master’s degree in Business Administration. During that period of my life I also continued to focus on advancing my running career. I understand, wholeheartedly, that  it can be challenging trying to balance life, a career, and your family while also striving to be the best runner you can be; but I believe that with proper support, it can be done.

 

I ran my first marathon in 2012 with essentially no training or guidance. I knew nothing about race strategy, fueling, or the importance of water stations; and needless to say, at mile 16, I not only hit a wall, but my calves started cramping and the cramps went all the way up to my tongue. I spent more than an hour in the med tent after finishing the race.

Since 2012, I have successfully completed six marathons and recently competed at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio De Janeiro as a member of the Zimbabwe marathon team where I  finished 41st ( first for my country) which is the highest accomplishment of my life thus far.

 

I enjoy running longer distances, but I also enjoy the satisfaction that comes from helping others achieve that same feeling I get when I cross the finish line. I have experience coaching athletes at all levels and distances–from the 5k to the marathon. My formula for running success can be summed with five concepts; having a well-thought out and individualised training plan, displaying consistency, incorporating recovery/rest, developing a positive attitude and maintaining a strong support system.

I am excited to bring my experience as an athlete and coach to the Mckirdy Trained family. Whether you want to lose weight or begin/improve your running, I am excited to support, encourage, and give you the tools needed to get to the finish line.

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