Vitality Run series to kick off in Soweto this weekend

Event part of five aimed at getting people to live healthy lifestyle

Nkareng Matshe Sports editor
Team Vitality Club manager, Peteni Kuzwayo, centre.
Team Vitality Club manager, Peteni Kuzwayo, centre.
Image: supplied

The Johannesburg leg of the popular Discovery Vitality Run series returns this weekend, with organisers aiming to get even more people to ditch unhealthy lifestyles and exercise more.

“This is a series made for us social runners,” said Peteni Kuzwayo, Team Vitality Club’s manager, about the five-race running series which begins in Orlando, Soweto, this Saturday.

It will once again feature a 5km, 10km and a half-marathon, making it accommodative for beginners and experienced runners aiming to gain fitness to target the rest of running calendar year, which includes the Sanlam Cape Town Marathon and African Bank Soweto Marathon, among others.

Launched in 2017 initially as a four-race event, Soweto was added to the Vitality series calendar two years ago, and Kuzwayo is hoping for an increase in the number of participants, who will line up at Orlando Community Hall on Saturday at 7am.

“Soweto has always had a great running community and last year we experienced the warmth of the people there,” he said. "Our event marks the start of preparations for the Soweto Marathon (taking place in November) and the route profile includes iconic landmarks such as the famous Vilakazi Street and the Soweto Towers.”

Soweto-born Kuzwayo – who finished the Comrades Marathon in under nine hours two weeks ago – added the core purpose of the series is to get people healthy. He has confessed to having led an unhealthy lifestyle himself before the running bug bit him 15 years ago.

“As Team Vitality Club we endeavour to help people get fit. Whether you start with a park run or a 5km, we want to be the conduit to help you achieve your goals. Some people who are Comrades Marathon finishers today started there.

"I was overweight and asthmatic, then I started running in 2009. By 2011 I was doing my first Comrades. This year I did my 11th. We always preach that running is about correcting poor lifestyle choice, and I’m an example of that. Running set me on a corrective path.”

The Joburg series runs from Saturday until August, and it includes races at Rockies Gerald Fox Memorial Race (Zoo Lake, July 14), Randburg Harries Challenge (July 28), Old Eds in Houghton (August 11) and the Wanderers Club in Illovo on August 25.

Entries cost R120 for the 5km, R170 (10km) and R220 for the half-marathon (excluding temporary licence).

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