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Stephen Muzhingi – Comrades 2013

AKA – “The One Legged Lion” he was given this name in 2013, when he ran the Comrades Marathon 2013 with a torn calf Muscle. The specialists said that he would not make it 10km into the 89km race.  Many have said he is probably the hardest man in Running, a mind that is so strong, and determination to always give 200% effort.

I may get criticized for allowing him to run Comrades Marathon 2013, and I take this criticism, but how do you keep an athlete off the road when he has prepared for 8 months  for the race. Our deal in 2013 was that he can start and if his leg is painful he agreed he will drop out. Each time he came past me, which was +- every 10km he said he was fine and would run with a normal stride. Once he had passed me he fought on. I kept yelling at him to get off the road and get into the car, but he wouldnt have it. At around 50km i told him that if he was not in contention for a top 10 finish then i would pull him out the race. Not really knowing how i would do this, as it would not really look that good on TV, and in front of the thousands of spectators that line the roads, if i was to run up to him and tackle him off the road like a rugby player would bring down an opponent.  As to do this was the only way i was going to get him off the road.

But as he was having none of it, he soldiered on. So all I was left to do is support him all the way and encourage him.

He knew he could not win the race again in 2013, but he did remarkably well and finished in tenth position. Although i was not happy with him continuing the full race distance, I can only admire his mental toughness and strength, and one has to give the man credit for this. I knew that by him completing the race we would then have to dig deep and go all out for rehab and recovery.

To this i am happy to say that his injury has healed tremendously well and in fast time, and he has been training since December 2013 for the Two Oceans 56km and Comrades Marathon 2014 races.

If he was able to run 89km with one good leg, i can only look forward to an exciting comeback in 2014 when he competes with 2 legs to race on.

 

We look forward to an exciting year with Stephen at Full strength.

Comrades 2013

Stephen fighting hard during the race

Comrades 2013

The down sections of the course were particularly painful for him

Comrades 2013

A man determined to finish

Comrades 2013

Still determined

Comrades 2013

The One Legged Lion 🙂

Comrades 2013

Full concentration – His mind fighting with his body

Comrades 2013

Its Over – 10th position in arguably the Hardest Distance race in World Running – Legend – Respect

comrades marathon 2013

Ahh yes, he feels it Geoff

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watching his stride as Geoff from Adidas has him on the strike plate checking his feet and striking on the ground

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mmm yes, the pain is in there

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We all feel it, and tense times as we wait for final prognosis from geoff

comrades marathon 2013-65

Tough session completed –

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Comrades Registration at Sponsors stand 32GI

Geoff Batch of Adidas working on Stephens Leg

Geoff Batch of Adidas working on Stephens Leg

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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