By Amanda Botes
Nkosinathi Ngcongo, this year’s recipient of the Stella Chairman’s Award, has run 13 consecutive Comrades Marathons, eleven of which he has received silver medals for. Nkosinathi’s fastest Comrades was in 2014 where he ran 6h25, and best Two Oceans was in 2012 in a time of 3h46.
This Stella Star grew up in Port Shepstone Ezinqoleni where he enjoyed karate at Inanda Secondary School. When he started working Nkosinathi didn’t have the time to train with the karate group and so decided to give running a try. He enjoyed it so much that he entered Comrades in his very first year of running and has not looked back!
Nkosinathi first ran for Athletics North KZN and Harmony Gold before joining Stella in 2008. He has received silver medals for all ten Comrades he has run for Stella and has been awarded his green number. When asked about his best running memory, Nkosinathi remembers 2010 where he beat his personal best Comrades time by 51minutes, from 7h20 to 6h29!
His advice to new runners is to get fit, not rush things, and get enough mileage in before running long distances. He says that he made the mistake of running Comrades too early in his running journey and didn’t have enough experience at the time.
Nkosinathi enjoys running for Stella because it is a supportive club, especially on Comrades day as Stella provides tables along the route which he appreciates. Nkosinathi especially mentioned Nigel, Alistair, Louise and Lorraine who have supported him over the years. Nkosinathi says that the toughest race he has done is the Zululand 56km and his favourite race is the Down Comrades. He would like to run a sub-6 hour Comrades in the future.
Nkosinathi works for iDube Safety and in his spare time enjoys listening to music and spending time with his wife and two little girls. Nkosinathi, you are an inspiration to all of us at Stella and we are so proud of you!
Nkosinathi’s typical running week:
120-140kms every week.
Saturday- Long Run 40-50kms Easy
Sunday- 10km speed
Monday- Morning 8km, Evening 10km hillwork/cross-country
Tuesday- Morning 10km Easy, Afternoon Speedwork 800m x 8 or 200m x 25.
Thursday – Morning 8km, Afternoon 12km