Bula everyone,

On Saturday 14th October my Foundation in Fiji, a registered sports, health and education charity will be hosting our annual Dash for Diabetes 5km run and family fun day at Buckhurst Park, Suva. The event is in partnership with Asco Motors Toyota and is a way in which the Foundation can encourage Fijians to become active and healthy and also promote Diabetes awareness.

The 5km event is an achievable distance for any beginner and here are some of our handy tips to ensure that whether you walk, run, hop or skip your way to the finish line you are prepared.

Always have the correct footwear: Do not leave it until the day of the event to try out your new trainers as this may cause blisters or discomfort. Ensure that you have worn in your footwear and also have comfortable socks. Walking around your living room does not count as wearing in your trainers, you will need to go out and get your feet moving and ensure your footwear allows your feet to breathe whilst sweating.

Ensure you are hydrated: During any physical activity your body will sweat causing you to lose vital salts and water. It is important that you keep your body hydrated before, during and after the event. If you experience headaches after the event this is a key indication that you need to increase the amount of water that you are putting into your body, especially if the weather is hot and humid.

Listen to your body: Some people know that they need to carbo-load the night before a big event in the form of eating pasta or rice which is ideal for long distance events. However, this is only a 5km distance which shouldn’t dive too much into your energy reserves, however you should ensure that you have a good breakfast on the morning such as a Weet-bix breakfast which will be provided for free at the event from 7:30am onwards. Ensure you allow your body to adjust to the times until you are no longer feeling you need to walk and you are predominately jogging or walking for the entire distance.

From my personal experience as an athlete this is my advice:

‘The best thing you can do is stay focused on your training goal, the mind is a powerful tool and is capable of anything if we are prepared to put in the time. You must ensure your body is well fuelled in order for it to give you the results you want and last of all make the Dash for Diabetes the beginning of your lifestyle change.’

We hope to see you alongside myself and the PCF team at the Dash for Diabetes 5km event on Saturday 14th October at Buckhurst Park, Suva from 7:30am -11:30am.

Vinaka Vakalevu

Petero and the PCF team

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