Q&A with Walter Shumase

Q&A with Walter Shumase

Name: Walter Shumase
Age: 49 
Club: Xcel Running Club
How long have you been running?
I started running in March 2016 at the Durban Park Run, North Beach. Running became an outlet and a means of purpose. My first marathon was Mandela Marathon in August 2016, with a time of 4hr 16min.

When do you start training for Comrades? 16-17 weeks prior to Comrades. 
What is the longest training run you do in preparation? Longest is 50Km. 
What shoes do you wear? Nike Vapour Fly 3 for Comrades or Alpha Fly 2-3 for Marathons. Vapour Fly have a lower profile. Alpha Fly have a higher profile and the drop gives more bounce.

What socks do you wear? I’m always loyal to my feet. I always I want to wear socks that best match my shoes. I often have to wear 2 pairs together.  

I received my first pair of Gilnokie Xcel Club socks at the park run on Saturday the day before Comrades. I went back to the hotel and tried them on. They fitted perfectly with my shoes.  The comfort was good. I felt good so, I decided that I would break the number 1 rule of "don’t change anything 1 day before race day". I decided I’m going to run Comrades in them.

The run was super! No blisters, no discomfort. They just worked well. Super comfortable.

What does your race day prep look like? The day before: shake out run just to loosen up. My first love, a 5km park run. Then legs up, hydrate and relax, maybe watch a bit of TV.

Morning pre-race (32gi) meal or in the past, a banana, some peanut butter and brown bread.

When leaving the house I have 500ml water and hydrate.

And I keep 3 gels in my pocket to be used every 1 hour.

How many Comrades have you run? My first was in 2017 and I have run 5 Comrades in total.  

Do you prefer the UP or the DOWN run? I’m absolutely a down runner. The most important thing is to make sure you have strong Quads for down runs.

What was your time and medal for the 2023 Comrades Marathon? Silver in a time of 7hrs 25min, my fastest so far.

“My age is going up and my times are going down”

This my journey

What is your advice for someone wanting to start running? Know why you want to run. Start with small distances. at your own pace. From there you can start to benchmark against your own previous time. It's you against your last PB. It's always about you improving yourself. It's awlays about you achieving.

Commit. Be Consistent. Act (Action).

Have you run any other marathons or half marathons?

Mandela Marathon x 4
Cape Town Marathon x 5
Two Oceans x 4
Sowetan Marathon x2
Deloits Durban x 5
Istanbul Turkey x 2
Paris Marathon x 1
Berlin
Chicago
Tokyo
Boston  

Which is your favourite?

Tokyo and Cape Town Marathon

I've started a program for Cape Town Marathon focussed on mileage.

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