Occupancy: Public Health Masters Student at UCT and Fitness instructor at PointPilates
Favorite Kway Product: Swan Down Jacket
Favorite quote: " I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me" Phil 4:13
A healthy mind, a strong body and a happy inner-self is important for successful running – this is the strong belief of K-Way ambassador Cleo Albertus, who’s steadily working her way ever higher up the podiums of trail races in the Western Cape.
With a background in psychology, and currently studying her Masters in Public Health, Cleo understands the importance of balance, and applies the principle to all aspects of her life – not that it’s easy, of course: there’s working, studying and training to be done, and yet on top of an already busy life, Cleo is also a trained pilates instructor.
Originally from Johannesburg and schooled in Pietermaritzburg, Cleo moved to Cape Town in 2011. She’s always been sporty, but only started taking running seriously in 2013, after running a parkrun with her dad just for fun. Since then, she’s clocked up road and trail races, and across a range of distances from short to long.
“I have no preference between road or trail, I just love running! Living in Cape Town means my road routes are almost just as beautiful as the trails, and enjoying both is a double bonus!”
With her strength being hills and climbs, Cleo makes full use of her local routes to put herself through her paces, and living where she does gives her many challenging options to choose from.
“My go-to training route is from Seapoint along the promenade towards Camps Bay, then up Kloof Road to Kloof Nek, and back down the same way. It’s beautiful, with the ocean in view the whole way, and it allows for a great hill workout.”
Cleo placed third female at the Three Peaks Challenge (50km) in 2017, the furthest distance she’d ever run, and it sparked her hunger for more trail challenges. She took on the same event in 2018, and this time won it. Just two weeks later she raced the Skyrun 38km, and again was top of the podium.
These achievements, together with her road PB of 91 min at the Two Oceans 21km (2018), rank high on her list of memorable racing moments, and no doubt will soon be joined by many more!
Cleo is a strong believer in strength of mind for her running, and that mental health is an important aspect in one’s successful preparation for racing.
“If you’re not on form physically, emotionally and mentally, you won’t be able to run as well as you should. A strong mind is a powerful tool, particularly when running ultras – when times get tough as they do during the longer distances, you have to depend on your inner strength for the resilience to push through.”