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  • Writer's pictureMosibodi Whitehead

Michelle Damand runs 63,3km in 3 days to raise funds for breast cancer

"I love everything about running, but mostly the fact that it is my time. The time I use to invest in myself. I do some of my best thinking while I am running, especially during my solo runs," said Michelle Damand after spending three days running three consecutive half marathons. The 26-year old is yet another runner who has joined the movement to use what is deeply personal to her, for the benefit of others. This weekend the RunZone member completed three 21km runs (some in the pouring rain) as part of her initiative to raise funds for breast cancer.

Damand completed the final of her three half marathons at The Cradle of Humankind during the Run Zone Summer Series Run. This run was the fastest of the 3 where she set a new half marathon BP. 2:09. Photo Credit: Michelle Damand.

"Fortunately, I don't have a family member or friend who has/had breast cancer, but I feel that there is more to be done for women to get screened for breast cancer. Especially the women in rural areas of South Africa," said the ILoveBoobies ambassador. ILoveBoobies is a non-profit organisation supported by the Cancer Association of South Africa whose mandate is to educate and perform clinical screenings for South African women who have limited funds and access to medical facilities.

Those women were on Michelle's mind when she suffered up the hills of Krugersdorp and through the pouring rain in order to complete her challenge. "On Friday morning I ran in the pouring rain. And no, I did not feel like quitting. I just reminded myself why I am doing this," was her philosophy.

Michelle conquers the pouring rain on Friday 1 October 2021 on her way to completing three half marathons in three days for breast cancer. Photo Credit: Michelle Damand.

Her achievement is made all the more impressive when one considers that she is still fairly new to running. "I've struggled with self-confidence throughout my life, back in 2019 I felt as if I was in a rut, I wanted to get out there, get out of my comfort zone and meet new people. Since I started running my self-confidence skyrocketed. I am a different person to who I was back then. I often hear people talking about how shy and quiet I was, just there chilling in the background," she shared.

This newfound self-confidence was an essential part of Damand's training and preparation, which saw her completed 63,3km in three days without a hitch and hungry for more. "Physically I am fine, I trained to be able to do the 3 runs. Mentally, I am extremely proud of what I was able to achieve. I do however feel like what now? I need a new goal to work towards now," she concluded. Michelle has raised a total of R16 569, and is aiming to collect a total of R20 000 by the end of October. Go to to get involved.

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