Hey Holla: Q&A with the trail fairies: Bex & Terri

Do you believe in fairies? This month we talk to Rebecca Henderson (Bex) and Terri Bossy (Tez/Tezzie/T/Twinkle Toes), aka the trail fairies

Where are you from? Bex: I’m originally from the UK and moved to South Africa around 7 years ago after meeting my now husband 😍 I now currently live in Ballito.
Tez: I was born & bred in Bryanston JHB, and then moved to Hillcrest DBN with my family when I was 17yrs old.  And I’ve since recently moved to Ballito. 

How long have you been running at Holla? Bex:  I’ve been to Holla on and off over the last year, but after meeting my “trail fairy” buddy at the beginning of this year, we get a bit grumpy if we don’t manage at least 3 times a week 😂
Tez:  Before my back operation in 2021, I tried to get to Holla every 2nd weekend or so, as I lived in Umhlanga and before that Hillcrest. However, since I moved to Ballito and re-united with Bex at the beginning of this year, (we’re pre-covid Umhlanga gym buddies), I now go 4 to 5 times a week 😂 Talk about being a bit obsessed!

What brought you to the trails? Bex: I only used to train on the road, but after my Comrades back to back I fancied a new challenge! So last year I decided to enter the Karkloof50Miler. Best decision I ever made and although under prepared for it, it was an incredible experience.  I will be attempting it again this year and am already loving the extra training I’m able to do at Holla.
Tez: I have an absolute love for nature and the outdoors ❤️ I’m often referred to as a “bush baby” by my family, because I would rather be outside on an adventure, than stuck indoors. I’m also at my happiest when I’m out on the trails – it’s my true happy place 🥰

Are you training for an event? Which one? Bex: I’m aiming at conquering the Karkloof50Miler again, and this time I will be prepared 😁
Tez: I’m currently training for the North Coast Challenger 😄 My first stage race since my back op… so I’m nervous, but very excited! 

Favourite route at Holla and why? Bex and I have always been a little creative on our runs, because we just love to mix it up, trying something different every time 😋. On Sunday’s we like to go on our “adventures”, i.e. we generally have a planned route but never really stick to it, and we end up just going with the flow and seeing where the trails take us!  But if we had to choose a specific trail, it would definitely be the Green MTB route 😍  You get to weave through the forest… twice (my favourite part), prance around in the sugar cane, and the most rewarding part is the view of the dam! It’s just such a scenic and magnificent route.

What are your trail running essentials? Our trail running essentials would be:

  • good quality & comfortable trails shoes
  • definitely a hydration pack for the longer runs but also a “good to have” for the short ones (Bex and I like to fill ours with electrolytes & magnesium, but water is always a must)!
  • Something that I’ve recently learned from Bex, as she battles to stomach solid food when running, is baby food … Yes! Baby food and it seriously works 😂. They come in those easy ‘squish’ packets, are very nutritious, and are so important for those longer runs.  
  • A cap is always a goodie
  • and then definitely a cellphone. Don’t ever leave without a cellphone!

Best memory/most interesting story from running? Bex: My very first trail I had the opinion that I should be running the same pace as the road. Needless to say I didn’t fall once or twice, but 3 times! The first one was quite hard and I was in the middle of nowhere having a little cry and feeling very sorry for myself. I had a word with myself and really had no choice but to carry on, it’s then that I fell again. I just wanted to be home and could see the finish line, and yes I fell again. With blood on my legs and tears in my eyes I saw my hubby just before the finishing line. All I wanted was a cuddle, but his response was “Don’t stop now, we will sort you out in a minute. Get to the finish line you’re the first lady in!”  Charming I know, but that tough love of his has got me through a few races… and not divorced yet 😂
Tez: My best memory (and one I’ll never forget), was my very first podium finish in July 2017 for the KZNTR Phezulu 20km trail run, where I placed 3rd.

Why has Terri got the nickname twinkle toes? Bex gave me this nickname because of how quick I am when I go downhill on the trails – ‘too brave’ 🤣  I always manage to leave her behind, and then one day she called me twinkle toes and it stuck ever since!

Furthest you have ever run on a trail? Bex: My longest so far is the 50 Miler – so 80.5km
Tez: In my trail running career to date, I’ve only done 28km… but I don’t want to stop there and I’m keen to challenge myself as I get stronger.

What do you love most about Holla Trails? I think we both feel pretty much the same with this answer… It’s just so serene, incredibly beautiful, views to die for, and so many adventures to be had! The Holla community is also so friendly and welcoming! It’s like an instant happy pill and food for the soul the minute you get out of the car. Besides putting us both in better moods, it’s definitely the best way to end off a long hard day at work ❤

Any words of wisdom for someone wanting to start trail running? Bex: Don’t put pressure on yourself to run at a certain pace (or to run at all). I found this hard coming from a road running background. Every trail is different, some are more technical than others, the weather plays a massive part, and you can’t always run them, even if you want to. Enjoy the surroundings, walk when you want to walk, run when you want to run, but most importantly enjoy every peaceful second.
Tez: Take that first step out onto the trails, believe me your heart & soul will thank you later! Enjoy every minute of it and stop to take pictures … loads of them ❤  There’s no need to jump straight into a massive distance – a short run has got you outdoors, and it’s still better than no run at all, and always remember what seems hard now will end up feeling like a warm-up ☺️ And I agree with Bex… walk when you want to walk!