#TeamRed athlete Usisipho ‘Usi’ Nteyi strides towards marathon glory, embodying holistic wellness and fitness

“Running a marathon terrifies me – 42.2 km is a long distance. But that’s precisely why I started running.” – Usi Nteyi
  • Lives: Cape Town
  • Occupation: Professional stunt performer
  • Age: 27
  • IG: @usimoves.alot

Born and bred in Cape Town, Usi Nteyi isn’t one to shy away from challenges. Entering and winning the Biogen Face of Fitness 2022 is a prime example (read more). Her latest pursuit? Conquering the marathon distance. Despite the daunting nature of the challenge, Usi embraces it as an opportunity for personal growth and development.

Usi wants to embrace the challenge and face her fears in search of personal growth and development – both mental and physical. She believes facing a daunting task can teach important lessons about failure and chasing your dreams.

“It’s important that you don’t take yourself too seriously. Realise that it’s okay to make a u-turn and start again, and that you don’t need to wait to chase your dreams. You don’t need to wait for the start of a new year, month, or week, or a new chapter in your life. Start where you are with what you have.”

And that is part of the allure of running for Usi – its simplicity. “You really don’t need much to run – just a pair of running shoes, your mind, and your breath. Just put one foot in front of the other and you’re running!” 

Join Usi on her quest to conquer the marathon distance by following her inspiring journey on Instagram @usimoves.alot and visiting www.biogen.co.za. Witness firsthand as she pushes her limits, defies expectations, and proves that with determination and perseverance, anything is possible.

If you need more reasons to start running today (beyond Usi’s inspirational words), consider the following benefits: 

  1. You’ll lose weight and burn fat
    Running is a high impact weight-bearing activity, making it one of the most effective exercises for losing weight. While many people will tell you that this makes running risky in terms of injury, if you’re strong and supple (and injury free), the impact and the resultant high intensity is actually beneficial.That’s because the relative effort required to run means you’ll burn more calories per minute than just about any other activity.
  2. There are many health benefits
    Running improves your health by strengthening your cardiovascular and respiratory systems. That means a healthier heart, better circulation and more efficient lungs. It also boosts your immune system.
  3. Your brain benefits, too
    Research shows that running can improve your brain function in a number of ways. One of the major benefits is that it improves brain plasticity – it’s ability to change.This happens as new connections (neurons) develop between cells in various important brain areas. Aerobic exercise also promotes new brain cell formation, which improves various functions, including memory, movement and cognitive function (your ability to think and reason).
  4. You’ll feel better
    Running releases endorphins – those ‘feel-good’ hormones such as serotonin and dopamine that can elevate your mood.

Usi adopts a flexible approach to nutrition, drawing from her South African and Xhosa heritage. She understands the importance of simplicity in diet and eating, emphasising the need for sustainable and long-lasting results over fad diets.