News Video | Policy | GPs | Hospitals | Medical | Mental Health | Welfare | Search

 


Fear of Water Distant Memory For Tu Marae Participant


Media Statement

Thursday 28 February 2013

Fear of Water Distant Memory For Tu Marae Participant


Ellen Houkamau was terrified of the water. This was a hurdle as the mother-of-three pursued her dream of becoming a police officer. To pass the New Zealand Police physical appraisal test she had to swim a full length of the Gisborne Olympic Pool. She had trouble even putting her face in.


“I had a fear of the water,” says Ellen, who by her own account also ate rubbish food, and was “too big”. “I was, finally getting a chance to try for the police but was 89kg, couldn’t run, and couldn’t swim. So Ellen grabbed life by the scruff of the neck and gave it a good shake.


“That was my changing point. I had always wanted to be a policewoman but I knew I had to get help if I wanted to pass the tests. I had to lose weight and I had to get in that pool.” So she did!

Unafraid to ask for help Ellen organised four months of swim lessons at Gisborne Olympic Pool. She asked a friend for help with food choices and menu; and sought guidance from her school-aged daughter on walking and running.

That was four years ago. Now Ellen will happily knock off a 2km ocean swim, she bikes to work, rarely eats takeaways, and loves her new found energy and fit strong body. “If I can do it others can,” says the inspirational Ngati Porou 45-year-old.

Ellen’s journey to good health will see her at this year’s Turanga Health Tu Marae Duathlon in a team with husband Richard Houkamau.

He has supported her new-found zest for life but until now has only ever held the drink bottle. “I will do the run, he will do the bike, and hopefully next year he will do the whole thing himself,” says Ellen.


The Tu Marae duathlon series is in its second year with the first event this Sunday 3 March starting at Mangatu Marae, Te Whiwhi St, Whatatutu. As well as being a fun healthy day out for young and old it’s a chance to spend time at local Marae.

Over 200 people entered the Whatatutu to Te Karaka duathlon last year says Turanga Health He Oranga Poutama coordinator Stephanie Broughton. “Our Marae are still such a vital part of everyday life so it made sense to us to host the event again and link into places where Maori health and wellbeing are celebrated.”

There are team, individual and tamariki events. The team event is a 7.5km cycle, 4.7km run/walk, 3.5 km cycle, and a 2km run/walk. “Grab whānau members and friends, make up a team, and enter now,” says Stephanie. Information and registration is at www.facebook.com/TuMarae, at Turanga Health in Gisborne, or at Waikohu Health Centre, Te Karaka. Race day entries open from 9am.

Ellen will be there. And she encourages all whānau to give it a go. Having never grown up on Marae she loves the idea of whānau reconnecting with their roots as well as having a fun healthy day out. “I looked at myself, looked at what was happening to my whānau, and changed my mind set. That’s where it starts. Change one person’s attitude in a house and you can change everyone.”


Ellen Houkamau

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 

Game Review: Midsomer Murders Meets First Year Philosophy

Developed by The Chinese Room, Everybody's Gone to the Rapture sees the player exploring what appears to be a recently abandoned idyllic English village trying to figure out where everybody's gone. Spoiler: they've gone to the rapture. (On a serious note, this review contains plot spoilers.) More>>

Scoop Review Of Books: Clear Science

It was really after his move to Wellington, to Victoria University, that it became apparent that Sir Paul Cllaghan was much more than an eminent physicist... More>>

ALSO:

Francis Cook: Weekend SportzMania! All Blacks! Netball!

Sports were on all weekend. I normally don’t write about sports but with Richie McCaw tipped to be the next Prime Minister, and Colin Craig arguing sports are almost as important as politics, I thought “what better time to start!” More>>

ALSO:

Beervana: Aussie Pav Beer Declared Taste Of NZ

In a surprising upset, an Australian beer modelled on the pavlova, created by Brisbane brewery Newstead Brewing, the 250 Beers blog and Scratch Bar, has been announced the winner at the Beervana craft beer festival ‘Flag Brew’ competition, which challenged media and brewing teams to capture the distinctive taste of New Zealand. More>>

ALSO:

Transport: Air NZ Teams Up With All Blacks For Men In Black Video

Inspired by the Columbia Pictures global film franchise Men in Black, Air New Zealand’s latest safety instalment features All Blacks’ Captain Richie McCaw and Dan Carter as Men in Black agents. More>>

ALSO:

World Champions: BRADAS Of Identity Company Take On The World And Win Gold

This is only the second time since NZ has qualified for the HHI world finals that NZ has taken home a GOLD medal in this division. REQUEST Dance Crew being the only other NZ crew to achieve this. New Zealands only other medal this year was Silver for the Royal Family in a very close final in the Megacrew division. More>>

Scoop Review Of Books: Contrary To Popular Belief - Lloyd Geering

Many older Dunediners like myself, and indeed older Presbyterians and others throughout the country, will remember the controversy aroused by the articles and speeches of Professor Geering, Principal of Knox College Theological Hall in the late 1960s... More>>

Get More From Scoop

 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
Health
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news