Olympic Hurdler Gézelle Carleigh Magerman

Gezelle Carleigh Magerman

Gézelle Carleigh Magerman is a 400m and 400m hurdle specilist. Her athletics career began when she was in primary school.

“Since day one I’ve loved running, mainly because I love the feeling it gives me. I’ve had to balance school and athletics from a young age, so it’s not difficult for me to adapt to a changing environment. Not only did I do athletics, but I also managed to fit in monkey-nasticks, tennis, netball and hockey, too. When I got to high school I had to make a choice between netball and athletics because the seasons clashed. It was difficult to choose because I loved netball and played for the Western Cape at SA Schools, but I decided to rather focus on athletics, which is proving to be one of the greatest choices I ever made.”

Sports discipline: 400m Hurdles

Age: 20

Resides:  University of Pretoria, studying sport psychology,1st year


  • 2016 Athletics South Africa Championships – 1st
  • 2016 All Africa Games, Botswana – 1st
  • 2016 Youth Olympic Games, Nanjing – 1st 
  • 2017 Athletics South Africa Championships – 1st
  • 2017 African Championships, Ethiopia – 1st
  • 2017 SA Senior Championships, Durban – 1st
  • 2017 Junior World Championships (PB time)

Give us a brief outline of your in-season training routine.

I train from Monday to Saturday. Monday, Wednesday and Friday are my hard sessions – I call them lactic sessions. We have a recovery session every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.

Give us a brief outline of your off-season training routine.

I train from Mondays to Saturday. This time my lactic sessions are on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. Recovery sessions are on Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

Are there big differences in your in- and off-season nutrition?

Nope, there’s not really a difference in my eating pattern. Cheating weekends remain cheating weekends. I personally think athletes just eat and train, but we try to eat healthily.

What advice would you give to a woman who wants to pursue a sport like yours?

When you want to become a professional athlete you need dedication, determination, perseverance, and desire, and then you will succeed. You’ve just got to work hard for what you want and stay focused, even when it gets tough.

What are your thoughts on female equality in your sport? Have you seen growth in participants over the past few years?

Yes, I see a growth in women’s athletics. We are getting there. More often I see young and upcoming athletes take a stand and make a name for themselves.

Is there something you wish you knew when you started?

I wish I knew how to better manage failure and emotional stress.

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Author: Tanja Schmitz

Founder and Editor of Fitness Magazine. You’ll find her behind her computer or on her bike, dreaming up new ways to improve or create content for you.