Thursday, 14 December 2017

My thoughts on Kenyan-born athletes seeking greener pastures in other countries

Running is a profession unlike any other. If a journalist, a doctor, a farmer, a lawyer or any other professional is free to look for greener pastures out of their countries, I do not see any good reason why runners should not have the same freedoms to move to a country where they believe their services will be more valuable and appreciated and settle there.
Kaan Ozbilen running in a past event
Over the weekend, Kenyans continued to show their supremacy in long distance running by winning a number of races around the world, including the Honolulu marathon where Brigid Kosgei and Lawrence Cherono defended both the men and women titles by setting new course records. There were some fans with some concerns though when two Turkish athletes, Kaan Kigen Ozbilen and Can Yasemin, won the men and women European cross country titles and their origins were traced back to Kenya. Some fans seem to be uncomfortable with the fact that athletes with an East African origin who have changed their citizenships and now represent other nations are winning races for their new nations. However, it is hard to pin-point the exact reason for the discomfort. Is it the fear that the East Africans are unbeatable? Is it the issue of unleveled playing field? Or, is it an issue with feelings?
Some runners have begun steering away from the notion that athletes with Kenyan origin have to be avoided in races for them to win and the results can be seen: USA's Shalane Flanagan just beat the women's marathon record holder, Mary Keitany to win the New York City Marathon; Galen Rupp beat the two times world champion, Abel Kirui to win the Chicago marathon while Sondre Moen of Norway beat Uganda's world champion, Stephen Kiprotich to win the Fukuoka marathon.

Thursday, 30 November 2017

Great Ethiopian Run and Standard Chartered Nairobi Marathon happened on the same day

Photo by the Nairobi Marathon
Two of the East African countries with the greatest long distance running talents in the world coincidentally held the biggest races in their countries today. Ethiopians ran the Great Ethiopian Run while Kenyans ran the Nairobi Marathon. No one planned for the two big races to happen on the same day, but the election timeline in Kenya forced the Nairobi Marathon to be postponed from the usual last Sunday of October to this day. The big races happening at the same time filled the social media with exciting pictures and results and the all day was almost all about running. If only we had races like these every weekend!
The Standard Chartered Nairobi Marathon in Kenya began in a chilly morning with some light showers, but then it was soon to get warmer in the last half of the race when the battle for the men's trophy was clearly among three athletes in the lead pack.

Wednesday, 29 November 2017

Training without a sponsor is hard, traveling to race is even harder!

Beginning on 3rd December 2017, I will be updating my weekly training on this page Follow my Training Here. My training will be made to suit my level of running and my individual goals, but I will be willing to provide an adjusted program and share ideas with those who would like to incorporate this training to suit their level, work schedules and their goals for next year too. You can email thekenyanathlete(at) if interested in a specialized program for yourself.
Running the Ottawa Marathon in 2017

Here is my plan for next year:
With personal best times of 29:48, 1:06:24 and 2:26:48 for the 10K, the half marathon and the full marathon, I am at a point in my Running career where I believe I am ever so close to making a bigger breakthrough that will finally get me a shoe/apparel sponsor, a better profile to get complimentary entries to big races, and get me closer to my life's goals of helping and inspiring others to work hard in their lives and meet their goals too.
To get there, I will first have to find the means to sponsor myself to some road races in the spring (March - May) to further improve on my times and to train well for these races.
Your support will not only shape my future, but the future of many young people who look up to me for help and inspiration for their future.
Kindly, click on the button below to donate towards my training and my travel expenses to race.

Friday, 24 November 2017

Why The Nairobi Marathon ought to be an IAAF label road race

Photo from Nairobi Marathon

Being arguably the biggest marathon in a country whose athletes dominate the whole world in long distance and road running, it is hard to understand why Nairobi marathon is not yet part of the biggest marathons in the world. It is further astonishing to learn that it is not even one of the IAAF label road races. Understandingly, it not where the race is staged that makes it a bronze, a silver, or a gold label race, but what the race organizers puts into it.