The joy of running and finishing the Eldoret City Marathon together with my wife today on the 22nd of April 2018

As I waited for my wife at the end of the finish chute where the officials had pushed me to, so that I would not cause more jam at the finish line, I had mixed feelings. I was almost certain that my wife would be furious and was definitely going to slap me or yell at me once she crossed the finish line since I had not believed in her when she had told me she was going to finish the marathon.  And so, as I stood there, I saw too members of the medical staff carrying her towards the first aid tent. She looked so weak and I thought it was safe for me to approach her. I approached them and patted her on the shoulder, asked how she felt and whether she was able to finish the race. She didn’t reply. Instead, she grabbed and held me tightly as she cried on my shoulder. The medical staff helped me take her to the tent where they placed her on the table, put some ice on her paining legs and did some more first aid on her before I led her away.

Winnie Chepkorir, 6th at the regional championships last year
About one and half years ago, my wife told me that she was interested in running as a hobby. This was great news to me. It meant that she would now at least understand everything about running and more importantly, why I would “waste my time” every day going for the runs. However, it was not possible for me to take her for my usual morning runs and I would go for my runs in the morning then take her later for about 30 minutes of jogging and walking. Her fastest pace was about 11 minutes per kilometer. But within a few months, she was able to run up to 14 – 15 kilometers nonstop and slowly started to incorporate speed and hill workouts. In her first race, which was 10km she finished it in 40 minutes. In no time at all, she was able to finish 6th at the central rift championships in the 5000m event,  run 17:30 to finish 11th at the Ziwa farmers 5km, then 37 minutes to finish 15th at the Rift Valley marathon, etc. This gave her a lot of motivation coming to the Eldoret city marathon with only one aim; “I want to know if it is possible for me to finish a marathon,” she had told me when the marathon was announced sometime last month, offering the perfect opportunity for her to try the distance. I was against the idea since I knew how brutal the marathon was, and especially to someone who had just started running. But, they say that When a child cries for a razor blade, give it to them and when they cut themselves they will understand that it is not good for them to play with it.

Regrets by a veteran runner of not visiting Kenya while he was a younger athlete and the huge difference he thinks would have made to his life:

Johan Derycke; runner and coach

As usual, many sports tourists, runners and agents who had come to train and remain active during the winter season are finally heading back to Europe and North America after spending their time here in Kenya. I was lucky to catch up with a 55 year old, Belgian runner in Eldoret recently, spoke with him and learned so much about running in Europe and why he thinks that a visit to Kenya can transform any runner’s life in many ways. For him, he wishes he had come to when he was a bit younger.
Derycke Johan visited Kenya for the first time last year, but within a year he was already back to gain more experience for his career as an a coach and a former runner who started running at the age of 21 years. He thinks that was quite late to start running. So far, his personal best times from track to the roads are; 1:52 for 800m, 3:50 for 1500m, 8:30 for 3000m, 14:27 for 5000m, 29:75 for 10K, 1:02:22 for 20K and 2:32 for the marathon.
His major regret is that he never made a decision to come and train in Kenya while at his competitive age.

Summary of Kenya’s performance at the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games

Kenya's gold medalists from the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games

Kenya finished 14th overall on the medal table and 5th on the athletics table at the just concluded Gold Coast Games with 4 gold, 7 silver and 6 bronze medals. All the medals except one bronze medal came from Athletics.
Compared with the last two editions of the Games where Kenya had placed 1st on the athletics medal table, this was a dismal performance. But, still this should not take any credit away from the amazing performances that the medalists exhibited there as they flew the Kenyan flag high. Special performances came from Wycliffe Kinyamal, winning

The Gold Coast Commonwealth Games' middle and long distance events time-table

The Gold Coast Commonwealth Games are approaching so fast. As a long distance runner and a fan of athletics in general, I can’t wait to watch the action live. I will probably be turning these days, from Sunday to Sunday as a week of relatively easy running as I do much of updates and previews throughout the week. I enjoy all running events, but I do believe I have more insights into distances from the 800m track events to the marathon. Look out for some of my stories on RunBlogRun
Every day, from the 8th to the 15th there will be at least one interesting final to be enjoyed by any middle/long distance athletics fan. Below is a simplified time-table of what to expect each day in the local Gold Coast times and Kenyan times in brackets.
8th April: - Finals:
                07:00 (00:00) Men’s 20km walk
                09:15 AM (02:15) Women’s 20km walk
                16:40 (09:40) Men 5000m finals (first track final)

A brief history of women marathon running by Stacy Chesnutt

It has been in a relatively short time that women have come from being strictly forbidden to run marathons, to becoming the largest number of entrants in USA and Canadian marathons.
Who does Stacy Chesnutt think is the greatest female marathon runner of all time? How fast does she think women can run the marathon?
In a very interesting speech at the Koitalel Samoei University College in Mosoriot, Nandi county of Kenya, Stacy Chesnutt, who is herself a 2:59:05 marathon runner, takes us briefly through the history of women marathon running, the great women marathon runners and why she thinks that the women’s marathon world record is very likely to fall at the London Marathon next month.
Stacy is passionate about encouraging as many females across the world to become runners. She is the founder of the Sole Sisters
Here is the sound clip from her speech:

My five reasons for being a sports fan and why it pays

Wilson Kiprop vs Bedan Karoki at a local cross country meeting in Eldoret, Kenya
It takes a very long time before a post that is not related to sports can pop up from any of my social media accounts. Most of my posts are related to sports, especially running, because that is where my heart is. Being a sports fan and a sports person has enriched my life in so many ways. In fact, I can’t tell whether I am a runner because I am a fan of running or a fan of running because I am a runner.
Below are some of the benefits of being a sports fan (that of being a sports person will be a topic for another day).
1. It is free!
There are so many ways to treat oneself; buying an expensive gift, going out to watch a movie, visiting a game park, making a special meal, among others.  For me, relaxing in the house and watching a track and field event, a cross country meeting or a road running event on TV; or going out to spectate at a local sporting event is all that I will need to have a great day. The fun part is that it is always free for me to do all these!

Valuable lessons on training for and running a marathon

I wrote this article for RunBlogRun at the beginning of 2017 and I still believe it applies to 2018.
If you are beginning to develope a new hobby of collecting marathon finishers' medals like me, then some of the lessons below, learnt through experience and through sharing with other athletes, may be valuable to you as you seek to meet your goals. You might also want to check my 17 Week Marathon Training Program that improved my marathon time by over 29 minutes!
On my way to winning the Sportinglife 10K

1. It is not necessarily the distances of the long runs you do that translate to running a good marathon, but the daily efforts you put in your training:
In 2016, I witnessed a friend who never did a long run of more than 30km the whole of the year and still managed to finish two local competitive marathons in Kenya by finishing 2nd and 7th and running a personal best time of 2:14:08.
The reason he could not do a longer run is because there was no vehicle to give him drinking water in his training, and so he decided to be doing two runs of 25km - 30km twice every week. He ran faster than other athletes who at times did up to 50km long runs.
2. Starting out a race too fast often results in running slower times in the end:
This is the one lesson that most runners often learn it the hard way. 42km is a long way and when you start it hard you will definitely find yourself hurting at 5km and wondering how and if you will ever end the remaining 37km!

Valuable lessons on training for and running a marathon

I wrote this article for RunBlogRun at the beginning of 2017 and I still believe it applies to 2018. If you are beginning to develope a n...