Will Asbel Kiprop get banned, or not?

Asbel Kiprop training in Iten
Asbel Kiprop’s samples were allegedly collected in November 2017. One year and two months later, he has not been able to participate in any competitions and is yet to know whether he is going to be banned or not. I have no idea why it is taking such a long time for him to be either banned or set free, but I know this.

When I started my anti-doping awareness campaigns some time back in 2013, I remember Asbel Kiprop was among the first people to support me. He did purchase a number of T-shirts with a slogan urging athletes to run clean that I helped distribute to a number of athletes. I know of some of the athletes who saw the need to shun doping completely out of my small efforts.




Interview with Justin Lagat, the Running Author

Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in the rural areas in the Rift Valley region in Kenya. My primary school was about four kilometers away and I, with my siblings, would run to and fro four times in a day. This made me like running. However, in a land where everyone is born into the same life situations, it was hard to make a great impression as an exceptional runner. I would win in some low profile competitions, but could not proceed due to the abundant talents around. However, my interest in running began there.
Writing came out of my creative nature, and the two passions; running and writing have resulted in my books.

When did you first start writing?
In Primary school's creative writing tests. That's from around 1994.



What motivated you to become an indie author?
I think I was born a writer.

How I improved my marathon time by 29 minutes

winning a 10K race in Ottawa, Canada
Running and completing a marathon is one of the hardest undertakings that any runner can undertake. Cutting 29 minutes off a marathon time is even harder. It needs well thought and lengthy preparations.

The training program should be made to incorporate track and road speed workouts, hills, long runs, tempo runs, enough sleep, among others.

The best ever cross country race that I ever witnessed in my life.

Wilson Kiprop after winning the Nike Discovery Kenya Cross Country event
If there is one thing that I am thankful for having been born in the 21st century, it is that I got the chance to witness a race like no other and one that will be hard to ever be replicated in the next 100 years. I have met a number of fans who watched it, and they all agree with me that there has never been another race like that.




It is now five years later and I am still wondering if I will ever get another chance to watch a race even half as amazing 
as the 2014 Nike Discovery cross country. I always feel my hair rise whenever I recall the battle that had been witnessed and how the crowds had ran around the field seeming to have all gone completely mad. The senior men's race at the Eldoret sports club was …. let’s just use the word amazing, for lack of a better word.

Eliud Kipchoge does not need New Year resolutions

Eliud Kipchoge with his life and running coach, Patrick Sang 
Try hard and just imagine for a moment winning one of the major marathons in the world. I know it is already hard to imagine winning a local 5K race in your town, but just give it a shot. Imagine repeating that again in yet another major marathon within the same year. Imagine you shattered the world record by over a minute in your next marathon. And, if you still have some more energy to imagine, continue and imagine being named as the IAAF’s best athlete of the year.

An interview with one of the leading athletic managers in Kenya on the future of running

Nicholas Bor leading the men's Ottawa 10K race
A conversation I had with one athletics manager dealing with the long and middle distance runners kept me thinking about the need for stake holders in the sport of running to invest in different ways to attract more fans into the sport. We need more running related TV and Radio shows, magazines, more races coming up, more marketing of athletes, more coaching on public relation skills to top runners, and many more other ways.

Different ways in which Kenyan athletes do their long runs

Justin Lagat training in Eldoret, Kenya
Not all Kenyan athletes have vehicles to use in their long runs, but they still find ways to do it. Below are four typical ways in which most of the Kenyan athletes do their long runs. Where there is a will; there is always a way. 

Running is also a business venture with great potential

Athletes running at the Nike Discovery Kenya Cross Country championships in Eldoret
Many people claim to be running “just” as a hobby. No problem with that. But, to be honest, running is quickly transforming itself into another form of a business venture with great potential. Times are quickly changing. Even water used to be free a few years ago, but time has come when companies have seized the opportunity to bottle and brand the resource and it is now turning into another lucrative business venture as well. Even soil is being packaged and sold in supermarkets these days!

There are so many companies that are getting into the health and fitness industry in the recent years. Be it sport tourism training camps and destinations (like Iten, Kenya), medical facilities, gym facilities, nutritional products, running shoes, online coaching and even sites that get money out of sports, for example review ug worldstar, among others. In fact, other companies that are not even related directly with the sport of running are getting into partnerships with athletes in order for them to market their brands.

Kenyan athlete's experience running road races in Canada

Receiving awards after finishing 1st at the SportingLife Ottawa 10K
This was my experience last year when I went out to run some road races and train in Canada for a month. It was a very fulfilling and insightful experience in many ways.

Long distance training in Kenya often happens in rain, mud and dust

Kenyan athletes from the Kimumu Group in Eldoret after their training
There are many great stories that come out from running and training in Kenya. Be it getting lost in the forest, being taken on a longer route than you had planned and ending up stopping and asking for help, starting out on a very tough workout with a group then looking at each other understandingly in the middle of it and quiting at the same time, dancing in the early hours of the morning in an attempt to keep warm as you wait on other runners to arrive before you could start a long run, among others.

Three weeks to a marathon; is it better to be overtrained or undertrained?

Mark Lokwanamoi running in the rain one week before finishing 2nd at the 2016 Nairobi Marathon
The last few weeks to a marathon race are the most confusing and difficult ones to deal with for many runners. You stop training; you gain weight. You continue training; you feel exhausted on race day. A successful race day depends more on how one balances their training at this stage in order to be in their best form at the right time.

American Runner made seven surprising discoveries about Kenyan athletes while in Kenya

Paul Duffau with a group of Kenyan athletes in Kaptagat
Being a runner for many years and having worked as a freelance journalist covering the same topic, I have gotten fans across the world that enjoy and follow my articles on the running related stories I share from Kenya. One of the fans is Paul Duffau, a home inspector and author from Asotin, WA, who made me exceedingly happy in 2015 after taking the initiative of coming over to Kenya and experiencing the culture of running for himself. Paul is famously known for his two running related novels; The Finishing Kick and Trail of Second Chances. 

Here is what he found out as he explored Kenya and met with a number of Kenyan athletes: