John Lotiang offers free accommadation to fellow runners in Iten, Kenya

John Lotiang (left) with fellow runners in Iten. Photo from Lotiang's FB post.
John Lotiang is determined to help his fellow runners in Iten during these hard times. He has been forced to move out of his own house into a smaller one in a corner of his own compound, by his own big heart, in order to provide free accommodation for them. 

“If no one had helped me, I would not be where I am today. That is what has made me decide to give out all my rental units, and my house as well, to runners in Iten for free until such a time when they will find other means to earn a living, or when everything returns to normal again,” Lotiang, a reformed Pokot warrior who left cattle rustling a few years ago to pursue running told RunBlogRun at his training place in Iten.


Through the Tegla Loroupe Peace Foundation initiative that was founded by the legendary runner and peace icon, Tegla Loroupe, Lotiang and a few other young warriors from the Pokot community were identified and provided with everything they needed – food, shelter and clothing- to begin their careers in running. He has been quite successful so far and knows what a big difference a little help can make to someone’s life.


Eliud Kipchoge is one of the panelists at this week's NOCK webinar

I have been following online webinars live on FaceBook that have been organized by the National Olympic committee of Kenya (NOCK) to educate athletes on different fields of their careers.

NOCK has been bringing in different experts to enlighten athletes. The first two topics have been on finance management and on building a personal image that the local brands would wish to work with. This week on 11th of June, Eliud Kipchoge, the greatest marathon runner of all time, will be one of the panelists.

One of the experts to have been invited to talk to athletes was Shaba Njagi, a financial expert. She gave valuable advice to athletes on how to secure their financial future.

She addressed the dangers of a “false well-being” that most athletes often get into when they win money from some big competitions. Such false well-being may drive the athletes to ask for some salary advance or request for loans that would put them in a circle of debts.

How Virtual runs work

Winnie Kosgey participating in the Ottawa 10K virtual run
Virtual runs are running competitions that are organized by race organizers in their own countries, but runners everywhere in the world are able to participate in them without having to travel there. A runner can just find an ideal route for themselves, measure and run the race distance and then submit the results electronically to the race organizers.

2.       What equipment do athletes need?

Runners will need to have a GPS enabled sports watch, or even a smart phone. They should be able to synch their race results after their run to a running App, like Strava, Garmin Connect, among others, and it will be easier to transfer them to the race organizers from there.

3.       How do low altitude areas work different from high altitudes?

At the moment, there are no measures in place to ensure a level playing field for runners running at higher altitude against those running at a lower altitude. So, it remains a challenge. But, who knows? The others at the lower altitudes could also be complaining that they do not get chances to travel and train at high altitudes!

Another challenge here will be the route elevation as well. Some runners may be running on flat courses while others may be running uphill or downhill.