Kenya Trip 2013 – Week #8!

Posted: August 19, 2013 in Robert Brouillette

AUGUST 12th – AUGUST 18th, 2013

August 12

I woke up and had breakfast of boiled eggs, bread slices, and made a thermos of coffee for myself. Then I went to the 19K in 1:20 minute workout with my foot hurting but not enough to stop me. I started out with the lead elite men’s group for a few kilometers and did a lot better than I thought I would, before dropped back to a more comfortable pace with the sub-elite men’s group which I was in the front of for a while. Then finally I finished the remaining very hilly kilometers with the elite women’s group which consisted of a 2:27 marathoner. When the workout was over the sun came right out and it got hot so I headed straight home to refuel with some sport drinks by PowerBar. I had a few snacks of almonds, a banana, coconut biscuits, and some more bread slices. I took a motorbike to Hillside Hotel to watch the World Championships on TV and have lunch which was goat meat, mixed cabbage, ugali, chapati, and chai tea. I took another motorbike to Johana’s shop, Olympics Corner, to order some bead bracelets for myself, family, and friends, as well as pick out some decorations and accessories as gifts for people back in Canada. I missed another afternoon run just to give my foot as much time to heal as I can without missing the important workouts. I kept Mercy company at the shop and while she was beading she told me to “take a grass” since I was standing around outside which was funny. Johana and I after went to Keelu Resort to watch some World Championships while drinking chai tea before heading home late for supper of a potato and rice mix. It began to rain very heavily so I headed to bed and will wait to see how I feel for tomorrows run.

August 13

I woke up and lay in bed till 8:30AM before having breakfast of the everyday usual bread slices with peanut butter and honey with coffee to drink. I went into town with Johana to watch World Championships but none of the events we have interest in were on TV so we headed back home. My foot was feeling better but still sore so Johana gave me some fast pain relief rub cream to use and then a massage that made me feel amazingly better as these Kenyan’s really know what they are doing. We soon after went for an easy hour run with a camera to take pictures of each other along the way which was really cool. My foot didn’t bother me all that much throughout the run so things are looking good. For a late lunch, I treated Johana to an expensive fancy lunch at Kerio View restaurant where we had fish with pineapple and coconut sauces, ugali, chapati, both spinach and cabbage vegetable mix, and white coffee to drink while watching more World Championships on TV. I went back to Johana’s house to relax for an hour before going into town to watch the women’s pole vault, 3000M steeplechase, men’s 400M, and 800M. It was getting pretty late after we were done watching so we walked home in the dark to have a quick supper which was cups of porridge, some coconut cookies, and a banana. I headed to bed late but get to sleep in tomorrow for the run not till mid-morning.

August 14

I woke up at 8:30AM and had breakfast of porridge, bread slices, and coffee. I then went on a progressive 1 hour run with Johana and our friend Godfrey which started out very slow and really got fast at the end even with the big hills. Back at Johana’s place, lunch was just plain ugali with a cup of milk to drink, and then I went to Club Iten to have a cup of tea with a beautiful Kenyan girl named Madison who is very nice. After I headed to Olympics Corner to relax with Johana and Mercy where they were making bead bracelets and started preparing my special order ones. Supper was a delicious spaghetti noodle and potatoes with fresh avocado mixed in. The power went out so Johana and I lit some candles and just relaxed while talking about running, life, Kenya training, and him maybe coming to Canada to live with me this fall. Before heading to bed I decided that tomorrow’s workout would be my last chance and if my foot still hurt I will quit running for a week.

August 15

I woke up early at 7:00AM to prepare breakfast of bread slices with peanut butter and honey, and get ready for the fartlek workout that I would be going to by myself since Johana wanted to do a different workout. I met about 50 guys and some girls at the starting point before we went for a 30 minute easy run to the starting point of the real workout. They told me the fartlek was 2:1 for 50 minutes or so depending on pace. I started out with the front group like I always try to do but then my legs just felt like jelly so I dropped all the way back to 3rd last in all honesty. I managed to hang with them at this blistering fast speed by keeping a consistent pace but with just a few hundred meters to go my foot had finally had enough and I just stopped in frustration. The 1K walk of shame back home felt like an hour and I felt embarrassed, sad, and ever so angry, because I blame myself for whatever caused this injury. Even though I followed my 2 month training program perfectly, somewhere along the way I must have done too many kilometers, didn’t rest enough, my shoes were getting old, and not having access to ice when I wanted it didn’t help either. So I sat around on the couch for a few hours just relaxing, resting, putting my foot in a cold bucket, and elevating my foot, before I did some research on my computer. I discovered that my injury might be a metatarsal foot stress fracture. I am very sure this is the injury and it could have occurred from a number of things but the only treatment is not running for a few weeks and just sits around all day. This will be very difficult but I’ll do whatever it takes to make my foot better and make sure I am 100% ready for the fall cross-country season starting in September. Anyways, I went Keelu Resort with Johana in the evening like I normally do to watch IAAF World Championships on TV. I had some chai tea and enjoyed watching the track events to get my mind off of my foot pain and how this obstacle will affect my almost amazing summer training. I headed home and had some ugali again with egg/vegetable mix before heading straight to bed.

August 16

I woke up and had bread slices with my coffee for breakfast, before doing some cleaning around the house to keep my mind off missing my first Kenyan workout on purpose to rest my foot. I then got a call from a guy named Jonathan who has been in Iten, Kenya for just a few months and is a physiotherapist who went to University in Germany. He is a certified massage therapist so I was excited to hear him invite me over to his house to check out my foot and give me a massage. He was happy to see I was hearing my CEP compression socks to help with my recovery and keep the blood flowing in my legs. He had me lay down on the bed, did some tests with my foot to decide the location of the pain exactly, and then went straight into the massage. He did not hold back at all, giving me a legit deep massage right into the sorest parts of my muscles. My muscles were so tight due to all the training I’ve done and because massages in Canada aren’t too common with me unless I’m sore because they are so darn expensive. After he was finished showing me how tight my muscles were, and explaining to me that at least 1 massage a week will make my muscles so better, I now see the benefits. During the massage though, I felt like I was going to die, I was sweating like a mad man, and almost screaming in agony. However, once he was done I felt amazing and my foot much better. Massages in Kenya are very important and cheap too so I will definitely take advantage of those for my remaining 2 weeks here before heading back to Canada. I then took a motorbike into town to have lunch at Hillside Hotel where I had fried meat, ugali, shredded cabbage, chapati, samosa, ndazi, and chai tea to drink. Then took another motorbike to Olympics Corner where I hung out with the employees there as they were making bead bracelets including mine which I’m excited to see when they’re all done. I had some ndazi and chai tea with them before it began to rain so I had to rush to Keelu Resort to stay dry before the IAAF World Championship finals for the 5000M were on TV. Mo Farah of Great Britain won with the Kenyan’s just behind him so it was a good exciting race to watch and I’m really starting to be a fan of Mo Farah. Everyone in Iten says I look almost like him with my almost shaved head and beard. I was thankful to get a ride back home from one of the resort employees because it was very muddy and so dark outside. However, I was in my sandals for the 400 meter walk up the trail to the house which was a compete mud pit with no way around so my feet were covered in mud and I was even sinking into the ground at some points and getting stuck. Kenya when it rains is not a run place if you have to walk, run, or even drive for that matter because the mud simply sucks. Back at the house I made peanut butter and honey sandwiches with coffee since Johana was out-of-town for the night. I know I took the lazy route to supper but I really am not comfortable with cooking food as it is not one of my good skills. I headed to bed knowing I can sleep in till when ever I want with no workout plans for tomorrow either and will just have another easy day of recovery and good rest.

August 17

I woke up and had breakfast of bread slices and chai tea made all by myself. I met an American university runner from New York who invited me out for a run with his group but I had to sadly decline because I am still resting. I then went to Olympics Corner to hang outside in the beautiful weather and see the progress of my bead bracelets. I took a motorbike to Hillside Hotel for lunch which was beef stew, ugali, chapati, samosa, ndazi, and chai tea to drink. Took another bike to Keelu Resort to watch the IAAF World Championships for the 5000M race where Mo Farah won the gold just ahead of the Kenyan’s. It rained very heavy just as I got home so the mud was beginning to get too much again. We actually were not able to make supper because our tank was out of gas and all our ingredients had to be cooked so instead we just had some snacks of coconut cookies, PowerBar nutrition bars, and a fruit drink. I headed to bed very early as tomorrow will be an early morning.

August 18  

I woke up by 7:00AM and got ready with a quick cold water shower before church since Johana invited me to check it out. We had breakfast at the Country Star Hotel of two ndazi’s and chai tea to drink before walking to St. Patrick’s Church. The church was absolutely packed and of course I was the only white person inside but I found a seat with Johana and sat or stood there for an hour while they sang and talked in Swahili. I tried to be as respectful as I could but after an hour of not understanding anything anyone was saying or singing, I politely got up and went outside to wait for the service to end. Outside I took pictures of the children all dressed up nicely for church and relaxed under the sun. Once Johana came out of the church after 2 hour, we went to our favorite Hillside Hotel for lunch where we had mbuzi (goat meat), ugali, and shredded cabbage. Then we went to our other favorite spot at the Keelu Resort, where we watched the IAAF World Championships for men’s 1500M, women’s 800M, and then finally both 4x100M finals. Canada took the men’s 4x100M bronze medal due to Britain getting disqualified so I am happy to see Canada’s 5th medal to end the World Championships. I helped Johana make supper which was a rice, potato, and spaghetti noodle mix before staying up till midnight on my laptop before falling asleep. Today makes 3 days without running at all to rest my body and make my foot feel better.

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Me with maasai spear and shield in front of Olympics Corner shop!

Me with a Maasai spear and shield in front of Johana’s Olympics Corner shop!

Wearing my Canada shirt while the IAAF World Championships are going on in Moscow!

Representing my country with a Canada running shirt in Kenya while the IAAF World Championships are on!

Johana and I had this beautiful view during a meal at the Kerio View Restaurant in Iten!

Johana and I had this beautiful view during a meal at the Kerio View Restaurant in Iten!

– Robert Brouillette


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