Kenya Running Trip: Week #3!

Posted: January 19, 2015 in Robert Brouillette

      3-8-kenya

December 30th to March 26th 2015, I will be living in Iten, Kenya for my high altitude training running hitting up to 160K, enjoying the Kenyan culture lifestyle, eating delicious fresh healthy home-made meals, and visiting around Rift Valley to discover new things. I’m super excited to see what I can make out of this 13 week journey as I prepare for Hamilton’s Around The Bay 5K and then Toronto’s Yonge Street 10K road races this spring back home in Canada! 🙂

January 12 – 18, 2015

With last week being my biggest ever for most kilometres, time, and elevation gain, I had to make this week a little easier so the mileage is down but still respectable with four specific type workouts, two moderate and a few easy runs. The training went a little something like this: Monday morning was hill work so the group took me to a forest where I found myself not at the bottom of any regular hill but I want to call it a mountain. It was very steep and I would than endure my toughest running workout of my life. It was 300M for the big set and 200M for the small one so I did the big one with the guys 6 times before my body could not keep from almost falling over from exhaustion then I switched to the small one for 3 sets to finish off the workout absolutely tired that my legs didn’t want to turn over anymore. For the run back home they threw in some 30 second fartlek but my legs were done by that point so I did a few and jogged the rest in easy. Tuesday morning was a longer fartlek workout of 6:6 x4 with my group and 800M focused group so I was in store for some quick teammates. Since the sets were longer then a usual fartlek of one, two, or three-minute intervals, it was more of a progressive tempo effort that I believe I averaged around 3:40’s give or take a couple of seconds. I started to feel the effects of my increased training volume so my reps weren’t as fast as I would have liked but I got them all in and had a nice long cool down back home. Now that I got my big mileage week out-of-the-way last week, I really need to start focusing on my speed for my upcoming 5K and 10K races and not so much endurance. In order words, quality over quantity. It’s great to get every set, rep, and kilometer I’m told finished, but if they are not at race pace speeds I’m really not achieving what I need now.

Wednesday was an easy recovery day with 1 hour in the morning and 40 minutes in the evening with friends. Thursday was a great day as Jackson took me to the Eldoret track to meet his brother and friends for a track workout. The leader said 400M x25 and that’s it, the rest I figured out as the workout went on. I ran the first few sets with the big group before settling into my pace for the rest. I hit between 1:13-1:21 for 400M x21 with my first and last set being 1:16. Even though I didn’t hit 25 sets, it wasn’t because I was tired or getting slow, it was simply because ever other athlete dropped out at around 13 or 14 laps and I ended up doing the most out of everyone. However, it’s fair to say they were running their reps faster than me so I had more in my system to get more of them done at a slower pace than them. In the end I am very happy with this workout and I even hit a new PB on my watch of 15:50 minutes for 5K (obviously not in a straight out 5K but broken up into 400M but the effort was still there). This is the pace I want if not I can do even faster for my debut race back in Canada for Around The Bay 5K in Hamilton on March 29th to get my new PB (now at 16:02 from Guelph’s Billy Taylor 5K back in late April 2014).

Friday I joined the 6:15AM group of 50ish for a moderate run but held back from the lead group and sat comfortably in the back keeping a consistent pace. Last week when I hit “the hill” it destroyed me but this week I didn’t even realize I ran the hill till I was already finished climbing it. I didn’t fear it, ran up it conservatively, and still felt amazing cresting the top before tagging onto someone to bring me home for 15.7K. Saturday morning was the long run with Mizael and Arthur from Chicago, USA, and they had 30K planned with 30K moderate and picking it up in the end. I hung with them for 17K before needing a pit stop that caused me to lose them but that’s the price you got to pay in these situations. Thankfully I knew my way home this time since this is the same route I got lost on last week. I had 25K planned with me getting down to the sub 4:00/K pace before my stomach hit me hard with some pains causing me to stop around half-marathon. I tried to start back up again but it was not working so I decided to allow my body to rest and would just walk back home since I got almost 23K in 100 minutes on my feet done anyways. The walk would be at least 5K and I feel like it was a good solid hour in the hot sun but it gave me some time to think, enjoy the view, beautiful weather, and watch other athletes run by working hard. Sunday I followed the Kenyan way and took the day completely off to rest my body for new week.

Outside of running training, I took my first matatu (bus ride) in a little van with a crazy driver and double the passengers to seats for a packed full drive from Iten to Eldoret. There was a thief that hit up some of the houses in my plaza, and sadly they got me of some money and a few other little things, but in the end I’m safe and they didn’t get away with anything too valuable or which can not be replaced. I am now more careful with my things and have a new lock on my door to increase security for my personal room. This week I saw famous Kenyan runners: David Rudisha (Olympian, 800M world record holder), Wilson Kipsang (Olympian, former marathon world record holder, now third fastest ever), Alice Aprot (world junior XC), Asbel Kiprop (Olympian 1500M), Sally Kipyego (living in USA, training in Kenya, she ran some top 5 times in the world this year), Moses Masaii (professional track runner), and so on. Not to mention all the successful international athletes that is training here for some weeks/months the same way as me.

After my long run on Saturday I quickly headed over to the field in Iten town to watch the cross-country races for junior and senior, men and women, races of 8K and 12K on a 2K loop. The whole course could be seen from where I was watching and my friends Edwin ran junior men 8K race (hitting 6K in 22 minutes) and friend Alison ran senior women 8K where she was leading for the first bit before finishing a strong 2nd overall. The senior men 12K (6 laps) was exciting with a big competitive field to start and slowly shrunk as people dropped out as the race progressed. I heard that a 2nd place Boston Marathon finisher (possibly behind Wesley Korir in 2010) was one of the top guys at this race. It’s a good thing I didn’t enter this event or I would have been so embarrassed being shot out the back-end with the community out at the field to support their Kenyan athletes. Next week I do plan on running Discovery Kenya cross-country like I did last year but not sure if I’ll be in the junior 8K or senior 10K. Then the following week after that is Discovery Kenya Half-Marathon on the road that I will not being racing this year. But I have ideas to do some chunk of the race (maybe 5K or 10K of this HM) just to get some speed in my legs, plus I haven’t ran on a road in 3 weeks now so it would be nice.

To end the week, a few of us mzungu’s (white dudes) took a matatu (taxi) to Eldoret to spoil ourselves at an Indian Restaurant called Sunjeel Palace where I had something called chicken korma with a fancy Indian bread, and a big glass of mango juice then over to a Pizza place for ice-cold milkshakes. Before we left town to head back to Iten we saw David Rudisha (who I mentioned as well above as a famous Kenyan runner) as well as Wesley Korir (2010 Boston Marathon champion and now a political Kenya MP) who’s Canadian race I won back in September for the Wellesley Harvest Half-Marathon in the Waterloo Running Series.

Running Training

Monday
AM = 9.9K/ 1:27:10/ hill reps (300M x6 + 200M x3)
PM = 7.7K/ 46:30/ easy
Total: 20.7K in 2 hours 13 minutes

Tuesday
AM = 16.6K/ 1:30:06/ fartlek 6:6 x4
Total: 16.6K in 1:30:06

Wednesday
AM = 12.3K/ 1:00:08/ easy progression
PM = 6.3K/ 30:48/ easy
Total: 18.6K in 1 hour 30 minutes

Thursday
AM = 8.7K/ 27:55/ track (400M x21)
PM = 10.6K/ 1:00:06/ easy
Total: 19.3K in 1 hour 21 minutes

Friday
AM = 15.7K/ 1:09:12/ moderate
Total: 15.7K in 1 hour 9 minutes

Saturday
AM = 22.7K/ 1:41:40/ moderate long run
Total: 22.7K in 1 hour 41 minutes

Sunday:
Rest day

Week’s Distance & Time = 113.6K in 9 hours 33 minutes!

I’m here to focus on running of course but walking is also very beneficial to my fitness as time on my feet and trust me I do a lot of it.

You can find a complete list of all my GPS detailed runs from Canada and Kenya on my STRAVA profile here:
http://www.strava.com/athletes/4446950

                  

Thank you for reading my Kenya adventures, keep on running, and I’ll be back with another update next week. Until then I’ll be posting daily at http://www.facebook.com/RunnerRob4Life & http://www.twitter.com/RunnerRob4Life.

I’m still getting the hang out this blogging thing so if you have any feedback or would like to see something in the next installment of Runner Rob’s “Kenya Running Trip,” just feel free to give me a shout.

#TYS10K #CantWontStop #ENDURrob #TrainHardWinEasy #MenAtWork #CanadianMzungu #YoungWildFree #KenyanWay #MakeExcellentHappen #ItsPossible #Runday #RunForLife #1Sport1Love #LongMayWeRun #HeavyInTheGame #RiseAndGrind #TheShoeMustGoOn #ItsPossible #ThisIsMyDay

Robert Brouillette 😀

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