Kenya Running Trip: Week #7!

Posted: February 16, 2015 in Robert Brouillette


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! 🙂

February 9th – 15th, 2015

This week of high altitude running was pretty low-key with just 2 workouts and the rest just easy runs due to this stomach bug I’ve fought on and off throughout the trip but really hit me hard this week. I’ve really got to be careful of what I eat and drink in this town because sanitation at some of these hotels (restaurants) are not the best and it’s hard to tell by just looking at the food to know if something is wrong. So this whole week of training was basically 50/50 for me to whether I would wake up with a stomach ache or not. Regardless I still got 124K and almost 10 hours of activity in so I’ll just consider this a recovery week of running so I can start next week feeling strong, healthy, and ready to tackle all runs with no excuses. But for now here is how the workouts went this week not including all the slow, uneventful, easy runs while I was still under the weather.

Tuesday I went to Kamariny dirt track to do 800 meter repeats off of 200M active recovery jog but due to the track being long and me not always being able to hug the inside lane due to faster Kenyans coming up on me from behind, it ended up being closer to 820 meters for two laps. I averaged between 2:45-2:49 for my sets that I ran solo since I don’t have a pacer or a training partner at my speed. I did 12 of them all around half-marathon pace and I felt like I could keep going forever at sub 2:50 but I really need to learn how to dig deep and focus more on less reps at faster speed and not more reps at an average speed for endurance. I know I’m naturally a marathoner type runner but I am really trying to focus on my 5K/10K fitness now so I need to be mentally strong for this to happen. As I was leaving the track I saw Abel Kirui, who was the 2012 London Olympics silver medalist in the men’s marathon, so that’s always pretty cool and I can add him to the now long list of famous runners I’ve seen out here. Wednesday was 19K in sub 1:30 with Johana and Friday was 16.2K with the “Lilies group,” both easy progression runs not quite reaching moderate pace due to my body feeling rough. For one of my easy runs I did cross paths with Paula Radcliffe of UK a few times, who is the women’s marathon world record holder.

Thursday I actually had myself a pretty wicked workout which was a fartlek of 1:2 (1 minute easy, 2 minutes hard) for 17 sets totaling 51 minutes. We started out with a decent size group but as the workout went on, guys kept dropping out making it harder for me to find someone to run with or chase down. The net downhill start and uphill into the wind finish always makes things a little tougher. When I finished the workout and began my cool down, some guys from behind caught up to me to jog back to town, telling me how they are 2:28-2:30 marathoners so that’s always a good thing for me to hear knowing I finished the workout ahead of them. Saturday was a planned 25K most or 1 hour 40 minutes hard effort, but after just 1K into the long run I had to bail because of all the pressure in my stomach. That’s when I decided I would take all of Saturday and Sunday off to rest and start the new week off refreshed with this diet problem behind me.

Outside of running I tried a guava (mapera) for the first time which is a little round fruit with a yellow peel that I was told I could bite into but I wish I didn’t, had little hard seeds inside that you can’t chew so have to keep spitting out, and barely any pink fruit inside which didn’t have any taste anyways, so not an overly enjoyable snack. The propane tank at the house ran out of gas so being the man who I am I wanted to be tough so I carried the tank over my shoulder for a mile to the nearest gas station. When I got there all tired, sore and covered in grease, they tell me that they ran out of propane which is odd considering that is a key item of a gas station. I ended up hitch hiking until I got a ride on the back of a motorcycle holding onto this tank to another gas station. You would never see this happening back home but in Kenya it’s very normal to find people taking motor bike rides with all sorts of unusual things with them. With all the dust on the trails due to the ground being so dry and then a stampede of runners ahead of you kicking it all up into the air, it’s hard not to breathe some of that dirt into your lungs which can give you a bad cough.

To end the week off, Alex surprised me with homemade pancakes and chai tea for breakfast which was a nice change and they sure were delicious. Coincidentally, back home the Waterloo Running Series just announced that they came out with a new event on March 28th called the Pancake Mile which is like the beer mile. But for those who don’t know how it works, well it goes a little something like this: eat a pancake, run a lap of the track, and repeat 4 times. It sounds easy until you are actually out there running a hard 400 meters with pancakes in your stomach. The winner will officially have the pancake mile Guinness world record which is awesome because not everyone can say they achieved a record like that in their lifetime. The problem is that it’s the day before my first race back from Kenya at Hamilton’s Around The Bay (Bay And Back) 5K road race which I need to be 100% ready for to show all this training has really paid off.

Running Training

AM = rest/ off
PM = 10.4K/ 48:42/ easy
Total: 10.4K in 48 minutes

AM = 13.5K/ 54:08/ track 820M x12 with 200M recovery + strides x8
(2:46, 2:46, 2:46, 2:46, 2:47, 2:48, 2:48, 2:49, 2:49, 2:49, 2:48, 2:45)
3.6K/ 22:54/ warm up & 2.2K/ 14:34/ cool down
PM = 8.1K/ 45:02/ easy
Total: 27.4K in 2 hours 16 minutes

AM = 19K/ 1:28:15/ easy progression
PM = 10.3K/ 50:35/ easy
Total: 29.3K in 2 hours 18 minutes

AM = 12.5K/ 51:00/ fartlek 1:2 x 17 (easy: hard)
6.1K/ 27:10/ warm up & 2.4K/ 13:08/ cool down
PM = 10.3K/ 50:02/ easy
Total: 31.3K in 2 hours 21 minutes

AM = 16.2K/ 1:11:47/ easy to moderate
PM = 8.6K/ 42:48/ easy + strides x6
Total: 24.8K in 1 hour 54 minutes

rest/ off

rest/ off

Week’s Distance & Time: 124.7K in 9 hours 50 minutes!

You can find a complete list of all my GPS detailed runs from Canada and Kenya on my STRAVA profile here:


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 &

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. I’m having fun keeping myself busy with these weekly recaps.

#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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