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01/24 Dinner last night with Fred Lebow's sister - the founder and the visionary of the New York City Marathon. A very nice lady with a lot of stories.
First we had Kimani Maruge, 84, as the world's oldest primary school boy, schooling in Langas, Eldoret... and now we have Priscilla Sitenei, of Ndalat, Eldoret at 90-years old! The story [LINK]
01/23 Saw the results of an 'unknown' win the Dubai Marathon... I think the sport needs an overhaul. A league system that to get into the prize money draw you must be a known athlete owning a biological passport (think Premier League for running). Each athlete's blood results are posted on the respective Athlete's manager's site. If that athlete is tested by WADA at any time and those results don't match then the management gets a suspension/fine. It is not infalliable but it is a start.
Maybe it is the time for Shoe Companies to start funding 'testing stations'?
I hear that one management team has bought such equipment to try and clamp down on what is a growing problem. I had an enlightening talk once with a man who told the various ways that the cheats are getting away with it - he also pointed out various top athletes, performances etc, and ways of showing the traits. All the athletes he fingered are now coming to light as having reports of crazy levels that were noted but nothing done thus they 'ran free'. In fact the IAAF has a list of athletes who probably will never come to light that are uber famous and made their wealth through running yet did it the unfair way. One could say should the IAAF release the list anyway? The current POA is obviously failing. Today we hear the lists of people being watched are mind boggling, yet again, we wonder, what is going to be done?
01/22 Mark your calendars: two important running races. H&P Achilles race in Central Park June 28th helping the disabled community and empowering the lives of those who really need it...And, a Thursday night social run 5k in Riverside - the Shoe4Africa 5k to help African kids get basic healthcare!Tomorrow, or tonight in the USA, Dubai is running - running fast I am sure at least at the front end with one of the world's speediest marathons.
01/21 Boston Marathon has the hardest job - how to compete with London. One wonders what could their strategy be to do such a thing? Well this year and every year it does not happen. But in all fairness no marathon, even including the championships like Worlds and Olympics, can match London. The Field LINK
01/20 I was in Urban Athletics chatting with Chubby. He was saying that he might to go for a school reunion. A friend of mine called Becky Lyne sent me an email, "Do you know this runner? He used to run for Hallamshire Harriers?"
Well I used to run for the club as well for a year and a half and I did know the man - Magnus Walker, although he was in an older age group to me.
Well she sent me a TED talks link. It seems he collects Porche 911's nowadays and how he has changed! I would have never recognized him.
I always wonder how people can talk for close to 20-minutes and Magnus seems to have perfect timing! He is now in a film called Urban Outlaw.
01/19 Now I am not one really to complain... but I was reading the cover of the Bloomberg magazine. There was an article I wanted to read on page 40 that was announced on the cover. When I flipped through the magazine none of the pages had any numbers on them!
On that subject we have so many pin codes, passwords, usernames to remember then why on earth is the "secret" code on the back of the credit card visible to all waiters who take your card? I mean why not make it one more thing to remember, I mean the same as the secret pin you use when you put the card in the ATM...?Solving the world's problems one by one.
01/18 Random thoughts -- My brother has adopted my sister's dog. It's a London dog and my brother lives in the country. I heard that he chases sheep now. Well thank goodness he is not visiting Fluffy. There might be a family argument.
Other random thoughts, in my NYC apartment; I am paying for heat... where is it?
Other thoughts... I hope one day to learn to iron a shirt... that is as far as my ambition stretches. Now, back to Fluffy, did I mention he's a Merino?
01/17/2015 My new acquisition - Fluffy the Wonder Sheep! thanks to Robert (pictured) My Fluffy now has a custom built home!
Fluffy the Wonder Sheep, at home in Kenya.
New York City is officially too cold. I think the first settlers must have arrived in September. God knows how this city became the Western World's top city. Same as Runner's World rating Stockholm the #1 running city - all I can say is timing is everthing.
I kicked off the New Year running - in fact after a desolate December, just two runs for the month, January has been a cracker with 11-runs. (I can only count as I ran the first ten days in a row). Central Park is frozen solid, the only goodness being it reallyhelps to jump start you back into running at pace - jogging slow is not an option.
In fact I was thinking about popping into a race but I happened to stumble on perhaps the only weekend in the year that does not have a race in the park!~
Saw my friend Tony yesterday, he has a huge beard. He's got a role in a play where the beard is needed. Must be a seasonal play... and indeed a Russian one.
Coping with Jetlag - never is easy heading West but thanks to British Airways I did arrive feeling rested as least.
ShoesNews- Thanks to Cesar Mendez from Barclays sending shoes and these will be great to restock our supply
That was vastly depleted on december 24th at the annual Shoe4Africa race. I was just cropping 87 pictures and reducing the image size so they did not take a million years to load and some of my favourite pictures are the smiles on the ladies/girls faces as they pick up their pair at our largest yearly hand out. Of course shoes go out all the year but December 24th is always a special day.
I must say thanks to all the HATC guests who end up being great volunteers for me as well,adn the local athletes who patiently help -- each year Sylvia & Hilda Kibet and Viola Kibiwott spend hours handing out the shoes which is quite the job... So when Cesar's parcels arrive and I unpack them into the sacks I will be again focused on december 24th, and our tenth anniversay race - 2015! Ouch, don't let me think that far ahead!
01/13 Martin & Kip Keino on the flight from Eldoret to Nairobi. Is Kip Eldoret's most famous resident?New blood testing regulations to be introduced into Kenya - looks good. A step in the right direction. Hearing of other great ideas too.A little puppy was found, barely a few days old. Who could have dumped him? He's now been adopted and named... toby. He is half the size of a football and likes to sit in the shade.No Mo (Farah) in Kenya - he's gone to train in Ethiopia. Of course he is missed.
01/08 London, does it again, 2015 - Mr 2:02 Dennis Kimetto (Kenya) heads the line up with Wilson Kipsang (Kenya) 2:03:23 Emmanuel Mutai (Kenya) 2:03:13 Eliud Kipchoge (Kenya) 2:04:05 Ayele Abshero (Ethiopia) 2:04:23 Sammy Kitwara (Kenya) 2:04:28 Tsegaye Mekonnen (Ethiopia) 2:04:32 Stanley Biwott (Kenya) 2:04:55 Kenenisa Bekele (Ethiopia) 2:05:04 - are all set for the show featuring JUST East Africans, a sign of the times. Odd Bekele is inthe line up for Dubai later this month - I wonder if that is now a 'warm up' - kind've odd.
In Iten Elvan Abyeleg (forgot the rest) is here training... she who used to give Tirunesh a chase for the medals. She is here with a bunch of Turkish runners.
01/07 LE blog: Today I am sitting at the Moi Referral Hospital checking the finances. This morning I was up at 6 am and went out for a run, and ran for a bit with Abel Kirui the two time world champ who is in training for Boston. Breakfast at 7:30 talked to the camp coach, Timo about some office issues, then I was off to meet an athlete who needs some running shoes (so I had to sort through a few sacks of shoes to find the right size).
I then drove 35km to Eldoret town, through the town to Wareng School where I met with the school headmaster to visit his bakery - they are becoming a self sustaining school. Next up I dropped by admissions to pay the school fees for Lillian Wamboi. After finding the Bursary, checking the amounts, I got the receipt then met with the school girl who told me of her issues and the last year.
Then I rushed to the bank as I had ran out of cash. Exchanged some dollars and drove on the Uganda road to find a car mechanics place recommended by Moses Kiptanui. I dropped the car off for its 5000 km service, pointing out a few issues that need to be done, like a plug that has dropped off, a bull bar than has vibrated loose and a window that is stuck and I hope they discover a back light that needs exchanging. Amongst a few other things.
I was now 4km from town, so I had to walk back as I needed to print out a letter for the Doctor in charge. It is right at the heat of the summer here and I can feel my skin burning. I wish I had brought a hat. It is now lunch time (don't need to eat lunch), so I am finding some free time to type... and call my friend Haron, to ask about a Sheep! This is a morning on the job with Shoe4Africa -- I can't say it is a typical morning as every day is different. Now I am ready for the afternoon.
01/05 Help needed building a children's playground - anyone interested?
The Cabinet Secretary for Finance (the minister of finance) came on his second visit to the children's hospital yesterday. LINK with a commitment to help with equipping - we have a bill of $2.5 Million USD for this stage as we come to the close of the construction (now at 90%).
Discarded clothes at the start line of the tcs NYC marathon? "An incredible 207,000 pounds of discarded clothing was collected from the start of the 2014 TCS New York City Marathon and donated to Goodwill." 01/02/15 2015--Looking to overhaul Shoe4africa. Needing to step up to reach the potential that I know we have. New Year's resolution.December was a month in Kenya with dire to no Internet connection. Highlights were opening a school, seeing hospital progress, the 9th Shoe4Africa Iten race and more.
Thnaks to the staff members at HATC and all the guests (almost) who came out to help at the race - it was a great success. Also with the Police and the DC who partnered with the race to make sure it ran smoothly. Nice story - Viola Kibiwott ran as a pace maker for Ivy Kibet, then dropped back to "not" collect the prize money from the up and comers.
Next year is the tenth anniversary and we will do something special... watch this space.
2015 is here, who would have guessed it? Hoping for a great exciting year!12/05 The Doping scandal - it is now Russia against the world, and with some Russians now pole vaulting the fence to talk the talk - who do you believe? [article]
My speed through the supermarket was severely slowed this morning by the guy in front asking for 500 - apples. It did give a good chance to survey the basket cart of the person next in line. I was most surprised to then hear, after the 500 apples incident that took quite some time to sort out, that the next customer was on food stamps. I am definitely in America, not in Africa. I was wishing I could exchange baskets!The IAAF battle, Coe Vs Bubka will start next week to heat up as the candidates start talking about objectives. The favorite seems to be Coe but with politics you can never be sure.And talking the IAAF Priscah Jeptoo announces she wants to run the IAAF world's next year, as does defending champ Edna Kiplagat - the winner should be an obvious choice for the Kenyan Olympic team of 2016.
Priscah had the great comeback after a long injury time out setting a CR at the seven hills 15k where a ton of fast people have run proving she is back in the form that took her to a London & NYC title in 2013.
12/03 wowow - my friend the Russian Rocket has come into the news - The Shobo case. Let's hope this all gets cleared up. Personally I support longer bans, that is my two cents. And for a two time offender it should be a lifetime ban - that includes unpublicized tests that we know very much exist!My friend Jim sent me an interesting paper on the theory of... "The elite Kenyan athletes have a better brain oxygenation when they make every effort, factor according to a study by a professor at the University of the Basque Country" that can be googled. I am bettign they have a better muscle and body oxygenation as well. Then the arguement always goes back to - the athletes they tested, well did they have better results from their training? Can you compare two men from birth in two separate continents, make them walk the walk of life in the same shoes?
12/02 wow wow, I saw the Empire State Building Run up is now being put on by NYCruns. I clocked on registration - $125!! For a run of 11-minutes up a 400m stairwell? You don't even get to the top of the building. I am glad I ran it back in the day when my entry fee was pennies!
This is registration for the S4A 5k - basically the car, covered in Yellow T shirts is driven round Iten with a bull horn a couple of days before the day registration opens - then we set up a table at Monicah's shop. This is pretty low tech but it works. Last time registration had ended three hours after it opened! We use 'posh' signage on the day of the registration so people see the spot. Total costs? One gallon of petrol and batteries for the bullhorn. The 'sign' was recycled from the cardboard box that IMAN cosmetics sent the posters in.
Amazing lill kid raising a lot of money on charity water - called Bridger. He states, "America spends around $500 billion on Christmas gifts. That's more than $600 per person. This Christmas" That is a lot of money. Imagine if America went without gifts for just one time -- wow. Imagine.
For all New Yorkers - go to Times Sq for the free RED Campaign that U2 are holding... with Bruce Springsteen, Kanye West and more! Good for U2 for keepign the [red] buzz alive with pazazz NYC style.
Boom into December without knowing it. Time flies but when I look back then I see a lot happens too in that time space. When I think back to January I realize that this, beyond all years, has been a very unique year. Mostly because of how this year has spanned out - with a lot of things progressing, immense change in Africa with the hospital project, and hopefully a year that I build from in terms of me working at my weakest, recovering from the biggest accident in my life - yet managing to move on. Perfection is not supposed to exist. I am still suffering from almost continual head pains, I tire easier than ever before, but I am balancing and learnign to balance more.
Now, for someone more interesting - here is a nice little interview with Patrick Makau, the former WR holder in the marathon who comes from Kenya but not from the famous Rift Valley - [link]
I am making the music sound track for the Shoe4Africa race in December! Also we are now recruiting fo the oldies race on Dec 14th at Sally Kipyego's school opening.
11/24 Nice story from Iowa : Dress making lady helps African kids. It reminds me of a story I heard in Kenya. Perhaps one of the biggest business names in Kenya is Manu Chandaria who has amassed a huge personal wealth. One day, listening to his wife Aruna, she was telling about inspirational stuff -- her mother used to take Indian Saris, cut off the arms and make dresses for the poor.
Actually half a year ago I was with a friend in Kenya and he happeend to just say something nice about Shoe4Africa then he mentioned that he really doesn't do much himself (which is not true and I know of stuff that he does) but he pointed to a pile of coins and said, "All I might do is when the pile is big enough I out them into a bag and I'll give them to someone needy." Well as I say I know of otherstuff he does but also that image stuck in my head - it inspires me. And today when I think of that Lady's story, then I also think of his story and also of so many others, at fleeting moments, that motivate and inspire -helps the world go round.
11/19 Ibrahim Hussein points out that Kenya won the bid (below) but there were no other bidders. Well it is still a victory for East African athletics. Speaking of which congrats to his brother and Liana who had a child quite recently. Mbarak moved to Albuquerque, NM and has become an American and still a Master's force.Meanwhile relationships - Blessing Okagbare gets married to a Nigerian football player - Africa's fastest lady... Perfect Match... and another Match with athlete football player is Meseret Defar; Ethiopia's favorite female athlete.
Local spokal - Rock n Roll is coming to Brooklyn we read in the WSJ, next October, to the streets for a 13.1
Meanwhile David Bowie is back in the press, releasing another album - the Uber legend, who was one of the Queen of England's Greatest players peeps needs now only to re-release 'Sole' Love for the Shoe4Africa Children's Hospital and I would be super happy.
11/18 Congrats to Quatar for winning the World Champs 2017, and to Uganda for the World XC champs and State sports minister, Charles Bakkabulindi. First we have Guiyang as the world converges for the 41st IAAF World Cross Country Championships in 2015 (here before you know it).
Kenya wins the 2017 IAAF World Youth Championships - congrats there!
Talking of Kenya I ordered Christmas hats this year, I am trying to make the S4A 5k in Iten a bit more festive so our volunteers this year will be identified wearing santa hats - good for peeps to find them too!More EPO news, since Rita there was a Frenchwoman, third in the Euro's 10,000 this year - Laila Traby. Good to see some testing is being done.Meanwhile we read, after three years, the Eldoret Kip Keino track, not to be confused with the Kapsabet Kip Keino track, is soon to be finished and 'mondo-d'.
11/16 I was taken out to lunch by a gentleman who filmed the NYC marathon in 1982 and if my memory is right that was the first year there was live, by ABC, coverage of the race. Anyway the lunch had nothing to do with the marathon, or running. More charity stuff and also Africa related. He took me to Ootoya which, on 8 W 18th ST is a great authentic Japanese restaurant. Recommended - we both had a bowl of soup, and it is served with Japanese tea. Rice, tofu, egg all came floating in the soap. Check it out, if you like Japanese.
Kenneth Cheruiyot, a long time resident of Ngong, married to the Olympic 1500m 2008 Champion Nancy Langat (though long time separated), passed away in Molo Hospital. He ran for the Fila Team in the late nineties and was perhaps most known for winning the Rotterdam Marathon.
11/14 Need somebody with webskills. This is dragging. Short story our shoe4africa site is drupal which I do not understand (this website is html which is much easier). You see drupal is almost a set of templates that are glued and you can't do much about the set plates. I want to have a fab S4A page for the marathon team -- when you come to the welcome site that we link to the NYRR page of charities. I mean all the other charities have these zippy wippy sites and we have... glumch. I wants a sign up, a gallery of stars, coaching advice and Q's, albums from past years, sponsor placement (we dream) etc etc... any offers?On that note we filled our Half Marathon '15 team on the first day! Something must work... like simple email.
11/13 NYC Parks step up in style to announce a bid to win the World Youth Indoors 2016 - looks like a fab bid for the USATF and the City of NYC.A couple of days ago Germany moves to make doping a crime. (LINK) BBC
11/12 West Coast - East Coast. Over in Seattle I always have noticed how the beggars on the street look rather, well let's say, upscale compared to our New Yorkers... so I did laugh as I saw this on AOL - LINK In a Mercedes!
Isabella's restaurant to meet Kev. I told him this is the place with good table bread. I was retracting when the bread arrived, it was no longer the dark bread with raisins, it is now a plain white... Plus what was in the bread but a human hair!! I must say the service, the restaurant, and Kev's recap of the marathon - solid day in a Gale was good. I had hay and straw or whatever they called it, and the dish was topnotch. As for the Apple Endive starter salad, well you can leave that with the glass of water. Then I had an interesting meeting in Central Park with a smart Swedish guy called Bo - a very clever observation about safety road improvements for Kenya -- currently the UN has a decade program - a vital element is missing that is not even mentioned in a 136-page report but makes huge sense once Bo talks, plus is in line with some project I once did a few years back... maybe something there in the future?And on another note I was researching Ben Carson - a most interesting chap.
What 'us' runners have always known - Running 'saves' lives. (LINK)
11/11/14 Veterans Day in America, not sure about the rest of the world. So I was thinking about my grandfathers who both fought in WWII. My maternal grandfather was in the Intelligence Corps and was awarded the Knight of the Icelandic Order of the Falcon, and in Britain a Knight Commander of the order. He fought in Africa and Europe.
My other grandfater, I don't know too much about him, I do know he was in Greece on Liberation day. I will have to do some research. Very proud of both!
11/10 The more years that pass, the more I believe in the truth of people creating their own karma.I went to Fiorello's yesterday, at the invitation of Mr G the weatherman. I had a single solitary slice of cheesecake, which I did not even finish. Just did not have the appetite or hunger. I ahd a cup of coffee that was definately beyond par and did not leave me hankering for another cup. Watered down? Let's just say I was actually wondering if the waiter had done a switcheroo and given me Mr. G's cup of tea.
I must say I like that part of town. I call it the Lower West Side, in the 60's near the Lincoln Center. I walked for miles, about ten, just going places. In fact I see I am there tomorrow meeting my friend Kev who is buying a place just 'up' from there. A Sunday afternoon...
Planning the Shoe4Africa December 5k, if you are in the area you must come by. Janeth Jepkosgei and Sally Kipyego and Sylvia Kibet and Viola Kibiwott and more.... and lots of Shoes.
The Pepsico Shoe4Africa Breakfast run, nov 1st 2014. this is about a 1/3rd of the glorious team that came out to support Shoe4Africa on Marathon Sunday - thanks!
The old Ethiopia to Kenya road is becoming a highway LINK Anyone who has ever gone on this road will approve!The Rita Jeptoo saga continues. I am keeping quiet, I have known Rita for about ten years. There is a lot to this story, far more than the media is picking up, but it is Rita's story and let's hope she comes out with a plausable explanation, if as everyone thinks, that the B-sample reflects the results of the first A-sample.
I will say I trust my friend Claudio and do not believe he is part of any doping program. Claudio puts his heart and soul into his job. He is paid far less than he is worth and has the lifestyle of a humble man - in short he is not in this job for the money, that is not Claudio. Also he is not going to be the man who brings down the name of Rita. That just is not him - he has integrity, he is hard working and breaths & dreams this job.
Meanwhile Ethiopia mourns for its medal haul at the World Champs 2015 dropped as the baby faced assasin, Tirunesh Dibaba, is pregnant. Here's a little triva - where did you first read the nickname of this amazing runner??
11/07 Now I have words again - in fact here is a great project where you can combine a trip to Kenya, go to the Maasai Olympics, help, then go to Iten (link above) to have a running - self holiday. Here's the morans gig - LINK
11/06 I am speechless. There must be more than this article gives - why would the police stop people from feeding the homeless? Sad - ten sqaured. [link]
Still speechless - Gandhi would have been electricuted for sure...
11/04 Manhattan ends at 1st ST, or so it should. I rareely go to those lower parts. In fact GlobalKobal is my last stop around 14th ST. I had a meeting today "on Hudson". So I checked the subway, saw 'canal st subway' on the red line, so off I went. Reading a good book on the subway, glancing up, saw chambers, relaxed, saw Wall St, hm, then boom I am in Brooklyn! I only go to Brooklyn for the marathon and that was now past! I jumped off the train and had to take the train backwards - ugh. Things did not get better above ground. I am not a mobile phone lover but Chelimo gave me a techy phone that allows people to see a green dot on the map, so map I did. The problem was the dot could not move in the direction I wanted as there was no road, I walked and walked. Even on the street I could not find the address. Then there was no door - the entrance was more than half way down the adjoining street yet its number stated that it should have been on Hudson!
Leaving my friend told me "take the over pass" - A ha! And I thought my problems were over... I found the Canal St station, went down, could not find the red line. I walked underground to the far side, but no, Canal was now a blue line! So I asked the kiosk man. "No, you have to go back to the street, cross over the road, go to Vestry, that is on Canal for the Canal ST station with the red line..."
Yup, that is why I live uptown and this is my new life of getting lost now I don't ride a bicycle.
11/03 From the charity breakfast, a celebration of the wonderful teams who raise so much money through the event. Then it was a walk with Moshe Turk down to the hotels when I checked in to meet Frank from Belgium who is supporting young Brian Kibet, in Iten, for school fees.
It was a great day for Iten in the marathon as two residents placed first in the men's and women's though Mary now has a house in Eldoret, 30km down the road.
Marathon weekend was tremendous, truly. We had lots of Shoe4Africa fun with a superb breakfast at the Landmarc, at the Time Warner, sponsored by PepsiCo... and then the pasta party dinner at Woolworth Kitchen.
Race Day: I knew it was daylight savings, I changed every back up watch, clock but not the one on my wrist! I got up 3:45 am, made breakfast, didn't wake Chelimo, was just picking up my jacket and checked the cellphone -ugh! I went back to bed (oops, woke Chelimo) for an hour...
Outside it was cold, cold, and windy. The bus was great, waiting for the start was memories of the North of Sweden. I started off fine, jogging along with a plan to exit at the first moment of pain. Running was advised by my doctor and I took his advice when I felt ready - August 9th. I ran a few 40-mins runs, then a long run delivering flowers one day, then stopped in October with a set back... then started a few slow, small jogs at the end of October. But on race day it all felt great...
Until just after the half way, 1:35, when I reached mile 14 and all that 'running on memory' faded and I dissolved, literally, into a shuffling jog. The Harlem shuffle arrived on the Queensboro bridge. I wanted an exit and was looking as we came off the bridge. Too many barriers, I knew this from a wished-drop-out moment in earlier years. I was looking in the sixties, on First as I crawled along. Somehow by the eighties I knew I would do it, also the major pains were blisters as I have not ran and my feet are soft and unchallenged, and a distinct lack of training. I ran the second half 33-minutes slower than the first - divided by 13-miles that is a lot of minutes!
10/31 Shocked to read about Rita Jeptoo's positive test on the A sample. Hoping the B is a negative and there is something wrong.
A balloon was deflated in the running community... so disappointing.
At the NYC expo yesterday, good to see so many familiar friends there. Lots and lots of positive energy -- all things good about running! Stop by the TEAM STICK booth for a last minute rub down; that is my tip!
The race is coming up in December. Monicah's shop - registration, 22nd Dec, free with first come, first served!
10/27 The week of NYC Marathon - a great time to be in the city, so much going on with the world coming to the city as this truly is the most global running event on the planet. Expo starts on Thursday and every day in the park is a proverbial zoo of International color and flavor. Go running on the bridle path and the odds are you'll run into the faves. Let's hope for good weather.
10/25 With Brother Colm in Iten, the 'father' of this town. And the star of a A Man on a Mission.
Self Magazine feature one of our runners Kate Young! LINK.
Some of the Shoe4Africa runners from 2013 - it is soon meeting time for 2014! Looking forward to seeing faces from the peeps I have been E-talking to for the last few months,and of course the regulars. Today I saw one of our runners was featured in SELF!
10/20 Good article by the IAAF journalist of the year, Elias Makori, who highlights the sad face that even though today, in Kenya, it is a day to celebrate past heroes that the past-heroes are often not in our thoughts...
< a href="http://www.nation.co.ke/sports/Forgotten-shujaa-Maiyoro-is-detained-in-hospital-over-bill/-/1090/2492358/-/ky55fh/-/index.html">Article]. I was thinking about this, and why it is so. I mean the land that was gifted to him should remain his. There are a couple of issues to this article - first the 'what is his by rights' and also 'should he be helped for who he was' -- I have met Maiyoro, only when he was long time retired. I don't know what type of person he was, the impression I got was a very social nice man. Maybe the Government can gift free health care to those who attain a certain status? Not sure what the answer is... I know many times athletes unions have attempted to be started, but no one is willing to put in capital. IF a proper union was formed, with dues, then this story would be wiped from the press but... I remember when Lucas Sang was buried, how many athletes said they would come by, help, support the kids etc... and a year later the wife told me nobody visited, nobody helped, everyone stayed away. There are no easy answers.
In the mind boggling continuation of world dominance at the Half Marathon distance of late an unknown 21-yr old Kenyan, Abraham Cheroben, joined the ranks of Kenyan Valencia half winners with a super fast 58:42... Emily Chebet took the women's in 68-mins and one tick, a new CR... Other news Bernard Kipyego takes the Amsterdam Marathon in 2:06:22 in front of his training partner Rotich, almost a minute back, with our friend Abel Kirui making a return to the finisher's line with a solid 2:09 with his focus on qualifying to run for Kenya next year in the world's - he has two titles and wants three.
In Iten we have a French running shoe designer called Stephane. He is from the company Kalenji (short for Kalenjin, the running tribe). I have never heard of this brand but they tell me in France it is quite big. We should have a Shoe4Africa Kalenji Shoe...Speaking of which thanks to Shoe4Africa Germany - boxes of shoes arriving from Germany.
10/19 Today I was at the hospital then a touch of education as I zipped over to the Eldoret club (where Edna Kiplagat was taking her kids swimming) to speak to the Kensap kids - kids who have won the chance to get an amazing scholarship to group of topnotch American Uni's. Professor Mike Boit asked me to come and it is always a pleasure to meet these young inspired (hopefully) changemakers of the next generation.
Mike Boit founded this program quite a few years ago and was helped by Paul Tergat.
I also met the head of the football for the North Rift - tomorrow we have football! A little S4A project.
Super impressed by Pieter Langerhorst & Lornah Kiplagat's latest venture - LornahSports.com. Wow is all I can say.
10/17 Eating traditional vegetables (Managu) and Ugali at the home of Chairman of Athletics Kenya, Isaiah Kiplagat. He has a beautiful house not so far from Eldoret. Going home the roads were so muddy as the rains came.In the morning I was at the hospital site and then with the PR team of Moi Referral. We are planning our next event.
10/16 Sitting in a restaurant in Eldoret having a meeting with Yusef who happens to own the restaurant. It is raining cats and dogs. Just got the great news that PEPSICO shoe4africa marathon team breakfast is going to be at the Landmarc restaurant. I was actually there with Richard and Tony last month discussing the hospital project and GE that lead to last Friday's meeting. Same restaurant where we had George Hirsch's 79th, and where I was with Zee & David earlier this year... it is indeed a Landmarc, right by the Time Warner for a great pre-central park run.
Talking running who was zipping by this morning but Wilson Kipsang, getting ready to try and win the TCS NYC marathon in two weeks... he is targeting the course record and not of course trying to recapture his WR that was lost last month.
10/15 In Kenya I drive a lot usually. Most of the time back and forth to Eldoret. That is where I went today. Morning was to a site meeting when all the key team members came together - Architect, site manager, finance manager, contractor, Nurses, electrical, structural engineers and more, plumbers blah blah and we have our monthly meeting - there is so much going on. Progress continues at an amazing rate too.
Then I was working on the Internet, then I had to go and do banking duties - bumped into Moses Kiptanui in the bank. Then I went to meet the man who prints the Shoe4Africa T shirts for me. Then to meet the DC to talk about some other deals, it was a long day but the goodness was I got home before the heavy rains as I like driving, but not in heavy rains!
A special picture for me, nearly my last ever. Here I was going into surgery on October 7th 2013 - if I had been one hour later this would have been a picture of a dead man as at this stage I had immense internal bleeding of the brain. Kind've freaks me out to think about it but am ever grateful of the positive story that soon after this picture I went into the ICU where I remained for a few days.
The Justin Gaitlin controversy continues as in Oslo reports show that if you Dope the effects will continue to last. The sport needs an overhaul before the Tour de France comes to the running world. If Gaitlin received a lifetime ban he should not be lining up for a shot as the athlete of the year - what is that telling the future generation? Case History - Ludmilla Engqvist of Sweden. Caught for doping. Came back. Amazingly started to run faster that when she was doping (read into the lines). A few years later we find out she was of course doping. Another 'Glory runner' who was adored in Sweden (when she became a Swedish national) and I recall (many of) the Swede's saying, 'she has done her time, now welcome her back to the sport'.Okay, let's go over to diseases: The link to read about the Ebola efforts, over in Liberia [link].
Shem, son of Rita Jeptoo, watches Chicago '14
"Do you believe in miracles?" Claudio, coach to Rita Jeptoo asked Rita's sister, one of three who had just arrived with two brothers, and Rita's son and nephew, to watch the race. "Because I don't and she will need a miracle to win."
For the last five days Rita has not trained. In fact the physio has been working on her 24/7. When the race started we were expecting Florence who had talked 2:18 shape to be there pushing. Nope. Strangely enough, maybe they were watching Rita (and not knowing) the pace was very slow.
Claudio explained the whole process, Rita not feeling well, going to Nairobi for a check up getting the all clear, a final session, pushing a little and boom - a bump on the tendon and no running. "This is not looking good, she is not running normal..." he stated as we watched what had to be the worst coverage ever of a marathon on NBC - (imagine watching the US Open when we see a weather lady more than Serena Williams, where we get Joe-on the Street more than we saw Eliud Kipchoge). Then Claudio gets crazy distracted by his athlete Dickson who will run a one minute PR to become the latest in the Sub 2:05 club. Claudio screams in the Italian language, hits the sofa, the wall, runs out on the veranda, has ten Italian calls, runs back in...
Meanwhile Visiline, a 2:26 runner is screaming so loud as Rita reappears and is now leading. Janeth Jepkosgei, no stranger to the fast running is also clapping and Rita's sisters are shouting out - well one is down on the ground praying...
Rita has had the month of months as a lead up due to personal issues and this injury - indeed a miracle happened. Fore a woman who could barely run days earlier... rumors about we'll see Rita on Fire in Europe for her next marathon!
Lunch at the Eldoret Club, breakfast at the bank, quick site visit, checking on a dental and more - lots going on in Kenya.
10/11 Iten, Kenya - just bumped into Edna Kiplagat, straight from the gym (the world champion), she's going to be one of the favorite's for the NYC Marathon.
Yesterday in Nairobi visiting GE and talking hospitals. Traffic continues to be terrible. The trip to the airport was 25km and it took 2-hours. I sat down in the waiting room and who was right next to me - 1972 Olympic medalist Mike Boit, a friend for many years.
Talking Kenya's elite women--Tomorrow is Chicago and I am sad to say I don't think Rita Jeptoo will defend her title. If she did she would have been the first person to win four WMM title races in two years. That was based upon... (above)
10/07 Yesterday I was at a nice restaurant thanks to Stacey doijng 'shoe4africa stuff' on Lex at 104th El Paso I think it was called. I had the entree fish Pollock that was really good,a nd the desserts are pretty good too. I went for the top item that was a small round chocolate java cake thing. This restaurant that gets good zagats rating IS good - thumbs up. Recommended.
My day took a turn for the worse. BAck home that night working on the computer my leg was hurting, nothing new. Then I had to take my sock off there was so much pain and I was shocked to see that the ankle was about 50% bigger than the other on the medial side! Wow. How come? Plus my calf was bulging and really painful. As if it would burst out of its seams. When I stood the pain was even worse and super tender. My Docs-online told me - Go get it checked, sounds like thrombosis. I said, "It is 9pm" but I got, Go. So Go I did which found me at Harlem ER at 9:30 pm and wouldn't you know I was there till 2:00 AM the morning of the 7th (today) - exactly one year ago from when I was taken to Harlem Hospital on an ambulance!
10/05 A-hem, I missed Grete's. Blame Dave Siegel & Zee. What happened, ont he rainiest of mornings... they turned up! So we ran and I thought one loop, it ended up two. I was rejoicing thinking this is my long long run.. till I remembered each loop was six miles not eight as I thought. Shows how long since I have run a loop in Central Park. Well the master plan was to finish and pop into NYRR Towers and pick up a number. Wouldn't you know I forgot, then I was dashign down to the Wall St area to meet my design mentor Peter Farago swhere we coffee'd and spent a fun afternoon. In fact I was 'down' there the night before checking out the Woolworth kitchen restaurant for the SHOE4AFRICA pasta party. Funny story I posted a few years ago for a place then Nicole S Q told me about this place "Lou's a great guy, he will help you." Put on the fast forward and Jon said, "Lou's a great guy..." Turns out he knows of him, knows of S4A and agreed to give us his place nad Jon is helping us with food AND gave a $3,000 donation... we had a good night! I had three glasses of Cranberry - my fave drink! I also ate salmon.
Fast forward to meeting Grete's but I did do some coaching with Kev who kindly gave me a $500 donation for Shoe4Africa - a great patch of fund raising. Then another athlete I coach Will sent in 100 buckaroos - I want a weekend every day for S4A. Then thanks to Dave Siegel who hosted a Shoe4Africa board meeting on Sunday afternoon in one of those posh tall buildings - Guess what, I saw our sponosr logo through the window!! Can you see it, in red? Small center?
10/04 JOB POSTING, from our friends at Urban: "We are hiring for full and part time work at the store at Madison and 92nd. This obviously comes with no obligation to run for UA. We offer a supportive environment for runners and great store discounts. A great job for anyone who loves running. Positions open now! Anyone interested can contact Jerry by email. Jerry@UrbanAthleticsNYC.com
The facts are that Justin Gaitlin has two life time bans from being caught for cheating by doping in order to run faster. Today somehow, in a sport that says it is promoting Zero Tolerance Gaitlin is not only competing but he is running faster than before. And to champion his cause the IAAF have promoted his name to be one of the few for the IAAF Athlete of the Year.
Two strong runners come to NYC to replace... two strong runners - Boston Marathon Champion Lelisa Desisa of Ethiopia and 2013 Bank of America Chicago Marathon runner-up Jemima Sumgong of Kenya are to replace Stanley Biwott & Priscah Jeptoo -- three athletes of the four are trained by, in my opinion, the best coach in the systems today - Claudio Berardelli.
Toby, Daniel Komen, Ezekiel Kemboi, Joshua Cheromei, John Ngugi, (hidden Christopher Cheboiboch), Benjamin Limo, Noah Ngeny, Sammy Korir, Joshua Chelanga. Yup, quite a line up.
I used to do this web page as a way to 'recruit' shoes through running news on a local/international scene. Then I carried on, not sure why. Then it turned more to food. -- Maz Mezcal, I think it is called on 86th ST between 3rd & 2nd, a good mexican place if you are in the neighborhood. In fact I should not have been, as I was meeting my friend Javier but I got the address wrong by 12 blocks... as good fortune had it the place he picked was super crowded so he came 'north'. Great Mexican, I took the fish (as usual) and asked for spicey, the only problem was their spicey was needed an upboost, but the fish was good as was the guacamole. My friend Javier is a most interestign guy - his father is the only Argentinian to win a Nobel Prize for Literature.Unbelievably Train Hard, Win Easy. The Kenyan Way. will be 20-years old in 2017... I am thinking of bringing out an E-edition, and maybe a European book. Maybe...
10/01 Question of the day - will Africans sweep ALL the Asian Games distance medals? [link]
09/30 Le Bilboquet on East 60th (park to Madison) - Shmuel took me out, it is quite the swanky place (on the next table was the Google CEO Eric S. whom I did not recognize but have heard he was a big help in Kibera). Anyway we were talking about the World Champs in Boston, in February... for indoor rowing amongst other things. The food was advocado & Crab salad, riviera halibut, tarte tatin & (Shmuel's choice) Opus One 2010...
A step up from my bagel lunch. I must profess a rolling new year's resolution to make a better diet...
Michael Capiraso, George Hirsch, and Mary Wittenberg - celebrating that George's finish to run the fastest 10-miler ever ran on Bronx Soil for an 80-year old man @ 1-hr 31-minutes.
Dennis Kimetto has always promised to do so, and yesterday he did so - insane timing. 2:02 is unbelievable and yes, in less than 20-years we will see a Sub 2-hr Kenyan. Think how long Densamo's 2:06:50 was the beesknees... The big question is can Kimetto hold his form from 2013 till 2016? Next up is Rita Jeptoo 2:17 in Chicago.
09/26 I do wonder, if I was an African who had seen the poverty of my country, if I could rent a residence that would not even be my primary residence, for $40,000 per month. LINK Just wondering...
09/24 This weekend Mr. George Hirsch is running the Bronx 10-miler at the grand age of 80! For me this is amazing, but then I will remind him (as I hope to be there with him) that the great Al Gordon ran his first marathon at the age of 82!
It is 37 days till the NYC Marathon, America's greatest one day sporting event and the first year of the TCS sponsorship. But before that we have the Berlin and a few others. Thanks to Don Favre who is running Berlin and has raised over $5,000 for Shoe4Africa.
Last year it was a world record run by Wilson Kipsang, of Kenya.
I am glad to see Grete's Gallop is continuing after the withdrawal of the Norwegian Embassy - the race is now sponsored by Memorial Sloan Kettering - so I am expecting to see Mark Bilsky out there!Not really a plant person but I must say I like Orange Tulips - is that the national emblem of Holland?Meanwhile running news - Bedan Karoki, from Nyahururu, same tribe as Sammy Wanjiru, wins the Philadelphia half in 59:23 - ironic that the Philadelphia half event is much better than the Philadelphia Full where you you would not get runners like Karoki in the field. Karoki debuted at the Half earlier this year starting off with a 59-minute run! His goal is the WR and he'll probably get it. Not sure if they are counting this run as the course record for Philadelphia, or they are keepign the drugs-fueled runner Matthew Kisorio's run of 58-minutes. Kisorio is back racing after serving a 2-year doping ban and says his goal is the WR - one impartially hopes the drugs runner doesn't get the record, and that the race directors don't invite them.
09/19 In an email today from CON ED (NYC's power company) - 'Is your old refrigerator or freezer just not cutting it anymore? We' ll pick it up and recycle it for free, and give you $50. Plus, get an additional $50 rebate when you upgrade to a qualifying energy-saving model.' What? Can you believe it? The struggles I had with my monster sized fridge, when I tried to get it out of my apartment, when it was too heavy so I tried to take the friedge to pieces with a hammer, when I hit something that released some weird sort of gas, when I had to run to the computer, fire up the Internet and ask Google if I was going to be poisoned! And I could have had someone come and take it away? And be paid? Good for Con Ed.
09/17 In Seattle, drinking a cup of Gevalia coffee, French Roast - possibly the best coffee one can get. I am humming Sade's Coast to Coast. Working on a laptop and not for the first time getting distracted. I was trying to win a competition a friend of mine sent me the link for One.org -- then I found out it had to be an African registered charity, founded in the African states. Funny the last Grant I applied for, a European one, told me that "It did not look good to fund an American charity for work in Africa..."
I tell you you seriously can't win in this game! Meanwhile I push on regardless of all the pitfalls, side jams and mamajamas. In fact I am seriously planning to add another floor - Dental & Eye! So I will be searching my contacts to see who I know in that department!
Meanwhile other good news is that I am planning to build more toilets, in Naibery; just outside of Eldoret.
Athletics - The Continental Cup was held recently, where athletes run for... their continents. It was another major flop for the crowds as the athletes performed before thousands upon thousands of empty seats. The Athletics world needs the NBA.
09/12 Yesterday I was called for Jury Duty so I was in the financial district... as I was 13-years ago. At 8:15 I ran past the World Trade Center, past Century 21 and East to go and meet LQD. We were running when the "noise" happened. And we walked, jogged towards the noise and a spiral of smoke. LQD had an apartment on Rector Place, and I was looking after an apartment for a friend on 35 West Broadway - 100-meters away... The smoke, the smell the burning. So sad for so many people that were inside the building... and all the firemen who walked into the buildings to help; so many not coming out.
So as I left the court house, cut west to go over onto the WSH many memories, too many, came back of that bright September morning when NYC changed forever.
West Broadway and that apartment looking very different today.
9/11 The 5th Ave mile is coming this weekend - met with Sally Kipyego who is here in NYC. She was the winner of the Half in March. Not sure of who else is running. But for those of you in NYC you can view it live... on 5th Ave.Today is the long awaited verdict for the Oscar Pist. case. What a drama; am guessing Guilty.
09/09 American football 'idols' -- I was riding the NYC subway and read the free newspaper that of course highlights the scandal stories. I read about a football player with a 35-million dollar contract who slugged his wife and knocked her out cold, and spat at her. He received a two game ban.
Then reading this article a name I had not heard for a while who I presumed had been banned -- Michael Vick, a man who "pleaded guilty to running an illegal dog fighting operation that was so ghastly, the losers were drowned, electrocuted or shot" -- I was shocked to see this man playing for a NY team. Disgusting. What a sick man. One can surmise that the NY Jets will probably extend a welcoming hand out to Ray Rice.
09/07 Amazing lady! at the age of 99 running like... amazing! well done.
09/06 Sad that time ran out for Joan Rivers; a legend of the Upper East Side. I spent a morning with her a few years ago. She was a hoot, I was surprised how tiny she was as I had seen her on TV. She actually lived right opposite Shmuel's apartment, and she had a 'tavern-on-the-green' living room by the looks of it. The funeral is tomorrow in the 60's - I hope she gets a fab send off!
Shoe4Africa Germany! Great to see this article and see us growing out globally! The article is here, in German. [link]Tomorrow is the Great North Run - Abel Kirui wanted to run but he was told 'no' he could not. There is a huge misconception that if you are an elite athlete, like Abel a double world marathon champion', that you can enter a race (even when not requesting an appearance fee) yet the truth is far from that. In the women's race Mary Keitany is making an appearance, Vs Edna Kiplagat, and Vs Dibaba. The talk on the street in Iten (Mary's home, and Edna's) from the male athletes is that Spencer Barden is going a step too far in trying to get one home town winner after Mo Farah failed to win last year. Personally I don't think Mo is trying to dodge anyone (As the athletes, or certainly many of the vocal ones, are saying). Mo is a class athlete and would be above such a thing. But race directors have been known to 'try' for a certain result. There was a certain Spanish incident when a famous Kenyan athlete was paid to not win, and paid a bonus if he woulf finish behind a local athlete (according to him)...
Anyway the rationale is a few of the world's fastest half marathoners could not get into the race (so is their word), so the news now sadly is that Mo is dodging them!
Lornah Kiplagat got a taste of this treatment when she tried to win (another) Mini marathon in NYC in 2004 and the race stated it wanted an American winner and did not invite any foreign athlete... so it got an American winner! And this year when there was indeed an American winner running against an International field the press wrote, "The first American winner since Deena Kastor won in 2004" which was indeed trus but did not really tell the whole story - Anyway, the race is tomorrow and I personally hope that Mo wins, because I happen to believe he's the best distance runner in the world, male or female, for the last two years.
Anyway leading the Kenyan charge are two guys in the PACE management team who probably won't fly Jambojet again - inside joke from a previous race for them... Jambojet gets you there? Unless you do domestic travel in Kenya and know how Jambojet works!
09/05 GINO STRADA, an Italian who founded Emergency Italia. An amazing man who I had the honor to meet a few years ago.
The years trundle by, but the memories remain! Thanks to my friend Riccardo. Web link = here
Back from Iten, but a day beforeI left I was talking and walking along with Timo when I bumped into Sally walking along the street. She's coming to NYC for the 5th Ave mile next week! A global world - nice when you say goodbye and a collective see you soon works. Sally is part of the new generation and proved that resoundingly with an Olympic silver in London.
09/03 Nice little off the cuff article about running and with a plug for Super coach Claudio - LINK in East Africa's top newspaper.
Modern cell phones have this thing that changes your spelling - especially when in Kenya. I was sending a text to Sharon Cherop - it was supposed to read Hakuna Shida (no probs) but instead it came out as Hakuna Shoes. Sharon was thinking I needed shoes! Look out for Sharon, in Shoes running Rwanda and then Frankfurt.
In Berlin Shoe4Africa have a team of mainly Germans here's my squad! 5740 Bettag, Urban (GER)
12951 Harding, Bob (GBR)
F4790 Koj, Anna (POL)
17201 Kugler, Michael (GER)
21943 Osmark, Leif (DEN)
23913 Reinhold, Jean Pierre (GER)
26424 Seppälä, Timo (FIN)
30313 Wiedenmann, Axel (GER) -- thanks!In Iten the High Altitude Training College is opening - run & study! Prof. Mike Boit is working hard with Starbucks & Simba to get this thing going. Good to see Mike, have not seen him for a few years, a Nandi legend.
08/28 In the days when we were red:
Here's Eugenia Yuen, a friend of Leong's who I believe has a book coming out soon. First year we were odd color green, then red, then I think we have been grey or white.
Wondering whether we need a separate web page for Shoe4Africa and the Shoe4Africa Hospital? If so what would the hospital site be called??
08/26 An old picture from a few years ago. At Edna's house in Iten, with her mother. Edna Kiplagat is today the 2-time world marathon champion.
We are in the 'winter' now in Kenya. In fact last night was freezing with buckets of rain. Luckily in business hours it was dry hence I got around Eldoret before the floods. Luckily now with the roof secured work progresses regardless of the weather. Although it was a swamp to get back in the car. Tomorrow, I believe, we are having a top-off ceremony to celebrate the roof being complete!What is the future of running? Will Kenya lead the way? We think so [link]
A typical picture of Africa. In one glance the location is set.
Back from a day in Nairobi - glad to see new roads built, but driving out on a Friday afternoon was a drag. We got from Eldoret to Westlands in under four hours thanks to a speedy prado on the Eldama Ravine route. Getting back that evening was a trip. However in Nairobi I met the CEO of Equity Bank - James Mwangi, Ernst & Young's entrepeuner of the year 2012, as I say, 'google him' - a pretty amazing guy. Then it was off to the Office of the Deputy President whom I met the last time I was in Kenya. This time it was to meet the Chief of Staff. Good meets. The day before in Eldoret I met the people behind private health, the CEO's of Mediheal, Eldoret Hospital, Reale Hospital & St. Lukes. I am starting to feel like a medic.
Running wise our neighbor is entered in Birmingham today, in the 600m - Mr. Rudisha, representing Iten.
08/20 Used to be a time of daily updates.. used to be a time of running focused news - these days it is more of medical people, and politicians... although I keep on running into a lot of running peeps here. In fact just yesterday I met Martin Keino whilst in a restaurant having a meeting about children hospital murals with a guy from Indiana. Met Brother Colm - always great to catch up with him, a friend of twenty years. Then a lot of Governor's, Deputy Govs, Senators blah blah as we are one year into the building. The only way I can keep in touch with what I am doing is scrolling back on my phone and seeing calls/meetings. This is quite a journey I can tell you. Almost every day I am in Eldoret for work and getting bored with the commute (two dead cows on the road today, cut off by two matatu's - all the usual). Today a friend from the medical world in Nairobi is visiting - Priten. Introduced to me by Chucky China - small world!
To a flashback picture when the Virgin London marathon kindly sent me 3500 marathon jackets and we gave them away in a village near Kitale. They did a great thing - the people were so pleased.
A day in the life... Arrived in Nairobi, I turned on my Kenya phone, that had been switched off for a while and the phone rings like magic - it is Daniel Komen, the runner from the 90's. I am surprised, weird coincidence he should call at that instant. Met Manu Chandaria, one of Kenya's most influential business men. He is going to Mombasa for business. Jumped on a plane to Eldoret, met Kip Keino, the running legend who started the Kenya-running theme back in the 1960's, got off the plane in ED and ran into Wilson Kipsang who is looking very fit and well. We went to Iten, and I went and had dinner with Lornah Kiplagat (the Simba). Cold in Kenya - well all is relative.
At the Paul Tergat race in Baringo, Kenya with Moses Tanui, and Paul. Actually I went there with Ezekiel Kemboi now I remember, and there was a whole host of athletes there coming not just to run but also to support Paul's event. Another athlete had a bad car crash later that night, the man finished third in the race can't recall his name. memories.
Kenya finished top in the commonwealth games medals... for athletics (what counts). No doubt they did not win the syncro-swimming awards. Powerhouse Jamaica were @ #2.Meanwhile we hear there is a phone app that wards off mosquitoes no less! I was shocked when someone showed me the app that reads your heart rate. I thought phones were for answering.With Kev at Harlem Social -- a man runs by with a gun and disappears down a subway... followed by about twenty police cars who then started darting off in every direction that the subway ran.
Next day I met Jon & Summer to talk S4A stuff - on the Upper West Side at Josie's things were a little quieter... noticed that they have interesting table bread there these days (And better salmon than at Harlem Social).
I had the idea that he man would not be drunk, in a nightclub, brawling... the Oscar Circus in South Africa continues... [link]
Meanwhile a much more positive read about a double amputee - [link].
Every time another 'athlete' gets caught for cheating with drugs you wonder how long has she managed to evade the testing system. Of course they will tell you "It's the first time" but when you read a world champion from Botswana tests positive at the Commonwealth Games you do wonder - Amantle Montsho appears to have shamed a nation.
08/02 Congrats to Lynsey Sharp of Scotland winning he commonwealth games 800m -- yet another athlete who trains at HATC in Iten, Kenya. Great to see Eunice take gold - another of Claudio Berardelli's athletes.
As part of Shoe4Africa we are looking at starting a running camp for Junior talents. Just trying to get the pieces into shape to hold a Bi-annual camp and start the club. Of course using the talents of people like Claudio! Also Moses Kiptanui, coach to so many top athletes, and Haron Lagat, the best steeplechase pacer on the circuit. We have the location, near Cherangani - now we need the support, but we have some ideas.
07/29 Agreeing with Elias Makori - Bahrain bringing Kenyan's under the age of 18 to "win" glory for their country should be addressed. It is a real odd scenario. Maybe a simple step of having the athlete being able to identify the national anthem would be a step in the right direction - something the Asian marathon champion, Shami (of Kenya) was unable to do - and he was a senior.
Mary Wittenberg, Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman and moi at the Achilles 5-miler in Central Park. Was this really one month ago?
Givedirectly - 2.4 million grant from? New? This is an old and tried concept; President Moi made a Nyayo legacy of driving around giving Hand outs in the 1980's & 90's What is new? Meanwhile... with new initiatives South Korea pulled itself out of poverty by investing in business, healthcare, and education. Givedirectly appears to be moving backwards; making the poor more reliant on waiting for handouts in a form of lottery giving. link
PS: I am all for injecting more cash into Africa, do not get me wrong. I spoke with a headmistress in Kibera about this type of project - her take? "The West, for its own means, continues to turn our continent into one of beggars waiting for the next boat. I remember the days before Aid handouts - we were so much better off in those days." H. Otieno.
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Thanks to Mother Nature - LINK 12 things you can do with your shoes, and we are number seven.Commonwealth Games - Very disappointing to see only 25 men and 21 women entered in a championship marathon. Live tomorrow morning...Moi Referral gets a new Chairman, they will run the Shoe4Africa Children's Hospital. [link]And since we are linking - The Scarificial Instinct - thanks Amitava! [link]Meanwhile someone made a donation to Shoe4Africa for the children's hospital. They tried to get a matchign gift from Johnson & Johnson. The compnay snet me a letter to tell me that this is not possible because they support certain missions, like Child Welfare, and Shoe4Africa does not fit inside their mission - hm, go figure!
07/23 In light of the Commonwealth Games starting we suggest a link - watch 100 seconds [link] with Brother Colm & David Rudisha.Meanwhile in the world juniors we hear that Bahrain has been importing Kenyan juniors, read more in the Daily Nation. An article entitled the scent of oil.
07/13 So the life has been heavily influenced by watching football - what a great tournament and truly there is only One world cup. I think the result was spot on too - the best two teams got to meet each other and there was not much between them at all. Funnily enough I think I have only seen two 'live' games in my life (I am an armchair fan, and a bad one at that - much prefer to do the sport than to watch). Anyway, a long, long time ago I saw Sheffield United play. and who was playing but Alejandro Sabella - in those days he was called Alex. Meanwhile over in Brazil, my S4A team
I saw a nice documentary by a guy called Tom Shadyac who was the director of quite a few hit comedies till he had a bicycle accident and started to ask Life Questions -- worth watching; I AM.
David Rudisha hits form and becomes the big media game of the Commonwealth Games! Brother Colm's most famous athlete and that is saying something.
07/07 A nice article where I was quoted...[link]World Cup Fever - after wathcing virtually zilch we watched the whole of the quarters... Holland Vs Costa Rica, the best so far! Funny other huge sporting events go on, but does anyone notice? This must be the year of the un-noticed other sports.
07/03 Sad to say that Track & Field is now the new Tour de France - the BBC, tongue in cheek, report on the Lausanne 100m race pointing out the joke of modern day track. Tyson Gay, gets a ban then gets off with a slap on the wrist, Gaitlin had two positive tests, a lifetime ban, and somehow is still competing,a nd to top things off the guy who finished third also was banned...
What message is this sending out to young athletes? We want to keep the 'names' in the sport? This is the opposite to Zero Tolerance.
Here is the 'reason' why Gay got a 50% reduction in his 2-year ban, "We appreciate Tyson doing the right thing by immediately withdrawing from competition once he was notified, accepting responsibility for his decisions, and fully and truthfully co-operating with us," said Usada chief executive Travis Tygart. So basically take drugs, get caught and say I did it and you get a season out? Sad.
07/01 July '14 - who would have believed it? Last night my freind Shmuel and his wife Anat took me out to SushiAnn - a top Japanese place off Madison at 52nd ST - if you like the best raw fish then this is an absolute great place. It is my second time and the quality is fab! Shmuel was telling me about a billion dollar company he owns quite a lot of call Mobila (or something) that has technology to make cars safer. It is an Israeli company that is going public later this month, in about three weeks. I shall be watching out... that after he gets back from going to Brazil for three days to watch the finals, courtesy of Hyundai.Funny, I am actually trying to learn the fish market, on a small scale - tilapia... long story, to do with the hospital and sorts.
06/30 Thanks to all who came and made the Hope & Possibility such a great event. Good album of photos on the NYRR.org website. The Attorney General of NY & Jon Stewart (now his third time of running), along with the Singing Policeman, and Cigna's Dave F. gave the Achilles a good send off before most ran the 5-mile loop and others completed our 1.5-mile Fun Run, then of course the Kids had their dash. It was a good running morning with blue skies and sun! The day started very early, almost everything went smooth, and we were wrapped up by noon. Thanks to all the sponsors & supporters.Later that day I went to dinner with my friends Wendy, Ben & KT all the way over in NYC from California at Chez Lucienne -- they are great S4A supporters, helpers and good friends!6/27 Dinner last night at the house of my good friend George Hirsch's. We sat out overlooking Central Park on his amazing view balcony. Read about George on a wonderful post by Amby Burfoot of RW [LINK]
NYC continues at its best right now, Harlem streets were buzzing with gospel music. It continues to be hot and humid. Last night I finally turned on my fan as it was stifling (I don't have air conditioning). Some people pay to go to a gym and lie in the sauna - just don't turn on your AC and stay in bed.
Yes we have a sponsor! Thanks to Caroline & Jason (good friends to S4A), and remember this face...
In ten years... fleet feet. Can we change her life?
Hope & Possibility is closed online but open for walk in registrations at the NYRR.
06/26 Jon Stewart promises to be there for the Achilles race on Sunday, just heard him say so via the Vid at the Achilles Gala last night. He is running again.
Full of inspiring stories; so many people who have been dealt life changing blows, but have got back up. The Achilles continues to Inspire. AS we mentioned before the Attorney General and the former Governor of NY, David Paterson, will also be coming to meet, greet and run
Meanwhile political news here in Harlem--Charlie Rangel rebuffs primary challenger to win 23rd House term. Charlie is a Harlem institution. I met Alan of the Flyers earlier for a glass of pineapple juice and he was bringing me up to date with the opposition, who seems to have fallen by the way side. Charlie, 84 years young, gets two more years.
Thursday is the last day to sign up for the Achilles race at the NYRR.org - we hope to sell out and are very close. Askale Merachi from Ethiopia is tipped to win the women's open division. This is the race that nearly always has some interesting folks - we know we have the AG and a Governor, plus we might have a couple of others in the mix!Great hot weather in NYC right now - just nice, this is the greatest time in the city, so much going on. You walk through Central Park and a million things are going on all over the place.Big evevnts are the world cup - can David Rudisha & Mo Farah push the Commonwealth Games into really being called a global event? The Scots think so. If U.Bolt would turn up they would be in business.Philip Hersh, Tribune reporter tells that Rita Jeptoo is back to Chicago for the fall marathon. No surprises there. If she maintains the Boston form she will be the one.06/22 My Canadian friends took me out on Saturday - first the maker of the Film Gun Runners which will be coming out next year, thanks Anjali! Then Chris, Dev & Kathleen who made me feel like a foreigner in NYC as we went to a musical about 1980's Rock music called 'rock the ages' -- I think I was the only person in the audience who did not know the songs, plus I had a hard time trying to fathom what the people were saying (singing). It was a case of study hard to watch what was going on; so I felt like I was in a decade class history lesson, learning something! For the first time I felt like a foreigner as that area of NYC is almost like another town -- Times Square, more unique than ever before. Gotta love NYC.Sunday I was up, up in the Northern Bronx in a place called Pelham - again, put me outside of my normal circle and I feel like a square. And that was a writing project... What films, musicals and writings; I am become cultured!
"Take your pick, which pair do you want?"
This young girl won the Kibuswa Cross Country run in a sprint finish. She stood for quite a while not really knowing what to do. I believe she will grow up to be a talented runner. If you would wish to sponsor her, mentor her through her athletics career, send her shoes once every six months and other sports gear then let me know! You could change this girl's life. Her parents are poor farm workers from the North of Kenya.
Happy Birthday Mr. George Hirsch - 80-years!! The Chairman of the NYRR is also one of America's greatest age group runners. I coached George back when he was 73 and ran 3:30 at Berlin - big talent and he's going out to the Queens 10k on Sunday to, I guess, win there! I've known George since the early nineties; a most remarkable chap. Mary Wittenbery threw a surprise birthday party for him with a luncheon at the new Tavern on the Green. My take on the food - well I had a Greek Salad (value for money was very low - check out what you get!), cheesecake - was the size of a thimble, maybe order three? Coffee - benefit of the doubt, I did ask twice for strong but maybe it was delivered as decaf, and I had three scoops of Sorbet - one scoop, the raspberry was good!
However the decor and setting are great - the new design so much better than the old gawdy set up and it helped there was beautiful sunshine.
A few days earlier I was at the Harlem Red Rooster, which has become the destination restaurant in Harlem - check it out on 125th & Lennox. Marcus Samuelsson has done something tremendous there and also inspired other great places too to step up - The Corner Social opposite, Chez Lucienne next door and I have not visited but close by a new place called the Harlem Shake. Of course there is the old landmark place if you like Southern fried food too - Sylvia's.
Few days before I was meeting my friend Chris, we were at Tony's on Third Ave & 65th - you do not leave hungry from that place. In fact you order halves...
A rather frightening strong from Douglas, a member of the NYC running community that moved away, and is thankfully recovered after a very alarming story. [LINK]06/20 I was wandering around the mid sixties the other day - I love NYC is the Summer. Such a differing feel to the winter. Out of all the cities in the world NYC is so flavorful of contrastting people - I realize this more and more how everyone fits in in NYC in every neighborhood.Up to Yonkers two days ago to visit Afya a medical supply team who have a great Org set up there in the middle of nowhere. The last time I was in Yonkers I went to run a half marathon there and I discovered monumental hills, beyond hills! The part I remember the best was the lady with the Sledge hammer who came running at us when we asked her for directions. I was with Urs, newly transplanted from Switzerland, and we were in his wife's very nice car. She was not a happy camper; luckily we escaped.One week to the H&P 5-miler. It is Sunday and the sign up is on the NYRR.org - quick!
06/17 A good off-the-wall story about Kenyan runners (link)and what are they doing with impacts for society. And the story highlights the Charles character who became a Kenyan youtube hit after a post race interview.
The British Guardian take a photo of a lady in a unit collecting recycled trash and make a blazing headline, "The woman in the bin is the ugly truth..." Yes poms please stay away from NYC as you would find the same here - and we call it industry. [link].Sad news over in Kenya at the coast as terror continues with an attack at a resort hotel where people were relaxing just watching football. Sadly terrorists always pick on unarmed innocent citizens -- seems to be the way they play.Running news -- David Rudisha was back to his winning ways despite starting his comeback form. Watch out in Monaco on July 18th when he expects to be... Rudisha!Less than two weeks to the Hope & Possibility; the summer's favorite feel good run in Central Park. Sign up at wwww.nyrr.org - thanks!
06/14 MINI Marathon -- I watched the Mini Marathon this morning in Central Park. The park was very quiet, sad a world class road race like this does not attract more interest. Linet Masai gave a display of 'born to run' form with one of the longest strides in the biz. I only saw a couple of miles, but hear she finished third (fourth!) to the inform Ethiopian lady Damska and Molly Huddle. This is the first USA win in ages in an open race. In 2004 Deena won, but in that year no foreigners were invited to run as it was an Olympic promo for USA runners only.
It was funny, like setting the clock back 10-years and waking up to find you are still in the same place. The times were not Lornah/Paula-esque with 31:37 but it was nice and humid out there as NYC tends to be. Good to see Delilah, Diane from Burundi, Deena still out there, and also spotted was Mary Wittenberg, a leader of the Women's running, running the race too.
World Cup -- Can't understand why people are surprised that Holland are doing so well. They should have won the last world cup and will win this one. I do hope, for global development, that we get no repeat of the 201o Euro dominance. I don't see Brazil winning, and it would be great if an African nation could get in the last four. So far it is Holland/Germany 3-1, or 2-1 if the draw allows.
06/10 In transport... meanwhile Alfa Romeo have the greatest car race - you must go from one city to another and the winner is the one with the least fuel consumed. Save Fuel - there's a theme.
06/09 Wow, another time out. Distracted, lots and lots going on. Meanwhile we are doing a push for the Hope & Possibility 5M and I am glad to say we are nearing full capacity so please sign up quickly and support. Come run the month's most inspirational run in the city andf support the Achilles.
Lots of stuff going on with the hospital... more.
05/25 Saw the results of the world relays - pretty sad that just four teams entered for the women's 4 x 1500. Great running by the Kenyans to dominate and win in a new world record. No surprise Kenya also won the men's 800m... I think if there is any future in this event there has to be better marketing else it will die out. Two teams in next year?In the running news another resident of Iten returns to winning ways - Mary Keitany, winnning in a Canadian 10k. Will we see her in NYC in the fall?
05/24 Used to be running with the Born to Run, then it was Running with the Kenyans, and now it is Running with the Chinese! Thanks to Jim for the link [link] Nice pictures taken by the High Altitude camp go to www.lornah.com to get your booking.
No food reviews someone asked - geez, correct. These days I can't keep up - but went to Vabene on Second Ave 82nd ST - my comment here was 'when you say the meal comes with Roasted potatoes and you serve just one please change the wording of your menu. I did get four carrots, mini ones the size of a thumbnail!
Speaking of which I got a salad the other day at Park Central (another meeting lunch) and literally they served four slices of chicken on 7 leaves of lettuce with mayonnaise smeared over the top. I think I could become a chef!
Planning the next Hope and Possibility, that is June 29th and SAVE the date also for a Summer's Night 5k - Wednesday 10th Sept at 7pm and enjoy a drink overlooking he Hudson afterwards! It is going to be great - Riverside Park, Manhattan. 09/10/2014 - the 4th Annual Shoe4Africa 5k05/19
Sad video showing the sorry state of some Kenyan athletes. Sad also for me as I tried to help one of these guys, but it did not work out. Also sad that this is a recent video, but since the footage came out I hear that Sammy Chepkok "digger" has died. [link].
Tomorrow I will post a picture of happier times when Kwambai and Chepkok were at the top of their game.
Glad to hear that Paula Radcliffe will run the London Marathon next year - the greatest. A woman way ahead of her time!Met with Don Favre who used to come to the track. His friend Ron Greve raised $1,000 for Shoe4Africa; what a nice guy! He was impressed at our operations. Plus he raised some more for us earlier too! Looks like another toilet project.
05/15 Have a vision, and I act upon it.
I see NYC is considering the 2024 bid for the Olympics - and why not? I would start a group called the fifth circle, I would hire people of vision, I would watch the 2012 London bid and boom, there's the secret.
Talking of big boom's a big congrats to Jim Wilkinson who has graduated to the globe's #1 company right now, bigger than a facebook, bigger than google and ebay and all the rest - Alibaba. Congrats to Jim who is a Shoe4Africa board member. [link]Talking to Boston Marathon winner Wesley Korir who is in training fro a marathon in ten days - we are both looking to improve the same area and looking to athletics as this area is the hot bed of distance running. And a way to get education and a career.Little facts - walked past Odetta's house today in Harlem...
05/13 One of Kenya's major stories was he Lunatic Express. A railway that ran from Mombasa to Uganda. I will second the lunatic part having ran from Mombasa to Kilimanjaro (and jumping over train tracks). Well the Chinese have launched a massive rebuild - Boom - Lunatic Express rebirth. Looks like a great project.Every day is different at Shoe4Africa - today one kind soul offered me office space, and a mass of it too in an old 1928 Shoe factory - how fitting that would have been and it is a massive 170,000 Sq foot. Thanks Steve! More news on the link