Download PDF Running with the Kenyans: Discovering the Secrets of the Fastest People on Earth Author Adharanand Finn – serv3.3pub.co.uk

Download PDF  Running with the Kenyans: Discovering the Secrets of the Fastest People on Earth Author Adharanand Finn – serv3.3pub.co.uk [Ebook] ➡ Running with the Kenyans: Discovering the Secrets of the Fastest People on Earth By Adharanand Finn – Serv3.3pub.co.uk OneRunning in the Northamptonshire County Championships Were running across long wavy grass racing for the first corner Im right at the front being pushed on by the charge of legs all around me the ui OneRunning in the the Kenyans: PDF/EPUB À Northamptonshire County Championships Were running across long wavy grass racing for the first corner Im right at the front being pushed on by the charge of legs all around me the uick breathing of my schoolmates We run under the goalposts and swing down close beside the stone wall along the far edge of the field Its uieter now I look around One other boy is just behind me but the others have all dropped back Up ahead I can see the fluttering Running with PDF/EPUB or tape marking the next corner I run on the cold air in my lungs the tall poplar trees shivering above my headWe go out of the school grounds along a gravel path that is normally out of bounds My feet crunch along the only sound An old man pushing a bicycle stands to one side as I go by I with the Kenyans: Discovering the PDF/EPUB ² follow the tape back down a steep slope on to the playing fields back to the finish I get there long before anyone else and stand waiting with the Kenyans: Kindle Ö in the cold as the other runners come in collapsing one after the other across the line I watch them rolling on their backs kneeling on the ground their faces red I feel strangely elated Its the first PE class in my new school and weve all been sent out on a cross country run Ive never tried running farther than the length of a football field before so Im surprised by how easy I find itHes not even breathing hard the teacher says holding me up with the Kenyans: Discovering the PDF/EPUB ² as an example to the others He tells me to put my hands under my armpits to keep them warm as the other children continue to trail inN MA few years later at age twelve I break the meters school record on sports day despite a few of the other boys attempting to bundle me over at the start in an effort to help their friend win Five minutes later I run the meters and win that too When we get home my dad sensing some potential talent suggests that I join the local running club and looks up the number in the telephone directory I hear him talking to someone on the phone asking directions From that point on a course is set I am to be a runnerIt all begins rather inauspiciously one night a few weeks later I put on my shorts and tracksuit and walk across the bridge to the shopping mall next to our suburban housing estate in Northampton England a town of people sixty five miles north of London The precinct is half deserted save for a few late shoppers coming out of the giant Tesco supermarket I head down the escalator to the car park and then across the road to the unmarked dirt track where the Northampton Phoenix running club meets Its a cold night and all the runners are crammed into a small doorway in the side of a huge redbrick wall Inside the corridor walls are painted bloodred and covered in lewd graffiti Down the hall are the changing rooms where men can be heard laughing loudly above the fizz of the showers I give my name to a lady sitting at a small tableRather than head out onto the track as I had imagined Im taken back across the road with a group of children my age to the shopping malls delivery area a stretch of covered road with shuttered loading bays all along one side The road itself is thick with discharged oil A man in tights and a yellow running jacket gets us to run from one side of the road to the other touching the curb each time Between each sprint he makes us do exercises such as push ups or jumping jacks I begin thinking as I lie back on the cold hard concrete ready to do some sit ups that Ive come to the wrong place This isnt running I had imagined groups of lithe athletes hurtling around a track My dad must have gotten confused and called the wrong clubN MIm so convinced this isnt the running club that I dont return for another year When I do they ask me if Id like to train in the tunnelwhich I take to mean the shopping mall loading baysor head out for a long run I opt for the long run and am directed over to a group of about forty people This islike it As we set off along the gravel pathways that wind around the council estates of east Northampton I feel for the first time the sensation of running in the middle of a group of people The easy flow of our legs moving below us the trees houses lakes floating by the people stepping aside letting us go Although most of the other runners are older and constantly making jokes as I drift uietly along I feel a vague sense of belongingI spend the next six years or so as a committed member of the club running track or cross country races most weekends and training at least twice a week Much of my formative years I spend out pounding the roads Even when I grow my hair long and start playing the guitar in a band I keep on training The other runners nickname me Bono One night when Im about eighteen I pass a bunch of my school friends coming back from the pub We are going at full pace in the last mile of a long run My school friends stare at me open mouthed as I charge by one shouting incredulously What are you doing as I disappear into the distanceN MI first become aware of Kenyan runners sometime in the mid s around the time I join the running club They seem to emerge suddenly in large numbers into a running world dominated in my eyes by Britains Steve Cram and the Moroccan Said Aouita Im a big fan of both of these great rivals Cram with his high stepping majestic style and the smaller Aouita with his grimacing face and rocking shoulders who is brilliant at every distancefrom the short fast meters right up to the metersBut by the Olympics in Seoul it is all Kenyans winning every mens middle distance and long distance track gold medal except one What impresses me most about them is the way they run The conventional wisdom is that the most efficient method particularly in the longer distances is to run at an even pace and most races are run that way The Kenyans however take amaverick approach They are always surging ahead only to slow down suddenly or sprinting off at a crazy pace right from the start I love the way it befuddles the TV commentators who are constantly predicting that a Kenyan athlete is going too fast only to then see him go suddenly even fasterI remember watching the world championship meters final on a warm mid August evening in our living room in Northampton My mum keeps coming in and out suggesting I go and sit outside in the garden Its a lovely evening but Im glued to the TV The television cameras are focused on the prerace favorite the Olympic champion from Morocco Khalid Skah and also on a young Ethiopian named Haile Gebrselassie who won both the meters and the meters at the world junior championships the year before The athletes stand side by side at the start line looking back into the camera They smile nervously when their names are announced and give the odd directionless waveThe race sets off at a blistering pace with a succession of African athletes streaking ahead one after the other at the front Skah who has taken on and beaten the Kenyans many times before tracks their every move always sitting on the shoulder of the leader Britains only runner in the race Rob Denmark soon finds himself trailing far behindWith seven laps still to go the BBC television commentator Brendan Foster is feeling the strain just watching Its a vicious race out there he says Right on ueue a young Kenyan Ismael Kirui surges to the front and within a lap opens up a huge gap ofthan feet on everyone else Its a suicidal move Foster declares Hes only eighteen and has no real international experience I think hes got a little carried away I sit riveted screaming at the TV as the coverage cuts away to the javelin for a few moments When it switches back Kirui is still leading Lap after lap Skah and a group of three Ethiopians track him but they arent getting any closer The camera zooms in on Kiruis eyes staring ahead wild like a hunted animal as he keeps piling on the pace This is one savage race says FosterKirui is still clear as the bell sounds for the last lap Down the back straight he sprints for his life but the three Ethiopians are flying now closing the gap With just over meters left Kirui glances over his shoulder and sees the figure of Gebrselassie closing in on him For a brief second everything seems to stop This is the moment the kill is about to happen Startled frantic Kirui turns back toward the front and urges his exhausted body on again his tired legs somehow sprinting away down the finishing straight He crosses the line less than half a second ahead of Gebrselassie but he has done it He has won Battered and bewildered he sets off on his lap of honor the Kenyan flag once again held aloft in triumphThat evening I head down to the track for a training session with my running club I try to run like Kirui staring straight ahead going as fast as I can right from the start Its one of the best training sessions I ever have Usually if you run too hard at the beginning you worry about how youll feel later You can feel it in your body the anticipation of the pain to come Usually it makes you slow down Its called pacing yourself But that night I dont care I want to unshackle myself and run free like a KenyanN MThe night I spend hurtling wide eyed around the track after watching Ismael Kirui turns out to be one of the last sessions I ever have with my running club Just over a month later I pack my belongings into my parents car and drive up to Liverpool to begin college Although I join the college running team my focus on training is soon lost amid the whirlwind of university life Like most teenage students Im unleashed into a new world in which anything seems possible Running seems to belong in a previous life although I never completely let go of itThe extent to which my training peters out becomes clear by the time the British University cross country championships come around the following March The night before the race I take off on a spontaneous road trip to Wales with three friends clambering onto the team bus the next morning ready for little else other than sleep Its a miracle I make it at allA hundred miles away in the small northern town of Durham its a cold blustery day I lace up my spikes and go through the familiar routine of jogging and stretching but once the race starts my legs sucked down by the thick mud give up without a fight I jog around unable to rouse myself to run any faster I finish in th position My good friend and rival from my running days in Northampton Ciaran Maguire comes second Just a few years earlier we battled neck and neck all the way in the county cross country championships until he edged past me on the line to win And now here we are separated by almost three hundred people I see him after the race All you need is to give yourself one good year of training he says consolingly I nod but deep down I know it is not going to happenOver the years Ive met others like me former runners who still every now and then dig out their old sneakers and start lapping the local park in the vague hope of remembering what it felt like We sign up to a local K or half marathon determined to get back in shape But somethinglife an injury a lack of dedicationalways gets in the way and we stop training But the embers refuse to die and we refuse to chuck our moldy old sneakers away We know we might need them again that the urge to run will returnAfter I have children it becomes even harder to find the time to train that is until I manage to land a freelance job writing race reports for Runners World magazine Although it doesnt pay much it makes the running feel less self indulgent It isnt just me doing something for myself in an effort to revive some lost childhood fervor It is now workWith regular assignments from Runners World I start trainingfreuently over the next few years although with young children its still hard to get outthan twice a week I descend the stairs from my office to find Marietta with little Ossian hanging off her hip struggling to get lunch ready as my two daughters Lila and Uma are screeching at each other and tussling over a book The yard is overgrown the trash needs to be taken out and the phone is ringing Its not easy to say Im just popping out for a long run See you in an hour or so So even though I start racing regularly my times barely improve I run my first half marathon when Im twenty nine in hour minutes Seven years later Ive run threein exactly the same timeI keep telling myself that one day I will train hard and run really fast Im not sure what that would mean exactlyan under three hour marathon perhaps But the years are slipping away Every time an athlete over thirty five wins a big race on television I tell myself that there is still hope It isnt that I want to achieve any specific goal I just dont want to look back one day and regret that I never gave myself a decent chance to see what I could doAdvance praise for Running with the Kenyans Completely satisfying as well paced and exhilarating as a good run The Boston Globe Not everyone gets to heaven in their lifetime Adharanand Finn tried to run there and succeeded Running with the Kenyans is a great readBernd Heinrich author of Why We Run Part scientific study travel memoir and tale of self discovery Finns journey makes for a smart and entertaining read Publishers Weekly A hymn to the spirit to the heartbreaking beauty of tenacity to the joy of movement The Plain DealerEual parts cultural examination cult of running treatise and poignant memoir Running with the Kenyans thrives on a variety of levels Like the skilled distance runner he is Finn paces this book marvelously and then saves the best for the final kick This book packs all the pleasure and satisfactionand none of the ancillary painof a long training runL Jon Wertheim senior editor Sports Illustrated and co author of the New York Times bestseller Scorecasting Not everyone gets to heaven in their lifetime Finn tried to run there and succeeded Running with the Kenyans is a great readBernd Heinrich author of Why We RunIf you want to know the secrets of Kenyan runners and have a rollicking adventure along the way join Finn in his fascinating tale of what it is to go stride for stride with the fastest people on EarthNeal Bascomb author of The Perfect Mile An extremely good bookIf Born to Run taught us what to wear or not to wear when running Finns fascinating Running with the Kenyans teaches us how to run In the tradition of the best sports writing Finn embedded himself fully in his subject and reveals for the first time just how close we are to the holy grail of the sub two hour marathonRobin Harvie author of The Lure of Long Distances A beautiful and inspiring must have for every runner Running with the Kenyans isfarthan an inspirational story but a guide toward running humility and life from the amazing people of KenyaMichael Sandler author of Barefoot Running.

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