Olympic athlete Charlie Grice is hard training in Kenya, but he has managed to get some 3G to send us an update.
As I said in my last blog that I will be blogging from Kenya, well here I am! I am now in my last week of the camp that has been 4 weeks long and I am loving every minute of it. I came to Kenya not really knowing what to expect. I am staying in Iten which is 40 minutes away from Eldoret. It is very poor, but the place I am staying in is like a bubble compared to the rest of Kenya (the camp is very secure and many international athletes come and stay). The camp is owned by Lornah Kiplagat who is a former World Champion for marathons. Lornah’s husband and her have built a great training facility, there is accommodation for around 40 people in lodges and there are 2 main dining areas as well as a big gym which is very well equipped. UK Athletics have taken out 20 athletes and 5 staff, including 2 physios, 2 coaches and 1 physiologist, there were 2 departure dates; I was on the first flight. I spent the first 2 weeks with my own room, which was good but it did get a bit boring and I am now sharing with James Shane, who I am getting along with really well. He won the national senior champs this year, so it is good to do some training with him.
For the first week we all just did easy running and no sessions because we had to acclimatise to the altitude. We got weighed everyday to check we weren’t losing too much weight and we also got our blood saturation levels to see how much oxygen is in our blood. A typical day consists of waking up at 7am, meeting for a run at 7:30 and then another run at 5pm. In the middle of the day I would either do weights/stretch/college work and sleep! If I am doing a session I will have breakfast at 7:30 before running at 9am. There is a big emphasis on training and resting which is ideal for running. Everyone has their own individual schedule which they are running to, but all our easy/steady running are done together as there is a group ethos to the camp. It’s great meeting new people and running with them, especially learning off them as there are some top quality athletes here. Before I came I only knew a couple of people and now I have made lots of new friends. There are lots of good trails on our doorstep which make good running. There are also lots of winding hills which makes running tough, especially as there is less oxygen up here at 2400m above sea level.
The weather here has been a bit disappointing. It has rained quite a bit in the evenings especially. This is very unusual for this time of year and it makes the running on the trails very difficult because they become very muddy and slippery. I feel I have benefited a lot from being out here, as there are no distractions the focus is completely on training, eating the right things and looking after your body. I go to the gym and I see about 10 international athletes all working out hard, it is motivating.
I had my birthday on the 7th November which was pretty weird but I enjoyed it! I was pretty chuffed as the guys had bought me a card and the chefs made me a big cake in the evening and it was a bit different to a normal evening meal! The lifestyle here is pretty tough, the food is very healthy and there isn’t much to do here so some people get restless.
I am starting to feel very fit compared to when I arrived here. When I run it feels easier and I am very much looking forward to racing when I get back, as I am told it will feel a lot easier. I am racing a cross country in Liverpool 3 days after I get back, so I am hoping that I will put in a good performance there.
Bye for now