Seriously!!! I actually ran with a true Kenyan tonight, it made my day! It was totally unexpected and really fun. I felt like I met a celebrity!
I went to the high school track after work tonight to run some mile repeats knowing I would be tired from the race this weekend, but needing the training. When I got there, a man and a woman were already running while their three children played. As soon as I got on the track, they were very friendly and started talking and introduced themselves as Jef and Clarice. He offered to run a couple repeats with me after I warmed up and I said I knew I couldn't run his pace. I had already seen him running extremely fast and after I asked about his work out, he told me he was running 800's at a 2:20 pace. Wow! But he said he would help me hit my goal pace.
Well, I warmed up for a mile and ran my first repeat at a slow 7:13, but knew I was tired from racing. He came along during my recovery lap and we started talking. That's when I found out he was from Kenya! Of course I was "star struck" ---ha!!! He quickly added, "a slow Kenyan." Yeah right, there is no such thing! Anyway, from there he ran my next repeat with me and it really helped me. We ran a 6:41 pace for that mile as I gasped for life on his heels! He told me to stay on his heels and was very encouraging the whole time, he would point backwards at his heels if he could tell I wasn't quite there. That makes me laugh, but it really worked! The last lap he had me lead the way which also helped. And he would say "now pick your knees up and pump your arms" when I was getting tired. It was like having my own personal trainer for running and what a difference it made! After recovery, we ran another one at 6:50 pace, he slowed it down for me! Of course they were both simply cool down miles for him, I'm sure.
After Clarice and Jef and their children headed home, I recovered from that fast mile and tried another to see if I had anything left. Nope! It was a slow 7:26! But what a great work out for speed and one that I will always remember! I ran with a KENYAN!!!!!