Hark denizens, expats and locals! This blog is specifically for you! Kuwait's one-stop-shop for Intriguing titles that MEASURE up to the content. From social gatherings to local news, this blog has it all. The main aim of MyBloogle is to give you a good read, leave you with a smile, and hopefully have you tune in once again as a regular reader! Home to the Q8FootSoldiers running initiative in Kuwait!

Monthly Archives: March 2014

Why are Races important to Runners?

Given the latest fracas raised as a result of an improperly planned and executed race, a lot of runners, seasoned and new comers, are questioning the willingness to partake in such events that prove to be nothing more than huge disappointments.

However, the feeling of dismay should pass and not tarnish the essence of competitive running.

First and foremost, by competitive I mean against yourself. Running Saturday’s 10K, despite its several setbacks, proved beneficial in a myriad of ways. Most importantly it showed that as a runner I have progressed from my pace 2 years ago, at the RunQ8 2012 edition, where my 10K timing was 48 minutes (and the odd few seconds). Fastforward to 2014, and I find myself finishing the 10K in 46 minutes and 39 seconds. Progress!

Do not get me wrong; I run on a weekly basis, with variable distances, the shortest being 10K; it is only in a race environment that you truly find the drive to push yourself to beyond what you thought capable. And that is why races should never be forgone, for it gives you the opportunity to really test yourself.

Not only that, but the presence of several other sports enthusiasts around you serves as more motivation. There is nothing quite as exquisite as a thumbs up/ high five from a stranger. I had one person yell out “Way to go Lightning McQueen!” to which I replied, “FLASH!”, and that served to propel me forward. Finding yourself surrounded by others that have made the mental decision to drag themselves out of bed and put themselves through the grueling action of placing one foot infront of the other for a distance of 10,000 meters makes one feel right at home. Appreciated and understood.

One of my favorite race day games is called peripheral perception, whereby one uses their peripheral vision (looking out of the corner of your eye without turning your head) to spot hopeful over-takers. Once you see them (or hear them, breathing or slapping the pavement), all you need to do is put a little effort to get ahead, and keep doing so until you drain them. In any setting other than a race, this proves difficult, and that is why it is imperative to go for races.

However, that being said, race organizers are responsible for the well being of the runners. And that means not only replenishing their hydration levels, but also their nutrients.

Running is different from one person to the next; some can run long distances without need of nourishment, others require it on a regular basis, and the lack thereof can be dangerous.

Make no mistake, there is a huge difference between every day running and race-day running. Your personal best will always be set when surrounded by a crowd. And the sense of achievement of crossing the finish line is beyond description, well worth the pain.

Top 10 Shortcomings of Today’s 10K #LetsGoForward

The community of Kuwait is no stranger to running events; we are all familiar with the two main organizers – RunQ8 & the Kuwait Charity Run. Today’s race was sponsored by neither, and as such here are the top 10 shortcomings of the race:

1) Did not start on time.

We live in a desert country, the longer you wait to start a race the hotter it becomes, and the more dangerous for runners who are already sweating buckets and dehydrating.

2) No timer at the Finish line.

One of the most exhilarating feelings is to be running towards a finish line where you are guaranteed that your picture would be accompanied by your finish time. For your own reference. A minor detail but still quite important.

3) Inadequate placement of distance markers.

Its quite simple – you have a race compromised of 10 kilometers, it does not take a genius to guess that you should have a marker for every KM that passes, giving people an idea where they are in the race. The only markers available were at 1.5KM (the turnaround for the 3K runners) and the turnaround at the 5K mark.

4) Few and far between water stations.

There were only 3 water stations along the race. Personally, I do not drink whilst running, I was however in need of water to vent off the heat.

5) Understaffed Volunteers.

Lets say a group of 10 people are running together, in the heat, and are in need of refreshment. The water stations had only 2 volunteers. with 2 arms each, that is 4 bottles they can carry and give to runners. Meaning 6 runners would have to either wait in line or stop and get water themselves.

6) The Finish Line was not padded.

A minor detail, but still important.

7) T-shirts. Medal.

The top take-aways from any race are the T-shirt and the Medal. This race however, several people were disappointed that the t-shirts provided were not actual running t-shirts. The medal itself also looked quite disappointing, as was the ribbon to which it was connected.

8) No refreshments for runners

This was NOT a free run. A fee was paid to take part. Yet the only refreshments offered to runners were bottles of water – nothing to help regulate the loss of minerals from the body – no energy drinks, no fruits (bananas for example). Not even juice (which was later found to have been distributed TO the water stations) which brings us to …

9) Juice at the water stations

Guava, Orange & Cocktail. In a box, requiring a straw, being given to runners during a run.

10) Pay for everything.

The aforementioned organizers (RunQ8 and KuwaitCharityRun) provided the best after run refreshments EVER. Everything was FREE; goody-bags were given to help regulate the runners lost minerals containing juice and cookies, the plethora of sponsors were giving away free samples for the runners. This however was not the case today. What made it even worse was the fact that there was nothing given to the runners post-race to aid in recovery except water. Not even banana quarters (as mentioned earlier). There was one stall that had banana’s hanging as a display (which were quite raw), and they started selling them for one KD.. EACH!

It is a well understood fact that if you are organizing a run, you should go all the way and cater to the runners needs. It is not an event you use to draw cash from the runners who paid to participate as well as the sponsors who paid to have their stalls put up. The later were covering their costs by demanding payment from the former. (FYI The Kuwait Charity Run in 2012 had free pizza being made).

As far as races in Kuwait go, this was extremely disappointing as it seemed like nothing more than a reason to raise money for all sides and literally stick it to the participants.

Here is hoping that which ever race takes place next in Kuwait, the aforementioned points will be given proper consideration.

That being said, the volunteers were extremely helpful, and the overall ambiance created by runners was astounding. Kuwait needs more organized races, however the key word is ORGANIZED.

August 2011 ( View complete archive page )

September 2011 ( View complete archive page )

error: Sorry, Ctrl+C/V disabled; if you wish to use this content please contact us :)
%d bloggers like this: