Category Archives: Activities

Sustainable Youth Initiative Feb 2016 – The Montage

We hope everyone had as much fun attending as we did organizing, and we had A LOT of fun Organizing!

Why I’ll never run the Mallnitz Marathon again

A dear friend told me, you haven’t lived till you’ve run a race in Europe.

Ok, maybe those weren’t her EXACT words, but the meaning was there. So on a recent trip to Austria, I searched to see if I could make any races in the area, and to my luck, I found one!

Now, you need to understand the serendipitousness of this endeavor – initially we were staying in Vienna for the majority of our stay, we chose to go to Salzbury as well and booked a lovely bed & breakfast there through Airbnb (here is the link to the place, it was amazing, the owner is very sweet and also a runner! which came in handy, as you’ll see later in the story). We had originally booked 22-24, I later found the race would be on the 25th, we would have returned to Vienna. A quick calculation of train routes etc. showed that I could get to this Mallnitz location by taking a train for 3hrs45mins!

Through sheer coincidence, we discovered that Mallnitz happens to be closer to Salzburg than Vienna! 73KM vs 500+KM. As we would have a car then, it would be a short drive away. And the rest as they say, is history.

To get to Mallnitz, you drive 60KM to a train, then pay EU 17 to board your car on a train that goes through a mountain to Mallnitz.

Arriving in the small town, it was everything you would expect a small town to look like, the one main road was closed off for the race, everyone was dressed in running gear or traditional wear to celebrate this annual event. I ran to the information office which had a poster of the race outside to ask where it was, the office was closed, a passerby saw my plight and asked if I needed help then directed me to go straight 200M and i’ll find the start line.

Mallnitz Marathon 2015

(more pictures can be found here)

Everything about the location screamed “picturesque”, small town race with a big crowd. I found the registration office, and they knew who I was ahead of time as I had already registered online, plus was probably the only one from “abroad abroad” as in outside the EU. I paid them EUR 20, got my bib and race pack which consisted of one bottle of water, 2 energy bars, a Salmon tennis cap (blue) and a coupon for a meal after the race. Now, EUR 20 is around KD 7, remember that. It was the same amount for both the 10KM and the 21KM. I opted for the former as I had not been running long distance in quite some time.

As the runners started showing up, they herded us inside to give us a briefing regarding the race. I was the only one that sat till the end for a “refresher” in English, although I got the gist of what the Austrian dude was saying initially. Red ribbons for 10KM, purple for 21. I told them I was used to running and that I run in high temperatures, they said, almost nonchalantly, that that won’t help as here the thing is all about elevation. They also said if I wanted to give up I just had to run to someone and hand in my bib number to get a ride back to the start line. I dismissed that as poppy cock. Little did I know I was in for quite the rude awakening.

T-20 minutes till the race.

Preparing for the Mallnitz Marathon

(me mumsy tells me my face looked very tired, but I wasn’t feeling it at the time)

The whistle blew, and the runners were off, GPS synced and ready. We ran about 500M on road then veered into the forest, initially I was thinking, ok, this is doable. However the minute you got used to the terrain of grass, it suddenly shifted and became gravel, rock, mud, river etc. throughout the course of the run.

Believe it or not, Longshanks came in 2nd

Believe it or not, Longshanks came in 2nd

My first surprise came when we passed through a meadow and I saw the largest black horse my eyes ever did fall upon. It was so gargantuan (especially next to the beige pony that grazed beside it) that I almost believed it to be a statue. That belief was shattered when I ran by it, only to have it turn its head towards me. Luckily I was not bitten.

The next shock came at the uphill that was mentioned during orientation. Initially he had said the elevation was “only 300M”, little did my feeble mind fail to comprehend the gravity of a 300M incline,, at an angle of almost 35*. I felt akin to a mountain goat, running on my tip-toes and much below my average speed to go up the harrowing hill.

Physics has taught us that what goes up must come down, well that theory is also true for what curves up, it must also curve down later, and just before you cheer at the downhill speed gain, keep in mind I was wearing the same shoes I run in in Kuwait, showing signs of wear and tear, smoother on the bottom. That, coupled with grass, and the fact that it was starting to rain so the ground was moist made the steep run down quite precarious, one wrong step and you would slip and fall flat on your face. Fortunately that did not happen.

After being passed by several runners more adept at mountain trekking than I, I decided mentally not to allow anyone else to pass. As always, there was one person hot on my trails, and as chose to forgo my earphones so as to be “in tune” with nature during my first forest run, I could always hear them behind me.

We came across a padlocked gate that fortunately had a volunteer standing by it to open it for the runners. It swung outward, away from the runners. Which was good. And not so good, as you will find out later.

Around the 6.5KM I almost took a wrong turn and was alerted by my pursuer, in sign language. I lost a few seconds in which he had caught up to me, but quickly managed to retain my place ahead of him. This game of cat and mouse carried on for several KM’s, with me begrudgingly deciding to just let him go and focus on finishing the race and not falling down and breaking my leg. However my inner competitor always roared in righteous indignation to allowing someone to pass me.

Another few meters, and we were faced with another padlocked gate, with no volunteer in sight. I stuck my hands out and pushed through, the door swinging forward before me. More uphills and downhills, and a pile of fresh manure followed (for the sake of this recollection, we shall say I ran over it).

Nearing the 8KM mark there was another gate, I sped up just before it so as to push through with authority and was surprised when I ended up crashing into it as it refused to budge! My competitor had caught up, and it took us a few seconds to realize that this gate swung “inward”, as in towards the runners, meaning you had to come to a complete stop to open the gate!

I was irate, at this point, my nemesis had caught up and taken the lead, and again, part of me wanted to relinquish the pursuit and just focus on finishing the race. However my inner demon refused to lose the lead we held for 8.5KM straight, and dug deep to find the strength to surpass him once more.

A very sharp right turn later, we were back in civilization, on paved road. It was only a matter of a few meters until we reached the finish line, and nothing can compare to the joy of hearing your name and country of origin spoken by a stranger to a standing ovation by a group of strangers.

at the finish line of the mallnitz marathon

In hindsight, the true beauty of the course could only be realized when you combine the actual task of running it, over hills and bridges, rivers and open fields, gravel and grass, with the aerial shot provided by GPS:

The Mallnitz Race

In addition, a review of their results posted online shows that I came in 7th place, which is not too shabby for my first forest run:

Lord Aymz at Mallnitz

However, the reasons I would never run the Mallnitz marathon again is as follows:

1) Despite the registration amount, which was the same for 10 & 21KM, there was no medal for finishers, only first place. Given that the amount is exactly similar to what we pay here for 10KM (642marathon) I felt cheated in that I had no metal to show for it, only the bib.

2) The fiasco with the gates was quite tiring indeed, to have to come to a full complete stop in order to open a gate towards you whilst running is pure idiocy.

3) The people of Mallnitz, although extremely welcoming of me as a participating runner, were very speculative of my wife who accompanied me and were caught staring at her, a lot, due to her being veiled.

The only way I would actually re-run the Mallnitz 10KM run is if they did what all other races do and offered a finishers medal to make the moment more memorable.

The meal at the end of the run was a plate of pasta, with cheese sauce and meatballs.

I had two plates, I was very hungry.

Beef, not pork.

Kuwait Race Calendar Clash Feb 7, 2015 @extremesportskw @q8sportevents @forwardinspire

The Desert Oasis of the Gulf Region is having a Conundrum in February, which race to opt for?

In spite having extremely minimal running events all year round, the running community’s pleas for more running events continue to fall on deaf ears. Not only that, two major races are slated for the same exact day.

On the one side, you have the LGF Desert Run:

NRB

 

When: February 7th, 2015

Where: Northern desert of Kuwait, Parallel to Road 80.

Distance: 5KM & 10KM

How much: 8KD & 16KD respectively

Any goodies: Yes, the usual:

1) Medal,  2) T Shirt,  3)  Forward Initiative Customized Wrist Band 4) Runners’ Water Bottle  5) Forward’s Branded Drawstring Bag 6) Finish Time Result posted online (Only for the 10K Participants)

Previous experience: Generally Negative, read our review of their last race in Feb 2014 (link)

On the other side, we have Pro-Vision’s North Face Challenge:

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When: February 7th, 2015

Where: Mutla, Desert

Distance: 17KM

How much: 25KD

Any goodies: Not mentioned, assume it’s:

1) Medal,  2) T Shirt (based on friend’s experiences)

Previous experience: Personally, Generally  Positive, based on our 642 Marathon experience (link)

However, friends that had attended previous versions of the NFC have cited that the organizing was not up to par, as well as the giveaways being too frugal in light of the registration fee.

For both, I believe the amount being requested is excessive. Unlike races in the city, races in the desert require less Police Supervision thereby lowering the cost borne by the organizer. Charging the runners this much for a race is excessive, especially since no extra added precautions are required when running in the desert in terms of cordoning off part of a busy road.

Second, it is extremely laughable to have two races slated for the same date, almost as if the Monday Night Wars of Wrestling are returning with two different companies opting to see who is “Better” and can garner more runners, and the only loser is the latter who has to choose between one or the other, forsaking one medal from the collection they are accumulating.

(In the interest of fairness, LGF did call the date first, as their races were scheduled from 2014, the NFC run was slated for 31-Jan-15 initially).

As a matter of principle, the final winner at these events should be the participants, not the organizers who seek to line their pockets with cash only.

Again, we cite the amazing experience had by all at the RunQ8 event (link), in addition to giveaways from the sponsors that left everyone feeling content that they had gotten their moneys worth, which in the end was paid to charity, so you got both spiritual and physical benefits.

Both the races above have sponsors, and are in fact benefiting from them immensely, so what is effectively happening here is that the race organizer gets money from both the sponsors and the runners, the sponsors seek to recoup their losses and so they charge for everything given to the runner, meaning that the runner ends up paying double.

Considerations should be made for the races and the charges, to ensure that the residents in Kuwait fulfill their running appetite and do not end up seeking sustenance outside.

Representing @RunQ8Official in Bahrain!

Make no mistake – runners know how to have fun, whenever, wherever!
A recent business trip to Bahrain – the growing country made me decide to have an impromptu run dressed in my favorite running garb.
This past weekend the Q8FootSoldiers left our mark on Bahrain, running from Exhibition St. (Holiday Inn Express) all the way to the Bahrain Fort (and subsequently staging a hostile running takeover)!

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this one is for you RunQ8!

Initially, I had planned to run around the whole country (which is put at around 55KM, just in excess of a marathon). However, this plan never made it to fruition as I was later informed that Bahrain was not an island as I previously understood, but a series of interconnected islands via highways. However, having run the length of the Gulf Road in Kuwait numerous times, I believed myself to be no stranger to a little highway excursion.

How wrong I was.

At first I planned my trip meticulously – I used Google maps to estimate the walking distance from my hotel to the Fort. It was placed at 9.1KM i.e. a 45 moderate paced run for me. I used the GPS on my S3 on my arm to track my run via Nike+Running and followed the Google Maps route on my Xperia Z2 in my hand (as I was running without 3G, I had to stick to the plan or risk getting lost in the streets of Bahrain).

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The route as proposed by Google Maps

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The final route + several wrong turns

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a slightly larger map for scale to show the Coast-to-Coast run

The first 3K of the run were very entertaining, Google Maps had plotted an interesting route that took me through residential areas and made me see things I otherwise would not have seen had I not decided to run. Old busy streets and cobbled roads with people walking in every direction forcing me to have to dart amongst them to navigate safely.

It was when I turned onto the King Faisal Expressway (I think) that I had my first detour, despite Google asking me to go straight down, I was unable to comply due to the presence of a military checkpoint (and not a soul in sight other than military personnel). I thought, I can navigate around them, and ran through the market on the left side amongst giant 18 wheelers carrying produce for said market. Most of it stank to high heaven, including the fish market and a few bins full of rotting food.

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sunset at the Fort

When I saw that there was no way around the military, I decided to ask them what to do/ where to go. The lone military personnel available, at the sight of me approaching, reached for his rifle and stood to his full height, dwarfing me before him. He did not speak Arabic, or English for that matter, and I had the hardest time asking him how do I get to the fort, which he heard as palace.
I ran back down the side of the road again and towards a pedestrian bridge, crossing it to run along the other side, then joining onto the King Faisal Express on the right shoulder in the emergency lane. Google maps, despite the absence of a connection, continued to show me as a dot moving towards the destination, with a nifty count-down timer for distance. (people really should make an app that guides you to a run depending on your desired distance).
Again, I lost my bearing at the Ahli United Bank office and kept going back to my map and zooming out to find the blue road I was meant to be on.
Much of the land I was running on later was reclaimed land, as evidenced by the shells I found on the ground beneath me. Slowly but surely, I came to the Fort, finally!

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The Fort Has Fallen

The destination was definitely worth the journey, and in the end I had added an extra 3KM.

The run back was also an adventure, as I was short on fuel having only had breakfast in the early morning at the hotel and having decided to turn back at 5:00PM as the sun had begun its descent, the cold winds began to blow.

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The Bahrain Sky Line

All in all, it was a very rewarding experience to run bearing the crest of something that came from Kuwait. If only for next year we can get running shirts that clearly distinguish us as residents of Kuwait.

Maybe? Who knows 🙂

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Race day etiquette for Runners & Walkers

Race day is very important. Although running is a fun activity, several running enthusiasts spend the day before worrying about their carb intake, rest period and other such fascinating measures that affect performance on that fateful day.

Long ago, in April of 2012 (I have been writing for very long) I wrote an article entitled “Kuwait’s Guidelines for Proper Pedestrian Path Decorum” (link) where I tackled the issue most prevalent amongst the running community – sharing pedestrian paths with, pedestrians! Everything from smokers to toddlers and groups of little old ladies walking side by side were brought up with calls to people to refrain from treating the pedestrian path as their own personal space.

Today, this issue is even more relevant given the two races that took place LAST month in Kuwait (almost typed this month) – the 642 Marathon and the RunQ8 10KM run.

Different people have different goals. Congratulations on deciding to run/walk the full length of the 10KM course, it is a grand gesture of commitment and you should be very pleased with yourself. HOWEVER, please note the following:

1) DO NOT see this as an opportunity to walk side-by-side with all your friends, thereby constricting the pathway allocated to the race and causing returning runners to have to lose time in order to circumvent you. Their goal is to set a new personal record. Do not trivialize this by blocking the path.

2) DO NOT spit! I cannot emphasize enough how disgusting this is, especially when you are constantly surrounded by people. Yes, at times your throat is obstructed, and in those dire cases, please attempt to be civil and aim for an open drain/ green area. DO NOT just spit to your right/left paying no heed to the fact that at that precise moment someone could be coming up on your side.

3) DO NOT discard your used water bottles on the ground in front of you. Yes it is annoying that there are no trash cans, but please do not simply drop your water bottle on the road demarcated for everyone and proceed. It is an annoyance to avoid and can lead to serious injury especially if the water bottle was not empty/ properly closed leading to slippage. Try to throw the bottle away on the grass areas, and be rest assured that someone will clean it up as it is part of every race requirement to have a clean-up crew.

4) On the subject of water, please DO NOT throw water at other runners! This happened to me only once (last saturday at RunQ8) and left me pondering the reasoning behind a complete stranger throwing water as we passed each other on my run back towards the finish line.

5) DO NOT walk in groups larger than two people at a time side-by-side! This cannot be stressed enough as to how much of a hindrance it causes to other runners having to circumnavigate around you in order to continue on to the finish line.

6) High fives and attaboys to strangers are an amazing source of encouragement that should be made mandatory in every race. However, DO NOT put your weight behind your hand when high fiving, especially as a walker high fiving a runner. There is no need to “slap that” and make noise, especially as again, this causes runners to lose focus.

7) DO NOT stop to take pictures/ selfie’s whilst running, keep that for the finish line! Unless you check around you and make sure there are no oncoming runners you might be obstructing.

7) DO NOT raise your arms beside you when running. Using common sense, a runner/walker can feel when someone is coming up behind them, either through peripheral perception (which I talked about/ explained here), watching the ground for approaching shadows or simply hearing them pounding the pavement or gasping for breath. In either case, check around you before raising your arms, as you could find yourself inadvertently clotheslining a runner!

And that, dear all, is that.

Feel free to add anything I might have missed to this list.

Happy running!

The Review of @RunQ8Official 10KM run @q8sportevents

Alas, with yesterdays race now in the past, the Kuwait Sports Calendar for the running enthusiast has come to an end.

Thank you Fato for the lovely photo!

Thank you Fato for the lovely photo!

It is truly tragic that a country as rich as Kuwait hosts only two popular running events in any given year; the RunQ8 10KM charity run and the now slowly-gaining-momentum 642 Marathon.

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Whatever happened to Kuwait Charity Run (link)?

Alas, I digress.

Yesterday’s 10KM was a great, fun-filled event with plenty of give away’s (if only some organizers followed this example as opposed to hosting companies that charged 1KD per banana), friendly and familiar faces, high fives and attaboys to strangers and an overall sense of accomplishment and pride.

Q8FootSoldiers

Q8FootSoldiers

The race started off without a hitch on time, however, here are the points that should be taken into consideration next year:

1) 9AM was too late a time to start as on the run back to the finish line, the sun was burning down upon the contestants, searing skin and blurring vision. Such races should commence at 8AM.

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2) Pro-Vision, despite their best efforts to appear as a professional sports event time tracking company, continue to have issues that leave runners feeling annoyed and frustrated at the finish line. Case in point, despite crossing over the finish line within the first 45 minutes of the race, my bib number (200) failed to register on the results board, robbing me of the bragging rights to 2013 me that I set a new personal best for myself.

Further, the results page online did not have my results either, despite affirmation by the organizers that it would be so. I am also unable to pull out the certificate.

3) As what happens with most races, there was very little organization for the run back – the 5K return, where walkers and strollers were occupying 90% of the lane assigned to runners, forcing those on the return leg to have to maneuver between them and oncoming traffic. There should have been a clear demarcation to give those returning fair footing in a good space.

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4) The water stations at the 500M mark were distracting as one assumes water would be available at every KM, granted the walkers needed hydration at their turnaround of 2.5KM, however it should not have carried on to the 4KM point. There were even some stations were the water was merely placed on the sidewalk and runners had to bend down to pick them up themselves while propelling forward!

5) The final distance exceeded 10KM, which is good, as it did not fall short, however the actual distance should be informed by the organizers to the participants.

However, despite the aforementioned setbacks, the race was great overall with plenty of comradery at the finish line with new friendships forged after intense, grueling efforts put forward in finishing the 10KM run.

Plus, it is for charity.

Looking forward to the next RunQ8 charity run!

Any chance of making it a bi-annual affair? Pretty please? 😀

DSC_0741Extra: The Finish Line Fiasco

Finally happy that the organizers listened to my pleas from 2012 to pull up the finish line banner for all finishers, not just the top 3 or 10. However, I was unable to recreate the spontaneous image that has become my crowning running achievement – jumping over the finish line.

As I looked ahead I saw three runners ahead of me and the finish line being raised, I knew that short of having a rocket surgically implanted into my feet, I would never be able to cross ahead of them, so instead of the final dash for the finish line, I hung back waiting for the line to be raised once they crossed.

It was sadly not meant to be as the wind blew it down before I could jump over it.

Maybe next year…

The origin of “Running an Errand” in Kuwait

NOTE: for some unknown reason, this blog post was NEVER PUBLISHED due to inner errors with wordpress. Kindly go back in time to November 8th and read the following:

How many can claim to have a hobby that does all the following:
1) keeps them fit and healthy.
2) is done both in groups or solo.
3) can be done anytime, anywhere.
4) helps complete errands.

Show of hands.

that’s right. All runners.

This past saturday I had to take my car to the service center for the 40K service (expensive as hell but hopefully worth it). This seemingly simple errand irked me in a variety of ways. You see previously I would take my car to the service center during my lunch break as I worked in Shuwaikh and was within walking distance of the place. Since 2010 when I first purchased the car, I had been within walking distance of the center – serving in two different jobs btw (2010 – 2013, 2013-2014).

Anyhoo, as I now call Kuwait City my domicile for work, I had to go on a weekend. And early too, coz the service center gets packed pretty quickly.

How would I return from the SC? My first thought was I would not (pause for dramatic effect)…

In that I would spend the time around the place like at City Center or something. But, they opened at 9, I was there at 7:45AM and the kicker was the service was expected to last all the way till 4PM.

I called up a dear friend and asked her, say, want to run in the morning from Shuwaikh to Hawally?

She agreed!

Initially I had envisioned the run back to be a mere 6-7KM affair, tops.

As we are practicing for the 642 half marathon next saturday however, that would not slide with her, and she requested we push a little harder and opt for 13 miles.

I cannot say no to that!

So we started off at the service center, ran to the KPC building at the end of the Gulf road, and proceeded to run all the way down to the 3rd Ring Road including a refreshing run through the early morning sprinklers on the Gulf road as well as in insane run down the middle of the Gulf Road (sans the traffic ofcourse, we are not THAT crazy!)

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We called it quits 3KM out from home and enjoyed a brisk walk. By the time I got home it was 10AM, and I was waiting car-less till 4 apparently.

I got the call at 1:30PM that my car was ready, initially I had planned to take my bike there, but as I thought about it, running was so much less of a hassle! So again, I donned a different pair of shoes and went at it:

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The exact distance from my house to the SC was 10KM.

And that is the exact definition of “Running an errand” and the origin of the phrase 😀

(This can work as a preparatory run for RunQ8 this Saturday too! Sans the dates of course)

RunQ8 is on 29.11.14 – are you Game?

It is almost that time of year again, where the Gulf Road shall be cordoned off from Marina till the 3rd Ring Road, and the raging runners shall take to the streets once more, but not for profit of sports organizations, but the benefit of charitable ones.

RunQ8 was the birthplace of my passion to run in Kuwait, way back in 2010 when the race started at the Scientific Center. 4 years down the line, the race has moved up to Marina and up the ranks of Kuwait’s most anticipated sports events. Think Sports Day in school, but instead of sitting in the stands (lol) you’re hitting the ground running, with strangers cheering you on.

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From the horses mouth:

Join RunQ8, where all run proceeds go directly to treat children with disabilities. Our RunQ8 Runners/Joggers/ Walkers made it possible for The Children’s Evaluation and Rehabilitation Center to treat children for free. All race registration fees go directly into the Center, not to any commercial entity. Please tell all your friends, if there is one race to run, its RunQ8, where they can have a fun day out, raise awareness about disabled children in need, and directly contribute to the care and well-being of these children just by registering to run. Make your registration fee and your run (or jog, or walk) count towards improving a child’s life. Bring your family for a fun morning in our race village and support our runners.

The Children’s Evaluation and Rehabilitation Center is not business-as-usual, but is a non-profit working to improve access to quality healthcare for vulnerable children. The children we treat cannot get specialized pediatric care elsewhere. We work with community partners to make this possible, and our RunQ8 participants make a big contribution each year.

#642Marathon Review @extremesportskw @q8sportevents

Yesterday marked the first Marathon to be run officially (or unofficially) in Kuwait, and by god it was a game changer.

From the beginning, the 642 Marathon was the first to offer distances to suit everyone’s running appetite, with 5, 10, half and full marathon runs, everyone was bound to find a distance suitable to them.

It served as a refreshing change to start form Souq Sharq, as opposed to all the other races starting in Salmiya; mainly Marina Mall, although there was that one time RunQ8 had their inaugural first 10K in 2010 from the scientific center.

I had signed up for the half marathon, my wife for the 5K, and several friends for the 42.

There in lay the problem; the 42, the supposed crowning achievement of the 642 marathon, was a debauchery from the get-go.

Initially slated for the runners to begin at 7:30AM for the marathon and 8:30AM for all the rest, the marathon was delayed to start with all the others. This caused a problem in the space-time continuum in that a 5K takes an average of 30 mins, a 10K takes 60, a 21K takes 2 hours and a 42K takes 4hours, meaning the marathon folks would be running until 12:30PM, when the sun is at its highest point and the heat unbearable, even in these calming winter days. Also, the winners of the previous races would have to wait for the marathons to complete for the awards ceremony to take place.

Second, the organizers did an amazing thing in closing off the entire road side, as opposed to a single lane, for the runners to run in. This should have been utilized to its full potential by having people use all three lanes to separate the to and fro runners groups. This was not done and caused a problem initially at the first turn around from Mubarakiya onward and then the turnaround where the runners were put back on the Gulf road.

Third, as everyone is embracing the growing trend of tracking their runs to become more efficient, everyone is using GPS. GPS requires clear view of the sky to work properly. The run inside Mubarakiya albeit a lot fun, was a dead zone for GPS and several watches, phones etc. lost signal, throwing all runners paces off.

Fourth, the loop arounds that the marathon runners had to do were extremely boring and lacked what every marathon should contain, engaging scenery and a one shot activity with minimal turn arounds.

Feast your eyes on the Dubai Marathon map for 2014:

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The 642 marathon had the runners doing a loop at 12KM (with the 21) then again near the start, then again at chilis (like rats in a maze) to finally run back to the finish line.

Fifth, the sharp turn at the top of the bridge. The finish line should have been placed in front of Souq Sharq, to make the final dash towards the finish line a straight line.

Sixth, no energy gels were provided before the 12K mark.

Seventh, the roads were opened to cars at the second ring road at 11:30AM with runners still on them.

And finally, as a person that was injured and bleeding through my shoes at the finish line, I found the medical preparedness of the volunteers to be thoroughly lacking as I had to walk back and forth from the finish line to the registration tent and back before someone came and provided me with band aids.

Other than that, the race was perfect. The availability of water and sports drinks for runners was spot on, the booths were all very helpful and the overall atmosphere was encompassing of the bond between sports-folks, that of congratulatory admiration. Many a hi-5 and thumbs up were shared between crossing runners, proof that we may be competing on the asphalt, but we are all united in our quest for better health and wellness.

Definitely looking forward to the next 642 sponsored run, in hopes that they will take the constructive criticism provided by the runners into consideration.

The Month of Much Exercise in Kuwait

The chilling breeze of the Winter months is finally upon us! We shall soon discard the fluorescent shorts and tank tops in favor of long sleeved thermals and beanies.

Next month Kuwait will host two running events; the 642 Marathon (link) with distances of 5, 10, 21 & 42KM. In its first year as a new race in Kuwait, we have high hopes for our first ever Marathon in the streets! The second time-honored and traditional event is of course none other than the FSRI RunQ8 (link), a 10K run that is all about charity.

If you have not registered for these awesome events, do so NOW!

Also, be sure to join the Q8FootSoldiers for our bi-weekly training sessions for the upcoming races! The timetable is:

Tuesdays @ 8PM at Mishref Track.

Fridays @ 7AM at Marina Crescent, by the fountain near pizza express.

For those that wonder, “Why so early?!” on a Friday, it is simple:

“When you run in the morning, you gain time. It’s like stretching 24 hours into 25. You may need to sleep less and get up earlier, but if you can get by that, running early seems to expand the day.” – Fred Lebow.

Like our Page on Facebook (link) and get started on your running resolution NOW!

See you there.

the-more-i-run

 

August 2011 ( View complete archive page )

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