Hanging With The Iten Town Harriers

  • By Duncan Larkin
  • Published Mar. 29, 2011
  • Updated Mar. 29, 2011 at 5:57 AM UTC
Finn poses with the Iten Town Harriers. Photo: The Guardian

Adharanand Finn poses with the Iten Town Harriers. Photo: The Guardian

The group is preparing for the arduous Lewa Marathon.

For the past six months, Guardian correspondent Adharanand Finn has been on assignment covering Kenyan distance running. In his latest installment, he writes about his experiences running with a group he calls the “Iten Town Harriers.”

Finn has been preparing for the Lewa Marathon–a race Iten’s seasoned runners describe as “hard”. Finn notes that lions and cheetahs have been known to frequent the course. “To keep the wildlife at bay, the organizers send out helicopters to circle the route,” he writes.

In one of his workouts with the group, a “steady” 30K, Finn expects the he may only complete 20K of the run.

“It’s a beautiful morning as we turn off the road and head out through the lush patchwork of fields,” he writes. “The dirt road meanders gently through small homesteads, clusters of round mud huts dotting the landscape like huge kilns or chimneys for an network of underground houses.”

Finn ended up  quitting the workout at 15K, with the last 5K run under 20 minutes. “It’s not bad,” he recalls. “But I can’t help feeling I bailed out too early.”

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Duncan Larkin

Duncan Larkin

Duncan Larkin is the news editor at and a freelance journalist who’s been covering the sport of running for over five years. He’s run 2:32 in the marathon and won the Himalayan 100-Mile Stage Race in 2007. His first running book, RUN SIMPLE, was released last July.

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