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Thursday, October 29, 2009

Catherine Ndereba talks about the Bupa Great South Run, her upcoming fall marathon and Ekiden in Japan

Today I spoke with Catherine from her training home in Norristown, PA  about the race she just returned from, the upcoming Yokohama Women's Marathon (November 15, 2009) and the 2009 Chiba International Ekiden (November 23, 2009)

Stefani: How did it go in Portsmouth? (at the Bupa Great South Run)
Catherine: Oh, it went great! It was tough though because of the wind; the wind was too much! I was like so much blown by it {laughs}. The first mile of the race and the last two miles, man, they were like, it was like climbing a hill, and I wasn’t climbing a hill!  Oh, my. By the time I was finished my shoulders were killing me because I was fighting the wind! {laughs} The rest of the days when we (she and manager, Lisa Buster) go there it was warm; warmer than here (Norristown, PA); Thursday, Friday, Saturday it rained, it wasn’t that windy but as it kept on raining it kept on getting windier and windier!
Even in the evening, after the race, when we tried to go out with Lisa around 4 or something, it was so windy I was telling her that I could go with my back looking front the wind was too much!

Stefani: So you were walking backwards?
Catherine: Yeah! It was that much windy!

Stefani: How do you respond when people ask why you didn't win; why you came in 5th?
Catherine: I ran a pace that was within my training schedule; I don't count it like I didn't do great. I am happy with myself and I just know that if it was a day with no wind in my face that I would have run within a good time bracket.

Stefani:  So you ran according to your training for the upcoming marathon.
Catherine: Yes, I started off and it was cold and I was wearing something underneath and I just needed to feel my way with the wind.

Stefani. So are you looking forward to Japan?
Catherine: I’m looking forward to Yokohama Marathon and to the Ekiden (2009 Chiba International Ekiden-November 23, 2009). The Ekiden is my favorite!

Stefani. Why is that?
Catherine: Because it’s FUN! It’s the only time you get to run a full marathon with other people!

Stefani. So you and your team members each run a leg of the race?
Catherine: Yes, It is a lot of fun!

S: The Yokohama Marathon it a Women’s marathon; is there a difference to you if you run a marathon with just women?

C: No, it doesn’t matter. It doesn’t matter but I think running a marathon with just women is unique. I think this is my second marathon that is women only and all other ones are with men too. It’s good though because in doing so the women get all the coverage.

S:  Are you referring to the press truck and how many races only show the men’s race?
C: Yes. This is good for women.

S:  I noticed in Philadelphia that when you and a group broke away from a pack of women that there were a few men that hung around and almost boxed you in; do you feel that in a women’s only race when you break away from the pack that there may be less people running close to you?

C: No, I don’t think about that. As long as someone is not stepping on you, it doesn’t matter if it’s a man or a woman!

S: How long will you be in Japan?
C: I’m going to be there I think for two weeks. I’m arriving on Tuesday the 10th and am not going home until the 24th.

S: Will Anthony (her husband) be there?
C: Anthony is arriving on the 13th.

S: Will he stay for the Ekiden?
C: No, it will be a very quick trip. He has school. He will miss Friday. He will leave on Thursday night and arrive on Friday and Monday he will leave again. I guess he’s gonna be in the air more than he’s gonna to be in Japan! {laughs}

S. You’re lucky you have such a good supporter!
C: Yes, I thank God for him!

S: Who else is going to Japan?
C: Lisa (Buster)and Mostafa (El Nechchaddi her coach)

S: When you get to Japan, how long will it take you to adjust to the time?
C: Uh, four days is enough. It takes me like a couple days. I don’t let it get to me too much. So when it’s like the morning there, I can make like it’s evening here when I go for my evening run..

S: So now that it’s getting colder here in Philadelphia, does it make you want to go home?

C: I can’t wait to get home! Today Linus (another Kenyan runner who trains in Norristown with Catherine) called me and he was home and I was feeling so happy for him that he was home and I was feeling like it was me that was back in Nairobi!

S: When is the last time you were home?
C: 9th of July. I feel like I’ve been here for a decade! {laughs}

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