Wed 26 Dec 2018 Nick Kershaw

Asante Sana, Kenya, For the Memories


This blog post was written by Leanne Turner, a 2018 Marathon participant.

This was my second visit to Kenya on a volunteering trip to support an amazing organisation, Five Talents, and my first trip with Impact Marathon. I was given the opportunity to attend the marathon with the support of Glorious Brands.

Nothing could have prepared me for the week ahead, the unmeasurable feeling of inspiration that was about to cast its spell on me in more ways than one.

Our first stop was the Maji Mazuri project in the Mathare Valley. Mathare Valley regularly makes the news for reports of violent gang-related crime. We learned that there’s a lot more to this community and the people that call it home, many of them just trying to better their lives. The Mathare Valley is the oldest and second largest shantytown in Kenya, after Kibera, also based in Nairobi.

The children here are raised in poor living conditions and value their right to an education. The Maji Mazuri project allows children to an education, which will give them the tools to change their lives in the future. 

I had the most memorable running experience of my life during this trip to Kenya training with elite Kenyan athletes. Its not by chance that the Kenyans are arguably the best runners in the world. They train, and they train hard! In high altitude and warm temperatures.

Under coach Gabriel’s lead, we embarked on one of the hardest training sessions of our lives! Interval training has nothing on this, think star jumps, 400 metres, 800 metres and sprint sessions…on REPEAT! Although it sounds like absolute torture, it was lots of fun. I felt honoured to be training among the best in the business, including the 2017 Dublin Marathon winner, Bernard Rotich who completed the 26.2miles in 2 hours 15 minutes!

Many of the athletes explained that running in Kenya to the younger generation is inspirational. It demonstrates to them that you don’t need money, or any material equipment to be successful, but you just use your body and train hard to become the best that you can be. Many children in rural communities run to school, run back for lunch, back to school and back home again, so from a young age running is something they’re familiar with.

Throughout the week we learned, we cried, we felt inspired, humbled, shocked, excited, tired, energised, and exhausted. You go through a roller-coaster of emotions whilst having so much fun along the way. All of this was just the lead-up to race day where the roller-coaster of emotions come back…apprehension, excitement, the ‘can I do this’ voice on one shoulder, and the ‘just have fun’ on the other shoulder. Impact Marathon do a fantastic job all week of making you realise that this isn’t in fact a race, it’s fun.

“You’re about to run a half marathon on a tea plantation in Kenya 2,000 metres above sea level, enjoy it.” – Nick Kershaw, Impact Marathon Founder. 

And that’s what we did.

We ran with the most motivational group of Kenyan athletes, took in some breathtaking views of the famous Rift Valley, climbed a total elevation of 500 metres and had lots of fun along the way. This really was a race like no other and an experience I’ll never forget. 

If you love to run, love to travel, and love to help, sign up now – you won’t be disappointed.

Asante Sana x

Find Leanne on Instagram or Facebook to see more about the 2018 Kenya Impact Marathon and follow her next journey.

Related posts


Tue 16 Apr 2024 Liza Kershaw

fundraising: london marathon to impact marathon


Tue 16 Apr 2024 Liza Kershaw

the power within


Mon 15 Apr 2024 Nick Kershaw

beyond the finish line: sustaining impact between marathon events


Tue 9 Apr 2024 Liza Kershaw

run alive: hear from an impact runner


Tue 26 Mar 2024 Liza Kershaw

inspired soles: Nick Kershaw | impact marathon founder


Tue 26 Mar 2024 Liza Kershaw

business of endurance: the transformative impact of community-driven marathon events


Tue 26 Mar 2024 Liza Kershaw

the running public: interview with founder, Nick Kershaw


Mon 18 Mar 2024 Nick Kershaw

impact stories: guatemala beyond the headlines


Mon 18 Mar 2024 Nick Kershaw

Introducing Global Impact Challenges: The Next Step in the Journey of Impact Marathon


Mon 26 Feb 2024 Liza Kershaw

impact stories: the power of unity


Thu 22 Feb 2024 Liza Kershaw

impact stories - desert to oasis: the greening the desert miracle


Tue 20 Feb 2024 Liza Kershaw

2025 Guatemala Impact Marathon: A Thoughtful Stride into the Future


Fri 16 Feb 2024 Liza Kershaw

impact stories: how to be powerful


Thu 1 Feb 2024 Nick Kershaw

Empowering Strides: Unveiling the World’s Most Powerful Races in 2024


Wed 27 Dec 2023 Nick Kershaw

Echoes of Impact: A Reflective Journey Through 2023's Races and Beyond


Thu 14 Dec 2023 Nick Kershaw

Petra Reimagined: A Testament to Resilience and Solidarity with Impact Marathon


Thu 7 Dec 2023 Nick Kershaw

Turn a desert green? That's Impossible!


Tue 24 Oct 2023 Liza Kershaw

PODCAST: The Crevasse


Mon 23 Oct 2023 Liza Kershaw

PODCAST: From Turning Points to Learning Points


Sat 21 Oct 2023 Liza Kershaw

PODCAST: How Just ONE Meeting Changes Everything


Fri 20 Oct 2023 Liza Kershaw

PODCAST: Starting from Zero in Kathmandu


Thu 19 Oct 2023 Liza Kershaw

PODCAST: The Unfolding Origin of Impact Marathons


Mon 16 Oct 2023 Nick Kershaw

A Bucket-List Marathon: Why Jordan Should Be Your Next Running Destination


Thu 12 Oct 2023 Nick Kershaw

5 Reasons the Nepal Impact Marathon Is More Than Just a Race


Tue 26 Sep 2023 Nick Kershaw

Regenerative Travel and the Nepal Impact Marathon: Running for a Better World


Mon 18 Sep 2023 Nick Kershaw

Why Guatemala Is the Perfect Adventure Destination for U.S. Trail Runners


Thu 7 Sep 2023 Nick Kershaw

Why Team Up For the Guatemala Impact Marathon?


Tue 5 Sep 2023 Nick Kershaw

Running with Purpose: The Synergistic Impact of SERES, Youth Leadership, and the Guatemala Impact Marathon


Thu 31 Aug 2023 Nick Kershaw

Adapting to Tropical Conditions: An Evidence-Based Approach to Training for International Marathons


Tue 29 Aug 2023 Nick Kershaw

A Beginner's Guide to International Marathons: Why Start with Guatemala


Thu 10 Aug 2023 Nick Kershaw

Running with purpose: the Jordan Impact Marathon partners with the Invictus Games Foundation


Fri 14 Jul 2023 Nick Kershaw

Lessons from Love Trails: Celebrating Obsession with Experience Creation in the World of Running Events


Fri 23 Jun 2023 Nick Kershaw

Exploring the Enchanting History of Antigua: Our Home for the 7th Guatemala Impact Marathon


Tue 20 Jun 2023 Nick Kershaw

Run the Extra Mile: Impact Marathons and the Journey to Social Change


Mon 19 Jun 2023 Nick Kershaw

Women on the start line: Integrating SheRaces into our Impact Marathons


Thu 25 May 2023 Dave Melody

Why Impact Marathons are changing the face of global charity events


Wed 18 Jan 2023 Nick Kershaw

ChatGPT wrote a poem about our run in Guatemala...


Wed 21 Jul 2021 Nick Kershaw

One goal to rule them all : A lesson learnt in our pursuit of The Global Goals


Tue 15 Jun 2021

Dropping pebbles, investing in yourself and making an impact


Fri 12 Feb 2021

Introducing: Impact Stories with Nick Kershaw


Fri 12 Feb 2021

Going Green in Malawi: An unexpected challenge


Fri 12 Feb 2021

Impact 101: Conversation with 'We Got The Runs' Podcast


Fri 27 Nov 2020

Ultimate Gift Guide for the Ethical Runner


Mon 2 Nov 2020

How do you create a new race route? Meet the Impact Pyramid


Thu 15 Oct 2020 Dave Melody

4 ways to maximise your impact (that don't involve any running)


Sun 27 Sep 2020

Green World Programme x Impact Marathon


Thu 6 Aug 2020

Impact in 2020: Step sideways, to leap forward


Wed 15 Jul 2020

RunTalkRun x Impact Marathons: Global running movements join forces


Tue 7 Jul 2020

How to be a change-maker - a conversation with the RunTalkRun podcast


Fri 3 Jul 2020

Coach Gabriel's winning culture: How Kenyan world records are made


Wed 17 Jun 2020

Silent Motivations - A conversation with the Evossi Explore Show


Mon 8 Jun 2020

What's in a medal? The story behind an Impact medal


Thu 20 Feb 2020

Guatemala Impact Marathon: From dream to reality


Sat 1 Feb 2020

Runners Recipes: Charlie Watson's Avocado Bread


Fri 31 Jan 2020

Impact Runner Stories: Kit Garnett @ Nepal Impact Marathon 2019


Tue 17 Dec 2019

Pablo: The main man of Guatemala Impact

Tue 29 Oct 2019

Kelsang: The unsung hero of Nepal Impact


Wed 2 Oct 2019

Team Impact: Through the eyes of an investor


Mon 9 Sep 2019 Nick Kershaw

It takes a village


Thu 29 Aug 2019

Meet the storytellers


Wed 14 Aug 2019

Why a flash storm in Kenya is exactly what your company needs to thrive


Wed 7 Aug 2019

Team Impact: Through the eyes of our volunteers


Tue 16 Jul 2019

Nepal Impact 2019 to be led by an all-female race director team


Tue 14 May 2019

Building resilience: Permaculture and sustainable development


Mon 4 Feb 2019

4 reasons to run up an active volcano


Tue 8 Jan 2019

MarathonTalk - Martin's trip to Kenya


Wed 26 Dec 2018

The best brands for ethical running gear


Wed 26 Dec 2018