Sijenje determined to conquer Stanchart Nairobi Marathon after winning men's 21km warm up race

Winner 21KM Peter Sijenje win Warm up race 3 at Karura Forest ahead of the 19th Edition of the Stanchart Nairobi Marathon 2022. October 8, 2022. [Jonah Onyango, Standard]

The urge to lose weight drove 26 year-old Peter Sijenje to embark on a journey to shed off excess fat that was interfering with his mobility a year ago.

The Information Technology expert found himself embracing athletics naturally in his work out journey to become fit.

His consistency has since started to pay off as Sijenje yesterday surprised himself when he cruised to the tape in 1:33:33 to lift the men's 21km category in the Standard Chartered Nairobi Marathon Third Warm-Up Race held at the Karura Forest in Kiambu County.

"A year ago I was fat, my body was in bad shape, this drove me mad, so I started running to become fit," Sijenje told Standard Sports.

"I'm glad I made the right decision, I'm now comfortable in my current shape. I'm not looking back," he underlined.

Sijenje feels he was naturally good in athletics before but had no courage to embrace the sport earlier.

"From my victory today, I feel like this might have been an inborn talent which I have been sitting on all these years.

"I'm happy that the potential has started to manifest, it's an indication of better days ahead for me," he said.

The Karura contest helped Sijenje to gauge his body ahead of the 19th edition of the Standard Chartered Nairobi Marathon that is set for Uhuru Gardens on October 30.

"Today's event was tough, but I'm glad to register my first ever victory since I started running a year ago.

"The terrain in Karura was perfectly challenging, it had tedious hilly sections which athletes struggled to conquer," he explained.

Ahead of the Karura showpiece, Sijenje who has been consistent with his long runs, said he repeated short sprints at the Public Service Club in Nairobi this week which was culminated by a 5km run on Friday to add stamina to his muscles.

"From this race, I have realised I need to work on my finishing kick, I was pretty fast in the first 15km but struggled in the last 6km," he stated.

It will not be the first time that Sijenje will be taking part in the Standard Chartered Nairobi Marathon as he took part in the 21km virtual contest last year, finishing second in the men's category.

"But it will be my first time to take part in the physical race and I'm going for the full marathon.

"I feel I have the power and the will to endure the 42km contest," he declared.

At the same time, Dennis Samoei from Nyahururu came first in the men's 10km category during the Karura warm up contest.

By AFP 53 mins ago
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