Series01 Sep 2014

Work, rest and play – Stephen Kiprotich


Ugandan distance runner Stephen Kiprotich (© Getty Images)

World and Olympic marathon champion Stephen Kiprotich has proved to be the king of the road in recent times.

The Ugandan long-distance star will compete at this weekend’s Great North Run. Here he reveals what he is like at work, rest and play.

Stephen at work

What is your favourite type of training session?

Stephen Kiprotich: I like long runs, speed work and easy runs. During a competition, you need to have good speed, which allows you to make the right break and it helps you at the finish. I like the long runs as they help develop good endurance. The easy runs after a hard training session can help relax the body.

What is your least favourite training session?

SK: I like all training sessions.

Who is your favourite training partner?

SK: I have so many. I train with a group of about 20 athletes but one of my favourites is a guy called Philemon Rono (a 2:07 marathon runner).

What is your all-time favourite training venue?

SK: Eldoret in Kenya. I have trained there for the past seven years. When I train there I am fully focused on training.

What are your three favourite things about being an athlete?

SK: One, I love travelling from place to place. Two, I also like it that I am now a famous athlete. Three, I have an opportunity to change my family's life through running by creating better circumstances and conditions.

Stephen at rest

Where is your favourite place to relax?

SK: I like to stay in my home town of Kapchorwa in Uganda during my off-season. I like to spend time to relax there.

Describe your perfect non-training day.

SK: Sundays are often a non-training day for me and I like to spend it by assisting my friends on the land by keeping cattle and growing crops. I maybe work for one or two hours. It is hard work.

If you could pick one athlete from the world of track and field with whom to spend one day to relax, who would it be?

SK: I have four or five long-distance athletes I like to have fun with away from the track and one of these is Philemon Rono.

What is your favourite drink?

SK: Water and African tea.

What is your favourite music to relax to?

SK: Reggae, gospel and traditional Ugandan music.

Stephen at play

When did your passion for technology begin?

SK: I like to learn how computers work. If I had more time, this is something I'd like to do more. I also like looking on websites to research training tips and to get advice on nutrition.

What is your one item of technology you can’t leave behind?

SK: My phone because it is portable and easier for me to carry than a lap-top.

What are some of your favourite items of technology that you own?

SK: I have a phone, a Samsung Galaxy and a Toshiba laptop. The Samsung phone is my favourite as it is small and has all the features that a computer has.

What's the most expensive item of technology that you've ever bought?

SK: My Samsung S5 phone was £500 (about €630).

What are your favourite forms of social media?

SK: Facebook, Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp.

Steve Landells for the IAAF