News

Urban Swaras Starting Line Run 663 @ VMX Fitness, Village Market

Dear Swaras, 

Mountain to Mountain truly was an epic, ultra, extraordinary, and breathtaking run! We had runners from across the region completing distances from 25km to 80km, and everything in between. For roughly 14 hours the roads and trails between Mount Kenya and the Aberdares were awash with laughing Swaras (and guests), and support vehicles chugging up and down the roads, doling out melons, chapati, sodas, and encouragement. We had so many personal distance records (people who ran their longest distance ever) and we had people who ran even after doing Comrades last week, and people sprinting downhill after already having run 50km, and people arriving in the area at midnight and starting an ultra at 4.30am…basically, we had everything, and I think I’m safe in saying everyone loved it (well, most of it 😉 )

See the amazing photo highlights here: https://sway.office.com/5DAZFSBkVMMDkCUW?ref=Link

If you would still like to order a Mount Kenya Ultra t shirt or medal, please contact me before 5pm Tuesday 13th (Whatsapp +33615209676 or email clairesimonebaker@gmail.com).

Find below some thank yous we shared on the Whatsapp group that also deserve to be shared here:

On behalf of the club’s CRE and officials I’d like to take a moment to congratulate all the many wonderful runners who enjoyed and punished themselves on this year’s Mt Kenya Ultra- Mountain to Mountain edition. The trails were alive with encouragement, laughs, personal achievement, and the runner’s high. 

Special thank you to:

Our Mt Kenya locals who hosted us for a sumptuous mbuzi dinner, muratina (never seen such a big jerrycan) and a welcoming after party- Wachira Nderitu, Sam Ndungu, Leo Kareko, Anthony, Kiai, James Ndiang’ui, Esther Ndungu, and friend of the club Sam Mwangi. 

The extraordinary coordination efforts of Wachira Nderitu and James Wahome for planning the route, the logistics and the accommodation.

Wanjohi, of the Mt Kenya Blazers, for attending with a marvellous group of Blazers.

Ajaa Olubayi, the club’s Chairman, who supported the runners throughout, and coordinated the support vehicles.

Timothy Guoko who came with us for the sole purpose of supporting runners and making sure we never went hungry or thirsty. 

Our beloved Trail Fox, Benja Chikani, who marked, supported, and photographed the living daylights out of us! 

Our treasurer Davis Munene, who even though he wasn’t there, paid all the bills promptly so that we didn’t get held for ransom

Everyone else who was involved in any way, we thank you!! If I’ve missed your name it please let me know! 

Feel free to thank these individuals in person, they truly deserve it. 

Happy recovery, everyone. 

This week’s run: hosted by VMX Fitness, Village Market

This week we are being hosted by the state-of-the-art, sprawling VMX Fitness, on the third floor of Village Market. They are generously hosting us for breakfast, which will be FREE for members. Guests will still be required to pay the 500ksh guest fees. We will be joined by members of VMX Fitness, and we will be offering distances from 5km to 25km. Full info and link to register in the Starting Line: https://sway.office.com/5DAZFSBkVMMDkCUW?ref=Link

Naivasha Relay is around the corner

And then don’t forget, the Nairobi-Naivasha Relay is on the weekend of the 1st October! More info on registering for a team to come later this week. Before then we will be taking orders for NEW SWARA T SHIRTS so keep an eye out for that they will get snapped up quicker than you can run a mountain to mountain ultra!

#VMX+Swaras

News

Urban Swaras Starting Line run 662 @ Mount Kenya Ultra

This week is the much-anticipated Mount Kenya Ultra! We always ask but really do mean it: please avoid single-use plastic where possible. We are drastically reducing our use of single-use plastics, and appreciate your cooperation in this. Please bring a refillable bottle or hydration pack if you require water on the trail.

Date: Saturday 10th September, staggered flagging off. 80km: 4am from Naro Moru Gate, 50km 7am from Golden Gates Hotel, and 25km 8am from close to Golden Gates Hotel (drop-off by the club). All runners should be finished by nightfall, for their safety.

Venue: Flagging off from Naro Moru Gate (80km) and Golden Gates hotel or environs for 25 and 50km. Afterparty at Wandare Gate and Golden Gates Hotel.

Directions: Mount Kenya Gate Park Hotel is situated close to the Mt Kenya Naro Moru gate. Follow the highway to Naro Moru town, then turn off to Naro Moru Gate. The Hotel is a few km before the gate, on the right.

Golden Gates Hotel is along the Nyeri-Nyahururu road, near Dedan Kimathi University. If following Thika Highway and then continuing straight towards Nyeri, take a sharp left at Kiganjo and follow the road until Golden Gate Hotel.

Distance: There will be marked routes of 25, 50, and 80km. Please choose your chosen distance when completing the form, as this will allow for the club to plan logistics.

Run type: The route will be a mix of trail and tarmac. There will be water and light snacks along the way, but we advise you to carry water in a bottle/hydration pack and any specific snacks you might require.

Google Maps link to the venue: Golden Gate Hotel:

Mount Kenya Gate Park Hotel: https://goo.gl/maps/1Kh8aLWKs1vBRdEd7

Registration: Please register using the link below as soon as possible. If you would like your t shirt or medal on Saturday and if you would like FREE dinner at the finish line you MUST register by Tuesday 6th September 5pm. Anyone who registers after that may not be catered for for dinner, and will get their medal/t shirt (if ordered) after the event: https://forms.gle/J2FypK2y1VyV616w5

Subs: Be sure to come with your M-Pesa topped up to make payment for your subs, as runs have resumed!

Guests: As always, guest fees of 500ksh apply. Please share the following link with anyone interested in joining the club for the first time: http://urbanswaras.co.ke/new-members/

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Urban Swaras Starting Line Run 661 @ Villa Park, Wangige

Dear Swaras, 

Sometimes a week goes by with very little excitement or news. THAT IS NOT THIS WEEK! We’ve been blown away by Swara exploits. Firstly we had a bevvy of runners in Kaptagat, for the inaugural Swaras Kaptagat run, from The King’s Lair, as we dubbed it. We had reported sightings of Kipchoge himself, flagging off by retired champion runner Hon. Leah Malot, tree planting after the run, mud and trails and the most delectable maize cobs you’ve ever tasted. Not to mention the afterparty...no seriously, let’s not mention it 😉 Huge thank you to Shem and Masika for coordinating this new run for us! See some photo highlights: https://sway.office.com/LO9vXgpGA75gXRzk?ref=Link

On the other side of the continent you had a handful of Swaras and other Nairobi recreational runners pushing themselves to new limits with the annual Comrades Run in South Africa – 90km no less! The almighty Annika Berlin left a trail of dust behind her, with an impressive maiden finish in this grueling run, and Sam Ndungu and Andu Debebe (to name a few) crossed the finish line with juice still left in the tank, to raucous applause. Well done all of you!

The Sky-running king himself Victor Miringu completed the 160km Ultra Trail Mont Blanc, a run that most ultra runners dream of. Just wow. Just amazing.

And then Cheruiyot (the man only needs one name), came SECOND in the 160km Chiang Mai Ultra Trail in Thailand, and has some hilarious tales to tell (be sure to chase him down next time you see him…if you can)!

Please celebrate them, and follow their lead, in having fun, pushing to new heights, and embodying #RunningIsLiving!

This week’s run – Villa Park Resort, Wangige

This Saturday we’re heading to a classic Swara venue, Villa Park Resort, Wangige. Bring a friend, it’s not too far, and bring your good cheer, the sun is coming back to Nairobi, I have been reassured! Distances of 10, 15, 20, 25, and 30km will be available (approximate distances only). Full info and registration form here: https://sway.office.com/LO9vXgpGA75gXRzk?ref=Link

Mount Kenya Ultra – read me!!

With one ultra gone, let’s get ready for the next! Mount Kenya Ultra is a flagship Swara run, and this year we are reinstating the infamous Mountain to Mountain route – reworked! on 10th September we will go from Mount Kenya to the Aberdares, with three possible routes: 25km, 50km and 80km. But even if you’ve been at every previous edition of this run, the route will still surprise you, as we find new ways to delight the legs 🙂 Register now: https://forms.gle/7w75iU3gEzzKadhN8

Affordable accommodation has been secured at Golden Gates Hotel in Nyeri (2,500ksh per person B&B single, 3,000ksh total for a double), and Mountain Gate Hotel at Naro Moru Gate (2,000ksh per person B&B). Register now to start getting excited:

Book your accommodation directly with Golden Gate Hotel: 0707 029292 or Mountain Gate Hotel: 0711 267981 

Note: The full ultra runners (80km) should book Mountain Gate Hotel for Friday night and for Saturday book golden Gate Hotel. The 50km and 25km should book Golden Gate Hotel as their starting points are nearby.

The route is 25% trail and 75% tarmac for the full ultra.

The run is charged as a normal Swara run, so no extra charge for members, and 500ksh for guests. We will have optional t shirts and medals for an extra charge. Prices and sign up for this are in the same registration from: https://forms.gle/7w75iU3gEzzKadhN8 #SwarasAroundTheWorld

News

Urban Swaras Starting Line run 660 @ Kaptagat Farm Resort

If you haven’t heard how great this Saturday’s run was, then you must have been hiding under a rock – it was SPECTACULAR! But fear not, this coming week we have something even bigger and better, and there’s plenty to look forward to in the next couple of months! See a LOT of awesome photo highlights in the Starting Line: https://sway.office.com/OAe2WvtJ0uGBCZxr?ref=Link

This week’s run – Kaptagat Run – from the King’s Lair

The time is upon us! The brand new and exciting Kaptagat Run is happening this Saturday! This will be an unmissable trail run, with magnificent elevation and breathtaking green views, with an afterparty, a beautiful venue, and some extra special surprises (keywords are free mbuzi). Full info and register here: https://sway.office.com/OAe2WvtJ0uGBCZxr?ref=Link

Distances: 15, 30, 45, and 60km (please note the slighly later start time, of 7.30am). 

Accommodation: Accommodation has been secured at Kaptagat Farm Resort, with single rooms bed and breakfast at 2,500ksh per person, double rooms bed and breakfast at 4,500ksh, and cottages from 5,000ksh (twin) and 8,000ksh (4-person), and 6,000ksh (double). Please select your accommodation preference in the registration form below.

Transport: We encourage car pooling, and have included this option in the registration form. Please indicate if you would like to offer a lift, or get a lift, and we will share your telephone contact. There is also a shuttle option, with North Rift Shuttle. 1,200ksh one-way, 2,400ksh return.

Registration: You can already register here and we will be updating on registration list on a regular basis to allow for car pooling: https://forms.gle/VWtcgpa2YDSgs7Vx6

Full details are below, please be sure to read the information carefully 🙂

And then don’t forget the Mount Kenya Ultra is on the 10th September, and Naivasha Relay is on 1st October! 

All of this and more in the Starting Line as always: https://sway.office.com/OAe2WvtJ0uGBCZxr?ref=Link

#KingsLair

News

Urban Swaras Starting Line run 659 @Honeywell Resort, Lusigetti

Dear Swaras,

Last week’s run was a GREAT run, winding through the quiet streets of Lavington, Kilimani and Kileleshwa, and was also a bittersweet farewell (or a see you later) to our Trail Queen, Loice Mbogo. She has served as an official of the club since 2019, and we can’t thank her enough for her service to the club and her friendship to many a Swara. We wish her luck as she pursued further studies in the United States! See some photo highlights of the run AND the cake here: https://sway.office.com/L6dz7hvfzq6q20Vq?ref=Link

This week’s run – Honeywell Resort, Lusigetti

This week we are heading back to the true trail, the rugged land we prosper on! We will be in Lusigetti, from Honeywell Resort. Distances will be up to 35km – as usual, please be aware that distances are approximate, and may sometimes vary slightly from the announced distances. Find full details in the Starting Line: https://sway.office.com/L6dz7hvfzq6q20Vq?ref=Link

Kaptagat Run – from the King’s Lair

The next run after this (Saturday 27th August), and the next out of town run, is in Kaptagat, otherwise known as the land that Kipchoge pounds on a daily basis. This will be an unmissable trail run, with magnificent elevation and breathtaking green views, with an afterparty, a beautiful venue, and some extra special surprises (keywords are mbuzi, and special guests).

Distances: 15, 30, 45, and 60km

Accommodation: Accommodation has been secured at Kaptagat Farm Resort, with single rooms bed and breakfast at 2,500ksh per person, double rooms bed and breakfast at 4,500ksh, and cottages from 5,000ksh (twin) and 8,000ksh (4-person), and 6,000ksh (double). Please select your accommodation preference in the registration form below.

Transport: We encourage car pooling, and have included this option in the registration form. Please indicate if you would like to offer a lift, or get a lift, and we will share your telephone contact.

Registration: You can already register here and we will be updating on registration list on a regular basis to allow for car pooling: https://forms.gle/zL4UuMvkLzyNT3ph6

And then don’t forget the Mount Kenya Ultra is on the 10th September!

#SoManyRunsSoLittleTime

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Urban Swaras Starting Line Run 658 @ Ambo Gardens, Lavington

As election campaigns wrapped up, Swaras were out spreading purely running-based manifestos in the shape of our Saturday run from Cafe Bistro, Madaraka! Thank you to all for helping to promote peace and unity in your own small ways, and I hope we all continue to do so. Luckily the campaign rallies did not interfere with our Saturday run, and vice versa, our run did not interfere with the democratic activities! We headed away from Nyayo Stadium, towards Nairobi West, South C, Ngong Road, and the Southern Bypass, and (mostly) kept our soles (and souls) clean with tarmac instead of trail! Thank you to our host, Abdi, a former Swara and life-long club supporter from afar! We also had Enda showcasing their Kenya-made running shoes – we hope to be seeing a lot more of them, so be sure to check them out! See the Starting Line with photo highlights here: https://sway.office.com/uZAJMsuaJdcza5uK?ref=Link

This week’s run – Ambo Gardens, Lavington

In a slight change to the preplanned calendar, we will be running from Ambo Gardens, Lavington, as we know many people will have been travelling this week for voting. See you all there, for distances up to 30km, mostly tarmac. Full details and registration link here: https://sway.office.com/uZAJMsuaJdcza5uK?ref=Link

Great Ethiopian Run

We have been offered an unbeatable Nairobi Recreational Runners’ package to attend the Great Ethiopian Run, so don’t miss out on that. Be sure to check it out (scroll down to the bottom of the Starting Line and reach out to the Secretary if interested in booking): https://sway.office.com/uZAJMsuaJdcza5uK?ref=Link

#AmboAmble

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Urban Swaras Starting Line Run 657 @ Café Bistro, Total Madaraka

Dear Swaras,

You think you know someone, and then they turn around and show you parts of themselves you never knew existed. Karen, you did that to us this Saturday! You showed us muddy trails and back routes that you had kept hidden from us all along. Thank you for showing your true colours! See some awesome photo highlights here: https://sway.office.com/VmPbKy9afYmu937u?ref=Link

This week’s run – Café Bistro, Total Madaraka

We are running in another urban running hotspot this Saturday from the delightful hidden gem that is Café Bistro, at Total Madaraka. This has been a gathering place for many a running club after Stan Chart/Beyond Zero Half Marathon, and Swaras will be descending upon the place this weekend, so don’t miss out! See details below and register right away (and definitely before Thursday). Full info and link to register in the Starting Line: https://sway.office.com/VmPbKy9afYmu937u?ref=Link

Get involved in running your club!

Did you know that the Urban Swaras Running Club is volunteer-led? The CRE (calendar of runs and events) committee and the officials are a group of individuals so passionate about running and the Swaras that they put together the runs and the events that we all enjoy in their free time. But did you also know that YOU can get involved too? if you want to see behind the scenes how a run is put together, and assist in organising one, get in touch! We are also seeking passionate members interested in putting together some snazzy new events later in the year, so reach out if interested! Contact Claire at urbanswaras@outlook.com / Whatsapp +33615209676

Duka La Swara is now closed!

Thank you to all who placed orders for Duka La Swara items. Items are being processed and we will let you know when they are ready for collection. 

Other runs

You absolutely want to click on the Starting Line (https://sway.office.com/VmPbKy9afYmu937u?ref=Link) as we have the Swaras’ exclusive Stan Chart signup link, and an unbeatable package for the Great Ethiopian Run!

News

Urban Swaras Starting Line run 656 @ The Waterfront, Karen

I think everyone can agree that that was one heck of a trail! Perfect Swara terrain and perfect weather, all made for a very merry bunch of Swaras. We ran alongside row upon row of pineapples, then through coffee plantations, we even got watered alongside the pineapples! It sometimes felt like we were running circles around Kilimambogo/Ol Donyo Sabuk, and so we knew we were never ‘too’ far from home! It was a first time for many of us running in this area, and I very much doubt any of us want it to be our last! See the Starting Line for some awesome photo highlights: https://sway.office.com/b093CiDz1hflQPbV?ref=Link

An apology to those on any of the recent runs who have found themselves running longer distances than intended. As you can imagine, it is no easy feat to get exact distances for up to six different distances every week, and we don’t always get it right. For those distances where you had a large ‘bonus’ we apologise, we do our best to try and make sure this doesn’t happen. That being said, please accept that all distances are approximate, and you may find that the final distance is slightly more or slightly less, and we recommend always carrying some water, and/or some money or m-pesa with you in case of emergency. Thanks for your understanding.

This week’s run – The Waterfront, Karen

See you all this Saturday for a run in Karen, from The Waterfront shopping mall. We will meet in the car park (the Karen Road side), and you may take breakfast at any of the restaurants in the mall, for example CJ’s, Saab Bakery, Mama Ashanti, etc). Distances on offer will be approximately 10, 15, 20, 25, and 30km. A heads-up that the intended run at Mvuke Geothermal Spa slated for 6th August is currently being considered for a date change given the impending elections. Please keep an eye out for more information on this. Find full info on the Karen run and the link to register in the Starting Line: https://sway.office.com/b093CiDz1hflQPbV?ref=Link

Duka La Swara is open!

Don’t miss the chance to order hoodies, caps, mugs, jackets and stickers (with some items able to personalised with your name/running nickname)! You have until Friday to order and pay: https://sway.office.com/aciPFO6y85ngx7Pq?ref=Link

#KarenRun

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Urban Swaras Starting Line run 655 @ Dillons Highway Motel, Ngoliba

Dear Swaras, 

We discovered new parts of Ngong Road Forest Sanctuary this week, and a lot of people discovered a new joint to enjoy beers/nyama choma/breakfast off the beaten track, at Forest Breeze Gardens! I hope you’re all making the most of the cool weather to get some longer runs in, and use your Swara hoodies…if you don’t have one yet then keep your eyes open, you’ll have a chance to get your hands on one very, VERY soon! See some photo highlights from Saturday’s run here: https://sway.office.com/jEoygrGPhw9TYGO3?ref=Link

This week’s run – Dillons Hotel, Thika-Garisa Highway, Ngoliba

We are offering you a superb trail this Saturday, on a route scouted by none other than our very own Club Chairman and trail expert, Ajaa Olubayi! This truly is a superb place to run, and I guarantee you will not be disappointed. Expect off-road, expect hills (gentle hills, not EcoLodge style hills!) and a hearty breakfast at a friendly venue, all in a small town past The busy Thika town. we will be flagging off at the slightly later time of 7.30am, to give everyone time to arrive from Nairobi. Please indicate in the registration form if you are open to giving someone a lift, or would like a lift. By indicating either of these options you consent to your telephone number being shared. Distances vary from 10km to 35km, and will be 95% trail/off-tarmac. Just perfect for a Saturday Swara run, I hear you say 🙂 Find full info and the link to register in this week’s Starting Line: https://sway.office.com/jEoygrGPhw9TYGO3?ref=Link

Get involved in running your club!

Did you know that the Urban Swaras Running Club is volunteer-led? The CRE (calendar of runs and events) committee and the officials are a group of individuals so passionate about running and the Swaras that they put together the runs and the events that we all enjoy in their free time. But did you also know that YOU can get involved too? if you want to see behind the scenes how a run is put together, and assist in organising one, get in touch! We are also seeking passionate members interested in putting together some new events later in the year, so reach out if interested! Contact Claire at urbanswaras@outlook.com / Whatsapp +33615209676

#GogoNgoliba

News

Urban Swaras Starting Line run 654 @ Forest Breeze Gardens, Lenana

Dear Swaras,
I hear Swaras have a reputation for hills. Well, there’s on mystery as to why! My own run came to a whopping 1,700m elevation gain – that’s the height of a pretty decent sized mountain! So no wonder we were beat after that run. But suffice it to say that the runners cheering each other on, the Trail Fox following us around with water and words of encouragement, and the cool weather, made this a FANTASTIC outing. To those who missed it, I have no words of comfort – you missed out! See you this coming Saturday at Forest Breeze Gardens, a bit closer to home. And enjoy the last-minute holiday today! See photo highlights from the Masai Eco Lodge run in the Starting Line: https://sway.office.com/6wPLHzxTTYd6Ll2P?ref=Link

This week’s run- Forest Breeze Gardens, Lenana

We’ve had a few weeks a bit far from home, so this weekend we give you a well-deserved lie-in, you only have to get to Lenana/Ngong Road for this one! Distances will be from 10km to 30km and breakfast will be optional for those in attendance. We will have a few Mt Kenya 2019 ultra t shirts and 10th anniversary singlets, and calendars available for sale, grab your bargain 300ksh calendar before the year ends! Find full details in the Starting Line: https://sway.office.com/6wPLHzxTTYd6Ll2P?ref=Link

Subs reminder

If your membership has lapsed and you want to pay to be up-to-date, please m-pesa the club’s Treasurer on 0740 912 116 – Samuel Waweru (this number appears on the Whatsapp group description and in the treasurer’s section in this Starting Line). Please note that the main Whatsapp group is for members only, so if your membership lapses you will be removed from this group, but may remain on the mailing list, social media, and Noticeboard group.

Shortcut to register right away for the Forest Breeze Gardens run: https://forms.gle/65Lb9FVx4zKaFZEZ9

#BreezeBy