Kenya: Coach Berardelli Now Writes Training Plans for Next Season

Kenyan-based Italian coach Claudio Berardelli has shifted gears and is now formulating running programmes for his athletes for next season.

This follows the decimation of the athletics calendar by the coronavirus pandemic that has seen almost the entire globe on quarantine or lockdown.

According to Berardelli, life has now come to a near standstill to more than 40 athletes who have been training under him under the 2 Running Club in Kapsabet, Nandi County.

"They are now training to keep fit and training alone and not in groups in line with the government directive on social distancing," he said.

"There are no competitions taking place right now so there is no specific programme to follow. So we have shifted to next season. The marathoners will now start preparing for next season that starts in September."

The Italian said they were already discussing the next season with his agent so that athletes could step up their preparations after everything goes back to normal.

"For the next season, athletes will have to start training from next month which may prove to be hard unless things will have normalised by then. A marathoner needs three to four months to prepare for a race in order to achieve the best results," he added.

Athletes who have been training under him include 2019 World Championships marathon bronze medallist Amos Kipruto, Amsterdam Marathon champion Vincent Kipchumba, and former 800m world champion Eunice Sum.

Berardelli said all efforts to fight the spread of the coronavirus are welcome because everyone's health is paramount.

"Athletics Kenya did a good thing to close all the training camps as one way of keeping safe from the virus. I have been instructing my athletes to continue training easy as we wait for the virus to be contained."

Before the first case of coronavirus in Kenya, Berardelli's typical day started at 5.30am.

He would leave his home in Eldoret to drive to Kapsabet where he met his group of athletes.

The runners were made up of two groups, marathoners and road races, and athletes who compete in track.

Berardelli would handle the road runners from 6.30am onwards before interacting with the track athletes from 10am.

Berardelli said the virus had economically affected the whole world with many firms shedding workers or introducing salary cuts.

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