Former London marathon champion Vivian Cheruiyot has brushed off the use of lights for athletes to run fast and break records.

Cheruiyot, who is returning into action from maternity leave recounted leaving track for marathon where there were no lights but athletes ran their own race to victory, by breaking records.

“Unlike in the recent days where athletes are running faster times by use of yellow rays guiding them to run fast. We used to run well because we never had running lights to dictate our pace but we depended on pacemakers and ran quicker times,” said the 2018 London marathon champion.

She said that when she left, she had great 5,000m and 10,000m great runners like Hellen Obiri and the late Agnes Tirop, a rare breed to be found.

“When I left track in 2016, I left strong people like Obiri (Hellen), the late Agnes (Tirop) among others but now the 5,000m and 10,000m athletes are not that strong. I don’t know where we are heading to but God willing young ones will come to fill the vacuum and take over from us. It is not easy to get people like Obiri (now in marathon), me and the late Tirop. We used to be very strong, especially at world events and when we lined up, people knew we were going to get something out of it,” she said.

The former 5,000m Olympic Games 5,000m gold medalist said she is cutting off weight as she wants to resume running next year before hanging her spikes.

The double world 5,000m champion said that she is working on cutting her weight after maternity leave and ready to return into action next year with the sole purpose of running better than before.

The double world 10,000m champion won her first Olympic gold at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil before switching to marathon where she made her debut at the London marathon the following year.

“Right now I cannot say anything on my first race I will be running because I just began training and losing weight and cutting off weight is my priority but probably next year I will do something great,” said Cheruiyot.

“My last race was during the 2020 London marathon where I did not finish the race because it was during the coronavirus pandemic period. It was almost cancelled but they decided to host it. I was in good shape, very fit and everything went on well but it was really cold, so much rain and that took a toll on me, hence dropping out,” she said.

As age continued catching up with the pocket rocket, she explains that transiting to marathon from track and field and cross country after 18 years was not easy but it was the best time for her to move.

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