Incredible Kipchoge smashes Marathon World Record

Eliud Kipchoge from Kenya is the best marathon runner in the world. He is also now the fastest. On Sunday during the Berlin Marathon, Kipchoge absolutely smashed the world record by 78 seconds, running an incredible time of 2 hours I minute 39 seconds. This run was one of the greatest athletic achievements in the history of sport, up there with Usain Bolt’s 9:58 in the 100 meters.

The marathon is a 26.2 mile race.  Kipchoge ran an average mile time of 4:38 – including a flash-like 4:22 to start the race. To put this achievement into perspective, look at the past world records for the mile. The first professional record back in 1855 was Charles Westhall’s 4:28. But whereas Westhall could fall over the line and have a nice cup of tea, Kipchoge kept on running the mile race… 26 more times!

Some people have commented that a sub-2 hour marathon may be beyond a human’s potential. Perhaps we just aren’t designed to run that fast for that long. Even Sunday’s time of 2:01:39 may be difficult to beat. If Kipchoge himself continues to compete though, anything might be possible.




Post-typhoon walk and swim

We walked around the Gold Coast early this morning to see how badly the typhoon had battered the area. As expected there were branches and trees everywhere, more damage than the typhoon last year.

What was most surprising though was the beach. I expected tonnes of rubbish washed up by the turbulent sea… but it was pristine! The water was clean, the sand spotless.

I’ve seen post-typhoon pictures of gold Coast beach from recent years and they were gruesome.

I have no idea why the beach was so untouched by the storm but in any case I was happy to celebrate with a delightful swim!

Typhoon Mangkhut blows through Hong Kong

So today started mildly enough with light rain and moderate winds. It did ramp up though around 10am and it’s sort of stayed there since. There’s branches flying about so we haven’t even been out – a shame cause I quite enjoy walking in storms.

I started stretching earlier after I told muky I was going for a run ( she answered ‘ok’….) Apparently though she was ‘ only joking’ and I was ordered to stay put or else she would ‘tell my mother!

In the end I didn’t go but I did read of a running club in Hong Kong called the T8 harriers club or something… They only meet when there’s a T8 storm. I wonder if any of them got blown away today?

Stay safe everyone.

Reflecting as Typhoon Mangkhut approaches

Typhoon fever has hit Hong Kong and every man, woman and child is making preparations. Residents are quickly putting up paper-thin tape to protect their houses and buying as much food and water as possible in case they need to last one day without the local supermarket.

I was looking for an update just now, and started reading an article in the NY Times (here). It leads with the headline: Typhoon Mangkhut: First Deaths Reported as Storm Churns Through Philippines 

       “By 4 p.m., Mangkhut’s eye had crossed Luzon, the Philippines’ largest island, and was     about 100 miles off its west coast, headed for Hong Kong and southern China,       according to the Philippine weather service.”

Reading through to this point in the third paragraph I stopped. Hang on, I live in Hong Kong! This might not be good…In actual fact the typhoon will most probably slip past us but it made me think.

Sometimes we read tragic news stories from far off places, and in some way they never really connect with us on an emotional level. They are just things, happening somewhere. As the typhoon comes towards Hong Kong though, with the possibility of serious consequences, it seems a good time to remember that the news we read in times like this happens to real people with homes and families. People who are suffering. We can’t do too much about these things most of the time but we can try to be more thoughtful towards people around us and perhaps develop the intention to think of these other people at least as often as we think about ourselves. This was the first thought I had looking through the article…….but…..

….then…….I found a picture of the typhoon……and I had a second thought…

typhoon evil.jpeg

…. it’s……. terrifying!!! Just look at it! It looks like one of the creatures from Alien or a demon unleashed from the underworld come to destroy humankind! Arghhh!!! Drop the tape and run for your lives!!!!





‘Meditations’ by Marcus Aurelius

Marcus Aurelius was one of the greatest Roman emperors. He ruled the empire from 161 to his death in 180 A.D, nearly 2000 years ago. While in power he wrote Meditations, 12 short collections of his private thoughts which he never intended to publish. In other historical cases we don’t always find too much of interest but Aurelius was a deep thinking philosopher, a wise emperor widely respected and admired. He practised stoicism, a life philosophy that holds self-responsibilty, truth and virtue above all else. So we have in Meditations the private reflections of a wise and virtuous leader who also happened to be the most powerful man in the world. Compelling stuff.

After seeing Meditations mentioned and quoted so many times over the years, I finally went ahead and got my first copy:

Super portable as well, it’s almost a pocket book!

I also went ahead and bought a copy for my kindle

So if you’re at all curious and find yourself often searching for answers to difficult questions, you now have the chance to get some practical life advice from one of the greatest leaders in history, straight to your mobile’s Kindle app for free!

Also, unless you fancy decoding some fairly mysterious English- get the Hays translation – it’s by accounts the easiest to understand.

The Apple (non)event 2018…

What a wash out – and to think just yesterday I was excited about it!

All the hype in the world and they delivered what? A phone and a watch. That was it. Ok a couple of phones and a couple of watches but surely they’ve been working on some other stuff!? Yeah, the phones’ screens are a little bigger, the processors a little faster and the cameras a little better but every phone company everywhere is doing that! Where’s the innovation?

I thought they’d taken the ridiculous notch out of the top of the phone when I saw the first pics:

But no… They were just hiding them to make the screens seem normal. Here’s the screens in colour:

Ridiculous. Want to see an HD film on your phone? Can do! But you won’t see all of it! Want to check the picture you just took in full screen. Sure! But let’s cut off a little piece of the picture shall we? This is surely a design flaw that I’m sure wouldn’t have seen the light of day under Steve Jobs. I’d never get a phone with a bit cut out of the screen.

The only slither of light was the new medical functionality of the Apple watch which seems set to save lives. This though doesn’t really impact on the average user. I said yesterday that if they sorted the battery on the watch then I might be interested. Well they haven’t. It’s exactly the same. With the Apple watch you’re stuck with a watch that you have to charge every. single. day. Compare that with my xiaomi super duper watch that last 6 weeks – I don’t even know where my charger is! It just keeps going!

The lack of iPads was pretty disappointing too though rumour has it that they will release them in October. Will they be any good though? I am not holding my breath.

Get ready for Apple’s 2018 key note and product launch tonight

Last Thursday Apple became the first trillion (yeah, that’s trillion with a ‘t’) dollar company. Last year they gambled on people being willing to spend $1000 usd on a mobile and they were right.

Tonight in their annual event they look set to reveal three new phones, the 4th Apple watch, a range of new ipads and probably some other stuff.

I haven’t been interested in an Apple event since Tim Cook took over but this year I put off buying an ipad pro to see how impressive these new ones are. Leaks pics suggest they’ve lost the home button which I’m not sure I like but there may be significant upgrades in other areas, so I’m interested to see what they are.

My Samsung Note 5 is also starting to misbehave after nearly three years so I might be tempted by a new phone as well…..and if the Apple watch sorts out its battery that’s a possibility too.

It’s kicking off at 1am Hong Kong time. Let’s look at the products tomorrow!