On reflection about the comrades 2019 I observed an aspect that most may ignore.
Whenever I have said to someone that I run and do races, they have immediately asked “Have you done Comrades?” The question is valid. What is interesting is the prestige attached to the run.
When I started running it was for the health benefits associated with the activity. There more involved I got, the more aspects became apparent.
Competition being the most glaring one. Competition with self, others, distance and time. Competition is a wonderful way to explore the abilities of the engineering marvel that is the human body. Anatomically, physiologically, psychologically, emotionally and that other one we call spiritually.
Where I used to find myself was in thinking that the competition was everything.
The duality of human experiences tell us that one can not know success without the existence of failure. It is in how we define the one that the other is automatically defined. If finishing the race is the definition of success then not finishing is failure.
The awareness of self, others and environment, opening yourself up to learning. That is how I have chosen to define success. In simple terms I am successful when I am ALIVE.
In the moments when I return to auto-pilot, doing things just because, I consider that failure. Even in those moments I learn, I can never fail.
My favourite quote “You cannot see beyond the choices you do not understand”
I spent the better part of my life not even understanding my own choices, let alone those of others. The day I accepted that I need to understand myself, opened me up to the fact that I knew nothing about anyone else, and therefore taught me to learn.
To put all this in perspective.
Did Mothibi succeed where Mthembu failed?
Was Garda Steyn the most successful of all?
Did everyone who finished succeed?
Did everyone who did not finish fail?
Who decides the terms?
Are you defined by your circumstances or do you define your circumstances?
I learnt about myself, family, my friends, my trainees, the running community the comrades.
What a day it was!
You are Love and you are Loved.