James Ouma · James Ouma writes · Mentoring boys in Kenya · Running for My Life · Shompole Wildlife Marathon

Running for My Life Day 6: Progress

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There is something about running in Ngong that is refreshing

Simple Goals

I woke up in the morning to a thick fog. I was almost tempted to sleep for an extra minute. But my alarm had gone off and I had jumped out of bed to switch it off. I read my Bible and had a short devotion, which was followed by stretching and warming up while taking fluids.This is normally the easiest part.

Once I closed the gate behind me and looked towards the hills the temptation to throw in the towel – to rest – felt stronger. The fog was so heavy it covered the windmills in a thick white blanket. I started running towards the CDF office as the cold wind from the hills hit my face with a brutal force. Today’s goal was simple. I was going to try to slice off a few minutes from the one hour that I have been spending running the same distance since i begun training for the marathon.
 
It isn’t a long distance. Is is just that there are other factors that have made me to spend an hour running towards the hills, past the Police Station – Ngong Town – Milele Mall – Zambia Road – Academy Drive – Catholic Church – Ngong Bounty Hotel and finally home. I have driven on this route and takes a matter of minutes. Much as running is always a different case compared to driving the same route, one hour is still too much.
 
Just like the first day of the week, I am meeting and passing lots of children on their way to school. I have already started noting familiar faces of some of them. The same applies to the adults I meet and pass going to work. We will be seeing each other a lot in the coming days.
 
Apart from slicing time, my other goal was to walk less today. Sometimes, a passing vehicle on the narrow rough road forces me to break my momentum of running, which means I have to walk. Luckily enough, it happens only once. As I am running and praying for the children and adults I meet and pass, I think and plan the day ahead.

Progress

I am thankful that my client has given me more work that will keep me occupied for the next 40 days. I also have personal writing I need to accomplish, work with Patty Liston as well as duties for Lifesong Kenya. By the time I see the Catholic Church loom in the horizon, I take a deep breath, dig deep inside for a final push towards the finish line.
 
I push the button on my stop watch and discover I have a reason to celebrate. I have managed to slice 14 minutes in today’s run. Now I need to keep hoping, praying and working hard.
 
“I have a motto on my bedroom wall: ‘Obstacles are what you see when you take your eye off the goal.’ Giving up is not my style. I just want to do something that’s worthwhile.” — Chris Burke
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