I arrived in Kericho knowing I was inadequately prepared for the event which required running 7.5K and biking 20K. First, I was yet to master mountain biking and shifting gears. Secondly, I was competing against people who were more experienced, had better bikes, resources and had slept well the night before. As I prepared my bike, I kept thinking about the 3 valuable lessons for everyday life that have helped define my work with Lifesong Kenya.
3 Valuable Lessons for Everyday Life
Lesson #1: Visualization
My journey to the Kericho Triathlon Series begun many months before when I placed a magnetic picture of a mountain bike on my fridge door. Apart from looking at the photo everyday, I also spent a lot ot time watching numerous videos of triathlons online and on television. I believe that looking at the picture on my fridge door, watching triathlons videos and thinking about it enabled me to sign up and take part in the Team Tri Fit’s Kericho Triathlon 2016 Series.
Lesson #2: Taking Stock
I took stock of the competitors I was up against by listening more and speaking less. This enabled me to remain calm and focused. The duathlon category had two divisions – sprint and relay. Sprint duathlon is an individual race while relay involves 3 team members who tackle the 3 legs of the competition.
During the first 5K run, there were 3 people ahead of me. One of them was a lady competing in the relay duathlon division, meaning there were 2 more members who were going to tackle the 20K bike course and the last 2.5K run.
I remember allowing the lady to run ahead of me. Things changed the moment we neared the starting point as we finished the first lap of the run. I heared the crowd cheer and urging me to overtake her. Blood pumped to my heart as excitement coursed to my head. As I prepared to launch an attack on her, I remembered she wasn’t my competition. I was therefore able to conserve my energy and focus on doing the right thing.
Lesson #3: Rising from the dust
The 20K bike course had winding and rocky hills that were difficult to climb and descend. Most of the competitors had a challenge negotiating the climb and were scared of the steep descent. I knew that this was where the race was going to be won and lost.
During the 4th lap, two things happened that defined my race. I passed the guy who had led throughout the 5K run in the sprint duathlon. That meant I was now in position 2. I was so excited and threw caution to the wind. At some point, my bike speed read 80KM/HR as I flew down the rolling hills. Before I knew it, I was kissing the dust after crashing down!
I quickly picked myself up and got back on the bike. Blood and sweat kept pouring from my forehead and lips as I continued the remaining legs of the sprint duathlon. But I decided to deal with it at the end of the race. I knew finishing in top position depended on my response to the fall. Later on, I discovered it was just a small cut on my forehead, lips and right hand. If I had stopped to take care of it, I would have lost a lot of time and wouldn’t have finished on top.
At the end of the race, I emerged in second position. I still don’t have a bike and it hurts that I am not able to prepare for the remaining events that require a mountain bike. Since I haven’t been able to raise enough funds from my running events, I also know that having a bike will provide an alternative means of transport for my work at the juvenile prison.
Feeling inadequate, lack of resources and funding is a distraction that prevents me from focusing on Lifesong Kenya and its mission. However, I use these 3 valuable lessons for everyday life to navigate every obstacle and challenge that comes my way. Feel free to share these lessons with others and let me know which lesson works best for you. I look forward to hearing from you. Here’s to your success!
“I probably visualize myself, the shots I’m going to get in the game, how I’m going to play defense, what we have to do to stop the other team’s best player, what it’s going to take out of me, the whole aspect of the game.”Paul Pierce