Friday, September 5, 2008

"You don't have to be great to do something...

...you have to do something to be great!"
- wise words from my long lost tri buddy, peter.

i thought about this for awhile and really think it makes a lot of sense. the statement came about when he was telling how he met a couple of tri friends over the weekend who know me and thought i was gutsy. our chat went something like this:

peter: people admire ur guts!
senn: u know wat dat means right?
senn: means i'm so slow if they were me, they wudn't bother! hahaha
peter: you don't hv to be great to do something... you have to do something to be great

knowing me, i had to be philosophical about everything, so i took a trip down memory lane to last month's desaru long distance triathlon. it was a good race that i did relay with arif. the next day was the sprint event.

it was bloody hot!

as we sat under the tent after the finishing line, waiting for our friends, i saw nurina cross the line. i sat next to her and congratulated her on another great race. i asked her how it was and she replied she did very well. and the fact that she ran the whole distance, she was very proud of herself. she said "i know it's only 3km, but the fact that i ran all the way, i did exceptionally well" (it's been a few weeks now since desaru, but congrats again nurina. keep it up! you did something, and you became great!)

then there's patsy.

gusty patsy, who ran her own race. who wasn't bothered by whatever time it took her to finish desaru.. or any other race. she was alone out there but she went on and on and on till she completed.

again, congrats patsy... you did something, and became great.

and this 'being great' phenomena doesn't just happen in races!

last saturday after a nice ramadhan ride, upiq humoured us with his stories of school. light hearted and strong willed, you would never have guessed how quickly he has improved his physical health.

upiq is fantastic. i met him on a ramadhan run up genting last year. he started about half an hour before the main pack but we caught up with him on the downhill heading towards goh tong jaya. and he looked tortured.

last saturday he reminded me of that genting run where he really did feel like quiting. but with a little bit of encouragement and (a lot) white lies about goh tong being just a stone throw away... downhill... he decided to continue.

since then, upiq has completed triathlons, rides mostly with the front group, is always a burst of energy to watch and looking forward to our 1st anniversary via a night run up genting.

congrats upiq. i know you haven't achieved everything yet and is still just beginning. but see how doing something 'small' has made you great?

same ride last saturday, i brought dad along. dad has been riding his 'oh-so-not-euro-cool' mountie for about 6 months now. every morning he rides around putrajaya. just 10k at an avg of 17kmh. he was proud as a bean (huh?) at what he has been doing.

he treated my invitation to saturday's ride as if it were an ironman race. the amount of prep he did!
1. get bigger water bottle
2. ask nutrition advise
3. seek advice on what attire to wear (imcyclist.com t-shirt was decided because he felt it showed team support!)
4. fix night light
5. fix helmet straps
6. check time... every 15 mins from 8pm till 9.30pm, counting down to when we had to leave for start point.

... all this for a 30km ramadhan night ride with lethargic riders.

i smiled inside because he was so anxious and cute yet it meant a whole lot to him. so i decided to play strict, he likes it when it feels like a challenge.

my dad was tortured physically but didn't complain.

he even had the gusto to ask me if i would take him on my rides to pd one day while climbing the last hill towards alamanda!
dad: do you think i can ride with you to pd?
senn: sure.. but at your speed, it might take forever (senn the tough nut cranking up the pressure)
dad: how far is it?
senn: 70km...
dad: ah! that's just 2.5 times longer than tonight
senn: ...one way...
dad: o.. maybe mom can drive and meet me at pd instead...
senn: maybe... (i said it matter of factly, but i was beaming with pride inside! as if he was my kid learning to ride for the first time!)

halfway through the alamanda hill, he looked so tortured i suggested he turned into our housing area instead of finishing at taman warisan... it was really on the way and we pass the junction en route to start point.

although tortured and out of breath, he managed a smile and a fist and said "must cross the finishing line senn!"

so, cross the finishing line he did. last one back, half the crowd gone but happy and proud. he also rode back from start point that night so technically he rode more than everyone else that night!

good job kol(b) lai. you weren't great at cycling, but you did something, and you were great!

if you look around you'll probably find a lot more people who aren't great at something, but did something and became great.

and if you haven't yourself, why not do something today? you might end up being great...

10 comments:

Ishsal said...

indeed, dad was in super spirits! all we can hope for is to be like nurina, patsy and dad when we're there, still doing something great. next ride i plan to take my mountie to keep dad company :)

beyond cut off said...

thanx ish,

be prepared for the occasional high pitch, loud coo-ing sound my dad makes when he's out of steam!

it's a bit shocking, but somewhat rythmic after awhile...

Zailan said...

this reminds when i met you father the first time during a seminar years back. sat with him during lunch and he was eagerly explaining to us abt her daughter's cow bike and newly found hobby.

The Editor said...

I think you have done great by affecting people like me by just being an inspiration and a candle in hose darkest moments. How i wish i can be half the person that you are.

For what you have done and inspire me, I will remember you always.

Mich said...

agreed with the title ,you don't have to wait to be great to start. As most of you guys know, i started with swimming, then running and cycling is the last one. i still remember i can't even take out the water bottle from the cage to drink, and of course i'm worry , but then again I always believe you have to start somewhere and let the experience you gain teach you .

Mich said...

btw i already know how to drink and eat on the bike :D

beyond cut off said...

congrats michelle on your bike eating/drinking skill!

Wandernut said...

That made me feel all fuzzy inside.

You've got an awesome dad.
And he's got an awesome daughter ;)

Stupe said...

I wish my dad would be like yours.

been trying to whip him back to shape since he had that stroke.

Dancing Ciken said...

babe, yr dad sempoi giler. dia senyum sentiasa, kalau tengah susah hati tengok muka dia pun dah boleh jadi ceria semula