I showed up every day for last year’s Winter Afrobloggers Challenge. I ran that marathon, mile after mile, stride by stride. I turned at each corner, kept it going, took the straight path, ran up hill. I got to the 21K mark. I was still strong. My mind was focused.
When I got to the 30K point, I felt my writing muscles cramping, my lips started drying up. They had light cracks as though a season of drought was setting in. I quenched my thirst at intervals, sipped water and licked glucose to give me energy to keep the run going. The wind blew some of the glucose onto my face. White glucose dust stuck to my cheeks.
At 38K, my brain demanded for more oxygen, my feet were giving in. My knees said enough. My heart kept pumping blood to my brain, working and sounding like the beat of an African drum. I was drenched in sweat. I clenched my teeth. I kept it going. My ears heard sounds of crickets. I was running on energy
On the 30th day at the 42K mark, I crossed the finish line with a final post about Eliud Kipchoge. I tore the tape and fell to the ground, couldn’t do a victory lap because my knees felt crippled. Kipchoge was my inspiration for sticking to the writing challenge last year. Sadly, I have a different story this year. I haven’t been able to repeat the daily writing consistency of last year. I show up on Wednesdays. That’s life.
If there is any notable African figure I’d like to meet today, Kipchoge is the guy.
He has won gold in all major marathons he’s run from 2014 to 2019. That’s consistency. He’s the first person to run a marathon distance in under two hours. That’s leading the way and setting the bar. I watched the INEOS 1:59 Challenge last year when he achieved that feat. It was a surreal moment. It lifted my spirit to what can be achieved if we pushed ourselves a little further, took our chances, prepared ourselves for a cause.
His first attempt at running a sub two-hour marathon failed. He didn’t give up. He believed it was possible. He kept at it, practicing, keeping his body in shape, having the right nutrition, working with the right team. He had a supportive team around him. They worked with him and cheered him on to the success he achieved.
Even though he has all those accolades, he still shows up for training. He practices. He tunes his body to race. He encourages his teammates. I have watched him on TV, seen some of his interviews. I follow him on Twitter. I check up what he’s upto. He’s got a likeable personality. He’s got a level of humility that challenges me to stay grounded.
“No human is limited” – Eliud Kipchoge
P.S: Passt gut auf euch und bleibt gesund means Take good care of yourself and stay healthy.