Singapore has a running event in a few weeks. It is more than just a single race. It is a combination of a full-marathon, half-marathon, 10k, and kids run staged concurrently. With different starting points, the races finish at similar times on the green near city hall. With staged starts beginning at 5 in the morning, it is an event that intimidates many individuals that are thinking of running.
As I watch individuals training, it is easy to spot three different kinds of runners. There are a few veterans. The way they run, very efficient, with a constant source of hydration, experience, and how they dress, minimal but function, are models that others should pay attention to. In the main, they are a quiet group. They get on with their training and seem to be in a world of their own.
Another group that is easy to spot is the novice that will likely sleep through the starting gun. They seem to talk more than train and you are never sure if they have really signed up. I know a few in this group. The obvious thing that stands out is that I have never seen them train or even in a pair of trainers.
The large majority fall into the “I want to, I think I can, I hope I can” category. They are sincere. They are intense. They are training, staying healthy, and getting ready for the big day. I hope the experience will be a good one. From running I know that the toughest part will be deciding that they want to go the distance, especially when the heat and the bright sun kicks in on the quiet stretches. I am impressed by the sense of humbleness that I find in these novice runners. Their attitude of hopeful trust in the process of training reminds me of David’s lingering ask of God; “Keep watch over me and keep me out of trouble; don’t let me down when I run to you.” (Psalm 25.20) Given life uncertainty, a little hesitation is a good thing.