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How to Rediscover Joy and Confidence in Running?

by On Jul 16, 2021

Failure is the first step to success.

How To Rediscover Joy and Confidence In Running?

In our running journey, we do fall and lose our way. It seems like an endless race that we may not be able to cross the finish line. Along the way, we might crash and de-motivated to keep pushing on.

No matter how challenging the ride is, don't ever doubt yourself and remember why you started running.

RunSociety is pleased to invite our three experienced runners to share their running adventure with us. Their stories are truly inspirational and empower our running community to rediscover joy and confidence in running.

Without further ado, let's get to know each of them.

1. Priscilla Chan

Bio: Singaporean, 31 years old, Digital Marketing Manager

How To Rediscover Joy and Confidence In Running?
Runner: Priscilla Chan

Priscilla had already been into sports at a very young age and  always willingly volunteered to take part in the 4 x 100m relay in school for sports day! Her running journey officially started in 2011 when she had her first full-time job with a sports company. Ever since she has been running for leisure.

It’s also a way to keep in shape and also a way for her to de-stress. She had not really taken running seriously back then, it was all just for the fun of it, until she found out that her uncle, David Lim, commonly known as "Yellowfish," was a swimming coach.

He also conducts track sessions weekly; that was when she decided to give it a try since she never understood what a track session was, and she never regretted it.

Soon after, she joined the New Balance Run Club and met people with the same interest and passion for running. They went for their first-ever Run-cation together in 2019 for the Gold Coast Marathon.

RS: What inspired you to start running?

Priscilla: My mother, the queen of my heart! Seeing how much time and effort my mother put in for her training really inspired me to challenge myself.

 "If my mom can do it, I can do it, too!" I decided to start running with her one day, and I actually enjoyed it.

Priscilla Chan

Then, eventually, I signed up for my first ever 10km race with her in 2011 (and many more). That was how I got started on my running journey. 

RS: Do you find running tough and how do you motivate yourself to keep moving forward? 

Priscilla: I would be lying if I said running was not tough. It is tough! I believe that running with a group of friends can help motivate each other, and it also lifts your mood. It works, try it!

RS: What is the most unforgettable moment in your running journey?

Priscilla: : Crossing the finish line with my mother whenever we take part in races together. That sort of feeling is priceless.

RS: When you hit rock bottom, how do you rediscover the joy of running?

Priscilla: Set a weekly challenge or goal you know you can achieve and go for it! If you know you're not going to enjoy running alone, then don't do it alone. Always remember why you started running.

Remember when you first started, and you knew nothing about running? Help a new runner out! Make a new friend, be their running buddy.

RS: What does running mean to you?

Priscilla: Running has taught me how to be patient. If you have a passion for something, you will make it work.

You can follow Priscilla on Instagram: @westartariot

2. Badrulhisham Bin Abdul Razak

Bio: Singaporean, 43 years old, Creative Consultant

How To Rediscover Joy and Confidence In Running?
Runner: Badrulhisham Bin Abdul Razak

Badrulhisham has been running short distances of 3 to 5 kms for six years, but he only started taking it seriously since just before the pandemic started. He regularly runs 10k as a norm nowadays, with half to full marathons, done periodically, or when he does have the capacity.

He has taken part in many virtual runs in 2020/2021, with both commercial and some charitable organisations to boot. He prefers distance running over timing. When he runs, he will take on his alter ego, the Masuku Runner.

RS: What inspired you to start running?

Badrulhisham: I’ve always been running. It’s a very individual sport. I’m not really good with other team sports. I’ve played soccer and badminton in the past, but running seems to draw towards me more. I do not have to follow any specific route, pace or anyone.

It’s a free-for-all type of activity. There’s no need for any type of equipment other than running shoes and your legs. Just run.

RS: Do you find running tough and how do you motivate yourself to keep moving forward?

Badrulhisham: Running is both mentally and physically challenging by any standards. Even now, I still feel that running is tough. However, knowing that you are improving every step of the way is more encouraging than anything else.

Even stopping or walking to take a breather at certain points during a run gives me a lot more perspective in life.

I love to take photos of my journey, not only of nature but also the concrete surroundings on my route. In every photo, I try to highlight what we normally don’t see as we pass by every day.

The idea that I’m able to speak through my run through photos pushes me out of bed to run.

Badrulhisham Bin Abdul Razak

RS: What is the most unforgettable moment in your running journey?

Badrulhisham: For the first time in my life, I ran a virtual full marathon 42km. This virtual marathon run last year holds a big significance in my life as I also hit 42 years of age! 42 running a 42.

The idea (and the ‘wows’ I’ve gotten from friends and family) that I’ve run from the eastern end to the western end of Singapore is simply unthinkable in the past.

It has always been a life-long dream of mine to achieve a marathon distance and run a triathlon before I reach 40. But work has hindered all of this in the past.

RS: When you hit rock bottom, how do you rediscover the joy of running?

Badrulhisham: I’ve always loved to run in the past. All the way from school days and National Service, I’ve taken part in several competitions. Work and career in the later years took me out of running, as my job required me to work very long hours, with sleepless nights in between.

With the Circuit Breaker in Singapore, I found myself trying to find an avenue of de-stressing. In the past, I would normally go for a run whenever I needed to think.

This was no different, and I needed more thinking done! So, my runs became longer, and I was able to take more photos during my runs.

RS: What does running mean to you?

Badrulhisham: To me, running is the extension of my active mind. Having to run is to activate the brain cells that have been dormant in my head. I will continue to run as far as my legs can take me.

Running also lets me see and experience new surroundings, things that we pass by and miss every day.

You can follow Badrulhisham on Instagram: @thebaadrool

3. Raden Gerhana Ramadhianti

Bio: Indonesian, 30 years old

How To Rediscover Joy and Confidence In Running?
Runner: Raden Gerhana Ramadhianti

Raden started running at the end of 2018 because of her health issue. Beginning with non-routine jogging in 2019, she dedicated her life to running eagerly, routinely, with proper methods. Especially, when she knew there were a lot of running race competitions.

She started to register for a lot of races until the end of 2019. She also tried to join a program that was held and coached directly by her friend, ‘the Half-Marathon Category’ at the Singapore Marathon. She never imagined that she could be addicted to something along these lines.

Back then, she was able to run a 3K in one time in less than a year and also finished her first half-marathon race competitions. It was quite difficult to do this consistently; at the same time, she has a lot of things to do and duty at the office.

However, when running becomes something that she needs the most, she will find many ways to manage her time to keep running.

RS: What inspired you to start running?

Raden: I started running due to my health issue. I had frequent nosebleeds and urinary tract infections. This happened because I was sitting and making reports in an air-conditioned room for too long.

Finally, I decided to do more exercise, so I chose running. The easiest exercise that you can do on your own is running. Even though it was not routine at that time, that was where I started.

RS: Do you find running tough and how do you motivate yourself to keep moving forward?

Raden: It is pretty challenging to be consistent, both internally and externally. For the external, it usually becomes difficult because of the excessive workload, from morning to night and also the lack of rest. If you do not get enough sleep, it is dangerous to force yourself to run.

Internally, there were periods of saturated, even overtrained, when the body was actually tired and also decreased motivation.

However, because I know that exercise is important, and running is the most relevant sport for me, I am open to various ways to stay motivated. There are:

  • I am quite competitive, so I registered for several races from the beginning of 2019 until the end of the year. I inevitably had to be consistent in training to take part in those races (knowing there is a cost to invest in those races, so I tried to train for optimal results).
  • I have enough social interests, so I tried to find friends or a community to run with. It really worked for me.
  • I considered running as a ‘me time.’ When I was tired and inattentive with work, I ran. It made my mind much fresher and relaxed. It also boosted my energy and lifted my mood.
  • I bought a smart watch sports as an investment and reminder to keep consistent because I like it when I have to take a note and record my running performance or collect kilometers.
  • Explore new places and routes as a way to keep me passionate in my runs.

RS: What is the most unforgettable moment in your running journey?

Raden: I won third place in the 5K category in the Superball Run race because I felt the achievement was a result of the ups and downs of my training.

In the beginning, I never thought and planned that I’d be able to reach the podium; that was something 'unreachable' for me. It was incredible and unbelievable for me.

I also proved that as a Muslim, the Hijabi style does not stop me from reaching an achievement.

Raden Gerhana Ramadhianti

Even if we fail, as long as we are patient and persistent, there will be a time when we can achieve the results.

RS: When you hit rock bottom, how do you rediscover the joy of running?

Raden: Sometimes, there were times when I felt stuck with no improvement and tired of running. I felt this when I was participating in the program in the BFI Run 2020 competition, as at that time, the workload was high and mentally challenging, and I was not okay.

Finally, I took a break from running because I really felt I needed a break. Even if I start running again, I will try to run without a target pace. I found a way to enjoy it again while gaining my motivation.

I also reflect on the causes of fatigue or why the feeling of joy was lost. I learned from it, and I realized that I was impatient and wanted the perfect practice that made me not enjoy the process.

When the target is not achieved, I often feel like a failure and not motivated. I am now starting to rebuild the consistency of my practice and accepting that the training process will not run smoothly and often fluctuates.

As I am more accepting of it, now I enjoy the process of the ups and downs much more and mentally, I feel more stable now.

RS: What does running mean to you?

Raden: For me, running is more than just a hobby. It has become a necessity. Running is as important as eating three meals a day and sleeping 8 hours a day.

Running helps me get to know myself better, and I realized that my mental and health stability gradually improves. It becomes self-care to me.

You can follow Raden on Instagram: @rdgerhana

Do not rush and take your time to gain back your confidence in running. If you have an inspiring story, feel free to write to us and share your adventure with us; we would love to hear them.

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Location
Singapore
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