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A Reflection

Our new routine at home is to sit down with our 3 year old and let him or ask him (this super active cute little guy) to share his activities at his school (he is in Playgroup). The game that he played, the friends he talked to, the new song that he learned etc.

It’s a short review of his (daily) activities on that day– a reflection, if you will.

Now, before you pack up your bag and go home at the close of business day, do your review of the day.

Have you ticked all the boxes for today?



A Head Start

If you are a fan of Robin Sharma (like me) then you must be familiar with one of his tips to be more productive: wake up at 5AM.

Being quite competitive myself, I want to outdo Mr Sharma by waking at 4AM every morning. Well, I must admit that I missed this super early habit from time to time when I had a very late night. The main reason that I need to wake up that early is that I need to catch up on my ‘running’ mileage — to prepare myself for the race, a half marathon race.

Next week will be the last month of 2012.

All the productivity ‘gurus’ or ‘practitioners’ are ‘bombarding’ my inbox on getting a head start for 2013. Well, more like a nice reminder, though.

The reasoning is very simple. Don’t be like the rest of the people who are starting to contemplate the New Year’s Resolution at the end of December or (even worse) in January.

Start now.

Give yourself a head start for 2013.

Set your goals and plan how to achieve them.

The Incrementalist

I “borrow’ this term from Scott Belsky’s inspiring book: “Making Ideas Happen”.

Basically, the incrementalist is the combination of the “dreamer” and  the “doer”.

Someone who loves new ideas or concepts and at the same time he/she is also — in my own term — so restless which in turn pushes themselves to get into action in implementing or realizing the ideas / concepts.

I guess I just got stuck in my ‘dreamer’ self  when it comes to writing in the past months. No, I am not trying to justify myself or even worse seeking excuses as to why this supposedly daily blog sometime turns into a monthly one.. LOL (Believe me.. There are almost 50 drafts which are dying to be published; however my ‘dreamer’ side of me just keeps telling me that those drafts are not just ‘ready’ yet.)

My two cents?

Get un-stucked. Be the incrementalist! Dream it and do it!

Be Inspired!

I can still vividly remember (and it is still resounding in my head sometime — well most of the time, these days, though) when one of my former colleague told me about “going through the grind”.

I know that he meant well..

‘Going through grind’ can be translated to ‘self-discipline’. Yes, it requires enormous willpower to beat the inertia to go through the same basic regimen — day in and day out.

Alas, we’re not robots or machine.

Human beings are far more complex with their biological and emotional make-up.

There’s no doubt in my mind that we require the 10,000 hours of practice / the deliberate practice / the ideal habit etc for us to reach whatever goals that we conceive and would like to achieve.

So.. We need that slight ‘nudge’ of inspiration from time to time when the supposedly well-oiled-machine is losing its traction.

Be inspired. Spend sometime with your loved ones. Run more miles. Read more inspiring books. Talk to more people.

..and after that, have fun keeping your nose to the grindstone again 🙂

Half Marathon (My Take on Standard Chartered Half Marathon Indonesia 2012)

[Caution: Backward and Forward Plot]

0 – 17KM

At 17km, I ‘screamed’ to myself: “This is torturous!”

When I reached 16km, I thought to myself “What am I doing? Don’t I have better things to do in a fine sunny Sunday morning”

At 9km, little that I knew when I ran passing a person (who literally shouted at himself : “Come on (his own name)! Let’s go.”) that I would scream and shout at myself. Although, I somehow managed to maintain my poised (externally) and only ‘shouted’ silently to myself when I reached 17km.

Oh, I also heard someone gave a pep talk to himself while running. He sounded like a school teacher telling off his student:”I have never seen a more dissapointing runner like you.”

Funny how people have their own way of keeping themselves motivated in a half marathon race.

What happened during the first 9km? I managed to maintain the speed between 5.45 to 6 min per km. The training plan and the pain of  executing the plan in discipline manner definetely paid off!

How about the start? I knew that I should have emptied my bladder. I could foresee a long queueing line to the portable toilet. I did just that. Took a ‘leak’ before I left home. It took only a 10 minute drive to get to the race venue. I’m such a lucky guy to have a supportive wife who drove me to the race venue.

So, I guessed I was on the right track already to start this half marathon. I guessed wrong. The combination of 3 sips of water and the rush of adrenaline plus the espresso that I had before I left home served me well as ‘diuretic’ trigger.

Yep. I did stand in line for the toilet before the START. Fortunately, someone let me take his turn to go to toilet first knowing that I was doing the half marathon (while he is doing 10km). Thank you kind stranger!

[sorry for this backward plot, folks]

Quick Thoughts

What kept me running? I did not run for the prize – of course.

Ever heard of the power of visualization? I visualized my wife and son waiting at the FINISH line. And with the runner’s HIGH kicking in.. The serenity is simply indescribable.

I did reach the finish line, though. It felt like reaching a new ‘height’ in running.

We can learn a lot of lessons from running that we can actually apply in life.

At first, when we start something new or something different, the motivation and passion  gives us the ‘nudge’ to start.

In the middle, when we are going through the daily grind, the habit and discipline works on us like clockwork.

To finish?

You have to finish what you start, right? Of course.

Nothing replaces actual experience. We can always plan and prepare..

To actually finish something ‘BIG’ is a journey of self discovery.

What are you made of? What keeps you going? Will you give up?

So.. To finish (to run that last 4km) requires a reminder of why you start this crazy journey to begin with..


Still interested to know how I actually finish my first half marathon?

At 18km, when I prepared to speed up and finish strong in the last 3km, I started by tightening my knee support.

Wrong move.

Somehow, it caused a stitch in my left ankle. Oops..

I slowed down by walking and running intermittently which caused me to miss my target pace and ended up running to: 7 minute to 8 minute per km.

I did run consistently at the last 1 km and carried my little kiddo to the finish line. Yes, they were waiting for me (10 meters from the finish line).

Thank you my little cute family.