My Way of Living + Time

The BOTAK CLP : How A Running Icon Made Me Change My Mind

Warning : You will NOT agree with this entry. 95% probability. Which is good.

I went into the BOTAK Carbo Loading Party at UP's Bahay ng Alumni with no great expectations. I was tired, long day. All I wanted was to get my singlet and race kit. And to get home as soon possible. But little did I know that I would bear witness to something that could possibly impact my life in more ways than I could think of.

Bring it on... ... .

The Parable of the Hungry Ultraman

Hungry Ultraman : May I have some pesto pasta

Waiter : Ok Sir!

Hungry Ultraman : May I have some of that Bolognese

Waiter: Um, ok Sir!

Hungry Ultraman : May I have some of that Carbonara please

Waiter : Ugh, Ok Sir.

Hungry Ultraman : May I have more of that Carbonara

Waiter : Ugh ok.

Hungry Ultraman : May I have more please, I am quite hungry and I paid a lot for this .

Waiter: ... ... ... . Ok.

Hungry Ultraman : Just a bit more... .

Waiter : Sir, there are 50 more runners which need to be fed.

Hungry Ultraman : Oh, okay. If you put it that way.

Waiter : ... ...

Hungry Ultraman : Hey, could I come back for second servings?

Waiter : Why me Lord? Why me?
First, I am not the Hungry Ultraman. Second, you can't make this stuff up. You just can't.

The Dinner Table. GBM

Dang I'm late. Got lost. Thank God Pat's here, we have a table. I'm seated at a table where they seem all seem to know each other. Sharing ultraman stories and anecdotes. It's like an old boys club, and I'm on the outside looking in. The common denominator amongst these guys is that they're nice. Really nice. Like we've known each other for a long time. Familiar faces abound. I see Sir Ronnie aka Runnerforchrist a few feet from me. I finally get to meet him in person. The Team Bald Runner guys are right next to me . They're actually amiable! I always had this impression that they were stern and warrior-like in nature. So what gives? Let's give a quick recap.

Pat, Sir Ronnie and unnamed ultraman enjoying some grub

Chillin' out

The Emcee
Better known as the guy behind the Run For Change site, Eric Passion aka Passion Runner was the capable master of ceremonies. He had the chutzpah to withstand several withering feedback screeches from a whacked out mic, his crisp quips quickly diverting the attention of the 60 or so people at UP's Restaurant of Choice.

That's half of Eric and ... . uh, half a head.

I need to go back here yum

The Race Di rectors

Ian and Neville were sharp and on point in explaining routes, rules, regulations to the group. After the orientation, you would get the impression that ultra runners have their own brotherhood, their own ubuntu.
Main takeaway - leave ultra runners out there, and they would know what to do.

Ian with screeching mic hard at work

Neville getting his point across

Marathon Man

So he's the owner of Botak. The I remembered I had seen him before, during the CLP for Condura. A true running luminary, he has paved the way for ultramarathons in our country, pulling off unfathomable Trans- Europe and Trans-USA runs at a time when I was merely learning how to walk. The audience was enthralled as a slideshow showcased the highlights of his life's magnum opus. This guy could do the impossible... He didn't let anything or anyone stop him from achieving that. Nothing could ... ...

Man of the Hour

3,000 miles is no laughing matter
This is the part where you cringe

Then it hit me. Back in the day, when he told people that he would run 3,000 miles , 65 km a day, people would have told him he was crazy. That he was risking long term injury. They may have laughed at him. Mocked him even. Said it couldn't be done. Admittedly, he's a man of few words. so he just went out and did it. Just keep running, keep moving forward. No quitting.

I have always believed in the power of the human spirit, that anyone can achieve anything if they put their minds to it. I teach inspirational leadership to college freshmen, and I expound on theories which hover around the lines of something we call " a place with no limits". That if you want to achieve something, it CAN be done if you just... believe.

I am intrigued, and I would want to put my theory to the test against this rare showcase of human endurance. It's a mindset. A mindset that not everyone will agree to, but if wielded properly could produce spectacular results. When push comes to shove, can the mental overcome the physical?

100 grueling kilometers. 2 cities. Once the urge kicks in to throw in the towel... .

I'll just keep running, keep moving forward.

No quitting.

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The BOTAK CLP : How A Running Icon Made Me Change My Mind + Time