Last June 5, a handful of running enthusiasts went into an event organized by Safeguard Active. This is to see who can withstand or break Coach Rio Dela Cruz's 20 meter sprint time of 2.3 seconds. A lot took the challenge, including celebrities and seasoned runners. In the end, the top five were chosen to compete with Coach Rio and among those five, one was able to reach the goal of not only beating the great running coach's time, but also in an actual sprint race.
Events like these makes you realize the wonders done through athletics. Through running and generally in the field of sports, miracles happen inside an athlete whether it be an achievement, going through adversity or simply the training and the journey through that moment of glory. Inside the annals of sports history, there have been lots of stories told in epic and legendary proportions namely, the chosen ones, those who exemplify greatness like the Jordans, the Bolts, the Phelphs, the Gretzkys and the list goes on and on. It's like the greats are tailor made with their destiny set. That leaves the rest of us, the guys these legends dominate through.
However there is a certain group of people who refuse to be grabbed in the norm, the underdogs. These are the people not expected to do anything impactful, the people that should just be warming the benches cheering and giving cups of water, those who should just go by their day jobs, those who the analysts laugh at and are being written off. This is about them and how they were able to tackle adversity to rise to the challenge and win. Their stories told gives us a guiding example on how hard the perceived norm has to be and how they had overcome.
Their stories have transcended as a huge selling point in mass media. Books, movies and TV series just to name a few. Here are some famous underdogs that have transcended to become an inspiration for all of us, Pop culture wise. Underdogs do sound fine when it comes to movies, fortunately they aren't just limited to the movies. Here are some real life examples:
The Olympic games in London may have already ended, but their stories will live on. No, I am not talking only about those who claim dominance, like the NBA stars once again winning gold through their superior talent or Phelps breaking the gold medal record. I'm talking about certain individuals who shouldn't even be there or should have been escorted out of the playing field.
Twenty years ago in Barcelona, Sprinter Derek Redmond of Great Britain was one of the favorites to win a medal at the 400 meter dash event. However at the middle of the track, he torn his hamstring which led him to to hop and eventually lie down in pain. Instead of bowing out from the race, He still limped through the finished line with the help of his father shoving down security who wants him to stay down. The crowd gave him a standing ovation and the moment has become one of the brightest moments in Olympic history.
This is the father and son tandem of Rick and Dick Hoyt, a legend in running and triathlon circles. Rick was diagnosed with cerebral palsy that limited his movements. Rather than being kept in an institution, Rick was taught how to live a full life. One day he asked his dad to compete in a triathlon and without hesitation, the dad agreed to it. Since then, the duo had competed to countless marathons, duathlons and triathlons altogether.
Rather than being jailed to the walls of mediocrity, these individuals decided to break the norm and defy the odds. Being a real life inspiration to us all. Teaching us to never settle and never quit.
After all, these stories are my inspiration with all the athletic pursuits I have done. Through the past 2 years I have been joining countless fun runs, gym training, basketball games, even rugby training. Sometimes to the tune of running through the storm (Milo 2011, RU2 2012) or having 2 races in a day ( PBA Fun Run, Camp Run) the thought of attaining those "little miracles" make it feel that we commoners can also rise to the occasion given the proper dedication and attitude.
This year, I even made a training diary to help focus and stay motivated. As of today, for the year 2012, I had ran a total of 439 Kilometers, losing 13 pounds and achieving new personal bests for 10k, 15k, and 16k distances. After training, I make sure to practice proper hygiene with Safeguard active lying in my gym bag since health is important and to prevent illnesses which can hinder me from training and competing. Remember, Safeguard Active won’t let bad hygiene distract you from exceeding your athletic limitations and in beating your personal best!