Ashley's Sharing Session
Ashley Liew has a personal best time of 2hr 32min 12sec, second overall in Men Open Category for New Orleans Marathon 2015.
On 20th of June 2015, during our Young Champions Programme session, Ashley Liew, 28, shared with our young athletes and parents about his 42 day experience in Kenya. He also spoke in summary on the importance of showing good sportsmanship in competition.
The experiences, especially in Kenya, shared by Ashley was truly an eye opener for all of us on how dedicated athletes train and achieve excellence.
I hope that, after reading the article, athletes will choose the right path to success and also remember that winning should be coupled with values, such as honesty, gratitude, humility and most importantly your character. Character is will and I believe that with will we can achieve anything.
8 Lessons shared by Ashley
Lesson No 1: Respect
No matter how remarkable a runner you may be when we converse with others we should never have an air. Ashley said that before they start their training in Kenya that they would have a handshake with their fellow runners and would ask each other how are they.
Ashley also shared with us, "Kenyans also have many role models, from regional champions to world champions that they continually respect and look up to. Kids there grow up aspiring to be like them."
Lesson No 2: Self Belief
Believe you can be the best and nothing but the best you can be.
Ashley shared with us that we should always believe that one day we can be the best but to also remain humble no matter how much we achieve. Sometimes when we do not meet our time trial targets or having an injury we should not be downhearted but instead just keep the spirits high and continue with a positive attitude.
When a record holder meets up with a progressing elite runner he would just say, “Do not worry, I believe one day you can be the best too.” Most of the times these world record holders were also once at the bottom and slowly made their way up.
Lesson No 3: Commitment
Giving all our best
Being committed meaning coming down for all training and doing everything which is given to you even if it is going at a pace of 7 minutes per kilometer.
Kenyans are even committed to taking full rest and recovery. They take naps and sleep very seriously, a handful even going the extreme of sleeping more than 10 hours a day in total !”
Lesson No 4: Sacrifices
In the town of Iten where Ashley had trained, it had a total population of only 5,000 people but the amazing thing is 3,000 of them are full time runners. Which means out of every 5 people 3 of them are professional athletes. Most of these runners have no other source of income, their income is solely based on the prize money they win in the races they run internationally. They relinquish their loved ones and family members and spend their time training in a camp with a certain number of months committed for running. As these runners have no other source of income.
Lesson No 5: Humility
Running is about growth, there is always room for improvement.
No successful athlete will walk around with thoughts such as “I am a Champion” or “I am the best”. When one walks around with such a pride and ego, you are limiting yourself as you always think you are the best. Only when you are humble you will realise that you still have a lot to learn and many more areas you could improve in to reach greater heights.
Lesson No 6: Integrity
Athletes taking drugs to enhance sporting performance is on an upward trend. Even high profiled Kenyan athletes who are looking for a quick fix start to consume drugs. As this is illegal when athletes are caught positive for drugs through the doping test they will be banned from taking part in any competition for several years. Taking drugs not only affects you and your loved ones but also your health intensely. Most importantly in tarnishes the name of the country and family.
Lesson No 7: Focus
Being Focused- Sounds simpler, easier said
Starting school 8 am in the morning and finishing at 6pm and also doing my morning and evening run every single day without fail is not easy task. As Ashley has very limited hours to study he makes sure he is really focused and not get distracted by things such as smartphones, Facebook and television. Ashley also strongly believes the number of hours spent studying is important however what’s more crucial the quality of how he spent his time studying.
Lesson No 8: Sportsmanship
During the SEA GAMES held on the 7th of June 2015, Ashley Liew took part in the Men's Marathon Race.
During the race at one point when the runners had to make a U-Turn they ended up going straight but Ashley was the only one who made the right turn. At this point of time Ashley had a 50 Meters lead which may have given him a chance of a podium finish, a dream every runner that takes will have.
Next Issue - Flexifitness Athlete Andreas Wenger wins Kona Marathon 2015 in Hawaii.