In the past, when I was training in Singapore, usually I did not take holidays, especially during November and December period. It is known as a crucial period for runners who aspire to do well. My experience is that, after doing the November/December training, usually, there is this energy in me to take the year easily by being very relaxed. People told me that rarely I get angry. I believe that it came from my running pursuit.
I have seen many who go for holidays for a longer period of time, during the November and December holidays. After the holidays, I found that they tell me that they had been very busy travelling and they hardly had time to rest, and, in fact recover, during the holiday. When they come back from holiday, they narrate to me that they actually need another holiday to recover from the holiday that they had spent.
Hence, I feel that running can be a good way to relax from life's stress. Two months of easy running does make you quiet and to go within oneself to feel peaceful and appreciate life. Maybe, the oxygen in MacRitchie Reservoir make one to think better. My desires were less, to the point that I did not feel the lack of something is making me sad.
When I was training seriously at secondary four, while I was in St Joseph's Institution, even when my mother argue with me, I tend to give in to her argument. Before that in much younger days, I used to argue my way out and she got tired out at the end of the day. Basically, it made me to be an observer, like an out of order vending machine, not to entertain in argument as it really can sap one's energy. I became from a noisy person to a silent person.
Another important point of November and December holiday training is that, usually, I felt myself improving throughout the year. Ganesan and I were not National Record holders in the past, however, we were aspiring to be one in the future. No one knew that we could do it. We did not know also but we were believing in ourselves, and we finally we achieved it. It is important to believe in oneself that one can do it. That is the first starting point of improving oneself in running.
Also, a point to note is that Ganesan and I will always keep discussing about running and nothing else. It was all about how to improve and what food to take etc. Ganesan came from East Payoh Secondary, and he went to Singapore Technical Institute. Then, my friend Thomas Tan from Ngee Ann told me that it would be good for N. Ganesan to come over to his Polytechnic. My friend was a Sports Officer at that time. I shared this with Ganesan and he was very happy and he was yearning to improve in his academic pursuits as well. Sports gave him an opportunity to improve in life. He got in finally. In Polytechnic he did 15m 06sec for 5km. Later on,he went to Loughborough University and did his degree. Eventually, he became a Physical Education teacher in Bukit View and right now he is doing his Masters Programme in NIE.
Hence, running helped both of us in studies.