Inspired by the writing frenzy generated by the over-heated competition that is the [ :: NaNoWriMo :: ], I have decided to dust the thick layer of mold off my series of unfortunate events, and to kick-start my sad story.
I had remedial training this Saturday, and this was done under the shadow of the glee those who had just passed their test on Friday. I felt a little upset at my poor performance, but credit goes to today's training, that I have finally come to realise the mental state that had previously ensured my peak performances in the past.
In fact, it was quite a coincidence that I re-discovered it at all, since I was quite frustrated at being one of the few to be still under the spectre of having to go through the standard obstacle course.
I ran the first 2 km as the warm up round, and I started walking at the 1.5 km mark, which was quite disappointing. As the Officer Commanding put it to me before, I didn't look tired or over-worked, so it must have been a mental block. I have never disagreed with him on that. I knew that by recovering my breath, I could start running again, until I lose my momentum again just metres down the road.
I knew that this couldn't be my maximum performance, so I decided to try a new tack.
For the next 3 rounds of 800 metres, we were to sprint up and down the road, beating the time of 4:30. For the first round, I tried to burst all my energy in the first lap, which severly crippled my finishing run. I came back last, sporting stiches around my left waist, and severly out of breath. Plus, Friday's dinner threatened to come out of my rear. I ended up paying a visit to the toilet, which made me miss the second round. But the loo-trip proved rewarding.
I realised that the key to my peak performance laid simply upon my legs. I only had to concentrate on it, and continually seeking to understand the fatigue that builds up in all physical activities: that is sufficient enough to take my mind off the breathlessness, and pull myself along for a much longer period of time.
I tried this re-discovery for the third round. As I sprinted, I still had my stiches, I still felt breathless, my legs were still burning as usual, but I was struck by a new thought: that I was able to tolerate it ¡ª for the very first time since a long time ago! To prove to myself that my old fitness is back, I reached the end point far earlier than anybody else.
The rest of the training session suddenly became that much easier for me. I could clear the obstacles faster, recover with the swiftness of a springboard, and cut through the tough ones like a hot wire through butter. Need I say I came back first again? (Ok, so I didn't take into account the fact that the few who participated today were not exactly expected to pass anytime soon. But, don't you agree that it is a major achievement?)
Watch out, Sylvester. I am going for the company best timing, 9:02
P.S. If you were wondering, I wrote this post in a record time of 11 minutes, without spell-check, nor stopping to read whatever I have streamed out on the keyboard. All in the name and honour, and of course the spirit of NaNoWriMo! (I won't be doing a 50, 000 word novel though. This is the best tribute I could spare, so enjoy!)