Saturday, January 15, 2011

Hey, Wait For Me...

By Frank

You run and run, enjoying the sights and the every breath you take and suddenly you ask yourself "Where is everyone?". "Where am I?". I'm sure most of us were newbies once and that includes me. It's certainly not easy to run in unexplored territory and not to mention doing it alone. And here comes the job of the "sweeper".

My first visit to the infamous Bukit Aman - Sri Hartamas route was back in year 2007. I was supposed to run 30KM but ended up running only 10KM and then getting lost. The rest had left on their own pace leaving myself and Rashid, both newbies that time scratching our heads on how to get back to Bukit Aman. It took us near to 2 hours to find ourselves back and since then, my view on running long distance has change, at least with newbies around.

Yes, I don't deny I have my own favourite comfortable pace to run with. However, if I were to run with newbies or those who had not run that particular route before, I will try my best to guide them, if not to take on the duty as the "sweeper". The "sweeper" in my own words is to guide the slowest runner safely back to where we started. I had taken this role many times and just recently again as I had the chance to run with new friends. It isn't easy to run a pace that I'm not comfortable with, but the satisfaction gained from guiding friends is priceless. A simple thank you and gesture of appreciation is gained sometimes, but inside me, something else, something satisfactory and priceless is what that is worth for.

I believe if the running community is to be succeeded by new bloods, "veterans" and "seniors" must set a good example for others to follow. We can't just whack the pace and let the newbies behind leaving them running like headless chickens. Just like children succeeding their parents, it will be these runners ruling the road one fine day.

I've received a few comments from newbies and slower runners saying that they can't run with me due to my pace. Try me and you will know! I won't elaborate further as a few friends who had ran with me will know. It's no fun running alone wondering how far ahead the others are especially when you are the back of the pack. Safety itself is compromise even with the guys so it doesn't take too much out of someone to try run in a group or perhaps to wait for the others. If all else fails, let's just hope someone will take on the role of a "sweeper". Run safe! ;)


Jamie said...

I sweep front you sweep back!

Frank@Runnerz said...

Yes yes. You be dragon head and I be the butt. 0_o

Anonymous said...

i m not sure i hv meet you, or u have helped me, but form newbies, we appreciate your help.just a simple clap, "are u ok", "you can do it"...can take us a long way.....all the best to u!!!