1.59.40: Kipchoge Runs 42km Marathon Under Two Hours
Eliud Kipchoge, the world marathon record holder, has shattered the sub-two-hour barrier in the 42 kilometres marathon.
The race, which was held in Vienna, Austria, included 41 pace-setters who came into the race to maintain a record-breaking tempo and push the champ towards breaking the hitherto ‘unbreakable’ record.
At 1.59.40 (1 hour, 59 minutes and 40 seconds), Kipchoge has proven that indeed, no human is limited.
The other human to achieve a similar feat was Roger Bannister, who, in 1954, shattered the 4-minute mile record. Like Roger Bannister before him, #Eliud #Kipchoge has broken a barrier that hitherto many believed couldn’t be broken. He has definitely demonstrated to all the limitless potential God put in us at creation.
Kipchoge’s slogan for this history-making attempt was ‘no human is limited’, or simply hashtag, #NoHumanIsLimited. This goes to prove what God tells us in His Word: ‘as one thinks in his heart, so is he’. Roger Bannister and Eliud Kipchoge have shown us that ‘nothing is impossible to them that believe.’
Like in the days of Roger Bannister, many believed the sub-two-hour record was impossible. But Eliud was adamant that no one was going to set limits for him. In an interview before the race, he said: ‘no one sets a limit. Limits are happening in people’s minds.’ This is the mark of a true champion. Never allow anyone to set limits for you, not even you! So, what do we learn from Kipchoge’s victory?
1. There Will Always Be Naysayers
In the race of life, there are many who won’t believe in your quest for greatness. Others will dismiss your attempts at greatness as ‘folly’, ‘impossible’, and of ‘no consequence’. When Eliud Kipchoge was asked to comment about people who referred to his attempt as ‘folly’, he replied, “I respect everybody’s thoughts, and I hope they respect mine, too. The law of nature cannot allow all of us to come together.” In other words, not everyone will agree and or support your quest for greatness. And that’s okay since that’s how it is in this world. Always remember to run your race; your way.
2. To Win, You Must Have the Right Mental Attitude
Eliud Kipchoge ran under the slogan, “I believe no human is limited.” This was his mental state before, during and after the race. He knew it wasn’t going to be an easy race, but he nonetheless believed it was within reach. This belief in his limitless potential propelled him forward as his feet pounded on the tracks towards the ‘finish’ line. The only limits you have to contend with are those you set for yourself. People may set mental roadblocks along your path, but those are theirs, not yours. If you believe you can, you’re already victorious; what remains is to demonstrate it to the rest of the world.
3. Victory is a Culmination of Hours, Days, Months, and Years of Training
A look at Kipchoge’s running record reveals his win was not by fluke. Referred to as “the greatest marathoner of the modern era,” it was not by fluke Eliud Kipchoge was the obvious choice for an under 2-hour record marathon race. He had won twelve of thirteen marathons he participated in. The only time he lost, he came second to Wilson Kipsang Kiprotich during the Berlin Marathon in 2013 when the world record was broken. In spite of the ‘controlled environment’ in which he broke the under two-hour marathon record, he was the most prepared. He also had the best chance of achieving what was hitherto considered impossible. In the words of a former pop singer, he was “simply the best” marathoner in the world.
To attain success in life, you’ve got to put in the work. Success is a culmination of hours of practice, sometimes marked with failures and false starts, and steadfast trust in God. Ultimately, if you put in the time, break down self-imposed limitations, and trust God, you can achieve the impossible.
4. You Need the Right Environment to Break Records
When it comes to the race of life, the conditions must be right if you hope to attain greatness. Everything must be in perfect balance and harmony. Many believe Eliud Kipchoge wouldn’t have broken the sub-two-hour record were it not for the fact that the race was run in a ‘controlled environment’. Picture this! He won the race in perfect weather on a 90% flat terrain, using LASER guidance, wearing Nike’s ground-breaking shoes, and encouraged by 41 pace-setters whose brief was to maintain the tempo, break the wind for the champ, and encourage him forward.
To become the best version of you, surround yourself with people, pace-setters, who encourage you forward. The beautiful thing is that you have the best pace-setter the world has ever seen, Jesus Christ, the author and the finisher of your faith. The outcome of the race of your life has been fixed in your favour; by God Himself.
5. Teamwork is Critical for Success
The m and e in team don’t spell me. It merely means you cannot succeed alone. Yes, there are small victories you can attain on your own, but for the significant achievements, you will need to work with a team. Eliud Kipchoge wouldn’t have broken the marathon record without the support of the 41 pace-setters. He also needed the mammoth crowd cheering him on, his sponsors (INEOS) who set out to make sure he was in the best mental and physical state to compete. They also made sure the race was run in the most ideal conditions. And then there was his coach, his wife and children, immense global publicity, and 100% support from his home country, Kenya! The president of Kenya, Uhuru Kenyatta, even called him to pledge his support the day before the attempt. In short, everything was choreographed and synchronized to perfection. From the clearly-marked tracks that guided him towards the fastest lanes, the cyclists who kept up with him, so he doesn’t slow down to pick up water bottles, this was teamwork at its best.
Like in the case of Eliud Kipchoge, and Roger Bannister before him, success comes to those who believe “no human is limited”. It’s the total sum of hard work, cooperation and collaboration, resources, teamwork, family support, coaching, precision, and trust in God. When you’re in perfect alignment with the Will of God, nothing is impossible for you!
By Innocent Mwangi (firstname.lastname@example.org)