“Happy birthday to us, happy birthday to us…”
Our Delhi-based ASICS Running Club turned a year old this week, and so this chilly morning we celebrated. By eating.
Oh, yeah, right, and by running as well. Of course we ran 😛
No we did, truly, and we also did some super new strengthening drills – more anon – but today was more about saying a HUGE thank you to our young & devoted Coach, Vijay Shukla, who is the glue binding us all together.
Many of you reading this may not know the people involved, so I won’t go into too much personal detail, but will rather talk in generalities about what (I think) makes a good Coach.
The thing I have loved about this group from Day One has been the complete absence of ego.
We have no star runners.
Well, of course we do.
We have some fabulously talented runners, but there are no airs and graces, no special treatment, and Coach is as interested in and attentive of the weaker runners like yours truly, as he is of the faster, fitter runners.
The world of running in Delhi (where I live) is still relatively small, and it is also still quite a relatively new sport, but even so, there are egos and personalities out there.
But none of that in our running club.
It is NEVER about Coach.
lt is aways about us, and it is always about all of us. Coach is equally encouraging/equally hard/equally strict with everyone, without any discrimination. And it was clear from the lovely speeches runners made this morning, that this attitude is greatly appreciated.
Other than my “starter kit” (& sadly short-lived) running group of 16 women, where I learned to run, I’ve never really been in a running group before, so have no point of comparison. But what I do know is that my current gang celebrates everyone’s success with equal joy.
Like today, when Coach presented a pair of shoes to Sushil Panna, one of the fastest and most low-key members of the group, and a loud cheer greeted the news:
And yes, that undoubtedly speaks to the nature of the women and men in the group, but it also because our Coach has not fostered an atmosphere of ego. As I said, it’s all about us, the runners.
Every time we set out on our warm up run, Coach invariably says something like “stick together, and run as a team”. It’s an attitude he fosters, and it’s one of the things that makes this group so nice to be with.
So, happy first birthday to us 🙂
And lucky us for having a coach who cares about us so much.