Article from the Sun daily by Yeo Chia Hui (posted on 9th June 2015)
IT'S easy to get interested in something, but what's difficult is to keep this passion going strong when one faces life's relentless daily grind. Hence, while it may seem absurd that someone can still have the energy and motivation to run after a long day at work, Edan Syah proved that the notion may seem uncommon but it's not entirely impossible.
"I call myself a citizen runner because I have a job yet I still want to improve myself when it comes to running. I normally train at night after I finish my work or sometimes both before and after, and I only give myself one day off in a week," said the 27 year-old product specialist and head trainer at Athlete's Circle, adding that he has a different routine and training intensity for each day.
One of August Man Malaysia's Men of the Year in 2011, Edan qualified for the 42km Boston Marathon 2015 in which he achieved a ranking of 354 out of 26,610 runners. Not only that, he was also the youngest Malaysian to finish below 2'42. Due to harsh weather conditions in Boston, he clocked 2'41:55 which was three seconds off his personal best of 2'41:52. This however has only spurred him to try harder next time.
What is your proudest achievement?
After completing the Hong Kong marathon in February last year, I found out that I've been ranked as the third fastest marathon runner in the country by the Malaysia Athletic Federation (MAF). It was unexpected because my goal has always been just to improve and challenge myself, thus, to be ranked in the top five feels great.
Every time you cross the finish line, what is the first thing that you do?
Normally, I'd look at my watch during the last one kilometre so I sort of know how I'm faring. To me, the finish line does not signify the end but rather how I know I can do better than this. For some people when they finish one marathon they might think that they've had enough, whereas I personally believe that the finish line only signifies the beginning of another journey. I don't know what my future path is but I know that when I cross the finish line, there's something more for me to achieve and I always have faith in this.
Having participated in so many marathons, which was the most memorable one?
It has to be the Boston Marathon because of the adrenaline rush and marathon fever there. A week before the race and you could already see that the environment was very different because of the crowd support. The people there are very supportive of running and everyone would go into the town to support the race – even in the rain, they'd support you along the road for the whole 42km. And I think this is why people always say that, ''There are other races around but there's only one Boston Marathon."
When the going gets tough, what keeps you motivated?
I'll think about how I have prepared for the race, the journey that I've started and also everyone who has been together with me to achieve my dream. Their support gives me the strength to go on.
Can you give some advice to those who are keen to take up running?
Always come back to your mission and vision on why you run. It's easy to get lost along the way, but if you can focus on your goal then you will know what it is that you want to achieve. It's also a lot to do with training smart. We are not full-time athletes so we have our own jobs and social life to attend to, so what's important is to train smart and always listen to your body when you train.