Daily Archives: June 11, 2013

Striving to Be at Least Part Kenyan.

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The Sawhili word harambee represents the idea of pulling together as one to accomplish a common good. It is a driving force in the Kenyan culture, represented above in their Coat of Arms. It permeates everything they do, including athletics. Positive thinking and a supportive community let them excel as some of the worlds most accomplished runners. A recent article written by David Alm in RunnersWorld introduced this concept to me. He suggests that being an elite runner and an elite athlete is more than just putting in the training, being naturally gifted, or being genetically predisposed to perform at the highest level. It requires a certain way of thinking, a certain psychology.  He writes:
This ethos [harambee] translates to their athletics, he says, inspiring hundreds—if not thousands—of young runners to join the fray each year. “People will look at other runners and say, ‘That guy is the same height as me, the same weight as me, comes from the same town as me. Maybe I can do it, too,'” he says. “So you have this group of positive-thinking people, and positivity spawns more positivity—people encouraging you to do more.”