LIV3LY: When did you start running and what made you decide to start?
Desmond: My ego! HAHAHA, back then the canoe kids are the coolest in school, but I’m pretty much a rebel so I tried flipping things around by joining Track & Field. Our club was almost perishing but it got revived with the work of multiple generations of sweat, tears, and shorts. Since then, I was hooked and had never looked back!
LIV3LY: What keeps you motivated to run (almost every day)?
Desmond: Mainly it is a combination of the competitive streak, the excitement of how much I can do, and the motivation around me. Let’s face it, the physical & structural landscape of Singapore also made it easy to lace-up and go!
LIV3LY: We have seen that you are regularly on race podiums. What is your proudest achievement so far?
Desmond: In the past my proudest achievements were how fast I run, but now it revolves around how fast I can run given my circumstances. Some races get you to the podium easier, but that’s not much fun. Best are the races filled with people around your standard, so that you can be pushed and post-race, friends made!
Loads of lessons to be learned on and off the podium, penning them down in a separate article. Stay tuned!
My proudest achievement has to be debuting the 21km almost a year into the workforce with a decent timing, and perhaps year end when I came back from a series of mishaps (which includes a dropout race ) to become the 2XU Compression Night Run Champion!**
**Note: 2XU Compression Night Run was in Putrajaya, Malaysia
LIV3LY: What are some of the most challenging aspects of distance running?
Desmond: I feel that consistent hard-work is not just a must, but to balance it with ample recovery and a good balance of injury avoidance. You see many athletes performing poorly, perhaps because of monster workouts/ mileage/ pace (for long runs).
The challenge and the fun part of it is not to give up in the face of these frustrations, but to continue to learn and grow.
LIV3LY: Any role models in the running scene?
Desmond: In the international scene, my idol is actually Allyson Felix, a sprinter! I admire her for her humility, work ethics, and consistency. Locally, Dr Mok Ying Ren has been a source of inspiration perhaps not just for me, but for us all. Juggling work and performing at this level is simply unthinkable – WOW!
LIV3LY: What do you think is a key success to running, and how does it apply to your life?
Desmond: I don’t think I’ve found it yet, but it seems like going with the flow is something people don’t do. If you have less time/ tired, run less. If you are bored, swim instead. It is just doing things to the best of your abilities given your circumstances.
In life, don’t worry about the weather i.e. things you can’t control. Things just fall in place somehow.
LIV3LY: Complete this sentence: 'Without running, I.....'
Desmond: Would be partying and still be running away from life’s responsibilities HAHA. Seriously though, I hope to find another hobby to be obsessed about, though it’s pretty unimaginable now.
LIV3LY: Thanks Desmond for sharing your views! We hope we haven’t taken up too much of your time away from ‘partying’! Have fun, and all the best for your future races!