From overcoming the grief of losing one of his dearest to cancer, to running a chiropractic practice while training twice a day, national-marathoner, Ashley Liew, has been in the sports for 13 years since the day he started with nothing more than an intent to trim the flab.
Today, he is a multiple Stanchart Singapore Marathon podium finisher and one of Singapore’s fastest marathon runner. How did Ashley stay focused and achieve all this amidst the ups and downs he has gone through? Ashley shares his winning mindset on The Champion’s Mind with 938NOW radio host Paul Sng. Below are some excerpts from the interview.
“I run in memory of her.”
Ashley was quick to point out who he thinks of whenever he is pounding the gravel beneath his feet one step at a time. His mother passed away in 2010 and she has always been the biggest influence on his life. Always a soft spoken but a staunch supporter of all my endeavours, she had supported him at races as far away as the 2008 Ironman 70.3 World Championships in Florida. Her passing was hard on the family especially when her health took a sudden unexpected turn for the worse. At one point Ashley even contemplated taking the rest of the university term off and foregoing my upcoming competitions. Then he thought about what she would have wanted him to do, which was to make the most of what he has been blessed with. Ashley believes he has taken on a lot of her qualities since her passing, especially humility and a sense of quiet determination, so a big part of my running is in memory of her.
“How you do anything in life (even for a split moment) is how you do everything in life.”
Instead of a lifelong endless pursuit of the medals, grades, or career success, I like to focus on doing good during the “in between” moments, because life is ultimately a sum of the choices you make and hopefully, as athletes we can embody this spirit by exemplifying sportsmanship both on and off the field.
“Don’t limit your challenges, challenge your limits.”
Another takeaway I have is that actions follow thoughts. So it is important that we should think positively rather than ruminate on self-defeating ones. For example, in the midst of a difficult race I’ve had moments where I tell myself – “I’ve got this” and “every step is a blessing”. If I were to say, “this isn’t my day” or “why am I doing this”, I am already framing my behavior to become a self-fulling prophesy. The brain can’t differentiate between “do” or “don’t”, it just processes that thought and it manifests in our actions.
If you’ll like to catch the repeat podcast just click here.
You can also access the interview transcript here!