Media/Sponsorship/Intrinsic Motivation – My former Coach Alan Guilder Posted on January 30, 2018

By Rameshon


Picture 1 – Media can make one lose direction if it is  extrinsically motivated

Directly, when I came back from Loughborough University, my club told me that the committee members would like to see and wonder why I do not want to run for my club. There were so many races and I wanted to concentrate on a few of them and I did not want to get any kind of burnout sensation. There was a time, I had experienced  burnout and that made me not to train for some time.

During the meeting, as an athlete, I realised we did very well in running performance and that NIKE came forward to sponsor our club. We had a lot of talented runners.  We got a huge amount of $300,000 from NIKE. A committee member told me this. The endorsement was given because of consistency of high performance by us. However, due to admin matter or something, even when I raised it up in the meeting, this was found to be true. We did not get the support of $300,000, $$270,000 in kind and $30,000 in cash (five year contract). Finally, after my speaking up, some runners only got an outdated NIKE racer from our club. We should take note from here that if we perform well enough, endorsement just comes. All the Shoe Companies and significant others, for example, a philantrophist, a donor, or a charitable person may come forward support our performance.

Having said that, I also want to talk about the good values imparted by   my former coach, Alan Guilder. I was running with Tim Dickinson (personal best for marathon 2hr 23min) and Sonia MacGeorge (once I saw her do 4min 05sec in Grand Prix in a European country, Chris Mac George, her husband, has a personal best time of 3hr 38min, 1500m), during our early morning runs.

Familiarity breeds contempt and I thought that Coach Alan was just a normal runner only. Then, I realised that he has brought me for races that I myself can see him coming first. He was actually an excellent runner. It was so inspiring to see my own coach setting example and demonstrating that he can do well in races, while training with me, Tim and Sonia.

Alan has never bragged about himself on his achievement and he has a 13min 32sec for 5km as a personal best when he was studying in Loughborough University.

One day, I told him on races and that he can come in first and he told me that the way he think and the people think are different. He uses the sentence, ” It does not fit my plan, Ram!.” He believed in improvement in timing rather than winning. 

Coach Alan told me that people are funny. He said that there was once he ran and did not do well but he came in first for the race and the news came out in the papers. He was surprised that people told that his performance was good. At the same time, on another occasion, there was once when he did very well and he did not get top 10, and the news did not come out in the paper, the people asked, “What happened, what happened?” He said that it shows how ignorant people are to see the truth on performance improvement.  

I was proud of my former coach, Coach Alan, as for him, prizes, popularity and awards and rewards does not matter. Coach Alan is a person who is intrinsically motivated, and he is never extrinsically motivated by external things, to make him run for free t-shirt, money etc to motivate him in running. 

Edited by Tan Mariviv