Text: Chia-Yi Lee
Photo: Jung-Hui Hsu
Translation: J.B. Willis, Steve J. Lin
This year’s 10 Kilometer Run took place at 6:30 a.m. on March 23, and this was the 25th consecutive year that TCU has sponsored this event. A total of 626 attendees, including students, staff, faculty members, alumni, Tzu-Cheng dads and Yi-Te moms, took part in the run. Completing the 10 Kilometer Run is one of the graduation requirements, and male students need to finish it within 80 minutes, while it’s 90 minutes for female students. On this day, it was a bit cool and quite suitable for running. The run started right after president Pen-Jung Wang fired the starting gun, and then runners headed for Jing Si Abode from Tzu Chi University.
On the way to Jing Si abode, TCU set up numerous stands, where Tzu-Cheng dads, Yi-Te moms and students were there to offer drinking water and recharge the runners. International students from the US, Germany, Japan, Slovakia and South Africa felt amazed to take part in this event. Two students are from Slovakia, and they ran side-by-side. Participating in the 10 Kilometer Run was a brand new experience for them and they were very happy to do it. From TCU to Jing Si Abode, the surrounding sceneries were beautiful, runners did it joyfully, while many people encouraged them along the way, so they didn’t feel tired at all.
Zhe-Bin Lin took only 33 minutes 30 seconds to complete the whole course and he was the fastest runner. He came to TCU in 2009 and graduated in 2016. While studying at TCU, he was also the fastest runner in 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2014. Zhe-Bin is now a physician working at Dalin Tzu Chi General Hospital. Since graduating from TCU in 2016, he had never attended the event until this year. Looking back to his college era, his running drive came from the fact that he didn’t want to lag behind his peers. Physician’s duties take a lot of his time, thus it cut his running time significantly. Near the end of 2018, a colleague invited him to attend this year’s event, and he decided to do it, so he started sparing more time for running. Running is easy for him, but running alone is a little boring, and he prefers to run with others. He is grateful that TCU sponsors this event every year, so participants can run with others.
Many students have unforgettable memories from participating in this event. For more than ten Social Work seniors, this 10 Kilometer Run will be their last, therefore they cherished this opportunity to run together. Rui-Zhe Zhang is a person whose muscles on the left side of his body isn’t so controllable, because of a left brain injury, which occurred when he was small. No matter how hard it was, he completed the 10 kilometers by running and walking. In order to strengthen muscles on the right side of his body, he uses the weight training facilities regularly. He is very interested in evaluating his progress, consequently he chose to join the 10 Kilometer Run every year. His progress has been obvious in that he went from 500th place in his freshman year to 123rd place this year. In his sophomore year, he was in 250th place, though he was absent in the junior year due to an injury.
The destination of 10 Kilometer Run was Jing Si Abode. A medical senior named Cheng-Hao used to spend his leisure time watching TV and reading comics, but not anymore. In his sophomore year, he participated in the 10 Kilometer Run, and since then, he decided to exercise regularly. As a result, his physical well-being is enhanced and his willpower is stronger. Home-styled breakfasts prepared by Jing Si Abode Masters, along with Tzu-Cheng dads and Yi-Te moms, were placed in Jing Si Abode for runners to enjoy. After arriving at Jing Si Abode, Cheng-Hao enjoyed his breakfast like everybody else. He anticipates being very busy next year, so he seized the opportunity to run 10 kilometers this year.
The awards were presented at Jing Si Abode. Kaici Morishita is from Japan and Sophia Smolic is from Germany, and they were the fastest runners among the male students and female students, respectively. Morishita is a student currently studying in the Chinese Language Center and getting ready to apply for his undergraduate program. He has had some dilemmas lately, hence he decided to do regular exercise to calm his mind and enable him to be more focused.
Duei Tsai, a Tzu-Cheng dad and former Minister of Transportation, is seventy years old. He spent only one hour and four minutes to complete the course, and was the winner among those in the sixty-year-old group. At Jing Si Abode, Master De Chen shared the observation that while running, we would stay away from TVs, put cellular phones aside, and focus on running. Thus running is a very good gift that we give to ourselves. Master De Chen was grateful to Tzu-Cheng dads and Yi-Te moms who set aside their personal matters, to be with our students and run with them. These dads and moms guided our students by their personal examples.
TCU has sponsored this annual 10 Kilometer Run since its inception in 1994. Director of the Center for Physical Education Sen-Fang Huang mentioned that for many of our students, the 10 Kilometer Run is an unforgettable memory, and is a noticeable item in their resumes. Since regular exercise is good for our physical health and helpful to clear our minds, we can choose to exercise every day and join the 10 Kilometer Run every year.