Something happened yesterday that cannot be explained. On Sunday, 9 out of the 10 runners ran more laps than they had the day before. The only one who didn’t run more laps on Sunday was Surasa ,who ran exactly 110 laps the same as she has run every day for the past week. What make this peculiar event noteworthy is that the average lap numbers didn’t just go up a little, they went up a lot. Averaged out over the 9 runners it works out to be 7 more laps per person than the previous day.
Now if that seems like a lot you are right. In some cases there were big jumps that helped bump up the average. Purna Samarpan, now recovering from a cold went from 85 laps to 110, adding a whopping 25 to the count. Pradeep who had an off day on Saturday went from 92 to 111. I am not a statistician but I am sure the odds of such an event happening are off the charts, particularly when you consider that everyone has been out here for 15 days now.
If the weather had somehow improved in any way from the day before than the source of renewed vigor in the runners legs could be identified, but it didn’t. Essentially the weather conditions on Sunday were identical to Saturday. Same temperature, humidity, wind and all the usual weather data.That on Sunday there was less distractions from traffic and people possibly, but certainly it couldn’t have accounted for that much of an improvement.
My own theory, at least the one that seems to make any kind of sense at all is that you had 4 runners yesterday who were the first to push through the 1000 mile mark. Now there will be 4 digits beside each of their names instead of 3. There is still more than 2000 miles and 2/3rds of the race to go but it is still something satisfyingly symbolic It in some way demystifies the distance and perhaps you can really feel that from now on the impossible goal in front of you is from now on just a little less impossible. Mentally at least the numbers crunch just that more easily.
The other important thing to understand is that everyone who runs is acutely tuned to everyone else. They are a family and a team climbing up into stratospheric levels that few can even possibly imagine. When energy and motivation are high everyone feels it. Just as when someone is suffering than they all collectively feel and identify with the suffering and pain as well. What happens here is not one person surpassing someone else but rather how they all collectively share each others victory. For perhaps nestled in the heart of self transcendence itself is something really special. Something, that once you have stepped past all the mundane numbers and all the facts, is what we all are striving for, oneness with the universal goal.