My name is Faris Ahmed and I am a sophomore at The Ohio State University majoring in Biomedical Engineering in addition to pre-med. I am from Stow, Ohio. I am a Ping-Pong playing, running fanatic. That’s probably why people mistakenly call me Forest. Aside from those obvious similarities, just like Forest Gump, once I started running I couldn’t stop…. (Flashback)
It was the summer before my freshman year of high school. Tennis was my life. It was what I spent most of my time practicing, talking, and thinking about. I had been playing for about 7 years before and I was getting ready to join the high school team in the spring. The coach’s and my own expectation was that I would immediately start on varsity and possibly be the number one player. However, expectations can shatter in a blink of an eye.
My nature is to always strive for better. What can I do in addition to what I already am doing to get better? I was lacking in endurance and stamina, so what better way to improve that than to run? Not only did I start to run but I also joined the high school cross-country team since it didn’t interfere with the tennis season in the spring. I was afraid that every one who did cross-country in middle school would be a whole lot faster than me so I trained hard everyday. I followed the coach’s schedule but I ran it as fast as I could. Once the official season started I was the fastest freshman and 10th on the team. The coach rested the top 3 runners for the first race, so I ran in the varsity race for my first race. I peaked early and only dropped 15 seconds throughout the whole season. At the end of the season our coach always held individual meetings with us to assess how our season went and to talk about goals for the next season. The next season was track, but it would be tennis season for me. The coach understood my decision to do tennis, however he asked me to consider track. My school didn’t allow us to do multiple sports in a season so I was left to choose. I really did want to run track but I also didn’t want to quit tennis. After many weeks of thinking and debating I finally chose track…
Later reminiscing about it, I realized that deep down I had made my decision long before it came time to choose. I was addicted to running within the first month of starting and I continued with cross-country and track all four years of high school without ever looking back and having regret. It’s amazing to think that for years I expected to grab the number one spot on the tennis team, but that seems like a daze now, because just like Forest Gump: once I started running I couldn’t stop, and as you can see I didn’t.
After deciding to attend Ohio State, I joined the Running Club in hopes of continuing to competitively run. The Running Club is a great opportunity for exactly that and I am looking forward to the direction that the Club is heading.
Running is definitely a huge part of my life, from the friends I’ve made to even the major I’m studying. It has become such a habit in my life that it helps to be reminded with the occasional, “Run Faris run!”