Marathon of Learning

Vanessa Oshima

Vanessa Oshima had just started a challenging high-level job at Coca-Cola Japan, and was grumbling a bit to a visiting colleague named John Hackett. “No one is making work-life decisions but you,” Hackett responded. “Instead of finding excuses for not having what you want, find a way to have what you need.” She later learned that Hackett was a continuous runner, and had run every single day for a thousand days despite work, family responsibilities and 15-hour flights. Then in September 2012, Vanessa promised a friend with breast cancer that she would run five kilometers every day, outdoors, until the latter won her challenge with cancer. On day 259 her friend finished her treatment, but Vanessa has continued her roadwork and life learnings, including this: “Look for the tailwinds, keep your head down and power through the headwinds, and have a strong core to handle the unexpected.”