[Eventually I will write about what I’ve been DOING in Thailand, not just how I’ve been feeling. However, I have been feeling a lot here and that is what I have been inspired to write about. Adventures have been happening and will be told. Don’t you worry]
5:02am comes early. As 5:55am rolls around I finish my coffee, say goodbye to conversations I would like to continue and I put on my running shoes. Heading to the park it’s still dark but I can see the lights ahead. I focus on getting to the waterfall of light the street lamps create. While I’m in the light I can see nothing else, just the small space the street lamp floods, a 10 foot circumference around me, which I pass through in a second, back into the darkness where I can’t even see my feet, just the circles of light ahead and a memory of them behind.
While I’m running I think about where I am. I think about my attempts at being present. I think about how being in Thailand has forced me into really focusing on where I am and who I am and how I want to learn and grow: mentally, physically, and spiritually. Each time I step under a light I imagine that there is nothing beyond it and nothing behind it. I am in the light and I am nowhere else.
Even though I know that I just passed a Buddhist temple that was build 1000 years ago (that blows my mind just to type it) and ahead of me are more wats (temples) that are just as old, there is also a dog that is waiting to bark at me and a truck of a fellow runner parked by the gate—but I am in the light and no where else. Focusing on that 10 foot circumference, focusing on Thailand while I am in Thailand, is hard. Noticing the light, enjoying being able to see clearly in the light is something I am practicing daily. Failing at it some days, but also succeeding at it in other moments.
I will keep getting up early, I will keep running, I will keep moving in the light.
10% and 90%? No. 50% and 50%? No. 75% and 25%? That’s probably closer.
This is me trying to figure out the mental to physical strength I’m going to need in February. Yep, you guessed it, I signed up for a 50K trail run in Thailand. What the fuck am I thinking? Part of me said after I entered my credit card into the little box. This is going to be awesome! The other part was saying. 5:30am is not a good time to make big decisions, but I threw down the money and now I have to begin training—for realz.
74% mental: (I know, you think I’m nuts…bear with me) 50K is what? Like 30-something miles? That’s a lot of time on your feet, a lot of time in your brain, a lot of time to talk yourself out of something. Or in my case I’m pretty good at talking myself into things. Being here in Thailand is tough on my brain, on my emotions and on my regular life routine. Running has been a savior, if I can convince myself that 89 degrees isn’t that hot (mostly because yesterday was 94 degrees) and I can go out and run—I’m golden. Just 7-10 hours of that on race day and done is done!
25% physical: So yeah, I do have to train for this thing. My current idea of a training plan is as follows:
2xweek: 2 a day runs
1xweek: try to get out for over 2 hours (we’ll see how this goes)
Other activities: badminton, push-up, squats, lunges…etc.
By February 2nd it’s just going to be another long day in woods…right?
Wait wait wait!!! Where’s that extra 1% ? you ask?
1%: Support. Cheerleaders. Positive energy. Love. And Gu… don’t forget the Gu.
I’m having a hard time focusing on what is directly in front of me. I SHOULD be doing: packing, organizing, sending my visa, enjoying Oregon for the last month I have left… but what am I actually doing? Watching a movie and looking up places to travel in Thailand, looking for places to travel after Thailand, trying to decide if I should come back to the States after my stint in SE Asia, trying to decide if I want to get a real job or try and continue traveling some way, some how.
While on my run yesterday I looked ahead at the opposite side of the Valley; it was rolly horse and wine country. And then I looked behind me; mountainous, lush…well, mountains—full of trails, wild life and switchbacks to climb. For the first time in a while I looked at them, I realized their beauty. When you see something every day you don’t realize how amazing it is until it’s almost gone. I love those mountains, I haven’t taken advantage of them and should be using them every day, but most days I’m not.
I’m unable to focus. I’m so excited to get going and get out of here that I’m not living every moment I have left in Oregon. I’ve always been bad at living in the moment, being where I am—I will be focusing the here and now on for the next 29 days. Yes, I have a lot to do, but I also can’t wish these precious few weeks away.
Or at least trying to be.