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Monday, July 8, 2013

Notes on Adventure Racing

 Cold AND Wet.  Dirty was irrelevant.
Team ENDracing/Yogaslackers placed third in the stubborn mule  30 hour adventure race this last weekend.  As navigator of the team, i learned lots during the race, got us lost a few times, and realized we have a pretty good team that is just going to keep getting better.  I also remembered why i love adventure racing so much - it wakes me up.

Most of my life I spend operating in a way where certain distinctions between things not only make sense, but have great bearing on my decisions.  Clean vs. Dirty is a prime example.  Adventure racing takes me to a place where this distinction is useless.  Cold vs Warm - sure, thats important.  Wet vs. Dry  is useful too (wet packs weigh more than dry ones). But clean and dirty drop away.  

I get closer to a primal (as overused as the notion is in pop culture) state.  I realize the resilience of my body.  I can survive deep forest teeming with mosquitos.  I can sleep in the middle of a swamp standing up.  An open lake paddle after 24 hours of racing (26 hours awake) becomes blissful because the sun rises to warm and dry me after a cold, wet night.  

I let things go.  The natural world is no longer the 'natural' world.  For those 30 hours, it is simply the world - 'natural' no longer provides a meaningful distinction.

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