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Track and Travel

Welcome back to 40 before 40: The Journey. Two things about me. First, I love to travel; exploring new cities, meeting new people, and occasionally trying new food. Second, I ran track for most of my life. I started competing around the age of 9 and continued all the way through college at Cornell University. It is in my blood. It was only natural that I started with a combination of these two loves.

The Goals

#7: Travel to a city

#26: Run a 5K under 27 minutes

The journey took me to a track meet in Maine. Just like life, this trip was filled with ups and downs. I came in with some big goals (especially for someone who trained less than an ideal amount 😂). But it was such an incredible feeling to be on the track again, so it made it all worth it!

It was a pretty laid-back meet and you could sign up for events right at the starting line. The first event of the day was the 5k. My goal was to finish in under 27 minutes. It was painful, and there were multiple times when I questioned my decision, but I kept going and at the end of the day I was grateful to finish the race and exceed my goal. The race was so great that I am already planning my next run. Which one should I sign up for?

After the 5K, I competed in the long jump. That was my event back in the day! This is where things failed to go according to plan. Don’t you love that? When you plan out everything exactly the way you want it to happen and then life is like, nope, try again. Well, that happened to me. I injured my hamstring on my final jump! Not ideal. I flew all the way there. And now I was hurt. 😭

It felt like all I could do was give up or further injure myself by running more. Completing while injured was a big 🙅🏾‍♀for me. I choose to be the biggest cheerleader ever and compete in events that wouldn’t deepen my injury. I did the shot put and the turbo javelin. So fun!

After the meet, I explored Portland, Maine. Our host took us to Cape Elizabeth where we saw Maine’s oldest lighthouse. We walked along the water, snapped photos of stacked stones (an incredible meditative practice), and observed the beauty of nature.

I had the best poke bowl of my life and because I was in Maine, I had to add in some lobster. Unpopular opinion, lobster is not that great! I don’t dislike it, it’s just fine but I don’t understand the massive appeal. Am I missing something? Please share!

I spent my final morning in Portland, exploring the city alone. I had a delicious cup of coffee before I took off on a walk from Portland’s Old Port to East End Beach.

I sat on the side of this cliff overlooking the water. Maybe I will call it a mini cliff. I just sat there. Watching the clouds pass through the sky, listening to the sound of the waves, feeling the air on my skin, and enjoying each and every moment.

Sometimes mindfulness is just that. Being present and aware of what is happening in the moment. That's all!

As you go about your week, how can you stay present? I would love to hear one thing you are doing in your life to stay present. Share in the comments or send me an email.

I am grateful for the trip to Portland, Maine, and the opportunity to compete in a track meet again. It might have been my first meet in a decade, but it won’t be my last.

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Glad to hear about your Maine and track adventures! Maine is so lovely! In terms of trying to stay present, I've been disconnecting more and setting my phone aside.

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