Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Scarcity and gluttony

This past week:

Wed:    Run 4.02mi      35:57
        Yoga 25min.
Thu:    Run 5.05mi      46:23
Fri:    Run 3.39mi      30:31
Sun:    Run 12.48mi     2:04:13

Did my long run in Bafoussam because I was over there visiting another VSO volunteer. Ran the road that goes north to Foumban, which is very hilly -- mostly long (1/2 to 1 mile), sloping hills. And now my thighs are killing me. I ran Monday and Tuesday of this week, thinking it would be better to keep them stretched, but last night after doing some yoga I applied arnica oil and today I'm taking a rest day in the hopes I will be able to go down stairs without wincing.

Today is market day, so I'll need to ride my bike to Bambui to buy food (9mi round trip, 6 of which are on our rough dirt road). I figure that will either kill me or feel good.

Lent is approaching and I've been contemplating how I intend to mark the season. Since this has been on my mind, I noticed a recent reaction of mine which I found interesting and thought I'd share.

We are several months into the dry season and food is getting a bit more scarce, even here in the "breadbasket" of Cameroon. Also, I've not been able to shop for food in Bamenda (where there is more selection) as easily as I have before. So, I was having constant thoughts that I could not get enough to eat. The form of the thought was not really about the present moment as it was about some potential future. This set up a reaction in me where I started to overeat. When I had the opportunity to eat, I ate more than I needed or even particularly wanted. Or I would eat sufficiently and then remain unsatisfied and start to hunt around for something more. It also had me eat things I am not supposed to eat because of food intolerances (particularly wheat) and my reaction to wheat tends to reinforce this eating behavior.

Not unsurprisingly, this caused me to gain about 6lbs which was just enough to have me not feel good.

How easily the *thought* of insufficiency, even when it is out of sync with the reality, leads me to behave as if the *thought* were true, despite all evidence to the contrary.

I want my Lenten practice to remind me that I have enough, I am enough, there is enough or even more, far more, than enough--gratefulness and great fullness.

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