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I am Jun-da, Lee from Pingtung, Taiwan, nicknamed Ada or Jeter. Just like my name indicates, I often do things that others consider foolish (what “Ada” means in Chinese.)

In 2013 I walk around Taiwan for the first time, in order to have a different graduation trip; in the following year, I walk around Taiwan once again, but with a 17-kilogram Neon God borrowed from a drama group; in the July of the same year, I attended the Tour De Taiwan Ultramarathon representing Providence University.

Now I’m an agricultural mechanism, with hobbies including running marathons, cycling, and I’m also an amateur auto racer.

My biggest dream now is to complete the remaining three events of The 4 Deserts Race Series in three years – the Gobi Desert in China, the Atacama Desert in Chile and the Last Desert in Antarctica. And then I will organize a team for a Jeremiah Expedition and challenge to climb Mount Everest and letting our flag flutter on top of the world surrounded by all gods.

 

 

Step Out of my Comfort Zone by Running

 

I liked to run when was in elementary school, so I joined the track team.

That was in a summer day I had to train. It’s a flash of passion. I gave up going the next day due to the intolerance hardness.

"Damn! It's too tired!" After then, I seldom run.

Because of my outstanding performance in sport, I was nicknamed “Oxygen cartridge,” which indicated my endless physical strength.

“If you like sports, you can heading the direction and develop.” My teacher advised me at the day of graduation. However, I didn’t. Instead, I followed the route alike everyone else: junior high, senior high and college….

It’s not until I challenged walking around Taiwan did I get out of the comfort zone and also get to know people from all areas.

 

I’ve lost my way.

Time and time again at the crossroads of life.

But fortunately, I still have the opportunity to try again.

‘cause the best times are now.

 

Two years ago, I saw in the newspaper Tommy Chen winning the championship of The 4 Deserts Race Series. At that time, I was very excited and deeply touched because I saw Taiwanese could finally shine on the world stage. And there are still many people working hard on practicing their dreams.

So I began to regain my enthusiasm for running, and I went to the road run race one after another, all the way from 5 k, 10 kilometers, half-marathons to full-marathons. Although it had been pretty tough on the road, in order to reach the dream in my heart and fly up high, I feared nothing.

 

 

Ultramarathon Defines Me

 

"If you never give up, dreams will never fall and leave you alone."


I started to get interested in ultramarathons. Races with courses longer than full-marathon distance (42.195 k) are ultramarathons. I started research on that and then I met SUPERACE.

SUPERACE, SUPER + ACE, is a sports brand founded by Kevin Lin, the world-famous ultra runner. He has won numerous awards in domestically and abroad and won the championship of The 4 Deserts Race Series, was the first runner in human history to cross the Sahara, and completed 10,000 k Silk Roads. All his records are confirmations of the brand spirit of SUPERACE: Beyond the Limit!

January 2017, I completed the SUPERACE Taiwan station. Right after the race I told myself: I will never and ever run again for those kind of struggle and pain! Even though I’d swore for millions of times, I signed up for another race in Xinjian.

 

 

SUPERACE, Xinjian station

 


Photo with Kevin Lin at Taoyuan Airport

 

 

Every race is a conversation with myself
 

I cherish every game I played

regardless of the result

I do my best in every place, do no hesitate

Without practice will there be no answer

So I kept get out of my comfort zone and ask for adventures.

 


Arriving at Hami Airport!

 

Why do spend so much time and money on races? Sometimes even I wonder. It’s not unreasonable for parents to doubt and against. There’s a huge value gap between the older generation and the slash generation. But behind every dream being practiced, there’s concrete reason. I truly wish my parents can understand.

 

 

From the Heated Gobi Desert to the Snow-capped Tianshan Snow Lotus
 

 

The sky was gradually lighted up. Runners got up early in the morning and took a shuttle bus to the starting point of the course in the mid-section of Silk Road.

"Accidents are always out of expectation." There was a military exercises in Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region, Weian, the government circled the devil's city and the sea lane as a military area the night before, and abruptly eliminated our track. “Speechless “was written on our faces.

"The military has the final say! This is China!" kevin Lin said. Plus the increasing tension between Taiwan and China, we’d better say nothing while security is our highest principle.

While I thought the race would be completely canceled, the organizer determined to change the course to Tianshan. Yap, the place which is famous for Snow Lotus! Environment is switched from extremely hot desert to freezing mountain areas with 2700m high in elevation.

“What is done is done.” It can still be a great start of my dream! Perhaps I can earn some precious opportunities to pick some snow lotus!

 


We took the bus to the course and finally started to race.

 

The Unexpected Adventure
 

"Five, four, three, two, one, GO!" Dozens of runners counted down. The race has cheerfully started.

But in fact, I was worried, about the recurrence of the old injury in my left foot. My goal this time was simply finishing the race. Luckily, my foot was totally fine from the start till the end. “I can definitely higher my ranking if my body is under perfect condition.” I thought.

I felt great at the beginning. The rocky road and dirt road are totally friends to me when running and playing in the country fields chasing birds and frogs!

I started to feel tough on my way uphill toward a temple at 2700m high in elevation. I breathed hard, felt extremely exhausted even when I’ve swallowed tones of BCAA and energy bars. No use!

Since I did little altitude training before, getting tired like this is not unusual. No matter what, I have to finish the race.

 

 

Run Out of the Comfort Zone
 

I used to be fearless man like a new-born,.

I thought I’ve saw the greatest wave

but not knowing the existence of even more enormous storms

You’re a frog in a pot

If you never leave, you’ll lose your life and dream gradually in the warm, still water.
 

I was fearless before

Thinking the world is mine for my youth
 

Then I realized one day,

the world has never really cared about your existence.

Things are not so simple as I thought.
 

So I learned to make a stopping point on my way of dreaming.

Stumbling on my way.

Lose some and gain some.

Perhaps this is what being young is about.
 

Am I tired? Don’t you ask.

Dreams in me have me no fear.

 

 

Endless uphills and downhills are REALLY scary, and needless to say when you have to run the way! My physical energy and mental spirit are collapsing as well. Reaching the boarder of your extreme, that’s the moment when you can know the true self of yours.

 

 

Listen to Your Own Voice
 

The reason why I love running is that it’s the period of time to get along with yourself without any single interruption. And you gradually enter another space that reflect your voice that you’ve seldom listen to.

I told people to be themselves and be honest quite often in the past, but it’s hard in reality. Be honest to yourself for at least once, so you don’t forget who you are easily. Then you left no regression in this world.

 

 

When I walk on the broad road that is considered to bring me to prosperity,

I cannot help wondering: is this really what I wanna be?

Stumbles along the way, gain and lose.
 

I told myself,

Whatever you can pick, wherever you can be,

Only one road there’s no way I should step onto,

it’s called Giving Up

There’s no way unpassable in this world,

only people who refuse to go.

 

I ended the day with 18th in ranking. We stayed overnight in yurts, taking a break and preparing for the final stage tomorrow!

 

 

Cheering Up for Each Other
 

The race was nearly ended, with almost 30 k of the road.

“It would be great if I can get 2 or 3 upper in ranking.”

“I’ll get the best out of me even if it’s the only chance for me.”

Still rocky road and dirt field; energy bar and BCAA powder was disgusting as it should be.

“I must have a cup of bubble milk tea right after backing to Taiwan!” I thought. Every simple piece of desire like this is my intention to push myself toward the finish line. Though trying to collect my motivations, my energy was running out, and I had to walk at the end to adjust my breath.

 

 

Even though running a race that I know for sure I’ll lose

I want to have a look at the destination

No need to concern if I’m finishing the journey or not

Never say no to your dream.

Only say yes to yourself.

 

 

Hi, the Finish Line!

 


Cheering grew louder. Then I knew I was about to cross the line.

 

 

It ended up with 15th in ranking in the 2-day ultra race.

Kevin Lin was standing there waiting.

“It’s Kevin Lin!!! The one who won the championship of The 4 Deserts Race Series like Tommy Chen” I screamed out loud in my mind. “Can you take me to Sahara? I want to find the Little Prince.”

 


Kevin Lin was cheering up for the runners at the finish line.

 

 

At the moment of crossing the finish line, I completed this Xinjiang ultramarathon
 

I also know, my clock is counting down

I determine that at the moments I dream still, I travel around the world and see everything

So when I get old,

I can taste them repeatedly in my memory

every time when I close my eyes.
 

One day I will look back

Finding that the beauty of my journey earned by my courage.

 


After the race, we took a ride in the desert Standing in the middle of the endless sand field makes feel so small like one sand among millions.

 


Teaching hand standing in the Gobi Desert for the first time!

 

Not Only Achievement but also Friendship
 

After finishing the race, everyone became kind of silly in relaxation. Those blains, pains, wounds are all nothing matter at the end. I review myself every time after races for the better performance next time. And also, I figure out the reasons why I have to finish, and being glad that I’ve never really given up though the thoughts have stroke me for thousands of times.

I met many friends from all over the world in the race, including Linda and Ali from the UK, YoYo from Korea and others. I learned how to run and how the dream from every one of them.

 

To be continued...

 

 

 

 

 

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