Nº142 Where Attention Goes, Energy Flows | My Silk Road Recap


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Twotone Consulting | Est. 2014
Nº142 Where Attention Goes, Energy Flows | My Silk Road Recap
By Jon Woodroof • Issue #142 • View online
Hello! It’s been while. Like, a long while. How have you been doing since I last wrote? (You can actually hit reply.)
It was more than two months ago since I last wrote. This is the biggest break I’ve taken in this modest weekly mail’s nearly 150 issue existence. 😨
Keeping a weekly newsletter consistent for 3.5 years has been no easy feat. And keeping it together since The Silk Road Mountain Race has been no walk in the park either. Frankly, my attention has been elsewhere. And as the saying goes, Where attention goes, energy flows. But, I feel that I’m getting my focus back.
But, first, let’s rewind…
When I penned Issue 141, it was after midnight on the eve of the wildest thing I’ve ever done on a bike. In hindsight, those two weeks I spent in the mountains of Kyrgyzstan were pretty easy to the news that weighed on me throughout that trip & since: I learned I’d lost the battle to keep my kids in The Netherlands the day before the race began. And when I returned home to Amsterdam (even a day early for just 24 hours more with them), they were already gone…
In the weeks since, I’ve tried to focus staying positive and things my business and my girlfriend, Kristy, and her kids. So far, I’ve been out to Florida once to see Otto & Mira and will do so more or less monthly until the day someday that they are able to come back for good. I am coming to grips with it all.
I think the lapse in shipping this newsletter was an indication of how scrambled I’ve been. Revisiting these weeks in Kyrgyzstan was reliving that trauma of losing my children. Thank you to everyone that has checked on me since early September. I’m finally feeling like I’m getting back in gear. And massive kudos to my team for holding it down on all of our projects. Twotone has been busy, we’re closing on our 4th birthday & have availability for new work.
As always thank you for reading,
Enjoy this issue? (It is a long one!) 🙏 Sharing is caring!

Distance: 1210.6 km Elevation: + 18290 / - 16101 m Moving Time: 101:57:17
Distance: 1210.6 km Elevation: + 18290 / - 16101 m Moving Time: 101:57:17
The Silk Road Mountain Race was a big deal for every racer that made it to the start line. Of those 98 people, only 29 finished the race. All of them have amazing stories like these:
It has taken me ages but below is my day by day account of my experience in the Tian Shan mountains: (each Strava link has more photos!)
Day 1 | 99.4 km on Saturday Aug 18
Day 2 | 55.0 km Sunday August 19
Day 3 | 118.4 km Monday August 20
Day 4 | 119.4 km Tuesday August 21
Day 5 | 89.1 km Wednesday August 22
Day 6 | 119 km Thursday August 23
Day 7 | 76 km Friday August 24
Day 8 | 163.5 km Saturday August 25
Day 9 | 99.3 km Sunday August 26
Day 10 | 100 km Monday August 27
Day 11 | 76.7 km Tuesday August 28
Day 12 | 29.7 km Wednesday August 29
Day 13 | 46.6 km Thursday August 30
Day 14 & 15
Having showered for the first day since a quick river bath on day 3, I awake refreshed. We repack our bags and depart from the guesthouse the van had brought us to after breakfast to meet Jeff from Factory 5. A taxi driver calls out “Bishkek!”. I stop & say goodbye to Tai. Two Dutch ladies are sharing the cab with me. Wat toevallig! It takes ages but I get back to the race registration location, meet up with Max, have dinner there & head to his hotel.
Being back in civilisation is bizarre and the looming realities that await me at home are growing closer.
The next day, Sept 1, I awake in a strange purgatory of emotions. I had skyped with the kids the night before and told them to make a list of everything they wanted to do while we’re together before the move. I was overjoyed to see them on Skype but missed them now more than ever.
Svea from Headroom had found me an early flight home and I did a quick interview with Max for a film he’s making about the trip after I had packed my bike. Then I headed to the airport with Kim. The feeling of returning home to uncertainty after embarking upon a trip of uncertainty is daunting. I was at peace but still anxious. The turning point I had postponed for 2 weeks was drawing near.
Post Script
Unsurprisingly, it is hard to summarise this trip. Flipping through my journal’s pages and reliving my emotions. My stoke. My sadness. I remembered each time I cried on the bike. I might cry now. But what does it mean? Do I care about CP3? Kinda. Anything I coulda done better? Nope.* I got what I came for. I came for escape. To suffer. To explore. To become better friends with some and to make new ones. And give away every single Twotone sticker that I brought with me. I know Kyrgyzstan now and know myself better. I faced my hardest days. I never wanted to scratch but I didn’t approach this as a race. I cherish every memory & appreciate the time it gave me to mourn about the Dutch court’s decision to lose my children to the United States. My heart was the heaviest thing I carried with me but its lighter now. ❤
*ok, ok. I coulda had tougher tires for sure, a front derailleur, a stove, went race pace out the gate and then I would have finished for sure.
More Links
hold your line, you'll be fine
hold your line, you'll be fine
HOW IT FINISHED FOR MAX, BENGT, JON #SRMR, an episode from Calamaro on Spotify
Melancholic Beauty on the Silk Road Mountain Race – Lian van Leeuwen
Bas & I did a talk at Patagonia Europe
Thank you for reading! I'll be back next week with your regular scheduled programming!
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