Why are you saving your bananas? Training for Warriors Portland


It's story time with Coach Josh at Training for Warriors Portland! Why are you "saving your bananas"? AKA Why are you holding back?

Take opportunities and live life to the fullest.

I want to tell you a story. I was lucky enough to go on a whirlwind tour of Thailand back in 2008/2009 as a last-minute trip. My buddy and I spent 12 days there and we did SO MANY THINGS! I learned so much about Thailand and Cambodia and visited so many different locations and had many different experiences. It was pretty overwhelming. Luckily I took hundreds (if not thousands!) of photos so I can still reflect and learn things from that trip.

One evening, we were riding elephants through the jungle. There was a park where you climb up on elephants to ride. There was a  bench where you could side-by-side with a friend. As we started this journey, we were given treats to reward our elephants-- a package of sugar cane and a whole hand of little green Asian bananas. Apparently, these were a favorite for the elephants and they KNOW that you have them. Once you start on the trail, the elephant’s trunk starts to come around your shoulder and sniff around to investigate what’s going on! 

My friend and I started taking apart our sugar cane and every 3-4 min, we would feed a piece of the cane to the elephant. He or she would immediately ask for more,and we’d be like, “No, you have to relax”! Then the journey would continue. AND IT WAS FUN TO FEED THE ELEPHANTS! We kept feeding them and we soon went through our sugar cane and started handing out bananas. 

There were elephants behind and in front of us- a whole train of people on elephants. Behind us, there were 2 women. One was in her mid-fifties, the other was in her eighties. They were NOT feeding their elephant any treats. But seeing that we were doling out treats, the elephant behind us creeped up. Pretty soon, I felt a little trunk on my shoulder. It was a little elephant saying, “HI!” So, I immediately whipped out a banana and handed it to the elephant to reward him for being friendly. 

The woman in her eighties riding behind us said “WE have bananas and we can feed our elephant ourselves!" She finally started to unwrap her bananas and feed her elephant. And it was a really meaningful experience for me. Profound, in fact.

I don’t know that woman’s story.

I DO know that if she was riding around the jungle in her 80s and I was in my late 20s at the time. I remember thinking this woman probably was looking forward to this trip for a long time. She probably saved up for a long time. She could have traveled when she was younger... but through life or different circumstances, she chose to do it later. She hesitated to travel and now that she was traveling, she was hesitating to experience all the opportunities she had in front of her. She was practiced at holding back. 

NOW, I made that narrative up, but that’s what I perceived about her in that moment. The ride ended almost immediately after that. I handed over my last piece of banana and 5 minutes later we were on the next leg of the tour and we had to leave the elephants. People finished the ride with all this extra sugar cane and bananas. I was thinking “What the hell are you going to do with all of that?!” You’re not gonna eat sugar cane and bananas and you CERTAINLY don’t need it where you’re going.

If that’s not a metaphor for life, then I don’t know what is!

My question to YOU is: What are you saving your bananas for?

If not to use now, what are you going to do with them later? Why are you holding back? That’s really what I want you to think about.

Let me know! If you figure out an answer, put it in the comments.


Training for Warriors asks, "Why are you saving your bananas?!"


Again, this is Coach Josh, helping you bring out the warrior within!