6:15am this morning, my phone rings.
???! Other than my swim coach, Tim Storsteen, who has been known to call at 5am to be sure my lame-ass is getting up for swimming :), not really anyone calls me this early. I was awake but hibernating under 16lbs of down comforter... I grabbed the phone and pulled it under the covers with me... "hellllo?" I mumbled.
It's Gollnick. And she's cheery and LOUD, as usual. :)
I heard her smiling on the other end and all I could think about was wanting Starbucks.
"You're nuts, Heather..."
"I just got back from the race in Chile. I'm in the Miami Airport waiting for my 9am flight. I knew you'd be up. How are you, girl???"
We've done training stints together so she knows I am an early bird.
Then... 7:30am. Phone rings. ???, again!
It's Paolina Allan. She is not as chipper :) but she is hanging tough in the early hours. She wanted to reach me before I left for the day. We got caught up on a lot of good girl chat, and we talked about her impending marriage to her longtime boyfriend, Steve Fleck. (!!) Steve is so great, I am happy she is with someone so supportive and who is such a good partner to her. They are getting married in March in Polly's native Scotland. CONGRATS to them!
Sometimes things come to us in a whisper. Other times on a screaming freight train.
A couple days ago I stumbled onto a GREAT quote:
"Every morning in Africa, a gazelle wakes up.
It knows it must outrun the fastest lion or it will be killed.
Every morning in Africa, a lion wakes up.
It knows that it must run faster than the slowest gazelle, or it will starve.
It doesn't matter whether you're a lion or a gazelle -
When the sun comes up you'd better be running."
(But, unless you're a runner, you won't understand.)
I thought it was funny. I also knew I was the gazelle in this scenario. :) Later that day, I stumbled upon this SAME quote through a totally random source. I thought it was a bit odd to see this again, but laughed at its content and shook it off.
A few hours later I was attending the monthly meeting for my running club (Chattahoochie Running Club) and this SAME quote appeared during the guest speaker presentation. (!!!!) THREE TIMES IN ONE DAY??
I laughed silently. "Ok", I thought to myself, "I get the message..."
Sometimes they come in whispers... sometimes in freight trains... but they come.
It's time to run, Sharps. Really run. So, the next day I rallied. It was NASTY outside. It was maybe 30 degrees and rainy, with some wind which made it worse. Just yucky. I layered up in my snazzy Mizuno clothes and headed to the River. When I arrived and parked my car, I noted the normally full lot was empty. There was 1 other car! No other fools wanted to deal with this mess! :)
I pulled down my knit cap, put on the gloves and out I went... as I started my run, I noted the frost coming from my mouth as I exhaled. The air was so crisp and the dirt path was so beautiful with the River flowing next to me. It made me feel alive.
As the minutes ticked on and no one was out there, I smiled to myself as I felt some of the old Carole again. I felt some renewed vigor knowing I was out there, for 3 miles or 17 miles, 7min pace or 10min pace - WHO CARES? - I was out there when no one else wanted to be. Other people were on treadmills, I was out there absorbing discomfort. It wasn't unbearable. It was 30 degrees, not like a negative wind chill factor. But, still, I let myself soak in the pride. Normally this place is packed, but today was empty. Except for me.
On this day, only to me, that mattered.