A few years ago Jim and I were training for the Disney Marathon. We were up in North Carolina visiting my parents and needed to keep training so we would be prepared for the race. We woke up one morning around 0430 to run the Cape Fear Trail.
That time of the morning is people are pretty quiet. Most people are still sleeping. The animals however are active, trying to do their business before the rest of the world wakes up.
While we were out on the trail we did see several deer. It was do dark that the only thing you could make out visually was their white tails, but you could hear them.
As we ran Jim and I did not speak. We waited until light broke which was about the ten mile mark in our run. As the sun rose we began to get more comfortable and we both shared what we had been thinking about as we ran. Jim and I both had fears about someone with night vision goggles ambushing us. Not only did we both have the same thought about some murderer in a ghillie suit, we were both coming up with survival plans.
Our plans ranged from knowing our escape routes to attack plans.
As the light shined on us we felt much safer and much more comfortable, so comfortable that we got to share and laugh at our morbid thoughts. The most frightening thought is that there are dangers in running. It is not very likely to get attacked or abducted while you are jogging but it could happen. Trust your gut, be aware, and stay safe. And maybe find a partner in crime who will help you escape from the person who might be in the woods with NVGs and a ghillie suit.
I don’t recommend biting off more than you can chew. However, when you do reach capacity you discover a lot about yourself. You find out just how much you can handle. And you discover what keeps you on the right side of sane.
The past few weeks have been a whirlwind in our house. At age 50, Jim, has gone back to school and is a freshman in college. Our daughter Dominique is a freshman and is on the track team and in the chorus. And a few months ago I started working on my master’s degree.
As a result of the hectic schedule, it was difficult finding time to do my homework, while also making sure I could attend track meets and cook dinner. I found 4 AM was the best time to do homework. Sleep is something I love and compromising it was not easy. My afternoons were filled with coffee to energize me just enough to finish the day. Jim and I found a few moments here and there to have a date and share war stories about school.
My run is the only thing I refused to compromise. I was finally getting back in shape after the foot injury and I was not about to go back to square one again. No matter how exhausted I was from rushing to a track meet, work, or writing a paper I had to devote 30 minutes to a run around the neighborhood.
Thirty minutes doesn’t seem like a lot. But in reality those precious minutes were just what I needed to clear my head and get away. My short runs were a mini-escape. Just enough to keep me moving forward and sane.
One of my classes has ended, track season is winding down, and Jim is almost done with finals. I think for a while we’ll be sure to take smaller bites.