Training: Remembering and Pushing Through

The snowflake tree.

I spent the week trying to find time to fit in a run. I planned to go on Monday after my circuit training session, but I couldn’t lift my legs. Then I was going to run before Zumba on Tuesday, but the rain didn’t cooperate. Wednesday was Pilates. Thursday was circuits and Zumba. Friday is always my well-deserved rest day. So when was I going to make time for a run?

But there was no doubt in my mind that no matter what happened during the week, I would run on Saturday for Sherry Arnold. I had no excuse; I don’t live in a cold, snowy and icy part of the world, and Sherry had already been in my thoughts for every workout since I first heard of her disappearance.

When I woke in the wee small hours of Saturday morning with a raging headache (evidently the same headache/virus/germy nasties that manifested themselves in a flu-like Tiny Kitchen Assistant later that same day), it would have been easy to turn off the alarm and just stay snuggled in the bed until someone dragged me out by a limb. Instead I got up, out the door and logged a quick two miles before my Zumba class.

As I passed, I found myself wondering if Sherry liked wine.

My route took me past the iron and stone gate of a winery, and past fields of dormant vines. When I finished, and stood by my car turning off my various tracking devices (Runkeeper, Garmin), I realized that I was standing under a beautiful flowering tree that was shedding white petals like snowflakes. No, it’s not the same as running in Montana, but it seemed surprisingly appropriate.

Tonight, Sherry’s cousin, Beth, reported that Races2Remember, the organization that created the bibs for this virtual run, told her that more than 20,000 bibs had been printed.

Twenty. Thousand.

Try to wrap your brain around that for a moment.

Sherry was a woman from a small town in Montana, yet her story touched so many lives beyond her community, beyond her immediate family and friends. Complete strangers from all over the world all shared in this one moment, one where we stood up to the cowardly a-holes who took her from this world too soon, and one where we will continue to stand together to remember another mother runner.

From Beth:

“Cannot thank you enough for spreading the word, participating and caring about Sherry and her family. Without the power of social media, this would not have happened. The running world rocks.

Today the good guys win by a landslide.”

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