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Trail Magic

Posted by George Parker on

Has a stranger every offered you kindness or support when you most needed it?

Last week, I was on the "Peregrune Great Western Road Trip" where I visited running stores from southern Utah to northern Idaho. I stayed in Orem, Utah one night, just north of Provo. I ran near the scenic shores of Utah Lake the next morning. The run was not going well. The goal was 6 miles at marathon pace, and I didn't have it that morning. Maybe it was the time change, altitude, or days of driving in the car. Maybe my pre-workout nutrition was off. Whatever the reason, I was not running well. I was averaging 20-30 seconds slower than the goal pace.

Around Mile 4, the negative thoughts were creeping into my head. Struggling with negativity is a common theme in this blog that I and many Peregrune runners have struggled with. But at that moment, it happened. Trail magic. Seemingly out of nowhere, an older gentleman was on his morning walk coming towards me on the other side of the running path. We made eye contact, and he said, "Nice form."

That's it.

I have never met this man and will never see him again. He didn't have to say anything, not even "Good Morning." Instead, he chose to say the words that would mean the most to me at that moment. I didn't accelerate to goal marathon pace, but I did much better and thought more kindly. Those simple words rescued me at a time when it was most helpful.

I say to you all of you who need to hear it. "Nice form, you're doing great!" Now, go pass it along.

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