The sky is midnight blue.
The full moon is shining brightly through the barren trees, making the frost on the branches glitter like diamonds.
The fresh air stings my skin at 18 degrees, but it awakens my soul.
My breath dances around me in the early morning darkness like a ghost in the wind.
Winter runs are the most difficult for me to get going, but honestly, they revive me.
I purposefully choose an early Spring race because if I don't, I know that my motivation will be slightly less to keep going. I am not a fan of winter.
The blankets and bed feel so good at 4:30 in the morning on a cold winter day.
But I choose to go out the door. And when the beauty of the sky and fresh frost greet me, I am so glad I did. The morning is beautiful. Cold... but beautiful. I do not like winter. But, for one hour in this early morning, I can find the beauty in it.
My muscles are a little stiff, true to winter days, but as I get going, they (and I) warm up. Yesterday the sun was out and melted the sun, so I have to watch my footing a little along the way, as melted snow becomes slick ice in the night. But those patches are few, so I don't mind.
My thoughts run wildly, keeping my pace going. I feel free. Call me one of those crazy runners if you wish, but I won't give a rebuttal to that statement today. I probably am.
I gaze at the stars a little as I run, and smile as the moon lights my way. No one is out today (and who can blame them??)
I am slow . I might be working on training for a March race, but my pace is dreadfully slow. But that's ok. Right now, I don't run for a time.
I run because it makes me smile.
I run because it gets me going on these winter days.
and I run because it frees my head from the tangled thoughts that weave around my soul.
As I turn around and head home, I am glad that I started my day this way. It was a challenge to rise at 5 am on Sunday. But very worth it. The fingers of the clouds are beginning to wrap around the moon now, and the pink hues of sunrise are just beginning to show themselves behind me.
I reach my front door, ready to be in the warmth again, and ready to greet my family, who is just rising. And ready to consume the Sunday morning breakfast of cinnamon rolls..... And I smile.
Today is going to be a good day.