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I got up early this morning.  I wanted to knock out a run before the day got supercharged.

And I did.  I got to the gym around 5:30ish.  But I wasn’t the only one with an early-morning workout in mind.  Blue tank top guy was there, wearing a gray tank top.  Almost didn’t recognize him.  There were several others there, too. Five, actually – three men and two women.  It was kinda crowded.

My favorite treadmills were occupied by bald men.  Sigh.  I took the middle one in front of the blank TV.  Looking straight ahead, all I could see was my reflection in the window.  It was still dark outside, and raining off and on.  I could have run outside, I suppose, but I kept getting special weather statements on my phone regarding imminent epic rainfall. Pounding the pavement didn’t seem prudent at this juncture.

I had a revelation yesterday. I’ve long known that I need more structure in each day.  I’ve got some in place already with morning devotions, exercise most days and chores.  But it seems I require more. It simply hasn’t been enough. In the past, I’d always relied on school or work to define my days, breaking it into delegated segments. Goal-setting helps, too, but I’m fresh out of those at the moment. It occurred to me, out of the blue, that I can add my own structure. I’m reintroducing some long-neglected regimens.  Running before breakfast is one of them.

Chugging along on the machine, I felt good.  My fellow gym rats came and went.  The floor fan, positioned facing away from me, circulated no air on my sweaty body.  The air in the room became warm and a bit stale. I smiled anyway.  I forgot how good it feels to get the workout done early. It fuels the body and spirit in a way I can’t describe.

As I gathered my gear and walked out the door, I beamed a benediction on the predawn zealots. No words necessary. I stepped outside, ready for whatever the day would hold.

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