Has Anyone Seen Gayle? or The Tale of Organized Run 3!

Yesterday, Gayle (gdeann) and I ran our third organized 5K since graduation. This was our third in only four weeks. I woke in the morning and as my eyes slowly opened to the day I heard the most frightening sound that a runner in Kansas, USA can ever hear!! It wasn't screeching brakes of a car that is about to hit you, it wasn't even the sound of sirens as an ambulance comes to pick you up after an especially hard run, (a thought that we have both feared since W1R1) but something even worse. WIND. Not just any wind mind you, but the kind of WIND only before experienced by the likes of Dorothy and her little dog Toto!! Gayle was soon awake also and I greated her with a soft, "shhhhhhhh, listen." As the wraith of Mother Nature hit her ears she instantly began to swear and question why we ever even considered this running game.

As the day went on I began to form the story for this very blog which I am now typing. I thought that after we were finished I would post something with a witty title along the lines of "Has anyone seen Gayle?" and then continue on with a story about how windy it was. I would move on saying that at some point my lovely Gayle blew away and that she would soon be arriving on your "side of the pond." I was even considering offering to send you the money to package her up and send her back to me!! But alas, I had to forfeit those well-layed plans for something different...the truth.

Now, the parts about the wind and Gayle swearing for the most part is true!! ;-) She did wander through the house all day muttering, "dumb, stupid, crazy people," refering to us and the thought of us running. The day passed on and the time came for our run. The wind continued to howl and quickly the gremlins came after us. You see, we knew the route of this run and had even attempted it a couple of times during the week. It was easily the most difficult course we had ever set foot on. It appeared to be uphill the whole way and occassionally, just for fun, they threw in a HUGE hill!!! We worried that with the wind and the difficulty of the route, we would be soon be handed the brutal reality that we weren't the runners that we had hoped we had become.

With one last, "I love you and it's been nice knowing you," (Our customary words when parting for a run in case we die along the way!! :-) ) the horn sounded and off we went. It was hard. It was the hardest run I have ever put my feet to. The tight tights-clad young ladies were even beyond my concentration as I struggled against the wind and hills. Ok, maybe that isn't completely true. My first mile was around a 8:15 pace. The tights had done it to me again. I was running too fast and again, just as in my first organized run, I had to slow only to watch them prance off without me. :-(

On I plodded, trudging up the hills and struggling, asking myself why I was trying to do this at my age. Almost two miles into the run, I ran by my own home. Yes, we paid $25 each to run on public streets in front of our home...a place we can run everyday for free. Our daughter, brother-in-law and sister were standing there cheering, so on I went. I continued to plod and finally, I was able to reach the end of the run. As I crossed the line, I clicked my Garmin off and heard something that I had never expected..."Twenty nine, eighteen." HUH??? WHAT??? I checked my Garmin and confirmed it...a personal best. I don't know how, but I did it. After a short bit of congratulations from my daughter, sister and brother-in-law (they had driven to the end after cheering at our house) I turned around and returned to the course to again finish with Gayle.

Not far back, I found her and turned to run to the finish with her. I will allow her to share with you how her run went, but suffice it to say, I was not the only one with a personal best yesterday. We stayed around for medals to be given. I smile as I now type that I recieved a third place medal in my age division for my run. Gayle, well let's just say that she brought home some hardware for the trophy case also and hers was of a metal that is far more valuable than bronze!! ;-)

It is with more pride than I can even say and a bit of a tear in my eye that I now tell you how incredibly proud of her I am. This run was a struggle. It was a run that she easily could have quit on and I wouldn't have blamed her, but she didn't. She made it and she made me proud.

Now, as I close I again ask "Has Anyone Seen Gayle?" Not because the wind blew her away, but because in the last 4 months she has changed so much that I barely recognize her. Her ability, her fitness, her body, her confidence, her determination...all have made me proud to call her my friend, my running partner and most of all...My Wife and Love of My Life. I Love You, Sweetheart!!

Keep Running!! :-)



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31 Replies

  • A great blog, Steve. Bravo, BRAVO - to both of you. Wow - what a great time.

    It must be lovely to have such a supportive and loving partner, Steve. That made me well up. It sounds like you're having a blast with the whole running thang.

    I don't know about Gayle, but I was blown away by that!

  • Thank you so very much, Viv!! I am so very blessed to have Gayle as my running partner, but as my partner in everything!!

  • Fantastic blog! I agree with Viv, I am blown away by it all! It's times like these that remind me just how far we have all come on our personal journeys! Well done on such a fantastic run both of you! :)

  • Thank you very much, Rollertoaster!! It is truly amazing just how far we have all come!! It is easy to overlook sometimes, but this run made me realize just how we have progressed!!

  • Awww, that's lovely! Well done to both of you - what fantastic runners you are :)

  • Thank you, Annie!! If by "runners" you mean gasping, wheezing plodders...indeed we are!! :-)

  • Brilliant achievement! Well done to you both.

  • Thank you, rosn!

  • Oh Steve, I laughed and laughed so much reading your blog! So very funny! You have both had such a journey to get where you are today. Fantastic to go out there and do the run even when it is so windy. Got a secret to share with you. i did that and felt as though I'd had a Thai massage the next day! My muscles throughout my entire body were so painful. Do hope that doesn't happen to you. So what medal did Gayle get-Silver or Gold?

    Fantastic achievement-Blown away by it all :-)

    Colette xx

  • Thank you very much, Colette!! Gayle bypassed the silver and went straight to the gold!! :-)

  • Wow! Steve-that is so fantastic!!! Yeeeah atta girl Gayle. Huge squeezy hugs from me you clever thing you. You'll have to change your photo now to one where you are wearing it to show us all. You must be on air! To think you have come this far. Amazing! Truly amazing!!! :-)

    Keep on Running! :-)

    Colette x

  • Thank you Colette!!!! I just stepped outside and it is absolutely still...not one breath of wind! I am still trying to recover from the "resistance training" on run day! Of course, my age would have nothing to do with that... ;-)

  • Isn't that just typical?? of course the affects are nothing to do with your age Gayle, like the affects of the "Thai massage" they were nothing to do with my age after running in 50mph gale force wind....No, nothing to do with at all.....:-)

    Just takes flaming longer at our age to recover. Not sure about you, but I was aching in every muscle for a week-I still ran though :-).

  • Awwwww Steve! What a sweetie and what a great blog! Must say, I was expecting it to turn into a Wizard of oz parody -- next time maybe? xox delia

  • Thank you very much, Delia!! We will certainly see what we can do about the Oz story...give me a bit of time!! :-)

  • Wind, tights, PB's, $$$'s, medals.......wow, you have had the full works with this run Steve!! Very well done though and a massive congratulations for your PB and medal - wow, amazing!! You and Gayle must be as proud as peacocks at the moment and I am looking forward to Gayle's blog now to hear about this wonderful medal of hers........!

    High-fives to you both!!


  • Thank you so very much, Sue!! I couldn't have done it without my Garmin!! :-)

  • Loved this blog. Well done both of you.

  • Thank you, Rosie!!

  • What a lovely blog. Well done both of you, you must feel very proud of yourselves, and rightly so.

  • Thank you, Jo!! I think that we are still trying to catch our breath!! :-)

  • Wow brought a tear to my eye. You are both certainly real runners now!! Well done to both of you PB's and medals that has to be worth the entrance fee alone. Fantastic achievement, congratulations x:-D

  • Thank you much, Rolphie!!

  • What a great post Steve! So good to hear about you and Gayle doing yet another organized run!

    Congratulations on your PB, I am going to look for Gayle's blog to find out about her run!


  • Thank you very much, Anna!! It is wonderful to hear from you again!! Take care of that foot!!

  • I love your blogs Steve - funny and inspiring and just so lovely - Gayle is a lucky woman! :-) You are both brilliant people - Many congrats on the PBs and everything you have acheived so far S xxx

  • Thank you so very much, virtual!! I am afraid that I have to disagree, though. I am the lucky one to have found someone as special as Gayle to tolerate me!! :-)

  • Wow! Congratulations to you both!! What an achievement for such a lovely couple! I've got tears in my eyes.

  • My reply from yesterday seems to have disappeared :-(

    That was a wonderful blog, simply lovely. Well done both of you :-)

  • Dear Steve and Gayle, I just wanted to say that as an equally blessed person in the relationship/life stakes, it is so lovely to hear your adventures in re-defining yourselves and creating new adventures together :-). Mat and I find that playing together is the most wonderful and happy thing we do in our lives. It brings a fresh perspective each day rather than the same old same old.

    Soooooo just wanted to say that even though I don't get to post as frequently as I'd like I am so thrilled to witness other couples enjoying the enrichment of playing together and finding the positive in each other. I've always wanted to share what I have found with Mat but people have to find it for themselves so please just let me say I AM SOOOSOOO happy for you both that you have such fun together (notwithstanding the ups and downs that life does inevitably take us thru :-)!! )

    So big hugs, Sara xox

  • What a lovely inspirational post. Well done to both of you. Wow - just proves you should never give up!

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