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The Power of a Small Gesture

I was on the home stretch of a short run that took me to a nearby park and back; one that I had done countless times before.

It was a beautiful sunny day without a cloud in the sky and right around 70 degrees. As I passed the local middle school, I happened to overhear a young girl emphatically shouting “Go! Go!”

The outburst caught my attention, and I involuntarily turned my head in the direction of the yelling. I was anticipating some kind of race among classmates or possibly a fight.

With my head fully cocked to the right and my eyes searching for the origin of this enthusiastic outcry, I focused on one figure on that chaotic school playground.

She was a young girl, about 12 years old, standing on the other side of the fence looking in my direction with her fists pumping in the air. She was cheering me on.

With the frenzied nature of recess and all of the distractions surrounding her, I’m surprised she even noticed me. I immediately smiled from ear to ear, threw up my right arm, and responded with a few fist pumps of my own as I continued on my way.

There were only 100 yards left on my run. Those last strides were the most powerful and fluid movements of my entire workout.