Get Up (Always)

Have you ever wanted to stay in bed vs. get up on a chilly dark morning?

Sunrise looking east in the San Francisco Bay Area.

If I’d chosen to stay in bed vs. wake up at 5:45am for a run on Mount Tam on a Saturday morning recently I would have missed a sunrise like this.  We all need extra rest when we can get it, but choosing to get up earned me a long list of gifts.

  • A 2.5 hour catch up with a close friend, Tucker.
  • Thousands of cleansing deep breaths
  • Use of nearly every muscle in my body
  • Reconnection with nature’s immense power
  • A sense of accomplishment
  • Happiness and laughter


Mount Tam teaches me many lessons.

I had another decision to make two hours into our run.  We were sprinting downhill through an especially beautiful section of redwood forest when my left toes hooked a root and gravity slapped me into the earth like a 195 pound rag doll.  I slammed into the ground so hard I bounced.  “Are you ok?”, Tucker asked after seeing and hearing my wreck from eight feet.

Frankly, I wasn’t sure.  


  • shoulder felt tweaked,
  • ears were ringing,
  • lungs were empty,
  • right knee’s skin was now on the trail, but I decided quickly to get up.  


I paused for two seconds to take an inventory and welcome the surge of adrenaline crash survival offers then jumped up to run on down the trail.  Five minutes later all crash pain was gone [you’ve gotta love moist redwood trails].  The pink, orange and blue sunrise on the horizon was now a glowing yellow ball overhead.  By the time we returned to Old Mill Park, we’d:  Determined how to improve the nonprofit sector and world, Addressed or resolved every aspect of our career and family journey, and retold for the 100th time the stories that never get old.

The reminder the universe had for me this weekend was simple-  No matter what…get up. No matter how hard life tackles you, take a deep breath…get up.

Assignment:  Reflect on a time when life offered you a stay down or get up decision and you chose the later.  Journal about it.  What gave you the will to get up?  What good came to pass as a result?  

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Bryan Breckenridge