It's not even winter yet, and already things are becoming challenging. Here are a few random short stories about winter running of late.
Didn't Get Far
Before the car's wheels make it from the driveway to the street, the mist is freezing on the windshield. This doesn't bode well for the entire drive down to Medina. I am going to meet Debbie Scheel and Michelle Wolff for our Saturday morning run. I drive (carefully!) up 303 to just before 42, and then turn around. Although it doesn't seem impossibly slippery, the freezing on the windshield continues. I love running with friends, but it just doesn't make sense to risk one's life in order to do so. Running alone is not so preferable... except when it's safer.
When We Did Make it
A weekend ago, I do manage to meet up with Michelle and Debbie for a run. Although we don't get real far - we each have our own little injury/illness/being out of shape crosses to bear - it's wonderful to get together again. Been a while.
One of the most major hazards of winter running is ... wait for it ... having to do it on the mill. Why a hazard, you ask? Because if you're me, you push yourself way beyond the point of ridiculous. And that's what I do Thursday, for the second time this week. This time I try a tempo run; Tuesday it was 3/4 mile intervals. This run - 3 miles at 7:30 or better pace, sandwiched by warmup and cooldown miles - actually goes okay. But afterwards, I certainly do feel the effects.
The Letter 'C' Part 1
I generally don't like running in the hood. You can't get real far, and the streets are concrete, rather than asphalt. But those two problems are less important when the weather's bad. You don't want to get to far from home anyway. And if there's snow and ice, who cares about the hard concrete? When a couple two inches fall all of a sudden, I decide to stay close to home. I used to consider it a 'U' but (sideways) 'C' is better because it's earlier in the alphabet. If I go around the outside of the 'C', and then return on the inside of it, I've gone about 1.1 miles. Three loops this way, and two shorter ones that avoid the inside part half-circle part of the loop, make five miles. I do this in that inch and a half of new-fallen snow, and it's a beautiful thing; almost what you'd call magical. I enjoy this run more than any solo sauntering I've done in a long time.
The Letter 'C' Part 2
When I run a course multiple times, I get to enter it into the list of courses available for Garmin selection and association. Since this is my fourth time on the course this week (I ran it once earlier as well), I'll have to elevate this one. Yes, fourth of the week, and second of the day. It's getting tougher to get double-digit mile runs in lately, but this second five of the day will do it. There's snow and a little ice in the roads as I circle around. This is my solo run after not making the entire trip to Medina. My leg muscles are feeling the strain of those slight slips that go along with each footfall/step. But, all in all, it goes okay. Slow, and fairly exhausting, but okay.
Sweet Potatoes: Not just Not for Breakfast anymore
A good after-run breakfast... Cook some oatmeal in a separate bowl (I just microwave it with water and a little salt). While that's cooking, take a leftover baked sweet potato, some Vega protein powder, some almond milk, a little splenda and about a pound of cinnamon and blend together. Mix this with the oats, and you get... Sweet Potato Oatmeal Delight!
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