To say it’s been cold here would be an understatement. It’s been said that everybody complains about the weather, but nobody does anything about it. Not that any of us can really “do” anything about the weather. This is the fifth winter of my running career and I can say that it has been a challenge especially over the last few weeks. I looked at my running totals so far for the month and I am at 82 miles. If all goes well this next week, I may match December’s totals. But I am a far cry from the monthly totals of the fall. But that is ok, because we are in a down time. This is a rebuilding season.
Today I was able to get out in the relative warmth of a 32 degree day and yet it was windy. It’s hard to run into the wind – all that cold air gets into your lungs. The last few days have been hazardous in many ways.
- First there is the cold. We have had dangerous wind chills over the last few days. Thursday after I got out of work, I went for a three mile run. It was about the coldest that I have ever been during a run. I thought my fingers would never warm up.
- Then there is the ice. Several days of freeze and melting cycles have created very slick spots. There were several of those that I encountered today, especially in the park.
- Then there are the people who don’t shovel their sidewalks. Since it was so tricky in the park today, I decided to take to the sidewalks in the city, but that proved difficult because so many sidewalks were either partially shoveled or not shoveled at all. This means in many places I had to run on the street next to the sidewalk. Which brings me to hazard #4
- Drivers who don’t watch for runners. Let me set the scenario: I was running facing traffic and in a crosswalk. I was almost run over by a man who was traveling in the same direction as me as he hurried into the drugstore that I was passing. I was scared because he came out of nowhere.
So to return to how I did this week. Most of my runs were slower but then again the temps have been cold and I don’t like that cold air deep in my lungs. Once it warms up again, I will pick up the pace and work on that 8 minute mile. Until then though I am pressing on!