When I looked at my schedule for this week and last week when my running partner first sent it to me, it said in bold letters “Mexico”, well wooohooo, that sounds great! 🙂 Unfortunately for me, that was Lori’s plan for these two weeks, my life has been a bit more hectic and less relaxed than a beach vacation.
Like the rest of you, I’m getting really burned out on winter running, and as soon as March hit, I felt DONE. Well unfortunately winter wasn’t DONE with us. I wanted to long run last Sunday, but wasn’t super concerned with how far I ran, anything over 10 km’s was fine, it’s a cutback week, and I was happy to rest my legs, especially with the temp in the morning being -40 with the windchill. The super awesome thing about -40 is that I don’t even have to put units in, Celsius or Fahrenheit, it’s the same! Ok, so really there is nothing awesome about -40. I waited the weather out until the afternoon when it had warmed up to a balmy -24 C (-37 with the windchill), hubby was getting on the treadmill so if I wanted to run anytime soon, outside it was. Here are a couple of mini points about running in extreme cold:
- Wear layers, dress warm, I also used some body butter/balm on my cheeks and exposed skin to protect them. Once I got going I could have done without one layer, but when it’s that cold (like potentially dangerously cold, I’d rather have an extra layer than too few)
- Run somewhere sheltered. I planned my run in Fish Creek – which luckily is right out my front door – but it’s also very sheltered. There are a lot of trees on the west end of the park, and it’s a valley with protection on the sides.
- Don’t venture too far from home or your car. I ran a couple out and backs and a loop right near home, and then did a bit longer out and back, but I was never more than 2-3 km’s from my house, that way I could bail and head home early if I needed to.
- If you have your phone with you for music, or tracking your run, keep it close to your body, and don’t take it out. The battery in my phone freezes in extreme cold, and it only takes a couple seconds of exposure for it to shut down.
- It’s usually not as bad as you imagine. I honestly find that as soon as the temp reaches -20 or so, it just feels cold, and any lower, still cold, I can’t tell much difference between -20 and -30 (unless it’s windy – the wind can be super nasty – thus running in a sheltered area).
Check out my friend Michelle’s great post on winter running, she goes into way more detail on what to wear, and what kind of layers, etc she uses.
As for the rest of the week, it’s been busy, with a sick kid and a brand new job on Monday, things have been a bit different. Normally I do most of my mid-week runs at lunch, either on the treadmill at work, or outside by the river. Well the new job, while having a lot of other cool perks (free biscotti!!), does not have a gym onsite. This has led to me trying some early morning runs. I like to try to be home with the kids not too long after 5pm, so we can all have supper and spend some time together, I also work a 9 hr day, so do the backwards math and including my commute, that puts me at work at 7am, and leaving around 4pm. In order to get my run in, I have to be up by 5 ish and on the treadmill ASAP. I’ve never done much super early morning running because I’ve always had the lunchtime option. Here are my initial thoughts… I don’t like it!! I know lots of people do it, and swear by it. I even put in my last post about juggling things that it is a good option… ugh, I still think it’s an option and I’m sure I’ll be trying it some more in the coming months, but at this point I still prefer lunch runs. I have been getting up at 5 am for ages, so have totally bought into the drag-your-ass-out-of-bed-early philosophy, but at this point I’d rather do other things for an hour or two or four, and run when the sun is out, and run outside for that matter. Alright, I’m done my tantrum, and I will run at the ass-crack-of-dawn if necessary, and maybe once it’s not -25 and dark out, maybe I’ll actually enjoy them, but for now, I’m going to do what’s necessary to get my runs done, and try to schedule some for the lunch hour where at all possible!