Winter in NE Ohio can be characterized by a few things: Subzero temps, ice, and snow. Last week, we had all three. Admittedly, we’ve had an easy last few winters so it’s probably not the best to complain. But….winter running is tough! There are so many extra layers (and resulting laundry), it’s often so hard to get motivated to face those chilly mornings when it literally hurts your face for the first mile. The shoe situation can just be an overwhelming pile of decisions: spikes or no spikes? Yaktrax? Trail shoes or road shoes? It’s a lot. But with all of that, comes another side that we don’t often discuss. In the winter, the cold air can actually be quite comfortable after a few minutes. Plus the views tend to be crystal clear so you definitely see some unbelievable sunrises. And there’s a quiet peace to running in the cold-no crickets chirping, no early morning sprinkler systems, very few people are out that early. It’s really a runners paradise. So for me, it’s really just a matter of shifting perspectives and focusing and what is good about winter running. Plus the frosty eyelash look is pretty badass!!
Tuesday: 6 total. 1.5 warmup, 6×400 with 400 recovery, 1.5 cooldown. Focus was on keeping these at about 1.53 or faster (about 7.32 pace give or take). This is quickly becoming a favorite staple workout which means it’s probably time to switch it up a bit.
Wednesday: 4 total-did this as a progression run followed by lifting. I rarely am at the gym this time of day (4:30pm) and the Olympic lifting area was FILLED with high school boys listening to Nirvana. It was a weird throwback and I definitely held my tongue in asking them they were even alive when Kurt Cobain died. I mean, come on!
Thursday: 5.1 @ 9.37 pace. I felt a little sluggish for the first few miles but quickly found a good rhythm as I got lost in conversation with Emily and others as we talked about life, kids etc. Part workout/part therapy session.
Running action shot with Emily-go check out her blog-she’s raising funds for various charities while she runs EVERY half marathon in Ohio-super inspiring!
Saturday: 8 miles. So this was one of those aforementioned really cold days. The real feel was -10° so I had a bit of hesitation to go out and run icy trails where the running would be limited and the majority of the time would be a fast hike. The opportunity to warm up and stay warm with movement was definitely hindered by the trail conditions so the run was cancelled and I met my friend Heather for 8 easy indoor track miles. I second guessed this decision because I typically don’t like to run indoors on weekends but I’m glad I was able to get the miles in and have some good company during.
Sunday-5.1 miles. This was a bonus run for me. I woke up early and decided to join my regular Sunday running group starting at 6:30. The temp was 8° to start but the real feel was about -10° below. It was definitely cold at times, particularly as we ran past a little lake, but I did eventually warm up particularly in my core and felt comfortable for the majority of the run. Aside from the snow packed terrain (trail shoe for the win!), I was grateful for these miles. When we got back to the coffee shop, we called it quits for the day and stayed for coffee.
Look at this sky-worth it for the views
Total Miles: 28.2
Total Strength Workouts: 3-hoping to keep up with at least 3 per week until I get into heavy ultra training.
This week, I plan to maintain my sweet spot of 28-30 miles but kick up my long run to 12 miles. I also have a race planned for next weekend-the Dirty Snowflake Prediction run. The person who comes closest to their predicted times wins the race which is a great opportunity to practice listening to my body when pacing.