Sunday, January 25, 2009

Running through the winter

It's been pretty cold here. I ride my bike to work and every morning I have to psyche myself up, not so much because my body will be cold, but because my hands get so cold on my ride to work. But, convincing myself to ride to work isn't that hard. The other options, driving and paying $15 to park or paying $4 per day to ride the bus with a bunch of crazy, sick or crazy and sick people doesn't really feel like much of an option. Running is different, running is optional. So running when it's crazy cold outside can be a hard sell.

The past couple Thursdays I have been going down to the track and doing speed work. Here's what happens. I ride my bike home in the cold. Walk the dog in the cold. Then somehow I have to convince myself that it is a good idea to go back out in the cold and down to a dark, lonely track right on Rainier Ave. to do a painful work out. I'm not actually sure how I get myself out of the house. There is usually a lot of talk about how the actual pain will only be about 15 minutes long. Or how in 50 minutes I'll be home and done and so glad I did the workout. And someday, when I actually pass the level II crossfit criteria (more on that in another blog but it involves some fastish running) I'll be so happy.

Then there is the trail run on the weekend, today's challenge. I have been running with my friend Michelle and that makes getting out of the house much easier. Two weekends ago, we headed off and got to run for 1.5 hours in the pouring rain. Last weekend, I was all geared up for freezing weather, then as we drove out there it got warmer and warmer. I guess there was some convergence zone and it was extra warm in the mountains. So our run was 50 degrees and sunny. It rocked.

This weekend I was not so lucky. Michelle is off skiiing, so it was just me convincing myself to run. It was about 31 degrees when I woke up and there was nothing appealing about getting out and running for at least 1.5 hours. I watched an episode of Homocide and drank some tea. Watched another episode and decided I needed pancakes. Then I convinced myself it would be warmer in the afternoon and watched yet another episode. Finally, about noon I decided I had to go. So I got all geared up and stepped outside thinking 'oh, it's not so cold out here'. Unfortunately, this week was the reverse of last week. As I headed out of town it got colder and colder. In fact about Bellevue, the snow started. But the time I got to Cougar, it was snowing. And as I ran up Cougar there was more and more snow. It was cold. I don't think my fingers warmed up until about 30 minutes in.

All I can think about lately is how nice it would be to throw on shorts and a t-shirt and have the challenge of running be the run, not the exposure to the freezing cold. I don't know if doing this makes me a stronger, better person? Or maybe it just makes me crazy.

I wish I had some pictures of Otto running in the snow, he was certainly having fun!!

No comments: