Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Sub Zero Run and My Crazy Mind!!

So, I couldn't hack it anymore and decided I was going outside to run today no matter what the conditions. This would be only my 4th outdoor run in 24 days! I knew I had to be done by 3 to pick up the kids from school so I thought I'd wait until about 1:00 when temperatures would be a little warmer. It was a whopping -1 degrees when I started and the windchill was significantly colder. What to wear in these conditions is entirely new to me. All I knew was I would have to have very limited exposed skin! I opted to wear a full pullover mask that only had an opening for my eyes. It is open under the nose and has breathing holes across the mouth. I almost had a panic attack trying this on since it's so constrictive. I put another hat over the top and sunglasses. I sweat profusely when I run and I cannot stand being too hot. I wore a baselayer Under Armour shirt,armwarmers over top of this, and my 3/4 zip Brooks vapor dry jacket. I also wore very thin running tights with thermal running pants over the top, smart wool socks and my Brooks Launch shoes. These shoes are not ideal since they are very airy but I wanted to try them on the road and went with them anyway. I opted for mittens instead of gloves since my finger froze off last time and was ready to go. My "plan" called for 10 with 4 @7:15 pace. Day 3 and I have already thrown the plan out the window 2 of the 3 days. I decided I just needed to run outside and could care less about my pace. I also was thinking I could probably only do about 6 miles out there because of the wind and would have to finish up on the treadmill at home.

Here are my lessons learned:

You can't wear sunglasses with a mask! They will fog up immediately.

Smartwool running socks are amazing. My feet were not even remotely cold.

I love my Brooks Launch shoes even more on the road.

I need more than just a baselayer shirt with the jacket. I wasn't deathly cold but of all places I felt like I was getting frostbite on my stomach as I ran into the wind.

Sweat FREEZES. My eyelashes were covered in ice crystals!

You cannot "farmer blow" with a mask on. How am I supposed to get rid of all that excess snot.

Be prepared for passing drivers to look at you like you are some sort of psycho freak! I swear I had 3 people slow way down just to stare at me.

When I got back into my car I couldn't get my mask off quickly enough. It was frozen solid around my neck though and I could hardly get it off. I looked like I just got out of the pool. Absolutely saturated with sweat.

Final stats: 8 miles in 1:02:14. (7:46) My pace per mile was between 7:29 and 7:34 every mile except #6 where I ran into a farmers shed and lifted my mask to blow my nose and clear the frost from my eyelashes. I kept the Garmin going, hence the 7:46 average.

Now, my goal prior to the run was to just run at a comfortable pace and log some road miles. This is exactly what I did. I'm slowly coming to the realization that my comfortable pace may have become become faster. I have a hard time believing in myself sometimes. My mind tells me I'll be lucky to do as well as I've done in the past when in reality I have continued to train hard and should do better. Does anyone else struggle with this stuff? Since my marathon in October I have run many many miles including 3- 20 milers and several speed workouts. Why is it so hard for me to believe I could have gotten faster-my mind always has an excuse for this generally crediting it to an unusually good day. When I first started running with my Garmin in July I noticed that on the days I was running just for mileage my pace would almost always hover around 8:34. No kidding, every time I looked down at the mile mark I would be almost at this pace exactly. I actually ran a 10 mile once in which 9 of the Garmin miles recorded 8:34. Wierd! Anyway this pace gradually moved to 8:12. Looking back at my Garmin history, almost all of my miles except speed work and purposeful long runs were around this pace. I was really increasing my mileage in August and by the end my comfortable pace had moved to around 7:57. Today, every time I would look at the Garmin it would say 7:33. I actually spent much of the run trying to slow down a little bit but sure enough I would look down a minute later and be right back at 7:33. All I know is 7:33 used to feel a lot more difficult than it did today...

Tomorrow is supposed to have a high of 17 degrees. My God, I'm practically considering laying aluminum foil out on the snow in my yard and catchin' some rays! My time is limited due to school programs and my work Christmas party in the evening but I hope to manage my run outside again. Unfortunately we are also supposed to get 2-4 inches of snow so we'll see! Have a great night y'all!

14 comments:

Mel-2nd Chances said...

Awesome job getting out there for a run! Love the looks that you get running when it's colder --makes you feel hardcore!! You are one speedy mama!

Meg Runs said...

OMG!! You have so much to do and undo just to get your run in Girl. I am totally impressed and in awe. The frozen parts, solid mask, farmer blows and fogged glassess cracked me up but you and you are SOOO dedicated! Way to go! I hope your holiday plans are fun and that you can still get out there between the storms and get some miles in. STAY WARM and dry!

aron said...

omg... WOW i cannot even fathom running in conditions like that... WOW! very hardcore :)

Lisa said...

Now THAT is hardcore. OMG, I cannot believe you ran in those conditions. Major props to you!!!

Genesis said...

holy, talk about smokes, talk about hardcore dedication. i would have slowed down and stared too.

Staci Dombroski said...

Way to get out there! I can't believe you got little ice crystals on your eyelashes :-)

Captain Nuts said...

You must have to start your workout a half hour earlier just to get dressed. Can't you just face the treadmill towards a large window or watch the weather channel when running.

robinbb said...

You are nuts! I feel like a ninja when I wear my face mask, mine is a necessity due to my asthma, cold air makes it harder for me to breathe. Great job on your run!!!

Melissa said...

You are extremely hard core. I am amazed!

TMB said...

Sounds like a great run (minus the cold). And I love the lessons you learned! Stay motivated, you'll make it through this winter and rock Boston!

lindsay said...

good lord!! i wear a nice warm fleece when its gets in the low-30's or below... you only wore UA and a jacket?!? i'd have turned into an ice sculpture :)

major bonus points for getting out in those temps!

Katie A. said...

You are AWESOME!! I don't know where you got the drive to get out there (other than the thought of being on the dreadmill yet again) but I am very IMPRESSED!
I am sooo with you on the whole time thing! I have done to runs this week, both eight miles, where my pace was between 7:35-7:45 and I wasn't even trying! Just going for feel and to get the miles in! I think my hard work has finally payed off. I don't know about you, but I have also been working/thinking more about my posture and kick and that has helped ALOT! That takes 5-10 seconds off your pace easily when you are getting a really good kick.
Great job girly!

Running and living said...

It's funny, bc weather over here (New England) is pretty bad, but not even close to what you are describing. More power to you for getting out of the house to run. Honestly, I get out there no matter what. Your training is going so well. I start in 2 weeks:) I struggle with believing in my pace, too. I wrote a post a while back about confidence,where I described the same issues you are describing. I think when one makes quick progress, it takes the brain a bit to catch up. See you in Boston:)

Christina said...

I can't even imagine running in weather that cold. I think I would be whining the whole time. And I'm not educated on the "fun" of running in the cold. Who knew eyelashes could freeze?