Wednesday morning at 4:00 a.m. there was no point in staying in bed. Plan called for a 7 mile run and the idea of it made sleep impossible. Why? Because of a raging debate in my head:
“You know it’s icy don’t you,”
“Yeah, but you gotta get those miles in just be careful and go slow,”
“It’s freezing cold as well,”
“Cold I can deal with. I’ll just layer up,”
“That means it won’t be thawing any time soon. It will be dangerous. If you fall it could take you out of the game. It’s only 4:00 a.m. you could just stay in bed until 6:00.”
“That’s it. Get up. Time to run!
Twenty minutes later, layered and bundled up stepping out the back door the first step proved it was icy. Very icy. The driveway was a sheet of glistening black in the light of a nearly full moon. Backing down the driveway the car slid sideways and the drive to the park was dicey. The Rail Trail at Warwick Park is a 3 mile out and back that crosses a road each half mile. It’s very easy to measure distance. Seven miles is typically a double out and back with another ½ mile out and back.
It’s a “trail” so most of the surface is conditioned dirt and gravel but the first mile was snow covered ice and tough to run. The last ½ mile, however, was fairly clear and the path was “rougher” making it less prone to slipping. The run turned out to be what you might call a zig-zag. I simply looped that last ½ mile over and over for 5 miles before that final slippery mile back. Under most conditions something like that becomes very monotonous and boring but not this time. It was pleasantly enjoyable! Given the conditions it turned out to be more of a slow jog than a run. It took an hour and 35 minutes.
As dicey as it was, it turned out to be one of those really fabulous runs. The temperatures were in the high teens, the moon was shining brightly and nearly full. The stars blanketed the dark blue sky. It was awesome. You know the feeling. It was amazing.
Here’s the thing. It would have been easy to talk myself out of a run. It was very icy and it was really cold. That’s what you get in the middle of January in Lititz, Pa. However, when you dress properly and you adjust for the weather it’s possible to get out there, stay on plan and get those miles in. Route adjustments, pace adjustments, expectation adjustments all come into play when the weather isn’t cooperating.
A run beats staying in bed every time. A 15 miler is on my docket for tomorrow. My next 26.2 is a just before the Garden Spot Village Marathon/Half Marathon so my long runs should be a bit longer than yours if you’re running our Marathon.
Visit our Pacer page. We have great Pacers and we posted their times this week. Whether you’re running 13.1 or 26.2 do yourself a favor – don’t skip runs because of the weather. Find ways to stay on plan! See you in April.
Scott Miller, RD
Garden Spot Village Marathon | Half Marathon