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Winter Running Woes

I’m the type of runner who pretty much gives up on outdoor training after completing my annual Turkey Trot – meaning that cold weather running is simply not for me. After November, I’m DONE with outdoor running and won’t venture back outside (unless the weather is randomly warm one day – then I take advantage) until around the end of March/beginning of April for the Shamrock Shuffle 8k. This winter in Chicago has been more brutal than the rest. With not one, but two polar vortices (and a rumor of a third one on the way), it is next to impossible for me to get outside and train.  My motivation to even walk from my front door to the car to drive to the gym isn’t too high, either. I’m still holding on, but it hasn’t been easy.  In January, I tried to go out and run on a “warmer” day (probably 20 degrees), but found nothing but patches of ice. icyroad

If you can consider that to be a “patch of ice” …

I’m lucky to have a gym membership because I would never exercise without one this winter.  In previous years, I was able to do at least a few runs outside.  This year, I’m terrified of falling on my face 🙁

February is my least favorite month. I always grow impatient to see some green, green grass and, for goodness sake, temperatures in the 30s and 40s… maybe 50s? That’s not too much to ask. I’m ready to get outside! I’m so desperate for warm weather that I’m looking through old pictures on my computer related to summer running. So. Much. Nostalgia.

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After the first time I ran 10 miles. This was in 2011 when training for my first half marathon!

SWEATY

Super sweaty at my parents’ house after a summer 10k with Sara.

Is it weird that I miss running in shorts and still burning up from the heat? The answer to that is probably “yes.” I could spend all day looking at sweaty running photos from past summers, but I have work to do 😛

Treadmill running is not the worst thing in the world. I can tolerate the treadmill quite well. Sure, it’s not the ideal situation, but at least it has a TV. Plus, I can listen to my music as loud as I want to and not worry about getting hit by a car. The treadmill forces me to run at one pace all the time, which I believe helped me get faster for last year’s Shamrock Shuffle 8k PR (I didn’t follow an official training plan like I am this year, so I’m hoping to achieve an even better time!)

Sometimes, I need a training method other than the treadmill. Indoor tracks aren’t bad for runs that last under one hour. Many park districts allow you to run on an indoor track for FREE.

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Going around in circles drives me crazy if I do it too often, which is why I actually prefer the treadmill over the indoor track.

Either way, I’m pretty sick of this crappy weather.  With so much indoor running, getting outside in a month or two will be that much sweeter 🙂