Hello and welcome to The Fairest Run Of All, 2021 edition! Shall we start out the new year with a little light complaining? Let’s!
Because boy howdy, kids, as a denizen of the warm and humid land of Puerto Rico for almost two years now, I have all but forgotten how to run in the cold. I ran a series of 5Ks over the last couple weeks while in Maryland’s wintry throes, and while I knew intellectually it was going to be chilly I was not prepared.
Literally. I wasn’t prepared. I almost was – I packed gloves for my runs, and long-sleeved shirts and pants, and even puffer vests. So far so good.
I also own four pairs of crew socks, the kind that go halfway up your calf. They’re soft and thick and warm and perfect for running, and currently live in a drawer in Puerto Rico. Of course in Puerto Rico they’re useless, but I keep them there so that if I’m ever flying somewhere cold, I can pack them. In this case, I did not remember to pack them. My ankles were COLD.
Not the end of the world, of course, but you know what ELSE winter running throws at you on top of the cold? Wind! Frickin’ GUSTS of wind! What is that about? Is the cold not enough??? (After the 2017 Rock ‘n Roll Marathon DC, you think I’d learn, but I guess I blocked the memory from my brain.)
Oh, and the rain. Why not add some rain while we’re at it? That’ll make it extra fun. Nothing like a good rain juuuust above 32 degrees – all the cold and wet with none of the pretty snow elements.
And the ice! The day after it rained, it got down to below freezing overnight, and during my next run there was ice. I kept my eyes on the ground and didn’t fall, but I still thought that was impolite.
Although! It did flurry on Christmas. I liked that. And the cold makes me much faster – a good minute per mile, sometimes. And once you get started and warm up a little, if the wind can just chill tf out, it’s really not so bad.
I guess I did formerly run outside all winter and survive. I could get used to it again. Except that I’m back in Puerto Rico now, and don’t have to. Let the cycle begin anew!
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