In Which Jenn Has Forgotten How To Run In The Cold

Christmas Run

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!

Don’t forget, you can follow FRoA on Twitter @fairestrunofall. It would thrill me extremely if you would leave a comment with any questions or thoughtsSee ya real soon!

The Fairest Week In Review: 3/07

Welcome back to our recurring winter themed weekly recap: Jenn Is Cold. Here’s another cold weather running tip!

I ran into a lot of trouble with my phone battery dying in the cold a couple years ago. It was recommended that I use my body heat to keep my phone warm, but easier said than done when pockets large enough for a phone tend to be the outermost layer, right? Pants and jackets are where I’ve mostly found them. Fine if it, like, kinda cold, but less helpful when the temperature dips below 25 degrees.

So here’s what I’ve been doing on the v. v. cold days: I put on a bottom layer long sleeve shirt, put my phone in a running belt over top, put a short sleeve shirt over that, and then my top layer vest/jacket over that. The body heat trapped between your two shirts keeps your phone warm. Tried and true! I mean, at this point you may as well be running on a sunny beach.


Anyway, welcome to Tapertown, population me:

Sunday | ran 7.2 miles outside in 1:10


Monday | 55 minute ballet class
Missed my walk due to high winds and much work.

Tuesday | ran 5.4 miles outside in 55 minutes

Wednesday | ran 5.24 miles outside in 50 minutes

Thursday | walked 2.13 miles outside; 55 minute ballet class

Friday | ran 7.01 miles on the treadmill in 1:10
I was trying to dial in on my race pace, but oh boy, maintaining one speed for a full hour is boooooring.

Saturday | rest

Annnnnd roundup!

The Fairest Week In Review: 2/20

I recently read that endurance athletes require MORE sleep than the average person. In this way I have not been optimizing my training as a runner. Do not follow my example re: sleep.

However, I am not without redeeming qualities. For example, I have found a new way to adapt to running in the cold! Do you like to mess with your music while you run, but your supply of touch-sensitive gloves is limited? You only need one designated tech hand – split the touch pair, stick a regular glove on your non-tech hand, and voila! You just doubled your inventory!



Anyway. So life continues to be a mixed bag. Workout log, whatcha got for us?

Sunday | rest
Having just completed a 17 mile run the Friday before, I decided to give my body an extra recovery day.

Monday | 55 minute ballet class
I woke up early to run but I was unimpressed with the snow-rain-slush on the roads so I went back to bed. And then it rained all day so I never got a walk in.

Tuesday | ran 7.11 miles outside in 1:15
STILL raining but it was too warm for ice so I sucked it up and went out anyway.

Wednesday | ran 7.33 miles outside in 1:15

Thursday | walked 2.08 miles outside in 35 minutes; 55 minute ballet class

Friday | ran 7.12 miles outside in 1:10

Saturday | rest

And now for the roundup:

The Fairest Week In Review: 2/05

It’s been pretty chilly around these parts the past couple weeks, and while THIS week is thawing out nicely, I know fickle nature is bound to come right back at me with the winter chill in a week or so. It’s this kind of nonsense that makes me bound and determined to move south, people!

Ah, memories.

Anyway, as naturally cold reptile of a human being, I have a hard time dressing for winter runs. Logically I know that the act of running will warm me up, but I dread those moments on the street corner waiting for my GPS watch to connect to satellite and I’m not running yet and I’m NOT. TOASTY.

Which is why I have a bad habit of over-dressing for winter runs and getting hot. And then I remember that I over-dressed yesterday, so on today’s run I won’t make that mistake, but then the conditions are even more frigid than the day before and I’ve under-dressed and never quite warm up! Blast!

My point is that I recently read somewhere that you should dress for a run like it’s 10 degrees warmer outside than it actually is, and this rule has been helping me a lot lately. If you too suffer from Oh God Why Isn’t It Summer-itis, maybe it will help you too!

Speaking of cold runs, here’s the roundup:

Sunday | ran 9.09 miles outside in 1:30

Monday | walked 2.13 miles outside in 35 minutes; 55 minute ballet class

Tuesday | ran 5.11 miles outside in 55 minutes

Wednesday | ran 5.04 miles on the treadmill in 50 minutes
Too cold and potentially icy for the outdoors.

Thursday | walked 2.06 miles outside in 35 minutes; 55 minute ballet class

Friday | ran 5.14 miles outside in 50 minutes
On this particular day it was 19 DEGREES and SNOWED during my run. So I’m kinda proud of myself for doing it, but also, WHY IS WINTER A THING.

Saturday | rest

And now, the roundup.


Don’t forget, you can follow FRoA on Twitter @fairestrunofall. If you have any questions or thoughts, leave a comment or email fairestrunofall@gmail.comSee ya real soon!

The Fairest Week In Review: 10/24

We have reached the time of the year where I had to wear long pants, gloves, AND a vest to run in the morning. Naturally I passed a guy running in a t-shirt and shorts at the same time, but I know what I need.

NOT ALL THIS GEAR, that’s for sure.

I’ve been so spoiled the last few years – all my fall marathons were in unseasonably warm weather. Mind you, that didn’t always work out, but where I come from (WDW) overwarm is preferable to cold.

Maybe it means a cold-induced PR is in the works? Or I can look forward to freezing to death on the course. A true viking’s funeral, I hear.

Chilly workouts ahead:

Sunday | rest

Monday | ran 7:08 miles outside in 1:15; 55 minute ballet class
Woke up with a sore throat and ran outside in the rain anyway. Because I am an idiot!

Tuesday | walked 2.02 miles outside in 35 minutes

Wednesday | ran 9.35 miles on the treadmill in 1:35

Thursday | 55 minute ballet class

Friday | walked 2.07 miles outside in 55 minutes
Shoulda been a run but my knee was bothering me a bit and I was still getting over that cold that started Monday. So I took a rest day. Look at me, being all responsible. (After being stupid.)

Saturday | rest
Pat and I drove up to Williamsburg for our Busch Gardens adventure and ate McDonald’s while watching dumb hotel TV and it was awesome.

Roundup!


Don’t forget, you can follow FRoA on Twitter @fairestrunofall. If you have any questions or thoughts, leave a comment or email fairestrunofall@gmail.comSee ya real soon!

The Fairest Week In Review: 2/14

Happy Valentine’s Day! If you’re reading this, I love you. (For reals, the idea that people read the things I write gives me the warm fuzzies. <3)


Pat and I used to mark the occasion by eating dinosaur chicken nuggets, but then we decided they were so awesome that we should incorporate them into our regular diet and now they’re not special anymore. Oh well!

Let us non sequiter our way into the workout log:

Sunday | rest
There was a nasty wintry mix outside and my IT Band was still giving me a bit of trouble, so I decided to take the day off.


Monday | walked 2.15 miles outside in 35 minutes; 55 minute ballet class

Tuesday | ran 5.36 miles outside in 55 minutes

Wednesday | ran 6.22 miles on the treadmill in 1:05
Rain drove me into the gym. 🙁

Thursday | walked 2.11 miles outside in 35 minutes; 55 minute ballet class

Friday | ran 7.2 miles outside in 1:15

Saturday | rest

I was one of the huddled masses taking their iPhone into the Apple store to get the battery replaced the other weekend. While I’ve noticed some quicker battery drainage over the past months, my main impetus was that my phone keeps dying on me in the cold. Last time it happened I had to run TWO WHOLE MILES in silence AND it pulled down my step tracking average. 🙁 🙁 🙁

Sadly, when I explained all this to my Apple genius bar guy, I didn’t get that far. He determined that my battery still charges up to 87% of its capability and that’s within guidelines. Since we all have a year to replace our batteries at the reduced fee, he recommended I wait a bit. Fair enough. 

But when I asked him about ways to prevent the cold from causing my phone to just up and give up without warning, he was tragically unhelpful, insisting this was the norm. And I get that batteries don’t like the cold. But how come I was able to run the Rock ‘n Roll Marathon last March in 20 degree temperatures with no problem, but 35 minutes into a cold weather run now and my phone dies? Hmmm? HMMM???

Anyway. On particularly frigid mornings I’ve been stuffing my phone down my sleeve so that it leeches some of my body heat. So far so good with that strategy. But I don’t like how I can’t make music and volume changes. Anyone have alternate suggestions?

While you’re thinking, here’s the roundup.

The Fairest Week In Review: 2/07

Three words: STUPID IT BAND.

Yup, my old injury has reared its ugly, ugly head. Mind you, I probably shouldn’t’ve run a 14 miler when I suspected something might be up with it again, but it was on the schedule, okay? WHAT WAS I SUPPOSED TO DO??? (Rest. Right. Yeah. Whatever.)

The good news is – and I’m gonna go find a giant hunk of wood and knock on it eight to twelve times – the judicious application of KT Tape, an extra rest day or two, and slightly curtailed mileage seems to have tamed the beast. Here’s hoping it keeps up; I don’t want to run another marathon injured.

Sunday | ran 5.12 miles on the treadmill in 50 minutes
Cold and rainy weather drove me inside, so I made a speed run out of it.


Monday | walked 2.06 miles outside in 35 minutes; 60 minute ballet class

Tuesday | ran 5.26 miles on the treadmill in 55 minutes
Oy with the weather already!



Wednesday | ran 5.31 miles outside in 55 minutes
Snuck this one past the meteorologists by running AFTER work. I didn’t love having it hanging over my head all day but I was a fan of sleeping in.

Thursday | walked 2.33 miles outside in 35 minutes; 60 minute ballet class

Friday | ran 14.07 miles on the treadmill in 2:25
As I said above, I should probably have just saved this run for later, but doing so would’ve torn my carefully constructed marathon training plan asunder, so I took a shot. Hopefully it doesn’t backfire? 


I had wanted to attempt this outside, but again… RAIN. ICE. WEATHER. I really need to just move to Orlando already. Two out of two Edison employees agree!

Roundup:

– The Runner’s Guide to WDW schools runDisney n00bs on what to expect on race day.
– The purple whales of DCA’s carousel swim free, and Parkeology mourns. (And so does Moon.)
– Also in DCA, This Fairy Tale Life checks out the Lunar New Year celebrations.
– The Disney Tourist Blog reviews DVC’s special Moonlight Magic event. So jealous of the hyena photos!
– A Pinch Of Pixie Dust swans around Disney’s Vero Beach Resort.
– The Main Street Gazette theoretically tinkers with WDW’s nighttime spectaculars.
– Passport To Dreams Old & New takes another deep dive into the history of WDW’s background music.
– easyWDW revisits lunch at the California Grill. (I tried to show this to Pat; all he saw was the post title and immediately declared himself in favor.)


Don’t forget, you can follow us on Twitter @fairestrunofall. If you have any questions for us, leave a comment or email us at fairestrunofall@gmail.comSee ya real soon!

The Fairest Week In Review: 1/31

Oh my God, this workout log is so boring. WINE & DINE WILL NEVER COME, I JUST KNOW IT. *sobs dramatically*


Sunday | ran 10.26 miles outside in 1:45

Monday | walked 2.35 miles outside in 40 minutes; 65 minute ballet class

Tuesday | ran 5.24 miles on the treadmill in 60 minutes
Stupid rain ruining a perfectly reasonable running temperature. 🙁


Wednesday | ran 5.21 miles outside in 55 minutes
Well… it didn’t rain.


Thursday | walked 2.06 miles outside in 35 minutes; 65 minute ballet class

Friday | ran 5.18 miles outside in 55 minutes
So cold my phone died at mile 3. 🙁 Clearly I need a new battery…


Saturday | rest

So you may recall that I have been deeply suspicious of my GPS watch’s reports for some time now. I like to think I am indeed getting faster, thanks at least in part to increased training outside on hillier terrain, but some of my data seemed almost too good to be true. When my watch tallied well over 28 miles during the WDW Marathon, I decided some research was in order.

I ran across a post on the Garmin message boards that suggested many things, some of which seemed too technical for me to get into. But if you’re running across a similar problem, the two primary steps I took were a) make sure you regularly sync your watch on the computer and get all the latest software updates and b) once your watch gives you the satellite connection all-clear, DON’T just take off – give it a minute or so. Stretch or something. Let it ponder.

Maybe these are completely obvious and I’m just an idiot, but I think the last couple of runs have seemed to garner more accurate data. I’ll continue to keep an eye on it.

Roundup!

– run geek rundisney covers Athlinks, a race results aggregator. I tried it out and it’s pretty fun so far if you like looking at your own stats!
– Just Me & My Running Shoes offers a glimpse of runDisney’s kid races. Call me when they start a puppy bowl.
– easyWDW reviews WDW’s Disney After Hours hard ticket event.
– Disney In Your Day scrutinizes FastPass priorities at WDW.
– The Main Street Gazette attempts to pin down Disney parks’ powerful emotional hold on us.

– Disney Nerds checks out the food offerings at Shanghai Disneyland.

Don’t forget, you can follow us on Twitter @fairestrunofall. If you have any questions for us, leave a comment or email us at fairestrunofall@gmail.comSee ya real soon!

The Fairest Week In Review: 1/03

Double-wide workout log since I skipped last week. Let’s dive right in!


Sunday, December 17 | ran 11.08 miles outside in 1:50
I know I’ve said exactly this before, but: either I’m getting faster or my GPS watch is broken. The fact that it’s freezing outside probably helps…

Monday, December 18 | walked 2.46 miles outside in 40 minutes; 60 minute ballet class
Of course, the cold makes walks exponentially worse. 

Tuesday, December 19 | ran 5.28 miles outside in 55 minutes

Wednesday, December 20 | ran 5.29 miles outside in 55 minutes

Thursday, December 21 | walked 2.09 miles outside in 35 minutes

Friday, December 22 | ran 5.31 miles outside in 55 minutes

Saturday, December 23 | rest

Sunday, December 24 | rest
I had tentatively planned to go for a short run but it was cold and my parents were coming over for Christmas Eve and mostly it was cold. I miss my old walking-distance gym. :/ 


Monday, December 25 | rest
Christmaaaaaaaaaaaaaas

Tuesday, December 26 | ran 3.03 miles outside in 30 minutes
My birrrrrrthdaaaaaaaaaay

Wednesday, December 27 | ran 3.08 miles outside in 30 minutes
The second in The Four Days of 5ks streak I invented for myself.

Thursday, December 28 | ran 3.13 miles outside in 30 minutes
And each day was colder than the last.

Friday, December 29 | ran 3.11 miles outside in 30 minutes
But I did it! Bam!

Saturday, December 30 | rest

And there you have it. Ahead: more of the same, in that it is VERY VERY COLD and I hate it. 🙁 Except not so much more the same, because I’m in the middle of taper town for the WDW Marathon this weekend! YAY!!!!

Let’s roundup:


Don’t forget, you can follow us on Twitter @fairestrunofall. If you have any questions for us, leave a comment or email us at fairestrunofall@gmail.comSee ya real soon!

The Fairest Week In Review: 11/08

Sometimes running sucks. But it doesn’t suck as much as when you CAN’T run. Such is the paradox of the runner. 


LOOK WHOSE IT BAND IS BEHAVING NOW AND THEREFORE CAN RUN AGAIN!!!

Sunday | rest
I had considered trying out a run this day, but the weather was pretty icky; I took it as a sign from the universe to get my IT Band one more rest day.

Monday | walked 2.07 miles outside in 35 minutes; 60 minute ballet class

Tuesday | ran 5.16 miles outside in 60 minutesSlow as all hell, but I RAAAAAAAN!!!

Wednesday | ran 5.33 miles outside in 60 minutes

Thursday | walked 2.11 miles outside in 35 minutes; 60 minute ballet class

Friday | ran 5.44 miles outside in 60 minutes
I gotta say, the steady improvement has been heartening.

Saturday | rest
It was a busy day with a fair amount of walking, though. I visited my grandmother, had lunch with my parents, drove home, picked up Sarah, drove to Elizabeth’s house, walked to the Across the Bay 10k expo, drove back to Elizabeth’s, walked to Annapolis for dinner, walked back to Elizabeth’s house, and went to bed. Whee!

The race expo was pretty big for a 10k, but the corridors of the Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium were too narrow for the crowd. It was pretty chilly too, so we basically just grabbed our bibs and walked out.

Keep your fingers crossed that all this physical cooperation keeps up. And that the weather doesn’t get TOO frosty.

And that’s all I have to say about that.

In other news, Magic Bands and Magical Express tickets have arrived – mother/daughter WDW 2017 is almost upon us! I keep refreshing the WDW resort reservation system on the hunt for recent cancellations, but so far no dice. We’re probably stuck with Caribbean Beach. But hey, we’ll be in WDW – how much can I complain?

Roundup FTW: