It’s like record breaking cold here…..I mean nose hair freezing cold. Friday is supposed to be a rest day but how many chances will I get to run in temps like today. Like I said, I might be crazy. So I picked out the appropriate attire. Which involved multiple layers.
When I look back on some of the things I’ve done in the name of getting a run in this is up there in crazy.
I used to run in the middle of the night on the back roads of North Carolina. By myself. In the dark. No cellphone. That to me is the craziest/dumbest thing I have done. Oh and I did it a lot. At the time I was a watch stander and work began at 6am. After a 12 hour workday sometimes I didn’t have the energy to run after work. Also 3am in the summer is about the only semi comfortable temperature wise. That’s not saying all that much though…..there’s just no sunshine beating down on you. I have run maybe 2 or 3 times at that time of the night since leaving North Carolina. Now I was probably pretty safe there but the real crazy people are everywhere, even Newport North Carolina. I was chased by dogs and geese on a fairly regular basis there and believe it or not the geese were scarier! To this day I give geese a wide berth.
On a few occasions I actually braved the oppressive North Carolina heat and humidity and God that was miserable. Nothing like sweating buckets a quarter mile into a 5 mile run. I think I had a touch of heat exhaustion on a few occasions. Also incredibly crazy.
I have run through blizzards and hurricane conditions. I’ve slipped and slid along icy roads and I still come back for more. I ran a half marathon in the pouring rain. The rain that day broke the previous record by over 2 inches, oh and it was hovering at somewhere between 35-40 degrees. I loved every minute of it. Until I stopped that is. Then the lower half tightened up to the point I could barely lift my feet up to take a step.
My love of running has taken me out into extreme weather and I’ve loved every single second of it. I truly believe that each run in the cold and heat at all that stuff in between helps me become a better runner. It reminds me appreciate the sunny and 65 running days.
Today was no different. So my coworkers and I took off around 1030 for a planned run of about 3.5 miles. Good God….that wind. It took the air out of my lungs. We ran a simple square starting at the Coast Guard Base up along the Delaware River. Then turned on to Market St. Clearly the 3 of us were the only ones who didn’t watch the weather forecast. We were pretty much the only people on the sidewalks. It was nice to not have to maneuver around pedestrians. We stopped for a quick selfie near mile 2 in Franklin Square.
We finally were closing in on the promise land of 3.5 miles. Of course when we came to a stop at the crosswalk my friend Allaster reminded me that yesterday I had said I wanted to run 5 miles today. Damn him! As I looked at him, in the hat I made him wear since he for some strange reason doesn’t own one and saw the mini icicles on his eyebrows I knew that I had another 1.5 in me. So off we went down the trail by the base. As we neared the turnaround I reached up to mess with my earbud. Holy crap, somehow I had worked up a sweat and the sweat had caused my hat to freeze to my ear.
It was about that time I also noticed I could no longer feel the lower half of my face. My little face/neck warmer wasn’t really working for me. Thank God we were almost done. Finally I saw the front gate for the base. Hallelujah!!!! We stopped, I mumbled something about my ear to the guys. I felt like I couldn’t form words. Probably had something to do with the extreme numbness that had settled in my face. Like someone had shot me full of novocaine and sent me on my way. We scrambled inside and proceeded to do our best to warm up.
It was only then that I looked down at my watch and saw we had been hauling butt! We ran 5 miles in 42 minutes….probably one of my fastest times for that distance. Perhaps the wind pushed me along more than I thought.
My ear still feels a little tender, but it’s not going anywhere and now I have just shown myself another level of toughness in myself. Plus a part of me really likes it when people look at me like I’m crazy.
The best part of the run today though wasn’t even the run itself which was amazing and I loved it. Before I headed out I saw one of the guys who works upstairs and he asked me if I was going to run outside. I said I was and another girl told him I was insane. He said that I was going to be his inspiration to run today. Because if I can brave the frigid temperatures and winds and run outside then he can definitely run on the treadmill.
That made my day! I always hope to inspire others with my running. I don’t look like a runner, I’m by no means a born runner but I run anyways. My stubbornness kept me coming back and helped make me who I am. Both in running and in life!!
In about 4 months when the mercury is pushing into the 90s I will remember today’s run, smile and soak up every single bit of the heat and humidity.
Until next time run happy and be safe!