Saturday, December 10, 2011

This Week in Running 12-10 Edition

I can't get rid of it. Running has truly taken hold of me. This week I finished out with a total of 40.5 miles. I had the pleasure of running in the snow for the first time. I even had my eyelashes freeze together for the first time ever. To top it off I set a new distance PR at 9 miles. Notably I may not have followed my diet as well as I possibly could but I am blaming that on the holidays and the abundance of temptation. My weight really didn't move anywhere but I am accepting of that when I am making strides in other categories.
The week started of great deciding to up my daily mileage to 6 miles. I ran a nice quick 1 hour flat for my first attempt. Tuesday was a bit slower, nothing special to report there. Wednesday I dropped 30 seconds per mile to finish the 6 miles in 57 minutes flat. Felt great about that. I am starting to hope/think that my race pace might be something like 9 minute miles. I will have to work up to that for the longer distances. Thursday I ran an uneventful 6 miles, slowly, at about 10:30 miles.
Friday the snow started! I was stoked. I went out Thursday morning excited to run with a fresh half inch or so of powder. It was amazing. The snow felt like soft pad under my feet and I didn't feel like I was getting half the impact I had gotten when running on the sidewalks normally. It also lit up the streets. I run early, 5:30 am or so each morning. Normally it is dark and it feels like you are running from streetlight to streetlight. With a fresh layer of snow covering the ground it was a whole new world. The moon wasn't out but I could still see clearly. The visibility coupled with the falling snow gave me the best view I have ever had running.
Saturday was a different day with the snow half melted and refrozen and a new low temperature of 12 degrees F. The snow was crunchy underfoot and there was ice everywhere. During the first couple of miles I was concerned it might not be safe conditions but as I moved along my confidence went up and up. Notably this run while being my longest yet also happened to have to most hills of any run I have done yet also. The hills did add a bit of stress to it but somehow I persevered and with a great time fore me also. I finished just over nine miles in 1:33. I don't think I could ask for much more, however I did get a little bonus. I got to watch it go from being pitch black outside with a clear night sky and a near full moon, to watching the sun rise on my home stretch. The sunrise on a cold clear morning like this was while you are out reaching new heights is an amazing feeling. I did find out that my lower eyelashes can freeze to the upper ones and that is something you have to wipe away. I also found some accumulated ice on myself when I came in the house finally. I never thought that ice would be able to form on me while I was running, however I assure you it can.
I also did just a little cross-training this week with a recumbent stationary bike on Friday night. I mostly did this so that while I was watching a couple of shows on Hulu.com so that I wouldn't feel to guilty and to test it out as a possible viable option for workout replacement on the coldest of mornings. As far as I can tell, it just won't cut it for me. Remember you can always see my workouts on mapmyrun.com by friending me, plato30, or get updates by following me on twitter @jmhalstead, or on Facebook, James Halstead in Wyoming, MI. Until next time happy running!

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