Friday, December 11, 2009

I'm a Negative (Splits) Person

Yesterday's Run: Road. 35 degrees. (Wind chill very cold!) 4.1 miles; Splits: 8:56; 8:52; 8:29; 8:20; :48; 35:32; 8:37/mile average pace.

(First, I have accepted the fact that it's winter and my new running shoes will get dirty and wet. Thank-you blogging buddies for busting my ass and making me suck it up and be ok with this. I love you all)
Here comes a familiar theme. I didn't want to run yesterday. I'm a weather wimp. I don't like running in the cold, although if my times continue to improve like they have been, I may change my mind. I rushed home after work yesterday and quickly changed into my running attire. The nice thing about living 7 miles from where I work and getting out at 3 p.m. is that I can get home in time to get out and run before the ridiculously early 4:20 p.m. sunset. Another week and a half to go before we start getting a later sunset, but who's counting? (I am). Anyhow, it was 35 degrees outside and windy!!! Yes, it was windy with three exclamation points. I convinced logical left brain that it was going to be ok to go out and run since 1) I was dressed warmly; 2) I was only going to run for half an hour; and 3) Once a mile or so passed, I would warm up and all would be well. Left brain agreed it was alright to run. So out the door I went. Two minutes into my run, I was about ready to turn and head back home. As I reached the crest of a hill I was met by a very cold north wind that was blowing strong. I don't usually have difficulty breathing during cold weather runs, but this wind took my breath away. I was gasping as the cold air reached my lungs. I quickly took a strategic left turn down a side street so that the wind was no longer blowing directly into my face. The quarter mile detour worked. As I reached mile one, still unnamed Garmin beeped and displayed an 8:56. Anytime I start with a sub 9 minute mile I'm encouraged, since my mile splits generally improve once I've warmed up. A left turn back onto the road I had left meant the cold wind was again in my face. At that point I was warmed up, so the wind was actually a plus. I wandered off the street a few times to add on mileage, figuring I'd get to the mile and a half turnaround point that much quicker and closer to home. As I reached 2 miles, still unnamed Garmin barely beeped (it was cold) and an 8:52 appeared. At that point I was feeling so good that I decided to up my run to 4 miles. I was headed back home with the wind at my back and feeling great. I was a running machine, and couldn't wait to see my mile 3 split. Another barely audible gasp from still unnamed Garmin, and an 8:29 split appeared. "No way" I said out loud! It had become another effortless run, and an uphill and a downhill, across the one-way bridge, left onto my street I completed my 4.1 miles in front of my next door neighbor's house in 35:25. My last mile was an 8:20; last tenth of a mile in 48 seconds; overall average split per mile was an 8:37. As I said earlier, I may just become a cold weather running addict if my times continue to improve. Good luck to any of you out there running races this weekend. I'm doing a 5K on Sunday. I promise you that race report and the after race party report will be one worth waiting for. I'm going to try to get a quick start and go for a PR. I don't know if that will be possible since it's a new course this year which I'm not familiar with, it goes along narrow streets, and about 1500 runners will be running it.


Meg Runs said...

I totally get it with racing home after work just to get that run in! People at work always watch me run out the door and they don't get it! It's great that your times are improving, I think it's too cold and your body knows you just need to get!

Meg Runs said...

Freezing cold for me? Hummm...last Tuesday night at track-42 degrees. Ice-like lips and red nose. WIMPY, I know.

Lisa said...

Wow you are fast! I agree about the cold weather. As much as I hate it I seem to run faster in it. I was kinda looking forward to running this winter in the cold but that'll have to wait for a bit.

Funny about your comment on days getting longer. I already checked to see when daylight saving begins... second Sunday in March if I remember correctly. Definitely looking forward to longer days.

Thanks Rick for dedicating your Saturday runs to me. It means a lot to me.

lindsay said...

"not really wanting to run" is a conversation i have with myself daily!! lol. especially now that it's chilly. not very welcoming to step outside in not-furry-warm clothing! brr. but of course, we continue to subject ourselves to it in the name of greater good.

hope the 5k went well!