Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Dashing through the Snow

Dashing Through the Snow

So, I didn't run barefoot or in a skirt, but I am still recovering from a 5K I ran on Sunday in St. Vital Park. It was called the First Annual Run Your Heart Out Run/Walk in support of the Canadian Diabetes Association. I have to admit, my heart was fine, but I did have some concerns about my ears and toes.

It was my own silly fault, of course. It was -16C and I decided not to bother with a hat because I tend to get very hot on top of my head when I exercise. The obvious answer is a headband, and I do actually own one, but unfortunately I didn't bring it. I did have gloves on (not really warm enough), and I was the only person not wearing a windbreaker (although I did have a warm jacket from Iceland). I was wearing my normal padded running socks and outdoor running shoes (which hadn't seen any use since November or so).

I have to say, it was fun, except for the cold ears and toes. I definitely did not miss the windbreaker - I was sweating inside my Iceland jacket. We ran on the road that loops around the park (about 2.5 times around to make up the 5K). The snow was freshly plowed, there was no visible ice and it was in fact not slippery at all. My husband had expressed some concern about breathing freezing air but I, at least, did not experience any difficulty from this. My ears did warm up after about 2K, on their own so I'm not concerned about frostbite. My toes took longer to recover but appear to have suffered no ill effects. I probably should have put more moisturiser on my hands and face.

I'm a slow runner at the best of times, and of course, what with the snow and the preoccupation with my sore bits, I clocked in just over 40 minutes, one of the last people in (if not the last). I honestly don't care. I did it, I finished it, and I'm very proud of myself. The people who were ahead of me ran faster but also took walking breaks. I decided to stick to a steady slow jog - maybe it's not the best way to go, but I did run the entire 5K without a single break. I do know about the advantages of intervals, so I'm debating in my mind what to do next time.

Runs can only get warmer from here on out. I'm trying to decide whether to stick with 5Ks and try to get faster, or look at moving up to a 10K - although, if I stay with this pace it would take me nearly an hour and a half! Not even thinking about the half marathon at this stage ... and I'm not looking for distance for distance's sake. I just want to be healthy and happy and do things that make me feel good.

What do you think? Which way should I go?

1 comment:

  1. I say stick with 5K for a few more races. There is a big difference between running for 1/2 hour and running for an hour. You can't really extrapolate from your current results.

    Running the whole way is good. If your time is the only thing that matters to you, you'll probably get to the finish line sooner if you run fast and then walk, but you won't do much for your stamina.

    Gotta say, I would never run in that kind of cold. I not used to it, and the way I breathe when I run would really do a number on my lungs. Your slow jog is what saved you there, I'm sure.

    I am very impressed that you ran and finished in those conditions. I'd do another couple of 5Ks in better weather, then see if you want to work up to longer distances. When you can run 5 miles on a training run, then you are ready for a 10K.


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