I’m writing this post while a crazy snow blizzard takes hold of most of continental USA. Friends in Chicago are braving 60mph wind gusts and bracing for more than 2 feet of snow. Down here in Texas, we aren’t unaffected. Winds at more than 30mph, sub-zero temperatures and the worst combination of the two, the dreaded windchill.I’ve lived in Chicago and I know the brutal wind chills. That’s why I moved to Austin, Texas with my husband. It was the next best thing to California without the taxes! In fact, someone mentioned it may even be really warm on my birthday, early Feb. Imagine my dismay at the teeny bopper temps this week!
And imagine my greater dismay when Rogue didn’t cancel the quality workout today. Coach Lorrie even called out to me saying it wasn’t that cold ‘miss Chicago’! Well, it wasn’t like I ran in Chicago anyway. But, I like running when it’s cold. Wait let me say cold-ish. When it’s cold enough you don’t feel the strain. That’s not what I bargained for today.
5 people showed up in the half marathon beginners group. I assumed there would be enough crazies. But I was wrong. I was one of 5 whackos who showed up. When we began the jog to the track, it was 32F-felt like 18F. The wind in our faces twisted my words as I chatted with Marianne and Carol. We kept running and kept talking just to keep our minds off the wind. The usual run to the track, which has sometimes been a strain (including the one time trial workout that I choked), felt like a breeze, no pun intended. At the track, usual varying pace, alternating 400m at HMGP and 10K paces. Lorrie asked me to run easy since I’d just finished the race. But I ran with Marianne who, for a 54 year old has some pretty fast turnover on her feet. I remember struggling to keep up with her when I had joined the program. Not today. I was too cold to feel any strain. Heck, if I had the breath power I’d have run 9 min a mile. I ran the 8 laps on the track as fast as I could. Coming around south east facing was brutal against winds going NW. Pretty soon I lost my thighs to numbness, the hands and feet were frozen. Oddly enough in those temps, you’d rather be running. Even after finishing my laps, I kept running to keep warm.
On our run back, we passed East Side Pies, an East Austin pizza place that tempts Rogue runners every week. A young girl was rushing back to her car with her dinner. When she saw us, her jaw dropped open. She pointed at us, smiled with a raised brow and gave a thumbs up. Other drivers were not so charitable. They stared at us as if we were nuts. One of the runners said it was commendable I came out tonight despite the cold and having run a race. And then I thought, yeah what the hell was I thinking? I think running the race gave me some extra ‘josh’, rather foolish. Anyway, I think I felt my legs at least an hour later and full sensation only after a hot shower.
Amazed that people run races in such conditions. I was quite done with a short run, being out there for an hour. Folks complained that it was hot on the day of 3M 2011 and then proceeded to say it almost got blown away last year due to cold winds. I thank Mother Nature for giving me a good race and for freezing up 2 days later!