Sunday, February 19, 2006

Cold Spell Finally Breaking So I Ran 12

powdery snow
dusts the footbridge
spanning the frozen stream

OK, I know it's really, really cold further north in Chicago, or Minneapolis, or any number of other places north of my present location. But it has been freaking cold in Kansas City! I flew in on Friday to do some work on the house. Friday night the low was 3F. Wind chill was like -10 or so. And I gotta get up in the morning and replace a garage door opener?! Yeah, fun.

And about that running? Well, Friday was a day off after Thursday's 10-miler (a rest day). Saturday was scheduled to be a recovery run -- an easy 4-miler. Well, I decided that since I put in an extra 4-mile run at the beginning of the week (to make up for missing last Sunday's run due to the Blizzard), I might be able to miss Saturday's run. The high was supposed to be about 15F.

So I got the garage door opener replaced; an operation that would have been done in half the time had the temperature been warmer. Once that was complete, Kai and I went out to catch the remainder of the Kansas Univ. trouncing of Mizzou. One large beer, a few wings and a burger later, there was no way I was going to do that 4 mile run anyway. Besides, the forecast called for a bit of warming on Sunday. Mid-20's!

And so, this afternoon, I finally got a good medium long run in. I ran on my old course from the house out onto the trail system. 12 miles. At a pretty good pace. I did the first 6 miles out in exactly 54 minutes; 9 minutes on every mile. As I turned around, I decided I would just take it easy and not worry about maintaining the pace. But when miles 7, 8 and 9 also came in right at 9 minutes each, I knew I was going to have to maintain the pace to the end. Mile 10 has a nasty hill so I knew I would slow a bit, but mile 11 has a long gentle downhill so I knew I would also more than make it up. I did just that. About 15 seconds over pace on mile 10 (9:15), and 45 seconds under pace for mile 11 (8:15). The last mile has another crappy hill in the first half, but it's smooth going after that. I pushed it a bit up the hill and was running just over my 9 minute pace at the halfway point. The last half mile, I just cranked it up to about an 8 minute pace. Finished in 1:47:13 -- 48 seconds faster on the return trip. It was a great run (despite the cold).

And speaking of cold... I don't recall ever having icicles form in my hair. I've been growing my hair out a bit, and when I finished, there were several icicles hanging off the back of my hair (frozen sweat!). Weird, in a cool sort of way. Anyway, I leave you with a second haiku inspired by today's run:

the dark stream
flows in silence
beneath the ice


Blogger Tammy said...

Doesn't matter what it's doing elsewhere in the world... that is DAMN cold! As always, my fellow-bloggers bring me a bit of perspective.

Loving the poetry :)

2/19/2006 11:26 PM  
Blogger Anne said...

My eyelashes and eyebrows used to freeze on long runs during really cold spells, and I learned the hard way once not to touch them until they thaw. Nobody believed me when I explained the hair just "broke off" during a run. But it's true. So true.

2/20/2006 12:00 PM  
Blogger boiledpnut said...

That was a GREAT run!

2/20/2006 1:16 PM  
Blogger Rae said...

Great job!! That was COLD! I find all of the salt, icicles, etc we runners end up with to be so fascinating!

2/21/2006 7:06 AM  
Blogger runninturnip said...

It seems to be the fact that we runners CAN say we have had icicles in our hair, or dirt in our teeth or what have you that makes us proud! Sounds like a great run to me!

2/21/2006 9:27 AM  
Blogger E-Speed said...

sounds like a great run!

love all the haikus! Keep em coming!

2/21/2006 1:24 PM  

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