All week, I was looking forward to one run – the trail run at Kennesaw Mountain! Even though I started running these trails only a few months ago, I love the beautiful, historic and not too terribly difficult trails! Starting out along the side of the mountain just as the sun is coming up in front is one of those sights that I will never tire of!
When I woke up in the morning I could hear the wind howling. A quick glance at the weather channel said it was 20-25mph with gusts upto 35mph. My thoughts immediately went to Shawna, The Pease brothers and other friends who were waiting to start Ironman Florida in worse wind conditions and with rip currents thrown in! (The swim was eventually cancelled and everyone of them gritted out the tough bike conditions to run on to become Ironman.)
I am not one for canceling out on my long runs that easily, but I pondered on it for a long time. Even though Saturday morning was the only time I can squeeze in a weekend run.
“The wind is howling at 20+ mph with temps in 20s as I’m prepping to go on my trail run.
Be prepared for every condition on race day, I know! And this is nothing compared to what the real racers are facing today.
But at what point do you say – this is madness and take a step back and reschedule the long run.”
The opinion was split 50-50 between rescheduling and those who were already outside. I texted Mike and told him I was thinking of backing out. He left it up to my choice. Yay! But then added 2 sentences that stuck with me.
“The weather will only get worse as we get further into winter.”
With memories of last year’s freeze and Snowmageddon still fresh, I know that to be true. The weather patterns might be messed up with all the climate changes, but a cold winter is coming. But I still didn’t want to. Not that I am a featherweight, but that wind was making enough noise to let me know that it would toss me around without hesitation!
“A little mental toughness can go a long way.”
Even though the last thing I wanted to do was be tough in the cold wind, I knew he was right.
And so I went.
The sun was just coming up behind overcast skies and it didn’t seem as bad at 7:30am as it had felt in the dark at 7am.
The hardest part of the run was the first step – getting out of the front door.
Once that was done, everything else fell in place and was easy.
Ajit, one of my Dopey running buddies joined me (Barry is off running the New York City Marathon).The trees in the mountain shielded us, except for occasional gusts when we were out in the open. The trails were as beautiful as ever with plenty of deer sightings.
Much Ado About Nothing!
After all that back and forth, it wasn’t as bad as I expected. It felt like just any other cold chilly day.
The run whooped me towards the end as always, but it was an added sense of accomplishment when it was all done.
A New Mantra
I went blah (again) during that 1:30-2:00hr portion of my run where it is a steady uphill and I always seem to falter. But I thought of the earlier message “A little mental toughness goes a long way”. So instead of beating up myself that I sucked at that portion of time/distance, I accepted it as a part where I need to work on and resolved to just keep moving cheerful. Run slow(er), steady, walk if needed, but keep going cheerfully.
Thank you to all my friends who motivated me to go, and also to those who tried to talk sense into me (Mr. FauxTriathlete included, who rolled his eyes and said, “I’m not going to say anything.”). It was one of those days that makes you feel invincible (and achy!) after a run in not so favorable conditions.
The winter hasn’t even started and we’ve had such an extreme. What is your bottomline of weather conditions that makes you seek an alternative to running outside?
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