Friday, March 14, 2014

What a difference a day makes

It was finally nice out on Monday and Tuesday. There was less ice and snow, and the mercury tentatively crept above the freezing mark for the first time in way too damn long. Tempting fate, I ventured out of the house without a jacket for my evening runs, reveling in the lingering daylight that nearly made up for the disappearance of a precious hour of sleep.

Exposed skin! I've clearly lost my head.

Knicks again, and finally getting some of my Vanderkitten kit outdoors!

So refreshing to be able to run without my face covered or having to don pound after pound of insulation against the bitter cold this winter has brought. It reached a high of 9c/48f on Tuesday, and was still 4c/39f when I finished a snappy 10k that began as the sun was setting. The streets were mostly clear with just a few lingering bits of ice (thanks to the inconsiderate souls in my neighbourhood who take the Calgarian approach of "God put it there - God will take it away" to the snow on their sidewalks), and I was able to stretch out my stride a bit while dodging the puddles of meltwater.

Then, 24 hours later:


Wednesday brought 16cm/6" of snow as winter came howling in upon us once more. Temperature for my evening run was a frosty -11c/12f - with the sidewalks un-plowed and the wind gusting to 50kph/31mph, Tanker implored me not to go out as he feared for my safety. Stubborn as usual, I compromised with him; I still ran, but only around our block.

16 bloody times.

If this looks like the soft option, let me assure you it wasn't. Apart from the tediousness of doing endless laps while amused neighbours chortle over their shovels at your sheer idiocy, our block is a bit unique in its structure.

Imagine a standard running track. Now instead of 400m, make it 420m (by our best reckoning). Not so bad, right?

Now make one end of it approximately 9m/29.5' higher than the other. Ok, so you run up a bit of a hill on each loop.

Now cover than uphill in snow and make it directly into the stinkin' wind.

I've never been so ready for spring in my entire life. 

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