Tag Archives: snow

Froze My Butt Off

Finally some wintery weather has descended in the Philly suburbs. 

A light dusting of snow arrived Friday night and then the temperatures plummeted into the low teens Fahrenheit.  

This led to some great playtime with the kids on Saturday and to a very cold run on Sunday morning. 

The actual temp listed was 13F but the real feel was 3F; so getting the right kit was imperative. 

Kit included:

  • Snowboarding socks
  • Under armour underoos (an extra layer for butt)
  • Sugoi winter leggings
  • Under armour cold weather long sleeve shirt (x2)
  • Cycling wind breaker layer (has long back pockets that also cover your butt). Make sure this is a visibility colour against snow; do not wear white or grey. 
  • Balaclava
  • Baseball cap
  • Winter mittens

10 miles later, all that froze was my butt. My face and hands were toasty. I wore my iPhone holder inside my outer layer to stop the phone from freezing up. 

I wasn’t fast but then no one would be with all those layers on. 9:07 average pace reported by Nike+. 

I’m writing this sitting on a heat pad to defrost my extremities 🙂

Tech-wise I ran with my Lumo Run device today and I got ‘in the green’ results for four of the five measured categories, with the only exception being my hip rotation. 

I used Nike+ on my Apple Watch for tracking and started it from my watch. This meant that to hear the announcement for distance and speed I had to hold the watch up to my head as the sound wasn’t routed through my headphones that were connected to my iPhone. Nike really need to get their integration worked out. 

Now to get showered before my sweat causes me to get a chill. 

Have a warm week. 


Slipping and A-sliding

Be careful out there as it is treacherous in the North East USA at the moment. 

I went out for a run and fell over because I was continually transitioning from sidewalks (pavements) to the roadway. The remaining ice from the storm seems to mainly be in those areas and if you try to change direction on it… You’ll go over. 

I think it is better to stick with being on the roads at this point. Be sure to choose roads that have been cleaned and that offer enough space for cars to easily pass you. 

Wear bright (non-White) clothing and flashing lights. 

Another problem I had with the sidewalks was that I would run down a  stretch that had been cleared only to find it dead-ends at a snow bank where the person’s neighbour hadn’t cleared their path. This left me to dive through several three foot deep drifts of snow to get back to the road. Grr. 

Other advice: look for cleared trails and try to run then when the temp is above freezing to avoid ice patches. Most townships do these last so you may have to miss a run if you don’t want to be on the road. 

Take care, my friends. 

First Footing Fresh Snow

Finally the snow has arrived in south-eastern Pennsylvania. It took until mid-January, but it has arrived. 

This meant that on Wednesday morning I got to go out early and ‘first foot’ many areas around my house. 

I chose a long hilly route that mixed roads and woodland. 

The roads were fine as it was only a light snow fall but you have to be extra careful when traffic approaches as they may not be able to easily move out around you. 

Wearing lots of bright clothing and make sure that it is NOT white. Green and orange are best. Also, blinky lights will let traffic see you from further and give them more time to adjust their road position and speed. 

Running through the woods can be a little tricky. You have to keep your eyes open for covered roots and look out for ice on the hills… In both directions! Running uphill and downhill gives traction issues. 

With temperatures in the single digits (9F) it was a very cold morning. This meant I needed an extra layer to cope with the wind, a neck gator and a hat. Mummification. 

And again today I was out with temps around 14F. I run the risk of using all my clothes up before the next wash cycle as I’m wearing so many layers each time I go out… Especially as I’ve riden to work a couple of times this week too! 

Stay warm, everyone. 

First Footing: Does it Count If Only a Dusting?

Despite the forecasts of grave ice and snow for Monday/Tueaday we have been given only a light dusting of snow, similar to sugar dust on a Victoria sponge cake (rumble rumble).

I was out early today as there are a lot of things to get done (meeting someone for lunch, careers fair, mentor group meetup). So at 5:45 I hit the streets and did a quick 4 miler, avoiding the deer who seemed to be stalking me throughout the run.

Mapmyrun failed again today. There was a new update available but that shouldn’t make the old version crash. So I’ve guessed my pace as very fast and super strong.

Seems only fair given how early I went out. 🙂
Now to find some cake…

Level Up Your Crazy

Today I had a run/walk scheduled with my friend despite the light snow that was coming down.

We headed to a section of the Schuylkill River Trail that we hadn’t attempted before between Phoenixville and Royersford. There was about an inch and a half of snow on the ground so enough to slow us down and make surfaces slippery. It was about 20F.

For most of the trail we were the ‘first footers’ on the pristine snow. I always like it when I get the opportunity to do this. /home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/5e7/55986753/files/2015/01/img_4150.jpgMy friend had injured his knee earlier in the week climbing over a fallen tree on another trail so we were trying to be careful with our efforts so as not to make it any worse.

However, we chose to up our intervals to one minute on and four recovery. This worked out well for us. But we were manually timing and didn’t do all the intervals. Oops.

The trail is quite winding and has some gentle rolling hills, but is quite picturesque, if you ignore the old power station that appears to be shutdown now.

The run was was good and represents another level of madness for my friend; going out running in the snow. Hehehe. There’s no going back!

5.5 miles done.

First Tracks for an Easy Three Mile Recovery

Surprise! It snowed again overnight. 2.5 inches so far and it is still coming down slowly. I had the honour of making first tracks this morning as few cars had gone by and no snow ploughs yet. I did have to cross the road once as a snow plough bombed past me.

My legs felt leaden when I first started; trying to shake out the lactic acid from Sunday’s 18 miler. Feeling better after the run and it is always a cool thing to run as snow is coming down. 3.2 miles in 26:12 giving a pace of 8:11. It is supposed to be a 9:02 but that isn’t happening. I actually wanted to run it faster but my legs wouldn’t comply.

Roads were also nice and empty as everyone was scraping down their driveways. It is nice to have people to say “good morning” to as you scoot by.

Popsicle Chin and Eighteen Long Miles

Back in the US and running on snow covered back streets. It was a cold 25F actual with a feel in the single digits when I went out this morning. The cold wind froze my chin. Is there a point that it is too cold for your chin? I just massaged it and then dug out my neck warmer and put it back on (I had it stowed inside my jacket; just in case).

Part of my route today was along a road that has a “bridge out” which always reminds me of the classic movie “Smokey and the Bandit”. It has actually been replaced but they haven’t put up the guard rails yet so they haven’t officially opened it to traffic. This road was completely unplowed (unploughed?) and the snow was mid-calf to knee height for a quarter of a mile. By the end of it I was stumbling along, but I kept a sort of running pace. Very high knees seemed to be the key!

Eighteen miles is a long way and today I gave in and plugged in headphones at a ridiculously low volume level so I could hear some podcasts while I ran (The Bugle, WTF!, BBC News Quiz). Whenever cars were near, I couldn’t hear the podcasts, that’s how quiet I had them set.

I was definitely plodding along today, whether that is because of all the travel, the bumped up workout on Friday, too much partying last week… I’m not sure. Suffice to say that I ran around the actual speed that the program suggests I should run. I did eighteen miles in 2:43:31 with two brief stops to cross roads and adjust neck gaiter. That is a 9:04 pace. To be honest there were some places where I just had to shuffle along because the ice was so thick and I could not go around it. In general the roads were okay, but there were some problems and they were mainly on hills, so that made them more treacherous.

Since getting home I’ve had an uncontrollable urge for a milky coffee (large cup of milk, boiled in microwave, then add instant coffee; yum) and it is helping to make me feel warmer from the inside.

Despite the temperatures I still managed to sweat off quite a lot of weight during the run. My pre-run weight was 152 and post-run was 147. I did drink one bottle of water while u was out there, but clearly not enough to offset what I sweated off!

Yum. I think I’m going to have a second cup of that.

In general, I don’t feel too bad after the run. A little weak at the edges and very grateful to have access to a bathroom, but that was all really. My knee was clicking as I climbed the stairs but doesn’t seem to have any issues. Next week will be a challenge as it has my first 20 mile run. Hopefully the roads and trails will be clear of snow by then and I’ll be able to do some of those miles actually on proper trails.

Recovery Week: Easy Run #1

The crazy weather here continues and we had about eight inches of snow again yesterday. The really wet heavy snow too. This year has been crazy in the Philly region.

I still went out on the roads today. This recovery week has a six mile easy run scheduled for today and it was lovely out there. Brisk cold air. A light snow covering on the roads that had mainly been ploughed.

The ‘Other Runner’ said “Good morning” again today. Also, the runner is a she. How she runs in predawn light with no lights and wearing black is beyond me.

Six miles in 49:03 is an avg pace of 8:09 and the splits look good too!

20140204-065417.jpgNegative split centralé!

Welcome Home: Back to Running in Snow

We arrived back in PA late last night to find five inches of snow covering the ground. Quite a shock after returning from Texas. The temperature when we got in last night was 9F without factoring in the wind! Brrr.

So today I had to scrape the drive and pathways clear then head out for a quick run to try and get my legs moving again.

2.5 miles with a 7:57 pace is not bad when the roads are all slushy and have ice patches. It was about 20F in the sun when I went out so not too bad but it looks like there are some super cold days coming this week and just as my marathon training plan has to start. Tuesday AM may be around 0F.

The new Saucony Omni’s are very comfortable but are wearing really quickly in much the same way that my Brooks shoes did, and only after 16 miles in them. This is worrying as it probably means it is something wrong with my gait that is causing the issue. I suspect that I am dragging my toes as I place them on the ground. Not too sure what to do about that.

Also, I spoke to those lovely people at Brooks and they have agreed to exchange the new Beast shoes that they sent me for a pair of their Adreneline shoes (which I also tried on at the store and were highly recommended). Sweet. I just have to return the unused pair of Beasts. What lovely people they are. Great customer service!

20140104-113704.jpgThis is the way the soles look now. If you compare with the image below you’ll see all the tread pattern from the outside row has already gone and the sharp edge has disappeared. Yikes.

20140104-113825.jpgAnd this is how they looked originally.

Oh Yeah: My Revenge on the Elements

Contrary to my normal behaviour I actually managed to get out later in the day on Sunday and squeeze in a nice Long Slow Distance run of 11.8 miles. Lots of hills. Lots of snow, ice and slush. Mainly courteous drivers and now feeling a whole lot better. 1900 ft of gain and 8:23 pace which includes stopping to take photos as my phone didn’t pause the run.

I was miserable that I couldn’t get out this morning and that’s why I forced myself out this afternoon. I guess that just means that I am addicted to the endorphins and serotonin from running. Oh well, there are worse things I could be addicted to.

I took a couple of pictures of some icicles while I was out there for my daughter.


I also took a panorama of where I’d come from and where I was headed.