Sunday, December 03, 2006

Feels like twelve.

I didn't make it to the big 2-0 on my long run this morning.

The run I did complete (about 16 miles) was made at an impressively slow pace. I don't think I could have gone any slower unless I was standing still. Or moving backwards, in the opposite direction of where I really wanted to go. Allow me to explain why.

It all has to do with the phrase "Feels like" As in,
Expected high today: 37 F, with variable winds from the north to northeast.
Current temperature, 17 F.
Feels like 12 F.

Did you read that? It feels like twelve degrees farenheit. FEELS. LIKE. TWELVE.

Now, I'm not one to back away from a challenge, so I forged ahead. I am a serious cold weenie, though, and it was cold. Darn cold. Damned cold. Don't even bother trying to one-up me with how you went running up in Fargo or Fairbanks and it was ten below or you did the Naked Pumpkin run in the snow. I don't care; this isn't a contest, you win, shut up.

The first thing I noticed on the running trail, was that even the horses and homeless people weren't around. Did you read that? HORSES AND HOMELESS PEOPLE WERE WISER THAN I TODAY; THEY FOUND SOME PLACE BETTER TO BE THAN OUTSIDE RUNNING.

I did get a sense, however, of exactly who the insane die-hard runners are, because they were out there. Another club to which I now belong. I'm now an insane runner.

Anyway, just in case you aren't familiar with what running at this temperature feels like, I will share with your what "FEELS LIKE TWELVE" feels like.
  • It feels like the icy tendrils of death and chasing your down and working their way inside your clothes.
  • It feels like someone pressing their thumbs, hard, on your cheekbones, until they ache, when the wind blows across your face.
  • It feels like, if you turn your head left or right, even one iota, your glasses will fog up for about the next 15 minutes.
  • It feels like a pair of running pants OVER your running tights and your butt is still cold.
  • It feels like your hands are curled up inside your gloves and your fingers still hurt like hell from the cold.
  • It feels like your asthmatic lungs refusing to function because they just can't handle air that cold, so that you basically spend over 3 hours not able to get your breath.
  • It feels like wearing neoprene on your face and still feeling the cold. NEOPRENE. ON. YOUR. FACE.
  • It feels like trying to get your Hammer gel, now an amorphous solid, out of your gel flask, and being largely unsuccessful until you stick it in your bra for twenty minutes (I've since learned that I should add some water to it in advance).
  • It feels like idly wondering if the neoprene thing you have on your face, which is too big because you borrowed it from your Clydesdale husband, is basically creating a pocket of carbon dioxide around your mouth so that you just continuously inhale your own exhalations.
  • It feels like the crunching noise that the Clif Blok made when you bite down on it. DID YOU READ THAT? MY CLIF BLOKS WERE CRUNCHY.
  • It feels like imagining newstories with passages like,

    "Her body was found propped up against a tree, a package of solid Clif Bloks in one hand and frozen Hammer Gel flask in another. She looked pissed."

  • Feels like demanding a trip to Sportz Outdoorz to get a running jacket, insulated tights, glove liners, and my own sized neoprene thingy for my face.
Which we did. Sweet Baboo is a very smart man. He's heard the jokes long enough to know that there's some truth in them; "if she ain't happy, ain't nobody happy".) and I wasn't happy.

Worst run I ever had, but, as Sweet Baboo put it, I did it.

My reward was a pair of insulated conditioning tights, Brooks energy jacket, thermal glove liners, and a neoprene thingy for my face. At least I got new stuff.

Next weekend, if its this cold, I'll be ready.



  1. Anonymous6:31 PM

    16 miles is ummmm 26-ish 12 degrees F, which is ummmm...pretty f*&%ing cold in Celsius!!
    you are a legend and I am glad you have lots of nice warm stuff to run in now.

  2. Anonymous7:46 AM

    You make me laugh so hard. Not at you of course, but more of a been there done that laugh. Pray for warm weather next weekend.

  3. Well done!

    Jeez, if I have to wrap my head in neoprene, I think something is badly wrong. Though I may have to get a neoprene cap for the early season open water swims next year. We'll see.

  4. Anonymous12:24 PM

    Wow, that is a bit cool for long runs. I find that I enjoy temperatures in the 20s for my favorite runs, but below that, it becomes a bit of an endurance contest.

    Glad to see you got some great new gear out of the deal.

    P.S. When I first read your post concerning neoprene the first thing that came to my mind was Saran Wrap, and I was wondering how you would breathe encased in Saran Wrap. But then I came to my senses.

  5. LOL. I am glad I wasn't the only one battling the cold weather yesterday morning. My run was a lot shorter, I can't imagine how you managed to stay out there that long!!

  6. Cold weather is bad. No more frozen tears for me. Please add me to the list including horses and homeless people...Mary Sunshine was plodding along in the house this weekend...can't one up you there but you might have been proud of my geekiness... check my blog for a pic of me training with my computer attached to my aero bars in my living room. ;-)

  7. LOL! Thanks for the laugh - that was hilarious! (I think the 'thaw stuff in bra' trick is a definite bonus to being an Athena!)

  8. To think I had my cushy 11am brick in Hyder Park whilst you were out there freezing all your cheeks off.


    glad I wasn't. It was cold enough where I was. Brrr!


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