Last Run in the Snow?

Everyone was groaning about the cold weather and snow today, but I was pretty happy that I'd get to have one last run in the snow. Instead of running in the morning, I did yin yoga and saved my run for after work.

It was supposed to be a three-mile run at tempo pace (9:49). As soon as I got home I took my Energybits. I found that I was able to swallow three at once, so it didn't take too long to get them down. I dressed in my winter running gear and had a handful of pretzels and a tablespoon of chia seeds (which I ate plain because I like the taste) and was out the door.

I was super excited. It wasn't too cold (about 30) and snowing. I imagined the Energybits giving my feet wings and making my run super easy. The three-mile tempo run was an increase in the two-mile tempo run from the past two weeks.

Well, by the time my one-mile easy run to warm up was done, I was a little tired. I picked up the pace to tempo pace and, a half-mile into it, knew it would be impossible to do three. The snow was pelting my face, but I was determined to love what may be the last cold-weather run until next winter. I kept saying "I love the snow!" over and over in my head.

And really, it was pretty cool to see the spring daffodils and other flowers coming up, the magnolia trees in bloom, and other trees with fresh green buds...all from a veil of soft, fluffy snow.

By the time I'd done one-and-a-half tempo miles, I was cursing the Energybits (where were the wings on my feet?) and told myself I could stop at two-and-a-half tempo miles instead of doing all three. In yoga, teachers will say things like "Use what's available to you today" to modify your practice. I was convinced that three miles were not available to me.

But as I checked my Garmin, I realized that my heart rate was just right and I wasn't overdoing it, and my breathing felt good too. So what was wrong? Was it just mental? I read a quote somewhere related to running that said, "Your mind will quit 100 times before your body does."

So I switched my thinking to "You can do this," focused on my form and breathing, and kept running past the two-and-a-half miles until I got all three miles in. I did compromise and allowed myself to do only a half-mile of an easy run to finish instead of a full mile.

Maybe the Energybits did help after all...whether them or my mind or both, I pushed on when I didn't think I had it in me.

And overall it was nice to run in the snow one last time (although, I should probably knock on wood since we may not be out of the woods just yet).

Distance: 4.5 miles; Time: 47:54; Pace: 3 miles @ 9:49-10:10 pace sandwiched in between 11:30 pace

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