Sunday, February 22, 2015

The end is in sight, and CTR is just around the corner

The weather's been brutal the past few weeks - with heaps of snow and cold that's made running miserable. I've tried not to complain. After all, we live in Canada and we have winter. It goes with the territory.

However, it's hard to keep from getting a wee bit blue by the time late February rolls around. Post-holiday weight gain, short cold days, and poor conditions make running feel much more difficult than at other times of the year. It's easy to say "winter running makes you stronger" but it's hard to feel genuinely enthused when temperatures dip to -20C, sidewalks and roads are covered with snow and ice, and you'd rather stay warm by the fire.

Fortunately, the end is in sight. Spring is less than a month away and, while that's no guarantee the snow and ice will be gone anytime soon, it shouldn't be long before warm breezes blow often enough to make running outside easier.

Which is a good thing since race season will be upon us in no time. Husband and I have tentatively committed to running a local half marathon (Run Our Shore) in early May and I'm thinking about a fourth Cabot Trail Relay at the end of May. Former teammates David and Crystal stepped up to co-captain this year so I met with them today to share my experiences as last year's captain. I'd really love to run CTR again. It's a fantastic event! However, our our 25th wedding anniversary is the same weekend so I'm still negotiating with Husband. If I am running CTR again, I need to get busy doing hill and speed work. CTR isn't for the faint of heart or for the under-prepared. And, who knows, Husband's training is going so well perhaps he'll feel like running it too.

Speaking of training, I managed a decent 11k long run yesterday, despite challenging conditions and a wicked charley horse Friday night that left my right calf sore and tender. As I limped around the house last evening, I wondered if it has been a mistake to run on a sore leg but it felt much better by this morning so apparently no serious harm was done.

Today's run hasn't happened yet because it's been raining all day, which is a nice change but has resulted in my usual route being covered in ankle-deep slush. I'll head into town shortly to see if I can find a more appealing place to run 5k before we head back to the city.

The rain is good for another reason. A few weeks ago, ice dams formed on the roof of our country house and water began seeping into an exterior wall whenever temperatures got warm enough to melt the snow piled on the roof. Most of the water passed through without damaging anything but, with heavy rain in today's forecast, we were worried the situation might get worse in a hurry. Husband did some research and discovered he could break up the dams by cutting trenches in the ice with an axe and placing nylon stockings filled with de-icer to keep them open so that water would be able to find its way off the roof without detouring into the house. He got the job done but it wasn't easy since it meant manhandling a 28- foot ladder into and out of the thigh-deep snow surrounding the house. By the end of the day, the leaking had stopped, there was far less snow on the roof and the ice dams were considerably smaller so hopefully that's the the end of the problem for this year. (Have I mentioned lately how grateful I am to have a strong, handy and handsome husband who also enjoys running? Well, I am! :-) )

So that's it for this week, friends. I hope you and yours are surviving the last gasps of winter (assuming you have winter where you are). How's your training going? Are you looking forward to any special running or other events this year?


  1. There is lots of winter yet to come here. March is usually a big snowfall month. Nice now, though and I'm enjoying. I will have to remember that bit about the ice dams! Ankle deep slush, yuck! that's no fun at all.

    1. There'll be more here too, Keith, but interspersed with sunnier, warm days which will make it a bit more bearable. And you're right about the slush. I went into town to run tonight and did my best to avoid it but I still came home with soaking wet shoes and socks. Thank goodness for smart wool! Enjoy your warm runs while they last!