Friday, January 31, 2014


For the second week this month, I skipped a short run.  Even though they were no more than 5 miles, missing them still lowered my total weekly mileage.  It has been really difficult for me to muster up any kind of motivation to run in the cold weather.  Yes, I know there are people running in North Dakota and Canada (cuckoo...).  Did I mention that I have very low blood pressure?  Like 90/50.  After giving birth to my son in the hospital, my doctor was one beat away from zapping me with the defibrillator because my blood pressure was "not compatible with life" (I love the way she worded it!).  I drive with the heat on the "hell" setting and keep my hands on the vents unless I'm turning.  If you're going to be a passenger in my car, dress accordingly.  Layers.

 I also have been slowing most of my runs down to a 9 minute pace.  In the past, it was hard to keep pace without a Garmin.  I wound up running almost a minute faster per mile during what should have been slow, easy runs.  I was physically worn out by the end of my last training cycle.  The past couple of weeks I ran with Map My Run activated to help me regulate myself.  My 12 miler on Monday was run at a 9:08 pace, and yesterday's 11 miler was an 8:58 pace.  Tuesday I ran 10 miles, 5 of which were supposed to be run at half marathon pace (7:48).  For the life of me, I could not do it.  Despite what I thought was a hard effort, I could only get myself to an 8:06 and it only lasted 3 miles.  It was pretty cold out, my toes were frozen and breathing was difficult.  I hope the weather is to blame, rather than me falling apart.  I know there will be some point in my life where my running times will plateau.  I just hope it's much later.

Oh yeah, I also have been dealing with shin splints for the first time in my life.  The intermittent dull aching has been bugging me for about two months.  Have I been treating them?  Let's just say that rubbing ice on my legs in the middle of this polar vortex is the last thing on my to-do list (quite possibly the first thing on my to-don't).

Okay, I'm done whining.

How have you been able to run this winter?


  1. Maybe I'll bring along a cattle prod when we run together to jolt your blood pressure back to life sustaining levels. You can in turn use it on me to force me to keep up with you guys.

    Your move to more moderate training paces makes sense. I've read a lot of recent articles that support doing a majority of runs below anaerobic threshold and doing one run a week that focuses on performance. The cold weather can help performance to a degree but I find that benefit is counteracted by the layers of clothing I wear on the run that restrict movement and cause overheating.

    In terms of the shin splints, do you have calf compression sleeves? They might help. Also, the YakTrax might be throwing off your alignment and contributing to the problem.

  2. I had no idea you were going through that. I noticed your training pace slowed down a bit, and I secretly congratulated you remembering what you said about your previous marathon training. I believe it's this cold weather and decreased sunlight that is effecting some of us. I don't believe you have plateaued. It is too early in your running career for that, especially being that you haven't incurred injuries. I think the shin splints are probably because you are trying to avoid stuff on the roads when you run. When conditions improve, so will your shins.