Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Run Ottawa Running Streak - Days 2 to 5

After a couple of months of recording runs (mostly) every day, I decided to take a few days off to reset.  I also wanted to write up a couple of posts about the mental myths I busted and lessons I learned.

Day 5

I remembered my pants today.  If that sounds strange to you, please read Day 4 for a bit of context.  It was a good thing because, like yesterday, it is really cold outside and running this evening on the treadmill will be tough time-wise.

By the time I got out there, the temperature had climbed to a tropical -19 with negligible winds.  The bright sunshine was especially welcome because before yesterday we really haven't seen the sun for a couple of weeks.  I wore a thermal base layer top and bottom and an extra thermal half-zip shirt.  I pulled on nylon pants and my Brooks Storm jacket with a neck gaiter, toque and Mizuno Breath Thermo gloves and crew socks.  I can't say enough good things about the Mizuno Breath Thermo line of winter clothing.  I have to watch that I put on my BT jacket just before I leave the house or else I will start overheating.  I have been using their socks and gloves all the time over the past two winters and swear by them.

Because I didn't know what the footing would be like along the Canal, I eschewed the scheduled interval workout and just set out to do 30 minutes steady.  I ended up deciding to run to the Canal Ritz and back, and the footing was fine - a bit ice covered, but not noticeably slippery.  I brought my phone with me and completed episode 10 of Zombies, Run!.  Intervals can be done tomorrow.

I felt a little tired while running and the extra layers of clothing felt restrictive.  I didn't really feel warmed up and smooth until I was about 30 minutes into the run, just eight minutes from the end.  Nice.  When I look at the data, my pace was decent and my HR was right in the zone I wanted.  It just felt slow and difficult.  I probably need to get some more sleep at night and get accustomed to wearing a bunch of clothing.  Running in just the 4 S's (shorts, shirt, socks and shoes) over the past couple of months spoiled me.  Normally by now, I would be used to it.

I think I have remedied the wet feet situation.  As an homage to Red Green, I resorted to the handyman's secret weapon: duct tape.  I applied a strip to cover the holes in the last and mid-sole and then inserted the insole back on top.  If you want to do this to your shoes, I highly recommend removing the laces.  It makes applying the tape much easier.  My feet were dry, but then again, everything was frozen solid.  A nifty bonus is that my feet were warmer, too.  It could have been the socks, but I think it was the tape covering the ventilation holes.

Day 4
Winter hit Ottawa with a vengeance today.  It was -32C this morning with the wind chill.  When you compare that with 16C on Christmas Eve, that is a 48C swing in temperature.  Where in the world is there variability in weather like this?  I hopped on the scale for the first time in many weeks, and my weight is back to where it was when I started at the beginning of November.  I fought off discouragement because my clothes are fitting differently.  More accurately, they are starting to fit.  I really need to add some core strength training to my routine.

I was completely psyched to head out into the cold for a lunchtime run, until I realized that I forgot to pack pants.  I was checking over everything before heading down to the change room when I made this disappointing discovery.  At -30C (with wind chill), it wasn't a day for me to tough it out in shorts; therefore, I set everything aside and resigned myself to running on the treadmill in the evening.  It was pretty much the same as last night: same 30 minute hill/speed pre-set workout, but a new X-Files episode.  The time really passed quickly and I was able to fall asleep nearly immediately, which is a huge plus.   

Day 3
It was a very busy day and I honesty contemplated taking a day off (i.e. end the streak), but I hopped on the treadmill at 10:00PM for a 30 minute pre-set workout.  I'm really glad that I ran.  I'm actually a little concerned that if I stop for one day, I may start making excuses for myself and become inconsistent.  The run itself, went great.  I have assigned my Adizero Mana's to treadmill duty because it would be like running on skates if I used them outside.

I was able to polish off another episode of the X-Files.   Never be hit by a car while binge watching Netfllix is another nice benefit of using the treadmill.  BTW, I'm looking forward to the new X-Files series that starts later this month.

Day 2
I did the Sarsfield Loop again today just before losing the light, and I was able to finish off another Phedippidations podcast.  If you don't listen to Phedippidations, you should.  It is the best running podcast out there.  The host has been putting his all into these self-produced episodes for over 10 years, and to be blunt, he is really worth listening to. 

With the temperatures remaining consistently below freezing, the roads were clearer and the shoulders were much more solid than yesterday.  That being said I still ended up with wet feet .  (I really need to do something about that.)  The wind from the west was really strong and cold, turning -5C into -12C.  I dressed for the colder number and didn't regret it.  I kept my pace steady, but slowed noticeably when I turned into the wind.

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