Monday, January 6, 2014

Winter Running

People ask me why I run outside in the winter.  Everyone who knows me, knows I hate the cold.  CAN NOT STAND IT.  Hate setting foot outside if it is much below 50 degrees.  (And I much prefer 70 or 80).  Yet, I run outside year round, no matter the weather.  (As long as it isn't too icy, because I don't want to fall and break every bone in my body.)

I ran a few days ago and it was 16 degrees out.  Sure, my fingers, ears, and toes were a little bit cold.  But the rest of me was pretty toasty.  And then there was today.  10 degrees, blowing snow, "feels like" -10.  And I ran anyway.  Fingers were a little more cold.  Ears were fine 'cause I wore a warmer hat.  My nose was pretty cold.  My toes were pretty cold.  My legs were a little cold, even though I wore long pants which I very, very very rarely do.  ( I almost always wear yoga capris) But I ran.  And, I ran FAST.  I had to.  I wanted to get home before I got frostbite on my nose.  I ran 3 miles at 6:46 pace.

So, why do I run in the cold when I hate cold so much?  It just isn't as bad when I'm running.  I hate it when my fingers freeze, but as long as I keep them almost warm, I'm fine.  The cold doesn't bother me at all.  I was trying to figure out why the other day, since people keep asking me.  And I realized it's because I don't shiver when I'm running.  When I'm in a cold environment doing anything other than running, I feel the cold all the way to my core.  "Bone-chilling" cold.  I shiver uncontrollably.  I feel like I will never ever be warm again.  It's awful.  But when I am running, I don't feel that way.  My core stays toasty warm.  Sure, my fingers might be freezing, and that is torture.  But it is nothing compared to the torture of having my entire body feel that way.  And that is why I can run in cold weather even though I can't tolerate being the least bit cold for anything else.

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