Friday, December 18, 2009

running in a cranky mood

I haven't been blogging a lot lately. Not because I've been busy...I have been busy, but that ususally doesn't stop me from shooting out a post.

No, I haven't posted because I've been cranky. I don't know why I've been so cranky. It's just that everything seems to be rubbing me the wrong way lately.

Some bloggers build each and every post around a rant on what is rubbing them the wrong way. I try not to do that. In general, that's not how I am. And I try to just deal with it rather than sharing my crankiness with the world. (Although many times if I go off on a rant about how cranky I am, friends say it's funny, not cranky.) So maybe I'd be doing the world a favor.

Today, I changed my mind. Today, I decided that since turning 40, I've earned the right to be an old curmudgeon and piss and moan about everything. (Also, since turning 40, I've changed to old person vocabulary and regularly use words like curmudgeon)

So here's my reason for crankiness today: long runs on cold days.

Today was my 15 mile training run. I'm doing the Myrtle Beach Marathon in February with my friend from South Carolina. Which means the bulk of my long runs take place in December and January. I understand that this is completely my own fault. Most intelligent people understand that lots of long runs in December and January is a bad idea when you live in Massachusetts. I am not like most intelligent people. (As a matter of fact, I am beginning to think that I'm not as intelligent most people)

When you run long distances in cold, windy weather (high of 26 today, always windy along the Cape Cod Canal) the prep work is an event in and of itself. First, you have to dress in layers. Breathable, wicking layers that also repel wind. Although sports catalogs would have you believe that their products can perform all of these tasks perfectly (keep warm, repel wind, wick away sweat), in reality, the performance is somewhat less than perfect. Then, you have to make the decision about your body parts NOT covered by your performance wear. Hat, or no hat. Gloves, or no gloves. Face mask or not. I've had days where I dropped item after item along the running trail on the run out and then picked them up again on the run back. I like to avoid that if possible.

Today, I opted for no hat, no gloves, no face mask. But I did prep all exposed skin. Once I had my layers, my ipod, my sneakers, and a thin layer of vaseline on my face and hands to protect against wind burn, I was good to go.

There's one thing you can't prepare for no matter how you try. Long runs in the cold tend to be very....mucus-y. There's lots of sniffing and wiping and hocking lugies. And I don't even have a cold!

Plus, this is ALMOST the shortest day of the year. So even though I timed my run for the early afternoon, before the sun sets, the shadows get long very early. Which means the temperature drops in the shade. And the aforementioned mucus, well, it freezes. ( I'm so sexy when I run!)

Finally, to top off the whole cranky ordeal is the fact that in warm weather running, you get more and more flexible and warm as you run. But today, around mile 10 as the shadows got long and the temp dropped, I got really tight in the hamstrings and calves! Ah, crap.

When I arrived home from my supposedly invigorating and healthy activity, J met me at the door.

"Hi! How was your run?"

My response?

"Oh, shut up."

(It's ok. She thinks its hilarious when I'm cranky. Bitch.)


shellyrm said...

Now see, I bet you feel better having vented that all off!

At least warmer anyway.

geekhiker said...

See? Sometimes a good blog vent is healthy. Now move out to California where you can run comfortably all year round!