Goodbye, Winter.

Maybe it’s the run I just came on before I started to write this post, but I’m a little excited.

Last week, I stared winter in the eye and told him to bugger off.

This week, he did.

He skulked off, but not before a final tantrum.

The weather on Saturday was a real mixed bag. It was warm with a high wind. The day’s warmth caused a significant melt. That night, the temperature dropped rather suddenly. It was still mild by winter standards, but enough to turn the mist into flurries. The melt froze overnight and made for a truly treacherous Sunday Run.

It was a chilly -11, but that wasn’t so bad after we got our heart rates up. I doubt we had more than a few dozen feet of bare sidewalk the entire run, though. Those fleeting feet of bare terrain were … on the hills. That’s right, the dreaded hills. Starting at 6.15K, we actually had two hills in the same 10 minute interval. The hills were a nice preview of things to come for my pace group, but the ice-covered terrain made for a slow run overall.

You think you won that round, Winter? You may have slowed me, but I made it to the end with my pace group.

Really. I’ve outlasted you every season for 34 years. Most people would have given up trying to break me after a couple of months. Remember, I’m the descendant of steelworkers, coalminers, and carpenters. My stubbornness is in the genes.

Tuesday night was still cold, but only -5 degrees which meant I could lighten up on the layers. We had a great run across the Alexandra Bridge to Gatineau and back to Ottawa across the Portage Bridge. Unlike the last time we ran in Gatineau, there were no intersections with 5 minute waits between walk lights.

By the way, whoever programs those lights for the City of Gatineau: go fuck yourself. That is all.

It was the first time I ran a 5K at a 2h tempo pace. It was rather illustrative because I’ve been thinking about running a continuous pace for the St. Patrick’s Day 5K instead of the usual 10 and 1 intervals. I think cutting out the walk breaks and going with a continuous race pace will get me to break the 27 minute mark. I don’t know if a finish in the 25 minute range is in the cards, but I’m giving it a try.

Wednesday, Winter packed his bags and left town. It was 10 degrees above zero. Hallelujah! It was my first run in shorts. It was almost a shame that for such nice weather we had such a short run. That’s okay. It’s supposed to be 11 on Sunday when we do a 10K LSD.

I can’t f*****g wait. Sure the forecast for today and Saturday is a little on the chilly side, but the long term forecast is warm, warm, warm.

I’ve had some fun workouts at Greco LeanandFit on the days I’m not running this week. On Tuesday’s Extreme Lean workout, they had an exercise which now qualifies as my least favourite: the upside down military press. You start with your feet firmly planted against the wall and do a push up. While holding in the up position, you walk your feet up the wall. Once you’re up, you do another push up, which in that position is a glorified upside down military shoulder press.

My problem was my shoes. I use my old runners as my gym shoes. Any grip from the treads are mere memories. In fact, I’ve been using my original running shoes, my Brooks. My most recent old shoes, New Balance, when I switched to Mizunos at the beginning of my half-marathon training were even more worn out than my previous pair. They didn’t even have the traction to allow me to complete a regular push-up, more or less what the trainers at Greco had cooked up.

It was finally time to invest in a proper pair of trainers. After a year of getting by with older shoes, I needed some new ones for the gym. Since the Running Room doesn’t carry cross trainers, I shopped around a bit. I found a sale on at Sports Experts and picked up some Nikes for $90 after taxes.

I have to say, I made the salesmen, a shaggy looking fellow, earn his commission on that one. When he asked how I felt, I replied, ” Not sure. Do you have some empty wall space I can test these on?”

Stunned look follows.

“How can I decide which shoe to buy if I can’t do an upside military press?”

Stunned look continues.

“Buddy, I’m kidding. The shoes are fine.”

I repeated the joke to the cashier, who at least had the sense of humour to laugh at the absurdity of my question.

When I returned to Greco on Thursday, I promptly put the Nikes through a proper test by attempting to perform an upside down military press.

I performed five.

Test passed.



One response

  1. Please god I hope my trainer does not learn of the upside down military shoulder press.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: