Becoming a Snowman

Yesterday I had to be in East Town Grand Rapids, 14 miles away, to meet some people.  The sun was bright for the 3rd day in a row, and I couldn’t think of a more enjoyable way to get there than to run. I knew It would be a windy and cold run, so I grabbed my balaclava before heading out the door. The main street, Lake Michigan Drive, about 10 miles long, was clear with generous shoulders on each side for me to run on. I went the first 6 miles at a tempo pace, feeling excellent. After that, the shoulders disappeared and I was forced into going slow on the icy sidewalks. The weather made a drastic change, and a whiteout snowstorm rolled in. (typical Michigan, right?) Eventually, the sidewalks disappeared as well. I hopped on a bus for 2 miles, getting off where the sidewalk continued.

I ran for the next 5 or so miles to East Town. The journey there was in some of the hardest snow and wind I have been in all winter long. With the wind chill at one degree, it was one of the coldest as well. Ice crystals were covering my tights from the snow blowing into me.

I feel like most people would have picked this as a good day to stay inside; however, I felt like a warrior out there in the snow with ice forming on me. I got some wild looks when I walked into the building I was meeting people at. They asked if I rode a bike. I replied with “no, I ran. From home.” It’s a good thing they know me well and it was casual, or else I would have been the odd guy out. But honestly, I think we endurance athletes might always be a little odd.

Today is day four of sunshine, and I have no doubts I will be outside later for a run. My past couple of days have been busy with MS Run the US fundraiser organization, and running club meetings. It is all coming together well though, and I am thankful for the progress I am making on setting up a fundraiser.

See you on the trails-

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