My front porch + snowy, snowy day = as far as I've gotten in my New Asics Gel-Kayanos.

The good parts about having our first snow day today:

  • Since it’s fallen on Monday, we get a long weekend, and even better the school district made the call to cancel last night. You can’t beat that feeling of knowing you don’t have to get up early and shuttle kids to school.
  • My ultra-flexible boss at my part-time job allows me to work from home on days my kids don’t have school.
  • Kids are old enough now to understand mommy has to work some, but then we all can head outside to play in the snow followed by hot chocolate by the fire.

The not-so-great part about having our first snow day today:

  • It’s been three whole days since I’ve ran. And today is not looking so good to fit in a trek around the neighborhood, thanks to a hard-working husband whose job includes snow-plowing. Not to mention the weather is pretty brutal – 12 degrees out there (“feels like -6” my Weather Channel app tells me) with winds at 21 mph. Then there’s the snow blanketing the roads all around my house following the blizzard this weekend that dumped on us more than a foot of snow. I suspect it’ll be awhile before the plows come through to clear the snowy drifts.

I’d deliberately taken two days off from running after two back-to-back 5 milers earlier in the week. While the distances felt great at the time, I noticed a slight twinge in my left Achilles not long after the second run. I have been slowly upping my mileage in an effort to maintain momentum throughout the crazy-busy holiday season and also because I’ve made the decision to run the Bayshore Marathon this spring. I also figured my body was telling me to get those new shoes already.

But I didn’t anticipate taking off more than two days. You know how it goes, though. Life gets in the way. Work, family, snow day.

So I’ve tried to look at this as a good thing, a time to focus on and savor other things that need my attention, like Christmas shopping with Emma, enjoying a night out with friends to celebrate Joe’s birthday this weekend, watching a movie with my family, shoveling the porch and walkway (had to get some form of exercise…) The next run will be there soon enough. If anything, this mini-break reminds me how grateful I am when I am able to get out there and run to my heart’s content. So I say, tell yourself this, that you “get” to go for a run instead of you “have to.” Amazing how that shift in thinking can be so motivating.

Speaking of motivation, I’ve been asked by a few runner friends lately how I get motivated to run outside during winter. Here’s what’s helping me:

  • Buying a few new pieces of running clothing. I was pleasantly surprised to find a couple of great hoodies at Target last week. Gotta love the relatively cheaper prices. I’m still on the hunt for some new running pants/tights, and I’d like to find a new hat.
  • Downloading the Nike+GPS app ($1.99). This is just too cool. I’d been thinking of getting a Garmin, but was having a tough time swallowing the several hundred dollar price tag. Then I found this app, which provides average pace, distance, route info, calories burned. After setting your distance, for example, you’re alerted throughout the run to how you’re doing. You’re also told when you’re close to hitting your goal. I like that it also holds a history of your runs and routes (including specific details about your pacing at each part of your run) and you can synch all of this info with the Nike+ site (I’ve yet to explore this side of it much, but my understanding is that you can share your info with fellow runners, encourage each other, get greater details on your progress).
View from my front porch ~ Dec. 13, 2010

I’ve got some exciting news to share about my running plans for 2011, hope to post about it soon … I  think it’ll be a good birthday post. The big 3-6 is this Friday!

Happy winter running, everyone!

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