Yeah. I ran in that.

So Mid-Atlantic friends…how’d you do this weekend?

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If Jonas were a cartoon, I imagine he would look like this.

It was unreal over here. Just before it started we were forecasted for 2 feet and ended up with about 30″ at my house. Looking outside at my little red car as it became more and more overwhelmed by snow was a little depressing. I tried to clean it off several times on Saturday and as I’m sure you can imagine that was mostly pointless.

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You can see my beer getting buried in the front left of this picture.

The problem with this much snow and living in an apartment is that there’s not really anywhere to pile it up without being a real jerk and further blocking in a neighbor’s car.

In addition to a bunch of fruitless shoveling I did everything I said I was going to do in my post on Friday; although sledding was impossible after Friday night because we just sank into the snow.  Yes, I even ran during the blizzard.

Things started off well enough. It was a bit blustery when I turned out of my parking lot, but by the time I got to the top of the hill, I was really pumped up and singing to myself. This was fun!

I only intended to do a mile and then see how I felt after that. My watch beeped and things were going great; I was sailing down the other side of the hill in the middle of the street because obviously there weren’t any cars out on the road. Our government was very specific about everyone staying in their houses. #crazyrunners

Another half mile in and things began to get a little troublesome. The wind was REALLY bad at the base of the hill and snow was blowing directly into my face with a force that was more than little bit painful. I had to stop and turn my back to it a couple times. I started to wonder if this had been such a good idea.

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I posted this in jest the other day, but it felt exactly like this.

Getting lost and disoriented had seemed like such a far-fetched concept and although I knew where I was at that moment, I could now see why people get lost in blizzards. I wished I had stayed closer to my house.

BUT. I had to get home somehow so I kept going. I ran past a lady who was trying to shovel her front walk and she yelled out, “NOW THAT’S DEDICATION!” Or insanity. Whatever.

My watch beeped mile 2, I saved my run and walk-stumbled the rest of the way back to my house.

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I think I got my crazy points for the day and also achieved frozen eyelashes (and frozen rest of my face) for the first time ever!IMG_6033

Yesterday my gym was closed and it was much nicer outside – sunshine and 20 MPH wind gusts as opposed to 60 – so I went for another, longer run to check out how the roads had been treated so far.

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I had on all the pairs of socks.

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Not as bad as I thought (although there is supposed to be a street in that photo at the bottom right). I managed to find 5 miles of road that had been plowed enough for me to run in the middle of. I’m sure we won’t have sidewalks until June.

For the rest of the day I shoveled and managed to get my car out. Today I’m at work and I can barely lift my arms. I guess I can skip BodyPump this week.

Were you affected by Jonas this weekend? How did it go? Did you shovel a lot? Are you still trapped in your house? Did you get a chance to go for a run in it? 

I hope everyone had a safe, happy, warm weekend!

xo,

Salt

 

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I wasn’t going to do 16 in 2016…

…but the way my race calendar is shaping up, it looks like I very well might exceed that number. Let’s just start emptying out my bank account now, shall we?

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This is about as much as I will ever be able to make it rain.

I’ve been carefully planning out my calendar for the year; one that will include zero full marathons so I’m pretty excited at the prospect of doing a bunch of shorter races again and hopefully not injuring myself in the process. I haven’t committed 100% to anything yet – and by that I mean I have spent exactly zero dollars so far – but I think I have it all figured out by this point. All there is left to do is get a second job or win the lottery to fund all of it because unfortunately as you might be able to tell by the fact that I’m posting on my blog right now, I did not win the Powerball last week.

Salt’s 2016 Completed-ish Race Calendar

January

Oh hell no. It’s -12 degrees outside and we could possibly get 2 feet of snow this weekend. Unless there’s a treadmill race this month, I’m not doing a damn thing.

February

At some point between the 5 – 8: Nuun Year Dash. It’s virtual. I’m on Team Nuun so I felt inspired to participate. I’m going to do the 10K. (YAY TEAM NUUN!!)

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March

13: Kelly St. Patrick’s Day Shamrock 5K. The first race in Charm City Run’s B3 series that I will be participating in again this year. This year I also know where to stand at the start so that I don’t trip over a thousand people walking during the first quarter mile.

April

Okay now let’s get down to business.

10: White Hall 15K. I’m so glad BRRC moved this one to April this year. The past two years I ran it, it was scheduled in March and had to be rescheduled both times due to bad weather. This will be my first race in the Grand Prix series for this year.

16: Sole of the City 10K. Second race in the B3 series. I love this race so hard and was sad to miss out on it last year.

30: Island to Island Half Marathon. Ocean City, Maryland. This is my goal race for spring. I had a hard time deciding between this and the Frederick Half the following weekend, but in the end went with this one. I would have chosen Frederick if I was going to go for the King Crab this year, but I’m not. So I didn’t.

May

15: Women’s Distance Festival 5K. Small. Local. Put on by my run club and all women as the name would suggest.

June

4: Baltimore 10 Miler. I’ve been wanting to run this race for forever, horror stories of hills be damned.

19: I’ve got two options. I’ll either be doing BRRC’s GPS 5K or there’s a small possibility that I might be signing up for my first sprint duathlon, either by myself or if I can convince another person who just so happens to be way stronger on a bike than I am.

29: GPS Meet of Miles. It’s literally a mile race. It seems like the easiest way to get points for the Grand Prix Series and yet I missed out on it the past two years due to injury. Let’s hope that’s not the case again.

July

It’s going to be hotter than hell, so probably nothing this month.

August

21: GPS Too Hot to Trot 10K. This will be year #3 for me. It’s a small 10K on the trail near my house. The past two years it has been not too hot to trot at all and instead was magically in the low 50’s in August.

September

3: Charles Street 12. B3 race #3 and one of my favorite races ever. My goal this year is to not completely brick at mile 10 like I have the past two years.

16-17: Ragnar DC! My first Ragnar!! I’m so freaking excited for this. My team is shaping up to be completely awesome.

October

2: GPS Half Marathon. Another one on the trail. This will either be my 4th or 5th GPS race and it’s where I have my current half PR.

15: Baltimore Running Festival. Instead of doing the half this year, I’d really like to form a relay team. Now to find 3 poor, unsuspecting people to sign up with me…

30: GPS Cross Country 5 Miler. I don’t know exactly why I want to do this one again because I generally hate cross country, but this race was pretty fun this past November even though it was gross and rainy all the way through.

November

Date TBD: Zoo Zoom 8K. I couldn’t do this one last year because it was too close to the NCR Marathon. It always seems to be freezing cold, but the past two times I’ve done it it was one of my favorites.

Date TBD: Restoration Run 5K. Small, fun local race that benefits trout restoration. And don’t we all need a little more of that in our lives?

December

Date TBD: Celtic Solstice 5 Miler. I think I might be one of the only runners in Baltimore who hasn’t done this one yet. I’m jealous of the cool jackets people get every year so I think it’s time I signed up.

In case you are more terrible at math than I am, that adds up to 18 races and it also doesn’t include the random 5K that is sure to pop up somewhere on the calendar. You all know how I love signing up for stuff last minute.

Thank goodness BRRC races are $2 apiece for members or I’d have to declare bankruptcy.

How is your calendar shaping up for 2016? Are you going to be at any of the same races as me?? Who wants to be on my relay team!?

I hope everyone is having a stellar week so far!

xo,

Salt

(Post #4 in the past two weeks! I’m on a roll!)

 

 

 

Running in place doesn’t have to be mind numbing: Tips to make the treadmill a little more fun.

The other day I mentioned my running vacation and how that basically equated to still running all the miles, but doing so inside where I would have an easy out if I wanted to stop. I have always viewed the treadmill as a friend rather than a foe and actually enjoy it whereas it seems most of the general running population prefers to reserve the “dreadmill” for times of extreme inclement weather and sometimes not even then. For those of you who do reluctantly choose the warm gym over running on a sheet of ice or in the midst of a tornado, I have a few suggestions of things to do while on the treadmill that might make the whole experience not-so-terrible.

Salt’s Top 5 Tips for a Less boring Treadmill Run 

Run with a friend.

El Niño keeping you and your running buddies inside? Group runs are totally possible on a treadmill. Sara goes to my gym and we’ve had some great conversations while on the treadmill before. I even made friends with an elderly gentleman once who was walking on the machine next to me.

And yes sometimes I do compete with the people running next to me although they probably don’t realize that I’m doing it. This is also a fun way to pass the time.

Musical Fartleks.

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Sorry. Almost 3 years of running and I still giggle at the word fartlek.  

I’m a big fan of the speed interval function. Once a week I will do a few miles of repeats and toggle between run and jog every 400, 800, 1200, etc. meters, but sometimes I like to use my music to do fartleks on the treadmill rather than pay attention to distance. For example: I will kick the speed way up and run as hard as I can through the chorus of a song and then dial it back when that part is over. I feel like it makes my workouts fly by!

And speaking of intervals…manual hills.

I am also a big fan of the hill function and if I’m just doing a regular treadmill run, this is the setting I use most often. (For those of you not familiar with this, it will give you an elevation change every minute.)  However, sometimes I like to use manual mode, but constantly adjust my hills throughout the run rather than let the treadmill change it for me. It keeps me a little more awake and involved in the run rather than just zoning out.

Closed captioning.

So this one might be a little weird. My gym has a bunch of TVs mounted in front of all the cardio equipment and sometimes I’ll plug my headphones in and watch something. Most of the time I’m listening to music though and when I get in a particularly tough spot such as my treadmill is suddenly taking me up a massive fake hill, I’ll focus on reading the closed captioning until I get through it. Or sometimes I will read it if I’m on there for 9 miles and just feeling a little bored.

People watching.

My gym is full of characters, especially right now with all the new resolutioners that have joined. The treadmills are set up in such a way that I have a very clear view of other cardio equipment and also the entire free weight area. Many a treadmill run has been made more interesting with a little bit of people watching. This might make me sound totally creepy, but seriously…if your workout includes dancing on the treadmill, I’m going to watch you.  Or if you are so jacked that you can’t even put your arms down completely at your sides and you are wearing a three-sizes-too-small Superman shirt that looks it’s about to explode off your body…I am going to look at you. And be very confused by your fashion choices.

How is your relationship with the treadmill? Have you ever tried any of these things to make a treadmill run more interesting? Do you have any other tips to share? 

I hope everyone had a great weekend!

xo,

Salt