Saturday, January 9, 2010

Frozen Training

Brrrr! I know I live in Minnesota and all, but come on! It has been crazy cold here. Morning temps have been well below zero without even factoring in the wind chill. So far, I've been able to avoid the dreaded treadmill. When it's below zero, I've headed to the local recreation dome. On Thursday, it was a balmy zero with no wind, so friend and I headed down to the lakes. We ran 7 miles and every ten minutes observed that it really wasn't so bad out. Sad when zero seems like a break in the weather.

There is no wimping out because of the weather as I only have two more weeks to get ready for the Securian Frozen Half Marathon. The tag line for this race is, "The few, the proud, the frozen." I've never done this race before, but in a funny way it has special meaning for me. I had never raced further than a 5K when I decided to train for the Frozen Half in 2006. Being the over-planner that I am, I checked the website in August 2005, wrote the date on my calendar and mapped out a 16 week training plan. With about 6 weeks to go until race day, I went back to the web page to get the registration information. The race was now listed for a different date, the day before I had it on my calendar. The information I looked at originally was from the previous year. I had checked so early that they hadn't updated it for the next year yet.

I had comitted to volunteer for a school activity on the real race day and it was a big event. With weeks of planning and training already in the bank, I decided I would run my own virtual race the following day. When I got up the next morning, it was well below zero and it was windy. I didn't have any experience running in temperatures like that. What to do? I ran my race on my treadmill. Here I am at the finish:


Mike made me my own race number and you can see where he wrote my finish time on my bib. I had never run that far before. Going the distance was very difficult for me and I had a lot of knee pain the entire time. I had wanted to finish in 2:30 and I beat it by 56 seconds, so I was glad and relieved to have it over with. I was pretty proud of myself and I didn't want to turn the treadmill off and erase the display.

It took me over a year to run my first official half marathon. Now I've run more than 13 miles many times. Although 13 miles doesn't scare me like it did just 4 years ago, it isn't something that I take lightly. I'm going to have to be creative to get in some miles between now and the race. Mike and I are going to squeeze in a couple days of skiing next weekend. I'm planning on getting in a 10 mile run tomorrow and then hopefully at least two more runs before we leave. I never have any luck running at altitude, so skiing and snowshoeing will have to suffice until we get back. I'll keep my fingers crossed that the warm up promised by the weather service lasts until race day. I really don't need to be frozen to be proud.

17 comments:

Jean said...

This morning actually wasn't too bad outside. There was no wind, so that was a total blessing! (Did I just suggest that -15 below zero was not so bad?!? I've been living here too long!).

Great story. How cool of Mike to make you a number and everything! All the best to you as prepare for the Securian Frozen Half!

Trishie said...

You ran 13.1 mi on the tmill?? wowzers, impressive !

Trishie said...

oh, DUH, nevermind, I can't read ! good luck with your training!!

Julie said...

Hi Beth,
Oh my God, you are a rock star!!! You did so good...cheers to you! Running a half marathon scares the crap out of me...my first is on Feb. 14th. The most I have run is ten miles so I am a little worried. Good job for your awesome performance on your treadmill!!!

Londell said...

Cool... We all look at the wrong dates. Once I read a marathon star an hour later and got to the start 20 minutes after it started... Good luck in that half. It is a nice race although there are parts of the course the wind can be pure hell...

Sunshine said...

Last year we pre-registered for the 5K in St. Paul, picked up our cups, watched the half marathon runners take off, went home to keep warm.
Wishing you a bit warmer weather and a fun race.

AZ said...

Your first half was on a treadmill? How tough is that? Way to go. Compared to that the Securian will be a piece of cake. I'm half thinking about doing it too.

Porkchopwi said...

Apparenlty the "Frozen" could have applied to the Disney events this year too.

We're real gald we opted not to go this year. Who wants to drop a few thousand bucks for 30-degree weather?

Nice job training in this blech!

amybee said...

I say: Be LOUD be PROUD you did 13.1 on the treadmill!

(I HATE the cold too)

BrianFlash said...

Best race number ever! Putting in that much time consecutively on the treadmill is an amazing accomplishment.

Luckily, my treadmill only goes to 9.99 miles. So I'll never have to run any further then that indoors.

Love to Run said...

Way to go keeping up on the running in the cold. Amazing how the cold doesn't seem so bad after we experience much colder.

I experienced the same thing as you with the longer runs not seeming so long anymore. About 6 years ago, an 8 miler was a loooooong run. Now I don't even consider it a long run until 18 miles.

Good Luck at the Frozen half!

mini said...

good

Thomas Bussiere said...

And I was complaining about running in 19 deg temps the other day. I can see why the dreadmill is a survival thing in Minn. 60 min on the machine and I'm soooooo ready to get off it.
Good job with the training.

Velma said...

Cool story! Have fun on the trip and happy training for the half - I will keep my fingers crossed for good weather.

Heather said...

A half on the treadmill is impressive! I ran the frozen half marathon as my first half in 2006. I was going to do it last year, but it was shortened because of the cold!

Meg said...

Nice job on your run! What kind of knee pain did you run through? You are tough and you don't need the cold to prove that! Love your bib, by the way. That was sweet!

Tim F. said...

I also have to say . . . impressive to run a half on a treadmill. That is great! I think the longest I went on a treadmill might be 6 miles.