Sunday, January 27, 2008

Week of January 21 to 27

Wednesday, 4.3 miles, 9.3 pace (steady run), -23 (wind chill -30), Golf Course Square

 It was a pleasant run, fast and chilly with good footing.  Deborah, Lori, Vivian, David, and Sandra running this evening.  It’s interesting how our bodies have become acclimatized to the cold conditions.  A minus 30-degree wind chill doesn’t seem so bad anymore especially compared to minus 41!  Many runners actually prefer running in minus 30 degree conditions to +30.  One can dress accordingly for –30 or even colder.  The plus 30 with humidex is the real killer.  The group was a little splintered this evening… some going fast, some medium, some slow.  I fell back to accompany a tired runner  We finished in three separate groups.

 Thursday, January 24, (0 miles)

I missed the clinic and run due to a heavy workload at school.  I’m preparing a full day workshop for Friday, February 1 and it’s starting to take over my life.  (For the teachers reading this blog the workshop is on Assessment).  Regrettably I will need to miss next Thursday’s clinic as well.  I called the Running Room and asked Tom to arrange for another group leader.  Sorry folks!  I hear it was a very successful 5-mile jaunt. 
 Friday, January 25, 7.6 miles, 10:00 pace (steady run) -15 (-19 wind chill) Play list: Eleni Mandell
Feeling a little guilty for not attending last night’s clinic I bussed it to work and ran home.  The bus ride is just under an hour and provided some quiet time for planning the aforementioned workshop.  I quite enjoyed the ride; even the 10-minute transfer wait on Graham by the new Hydro Building was all right. The bus was practically empty so there was plenty of room to spread out and, thankfully, the bus driver didn’t yell out every stop, as the metro-brass would have them.
This is the first time I have run home from work.  I’ve cycled the route hundreds of times, but I’ve never had the gumption to actually run the route.  The only downer was Regent Avenue, which is crazy with traffic.  Once in St. Boniface the traffic disappears and the scenery become pleasing.  After a quick stop at the Forks for a sip of water and a visit to the loo, I was on my way for the last leg.  It was an entirely satisfying run.  Here’s the thing: it’s a 30-minute car ride through some nasty traffic.  Conversely, it was an 80-minute run through some of the finest trails in the city.  I arrived home on a FRIDAY feeling alive and satisfied. Usually I’m dog tired and stressed after navigating through one traffic snag after another.  The way I see it, by running home I’m getting an 80-minute workout for a 50-minute time commitment and, as a bonus, I feel good and I didn’t contribute to the carbon stream for one day. 
Saturday, January 26, 7.0 miles, 10:10 pace (steady run) –16 (-25 wind chill), River Trail: Aubrey Street access/ under the Esplanade Riel/ return. Play list: Kaki King
 It was truly a run to savor, sun shining, blue, skies, the river trail alive with skaters, walkers, runners, hockey players, it was just a good day to be alive, plain and simple.  There’s something magical about the river trail.  Everyone seems happier, more engaged, and more aware of their surroundings than street level.  Everyone, even those surely teens, makes eye contact, and smiles.
I extend kudos to Paul Jordan the “dweeb in the snow-suit” (Ottawa Citizen) for having the vision to create this jewel of a trail.  At  8.54 kilometers it’s the longest skate trail in the world.  By the way, if you haven’t stood under the Esplanade Riel and looked up, you are missing a beautiful sight.
 Sunday, January 27, 11.16 miles, 10:14 pace (with walks) –13 (-21 wind chill). Grace General Hospital, return via Lodge Lori, Murray, Bev, Gwen, Sandra, Ryan, Onkar, Deb, Vivian
Our mileage is creeping up as race day approaches.  I broke the back of 30 miles this week! Next week is another 11 miler, than a 12.5 miler, and than, my favourite part of training… the taper week.  Tom has kindly arranged for a breakfast at Fort Whyte Alive following the 12.5 mile run on February 10.  Thanks Tom, this is a nice touch and is much appreciated.
 It’s nice to have the gentler climes return.  We started the run at –13 and ended at –8 so clearly we’re in for a -short- warming trend.  For those of you reading this blog in Texas, Mexico, or Hawaii, (not jealous) we’re bracing ourselves for a blizzard scheduled to blow in late Monday.  Cross your fingers for a snow day… the last snow day for teachers was April 1997, the year of the flood.
 It was good to have Murray join us today.  He’s a fine runner and, as someone said, a dignified person.  Lori would do well to see a massage therapist to address her injury while it’s in its infancy… don’t put it off too much longer Lori or it could slow you down.  Ryan was back and gave us an update on the baby in waiting… it’s a girl!  Bev has a crazy week coming up and Onkar reinforced just how much he dislikes cold weather running.  It was a good day.
Our thoughts go out to Debra B. who mourns the passing of her father.  Losing a loved one is a tough road, but a road that all of us face, a road that brings family and friend closer.  Deb, your father is a huge part of who you are and who you will become.  Run the Hypo for him and make him more proud of you than he is now.  Thank you Scott for discreetly sharing the news and arranging the card for us to express our concern. You’re a good person.
Remember, it’s a good day to be alive.
Cheers to you all,
Week Total Distance =  30.1 miles

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