Friday, April 11, 2008


I am an outside runner. It does not matter what the weather – I run outside. I cannot say exactly why I am so stubborn about it, but I have never found a day when I would not run outside.

We actually have a treadmill that my wife and kids use. It is in our bedroom which means that if I used it when I run in the early morning; I would wake the whole family up. But it does not matter if we kept it in the basement – I still would not use it.

Since I run in the early morning, it is never too hot and the colder it is the more layers I wear. It is kind of fun to run when it is super-cold – like below 10F. The icicles start to form on the eyelids and frost covers your hat. It makes for a pretty cool picture when you are done.

Recently I ran in a blizzard – 25F, snow and wind. I had a 15 mile run scheduled so I just kept doing a 2 mile loop around my neighborhood. The road would cover over with snow, the snow plow would come by and clear the road. It would get snow covered again, the plow would come, and I repeated the cycle for 8 loops; sometimes on clear roads, sometimes on snow covered roads. I got some really odd looks from my neighbors.

The one type of weather I hate is rain. Now I am sure that there are people that like running in the rain. My daughter that runs cross country and track told me she likes to run in the rain. I will run in the rain, but I don’t like it – I endure it. I dislike everything about it, the wet shoes, and the clinging clothes. If there is one type of weather that makes me think twice about running outside it is rain.

But I do it. I just can’t run without the feeling of pushing against the ground and the sensation of propelling my body through space. The weather is just another element, another obstacle, like a hill, to be overcome. Outside I am focused, centered and things become clear as my progress is marked by landmarks and not a digital counter on the treadmill display.

Running inside to me just feels like cheating, but next time it is pouring rain as I step out the door, I may wish that treadmill was in the basement.

No comments: