Lakefront Hell, winter runs


Last week I saw an online post from fellow former athlete K. She mentioned she had signed up for the Chicago Endurance Sports Spring ½ marathon training. I couldn’t believe it. How could she possibly sign up for something without me. Where is the love? Where is the camaraderie? I immediately thought, “there is no flipping way I am signing up for that.” Three minutes later I was on the phone with K trying to figure out how much I needed to pay and when it was starting. So I go from a couch potato who hasn’t worked out in months one minute, to a person in training for a ½ marathon the next minute. K mentioned that the training would start on Saturday morning, with a 3 mile run on the lakefront. Reminder folks. It is February.

Showed up Saturday, the windiest day of the year to run on the lakefront. K informs me that the run is 4 miles, not 3. GREAT. The entire thing was pretty much a big flipping joke as I could barely walk into the wind let alone run. But who am I kidding, I really can’t run in the sun with no wind. This is a run/walk program. 3 minutes run to 2 minutes walk. I swear though, that pacer wasn’t checking her Timex enough because I KNOW she had us run for more than 3 minutes at a time. Felt lucky I didn’t slip and fall on my ass, but in the end I still felt like I had.

But wait, there is more to the training. From that Saturday hellish activity I ran again Monday and Wednesday and swam Tuesday and Thursday. My beluga moves in the pool would have impressed Phelps.

Saturday’s 5 mile run nearly killed me.  I seemed to struggle with too many layers, tightening lungs from the cold air, and tired legs all around.  Curious wonders and questions about why our noses run so much in the cold were topics of the day.  But, we did it.  On to another week.  Next Saturday is suppposed to be 6 miles.  Hmmm.  We’ll see.

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