Monday brought the most snow we’ve seen yet this winter, and while it was only a mere 2-3 inches, it made for a seductively challenging run. Out on the gravel roads the snow was whipping into my eyes, causing me to run backwards for stretches of time just to give my face a break from the wind. Running into the wind for half of the 2.5hour trek was a good workout in itself, but as the snow clogged my Saucony Peregrines I began to slide around, exhausting my legs by the time I hit the trails towards the end of the route.
My route took me out of Cottage Grove onto snow covered blacktop, then gravel, and eventually hilly trails. I usually hit up the hills towards the beginning of my run, but chose to challenge myself at the end of the trek to see how my legs would handle the change. I brought along my wife’s running hand-held water flask and a granola bar, both of which I consumed right before I hit the hills. They were definitely helpful and although I normally don’t drink water on my runs, I realized how thirsty I was every time I sipped the 10oz. water-flask.
All-in-all it was a good 18 mile (2.5hr) run, but I was definitely exhausted from running, at some points, THROUGH the snow rather than on the snow. As I made my way back near home, I meandered onto a bike path that was clear and realized how much energy I had been using to trek through the snow. Snow running is a good way to get your legs in shape, and it probably helps strengthen your muscles in your feet and ankles a bit more. Props to the Arrowhead runners (& ALL participants), who I hope at some point in the future I will be joining.
This was a good precursor to the “Untitled” coming up next Sunday Jan. 29th. Most of the folks will be riding bicycle from Rochester out onto gravel roads for 70ish miles, but Sven and I will be running the Perley course out in Spring Valley. As we check out the course and mileage we will update you with some teaser images and horror stories:)