It's Saturday and a very nice, calm 20 degrees outside. Because it's rarely this nice I decided that today I would challenge myself to run outside for the first time this winter.
I headed out in my usual gear (It's usually cold in the garage where I run, so I figured I would be good with what I usually wear.- Cotton yoga pants, a synthetic long sleeve shirt, zip up sweatshirt, and cotton gloves. To this I added a stocking cap) I took off down the road and it was SOOOOO cold. Oh my gosh, the wind was beating against my face and my eyes were watering. I was thinking, "What kind of idiot does this?" I was so tempted to turn around and head back home and hop on my treadmill. The snow was like running on a sandy beach and my feet were slipping quite a bit. I pressed on and after the first quarter mile I turned down a side road that was much better packed down. By changing directions I was sheltered from the wind and immediately warmed up. I started feeling great and just kept running. I was going at an alarmingly slow rate, and yet felt really great about where I was at. I was breathing in the fresh air, enjoying the crisp winter day and just feeling great!!! I ran the entire first mile without stopping for a moment and then continued running the mile in return with an occasional 30 sec rest. I could not believe the challenge on my lungs and muscles in my legs that I don't usually use. The most amazing part was that when I reached my front steps I felt alive and refreshed and OH SO PROUD!!! I know it's not a huge accomplishment, but I was starting to feel like I wasn't really getting anywhere with my running, and after today I know that eventually I really will be a good runner!!!
All this to say that while running in Alaska is challenging, it is not impossible!
MANTRA: Love and accept yourself in the present moment.