Let me set the stage for this tragic comedy of meteorological error. You may have heard a little bit about Boston's multi-record-breaking winter this year? (Ok good. Documenting the atrocity is part of the healing process.) Right now, as we speak, there are 4-6 feet of snow lining every sidewalk. But "sidewalk" may be too generous of a term -- narrow ice rink? Crunchy packed snow and ice that may at one point have been a sidewalk? Snow bank that has not been cleared once this year? -- thus running, if pursued as an outside activity (which it should be!), must be done almost exclusively on the roads.
The problem isn't so much that it has snowed a lot. It's that it has snowed a TON, in rapid succession, and been so Arctic-ly cold that not one single flake has melted.
So what's a marathon-hopeful to do? IMPROVISE!
First off, I am taking a very flexible approach to days off and scheduling. For example, if it snows a ton and everything is shut down (including the gym), then looks like I'm doing abs in my living room! If it's relatively warm on a Wednesday -- get in a long run!
The next part is that I am getting very friendly with the treadmill. Now, just between us, I do not like the treadmill. One might even say I hate it. But I am fostering a temporary truce with this torturous contraption for the time being. I'm not quite up to doing a truly long run on the 'mill, but I do have some long run-ish workouts that keep me mildly entertained. This gem for example that adds up to 13 miles in total: warm up 3 miles, 4x1 mile with 1 mile recovery, cool down 3 miles.
Third is that when I do run outside, I remember that it's cold and that therefore I will not be running as fast (because science). Knowing this keeps me from getting upset or frustrated or unrealistically feeling out of shape.
Finally, I am SO looking forward to spring! Which at this point I would define as above-freezing temperatures. You guys, it's going to be amazing!