Last year's winter was a true test of heart with such bitter cold, and the year before that packed a glorious amount of snow. I kind of knew that this winter hadn't yet shown its true capabilities, so I wasn't particularly shocked when when I looked at the weather for Saturday and saw that there was an onslaught of wet snow predicted to start around 6am, just in time to mess up the sidewalks for our Riverside Run. I don't mind running in the snow so much, but it's exhausting over long distances to loose so much traction on each step, and the treads on my running shoes are currently so worn down that the outer edge is almost completely gone. My work schedule doesn't include Fridays, so I decided that it was probably in my best interests to do my longer run on my own on Friday afternoon, despite the fact that I felt too lazy to even make myself food. I considered looping downtown and back until Daniel somewhat jokingly mentioned running out to Brandeis. So I asked when he was off work (around 4:00), mapped out my route, and left the house around 2:45 to make my way west.
The direct route to Brandeis from my house is actually only about 8
miles, so I extended the distance by first going through Harvard Square.
I elected to do the run in my more lightweight Mizuno WaveInspires that
I bought last year and have only used intermittently since then. They
used to make my tendonitis flare up with their slightly less supportive
structure, but thankfully I've been PTT-free this season and decided to
risk it. I couldn't bear to put on my chewed up Brooks again. They look
like someone took a belt sander to them. I did manage to find a replacement pair of the
obsolete GTS-13 model online in my size, but they were yet to arrive in
The route out to Brandeis was actually very unsightly. I recognized the first part of the way from when I joined my dad for one of the final legs of his walk up to Boston, a stretch of roads from McLean Hospital to the CambridgeSide Galleria mall right by the downtown. When Nathaniel had been staying at McLean to try out a therapy program, he elected to leave and subsequently ran the only direction that he was familiar with--8 miles to the Galleria, where they had gone once as a group. I remember him saying to me how they made him walk around the mall without touching his face or looking in a mirror first, and such an easy-seeming process was made torturous by his BDD. Now I was doing part of that path in reverse, and as hard as I tried, I couldn't even remotely imagine what he may have been thinking about as he ran towards Boston. I was, however, impressed that Nathaniel found his way with basically zero knowledge of the surrounding area, whereas I kept having to fumble around with the directions I'd scribbled onto a piece of paper to remember which roads to turn on.
Ten miles two weeks ago seemed easy, but as it so often goes with running, it was less of a good day. The sun was beginning to set when I arrived in Waltham, and I cut through the Waltham Common before arriving at the university soon after. My ankles and right hamstring were slightly sore from the lighter shoes, but no major damage sustained. Which is a huge leap from last year, when I was KT taping my right ankle for every run.
Anyways, it is now Monday and we've had some snow and now everyone is going gaga crazy over the imminent blizzard that is creeping up the coast. CFS called tomorrow off in advance, so us part-time hourly employees can now stay at home to watch the falling snow and marvel at the inverse relationship between the amount of accumulation and the size of our next paycheck. I did get home just as the wind was beginning to pick up and the gentle snow that began a few hours ago had a bit more sting to it. With the knowledge that tomorrow's hill run is (obviously) canceled, I convinced Daniel to throw on the running clothes and do a quick turn around Somerville and Arlington in the falling darkness before we're holed in for multiple days. I have to say, despite the crazy looks we got from the frantic commuters, I had a very enjoyable time greeting this new weather system head on. We took the unlit bike path on the far side of the Alewife Brook on our way back, and running through the tree-lined path with the white snow lighting our way, I kind of felt like Paul Revere charging through the darkness. Or really more like his horse, honestly. The blizzard is coming, the blizzard is coming!