Outside Running? Yeah, Not So Much...

>> Saturday, March 02, 2019

In the middle of January, I posted about having a lot of stroller runs. That post included these 3 pictures:

Three different runs. Yes really. (From this blog post.)

From the start of the year until our Mexico trip, 66% of my runs were with the stroller. Then we got back from Mexico and had the snowiest February on record. And the 4th snowiest month in MN ever on record:

From a local meteorologist's Facebook page.

More depressing February stats. There were 10 days in February where it DIDN'T snow.

See #8 on that "snowiest months" list? I was blogging about that back in December of 2010. Here's a post about running during the "snow-pocalypse" where we got 17+ inches in a day, and here's a post with a bit of the aftermath. Here are some comparisons between now and then:

Backyard "hill" (turned into a fort) from 2 weeks ago.

Same view complaining about ALL the snow 8 years ago (seen in this post).

And 1 final comparison:

Same backyard hill from the driveway this morning. (Yes, I have to now throw snow that high.)

Similar view from 8 years ago (seen in this post).

Well, since I ran 4 times in Mexico 5 weeks ago, I've only been outside here in MN for a run THREE TIMES. (And it's not because it's "cold" - it's that when I run "tight" while trying not to fall down not he ice/snow, I end up screwing up my knee.) Two of those runs were easy weekend runs, and the third outdoor run was 2 days ago, when I tried a quick tempo run outside.

I'm pretty sure I'll be doing "O'Gara's Run 8K" in a week (the first race in the USATF MN series), so I wanted to make sure I still remembered how to run hard outside. The trails were packed with snow, so there was slippage with each push-off. But it was quite "run-able." I knew I was working harder than the perfectly flat, perfect push-offs, 0 wind resistance runs on the treadmill lately, and it showed in my times. I ran 6 miles, with the middle 3 HARD:

Half-mile splits: 3:16, 3:15, 3:16, 3:13, 3:11, 3:04 = 19:18.53 (6:26 pace)

Compare that to my last treadmill long run from 2 days before: I ran 11.0 miles, with the middle 6.5 starting at 8.8 mph and speeding up 0.1 mph every half mile. So I ended with the last half mile at 10.0 mph (6:00 pace). My average pace over those descending 6.5 miles was faster than my 3 miles outside 2 days ago:

Half-mile treadmill splits, speeding up 0.1 mph every half mile (from 8.8 mph to 10.0 mph):

3:23, 3:22, 3:19, 3:17, 3:14, 3:13, 3:10, 3:09, 3:07, 3:05, 3:03, 3:00, 3:00 = 41:32 (6:23 pace)

We got 5 more inches of snow yesterday, but now it's just supposed to be cold for a few days. Hopefully the roads can clear off a bit for the race in a week!


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