No Place Like Home

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Temperatures here in VT the past two weeks have fluctuated dramatically. We’ve had balmy 55 degree days. The very next, it’s a bone chilling -20, just to keep the balance. And not a lot in between.
On the warm mornings, I get up before dawn and run. Sounds dramatic, eh? Sunrise is at seven, though. Anyway, I run before work. And all is well with my world for the day.
On sub-zero days, I cower under a sea of heavy blankets until coffee is delivered. No run for me. No treadmill, no park trips for Aggie dog. Sad astrid.
So after some especially frigid days, 15 degrees seemed doable for a run. And if I don’t continue to train, no 50k for me this June. More on that big piece of news later.

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Full loaded, um, armored under a one piece-like snowsuit, I set out on some new trails. It was painfully cold on my exposed face, but otherwise comfy. Nothing a little fleece couldn’t fix. I had new trails and ice sheets to keep my brain busy and happy. Sweet relief.

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There’s so much magic in new trails. I would never have been interested in risking life and limb to brave this crappy footing before. But this is new terrain. It links two sections of town forest I didn’t know could be connected without crossing boring roads. So, over ice I go. Happily. My Hokas work really well with Yak Traks on ice.

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More ice for your enjoyment.

This past weekend, my husband’s family convened in Minneapolis for a winter wedding. I’d been hoping to blog from there, complete with Midwestern trail photos. NFW. For the four days we were there, it never got above -1. Again, NFW. I squeezed out two 5ks on the treadmill. Barely. Ugh. BUT, I did it. And no, I’m not telling you my times. Sorry.

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I played hooky today, caught up on some much missed sleep and went on a two hour run. Aggie and I gleefully skipped over ice. I hucked sticks and walked big hills, skidded over frozen rivers and generally reveled in being back home with my dog girl. I so love my home trails. I love the ice, the layers. I love running slow and long. I love being home. And I love it even more now. Something about absence and fondness…
When it’s 90 degrees and 100% humidity, will someone remind me about how wonderful I think that sounds right about now? Thanks.

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Thanks for running with me,

Astrid

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I <3 Winter

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I have yet to love running in the cold. Friday topped out at a balmy 24 degrees. I needed out, though, so instead of a run, a hike was in order.
Most of the above photos are from Lye Brook Falls, here in southern VT. The falls itself is around 140 feet. It’s about a five mile round trip and pretty easy going. Aside from the flat light, it was a beautiful walk with hubs and a happy Aggie dog.
Hiking at new spots is okay. Can you tell I struggled with an adjective? I want to be grateful for having the ability to get out and go. I am. But, hiking is not running. And (more griping) running on the treadmill is not trail running. If given a choice, I’d pick hiking. Treadmill running is about as fun as dental work.
I’ve been to the gym twice in the last ten days to run indoors. It was really a blast to be back there, but the most I could last on the treadmill was 40 minutes. The real highlight was watching my reflection in the glass. For the entire 40 minutes. Ugh.
I can’t believe I miss the humidity and bugs of summer. I miss getting up with the early sun of July to run before the heat of late morning. Maybe if there was snow on the trails…
So I wait for cross country skiing. My shins are healing. My IT band rarely bothers me. I’m focusing on LOTS of stretching and portion control. I’m still running outside, but only two days a week. I gave up tracking mileage (for now). The plan is to get back into spinning and try some cross fit and Zumba. Anything to keep up cardio and stay off the TM of doom. Any ideas? I’d be grateful for feedback of what you do to keep fit through the winter.
Hope you all had an awesome Thanksgiving.
Thanks for reading,
Astrid