So Friday afternoon, I got the news: The Chicago Polar Dash Half Marathon was being postponed due to weather conditions! Really? This is Chicago! The race is being moved to January 21st instead (one week later). So I cannot say that I am disappointed, just surprised. Yeah, the temps were going to be in the teens and there was likely a lot of snow on the path from the day before. But they didn't cancel school or close the city for that. So it is curious that the Chicago Police Department made the call to postpone the event.
So to put a positive spin on this, I decided that it was a good thing to give me another week to recover from the Disney World Marathon Weekend and to do a few more training runs just to make sure the legs were in decent shape. So why not start?! So instead of racing on Saturday, I went for a Long Run. I was going to run with my Run Club, but when I arrived at what I 'thought' was the meeting location, I quickly figured out I was mistaken. I waited for a while just to make sure, and then went to my usual Long Run location: the Ilinois Prairie Path,
The temperature was 16 degrees but thankfully not very windy. The path itself was covered in snow -- about 5-6 inches worth. And there were not a lot of people out there this time so there weren't any paths through the snow I could run within. So I was blazing my own trail. I was planning on running 6 miles. But after about 2 miles, I could feel my legs getting tired because of all the extra work it takes to keep stabilized on unsure footing (i.e. snow). I decided to cut it a bit short and not risk tripping or something. So I ran for 5.5 miles and called it 'good'! I was happy that I got out there and ran anyway. And, it was a good 'field test' of the clothes I plan to wear for the Polar Dash. I wanted to make sure I would be warm enough. Well, what I wore kept me warm for over an hour so I call 'win' on that score.
This week, I went for two runs, both in the club because I just did not feel up to running in the single digit temps. My Tuesday run was in the evening after work. I don't like running at night because by the end of the day, I am tired. I think that is what happened to me on this run. I felt tired right from the start. I think my blood sugar was low. That would definitely have explained the feeling. I ran for 3.65 miles and was happy when I finished. I grabbed a protein shake afterwards, and then went home to have dinner.
I have to say that it made me worried. It is one thing to feel tired towards the end of a training run, but to feel tired from the start was a new thing. It made me wonder whether I still had another race "in me" or if I needed more rest. It didn't help that I had read an article on Active.Com about recent research about runners and cardiac arrest incidents. The report itself was actually positive in the sense that runners are not more inclined to have heart attacks that anyone else (in fact it is less). But you know how things can get planted in your head? Well that got planted in there.
So Thursday, I went for another run in the club with my running partner Mike. We ran for over 5 miles in the mid-afternoon. And this time, the run felt great! I got into a good rhythm early and we just kept going for a solid hour. After the run, we hit the Jacuzzi for 10 minutes, and then hit the lap pool for about 8 walking laps in the cool water. It was a good workout, and renewed my confidence that I was ready for the Polar Dash Half Marathon coming up this Saturday.