There are a lot of situations in life when I have been considered a strong woman. Brave. Tough. Fearless. I do what I have to do, I guess. But there is one thing that turns me into a whimpering pansy in the blink of an eye:
Yes, it’s true. Despite the fact that I spent the first 20 years of my life a New Englander (10 of those in the state of Vermont) I turn into a shivering pansy when the thermometer drops below, oh, 65. And all ten of those years buried beneath feet of snow were spent daydreaming of a tropical beach. Hence my move to Myrtle Beach, which as it turns out, is far from tropical and still pretty darn cold in the winter, but I digress. My ideal running weather? 70 degrees, sunny, slight breeze. I knew, moving back to New England, that I was going to have to put on my big girl
panties long underwear if I wanted to run anywhere other than on the treadmill (we will completely ignore the fact that it’s a struggle for me to simply walk across a parking lot while freezing rain pelts my face, but for the sake of the blog we will stick to running). I knew it was coming, and probably relatively soon. However, I was not really prepared, at only the end of October, to wake up to this:
And a bunch more predicted over the weekend. I sit here, shivering despite the fact that my parents raised the thermostat simply for my sake as I acclimate. And as I read facebook posts about group runs this weekend (not to mention a half marathon next weekend) I try to ignore the panic that screams “NOOO! Go hide under your down comforter and wish for June!!”. I mean, what do you even wear to RUN in the snow? I’m sure many of you remember the infamous Myrtle Beach Marathon of 2010…we had a record breaking 2 inches of snow and canceled the race. People were FURIOUS, but the truth is, none of the locals knew what to even DO with 2 inches of snow. I can’t say that I was upset staying in in the confines of my warm house (even if the snow was all melted by 10 am).
Two years ago, when we were here in New Hampshire for Christmas, I wore a pair of my dads old sweatpants over some capri tights and a hoodie. It did the job for 2 miles. But this time around, I’m not on vacation. No, any and all long runs for January’s Goofy challenge (that’s a half marathon followed by a marathon the next morning) will be done in this snowy Arctic tundra known as New Hampshire. Because frankly I’m not sure what’s worse…a cold nose or 22 miles on a treadmill.
As I sit here I feel a twinge in my heart thinking of all of the things I will miss about South Carolina, the things I’ve come to take for granted over the last decade. The ocean, right at my finger tips. Salty breeze. Palmetto trees. Boat drinks. Warm sand. Surfing. Watching dolphins splash and play just off shore. Even those obnoxious jellyfish. But I refuse, refuse to let all of this ruin my fun (both the circumstance and my inability to hold in body heat) so I will face the snow, the cold, the pelting icy rain.
But first I need some super warm gear.
Help. What’s warm? What’s waterproof? What’s a must have, and what do I skip? How do you keep your toes warm? I’m at the mercy of my tundra running blog readers (and don’t laugh at this picture with a measly 1/2″ of snow. I know I’m going to see much worse, let me work myself up to it)
Suggestions welcomed. Please and thank you!