Sunday, November 11, 2018

Coming in From the Cold

Disclaimer: I received pairs of Swiftwick Pursuit and Vision socks in exchange for my unbiased review. This post contains affiliate links.

The arrival of cold weather here in the Midwest is inevitable. No matter how much you mentally prepare yourself for winter, when the temperature drops, it's always a shock to the system. Especially when it happens so early, as it has this year. We had snow this week and we had temperatures in the 20s. This time of year brings strong winds which ushers in the change of seasons, but combined with the cold, makes for some really unpleasant running conditions.

What is a runner to do? Take to the treadmill or suck it up and go outside? You know what I did.


Running
My runs this week were remarkable for cold temperatures and fierce winds. The "wind chill" became a factor once again. On Wednesday, I headed out to the bike path to do 8 miles, running out into the wind. My resolve was sorely tested but I kept reminding myself that the trip back would be my reward. With the wind at my back, I had negative splits. The extra push was pretty sweet!


On Saturday, I wanted to do another 10 mile run. My running club was planning a run to a local preserve where I do a lot of cycling. The preserve path is a really pretty 7.3 mile loop and I thought it was the perfect opportunity to run there. I planned a detour so I could get my extra miles in. I started off with the pack, but when I slowed to do my first walk interval, a couple people asked if I was ok. I explained what I was doing and got the usual "oh". Guys, it's how I run now! I kept playing cat and mouse with the pack until I split off to do my detour. I actually enjoyed my solo miles much more than running with the group because when I ran alone I didn't feel at all self-conscious about doing my intervals. The weather started to take a toll on me. It was 24 degrees when we were out there and with the wind, it was pretty painful. I returned to the parking lot with the wind at my back and 9 miles on the Garmin. I should have gone another mile, but I was just exhausted from fighting the elements and was happy to be done. We all met at Starbucks for coffee after. I need to pause here and comment that I really don't run very often with my running club. That has to change. This was a fun outing with a really nice group of people.

Look how many of us braved the cold on Saturday!
picture courtesy of Busse Woods Running Club
I woke up Sunday determined to do a short little shake out run around the neighborhood and struggled to finish 3. Chilly and windy again. Why can't we just have a little moderation with our weather?


CrossFit
Sammy Jo and I continued to work on upper body strength but a woman can't run on upper body work alone! She had me do some back squats. She increased my reps to 6 and I did 3 sets at 115#. It was hard, y'all! I did some resistance band work too and then we worked on kipping swings and toes to bar. I'm a little frustrated at how hard it is! Bootcamp was crazy hard this week. There was such a variety of activities, including my personal favorite, swinging the sledgehammer to hit the tire. I could do that all day.


Yoga
I only got in one yoga class this week, but it was a good one! Five Parks Yoga came through again with a 40 minute Deep Release for the Lower Body class. I did stop on Monday's run to strike a warrior pose. Running in the cold and the wind certainly requires warrior toughness!

Doing some exploring on my run
Off the Road
My Badger came home this weekend to celebrate his girlfriend's birthday. While we didn't see a lot of him, we did accompany him to the Big 10 rugby championship game which was held at one of the local rugby clubs. He played a lot of rugby there in high school and it was great to go back to watch his team play. Two of his high school coaches were there as well. Wisconsin played Ohio State for the championship and it was a physical, muddy, and exciting match. The score was tied at the end until Wisconsin scored and won the match and the trophy! While Matthew didn't play in this game, it was exciting to be a part of it all. We're looking forward to 3 more years of Badger rugby.

Congrats to the Wisconsin Badgers!
Big 10 Rugby Champions!

SWIFTWICK SOCKS 
Guys, I got to try more socks! The obsession is real. Swiftwick makes socks in the USA for athletes. I  had forgotten how great these socks are until I received a pair of Pursuit Seven crew socks to try.  While the Pursuit is made with merino wool and is great for all 4 seasons, I like to run in wool in the winter. The crew height works great on cold days, and there are a variety of cuff lengths depending on your preference. The toe and heel are reinforced for durability and I just loved the fit and feel of these socks. I've been running in them since I received them. I also received a pair of Vision Five Turkey Trot socks just in time for my upcoming Turkey Trot! The Swiftwick Vision line of socks are also made from merino wool and come in a bunch of fun designs. Like the Pursuit, the Vision socks also are available in several cuff heights. The Vision socks felt a little lighter to me than the Pursuit. I love them both and I will definitely be wearing Swiftwick on my runs and bike rides.

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How was your week? Is it cold where you live? Did you know I belonged to a running club? Do you belong to a running club? Group run or solo run? Run/walk intervals? What are your favorite socks? Have you tried Swiftwick?


64 comments :

  1. The weather this week was really a big bunch of yuck. Not much sunshine until the weekend (when the temps were at their coldest), but it is what it is. I guess autumn was good for its two-week duration, right? Onward!

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    1. Although it was really unpleasant, I don't know if I'd go so far to call it yuck. We've got winter ahead, remember!

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  2. Definitely cold, and I'm so with you on the moderation thing only of course there basically hasn't been any this year. :(

    I like running with a group, but just haven't really found my group yet, as far as intervals/pace goes.

    Balega and Mud Gear Compression socks are my favs.

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    1. Yeah, if only I could find a run/walker. It was nice not being alone, tho.

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  3. A good week! Sorry about the problem with the group and your intervals. My friend Ruth and I are offering a jeffing taster session at club run on Thursday - we're making our own loop route and hoping to get at least some take-up. Fingers crossed. And snow??? Already??

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  4. Wow that Busse Woods crew rolls deep! I have yet to run there but have been meaning to. How well maintained is it in the winter with snow?

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    1. Good question and I'll find out for you!

      We ran at Paul Douglas this time. It's a gorgeous preserve with hills but it is desolate! I've biked there many times but this was my first run. Both preserves are really pretty.

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  5. With a plan determined to heal my complex meniscus tear (PT and exercise, I'm able to avoid surgery yay), I signed up for a gym, only minutes from our home. And they offer Yoga classes. I went for my first one yesterday and am very happy.
    Since I am no longer able to run, my physical therapist, who happens to be a close friend, suggested cross training along with walking. Besides tons of equipment--and the place is large and spotless, immaculate--it offers Silver Sneakers and Gold & Fit classes for older patrons. I think I have finally found a do-able way to keep fit.
    I still miss the running, always will.
    Like you, we've been enduring brutally cold weather here. I agree, where is the moderate weather? I think back three or four years when I ran on Thanksgiving Day in my tank. Maybe we'll get a Thanksgiving present, nice days.

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    1. I'm glad to hear that you found a place that works for you! As I reduce the days I run, I'm turning to cross training more and more.

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  6. I continue to be baffled at the extreme temperatures of Chicago. I don't understand how a place that can get to 99 degrees in the summer can also be below freezing very quickly. I would think because it is along the lakes up there, but I believe some places in Utah experience that same weather patterns, no? Okay, my weather geek is coming out now. It just started getting chilly here on Saturday. It wouldn't be so bad except for that dang wind. I hope it doesn't stick around! Thanks for the link up!

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    1. We have such weather extremes here--I have the same thoughts as you! The lake does have a big effect on our weather--if anything we get a little bit of moderation from the lake. I know, it's just crazy.

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  7. Yeah, I was not ready for "wind chill" despite loving fall running in general.
    It's so weird asking a runner if s/he is OK. I tend to do it if I see someone who appears to be struggling especially in summer heat. Generally I get a "yes, thanks" or similar but once I got told to mind my own business. Um, OK.
    PS: Mr. Sun is still in my head, you're a meanie.

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    1. Since I started doing run/walk intervals, I get asked if I'm OK a lot. I appreciate the concern, but I hate having to explain what I'm doing. It took me forever to get my head around doing intervals and I'd just like to move on...

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  8. We have had much cooler temps too but ours are still in my sweet spot and not to cold yet. It is a little more challenging to run intervals in a group. I also feel like I am playing catch up w them but that's what is working for me too right now. Hope I can make it through my half next weekend w them. congrats to your son's team!

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    1. I was enjoying our moderately cool weather and then it had to all get ruined with snow and wind. Boo! I'm glad the run/walk intervals are working out for you too. Hey, a finish is a finish, right?

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  9. Oh my gosh, it got cold here, but 40s cold, not 20s cold! We did have wind though! I need to re-remember what to wear for different temperatures. Glad you got a glimpse of your son this weekend. ;-)

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  10. We had some really strong winds on Saturday and I definitely wasn't prepared for that! I feel like I am fine running in temps in the 30s if theres no wind...but wind makes it feel so much colder. And I don't have warm enough clothes for temps much colder than that, so I might be on the treadmill more over the next month!
    I have a pair of swiftwick socks and they are great. I might need to try some thicker ones for winter.

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    1. I just love the Swiftwick socks and I will definitely plan on buying more.

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  11. It's not the cold, it's the slipping...It looks like your trails were clear though, so that's good!

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    1. We were lucky because the snow only stuck to the grass.

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  12. I'm shivering just looking at your pics. Swiftwick is my sock of choice. They've never done me wrong. (Talking to you Feetures!) I ran with a group of girls last Winter and it was fun. However, it's just so much easier to pop out of my own door and not drive 20 minutes to the location.

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    1. I didn't know you liked Swiftwick! Smart lady and that's why I like you!. I totally agree with you about the solo run, tho. I did enjoy this change of pace.

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  13. We got your wind today! The race I ran was along the coast so we got hit from every angle. There were times that I got blown to the side and would run into people next to me. Ugh. Wind really sucks the wind out of your sails...Lol!

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    1. It's the truth! I can run in sub-zero temps if there's no wind. The wind is a total joy sucker!

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  14. So much for our "mild" winter! I don't have my head around single digit wind chills yet, although today was more manageable than yesterday. That wind is icy though!

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    1. I'm holding out hope that this was a total random cold snap. It's all I've got.

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  15. I don't mind cold, it's the wind that does it for me. We got snow today, and after last winter, we need the snow! It was quite mild and our summer was brutal. As long as people know what they're doing on the roads, I don't mind.

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    1. Oh, it's totally the wind for me. i can deal with the cold if it's not windy.

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  16. Wow, that is a big running group! How nice that you enjoyed the camaraderie of the post-run Starbucks visit...I love sitting around with my runner friends after a run - feels like the run isn't finished until that happens, LOL.

    We are going to get down to freezing here on Monday night - seems early for that, but hey - it will finally kill all of the mosquitos that have been thriving thanks to all the rain we are continuing to get.

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  17. Swiftwick are my socks of choice for wearing when working or just around the house, but I wear Injinji toe socks for running. I think you recommended I try Swiftwick way back when I was getting so frustrated with my Features slipping down under my heel all the time - so thank you!

    Thanks, also, for the linkup!

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    1. I like Injini socks too! But Swiftwicks are the bomb for the cold weather!

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  18. I have heard so much about those socks- I need to try them out! A running club sounds fun, I would probably enjoy one. It has gotten cold - yesterday morning it was "feels like 7" - brrr!

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    1. I'm already over the cold weather and we've got a long way to go!

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  19. We had some snow this week even! It was pleasantly chilly early in the week and then had a few unseasonably bitter days. I hope a bit of warmer weather comes our way for a few more weeks!

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    1. I don't mind the cold if there's no wind. Hopefully that will be the pattern this week!

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  20. I hate this cold weather and it's only just started.

    But I will brave the cold (unless it is icy) rather than ever use the treadmill.

    Running with a group is the best.

    It is so hard to find someone who is at your pace and style and distance.

    I have running friends and usually can get to at least run part of the run with them.

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    1. I'm not in love with running in a group. I don't like to make small talk when I run--I really like to get lost in my head. But it was nice to know that there were others out there.

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  21. I am in Iowa and the weather this week hit me like a brick. It is so hard to get motivated in the morning with the cold and the dark. I did feel like a bada$& on Saturday's run, however. When I ran back in the door, the real feel was 11 degrees and I felt comfy. Nailed the layers. But today, I heard the wind rattling the windows and could not do it. Tomorrow morning, the windchill is supposed to be 5 degrees so I am going to brush off the treadmill. Yuck! I really struggle with the cold and the dark. Just the cold, I can handle. But coupled with the dark, I just stay in bed. :-(

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    1. Yeah, we're supposed to get really cold tomorrow too. High of 20-something. REALLY? I'm like you, I don't mind staying in bed a little longer.

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  22. Well. We had one day in the 60s, but today we are looking at high 70s. On the plus side, we should see some 40s next week on my camping trip. So that's nice.

    I wish you didn't feel self-conscious about your intervals. I guess because I live close to Disney, it's just a huge thing here. We have Galloway groups and Jeff Galloway seems to be a bit of a local hero.

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    1. I wish people would get it, but everyone here is pretty hardcore. I do pretty well, pace-wise, with my intervals, so hopefully they'll see the merits in it.

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  23. I guess I'm lucky I live where I do because I'm not very good at braving the cold. Well, I did just do it at Ragnar, but I was really just doing that for the team! I even wimped out on a walk because it was too cold this morning. Oh well, another day of recovery!

    That's such a huge running group! I miss my old group sometimes, but I do love running alone too.

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    1. Safety-wise, it was nice having all that company on a very desolate trail.

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  24. Ugh, I've been hating the cold and wind too. Two of my runs last week were on the treadmill, but I know I need to just go ahead and get outside in the cold to get acclimated to it. Thanks for the reminder on the socks! I think I need new running socks so I'll have to look into these.

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  25. Last week started off strong for me but Santa Ana winds and fires turned everything upside down. We are about 4 miles from where the Woolsey Fire started - it went away from us, but left our air smoky. Two more days of this stuff and then we're hoping for a reprieve. It's the price we pay for never running in the snow. Unfortunately, the price was a lot steeper this time.

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    1. I think about that a lot--that I could live somewhere with better weather than Chicago, but then there are earthquakes and wildfires in Cali; hurricanes in the south. I guess it's always something!

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  26. We had similar weather, though here it's showing up a bit late rather than early.

    I've heard of Swiftwick but thought they only made synthetic socks (always give me blisters). Good to know they have merino too!

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    1. I'm really liking the Swiftwick socks. The weather, not so much.

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  27. Great set of workouts! I am NOT ready for the wintry weather...we're getting closer to the freezing mark and I'm dreading it! I love running in the winter though, but I'm still taking it easy for the time being. The socks look great! I definitely need to stock on some new pairs.

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    1. Today was just brutal and I'm somewhat dreading tomorrow's run. Brrrr

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  28. Whew you asked a lot of questions this post! I love the "cold" but I love Florida cold...which is like between 40-60. That's ideal running temperatures for me. When it got down to the 20s in January, I was miserable! I can't imagine running in that weather for more than a week lol.

    I love my Pro Compression socks! Those are my absolute favorites. I wear them in every season and have a pair to match every outfit (multiple pairs to match every outfit in fact)

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    1. I hear so many good things about Pro Compression. I actually have a few pairs of low socks from them and I do like them a lot!

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  29. You did a great job getting on there and dealing with that wind! The temps took a sudden drop here too and it was a shock to the system for sure! The weatherman uttered the phrase nor'easter on the news tonight - I can't even! Not yet!

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    1. I saw that and I am so hoping that there is no nor'easter in your future!

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  30. I wimped out on the group run this past weekend at Paul Douglas. I would have been more than happy to keep you company on your run/walk intervals, as I find myself running that way more and more, although not necessarily by choice :)

    One of your readers asked if Busse Woods was maintained in the winter with snow. Sadly, I don't believe it is. I vividly remember doing a loop (7.25 miles) last winter with 6 inches of snow on the trail.

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    1. It's harder to find places to run in the winter. The Palatine Path is cleared from Anderson to Hicks. They also clear Twin Lakes, so if I need to go long, I'll run down Hicks to Twin Lakes and back.

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  31. The cold is heerreeeee!!! And here to stay, for what, the next 6 months? (seriously, right?) I have only been out a handful of times, the unstable snowy/icy roads have been a little extra work for my recovering hip flexor strain. Time to bust out the Yak Trax! Those Swiftkick socks look great. I love that ankle height. I'll have to look into those.

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    1. It's just too soon to be so cold. That means winter will be longer...

      The Swiftwick Pursuit socks come in a variety of heights which I really like! The crew I picked is perfect for winter.

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  32. Look at the size of that running group! And in that cold too! Gosh, well done for braving that weather. Looks like it's going to be a long winter but I hope you manage more days outdoors than on the treadmill. Shathiso @www.thegaboronerunner.com

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    1. I think I only did 1 or 2 days on the mill last winter--hoping to keep outside as much as possible this year!

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