Sunday, January 15, 2012

running with snowshoes

Yesterday was my long run day. But the weather was not inviting to run outside: the day before we had a snowstorm, with 30 cm or more of powder snow everywhere, so the only place where I could hope to find a path clear of snow was the coastal bike lane, perhaps. The problem was that it was -10 degrees Celsius outside, with 20 knots winds, making the temperature really feeling more like -20 C. I did not want to reiterate my coldest run experience, even with my new equipment... The last option, or so I thought, was to run on my treadmill, but the prospect of running 130 minutes on the treadmill did not satisfy me neither. So I thought: "this is the opportunity to go cross-country skiing!". I looked on internet what the conditions were for cross-country skiing at the Coopérative de ski de fond Mouski, and I saw that there was a competition for cross-country skiing and for snowshoe running, with a picture of somebody running with snowshoes on the advertisement page. I had not imagined that one could run with snowshoes, I thought they would be too cumbersome for that. But I knew what I was going to do: run with the snowshoes my friend Dany had lent me in Parc Beauséjour, where I would be sheltered from the wind by the forest!
So I put my snowshoes on, and started running toward Parc Beauséjour. Boy, running with snowshoes is very physically taxing! Especially when you run on powder snow, and your feet still drop a few centimeters or more in the snow, and a bit of snow gets on your snowshoes, and you have to lift your foot plus the snowshoe plus the bit of snow to make the next step. I could not run fast nor for long. I had to walk a lot to catch up my breath. But the scenery was beautiful, with the forest and the river sleeping under a white blanket. I was running next to a newly-made cross-country ski track, and I crossed some cross-country skiers. Tomorrow, I'll buy some cross-country skis!

This week my right knee ligaments started to hurt on Tuesday after about 1 hour of running on my treadmill, i.e. on a perfectly flat surface. This was not a good sign at all, so I skipped Thursday's session. Yesterday I was glad that my knee did not hurt at all. So, not many miles this week, but this is fine, as this was the "take-it-easy" week, before my training program gets into the heart of the preparation for my 35-mile run.

Distance this week: 24.72 km (15.36 miles).
Distance last week: 45.77 km (28.44 miles).
Distance the week before: 40.14 km (24.94 miles).