My Ankles Are So PO’d At Me Right Now

My husband is just the best. Not only did research my Pinterest boards to find me the coziest, prettiest sweater for Christmas, but he also got me some spikes. Running spikes. True runner love!

We’ve had just a tad of snow lately here in the northeast, so I thought I’d try them out on one of the local rail trails. Our town plows the roads fairly well, so they are clear-ish enough to run without spike assistance. But I had a new toy! I must play with my new running toy!!

They are call NanoSpikes, made by Kahtoola. They fit over your regular running shoes and give you some grip on slushy/slippery surfaces.

snow running spikes nanospikes

As you can see, they fit great, without hitting of the squeezy parts of my toes (aka, the places where I poked holes in my Hokas to accomodate my gnarly-shaped feet).

Wearing my special new running jacket, I walked to the head of the trail, and slipped them on. The first 200 feet of the trail leads to a power station, and the snow had been compacted by the utility trucks. Perfect! Awesome! I’m running on snow! The cold doesn’t bother me anyway!

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Then, after the power station, the snow was not compacted, merely “pressed down” a bit by some cross-country skiis, hikers/walkers, dogs, etc. I though maybe there would have been some renegade ATV or fat bike tracks to compact it more, but nope.

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I took 5 steps into the deeper, fluffier snow, and on the sixth step, hit a divot, proceded to turn my left ankle. YEOW. THIS IS WHY I DON’T TRAIL RUN.

Haters gonna hate. Divots gonna sprain.

Shake it off, sh-sh sh-shake it off.

I proceded. With each step down into 12″ of snow, it became abundantly clear that I didn’t need spikes — I needed snowshoes. I felt like a big dummy.

I wish I could say I rallied, found My Zone, and the rest of the run went well, but alas, I cannot. I had to hyper-focus on every single step. The effort of pushing out from the snow was not sustainable, especially as the second half of the trail is one long, continual uphill for 2 miles.

Way before my planned turnaround point, I blurted out to no one: F____ this s____! Which really means, “I have a feeling of anger and annoyance of this current activity, which is equivalent to poop.”

I turned around and headed back to the top of the trail, mostly running; some shuffling. Went home, iced my ankles. They are so pissed at me right now.

They’ll get over it. I’ve got a 5k in 2 weeks.

I do like the spikes. They did not impede my running at all. I did that to myself thinking I could snow-fairy my way through an un-groomed trail. I will try them again soon in an appropriate place.

For now I need to go show my ankles some TLC.

 

 

 

A Weird Run

A recent long run was weird for several reasons:

  • It was very cold. That in and of itself isn’t weird. But I didn’t bail because of it, which is weird.
  • I had a cold. Didn’t bail. Weird.
  • We went to the Jersey Shore for the weekend. It snowed there. Beach + snow = weirds me out.
  • I peed under a bridge. Sorry, TMI, but weird.
  • And finally, when hubby and I ran on the boardwalk, it looked like this:

That's hubby, running on the right. I can tell that's him because uh, HE'S THE ONLY PERSON AROUND FOR MILES.

Weird, weird, WEIRD!!

(Now that I’ve typed the word weird several times, I’m staring at it, and I think I’ve misspelled it because it looks weird.)

So my weird run began just after dawn. I needed to get in 7 miles, according to my race calendar. Hubby and I had a rare opportunity to run together, so we mapped the route and went. It was about 20 degrees, but the wind…oh, the wind…was gusting about 30 m.p.h. I knew it was going to be a slog.

That's Mr. See-Nancy-Run and myself, at the start of the weirdness. Oh, another small, but weird thing: I forgot my contacts and had to run with my eyeglasses. Always weird.

We started on the boardwalk and realized we were the only ones there. If you’ve ever been to Ocean City, New Jersey’s boardwalk, you were probably there with throngs of people. I felt like I was in the twilight zone as we ran through…no one.

O.C. got about 3 inches of snow the night before. You’d think that 3 inches wouldn’t be that hard to run through, and I didn’t think it was at first…until about mile 2, when my ankles started to throb. I guess I was running stiff-footed in order to try and “grip” the boards (at times the wind had blown away the snow leaving a sheet of ice). Just keep going, I chanted to myself.

We ran to the end of the boardwalk and into the beautiful Gardens neighborhood of O.C. This was going to be an out-and-back run, meaning you run in one direction, hit the halfway mark of your goal, turn around and run back. Our goal was to get to the base bridge off the island, at the 3.5 mile mark, and turn around.

The problem is, by the time I was within a mile of the bridge, I really had to pee. I’m horrible at timing my fluids. We knew that the restrooms on the boardwalk would likely be open on the way back, but dammit, that would throw off the course. Must get to bridge! There’s a beach entrance at the base of the bridge. I was hoping for a port-a-toilet there, but no such luck. I really needed to go.

Hubby and I ran to the beach and I was desperate. So I ducked under the bridge, just where it meets the sand. Peeing outside is always tricky, but 30 m.p.h. winds required a level of deftness that I wasn’t sure I had. But mission accomplished, and we set off back through the gardens. Of course, we passed not one, but two port-a-toilets at house construction sites on the way back. Grrr.

Back on the boardwalk, there were more footprints, but still basically empty:

See that building on the far left horizon? That’s the Music Pier. It has restrooms, just so you know. (I timed those fluids very badly.)

It’s already a slow run and I’ve stopped twice, why not take a photo of myself in triple layers in the shadow of the music pier?

If photos could convey bitter cold, you'd be grabbing a blanket right now.

So as the run ended, I grabbed an “arty” picture of…

…my duck-footed footprints.

Soemtimes on long runs I push myself to do a little extra, but this time I stopped the second the GPS hit 7.00, and not one hundredth of a mile more. The weird run was over.

Oh, and as I walking back to meet hubby, I started to see a few more people on the boardwalk. Guess what they were doing?

Running.

No doubt about it, runners are weird.

Had any weird runs lately?