Thursday, January 31, 2008

I got my snow (and now it's gone)

I've read in at least a couple of local blogs how the writer could not run on Monday because it snowed. Well, I say pshaw! I had snow on Monday morning (and ice in places too), but I was happily out there at 6:30 a.m. running in the snow.

Now I'll admit I was running slowly. And I walked through the iciest bits just to guard against slipping and falling. I only ran 5.2 miles, but it took me as long as a typical 5.5 miler, or even a 5.8.

But you know, a layer of snow creates a soft, forgiving surfaces to run on--softer than the usual sidewalk and street. I am sure if there had been six or eight inches of new snow things might have been different (I would have gotten out the snowshoes), but with a partially packed base layer and maybe a couple of inches of fresh soft snow, my feet did not even get wet. And I was wearing my regular running shoes with a mesh top.

I suspected we had gotten snow long before I got up to run in it. Sometime in the early morning hours I got up to go to the bathroom, and although my bathroom window is the usual kind of obscured glass, there was a brightness showing through it that was not typical for 3 a.m. When it snows, when there is snow on the ground, everything seems light and bright even amidst the darkness. I guess every source of light--the moon, stars, and streetlights--reflects off the bright white snow. So, seeing that gleaming outside the window, I went back to my bedroom and pulled aside a window shade and saw that it was true--the ground was covered with snow.

Other than the aforementioned softness, slickness, and slowness, it was a pretty typical run for a Monday morning. I always make Monday an easy run, since it's usually the day after a long run (not to mention that getting up on Monday mornings is just hard). I was pretty stiff and achy this Monday, probably because of Sunday's long run, and extra hills, and 25 minute sprint at the end. (Now that I think about it, all that could also have contributed to my slow pace!)

As usual, snow created an exciting yet chaotic environment for work. About half of the attorneys and staff couldn't make it in, and at least half of the clients called in as well, so the rest of us were scrambling to fill in and move things around.

The sun actually came out and melted most of the snow by the end of the day (at least in Everett), but the weather forecasters were promising even more snow on Tuesday. So I had some hope--although rather dim--of being able to snowshoe to work on Tuesday morning. More realistically, I decided to skip going to the Y on early Tuesday and planned to walk to work instead.

I got up several times during the night on Monday night and Tuesday morning, but each time I looked out the ground was still wet and snowless. By 4 or 5 a.m. I doubted we would get any snow...but there was no point in changing my plans now.

So I took the hike to work anyway. At midday I walked to my favorite Starbucks for a latte and then back to my office and court, a round trip of 3.5 miles or more. Finally, at about 7:30 p.m. I headed out of the office and briskly walked the final mile home. Throughout the day, my walks added up to about 6.8 miles. (Too bad I didn't think of wearing a pedometer!)

If it weren't for all the files I frequently need to tote to and from court, I would walk to work more often.

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