One of the things I love most about running is getting outside and appreciating all that nature can throw at you. Living in Scotland, for much of the year this means wind, rain and cold temperatures but also clean fresh air and big skies. And because perfect running weather days are few and far between – blue skies, no wind, sunshine – I think when they come we enjoy those days so much more than if our climate was more agreeable.
But these past few weeks I have found the start of the year hard work, somehow the winter darkness has seemed darker, the February grey skies more drab, and the wind and rain more blowy and wetter than I remember.
Maybe it’s because these past few weeks I have been carrying a bit of an injury, and it is taking the edge of my running enjoyment. I am trying to run less and rest up to fix the strain, but like most runners I am impatient and resent missing runs. So instead I am scouring running books, back issues of Runners World magazine and running forums seeking the magic formula that will make the ache vanish.
I have the runner’s dilemma – of course I know from reading the collective wisdom of ‘how to deal with injury’ that I should stop running or cross train- but I have entered a race on March 17 and each day I am not running I get more irritable, as my chances of being even vaguely prepared to run a half marathon become less likely.
This morning I woke to rain and grey skies, and was almost talking myself out of my Saturday run, but with the curious logic that may strike a chord with fellow runners, I decided that even if after my run I spent the rest of the day limping around, I would still feel better than if I did not run.
Outdoors the weather was much better than it had looked from the warmth of the house, and although grey, there was little wind and no rain to speak of. There were four of us this morning, and we took it easy along the muddy path of our regular route. After the run my leg was OK and as predicted 4o minutes fresh air with friends was just what the doctor ordered.