I woke up on Saturday morning knowing I had to go out there and run for 80 minutes. I also knew that if it was snowing I was going to back out — it was less than 20 degrees out.
There were only flurries. I texted my friend, she was still up for it. I woke Karl up and off we went. By the time we got to Crystal City and left the garage with the other runners, the flurries had become a full-blown snow. We were already too committed to back out. So the 6 of us went on our way.
We were going to take the Mt. Vernon Trail, cross into DC via the 14 street bridge, and run around the Tidal Basin. We were excited to see DC in the snow!
The way towards DC was horrible. The wind was strong, it was cold, the hard pellets of snow were hitting us on the face, and we could barely keep our eyes open. Ice was accumulating on our eye lashes which made visibility even worse. I thought I was going to get frostbite on my uncovered face.
I had never run on the snow before, and was a bit scared of slipping. I slowed down my pace and ended up running with Ben, who was also taking it easy. Karl was running faster wearing his Five Fingers KSO, which were getting soaked.
From across the Potomac we couldn’t even see DC. All we could see is a white and gray fog and the bridge disappearing into it. We felt a bit insane, and a tad hardcore for sucking it out. We must have seen another dozen runners during our time out there, all with smiles on their faces, everyone greeting each other.
We barely made it to the Tidal Basin when it was time to turn around and head back. And when we turned, everything suddenly felt right. The wind was no longer on our face, the swoosh-swoosh of our feet on the snow provided a great background noise. The snow, which had accumulated to about an inch, was nice and fluffy and easy on the legs.
I ran the rest of the way with a huge smile on my face. This was fun! This was relaxing! This was right… And to think that if I knew it was going to be like that, I wouldn’t even had gotten out of bed! When we ran under a bridge and hit pavement, it felt wrong. My legs felt heavy and slow.
We finished our runs covered in snow. I started shivering as soon as I stopped running and got into the car. We drove home, I changed into drier warmer clothes, put on layers, hid under a fleece blanket, and drank some hot tea. The shivering, however, didn’t stop for another hour and a half. I guess running outside when it’s 18 degrees, but “feels like” 8 is a lot colder than it seems. My face aside, I was completely comfortable during the run, with just the right amount of clothes. But when I got home, my skin was red and cold.
I turned the computer on and saw a weather alert “the snowstorm unexpectedly headed north, the County is prepared with an emergency plan” — I didn’t just run on snow, I ran during a snowstorm!
But the run? Was worth it! We might get hit with snow this weekend again. And for once, I’m excited about it!