Thursday, January 19, 2012

Winter is Back

Winter finally arrived in Madison, Wisconsin. Shockingly, it took long enough. If you look at the calendar of seasons, I believe winter started on December 21st [so not quite one month ago from today] and it ends on March 20th. Yes, winter hasn’t even been official for one month. Yet, we typically have a lot of snow by now.

For someone who is scared of running in the snow, I was still running in shorts and outdoors in this winter. Mind you, it was pitch black out.

I was itching for some snow to go cross country skiing. Other than that, I wasn’t dying for the snow this year. I mean, I love to get snowed in. And I love watching the snow out my window while having a glass [or several] of red wine [pinot grigio is my “warm season beverage.”]

I started taking the bus about a year ago and I love it. I never liked public transportation before. Everything is better in Madison, Wisconsin. Here, you get on the bus and it’s full of normal people. [And some typical Madison sketchy people.] My route goes through the University. Non state-employees, please don’t start complaining, but it’s free for me. And I realized the other day that since I have moved to Madison, Wisconsin, I have put less than 500 miles a month on my car. [Even moreso, now that I take the bus] which results in rare trips to the gas station. The last 3,000 mile check-up I had was in July and I am still not due for my next one.

So, I was worried about waiting for the bus because it was going to be “SO COLD” in these Wisconsin winters. However, as you may know by now, I run in the morning and it takes me a long time to cool down so this is not an issue.

Although undiagnosed, I am sure I have Raynaud's. My hands go numb less than five minutes after going outside. I have learned to power walk [no offense but faster than some people jog] the majority of the time and wear mittens [and have hand warmers for excessive outdoor activity].

Here is how you can enjoy this cold weather:
Walk fast and wear layers. A nice and heavy windbreaker with mittens and several pants are a must.

For example, today I took the bus to work and it was a high of 7. When I went to the bus this morning, it was 4 degrees. I had just worked out, so I was still warm. I wore my coat, work pants with leggings under, a sweater with a tee shirt and winter boots. Upon my walk home from the bus, I took the dog for her daily walk around the square. This walk is .92 miles. I decided to add a little to it. Here is why. The more I walked and walked faster, the warmer I would get. So when I returned home, I was warm through the middle.

All you need to do to enjoy the cold weather is embrace it! When I am cold, I layer up and literally go out into it. Once I get my heartrate up, I am toasty.

Embrace the cold weather. Don't stay away from it. That will just make you hate it. And then you may want to quit complaining and move to Florida.

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