When we entered the theatre snow was falling and it was a bit windy. When we left two hours later, I was driving white-knuckled all the way home. I said to my daughter, "Can you imagine if the weather is like this for my race in two weeks?" She said, "Would you run it if it was?"
Good question. I winced at the thought of running in something like this. How bad would the weather have to be for me not to run in the kind of race that I've been looking forward to, and training hard for, over the past several months? It made me think about the worst weather I've run in to date, and that would be a couple of years ago at the Prince Edward County half marathon. It was October, the sky was overcast, and rain began spitting down as we all huddled around the starting line area under tents, waiting to begin our 21.1 K adventure. Seconds before the official start, as we stood packed like sardines ready to roll, freezing rain, as if on cue, began pelting down on our heads even harder. I remember starting to laugh while pulling out my cell phone from my pocket and snapping pics of my friends as we huddled under our dollar store raincoats or makeshift ones made from garbage bags, shouting, "BRING IT ON!" Because once you get as far as the start line, you may as well start.
I looked up "worst weather for running" just out of curiosity and, not surprisingly, found discussions between runners from all around the world who, it seems, will run in pretty much all kinds of weather, from snowstorms and floods to electrical thunderstorms and hurricanes. Then I came up with a few scenarios that would determine my 'yes' or 'no' response to my daughter's question:
I would still run Around the Bay in really nasty weather if:
- The weather didn't get nasty until we arrived (We drove all the way to Hamilton, so....).
- All my running friends decided to tough it out (Although I draw the line at jumping off a cliff).
- I am wearing sufficient layers, a balaclava (or two) and a really good windbreaker (or two).
- I could walk when I wanted to (Yes, always).
- I could cry when I wanted to (Did that during my full marathon. Did they really need the bagpiper?)
- There are no cars on the roads (Pretty sure it's a closed course, at least for 4 hours).
- There is a lot of really, really good food at the finish line (I hope...I hope...).
- There is a bottle (or two) of wine waiting to be uncorked at home to celebrate (No-brainer).
- It meant I could rest and take it easy for a couple of weeks afterwards (Another no-brainer).
- Those 60 and 70+ age group competitors are going to do it (You know they will).
So I guess that means come hell or high water, or, in this case, a freak blizzard, I probably will, maybe, for sure.