My Arctic Running Adventure

ColdRunMainGeorgia and Georgians do not do well with cold.  Take the current arctic blast hitting the south with single digit temperatures and life has been miserable in the “Deep South”.   Monday earlier this week was no exception with temperatures hitting a recorded temperature of sixteen degrees with a feels like temperature of five.  Being a runner and athlete these days I had a run to complete on Monday and I was determined to not let some cold weather keep me from my desired mileage for the day so out I went into the blistering to us southerners cold of the evening.  I had five miles on the schedule but figured with 16 degree temps and feels like temps in the 5 degree and lowering range I would settle for three.  Of course the coldest I have ran previously was during my 3 hour half marathon on Thanksgiving day, twenty three degrees.

As I live in the south where it rarely hits arctic temperatures I bundled up as much as possible.  I put on my tights I wear in twenty degree weather, same shirt, hat, jacket and gloves.  I felt I was bundled pretty well, but I would later be surprised how unprepared I was for the temperatures on that run.  As I progressed my run past the mile marker I realized my feet felt like blocks of ice,my face was burning, hands were starting to feel the bitter cold through the gloves and my water bottle mouth constantly kept freezing up as well as the contents inside.  After a little over a mile it was time to concede that “feels like 5 degrees”  was too cold for my current clothing and myself and it was time to turn around and head back before I did any damage.  As I ran back I realized my sweat wicking tights, which worked wonders in normal temperatures, was pulling my sweat off my legs and then freezing, thus leading my legs to feel the brunt of frozen ice pressed against them.  My toes also started to tingle.  After a total run of 2.3 miles I was glad to be back in the house and peeled out of my clothing.  My legs were beet red, looking like a rash had broken out an my toes were numb.

After warming up and posting my exploits to social media I  realized that never again would I run in anything less than twenty degrees again, unless I bought new colder running clothes.  I guess with the added temperature drops locally I will have to resort to the treadmill til the thaw occurs.  Of course this is the “Deep South” so it wont take long to warm back up again.  Lesson learned, there is a thing called too cold and I have met it.  Til next time.

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13 comments

  1. I cannot imagine running outside in single digit temps! You’re brave!

  2. This is what we deal with all winter here in New England. You do get used to it after a while. 😉

    1. You can keep it 🙂

  3. Sounds nasty – I don’t like the cold…Apparently we are going to get this cold weather shortly… 😦

  4. Tri Madness · · Reply

    I thought the same thing (running outside), then ended up going on the treadmill. Being in Florida, I can’t stand the cold, either! Then this morning, I saw two guys on their bikes at 7:00. 33 degrees. Plus a breeze and the “artificial breeze” caused by going ~ 20mph on the bike. I thought “no way in Hell!” and turned up the heat in my car!

  5. Way to go Chatter! Gives a second meaning to the name!

    1. Yes it does! Thanks for the laugh, did not even put that together.

  6. Below 20 double up! When I read you only wore the tights without wind pants I knew it was going to be rough. Brace effort and now you know!

    1. Yeah, love pushing the limits. Gotta learn the hard way sometimes

  7. […] Monday I ran in the coldest temperatures I have ever dared try and run in (details here).  Of course post run I had time to share the adventure on face book and look at it from afar and […]

  8. yep, that’s pretty cold. That’s what treadmills are for! 😉

    1. I like the challenge and I am stubborn enough to push through a bit til I decide stupidity is ruling the run. Like treadmills for speed work sometimes, but usually I would rather be in the weather.

      1. LOL – I hear you on the “stubborn enough” front… I’m usually like that the first cold run or two of each year… but by the end of the 3rd or 4th arctic month I’m happily on the treadmill

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