December 15, 2011

Had a great medium run of 87 minutes

My wakeup heart rate was 57. I had almost 8 hours sleep last night, and I felt fine today. The sky was cloudy, and when I left home the temperature was in the low 30s (F) and was in the mid 20s when I returned just as it was getting dark.

I forgot both my GPS and my two-phase timer, so I used my watch to measure the overall time of the run, and I counted steps to alternate running with walking. My pace was approximately 130 steps per minute, so by counting the number of times my left foot hit the ground, I had a good estimate of the time to complete 110 seconds. When I got to 110, I kept on running. When I got to 180, I kept on running, and when I got to 240 I stopped for about 45-50 left-foot steps of walking. I was surprised I ran for about 4 minutes without walking. That's double what I've been doing. I thought that this amount of running wouldn't last long, but it lasted for the whole run of 87 minutes (about 5.1 miles). I was also running a bit faster than I've been doing, but I kept my speed down so my legs and body would last the four minutes.

I wore 3 layers, and when I first started running, I felt cold, but after half a mile I started to warm up, and by 1 mile I felt fine. Well, I felt fine except for my fingers. I was wearing light cotton gloves, and my fingers were cold for most of the run.  I kept moving my fingers to try to generate some heat in them due to movement. I think that I'll have to wear my camping mittens that consist of about 1/4 inch of tightly woven wool and a nylon shell. I used them when I was camping in below 0 temperatures in Massachusetts with my scouts, and my fingers never got cold even though I was just walking around. When a person runs, their body diverts blood from hands and feet to the body-core, resulting in cold fingers. However, my experience when I was younger was that after about 2 miles, my fingers got warm. However, as I gotten older, I've discovered that my fingers don't get warmer as I run. Apparently, my blood circulation isn't as good now as it was 30 years ago. Another factor is that 30 years ago, I was running about twice as fast as I'm now running, and I didn't do any walking like I'm doing now. By going faster my body generated more heat. It was common for me, back then, to have sweatcicles hanging the back of my hair when I ran even though the temperature was around 0.

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