Little known fact. The pop band 98 Degrees was actually founded in White River Junction, VT, and originally went by 55 Degrees. Ironic because 1. Everyone always tells me that Vermont is such a backwards chickenfu@$er state and 2. That is the exact temperature it is outside right now.
Why the homage to Vermont's famous average annual temperature and a terrible, terrible pop group? No reason really. I just needed an interesting lead-in to today's topic: how to run when it's crummy out and not get hurt.
This is just a terrible time of year to run outside. Look out your window. It's raining. It's cold. There are leaves covering every possible running surface, turning them into icy sheets of death, and hiding all your trails. Also, it is sort of pretty (yay fall). You need to run 45 minutes. And you just bought a brand new white pair of converse all-stars that you are dreading getting soggy.
Here's what you do you little primadona:
1. Dust off your old poo kickers. You don't need low profile street racers for where you're going.
2. Warm up with a few donkey kicks and some pirouettes. Get those hips moving.
3. Now, get in your car and drive to the deep, deep woods. Town parks are also a good place to find trees too.
4. Park, hide your key in the gas cap, and do a few more donkey kicks to loosen up again.
5. Go for a trail run.
Simple. And fun. Here's why it's good for you.
1. Running off road is by nature slower, so you'll take fewer strides but still get a good aerobic workout because of all the terrain variability.
3. Feel that peaty softy delicious ground. Your knees love you.
3. Terrain again. Off road running helps your hips get strong. Lots of lateral movement, stepping up, changes in stride length give you a new type of movement that is a refereshing and healthy change from your normal 10k gait.
5. Gait again. You really need to focus to stay steady with all the short steps, gaps, and hops. This is great mental practice. Plus, you'll learn the hard way if you can't keep your feet underneath you. Hello leafy slip-and-slide.
Try it out. Oh, and look up every now and then too. It's just beautiful out there.