It's been a while since I blogged my runs. Truth is, it's been a bit more difficult over the winter than it was over the summer. It's been very cold, icy, snowy and I've been working long hours. I've combated the cold by buying those legging things, but I end up looking like a podgy smurf.
Over Christmas I visited Seattle and Vancouver. Take out the fact that my fear of flying is getting worse, and that FOX News seemed to take pleasure in telling me people were trying to blow airplanes up, and I loved it. They're both great cities to wander around. I drank some local beer, ate some local food, ate some food from thousands of miles away, drank a lot of coffee, and did some running. Two main runs really.
This was the run I went on the first morning I was there. It's a great way to get a feel of a city quickly - get out there and do a run. Look at the body language, look at the architecture, see other runners, see how many people are commuting on public transport, see how many people are eating breakfast before work. This route was suggested by the staff of the hotel and it was nice. Along the harbour front was a lovely mix of tourist stuff (restaurants, aquarium, the odd bar), some hardcore industry (lots of ores being loaded - very vibrant colours, and a train that I swear was about 3 miles long - I didn't get to see the end of it) and some lovely nature walks and public gardens. I managed to catch some kind of chesty cough on the plane over so this was a good way to get some sea air into my lungs.
On Boxing Day I got the Greyhound to Vancouver. A great city. On my last day there I wanted to run a little around Stanley Park. I'd cycled around the sea wall a day or two earlier, but I only wanted a small run... as it was I had one of those runs that you really enjoy. The one where you only envisage half-hour or so but you really get into it and you go for ages. I ended up running around the whole perimeter.
It was COLD on the day I did this and at one point I thought my leg hairs had frozen. I've had frozen leg hairs before - they're a strange feeling. They weren't frozen, but they weren't far off. The sea wall has a great mix of different stuff: some paths with historic totem poles, some beaches, the odd cafe and pathways that are literally a metre wide. On one side you've got a sheer cliff face, on the other is the ocean. Never one to panic too much, I obviously sprinted as fast as I could through these parts...
As it was I ran for 2 hours and 12 minutes when I was away. That's kinda normal for me. When I go away alone I usually come back a bit fitter as I find running somewhere new really enjoyable.
Since getting back I've just returned from my first run of 2010. I've been happily using the snow as an excuse not to run, but now I need to change that and get back into my running.