Today’s 5K was mostly a decision of where, as in “Where do I want to do this?” It was cold and windy, but not so cold that I couldn’t stand it for 40 minutes or so. I didn’t really want to make the drive to the gym, which in itself is almost a 5K. And I surely didn’t want to go to the mall at 5:30PM. So, I did my 5K in the neighborhood. Sweat pants, T-shirt, sweatshirt, socks, and running shoes; these are what I chose to wear. Once outside in the wind, I thought, “Oh, this was a mistake. I’ll go around the block, come back, pause my workout, put on a jacket and gloves, and then continue.”
Of course, I didn’t do that. I just pulled my sweatshirt sleeves over my hands and away I went. No real pain today. I did my ‘walk/jog’ thing again. To my surprise, I’m now able to jog longer, even in the cold and I think that at normal temperatures, I would do a bit better.
Melissa did her 5K at the mall, so I’m not going to go in-depth on her workout. She did it. No records broken. Mall.
Yesterday’s 5K was a little better than today’s by about two minutes. The cold makes a big difference. Personally, and I have no scientific proof nor have I done any research, I think that walking, jogging, or running when the temperature is lower makes you work harder. I feel that my breathing is more labored and it takes longer (duh) to warm up to a comfortable pace.
However, the colder temps do give you one thing that warmer ones don’t: the ability to prevent overheating. If your body starts to labor because of heat, you can remove a jacket, but when it’s hot outside, you can’t. You do have to stay just as hydrated though. Breathing in and out in winter’s drier air requires just as much water replacement as midsummer does.
Melissa wants me to share a bit of info with you about socks. Socks, to me, are the ugly stepchild of the workout world. People ignore the importance of good socks. Melissa wore a pair of socks a couple of days ago that had ‘thinned’ over time and she could feel her feet moving inside her shoes because of them. The problem with thin socks and movement inside your shoes, especially when your feet sweat, is that it’s easier to get painful blisters. The friction from that movement causes blistering. And we’ve all had blisters. Few of us want them again.
Wear good socks. Don’t buy the super cheap ones. Buy athletic/performance socks. Yes, they’re a little pricey. I’ve bought Melissa socks that cost $5 per pair (I’ll post the brand, once I find them) and I feel like they’re a bargain at any price. You can also prevent blisters by wearing shoes that fit properly and tying them tightly around your feet.
Blisters, muscles soreness, shin splints, back pain, overheating, and other injuries are not always preventable, but you can minimize their impact on your performance by wearing the right gear, preparing yourself, staying hydrated, and being aware of your body’s messages to you.