Sunday, March 27, 2011

The Frozen Ponytail Run

It was 28 degrees on Saturday. It was snowing and crazy windy. Not the best of conditions.

My daughter had a friend sleeping over and I had promised to take them shopping at the mall. But I was determined to get my miles in. I made them some blueberry muffins to eat in my absence, left a note, and headed to the trail.

The beauty of running the trail is that the out and back route makes it so I only have to force myself to do 3.5 miles. Then I have no other choice than to finish all seven. Had I had the choice at mile 4, mile 5, or mile 6 to turn home - I just may have taken it.

A little after mile two, I realized my butt and thighs had frozen solid. The rest of me was just fine. So I had two theories. Either,
  1. All that 60% of water we're supposed to be made up of was residing solely in my butt and thighs, hence the blocks of ice I was toting around.
  2. Fat freezes faster than muscle.
I'm not sure. But strap on a big ol' block of ice to each of your thighs and to each of your butt cheeks and this will give you a pretty good idea of how I felt around mile two. I picked up the pace just to try to thaw out my poor gluteus maximus. That must've worked. Or I just went numb. Because I didn't feel the pain after that.

Once I pushed through the initial butt-freeze I felt pretty strong. I was running more than walking and just trying to get to that 3.5 mile marker. Then I realized that 7 miles was the longest I had done on this particular trail. The longest run on this trail to date was 6 miles. So I got a little further into the trail and it was beautiful! It was a little more wooded than the first three miles. The path was less worn and less sloppy. Apparently, only the cool runners make it this far. So I did a little Sound of Music, open-armed turn-around and caught some snowflakes on my tongue. If they ever make a movie about me it will make a nice scene and give the composers a chance to write some pretty music.

The joy of my turnaround was short-lived when I realized I had to repeat those miles. The wind was picking up and I was ready for a cup of coffee. But those fourth and fifth miles totally flew by.

The last mile seemed longer than normal. But I felt such a sense of accomplishment when I finally reached my car. I took off my Bondi Band, which was doing a nice job of keeping my ears warm, and felt something hard in my hair. Then I realized it was my hair! My ponytail had totally froze during my two hours of quality time outside. I also realized I hadn't seen one other person the entire time I was on the trail. Either I was the only one stupid enough to be out there, or, as Lucy would say, I was just a total badass.

Oh yea...and then we went shopping. For SIX hours. I should so get extra credit for that!


  1. Total badass. My ponytail hasn't frozen since grade school when I used to wait for the bus with wet hair! LOL!!!!

  2. Great post!

    While your run is quite impressive, I think your true badassedness shows itself by you spending six hours shopping. That's my definition of hell.

  3. 28 degree would definitely have me INSIDE on a freakin' treadmill~ Hats off to you Kelly!

  4. Lesley - That is funny! I remember mornings like that. The whole way home from this run I was feeling my ponytail cuz it felt so weird. But I didn't want to thaw it out either cuz I wanted to prove to my kids that it really froze. I know. Pathetic. And you know what? Neither one of them thought it was that cool!

    Nora - Usually I love me some shopping. But shopping with two 13 year old girls after a run like that was no cake walk. Plus they didn't really want me there. But, I am much too protective to let them wander too far without me. Sure, I was good with warming up a bench or two from time to time, but I still had to keep up. But all the giggling and the multiple stops at Claire's had me wanting to cry!

    Lisa - Thanks! I've been pretty wimpy this winter. I was just feeling good that day. I think I can handle the cold a little better than the heat that you run in though!

  5. Frozen Hair! That's crazy!! And totally bad-ass for sure!!

    Your trail sounds so cool to run on. Better than my boring bike path that I can pretty much run with my eyes shut by now.