There's a saying back in the old country - "it's cold enough to freeze the balls off brass monkeys". That certainly applied to this morning's run as it was 16F (-9C) at the start (I know many of you in our more Northern climes are laughing at that, but hey, that's tundra-type weather for Texas).
If you know me, you know that I never run in anything but shorts and t-shirt. But this morning I did make the concession of wearing gloves. I'm sure everyone else who was bundled up in hats, coats, scarves etc thought I was crazy, but hey, that's what works for me. It was really cold for the first few miles - my fingers and toes were numb and my ears hurt - but after that I warmed up and the rest of the run was ok.
Except for my handheld water bottle which froze solid within two miles and never thawed out for the rest of the run!!! I'm kinda glad I gave Bandera a miss this year.
My parents are still here, but leave on Tuesday. Which means that Wednesday I start training properly for the Little Rock marathon. As a little extra incentive, I got an email this morning to confirm I've been seeded in corral B based on several of my 2009 marathon times.
I also need to ensure I'm in shape for pacing duties, as I've agreed to pace a buddy for the last 40 miles of Rocky Raccoon. He's in the same place I was last year, about to run his first 100 miler and his training is going really well. I'm honored to have the opportunity to help him cross the finish line, and I think he'll do great.
Pacing is something of a science - you have to know when to push your runner and when to pull back, when to leave them be, when to encourage and when to bully. The other requirement is the ability to talk and to stay positive, which I can certainly do - I have a ready supply of stories and anecdotes to keep us going.