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Frozen 5K Lives Up to Its Name

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Word to the wise: When looking for a January road race in New England see if you can find one called the Warm and Balmy Winter 5K in the hopes that a warm spell will grace you at the starting line and the race will live up to its name.

For those brave runners who made their way to Quincy, Massachusetts this morning for the Frozen 5K, we can all attest to the fact that the race certainly lived up to its name. With race time temperatures just shy of zero and wind chills much colder than that it was a challenge, to say the least, to toe the starting line and head out on the course. Thankfully, the race was a 5K and would be over in a short period of time which was just about the only solace you could find when racing in such extreme cold.

Before making it a few hundred yards past the starting line, my fingers were frozen despite two pairs of gloves and the face covering proved to be a unique obstacle to normal breathing. When I took the face mask down half-way into the race, it then froze and breathing without it was even more of a challenge so the icicle covered mask went back on. Today was a day for layers, more layers and a few more layers but no matter how many shirts or pants you had on, it was freezing!

The course was an out and back run complete with some pretty nice climbing mixed into the course throughout. The course was free from snow and ice on the pavement and a coned off lane provided runners a path free from traffic. A huge amount of gratitude goes out to the Quincy Police Department who had the race course covered perfectly and the officers deserve a lot of praise for also braving the elements so us runners could race in such extreme cold.

Proceeds from the Frozen 5K Road Race benefit the YMCA’s Annual Campaign, helping to fund financial assistance to ensure Y membership, programs and services remain accessible to all.

I finished the Frozen 5K with a time of 25:16, good for 8:08/miles. Not a bad result for the tough running conditions! Once I thaw out completely I might start looking for some warm weather races just to begin to erase the chill of this morning’s run from my memory!

 

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Running Through Brrrrrockton

February 17, 2016 1 comment

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Nothing can be more challenging than the variability of winter time running in New England. The weather the past couple weeks has been rather fickle with some warm days mixed with some brutally chilling days. On Sunday, the arctic air swept into the New England area as I made my way over to Brockton, Massachusetts for the Paddy Kelly Road Race.

The Paddy Kelly is a 5 mile road race organized by the Colonial Road Runners that takes runners on a scenic run through DW Field Park. Due to the adverse conditions of -4 degrees at the starting line (that’s without the windchill), the race directors changed the course slightly to a 4.5 mile race. The race was part of the Grand Prix series for the Thirsty Irish Runners club but due to the rough, below-freezing temperatures no one had to meet their pace goals; just finish.

At the starting line there was a mixture of wanting to bolt into the course just to get it over with coupled with a feeling similar to how the Michelin tire man must feel given all the added layers of clothing not typical of going out for a run. Extra socks, two pairs of gloves, about five shirts. Needless to say, I was feeling bulky.But I was not alone as when the weather takes such a turn for the worse the important thing is to stay safe first and foremost.

I ran with Mrs. Running Griffin for the first mile to make sure neither of us would regret carrying on through the freezing temperatures and it was Valentine’s Day so what better way than celebrate than to run with your favorite running partner?

All runners that started the Paddy Kelly finished the race even with the sub-zero temperatures; a true testament to the hearty nature of New England runners for sure!