Another type of running

It snowed in Paris! Can you believe it?! It started on Monday and by Wednesday there was a thick layer of white on top of everything. It was spectacular to look at, but also a bit chaotic. Trains were delayed or cancelled, people were stuck at home and my French class was cancelled because the teacher couldn’t get to school. However it did give me a new experience: running in the snow!

Coming from Australia, I haven’t had many opportunities to run in the snow. Even while living in London it never properly snowed, not to the extent that I’ve experienced this week. I feel like I’ve been through a whole range of emotions about it over the past few days, and now that the sun is out & the snow is starting to melt, I feel it’s a good time to reflect on what I’ve learned.

It started snowing while I was out running on Monday. At first it was gentle, and I barely noticed it wasn’t rain, but soon it was absolutely everywhere. As I ran along it was coming directly into my face which wasn’t pleasant, but soon I found a childish wonder at the situation. (It also made me feel like a badass). The great thing was that the snow wasn’t staying around on the ground for long, so there wasn’t any concern about slipping or falling over. It was sufficient to run in ordinary shoes, but I was glad I had thought to wear a third layer on top (tshirt, long-sleeve and a jacket) to stay warm.
Lesson learned: Snow can be fun, but it would probably help to wear sunglasses and a buff to keep it out of your eyes & mouth.

Day two, Tuesday. Not only was it still snowing from above, but the snow was starting to pile up on the ground – and becoming slush in thoroughfare places. Adidas Runners was cancelled for safety reasons, which rocked me a little. I somehow couldn’t face snow from above and below, that felt like a bit much. Plus, because my run was in the evening, it would have been even colder than during the day, and dark. Basically, I wimped out on running outside and chose to do a treadmill session instead, which was not much better.
Lesson learned: Even if the snow is wet, cold and unknown, it’s still preferable to being bored and overheated on a treadmill.

Woke up on Wednesday to a world of white. I had promised my Swedish friend Casja (for whom snow running is the norm) that I would give running in the snow a proper try, and I couldn’t let her down. I donned my trail shoes and took my camera, ready to snap lots of ‘snow selfies’ as proof I was actually running. The ground was quite icy in sections but I found that it was much easier to run on the powdery snow, even if you have to lift your feet higher. The snow essentially turned road-running into a (flat) trail-run which I quite enjoyed! Plus I got a few ‘bravo!’ and ‘allez!’ shouted at me as I ran along, which was cool.
Lesson learned: Wear appropriate gear and anything is possible. And if you need motivation, there is always someone who has it worse than you.

Do you enjoy running in the snow?

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