Naas was all a-snow today and despite what my training plan had scheduled for the day, by 5pm I had all but decided, as I looked out the window at the blizzard of seemingly giant white snow flakes that my 5 mile run could be postponed to another day. Normally, I do not as a rule postpone runs (or not do them at all) simply for the fact that if I don’t go when I’m supposed to go, it drives me crazy for the rest of the day (and night) so even if the weather is shocking and I’m forced to take it a bit handier than intended, I still prefer to get out and get it done. Call it peace of mind. But today, it simply wasn’t an option and rather than risking slipping and seriously injuring myself, I decided it simply wouldn’t be worth it. 5 miles could wait.
Enter opportunity. Feeling all cozy and snug inside with the snow whirling around outside the window and cup of coffee in hand, I’d resigned myself to the idea of chilling out for the evening. Mother comes in from work, a bundle of nerves and anxiety, wound up like a coil from driving home from work in the snow and tables the idea of a trip to the pool. It’s great at moments like these when you have someone else to encourage you to do something and to do it with you. It takes effort to find the will to go back outside into the snowy, dark evening after having had a long, hard day at work and then battled the winter elements for 2 hours to do anything, let alone a spot of exercise. Kudos to the Mama. I was inspired and couldn’t let her go on her own. Kit assembled, or so I thought, we descended on the local swimming pool and I managed to bash out 2.1km (or 84 lengths of the 25m pool), which I was chuffed with in the end, especially given that I forgot to pack my goggles on my dresser as I was hurriedly packing my gear bag. Sauna, steam room and a shower, I felt completely renewed and happily headed back out into the snowy evening.
Cross-training is great for runners but often finding the time amid a busy weekly training schedule can be hard when you also have to factor in time taken up by those other small parts of your life like job, family, friends. Thus, it’s great when opportunity presents itself and it would simply be a shame (and rather a complete waste) to not seize it, swim with it and put it in the training bank. Snow doesn’t have to be a disaster to your training schedule. As the saying goes, where some see disaster, others see opportunity. Use yours wisely. (…And then you can build a snowman afterwards)