I went for a run outside today!! This was my first outdoor run in well over a month. Between the kids being home from school, the snow storms, the ice-covered roads, and the -30 temps over the last couple of months, my treadmill has become pretty much routine. I've still been running five days a week, but they've all been on the treadmill.
This morning, I saw that the roads were mostly clear, the temp was in the 20's, and I had 4.5 miles at an easy pace on the schedule... no reason not to run outside. I was so excited to get some fresh air and see if my legs could hold up when there isn't a belt spinning beneath my feet ;)
I had absolutely no expectations as far as my pace was concerned, because I really have no idea where my fitness is at right now. I hadn't run outside in so long, it was hard to tell! But I just figured I'd run at whatever pace felt comfortable in the moment.
It felt so nice to be outside! It was colder than I expected it to feel, probably because I'm so used to running inside right now, but it felt really good. There were a few patches of black ice, but other than that, I didn't have any issues with snow/ice/water/slush. I did an out-and-back route, my trusty favorite, and had a headwind on the way out; which meant a nice tailwind on the way back :)
The first mile or so, I felt a little clumsy and awkward, but the farther I ran, the more my legs loosened up. When I finished, I saw that I actually ran negative splits (getting faster each mile).
I felt SO GOOD when I was done with my run today. I really miss that feeling after running outside. The kids are going back to school tomorrow after their week of winter break, and I am really hoping that I can get back into my regular routine. This winter has sucked so badly, and I'm just ready to get back to normal.
When I got home, I'm not sure what gave me the idea to drive the cats crazy, but I looked up a video on YouTube of cats meowing. Phoebe likes to watch TV, and when I played the video, she was SO into it. Jerry and I were cracking up watching her swat at the TV, so we were playing videos of cats, birds, squirrels, goats, and some other animals. Chandler, Estelle, and Phoebe loved it!
When we came across a video compilation of "screaming goats", I nearly peed myself from laughing so hard. If you haven't seen/heard them, you've got to watch a couple of the YouTube videos. They were so funny! I had no idea how human-like goats can sound.
This afternoon, Jerry had the idea to go to the Gibraltar Trade Center. If you're from southeast Michigan, then you probably know what that is; if not, it's basically like a big indoor flea market. We never, ever go there, because a lot of the people there are, well, how do I put it? The perfect example: right when we walked in today, this guy in his 20's was walking with his girlfriend/wife, and said, "It's so much easier coming here without the kids. Easy as tits!" So classy ;)
Anyway, we walked around there for a little bit, which ended up being pretty pointless. The place was exactly like I remembered. There was one thing that the boys did that they thought was so fun, though. There was a large shallow pool filled with water, and enormous beach balls with a zipper on the side. They climbed in through the zipper, and then it was filled with air and zipped up, and they got to "run" around the pool like hamsters in balls.
The kids stayed completely dry, and had a blast running into each other.
The Trade Center was pretty close to the nursing home where Mark is staying, so we decided to stop by and see him. We got him a coffee on the way, and there were some girls selling Girl Scout cookies. Mark mentioned that he likes the Samoas, so I bought a box of those for him, too.
When we were walking down the hall toward his room at the nursing home, I saw that he was out in the hallway, pushing himself in his wheelchair. I was so happy to see him doing that, and getting out of his room! He was really excited to see us. We stayed for about an hour to chat with him, and then we headed home.
It's been a busy day, but fun. I'm still flying high from my outdoor run this morning :)