Thursday, February 02, 2006
Three flights and a 4 hour car drive later I made it to Marquette. MI. I was there to visit five orthodontists. My company manufactures orthodontic products, braces to most people. I work in R&D and was sent out into the field to get feedback on a new adhesive that we plan on introducing. My wife teases me that this trip is my bosses way of getting me back for taking three weeks vacation for the India trip. Lucky for me they have been having a relatively mild winter. Friday was 50 but Sunday through Tuesday they were expecting daytime highs in the low 30's, with overnight lows in the 20's. Our first appointments weren't until after 9:00 each day, so I was really hoping to get in a run. I thought it would be cool (pun intended) to say that I had run in WI/MI in the winter. I had found an article that suggeste guidelines for dressing according to the temperature. 20 to 30 degrees called for two upper body layers, 1 lower body layer, a hat and gloves. Shorts were going to have to do for the lower body. I wasn't going to invest in tights for 2 days worth of cold weather running.
Monday morning I woke up at 6:00 and it was still dark outside. It had snowed overnight, but only a couple of inches. Our hotel was on a main highway, so I had pretty much given up the idea of running outside in Marquette. It wasn't going to be safe to run down the side of the road. At 7:00 it was still dark outside. Instead of missing the run all together I went to the hotel exerise room and ran on the treadmill. By the time I was finished it was finally a little more light outside. Part of the problem was the cloud cover, but part of the problem is that Marquette is on the very western edge of the Eastern Time Zone, so morning comes later there than say in New York City on the opposite edge of the same time zone. Back in Wisconsin, Central Time Zone, morning comes an hour earlier or seems to anyway.
In 2 1/2 years of running I had never run on a treadmill. I guess I had to have the experience, but I can say that I definitely didn't enjoy it. I felt like I was running about my normal pace but it took longer than normal to cover the miles on the treadmill. I had set the program for rolling hills, so the thing changed incline and speed every 5 minutes or so. That was sort of neat, but running inside you definitely heat up and at least for me it was pretty boring. Even watching TV, "Saved by the Bell", didn't help much. I think I really enjoy running outside because I either run a loop course or an out and back and I have to keep going until I get back. With the tread I felt like I could stop any old time, it was hard to keep going. I ran 3 miles according to the odometer and called it quits.
The doctor visits went well that day. I took my new camera and captured some images of the snow. The highlight for me was seeing my first ice fishing huts. Frankly I can't understand the allure. To me fishing is about the most boring thing on earth. Couple that with standing outside on a frozen lake and I can't possibly see the fun in it. But it is obviously quite the pasttime in Michigan and Wisconsin.