It was about 50°F Wednesday night and raining pretty hard. I wanted to get out for a run right when I got home, before it got much worse, but it wasn't in the cards. Instead, I headed out in the dark around 7:30. Cold, dark, and soaking wet, outside wasn't really inviting, but for some reason I just needed to go run and blow off the stress of the week.
A lot of people take one look outside when it is rainy and say, "Screw that, that is totally not worth going out into, even with the proper coat and umbrella." Nothing sucks more than when you get to your destination soggy and grumpy, with your shirt sticking close to your unflattering body.
I have to admit, when you are out running with vibram shoes, and I suppose this is probably true for most sneakers, it really sucks when you miss-step and hit a puddle. The water rushed in and without socks or any real barrier, it was pretty cold. After the second time tough, it didn't matter. It was pretty fun, jumping around avoiding each puddle, completely distracted from the run.
Mark wrote an interesting post talking about how music is able to distract him from running. He brought up an excellent point that running to one playlist can become very repetitive, and soon your work outs will be effected by this. I completely agree with his points. I found myself calculating out the length of each song and figuring out my mileage without needing to look at my screen. I felt myself giving up or pushing forward based on my calculations. Over the past couple of days, this concept of needing to keep your mind busy has come up several times. Running in the rain, trail running at Thatcher Park, using a random shuffle of songs: these all keep it interesting and distract you from the task at hand. I imagine the ancient hunters didn't need much distraction, because they had to run to hunt and survive. I am sure that was all the distraction they needed.
So with that, I declare that needing an iPod in hand or a television on my treadmill to run is a big 'ole white person problem. But you know what, if it gets you through it, go for it. I won't be dropping my iPod any time soon if I am running down the street block after block with no thrill or challenge.