So, I’ve only spent one week in the warm and serene temperatures of a Michigan April, but already I am spoiled and would now detest any sudden return to the weather, which persisted not even two weeks ago. However, as the sun finally warms the day I find that the quality of my runs has become spotty at best. That isn’t a shock for me though, not for this time of the year. That’s a typical event for me.

Those first few mornings when I walk outside and it is not bitterly cold or otherwise uninviting are some of my toughest runs ever. It has been over five months since I last ran in reasonably warm weather, and my body is currently still in its winter running mode. It isn’t accustomed to the thinner and lighter air of the spring (or indeed, any warm time), so after a few miles, I actually find myself stopping to stand still for a few moments.

It isn’t poor training, and I drink plenty of water (sometimes, a little too much); it is just a very interesting and not uncommon physiological reaction to sudden weather changes. Indeed, for one brief and uncharacteristic moment in that time when I am standing there, I almost yearn for the colder weather. It would solve the trouble of adjusting my breathing rhythm and it would cure the other and less desirable aspect of running; the mound of sweat. It actually isn’t so bad when it is freezing to you, but when you’re just dripping, you’re simply all wet.

I will use today as an example. Last Sunday, it was all of 34 degrees at the time I stepped out of my car to run, and of course, I had spent a few months living with that sort of weather, so it was just another run in freezing weather. Today, it was 72 at run time, so I stepped out of my car in my usual summer gear of a tank top and shorts, and I stretched for a while then began as I normally would.

It really did feel like there was a weight on me, thanks to the temperature and the fact that it was also rather muggy for an early April day around here. I plodded on at a pace considerably slower than what I would normally run, and this is simply because I knew that it was the time of the year where I needed to get myself used to mounds of sweat, dripping clothes and the thin, almost “Vulcan” (for those of you who can point out both the Star Trek episode and scene I refer to there, there is a hug waiting for you) air of Michigan’s warm months.

The only catch is that, at this time of the year, the weather situation is tenuous at best, and although I have not looked at the forecast yet today, I know that tomorrow could be another freezing day, although it would be one of the last if it was.

The weather is not consistently warm, and that only prolongs the time I will use to adjust to consistently warmer conditions. It usually is not until early May when the threat of freezing temperatures at any point in the day is more or less gone that I finally find a “warm” rhythm.

I will speak of the promise of April, but what that really means is that I get a preview of warm weather and nearly a month of uncertain running. I took a few minutes after I wrote that to look at the forecast, and I must say that it was very disappointing; the highs will apparently be only in the mid-50s. That’s tolerable, of course, but then there is a coolness to the air that will not be particularly helpful in my adjustment to the coming stickiness. Yes, that’s the other problem that running in this state in the warmth creates, particularly as it is warmth in a state surrounded by water; humidity.

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