Sunday, February 22, 2015

MARCH ON

By now, most folks, in most areas of North America (except for Alaska where a record temperature of 44 degrees was recorded earlier this week) have had their fill of winter.

Eight weeks from tomorrow, the Boston Marathon will be run. And despite experiencing one of the worst winters on record, the race WILL be run.

At the 100th anniversary Boston Marathon in 1996, a massive snowstorm struck New England less than a week before the race. The snow melted quickly. Too quickly. Massive lakes formed, turning the athletes' village at Hopkinton, into a quagmire. Ever resourceful, the B.A.A. brought National Guard helicopters into the starting area. Their low-flying blades sucked up the moisture, enabling a record field of runners to enjoy their pre-race time in Hopkinton.

So, let's look forward, not backward. We may have some more winter weather to contend with, but this time next week we will be in the month of March. Will it, "Come in like a lion and go out like a lamb?" We don't know, but we do know that March brings us some bright spots.

On Sunday, March 8 most of the United States will spring forward into Daylight Savings Time. That means it won't get dark until around 7:00 p.m. in most parts. No longer will you be forced to speed home from work, quickly change into your running gear, and hope to return home before dark. Longer days, with more sunshine, bring warmer temperatures, and quicker snow melts.

Of course, on March 17, everybody becomes Irish, as we celebrate Saint Patrick's Day.

On the weekend before and the weekend after March 17, races will abound. There will leprechaun trots and shamrock runs. My favorite is a local race near Reading. Pennsylvania, conducted by race director extraordinaire, Ron Horn, called the "Hooligan Hustle."

Then, on March 20, we finally reach the vernal equinox, the first day of spring in the northern hemisphere. The sun is now half way on its journey to its farthest intrusion to the north. There will still be plenty of cool days to follow, but we will be well on our way to more pleasant weather.

Better times are on the way.

We just have to March on.

www.muldowneyrunning.com