This time, though, I committed to not running. I sketched up my workout routine through the end of April as follows:
* First few days of January: Total rest.
* Weeks of Jan. 5 and Jan. 12: Moderate cross-training (biking, "Just Dance," yoga, walking).
* Week of Jan. 19: Mostly cross-training, but add a two-mile run.
* Week of Jan. 26: Two short runs, plus cross-training.
* Weeks of Feb. 2 and 9: Three runs a week.
* Week of Feb. 16: Vacation and recovery.
* Week of Feb. 23: Time to train for the Friendly Sons of St. Patrick 5K, on March 29, and the Hy-Vee Half Marathon, on April 26. (Yes, I know I declared myself done with all spring half-marathons and this one in particular, but that's a post for another day.)
I designed this to achieve three goals: avoid spring-race-signup-overexcitement, which results in me getting tired of running long before said races; accommodate a nearly weeklong vacation; and acknowledge that Midwest winters can be beastly.
I'm confident that goals one and two — the one I can actually control — are in the books. As for the third one ... well, it turned out there wasn't much horrible weather in January to avoid. (It's here now! Just like the multiple-run weeks on my schedule!)
Let me be clear: I am NOT complaining about mild temperatures and dry skies. I'm just a little sad that my moment of clarity on winter workout planning came a year too late.
At least I'll have that spreadsheet ready for all the miserable Januaries to come.