Strong winter makes training for Grandma's Marathon challenging

By KBJR News 1

March 7, 2014 Updated Mar 7, 2014 at 9:49 PM CST

Duluth, MN (NNCNOW.com) --- Grandma's Marathon is just a few months away and this year's weather has made training a little more difficult for those looking to conquer the 26 or 13 mile courses.

If you're a runner, this winter has been a tough one.

"Brutal, brutal, I've ran every day from December 1st to January 15th outside, so it was tough running." Said Bill Koski, who is training for Grandma's Marathon.

This winter was so intense it forced him inside to the treadmill for a little while, but now he's back on the snowy streets and sidewalks.

"I stay on the roads as much as I can, but we've been running on the snowmobile trails a lot too, now they're getting a little too slippery." Said Koski.

And to best deal with the slippery paths, running experts advise having proper footwear.

"There's trail shoes or shoes with more aggressive tread. There's different companies that make certain things that you can put on the bottom of your shoe as extra protection almost like a cleat." Said Tortoise and Hare shoe expert and personal trainer, Raymond Zylka.

Different running shops around the Northland can not only set you up with proper footwear, but also gear to keep warm.
If you're wondering whether or not to step off the treadmill, many running experts acknowledge the safety of treadmills, but say there are other options that are not only accessible, but will inspire you to keep going.

"We run on the lake walk all the time so we get to see the lake and it's pretty amazing sometimes with the sunrises and sunsets and ice formations on the lake and that's one thing that you definitely miss on a treadmill." Said Duluth Running Company General Manager, Tony Stensland.

If you haven't started your training yet because of the harsh winter, you're likely not alone and it's not too late. Like with many things, it's good to start small and try your best not to miss a workout.

Expert runners are saying that even if you don't have time to get outside for a long run, it's still beneficial to get in the short runs to be consistent.

"When you do a run like that, once you finish, you never regret going out. The hard part is getting out the door, but once you come back in the door, you're always pleased that you did." Said Stensland.

And in the end, you'll be more pleased with how far your training takes you in the big race.

Grandma's Marathon is set to take place on June 21st. Still plenty of time to get some miles in.