Here in Ottawa the bike paths along the Rideau Canal are a quiet and scenic spot to run. I head there often during my runs because I live close to it. In the winter the canal becomes a nearly 8 km long skating rink.
While the paths along the canal are generally in good shape, running on the frozen canal is a bonus option during the winter. It is the option I chose for my long run yesterday.
My plan was for a 20 km run with the first 5 km being run at an easy pace and the remaining at a quicker pace. I made my way from home to the starting point pictured above with the majority of my run planned to be run along the canal.
Once the easy 5 km was finished I had no difficulty getting myself up to around my goal marathon pace of 4:30/km. My goal was then to stick as close to this pace as possible.
Since I was running along a frozen canal you might wonder what the footing was like. It was not bad at all. In fact, the hard packed snow along the edges proved to be a much better option than dodging the big puddles along the paths and sidewalks. Here is a look at the type of conditions I ran on…
Other than a couple of spots where it felt like I was running into the wind the conditions were great for my run. Before long I hit the end and it was time to turn around and head back towards home…
In the end I finished with 20 km in 1:35. It turns out I also timed my run well as the canal is closed as of tonight due to the recent warmer weather and sunny conditions.