I got an email yesterday from a friend who's also a runner. Because of my very lengthy running career, she'd thought I might be able to help with her dilemma.
Her problem? An extreme reaction to cold in certain sensitive areas. Or, put less delicately, nipples that felt like they were going to snap off.
I've had ears that ached because of the cold. And an endlessly running nose. And even sore knees. But never that particular problem. Or maybe I've had the problem and forgotten about it. Because dementia. And because it's been a fair few years since we've had a cold winter.
My first thought was to find a man with good peripheral circulation and fairly long arms to come along for the run with her. The only downside I could see to this solution was the potential for tripping. It was a lot more fun than the ever-practical wind-proof vest - just not sure where you source a warm-handed, long-armed man who likes to run and cup breasts and not get distracted while he's running and cupping breasts.
A little research was in order.
The internet is full of the weird and wonderful. Take, for example, The WineRack. "Better than a boob job and cheaper too." It holds 750ml of fluid in a polyurethane bladder. Fill 'er up with something warm and you could keep those headlights from being on high beam. Plus you'd never have to go thirsty.
But my favourite solution came from our neighbours, the Kiwis. Those New Zealanders are very creative when it comes to making a buck without having to invest too much in materials. When we holidayed there we noticed quite a lot of animals that couldn't out-run cars. There was road-kill everywhere. Some ingenious person decided that it'd be great to scrape up that road-kill and turn it into something practical - like nipple warmers. Because who wouldn't want the skin of a squashed, dead animal nestled against their flesh?