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New York 20-Miler

Reporting to you from the first class seat of Fung Wah bus (a cheap bus that travels from Chinatown NYC to Chinatown Boston).

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Sadly flights were only cheap going to NYC but coming back I had to settle for good old Chinatown bus service. Perks include no advance ticket purchase required with always a bus available within an hour. Perfect for those lazy family Sundays where you go with the flow. Other perks include a luxury rest stop at a McDonalds where I get to fulfill my monthly fast food requirement. Plus I’m a slight addict to their Mixed Berry smoothie. It can be quite refreshing on those hot packed and full of yelping babies bus rides.

This weekend aside from family time, I forced in a 20 miler. I left my parents’ house at 8:30 AM; earliest I ever left for a run yet. I think it helps that NYC is 12 degrees warmer than Boston. I was planning on having a great tempo run at an average 8 minute pace; however, that did not happen for a mixed amount of reasons. My average pace ended up being 8:45, but it was still a great run. It reminded me of why I love Brooklyn and the diversity of New Yorkers.

Mile 1 was ran through the streets of my parents’ neighborhood before I reached my running path. I think it’s official name might be Shore Parkway but I’ve known it as Caesar’s Bay. The first mile wasn’t fun. Every intersection had a light and angry drivers even at 8:30 on a Saturday morning. I breathed a sigh of relief when I made it to the running trail without getting run over by a car or an old Asian man on a bicycle on the sidewalk.

Mile 2-5.5 sucked. My sigh of relief was quickly interrupted with a slap across my face by the wind. I thought I faced some windy days on my Boston runs. However the wind of my woody runs are nothing compared to running along the shore of the Atlantic ocean. Every second felt like my face was getting beaten. I contemplated going back to the sidewalks of Brooklyn, but I wanted to finish my 20 miles sometime before the sun set and the stop lights and cars would have made that difficult.

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Luckily as I ran along in my fight against the wind I had a few things to keep me company. For one these school of duckies. Another was the image of the Verrazano Bridge. I have lived near this bridge for 10 years. I ran this path probably a total of 3 times (and only more recently since I started this running addiction). However I have walked it hundreds of times; some summers it was a daily ritual with friends, family or boyfriends and dates. I grew up with this path and being on it is always a sentimental moment. I learned how to rollerblade here, ride a bike and even had my first kiss here.

Before I knew it, I was at the end of the trail. okay that’s a lie the wind was making me very aware of each minute I spent running. I checked RunKeeper and saw I only had 5.28 miles down. Blast! 15 to go, this was going to take forever! My mind recoiled.

I took a moment or two at the pier and waved to Manhattan.

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Mile 6-8 flew by! I had turned around and was no longer going against the wind. I picked up speed going at a sub 8 minute pace. I decided to stop at halfway point and instead of going all the way to the start and doing two big loops I broke them up.

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Mile 9-11 was once again against the wind. I ran this way because had I ran all the way to the start I don’t know if I could have mental strength to convince myself to do another straight 5 miles against the wind.

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Mile 12-13 were again fast miles as I ran back towards under the bridge.

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Mile 14-16 were also fast miles heading towards the beginning of my trail. It was past 10am by now and fellow Brooklynites were joining me. You had your regular athletic young adults, the older less fit joggers with their water belts and a few things I don’t see in Boston. I love how so many types of people share and coexist. You have your older Russian and Italian men in their bright windbreaker track suits running along with the slow old Asian ladies and their tai chi and random others just doing their workout without a care of what it looks like.

As I stood at the start of my trail at mile 16 part of me wanted to call it good enough and head home however the more stubborn part reminded me I only had 4 miles left. That’s 3 on the trail and 1 on the streets. The OCD part agreed and so I ran back out for 1.5 miles taking some more face slapping and to wrap it up back home. As I ran through my childhood neighborhood for my last mile I appreciated each street light for an excuse for me to stop every other minute.

How did your run go this weekend?

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I’m currently in NYC visiting my parents for my Dad’s birthday and Passover.
Me and my brother hoarded our pennies and got my father an IPad3. We figured he earned it for living half a century.

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But worry not I spent majority of the day treating myself. After my regular 3 cups of peanut butter oatmeal I decided I can do longer say no to the cinnamon swirl in the cafeteria; because I’m worth it.

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Lunch were free work sandwiches from Roast Beast. Fridays are awesome!

I got a lunch run in. 6 miles at incline 2 with moderate effort. I decided to not try to hard because I was planning a 20 miler while I’m in Brooklyn (recap later but I love running in NY. The run was everything I love about New Yorkers).

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I didn’t have good Friday off but the office did close at 3pm so it’s better than nothing. I took a 6pm flight out of Boston and by 7:10 was in JFK.

Once I got to my parents house I dug through their leftovers for food. Travels makes me hungry even if I’m just sitting.

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Piroshki! Cabbage and meat!

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Pickles a requirement.

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Wrap up with some zucchini mushroom potato pancakes.

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Always room for desert of some matzo raisin dried fruit and nut concoction. Yes I’m a master at eating my own weight in one meal.

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Wrapping up with some cuddle from Rocky and Tony

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Malden 10K

Twas a brisk chilly midday.  10K crossed the finish line at some time around 43 minutes I think.  Waiting for official results!

Also, aside from being busy at work, I cut my run to just 10K because we’re home-buying! We did our inspection today and it was a bit frightening.

Anyone know of any good Victorian home renovation blogs/books etc. =)

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Please note this was written Friday March 16th at the airport but not posted until days later due to Internet

First I would like to brag how I made it to the airport from my house in 11 minutes, through TSA in 12 and to the gate in 6 for a total from house to plane in under 30 minutes! I guess this is one perk to early flights. Early wake up not so much…. Yes it was only 5:55 alarm and it was rough. I blame the boyfriend! Back in my single lady living in the city days I used to wake up at 5am, run, and be at work at 7am…. What happened to me… I guess chasing the cat around the house until midnight doesn’t help 😉

Or things like this:

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Best part of travel is my excuse to support evil caffeine pushing entities 😉

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I’m going to share a possibly unethical secret. Recently I noticed that Starbucks starting charging like 69 cents for soy milk New England and NYC ( for real how dare they). I think the surcharge is waved if you have one of those Starbucks frequency or membership cards. You could do that but I’m one of those mess in a purse people so the last thing I need is another card to carry and lose. However, if you ask for soy milk after they hand you the coffee they rarely charge you after you already paid. Personally I think it should be out with the regular dairy milk. I think it’s fair enough when I’m already paying 3 bucks for my ice coffee 🙂

Running recap Wednesday & Thursday
Wednesday 6 miles – incline 3 – 52 min 55 seconds – 6.8 average pace

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Thursday 7.5 miles – incline 2 – approx 62 min – 7.2 average pace

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I stopped the treadmill at 7 miles but decided that since this is my last run before The Marathon I should probably cool down.

I did a final foam roll

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And finalized my decision that I’m going to race this Saturday, not just train tempo but race. Work has been getting busy and won’t improve much until the tax deadline. I’m at the peak of my training and taking a week off from training won’t ruin my ability to run Boston. I won’t have much time for more than an hour run except for weekends in the next few weeks. Since I’m at the peak of my training, I might as well make the best of it.

My ultimate goal is of course for a BQ (quite lofty for a first marathon) but my official goal is to finish. During my training runs I got down to an 8:10 pace on flat surface. I know I have the ability now to get it down to 8 minute mile. I went from 9 minute pace on long runs to 8:10 on my best run to date (I was a bit sore for a few days). However I know that most likely DC won’t be a BQ for a few reasons.

1. It’s going to be 75 degrees and all my long runs have been in 45 degree weather. My water needs will obviously be much greater as I’m used to running with no water break until mile 18 or so.
2. I’m traveling and my schedule is disrupted.
3. I am not tapering… Completely and I plan on being a tourist and waking around the day before the race
4. The course is hilly for the first 13 miles and the turns seem a bit confusing when I looked at the course map

Sometimes just knowing that something is in my future is enough so instead I’ve come up with a few more reasonable goals.

1. First goal is to have fun
2. Stay hydrated and wear sunblock ( I guess this is more of a reminder)
3. Try to give each band on the course at least a small listen ( I’ll have my music/podcasts on me; but it is a Rock and Roll marathon after all)
4. Finish under 4 hours ( I need a time goal)
5. Visit the panda at the zoo (okay not a marathon goal but a DC goal)

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Packing for DC!

I’ve been internetless while traveling so I’m back tracking on updates. This was written March 15th, Thursday

My computer is currently being upgraded and reformatted by an (awesome) friend so I’m now typing on an iPad vs. my ghetto 5 year old laptop on 1 gig of ram. Good part is
iPad works much faster. Bad part is my typos have increased to an even higher level. I really am world’s worst typer.

So packing for DC I made a list edited more than twice

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Things I ended up taking
1 Two technical T-shirts
2. Two cotton tank tops which I might actually run in because even if sweaty wet they feel lighter than the tech shirts
3. One running skirt
4. One running shorts
5. One sexy dress for going out Saturday
6. One pair of casual shorts
7. One pair of Asics
8. Three sports bras
9. Fours pairs of socks, just in case
10 Four pairs of undies
11. Imodium to take pre-run just in case
12. Snacks because I’m always hungry
13. Hair straightener and leave in conditioner
14. Bikini incase of pool
15. Day purse
16. Flip flops
17. Compression socks for flying

Things I removed
1. More food I didn’t need
2. Shampoo body wash etc. Westin’s supply is good enough as long as I have my leave in
3. Heels – no desire to torture feet that way
4. Plastic bottle for protein mixes
5. More clothes I didn’t need

I guess in the end I packed more than I would have for a normal weekend get away but everything fit into a duffle bag or I was wearing so packing success in my mind.

Are you a light packer? What must you always bring? For me it’s food, leave in conditioner and hair straightener.

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I can’t make a full update from DC due to being too cheap and lazy to pay for wifi but DC marathon great success. I won’t say my official time yet but I’ll admit it was a BQ! I am still in shock. DC horrid rolling hills you got nothing on Treadmill incline training even if they were rough down to mile 25 hill.

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Per Twitter –

Happy Leap Day! In honor of February 29th, for the next 2 hours and 9 minutes, enjoy $29 off Rock ‘n’ Roll events! Use online code LEAP before 10:09 am (PST) and spread the word! (Excludes relays, Las Vegas, New York, kids races and European events.) http://runrocknroll.competitor.com/

 

Yup, I somehow signed up for the Montreal Oasis Marathon.  My boyfriend will kill me.  Might need to find alternate ways of getting to Montreal from Boston.  Suggestions?

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