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Week 6 Recap

Are we really six weeks in? And according to my very scientific calculations, that also means we are twelve weeks out, or a third into training. Is this really gonna happen?

This lady came in second (for women). I was too incompetent to take a decent photo of the winner (unless you count her shoe).

Last weekend Adam and I attended the NYC Ironman Championships. Just as spectators of course! Since it was the easiest to get to we decided to wait until the afternoon to catch the last stretch of the running portion, which is also the last leg of the race. I would have loved to see some of the swimming leg (if that was even possible), but it was on the New Jersey side of the Hudson River and it started at 7AM. [Also–we found out later in the day someone was pulled from the river and had died. Very, very, very sad.]

On Saturday I woke up, went on my long(ish) run, ate a late breakfast (which most definitely included ice coffee and a breakfast treat), watched a little Olympics, did some shopping on Bedford, and then gradually made our way up to the Upper West side where the finish line was. So basically, as I was having a leisurely morning all of these people were either swimming 2.4 miles in a freakin’ river, biking 112 miles, or starting a marathon length run. Yeah, there goes all sense of accomplishment after my 9-miler that morning. We tried to time it so we could see some of the early finishers (we missed the first male finishers), but we did see all of the female winners.

While most of the people we saw finish were probably elite triathletes (like people who do this for a living), it was still pretty darn inspiring. If I lived closer by I would have come back around 11PM, which is the final hour the race is open. Prob would have needed a box of tissues. Though those were needed for the next day when we watched the Fred LeBow documentary Run For Your Life, and I can’t forget all of the tears during the Olympics. I am a slobbering mess.

It got me thinking a little about ever wanting to do a triathlon. Ironman–no. But a much shorter length of a triathlon or duathlon, maybe. Though, this is all talk, as I am severely out of practice when it comes to swimming. After being obsessed with Olympic swimming, I went out and bought a cap and goggles, but they’ve already moved from being prominently displayed on my kitchen table, to a side tablet, and now my dresser drawer housing all of my extra running accessories. But it’s something to think about for the future. I think right now, I just need to focus on tackling this marathon. 🙂

Anyways, onto the training. Last week was a step back week–meaning a shorter long run, so I took advantage of this to do some extra cross training since 1) I was feeling up to it and 2) the following week (errr now this week), my weekday mileage was being bumped up, and my long run was going up to 14.

Monday: You know I love my Monday rest days. It’s usually the one day of the week I won’t feel guilty about not working out. Now if only there was better TV on at night…

Tuesday: 3 Miles + Chisel
I felt really good this particular morning, and it was my last week of Tues/Thurs 3 milers, so I was hoping to make this one a quick paced run. Plus, I hadn’t really been incorporating too much speed work into my runs like I said I would. It was hot out, but I felt like I was running somewhat fast, definitely not 5k fast, but somewhere between 10k pace and half-marathon pace and was pretty winded after, but my watch read otherwise. I trust my watch about 75% of the time, so it’s hard to know if I was actually running faster then it recorded, or if it just felt that way.

Running in the heat has proved to be both a physical and mental challenge in a number of ways. There are the obvious physical reasons, where as it’s been tough to maintain the same stamina and speed, and due to that, the little moments of triumph I would feel after seeing my split times post-run, have been few and far between. But at this point I have found other ways in my runs to achieve that feeling. Also, I realize at my level of marathon training, speed should not be my main concern.

Wednesday: 6 Miles
Hot. Humid. Gross.

On these days (and somewhat longer runs), my clothes are completely soaked, and instead of just letting them hang to dry, I’ve started getting into the shower with all my clothes on afterwards. I’m not even sure if I’m helping to cleanse them all that much, but it makes me feel not quite so disgusting.

Thursday: 3 Miles + Another Chisel
You’d think after all these ‘Chisel’ classes I’d be super chiseled. But I’m not. Too many desserts….I love desserts…

Friday: Hot Pilates
Saturday: 9 Miles 30-45 seconds slower than race pace

Ugly map.


Like I mentioned, today’s long run was a step back, so it was only a 9-Miler. Yes, “only”. It was a good run and it went by somewhat quickly. Due to last week’s 12-mile dehydration hang over, I made sure I drank extra water the night before. Since I was running alone again, I decided to stick to a familiar route, starting in Williamsburg, down Kent and then over the Williamsburg Bridge and down towards the Seaport and back. It’s no secret I loathe running over the WB bridge, but I have to admit, I probably need the challenge of the inclines, since I’m not really doing any “hill work” elsewhere.

So, while it was warm and humid, and if the previous week was my sweatiest run ever, this was probably my second sweatiest, I did not get the run hang over. I’m guessing it’s thanks to the extra hydrating the night before, so I need to remember that moving forward.

Not so great at pacing today.

Sunday Spin + Abs
I wasn’t too worn out from my long run, and I figured I wouldn’t get to do Spin for a few weeks, so I went for it. Plus, I’d get Monday off!

And that was my week 6! I’m off to California after my 14-miler this weekend. Perhaps I can try to write my next recap on the plane. I’d feel so cool. True blogger over here.

xo.

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Chef in training! Week 4 Recap

It’s no secret I’m no master chef (or any kinda chef for that matter), but ever since training started I’ve been trying to experiment with pasta dishes so that I can find the ultimate recipe for success come race day. I’ve tried a few variations of this very simple recipe that I found off Runner’s World, and I’m liking it. It’s basically just pasta, asparagus, shiitake mushrooms, garlic, and a little bit of extra virgin olive oil, sprinkled with parmesan cheese. The few modifications I have made is that I do not include lemon zest and use about half of the oil suggested. This last batch I also added a little bit of chopped up onions since I had some leftover from the other day.

Saturday night dinner for the next 15 weeks? Note: I ate WAY more pasta than is shown on this plate


I also included turkey meatballs from Trader Joe’s. I realize they don’t look too appetizing in the photo, but they were a good addition to the pasta. Like I said, I’m no cook, and I don’t really enjoy handling meat (haha-stupid), so I didn’t mind having a little help from Trader Joe’s.

This was my Saturday night pre-long-run dinner. Verdict? It sat well in my stomach that night and the following morning. So, this could be a contender.

And this is how week four of training went:

Monday: Rest Day
Tuesday: 3 Mile run + 45 min of strengthening
Wednesday: 6 Mile run at marathon race pace
Horrible, horrible run. The weather was actually decent (or as decent as a NY summer can be) but I felt low on energy, sluggish, and very slow. Trying to run and hold a 9-9:15 minute pace felt as difficult as running a sub-8:00 pace for this length. I could shrug it off as it just being one of those days (which I think it partly was), or I could acknowledge a few possible red-flags. First, I probably did too much strengthening work the previous evening. I think strengthening is important, but I either have to figure out a better day to do it, or go easier, especially since Wednesdays will always be my second longish run day. Second, I only ate a banana before my run. I have a difficult time waking up an entire hour before running in the morning (before work) to eat a decent breakfast, so I usually skimp out before my weekday runs. For the most part it’s been fine for my shorter runs, but anything over 5 and its starting to effect my energy levels. So…I must figure out a better plan for eating.
Thursday: 3 Mile run on the treadmill + Yoga
Whereas yesterday’s 9:00ish pace was rough, I was fine running around the 7:40-7:50 mark on the treadmill. Granted it was only 3 miles, but I still felt significantly better the entire run. Maybe I’m not getting slower after all!
Friday: 45 min strengthening
Saturday: Rest
I battled with myself over going to spin in the morning, and in the end, decided to sleep in and take it easy while catching some of the Olympics, and I’m glad I did.
Sunday: 11-Miler at around 45-60 seconds slower than marathon race pace

I actually finished at McCarren park. My Nike+ Sportwatch was .35 of a mile behind Adam’s Garmin so I kept going just so I could get that 11-Miles. Sad.


Most of this run felt good! I didn’t have too many issues with energy levels or body soreness. I was a little sluggish right out of the gate (but I usually am), and I started to get a little bit of knee pain around 8-9 miles but it subsided after a mile or so. Also, the weather was decent in comparison to week’s past.

We started on Metropolitan heading out towards the waterfront, down Kent and then Flushing Ave towards Dumbo. This time we went across the Brooklyn Bridge into Manhattan, and then back into Brooklyn via the Manhattan Bridge, since the run was a few miles longer. Running across the Brooklyn Bridge was a bit like that Gecko (I mean Geico) commercial and we had to run through the Financial District/Chinatown to get back onto the Manhattan Bridge. I’m sure if we run this path a few more times we’ll get the hang of it and maybe the Hulk in me won’t come out.

For the most part, our splits were essentially on target, maybe even a little bit too fast on some miles. Right now I’m aiming at about a 9:00 marathon race pace, so for the longer runs, I should be running anywhere from 9’30-10’00 miles (maybe even slower, but that seems like a stretch right now). I’m guessing the slower 10’00 miles were around when we were dropped in Chinatown and there was some stop and go but I’m not sure WTH happened during that 10’53 mile. There were a bunch of stop-and-go moments while we were trying to figure out how to get onto the Brooklyn Bridge (oops, ran out of sidewalk and into the freeway on-ramp! oops, dead end!) but I didn’t think it was that much.

11-Miler on July 29th

Like I mentioned, I felt pretty decent during the run, but I was soooo spent afterwards. I felt like I just ran a Marathon! Not that I know what it would feel like after running 26.2 miles, but I was SO exhausted and started to freak out about what running a whole 15.2 miles more might feel like. What did I get myself into???!

xo.

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Week 2 Recap

Well I’m still not at 2 posts per week. But I’m trying to get better at this!

I’m now in week three of training and it’s been going pretty well…besides the heat. Never has the weather made such a difference in my day to day life before! How I miss the winter days when I’d be shivering in my damp clothes (uh…from sweat of course) after I had cooled down from a longish run. Actually, maybe I don’t miss those days. And I say longish, because once I get into the 15-20 mile run territory, my measely 10 milers I used to dread during half-training will probably seem like a walk in the park.

With the heat also comes lots of sweat and lots of sunscreen, which without fail, runs into my eyes every time and burns like hell. Every sunscreen I’ve bought claims to be sweat proof and “won’t run into your eyes”. Help! Do I just have an overly sweaty forehead?

So to just briefly recap last week. Week 2 of training went like this:

Monday: REST DAY!
Tuesday: 3 Mile run. I did this one at night because I couldn’t get myself up in time before work, but I was glad I did. It was mildly cooler that evening and a bit breezy. I felt good and ran an 8:20ish pace for the majority of the run, which is really more like I’m used to. I’m noticing my comfortable pace is about 15-25 seconds slower in the summer. I’ll get over it, but it is a slight blow to the ego when I see my pace slowing a bit.
Wednesday: 5 Mile run at or around race pace. I don’t remember a lot about this run except that I was drenched in sweat after. I hate you heat.
Thursday: 3 Mile run+Chisel: Not much to say about either. Did my run in the AM and Chisel at night.
Friday: Hot Pilates
Saturday: Strengthening: What I thought was a very mild and short strength session left me sore for my long run the next day. D’oh. Too many squats.
Sunday: 9 Mile run: Adam and I ran together. We (he) mapped out a new course we’ve never taken before which took us across the Manhattan Bridge, which is my new favorite bridge! So flat, I love flat! Into Manhattan for a very short section through Chinatown and the LES, and back into Brooklyn via the Williamsburg Bridge, which is definitely NOT my favorite bridge. While the incline sucks, it’s really the sharp decline at the end which kills my knees.

I stole this map from Adam, because I’ve failed to upload any of my runs in the last few weeks. Why? Software updates!

While it was humid out, it was overcast, which made it not so terrible. We left around 8ish and I’m thinking if we really want to beat the heat, we’re going to have to wake up AT LEAST an hour earlier. 6AM every Sunday??! Yeah right… Other than that, I felt good and we stayed at our target pace which was about 30-45 seconds slower than marathon race pace. Oh, and if I thought I was drenched on Wednesday, coming home from my run on Sunday was like stepping out of the shower with all my clothes on. Yeah. Gross.

Week 3! Wooo!

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