Share the Path

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I’ve been focusing diligently on being a kinder person, particularly to strangers, as a way to spread goodness in these turbulent times. It’s been going pretty well, I’d say.

So today I was excited to go running in the park, first time in at least a month. One of my most favorite things to do. It was nice to get out and be with other runners even in the chilly morning air.

I was about 2/3 through my run and I was having an impressive internal monologue, my mind beginning to clear as I rounded the bottom of the loop.

And then I see them. Three abreast and I can tell there’s no intention of moving over.

m.runnersworld.com

m.runnersworld.com

As much as I love the running community, the running pack mentality drives me crazy. When you see someone running toward you, isn’t it common courtesy to share the path? Maybe move behind one of your pack members?

Well it’s not. I moved over to the outside line, adjacent to the bike lane so the three could stay in their formation. Because I’m practicing kindness and patience, I decided it was not a good idea to slam into the side of her (which I’ve done), but instead just included in my monologue that she doesn’t know any better, that she is unaware of any sort of space considerations to others on the course… sigh…

Of course I didn’t let her lack of regard for another runner ruin my bliss, so I kept on like nobody’s business. I think about these things runners do, not because it interrupted my run or thoughts much, but because I know this is a common practice of hers and many others. A thoughtless practice.

Come on people, move! I’d rather smile at you while you move over than scowl because you didn’t. 🙂

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Couldn’t Stand It!

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I couldn’t!

I had to register for a race! I miss them.

I need to run, so I registered for the Ted Corbitt 15k in Central Park mid-Decemeber to make myself feel better. I did the run last year and it was lovely so, you know. But I don’t want to move my marathon widget! I’ll have to figure something out to keep it showcased…

And ok – so I applied for the NYC half in March too! So sue me!

I feel a little better now 🙂

 

Trials & Tribulations of Seasonal Running

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Unless you live in a climate that is conducive to year-round outdoor running, you might be crazy to think you would achieve PR during a winter race. Call me a pessimist on this one, but if you’re like me – hate the treadmill, tend to be the semi-fair-weather runner (although getting better at winter running!) –  no PR’s until later in the year. Running in the winter is just a lot of work! You have road conditions to consider, clothing issues, hydration to factor in, breathing can be more difficult – you get it, right?

Note: Don’t be offended that I may have just insinuated they you may in fact be crazy 😉 Just sayin’…

On the sunny side, I’m predicting an earlier PR this year since I have been participating in a few winter races (and hopefully you have been too)! Thankfully these once-monthly events are keeping me close to, but not quite, on track (no pun intended).

I looked back at my Nike+ app to check out my best times in late 2013. Turns out late October, November and early December were my best runs. Makes sense – prime running weather, lots of summer and fall running, little to worry about. So I’m hoping to get back to my November-runner-self quickly, like maybe April or May?… We’ll see.

This month I have one more scheduled race on the 22nd, with my first half scheduled in mid-March. I’m increasing the frequency of races to every second week after the 22nd, as well as the frequency of longer runs – very quickly! Three halves before the end of May! Last year I only ran two halves all year!

Weeeee! PRs here I come! I have a feeling the rest of the year will be run-tastic! Sorry, cheesy I know. Happy running!

P.S. I do not look like this when running! I keep it to a minimum with gadgets and distractions 😉

Running in Fog…

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… is like running in a dream. You have this feeling of running in slow motion with no idea where you are headed or where the end is. Reality checks were necessary while I was running this morning. Today was the first official race of 2014 for both the NYRR and me. After a month of NYRR race hiatus, 6,000 runners gathered in Central Park for the Joe Kleinerman 10k.

I was alert the first couple of miles and managed the Harlem Hills quite nicely, but as I ran along the west side and around along Central Park South, I was in this sleepy daze due to misty and foggy conditions.

The Pond on the west side

The Pond on the west side

On the flip side, running in 93% humidity was great for my skin, nasal passages and lungs. It was like I was at the spa, in a perfectly-temperatured steam room, my skin absorbing as much moisture as it could take. After a week of lost moisture due to absurdly hot classroom conditions, I needed that humidity. I probably should have fueled up with Vitamin Water during the week to account for the excessive loss of fluids, no joke. Complete sauna in my classroom. So today I was pretty thirsty while running because of last week’s “drought”.

In any case, I may have felt more mentally in tune with this event had it not been misty or foggy, or me running in an under-hydrated state. Not making excuses – I finished in around my usual time, but man was I “foggy” morning.

Sniff… I Know, It’s Just a Widget

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Today I will be removing the widgets for “2013 Completed Races”… sniff. I know, I know… those little square boxes of my scheduled running accomplishments are just little date reminders, but to me they represent productivity and growth in running. Those little boxes make me feel successful, particularly since this I’ve been sitting on my couch in this cold and blustery weather – and that means less and less outdoor winter running for now… but 2013 is over! I need room for my “Upcoming 2014 Running Event” widgets, categorized by season of course 😉 . Weeeeee!

What races (running events) are participating in this year? Check out my widgets for registered races so far.

Legs + Cold = Heavy Brick Legs

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Ted Corbitt 15k in Central Park this am.

West side, looking at The San Remo, light flakes at this point

West side, looking at The San Remo, light flakes at this point (mile 1/5)

  • 6 train up to 103 Street – good.
  • Walked to 102 Street entrance of park – good.
  • Baggage line – no big deal.
  • Didn’t get my usual beginning of race instagram pic because I was waiting in the bag line – fine.
  • Entered the corral area and started right away – awesome.
  • Big flakes falling from the sky – pretty (and somewhat blinding).
  • Nice run until … legs and butt became cold heavy bricks with extremely tight hip flexors! – no bueno.
  • Slight struggle to physically push myself through this stiffness for about 3 miles (miles 3-6) – big thumbs down.
  • Passed the start/finish at mile 5, sounds of Adam Levine getting his moves on – muy bueno.
  • Music faded and kept trying to extend my legs back, kick my heels up and the like – not overly helpful.
  • Mind and body back in the race around mile 7 – good.
  • Wind started to pick up back on the east side miles 7/8 – thumbs down.
  • Finished in decent time despite the minor hang ups – excellent.
Thin blanket, leaving the finish area heading back to the east side.

Thin blanket, leaving the finish area heading back to the east side.

Jingly Jog!

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Yesterday morning I participated in the NYRR Jingle Bell Jog today; my first official registered “winter” run ever.

brooklynexposed.com

brooklynexposed.com

I was a bit nervous because this was a new race condition for me. My minute amount of anxiety concerning this morning’s run was not the location or route or whether I could finish, but… clothing.

I am not new to winter running but new to winter race events.

When Brett and I lived in Edmonton we used to run in the winter a lot; running on the packed snow in our section of the river valley, on the icy stairs up to cross the Rossdale bridge, then along the caked up sidewalk back to the condo. We wouldn’t have to worry about being warm enough or getting stranded because we literally would be running immediately from the entrance and end at the entrance. No chance to get cold en route to a run or afterward, and if we were cold while running of well! It was a short distance!

So my worry for this race was – will I be warm enough? Would I get too hot during the run? I needed to travel to Prospect Park, no big deal. Done that enough times, but I was concerned about the walk from the subway to the start and then back to the subway afterward. And I didn’t want to get too hot when running either. Well, I think I planned well.

The key: simple layers and bag check.

The gear:

  • tech T-shirt
  • long-sleeved tech shirt
  • Nike Pro Dri-Fit semi-turtleneck-ish sweater
  • regular gym pants (I opted out wearing the Dri-Fit pants because it wasn’t super cold)
  • Uniqlo down jacket (squishes to fit in the clear bag check bag)
  • headband and gloves

So here’s the warmth break down:

I was warm on the way to the park. I changed into my Dri-Fit top near the bag check area then checked my bag right away.

I walked over to the start area and was comfortable. I’ve become a good judge of arriving to the start at just the right time so I only had to wait a few minutes to begin.

During the run I was comfortable on top, although my thighs and butt were a cold. I probably could have opted for the Dri-Fit pants, but I was fine. I wore my headband and gloves for 2 of the 4 miles then removed them and clipped them to my belt.

Post-run – no problem! — The bag check was just past the finish line so I went right there after collecting an apple and hot chocolate (opted out of the red and green bagels). Once I got my bag, I swapped my Dri-Fit top for my puffy jacket and headed to the subway. Perfecto!

Thankfully the rain had stopped and it was nice enough out at about -2 Celsius,  but it’s cooling down this week… Hope I’ll be warm enough for Ted Corbitt 10k next Saturday in Central Park!