Random Thoughts Thursday

Man, it has been so hard to update this thing. When do you folks find the time? Actually, it’s not an issue with time; but rather, an issue of not wanting to look at a computer screen at home after sitting in front of a computer screen for 8-10 hours at work. My goal is to try to update at least three times a week. We’ll see how this goes. 

On to the randomness. 

  • I have been in a training lull for the past few weeks. Hopefully, that will change now that I have a few races on the calendar. 
  • I still have not ran with the two running groups that I joined back in January. 😦
  • Anyone check out the news about the pictures of a black hole ( *** )?
  • Word on the street is that I may have an opportunity to visit Hawai’i this fall. 
  • I’ve been watching old episodes of Family Matters on Hulu. As a 39-year old, I find Steve Urkel’s character to be quite annoying and distracting from the show’s focus around the Winslow family. I can understand why there were some issues with the older cast members about the character development of the Urkel. 
  • The weather is finally getting nice in NYC. Spring is my favorite season.
  • How do folks keep up with all of their social media accounts? Between my professional, personal, and job accounts, I have to manage 6 separate accounts. Plus, update 3 blogs. Clearly, I have not been doing a good job with blogging. 
    • Professional stuff: Twitter and LinkedIN
    • Random stuff: Instagram and Facebook. 
    • My program’s social media accounts: Instagram and Twitter
    • Running and training (I use both terms very loosely): WordPress and Squarespace (personal website)
    • My thoughts on higher education and scientific communications: WordPress. 
  • My mind has been so scattered lately. 
  • Married life is nice, but I have not noticed any real difference between married life and monogamous dating. Maybe, it’s due to my laidback (for the most part) personality. 

Enough randomness for now. Let’s see what y’all have been up to. 

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Food Pic of the Week

Sushi

Maru Sushi Bar & Grill.

(***)

I was tad hungover from sloring around town in Detroit. I found this semi bougie sushi place near the convention center.

Random: Dinning at the place was the first time that I saw non Asians preparing sushi.

Random Thursdays

  • My first trip to Detroit, MI. For some reason, Martha and the Vandellas’ “Dancing in the Street” has been on a constant loop in my head. Whenever I think of Motown, that’s one of the first songs that pops into my head.
  • I’m kind of bummed that my hotel does not have a gym nor are there many places to run around here.
  • I did attempt to do a quick Beachbody workout this morning, but there were issues streaming the workout.
  • Speaking of Beachbody, I’m not a fan of Shaun T’s new tattoos.
  • Yup, it is time to lose some weight because my suit pants are getting a little tight.
  • I’m not wearing a full suit for the conference and I don’t mind too much.
  • I wonder if there is a Crunch Gym nearby. Ha, my Uber just passed a Cruch Fitness.
  • Do you use social media in your professional life? For example, do you have a separate work and personal Twitter/Insta/Facebook?

Getting my life back on track

Now, that the excitement of the United NYC Half Marathon is over, it’s time to get back to business. Buuuuut, what is my business? I really have no idea of where to go to next in terms of running and general fitness. Well, actually, I would like to drop a few pounds by the end of summer. I’m thinking around 10 – 15 pounds. Wasn’t that my plan at the beginning of the year? 😉 Over the past couple of months, I have been a little a lot laid back with working out and watching what I eat/drink, which have manifested itself into a larger beer gut.

Although I do not have anything major to train for. Note: I need to register for some NYRR races so I can do 9+1 for 2020’s NYC Marathon. I do have a long-term goal of becoming a better marathon runner. I mean, can a brother become a sub 4-hr marathon runner? I have an entry for the 2019’s NYC Marathon, which gives me about 8 months to become a better marathon runner (hopefully, no injuries will derail me). The plan for this week is to come up with a couple of preseason workout regimens (and actually stick to it/them) before I start my marathon training in the summer. Although I did not perform as well as I would have liked in the United NYC Half Marathon, it is a nice feeling to know that I can run 13.1 miles without much training.

Please hook me up with any long-term marathon training plans that you may have. All suggestions are invited and welcomed.

Personal Health:

I have a couple of things that I need to take care off.

I got a new tooth. So that is off the list. 😉

Visit a goddamn podiatrist. Actually, once I finish this entry, I am going to find one. For the past year or so, I have been dealing with a soft corn (technically a heloma molle) between my pinky and ring toes on my right foot. I did not want to put the images in this post, but you can check out what they look like here ( *** , *** ). This issue is caused by the constant rubbing/friction between my fourth and fifth toes. Yes, I know that I should have gotten this taken care of while ago, but I did not want to miss the NYC Marathon or last week’s Half-Marathon because of foot surgery. You know, it’s better to “ignore” an injury than dealing with it, which is a Y chromosome thing. Also, the pain is pretty manageable depending on the type of shoes and socks that I wear. The most common way to fix a soft corn is to have some bone shaved off of the fourth and fifth toes to provide move space preventing the two toes from rubbing on each other.

I have been trying to cut back on the cigarettes. Before going to work, I leave my smokes at home so I will not smoke during the day. It has been going ok for the past 1.5 weeks. It’s actually getting to the point where it’s going to be impossible to buy cigarettes in NYC.

Random Thoughts Thursday: NYC Half Marathon Edition

Ok, I’m trying to get back to my normal blogging ( and yelping) life.

Here are a few things that have been running around my head (no pun) about this past half-marathon.

-I’m glad that I went for it, and the half marathon has jump-started my interest in getting my ass (literally) back in shape. Hopefully, I’m gonna follow up with some goals in upcoming posts. Once I submit this post, I’ll sign up for a few races to start my 9+1 journey to the NYC Marathon in 2020.

-Since my Apple Watch has a crack in the screen, it was kind of cool running a race without focusing on time. Actually, it was quite freeing.

-Speaking of my Apple Watch, that fucker is going to cost to $300 to fix. The damn watch was $350; I guess that I should have purchased the extended warranty.

-Seriously, where were the crowds? Now that I think of it, I finished the Half Marathon around 10 am, so maybe the race was too early for the crowds to come out and cheer for folks.

-I found out that many folks did not receive a medal. Ummmmmmm, wouldn’t NYRR know how many people registered for the United NYC Half Marathon? Perhaps, NYRR assumed that many of the registered folks would not show up to the race or not finish. You know something like, ordering 10% less food than the number of people that you invite to an event. Here’s the other thing (purely my opinion), I really do not see the point of receiving medals from races. Usually, the day after the race, my medal will go in a random bag or drawer, and I’ll probably not see it again until I move. I’m more interested in the technical tees. 

What an inspirational story. Thomas Panek is the first blind runner to complete the half marathon with guide dogs (Westley, Waffle, and Gus).

-I wonder if this guy ran the half marathon with this basket from the security checkpoint?

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-Added insult to injury. Thanks a lot for the reminder, Facebook. I was so close to meeting my goal (a sub 1:45) for the NYC Half back in 2016. I had to take a stupid poop during mile 3 three. 

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-Oh, I’m not a fan of Honey Stinger Energy Gels; they are way too viscous for me.

Race Report: NYC United Half Marathon

Date: March 17, 2019; 8:00 am

Distance: 13.1 mi

Place: Prospect Park, Brooklyn, NY

Weather: 34 F; 46% Humidity  

Finishers: 24,666 total (12,312 men / 12,354 women) 

Official time / pace:  2:11:18 / 10:01 min/mi 

You get the race that you train for. 

Going into this race, I really had no true expectations or goals aside from finishing. Although I did not run as well as I wanted to (due to lack of training on my part), I am glad that I went through with it. The night before the race, I was on the verge of not doing the race

For this entry, I guess that I could break this up in a few parts. 

Pre-race

NYC Half Marathon Outfit

Although I was assigned to Wave 1, I knew that I was not in Wave 1 shape. Plus, I did not want to have to arrive to Prospect Park by 6:25 am to check my bag. Then, it hit me. Do I really need or want to check a bag?  If I did not check a bag, then I could run in any wave, thus setting back my start time from 7:30 am to 8:40 am. Aka, I could wake up later.

NYc, MTA

My plan was to leave the apt. at 6:00 am so I could run in the second wave. Yeah, that did not go so well. The idea was to take the A train to Metrotech and the F train from Metrotech to Prospect Park. First, the A train, which does make any stops from 125th street to 59th street and runs express, was running local from 125th street. Second, the F train was severely delayed so I had to take another A train future into Brooklyn, then take the G train (really, the G?) to Prospect Park. By the time I walked the mile or so from the subway to the security checkpoint, I knew that I would not make Wave 2. That said, I was not too bothered since I was kind of easy breezy with my start plans. At this point, I really wished that I had prepared a sandwich or something because I was kind of hungry before starting. 

Miles 1 – 4:

Prospect Park, Grand Army Plaza

Grand Army Plaza

The first third of the half-marathon gave us a bit of a tour of Prospect Park and took us through the streets of Brooklyn. During these miles, I started off pretty slow because I did not want to risk injuring anything or running out of steam during the first part of the race. Late January was the last time that I ran anything over 8 miles. Plus, I was concerned that the first three to five miles were going to be pretty hilly. I probably could/should have pushed myself harder, but I did not want to risk the end of the race. Looking back at my experience, I am glad that I did not push myself any harder during this part because I probably would not have finished the run. 

There were not really too many crowds out during this part of the race, which was kind of weird, but we did spend some time in the less popular sections (to me) of Prospect Park. 

Miles 4 – 8:

Manhattan Bridge

Manhattan Bridge. Probably the least popular of the bridges that span the East River.

This part of the half-marathon took us through downtown Brooklyn and into Manhattan. Crossing the Manhattan Bridge was one of the things that I looked forward to . . . and feared. I was surprised that I did not struggle too much with the Manhattan Bridge. I do not know why, but I thought that we were going to be running on the pedestrian and bike paths, which have very steep inclines. However, we ran across the upper level of the bridge, which had a gradual increase in steepness. I thought that I would have to walk the incline of the bridge so I was quite happy that I managed to run the entire bridge. 

Arriving in Manhattan was so lackluster. There were hardly any crowds. Then again, I am comparing the experience of crossing a bridge into Manhattan from my NYC Marathon experience. In the NYC Marathon, you can hear the crowd’s cheers on Manhattan’s 1st Avenue roaring from the Queensboro Bridge. In last weekend’s half, you barely heard a peep. There was someone with a loudspeaker telling us that we had seven miles left.  I guess something is better than nothing. 

This portion of the race took us through Chinatown and along FDR Drive, which was also pretty quiet. Also, the beginning part of FDR Drive was very sticky; it reminded me of a nasty movie theater. It was like a glue truck had dumped glue along a 1 – 1.5 mile stretch of the route. 

Miles 8 – 12

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This portion of the half marathon took us through some great and iconic NYC sites: the UN, the Chrysler Building, Grand Central, Bryant Park, Times Square, Carnegie Hall, and Central Park. 

The first part of the segment was kind of nostalgic because we ran past NYU School of Medicine, which is where I completed my graduate studies. We actually past my old apartment building and old laboratory. 

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So many memories of boozing and cruising around Murray Hill. I mean, concentrating on my studies in immunology and molecular oncology. 

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On our way to Times Square

Again, I was expecting more folks along the course. 

Grand Central, NYC

Grand Central

It was during this part of the half that I was becoming quite fatigued and a bit over the race. One cool aspect of the NYC Marathon is there were large crowds (maybe not in the Bronx) that power you through the race. For the NYC Half, you kind of had to power yourself through it. The large majority of this chunk of the race is pretty flat so that made life a little more simple, which took my mind off of my fatigue. I pretty much cranked up my tunes and kept saying “one foot in front of another.”

Times Square

I’m running through freakin’ Times Square!!!

I started to overheat a bit and, at mile 11, had to walk a little. I think taking a bunch of selfies, pictures, and videos in and near Times Square kind of drained my mojo. The sad part is many of the Times Square pictures did not come out right so pretty much a bunch of time wasted. 

Miles 12 – 13.1

Absolute disaster. I totally forgot about the little hills sprinkled in Central Park. These hills are not super steep or difficult to climb, but my legs were pretty much done at this point. Around mile 10, I started to feel soreness in both of my quads, which was general pain from not running for the past 45 or so days. My bad. To get back into the groove and to finish strong, I tried to fartlek between light posts in Central Park, but after three or four fartleks, I had to walk again. I think this is the first time that I ever had to walk during the last mile of any race. But hey, I should be happy that I made to mile 12 without too much of a struggle. 

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Although it was not my best half-marathon (and surprisingly not my worst), I still had somewhat of a blast. Well, a blast until the last mile. That last mile was a true killer. Since I did not do bag check, I could not take a picture with my medal and a cigarette.

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The woman taking the picture was supposed to get a shot with the medal FACING the camera.

 Post Race:

I was so lucky because the finish is pretty close to the bus line that more or less drops me off in front of my apt. Although the bus takes longer than the subway, I do not think that I could have walked up and down a bunch of stairs for the 2 or 3 train. Once I arrived to Harlem, I treated myself to a splendid, yet simple, brunch at Harlem Shake. I even got myself a nice mimosa. Once the cashier found out that I ran a half-marathon, she really hooked me up the champagne portion of the mimosa. BTW, the grits with turkey sausage are AMAZING.

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Since it was St. Patrick’s Day, I managed to fit in a few more drinks with the BF husband. Actually, I would have had a few more drinks even if it was not St. Patrick’s Day.

Whiskey, Irish Carbombs (the husband never had one before), and Pisco Sours

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A milk mustache from the Irish Carbombs.

I hope everyone had a great running weekend or a great chilling weekend. 

I know that I have been MIA

I’ve been dealing with some stuff. Buuuuut, it’s not like many people read this thing. 

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Well, I have a feeling that the NYC Half will not happen for me. Does anyone have a 10-day half-marathon training plan that they can hook me up with? The last time I ran any significant distance (5+ miles) was over three weeks ago.  Perhaps, I will do my 2017 NYC Marathon game plan for this half-marathon: run the first half “strong” and see where the rest of the race takes me. Hopefully, it will not take me to the emergency room. 

As most of my readers know, I do not really get into the details of my personal life, aside from my pooping, drinking, smoking, and general randomness. BUUUUUUT, I got married on Friday!!! Most of the time from my last entry involved entertaining out of town and out of the country guests. Today, my liver was like: you got one more day of drinking and eating fatty foods, bitch. 

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I feel like my Ernie doll, and Burt is MIA.

Catch you on the streets.