Random Thoughts Thursday

Why is it such a struggle for me to start a morning run?

-The alarm clock does not go off. Now that the hubby has lost a few pounds on the Whole 30 diet, he does not snore as much so his snoring doesn’t wake me at 3, 4, and/or 5 am. Also, the nightly fireworks that would run from 10 pm to 3 am have stopped (thank the Lord). 

-I can never find all of my running stuff. Where’s the other sock? Where’s the other calf sleeve? Where’s the running tank that does not make me look like a big rig? This still happens even when I lay out things the night before. 

-I (or someone else) misplaced some things, e.g. keys, wallet, shoes, and I have to spend 10 minutes finding them. Once, I found my keys in the freaking freezer.

-My iPhone and/or Apple Watch battery is low, and I have to spend 30 minutes to charge these devices 

-I’ll bullsh*t on Facebook, Instagram, and/or Twitter for a hot minute. Those “unusual facts” Buzzfeed articles are addictive. 

-Sometimes I make the mistake of checking work email before heading out, and I’ll answer one or two important emails. Then I’m like, while I’m here with the laptop open, I might as well answer these other emails. Next thing I know, I composing and sending emails for the next hour. 

-I get all of my clothes on and ready to head out, and my body tells me that I have to poop . . . again. I normally poop as soon as I wake up, but sometimes I have two to three rounds of pooping before leaving the apt. 

-Ok, I’m out of the apt and making my way to the park. Crap, I forgot my bottle of water, mask, and/or Apple Watch.  

-Crap, one side of my earphones does not work, so I gotta buy a new pair from a random bodega. 

Speaking of earphones for the newer iPhones. Why do some of the wired earphones require Bluetooth? Or did I buy some bootleg earphones?

What things prevent (or rather delay) you from starting your morning run?

Click to find me on Instagram

Click to find me on Strava 

Click to find me on Twitter

 

Maybe I’ll hire a running coach or consultant

Back to a little bitching and moaning. 

Based on this running update from last week, I’m not sure what to do about running. For this past weekend’s long run, I attempted to run 10 miles, but I was able to complete only 8.5ish miles. I’m not too concerned with not completing my intended distance. It was hot as hell on Saturday.

519BC93C-F28E-4217-A158-5A783292DD1D_4_5005_c.jpeg

My problem is the amount of walking that I have to do on pretty much all of my runs. Ok, I totally understand that it has been quite warm over this summer (like ALL summers), but I do not think that I should be walking 2 miles into a long . . . longish run. A few things come to mind. 

I’m running too slow. 

For a while, I have been reading articles that suggest running slower to run faster. I think that I’m taking the slow part of this advice to the extreme. I do not get how I can run 8’45” mile sprints a speed workout, but cannot complete 2 miles without walking during a long run. Perhaps, I’m running so slow that my brain is telling my body “f*ck, if you are running this slow, then you might as well walk for a bit.”

I’m still too “fat” for what I’m trying to do 

It’s quite clear that I have gained some weight during this pandemic, and dragging this extra mass is one of the factors keeping me slow. I am the biggest that I’ve ever been. At first, I was “muscular fat”, but I think it’s “regular fat” now. With the combination of running, doing Shaun T’s Insanity (HIIT workout), and following (for the most part) the Whole 30 diet, I have dropped a few pounds.  Actually, I have not weighed myself in a while, but the hubby has said that I’m “less fleshy” in the belly region. Perhaps, as I lose more weight, I’ll walk less while running. 

Am I injured and do not know it?

We all know that I’m always dealing with some lower back issues. But maybe there are a couple of other internal things that are out of sync. Lately, I have been experiencing more tightness in my calves, and I definitely know that my hip flexors are pretty weak. Also, I think some of the calf tightness may be attributed to the Insanity workouts. Granted, I probably do not stretch as much I as should after running. The issue of stretching is always in a constant flux with me. After Saturday’s struggle run, I did take off a couple of days (Sunday and Monday) from running and my HIIT workouts to rest. I’ll admit that I took off Monday because I was a tad hungover from Sunday Funday. I may have had a few two many of these Purple Rains while hanging on the Lower East Side. 

Cocktails

Purple Rain – Purple gin (I forget the brand), Prosecco, and Grapefruit juice

I did feel a bit better and more energized during Tuesday’s run, but the run was still a struggle. However, I was expecting a struggle run anyway because it was super hot on Tuesday. During the run, I really did not check my Apple Watch that much. At one point, I was like man this has been a tough 3.5 miles, then I was so hurt to see that I’d run only 2 point something miles. 

With all of these real and possible imaginary issues, perhaps, it would beneficial to sign up for a few coaching sessions or running consultations. Honestly, with the amount of information out there,  I thought that having running coaches was kind of a bougie thing to do. Well . . . then again, I am kind of cheap too. But, maybe I need a professional to get me back on track. Since I’m not seeing much improvement, I’m obviously doing something wrong.

Have you hired a running coach or consultant? If so, what was your experience? 

Click to find me on Instagram

Click to find me on Strava 

Click to find me on Twitter

Another so so week running in NYC

Quick Recap

Although I ran pretty much every day this past week, I’m suffering from low motivation. The reason behind this is that I’m not seeing much improvement in my running because I’m still slow as f*ck. Well, slow as f*ck compared to where I was last year around this time. Unfortunately, I’m still walking more than I would like to during all of my runs. I guess that I just need to sit down and start comparing my times on similar routes to see if there is any improvement. Even though it was muggy as hell over the weekend (and I had to walk a bunch of times), I really enjoyed my 10ish mile run from Brooklyn back to Harlem.

Brooklyn Bridge

 

It was already super hot at 7:45ish am in Brooklyn; I was sweated out before starting the damn run. 

I have been doing a bit more speed workouts, mainly 1km and 400m sprint repeats. This week, I think that I’ll try to do mile repeats and add in a hill workout. To be honest last Sunday’s 1km sprints were supposed to be 1mi sprints, but I forgot to switch my Apple Watch from kilometers to miles. Oooppppss.

Virtual Challenges

Since I have been running some distance on a daily basis, I am making some progress for my two virtual challenges – One NY Challenge (1000K) and NYCRuns Subway Challenge (245 miles).

I think that I’ll finish the Subway Challenge by the end of the summer, but I’m not too sure about the One NY Challenge. However, I think it will be interesting to see how far I get through NY State.

D3B255C7-C9FF-4172-90A0-91296C655C84.png

Current progress for One NY Challenge

Some good news. Over the past week, I’ve noticed that my HIIT (Shaun T’s Insanity) workouts have been getting “easier”. I guess that I meant to say that I do not have to take as many breaks during these workouts.

8674EFA6-36F8-4064-AC87-AB5B974B66B1_1_105_c

This photo was taken after one of my HIIT workouts; keep in mind that I had the AC on full blast. My sweat drops, instead of my finger, took this photo. I’m not sure what I was thinking doing a HIIT workout after running/walking ~10mi. I guess that I was in the zone.

Oh, I am enjoying my new toy.

After two days of use, I have noticed that my calf muscles are not as tight as they use to be. Hopefully, this relief will extend to my quads and shoulders.

Whole30 Diet

922790E0-26A1-4DD4-8D63-97304DFE2830_1_105_c

A kind of funny Whole 30 diet story. The hubby is 100% committed to doing the diet; whereas, I am not. I mean all of my meals have been based off of the diet, but I have had a few cocktails, glasses of wine, frozen adult beverages since starting. Since Friday was super rainy and I was feeling a bit down, I decided to order cookies and ice cream from Insomnia Cookies. Eating a big a** bowl of ice cream after not having any dairy for about 12 days is not a good idea . . . especially if you are already lactose sensitive. Man, I had the worst bellyache and gas. I mean, some of those ice cream-induced farts were quite lethal.

Question

How do you stay motivated when you do not see any signficant progress during a workout/training plan?

Click to find me on Instagram

Click to find me on Strava 

Click to find me on Twitter

 

 

NYC Marathon (???) Training 2020 Week #2

Well, the word is out, and we know that the TCS NYC Marathon is not going to happen in Nov.

NYC Marathon

Courtesy of The New York Times

Although many folks are upset, I agree with the New York Road Runner’s (NYRR) decision not to hold this international, multi-day, 50,000+ runner event. Also, I’m glad NYRR let us know in June (and at the beginning of most folks’ training plans) rather than waiting until Sept or Oct to cancel. I will say that NYRR has provided some very fair deferment offers. One can claim a guaranteed entry for ’21, ’22, ’23. Also, one can receive a full refund of his/her entry fees or donate the fees to NYRR’s outreach programs. 

Even though I kind of knew that the marathon was going to be canceled, I had planned to train for it and to run the second half the marathon’s course on Nov. 1st. I think that I’m going to modify this plan because I am not in any kind of shape to train for a marathon. I gotta face facts. 

The main reason for changing this plan: I’ve gained a good 10 pounds since March, which has made me super slow . . . not that I was a super-fast runner. This is really sad because I was LOSING weight while training for Madrid’s Marathon, which was supposed to be held in April. Stupid pandemic. Overall, my cardio “strength/power” has significantly gone down over the past few months in quarantine. At this point, I can hardly get through 3 miles without taking a walk break. So I do not see myself doing any type of long run (10+ miles) anytime soon. Rather than training for a full marathon, I think that I’ll focus on training for a half marathon with emphasis on improving my cardio stamina.

Monday:

Planned: Rest day

Completed: Shaun T’s Insanity (22 min) and Hip Hop Abs (31 min)

I tried Shaun T’s Insanity back in the day and had decent results until screwing up my lower back. This time around, I am being a bit more cautious and modifying moves to the “backbreaker” exercises. I honestly thought that Shaun T’s Hip Hop Abs would be a bit more intense, but I think I’ll just do this as a form of a cool down from Insanity. 

Beachbody

Tuesday:

Planned: 4 mi

Completed: 1 mi 

It was just one of those days. NYC recently moved into Phase 2 of reopening the city. I started out on my usual route in Central Park, but I just was not feeling it because the outer Central Park loop was just way too congested with adults, kids, and dogs. Also, I started the run around 4 pm and just was not super motivated. Hey, something is better than nothing . . . I guess. 

Wednesday:

Planned: 5 mi

Completed: 4.25 mi

Central Park

I did some easy, “fast” loops on the makeshift track in Central Park’s Great Hill. I did not finish this workout because my phone and Apple watch keep buzzing with 80 million people telling me that NYC’s Marathon was canceled.  

Oh, I had a pre-birthday party with some neighbors from our apartment building. We went a little nutty with the bday cake. 

139139FF-3692-452E-AB2E-46569A51BFD5_1_105_c

Thursday:

Planned: 3 mi

Completed: Shaun T’s Insanity and Hip Hop Abs

I woke up a bit late . . . Hey, it was my birthday, and I figured that it was ok to sleep in. Although I did not do a run, I did a couple of my Shaun T workouts. Since it was my bday, the hubby and I headed to Jacob Riis Beach for a few hours in the sand and surf.

The “No Swimming” sign in the middle scared the crap out of me. I was trying to be bougie and rented a Zipcar rather than taking public transportation to this beach. It takes about 45 min to drive to this beach versus ~ 2 hours to take public transportation. I would have been pissed if I spent money on a car rental to just sit on the beach. I’m one of those people who must go into the water when visiting a beach. I know that some folks are content with sitting and chillin’ on the sand. Fortunately, a few minutes after setting up shop on the sand, we saw some folks swimming. OMG. The water was soo refreshing because it was the perfect temperature . . . just a couple of degree above ice cold. 

This year, some friends and family threw me a surprise Zoom bday party. As most folks know I’m not a huge fan of Zoom parties, but it was nice to kind of hang out.

Birthday Cake

A yummy three-layer red velvet birthday cake. So much for losing a few pounds. 

Friday:

Planned: Rest

Completed: Rest, I was quite hungover from my bday celebration. 

Saturday:

Planned: 9 mi

Completed: 3.58

The plan seemed simple enough. Run south along the Hudson River, make my way to Central Park, and run back to Harlem through the Park. 

It was this run that made me kind of decide that I need to stop wasting my time and pretending that I’m in decent enough shape to train for a full marathon. I was weak, tired, and uninterested in running to Harlem once I hit Central Park. Hell, I was all sweated out BEFORE starting the damn run. Once I reached Central Park and knew that I was not planning to run a single inch, I texted the hubby to meet somewhere in Harlem for brunch. 

Brunch at Settepani, Harlem, NYC

As you can see, the champagne brunch really lifted my spirits.

Sunday:

Planned: Rest

Completed: Insanity and Hip Hop Abs

I think that I figured out ONE of the many reasons why I have been such a struggle running lately. My hip flexors are extremely weak, which I noticed while doing Hip Hop Abs. 

Well, that was my week, which was filled with struggling runs, some HIIT, a pandemic bday celebration, and brunch. 

Random question:

In your neck of the woods, have folks been going crazy with fireworks for the last two weeks? By crazy, I mean shooting fireworks from 8 pm till about 3/4 am EVERY-FREAKING-NIGHT?

D8F7E4B5-43C3-4AF7-9C3C-99ABE1FEBA70_1_105_c

Click to find me on Instagram

Click to find me on Strava 

Click to find me on Twitter

Geez, can’t I catch a freaking break?

Last week, I wrote a post about getting back into my running groove (link to old post, ***), which sounded all great. So . . . um . . . yeah, I screwed up my back AGAIN. Maybe this is message from some divine entity telling me that I should give up running during this quarantine. 

The general plan was to start running my 6 miles a day, which was going well on Monday and Tuesday. 

Wednesday, the hubby and I ventured outside of NYC to go on a hike. 

Random:

It looks like we left the city right in the nick of time on Wednesday. 

K2OojK0WQOa1UOHu3W7Hig_thumb_4802

Back to the story:

I must have some bad footing during the hike because my lower back has been hurting since the hike. It was not an “Oh, my back hurts” kind of pain; it was more like an “Oh crap, do I have to the ER for this sh*t” for this kind of pain. Except for stretching, I guess there is not much that I can do about it. 

Well, I did have fun on the hike and the weather was perfect  . . . too bad I screwed up my back for the rest of the week. 

A few pics from the hike

Random II:

Not too sure about this piece of advice, NYRR. How does this work running in NYC?

QNFPqZ0AQd2v9SLdTdFIig_thumb_482b

There’s no way in HELL that I will ever leave a water bottle unattended anywhere in NYC. 

Click to find me on Instagram

Click to find me on Strava 

Click to find me on Twitter

Getting Back to the Grind . . . I think

Quarantine running

Getting back into quarantine fitness has been a bit slow, but I went on a few runs last week. I will say that it was nice getting back out there, but it was tough because

  • I have not done anything physical in April,
  • It’s tough running with a buff around your face. 
running, central park

Central Park running.

It pretty much did my standard 6.1 ish mile run in Central Park.

7pTb0%vXSpmoCifJvUZ6aw_thumb_46eb

It was a bit tough getting back into the flow because it was quite hard breathing through the buff. At certain times, with the accumulation of sweat, running felt like a light version of waterboarding. 

Also, I definitely felt the effects of not running (and chain-smoking) for an entire month. I ran easy intervals (0.75mi on and 0.25mi off) for my 6.1mi loop. Before my running hiatus, I was experiencing some pain in the lower part of my left leg. I figured that the month off would have been beneficial; however, I’ve noticed that the pain is back. 😦 So, I am a bit concerned about this pain and not sure what to do about it. . . if I can do anything about it.  Perhaps, my quarantine life weight gain is putting extra stress on my almost 40 years old bones. 

Below is the elevation map of Central Park’s 6.1 mi outer loop. 

FkqF8TilTmKPrgC4j76m0g_thumb_4740

Perhaps, I should have started running a flatter course and built up to Central Park’s rolling hills. Whatever is going on with my leg, I need to figure it out because I would like to begin training for NYC’s Marathon  . . . which probably will not happen. But, better safe than sorry. Also, I would like to get back to my 2020 resolution of running a half marathon every month, with the exception of April. 

Random question: Is it too soon to award virtual race medals in the form of coronavirus particles?

qqjZLSc3TQyaZ2mMCheEvw_thumb_4735

Have you been running with a mask? If so, how has it affected your running?

Click to find me on Instagram

Click to find me on Strava 

Click to find me on Twitter

 

Race Report: The Lantern Run Half Marathon

Date: March 07; 8:30 am

Distance: 13.1 mi / 21.2 km

Place: Hudson River Park, Pier 45, Manhattan, NY

Weather:  36 F

Finishers: ???  

Offical time / pace: ???

Still going strong with my 2020’s resolution to run a half marathon every month. We’ll see how long this lasts with the spread of the coronavirus. 

This half marathon was pretty chill. From The Lantern Run’s website: 

We’ve stripped the excess of larger races to focus on just the run itself for participants looking to receive a recorded time while improving their run.

For these races, entry is capped at 25 participants. I think there were only seven folks who ran the half in my wave. For the March 07 half, I believe there were four waves – 8:30 am, 10 am, 11:30 am, and 2 pm. Of course, all the later ones were full, so I went with the 8:30 am “wave”. Since the races (they also have a 5K and 10K) are super small, the organizers send your race crap to you before the race, which was super convenient. 

UNADJUSTEDNONRAW_thumb_43c8

I really loved the shirt’s message, especially in light of all of this coronavirus stuff. It did feel a bit weird receiving my finisher’s medal before running the race. 

UNADJUSTEDNONRAW_thumb_43de

The race itself was very low key; it felt more like a long run with a running group than an actual race. We met the ‘folks in neon shirts’ on the pier, the guys explained the route, and we were off. After starting, I do not think that I saw anyone else again until the finish.

%gWzm2lAQ9+08czaekOjVQ_thumb_43ea

Since no one was wearing bibs or the finisher shirts, everyone (at least to me) just blended into the normal weekend runners. The “course” was pretty simple – 4 loops of running from Pier 45 to Pier 26, then north to W12 Street, then south to Piers 46 and 45.

UNADJUSTEDNONRAW_thumb_43e4

Since this was supposed to be a long run Saturday, I ran another 4 miles after the half-marathon. 

I pretty much ran this “race” just to finish. I did not go into it having a real goal, probably because I knew that I was going to add additional miles to this one. Although the temperatures were in the mid 30s, which is not too bad, it was SO windy . . . especially on the piers. At a few points, I felt like the gusts of wind were going to blow me into the damn Hudson River. Seriously, those headwinds were no joke. 

orpjINAIQKmhqWRm8h18eA_thumb_43df

I think that I’m becoming a fan of these half marathon courses with multiple loops. They allow me to compartmentalize the run better – a half marathon feels shorter when you think of it as a bit more than four 5Ks. Honestly, I hadn’t realized that I completed two of the four loops until I looked at my watch. I was like oh wow, I’ve already run 6.97 miles. Sh*t, I’m almost done. For me, anything past the halfway mark is ‘almost done’. For this race, I really wasn’t focusing on time and pretty much told myself that I would run to the music. I played Shakia’s Donde Estan Los Ladrones album and Laura Pausini’s Hazte Sentir and Primavera Anticipada albums.

After listening to those 2.5 albums (I only listened to three or four songs of the Primavera Anticipada album), I was pretty much done and did not feel too fatigued. Then, I was like my half-assed marathon training is paying off. I guess training during the winter for a spring marathon has a lot to do with this feeling because I do not train very well in 85F+ weather. Although I ran four extra miles after the half, I felt like I could have gone another 2 miles. I pretty much stopped because I was getting a bit hungry and was about to pass one of my favorite dive diners in Hell’s Kitchen. 

 

A bacon and prosciutto omelette with coffee and ONE beer. 

Another poop story. After finishing the half and embarking on my 4 four additional miles. At mile 15, I really felt like I needed to poop, and it felt like a ‘juicy’ poop. I randomly found a restroom somewhere in Chelsa Piers. Like most folks, I cannot stand public restrooms. I get into the restroom, sanitized the seat with plenty of soap and water, put a stack of toilet paper on the seat, and went to business. Damnit if the huge dump that I thought I was going to take was nothing more than a loud fart. All that work sanitizing for nothing. But then again, one should not trust a fart after 5K, right?

Next Half Marathon (subject to this damn coronavirus): NYCRUNS Queens Half Marathon, Saturday, April 4. 

At this point, folks organizing Madrid’s Marathon (Apr. 26) have not decided to cancel or postpone the race. 

 

Race Report: Valentines Day Half Marathon

Date: February 14; 10:00 am

Distance: 13.1 mi / 21.2 km

Place: Beach 116th street, Rockaway Beach, Queens, NY

Weather:  19 F

Finishers: 69  

Offical time / pace: 2:11 / 10:01min/mi

Rockapulco Half Marathon

As some may know, I made a New Year’s resolution to run a half marathon every month during 2020. We have half marathon 2 out of 12 now completed. Yay me. I’m proud of myself for finishing because boy this was a cold one. 

One can clearly see that this was a super small marathon, which had a different type of vibe compared to the regular races that I run with the New York Road Runners. Also, it was very low key; the runners met at a bar, headed over to the boardwalk, and the organizer (after explaining the prizes) was like AND, GO!

Rockapulco Half Marathon

The pack

Getting there was a complete sh*t show. A subway ride that’s supposed to take about 1.5 hrs ended up being a little over 2 hours. 

Rockapulco Half Marathon

The commute

  • I almost missed the start. 
  • I had to pee for the last 40 minutes of the subway ride. I’m so lucky that there are restrooms in the subway station in the Rockaways. 

Internal Race Goals:

  • Run 2 miles of fartleks
  • Run at least one mile at a sub 9:45 min/mi pace

Miles 1 – 4 

The beginning of the race:

Rockapulco Run

A mile into the race:

Rockapulco Run

For this portion of the half, I was more or less trying to get my sh*t together. Since I arrived at the bar after all the folks were escorted to the start, I had to stop for a little bit to get my music going, put things in the correct pockets (I’m very particular which pockets hold which things), and have a quick stretch session. 

During the third mile, I felt a weird burning sensation in my right hand. This has happened once before while running an outdoor track workout in 18 F weather. It was kind of concerning because this happened only in my right hand. I actually feared that I would not be able to finish the race because of this. I was not wearing gloves the first time this happened a couple of weeks ago. For this half, I wore TWO pairs of gloves and an athletic sweatshirt with sleeves covering my hands.  I rubbed my fingers together like I was trying to get some money, and that seemed to work.Phew giphy (2)

Yay. I would not get a DNF . . . at least for this reason. But . . . yeah, I need to figure out what’s going on with the circulation in my right hand. 

Miles 5 – 8

Since the course was two loops around a section of the boardwalk and my hand issue was behind me, I really got into my groove.  I managed to do my two-mile fartleks during this portion of the race and started to catch up to and overtake some folks. 

3Dwd+1eIReKFyynjax3FkA_thumb_4299

Miles 9 – 13.1

Maybe I was getting tired or maybe I was hungry, but I slowed up during Miles 8 and 9. Not really sure what happened. Perhaps, I was saving myself for the final push or maybe I was distracted by taking pictures or getting the right music going. At least during Mile 10, I managed to push hard and ran that mile in 9’30”. I have it in me to run faster; I just have to push myself (and maybe do more speed work). At mile 11, I really wanted to catch up to one more person because I think she was running and walking. During this point, I noticed that someone was passing me (more on this below) so I wanted to give myself one last push to stay with him. Well . . . that did not happen until mile 13 with a 9’21” mile. Although I did not catch the two people (I finished about 10 seconds behind them), I was glad that I was able to make myself push twice in the last third of a half marathon. 

All in all, I had a nice race experience. And, I finished this one about 8 minutes faster than the Fred Lebow Half in January. The improvement was not super exciting for me because the Fred Lebow Half is a bit hilly, and this half marathon was very flat. 

UNADJUSTEDNONRAW_thumb_428d

Postrace Stuff: 

There was a little post-race celebration. Registration included a small brunch and a free drink at Rogers Irish Tavern.

Rockapulco Half Marathon

I ended hanging out at the bar for about 2 hours drinking and chatting with some other finishers and folks who live on the Rockaways.

Ok, I do not mean to sound like a hater, but I’m going to hate a little bit. 

Although I cannot prove this, I think a couple of people cut the course. Since the course was two loops B116th street -> B120th street -> B57 street -> B120th, you could see other runners to and from B120th and B57th.

Rockapulco Half Marathon

The course

Ok, there were several people who were far behind me after the first loop, and I know they did not pass me during the second loop. Could someone explain how these few folks arrived at bar WITH medals before I did? It’s not like this race really had course marshalls. There were trash cans at B120th and B57 streets, which indicated where we had to turn. I take that back because there was someone at B57th street for the first loop, but he was not there during my second loop. Ok, I don’t mind if folks cut the course. I was a bit annoyed because there wasn’t much food left at the bar when I arrived to the post-race brunch. Y’all know that I’m serious about my feedings. The brunch was self serve so the faster runners (or the course cutters) had first dibs. Eh, such is life . . . I guess.

After signing up for this race, I was a bit annoyed because there was not much information about the race itself, e.g. the course, the fluid stations (if any), or what the brunch actually included. Now that I have experienced my first Rockapulco-organized race and know what to expect, I would definitely run another one. The organizers have several races during the year, and the end of summer half (8/29/2020) looks kind of interesting. Plus, I could go swimming at the beach after the half . . . or drink at the bar. Wait? Running a half marathon in NYC, adjacent to a beach, with NO shade, in late August might literally be hell on Earth. 

At least the trip back home was not super intense. I guess it was not super intense because I did not have to be anywhere at a specific time. I even took my first trip on the NYC ferry back to Manhattan and met up with a friend to have a couple of drinks.

I was “primed” (my way of saying buzzed or semi-drunk) and wanted to keep the “celebration’ going. 

The Jeffrey NYC

Whiskey flights with chocolate. My kind of “dinner”.

Planned March half marathon: 

Lantern Run NYC, NY, NY

Training Update: Marathon Madrid Wk. 3

The theme of this training week. Rain, rain go away come back another day. It seems like we had so much rain this past week in NYC. For me, rainy days mean boring treadmill days. 

Generally speaking, it looks like my overall cardiovascular health has improved from Dec to Feb.

QHkDUyZDQUmhVo8Wcc36Kw_thumb_4244

Before reading Hansons Marathon Method, I never really cared about VO2 max.

Hanson

Image courtesy of Amazon.com

I knew of the term, but just never really cared about it. Probably because I did not know much about in relation to running and training.  Although it went up a bit since December, I do not know much I can trust it after looking at times from Tuesday’s workout.

Monday: Strength training

Tuesday: Mile intervals

It was one of those treadmill days, which meant that I could not hit the streets for these intervals. I learned something this from this training day . . . I cannot rely on my Apple Watch for treadmill running. IMG_2670

By no means, I am not a fast runner. But, I think that I am good decent enough shape where I would not run one-mile intervals at a 10+ min/mi pace . . . especially with my a 170 bpm heart rate. If this is the case, then I definitely need to be in the hospital and not training for a marathon. For the mile intervals, I was running a 10:00 – 8:34 min/mi pace according to the treadmill so something is amiss. Even if the Apple Watch did not accurately track my intervals, I know that I had a good and productive workout.

Wednesday: 5 miles with fartleks

I believe this was the first day without rain during the week so I made sure that could hit the pavement outside for this workout. It felt nice not running on a treadmill. I pretty much ran

Although this was an easy run, I incorporated fartleks during this run. This run confirmed that my Apple Watch is a bit off for treadmill running because, for this easy run, I ran 10:20 min/mi pace for the first half and a 9:44 min/mi for the second half.

Maybe because I had not heard the entire album in a while, but I was really jamming out to old school Shakira. Back when she had black hair in the late 90s.

6xWIul3ISuaOViwpD8A_thumb_421d

Friday: Upperbody strength day

Saturday: 13.1 miles 

I participated in Rockpulco Run’s half-marathon. I’ll expand a bit on the race in a race report. All I have to say I have my first official cold-ass race under my belt, and it felt great to complete that race. 

UNADJUSTEDNONRAW_thumb_4262

Sunday: Rest day 

After being inspired by the previous day’s half marathon and reading “Running to the Edge”, I really wanted to do an easy 2-3mi run. However, after class, I experienced an intense migraine . . . the kind that feels like someone is constantly stabbing you in the eye.

Goals for the week. 

In previous marathon training plans, I liked to incorporate a couple small training or non-training goals for the upcoming week.

  • Find a podiatrist ASAP. The corn that’s in between my fourth and fifth toes of my right foot’s pain is getting a bit worse. I have been using cushion pads to separate to the toes and to relieve the pressure; however, this is proving to be like putting a bandaid on a gunshot wound.
  • Run with at least ONE of my running groups.

Find me on Instagram

https://www.instagram.com/swosei12/

Find me on Strava

https://www.strava.com/athletes/26357948

Mini Book Review: Running Man

51t4UBlQCNL._SX329_BO1,204,203,200_

Image courtesy of Amazon.com

 

Right off the jump, the book started with Charlie’s addictions (alcohol and cocaine) and failures caused by these addictions. I was pretty much saying holy crap during the first 80 pages of the book because it was like he hit a downward spiral and stayed there. The second part of the book seemed to focus more on his marathon and ultra-marathon accomplishments, which were quite amazing. I get why he had to give us a background about all of his addictions to make the book more inspirational. He was/is a great runner and I wonder how great of a runner he would have been had drugs and alcohol not gotten in the way. He recounts one story where he drank and snorted cocaine until 2-3 am and realized that he had to run Big Sur’s Marathon in a few hours.

In light of his accomplishments, I do not think that I would like him as a person after reading this book. He seems like he would be an a**hole in real life. Maybe the intensity and determination one needs to finish countless feats of endurance (e.g. running across the Sahara and the U.S.) can come off as arrogant or egotistical. Some may feel that the book spent too much time talking about drugs and alcohol, but I felt that these stories humanized him. Unfortunately, he is the type of human that I would not want to be around. At several points in the book, I was more interested in the “side characters” (e.g. his mom suffering through dementia, his teammate on the Sharara trip, and his two sons) than Charlie. That’s kind of bad when an autobiography is supposed to be about you. 

Ok, this is where the hater in me comes in. I’m not sure if I buy a lot of what he recounted in the book. A couple of things had me scratching my head.

  1. For someone who spent a greater portion of his life in the swamp of addiction, he has a REALLY good memory. 
  2. How does one accidentally becomes a crack user? Since his main 9 to 5 was working as a specialized car detailer. He often had to travel to different parts of the U.S. to fix paint jobs and dents on cars that were damaged during shipping from manufacturing plants. One day he went out to search for cocaine, but could not find any in hood. So his hooker friend gave him crack and he became hooked (pun intended). I guess it’s not that hard to believe, but still. There were a couple of stories where drug dealers tried to kill him. 
  3. Once he was clean. He had to travel to a job in Australia. He thought he signed up for a 5K but it ended up being a 52K AND he won (or placed very highly). How does someone mistake a 52K for a 5K. That makes no sense what’s so ever.
  4. I’ll be honest and admit that I was skipping around during this part, but the two-year incarceration for mortgage fraud was a bit questionable. However, I know that banks took advantage of many folks by approving home loans for folks who more than likely would default on them. It seemed like Charlie was blaming everyone but himself. At least he started a running program while incarcerated. 
  5. This is the part where I have to side-eye Charlie. Once he became sober, he and his wife separated and later divorced because he said that he wanted to experience love as a sober person. You mean after your wife gave you multiple chances, put up with all of your alcohol, cocaine, AND crack additions, you fall out of love with her once you are clean?!!! Maybe she fell out of love with him too and was sticking around for the kids. I must have missed something. It seemed that his ex-wife had the patience of Job dealing with all of his BS. When dealing with addiction, BS might be too strong of a word especially now that we know addiction is a disease. Let some mess like that happen to me, I would have to “Waiting to Exhale” or Lisa Lefteye Lopez someone. 

source (1).gif

hqdefault

Anyone read this book? If so, what did you think?

Next Review:

Hanson

Image courtesy of Amazon.com

Currently reading: 

QNuCFn1uS0mBCjbxhVSAqg_thumb_412a

Find me on Instagram

https://www.instagram.com/swosei12/

Find me on Strava

https://www.strava.com/athletes/26357948