…of running this race.*
My only real concern about it is that the race starts at 11am and we all know college football starts at noon. These are big decisions.
*Edit: And taking the Polar Bear plunge into Lake Michigan at the finish line. Nothing cures a hangover and says “Welcome, 2014!” like hypothermia.
I’ve put this off since I was despondent about it yesterday - there were tears and it wasn’t pretty…
Yesterday morning I set out to run Grete’s Great Gallop - a half marathon - as a training run with the intention of tacking 7 additional miles on to log my scheduled 20 miler.
But as they say, “the best laid plans of mice and men/often go awry”…
The race started out well enough. It was humid and misting a bit when the corrals collapsed into one another, the masses trudged toward the start line, and I set out to run my fourth half marathon. The first 4 miles flew by and I worried that my plan to really rein it in and take the whole half slowly and as a training run was falling by the wayside, but my pace was consistent with my plan for the day’s run.
The first loop of Central Park (the course was two times around the big loop) went smoothly enough. I took water or gatorade when I felt thirsty, took the hills like a champ, and was in good spirits despite the humidity. Then, just as I was approaching mile marker 9, an overzealous runner coming up behind me clipped my left heel.
My outstretched right leg crunched down hard as I tried to steady myself and not face plant into the concrete hill rising in front of me. I caught my bearings as pain shot through my knee and up my leg. I cursed under my breath as the runner who tripped me up passed with an apologetic(?) [I hope - since he showed no sign of slowing down to see if I was ok] wave. I collected myself and convinced myself I could walk it off. With each step I became more and more sure my knee would snap in half - the pain was intense and scared me. I hobbled a little way, up to and past the 9 mile marker and convinced myself the remaining 4 miles could be completed albeit slowly. I attempted a run, which only aggravated my knee further, and at 9.5 miles, with tears welling in my eyes, I admitted defeat.
As I said earlier, I spent some time on the couch teary-eyed and disappointed with ice packed around my elevated knee. The pain aside, I was REALLY disappointed to not finish the race and to not finish my 20 miler. This is my first DNF. I felt so good and was doing well, and I’m angry that that was derailed, and that I couldn’t convince myself to try to push through the last few miles and finish what I started.
Running is in my head at the moment, and not in a good way. My knee is feeling a little bit better today and I’m less hobbled, but will likely wait until tomorrow or Wednesday to test it running. Until then, I have to get my mind right. The NYC Marathon is in less than a month.
Back in the race-running game!
I haven’t run in a race since my 25k-turned-5k-due-to-stress-fracture in May. I’ve been less than good with my marathon training. Between school and an overwhelming unhappiness with running, I really struggled to get myself in training mode. Not good. BUT this week my runs have seem to come along and I’m slowly (and I really mean slowly - my pace is terrible nowadays) getting into it. I know it’s really late in the game to be getting into it, but better late than never.
So, tonight in an effort to get excited about running again, I signed up for Grete’s Great Gallop. It was my 3rd half marathon and falls on the day that I have 20 miles scheduled. It will be a great way to knock out 13.1 miles complete with water stations and to reacquaint myself with races. I’m sure I’ll need the refresher before marathon day. PLUS, I love the half marathon distance.
Anyone else running Grete’s on October 6?
I don’t have much on the race calendar this year, (a far cry from last year when I was constantly prepping for races to complete my NYRR 9+1) so I’m feeling a bit like a slacker.
I just registered to run the Inaugural Escape to The Palisades 5k. (They offer a half marathon, but because I’m running my 25k the following weekend, I decided against the half - obviously.) It should be the perfect solution to staving off the taper madness that I’m sure will plague me that week. It’s also a gorgeous course. I ran in the Palisades when I was training for the NYC Half last year with Team In Training and really enjoyed it.
It also sounds like I will get to enjoy the company of 94monkeys, who found the race, and Alice. (We’ve got a thing for running races outside of the city I guess… First Sleepy Hollow and now the Palisades!)
After some issues with my Garmin, I finally have yesterday’s PR 10k race uploaded…
The morning was chilly. I usually make sure to have my bib and everything pre-race to avoid the hassle of getting it taken care of on race day. (One less thing to worry about a few more minutes of sleep.) This race though, I wasn’t able to make it to the 3 hour pick-up window on Friday so I arrived at the race start early. It was a chilly wait with Alice, but well worth it.
The course was in Riverside Park and it was my first time running there. I noticed how hilly it was as I walked to the start and was admittedly a little intimidated. Within the first .5 mile there was a giant hill (and the course was a double loop) so on my way up the first time I reminded myself that I would have to do it again. Leave something for later - there’s a lot of race left! I reminded myself to keep my feet underneath me and to not go crazy on the downhill, but to use it to recover instead. I think this race was the first race I have run where I really paid attention to running a smart race. I actually put thought into it instead of just running fast - and it paid off!
Official times aren’t posted yet, but my Garmin said I finished at 54:57. My previous 10k PR time was 1:01:01. (I’m really excited to see what I can do with the Coogan’s 5k and my standing 5k PR in a month.) I will update with the official time once it’s available.
**OFFICIAL TIME: 54:40 (69 of 191)
Yesterday morning I met 94monkeys, feistyred, and veggielife at Grand Central bright and early. Dressed in our super hero finest, we grabbed some coffee before hopping the train to Tarrytown. We made the short walk from the Tarrytown station to the adorable and legendary little town of Sleepy Hollow.
The morning was absolutely perfect for a run — sunny, crisp fall weather. The course was beautiful though really, really hilly. Just when you started to think the hills couldn’t get any worse or that there couldn’t possibly be any more of them, they did and there were. (Central Park has got nothin’ on some of the hills we ran yesterday.) The support along the course was fantastic. The course was residential so families stood in their front yards, coffee in hand (and some sporting costumes of their own), cheering runners on.
The race started with an appearance by Washington Irving’s Headless Horseman. It could not have been more fitting. He was also stationed at various points throughout the race watching runners as they passed.
My race was a lot of fun and this might be my favorite race I have run to date. My legs felt great at the start and I felt really strong. I had a lot of fun getting dressed up and had some good feedback on the costume. The mask was a bit much at times, and I took it off around the 5k mark before replacing it around mile 6.
Though the hills were much more than I had bargained for, I managed to finish only 5 minutes slower than my I-still-don’t-know-how-I-did-that 10k PR at the Scotland Run. This surprised me since the hills nearly brought me to my knees and I hadn’t anticipated going out to do anything but have fun. Sure, it wasn’t a PR, but it was a reminder of what fun I have while running.
After the race, we went to Old Dutch Church and Sleepy Hollow Cemetery. Alice, who had been to Sleepy Hollow before, knew much of the history and served as our own tour guide! Sleepy Hollow Cemetery is the final resting place of Washington Irving, whose famed headless horseman from Legend of Sleepy Hollow, has immortalized the small town in American folklore. Rumor has it, the Hessian soldier who lost his head when he was hit by a cannonball, and who Irving based his headless horseman character on, is actually buried near Old Dutch Church. Among the other notable interments: Elizabeth Arden, members of the Astor family and members of the Rockefeller family.
Well, it wasn’t pretty or fast, but I finished my third half marathon and NYRR 9+1 and that is all that matters.
After taking Chino on a walk that felt as long as a half marathon, I met up with Moxy and the two of us made our way up to Central Park. My calves were already feeling really tight before I left and I just hoped that I would loosen up once I got up there.
Because I’m a worry wart and am terrified of missing the start of any race I’ve registered for, Moxy and I were there with plenty of time to spare. So, we watched the end of the Norway Run and cheered runners on as they passed. Meanwhile, on the other side of the park, corrals were filling up for the half marathon and I was oblivious… Around 8:45 (the race started at 9:00) I realized that I should line up, and then realized that that meant I would need to hurry across the park to get to my corral. After running through the throngs of people, I settled into the corral and waited for the green light.
The race itself was rough. There’s not much more I can say about it. I fought myself the entire time. My usually squeaky clean racing thoughts and positive internal monologue must have taken the day off. I battled doubt and cramping legs and an improperly fed body. My lack of appetite and failure to eat enough this week became really apparent, and if it had not been for Moxy and her gift of Clif Shot Bloks around mile 9, I don’t know that I would have had anything left in the tank to finish.
Was this my best race ever? Certainly not. Did I have fun? No, not really. Did I stick to the plan and finish what I started? You bet. And that is what makes me feel better about my abysmal time, and my failure to keep my emotions and head space in check. I feel better knowing that I could have given up, but I didn’t let myself. I knew that anything less than finishing would not have been acceptable.
After the race, I picked up a bag of ice and ran a bath of the coldest water my faucet could muster. After a good, but very chilly soak in an ice bath, I showered for real and I’ve settled in for an afternoon/evening of football and lots of icing. My ankle is a bit of a mess. I’m actually a little concerned about it, but I will ice it and see how things go.
I was tickled to find an email from my employer in my inbox this morning that wasn’t about something lab-related or Grand Rounds-related. Instead, I received word that Columbia, more specifically, Columbia University President Lee Bollinger, is hosting a 5k fun run next Friday that is open to all faculty, staff and students! SIGN. ME. UP.
Now I just need to try to convince my coworkers to go with me and I also need to figure out where I’m going to shower before going into work…