Bored of typical races? I’ve never actually completed an obstacle course-type race, but the Spartan Race, I’m told is the granddaddy of them all. Run, jump over assorted objects, get down and dirty. Put your cross training to use or try a new challenge. I was given a coupon code for 15% off of ANY of their races. Check it out using the link HERE! Happy racing!
I know it’s not a lot, but it’s a LOT better it had been in previous weeks. Now, I’m 178.2 and much better with consistency. Yay me!
Quick, cheap, FUN 5k race on Fort Hamilton Military Base in Brooklyn. If you’re fast, you can probably place! Check it out! Nice cozy race, no swag. And at $4, none necessary. For a review of a race I went to in 2011, click here.
Fort Hamilton Army Base Speed Series #1 – 5K
Date: Tuesdays at 7:00 p.m. starting on May 7th until the end of August
Location: Fort Hamilton Army Base, 101st Street and Fort Hamilton Parkway,
Baggage check, beverages and refreshments will be provided. For more info, click here.
It’s been a long time. I’m getting divorced (not my choice) and after moping, moving and getting my head back together, I’ve focused on my health and running. So, that means that I’m back! I’ll post some pictures at some point, but I am tired of posting “before” pics and I’m ready to post “after” pics.
I’ve had a nice long break from running, post-marathon laziness, then I had about 2 months of bronchitis, from which I’m mostly recovered. Back in the swing of things. I’m a bit heavier than I was at this time last year (4lbs, now 178). Could be better, could be worse, but I’m a ok. And when better to press “reset” than at the beginning of the year?
Goals this year are:
Yes, that’s it. I have a lot on my plate this year, so I decided to keep it simple and attainable.
Happy and Healthy 2013 to you!
What are your goals this year?
This past Saturday, I spent some time in the Rockaways, where I ran my Half Marathon in September. The Rockaways were devastated by Hurricane Sandy. The boardwalk is gone and only the concrete pillars stand. As you probably already know I’m not much of a techie. But my friend who came to help made a photo journal of our experience there on 11/10, he’s titled it Occupy Sandy “Rockaway”, click here or use this link: http://www.backspac.es/r/YYY31YiH9A
Done! With limited training, I finished the 2012 Chicago Marathon uninjured. I can safely say I’m never doing that again. I love the half. 5:24 and some change, 57 minutes faster than Philly Marathon ’11 when I was injured. Sloppy, but I’ll take it. Will report more later.
I got a GPS watch because I wanted to be able to switch up my route on the fly and keep track of my mileage easily without manually hitting the button for splits. (My Timex Marathon GPS has automatic splits, at every mile, or another pre-selected increment offered.)
When I lost my charger last week, the thought of going back to my Timex Ironman non-GPS watch for a race was unpleasant. I was able to get a replacement watch in a hurry.
I am a non-techie. Really. But it was super easy to set up the watch. I downloaded the Soleus software (which actually does suck) and I plugged my charger in, and pressed one button. Viola! It worked. All of my data was now on my computer, complete with maps and everything. If I wanted to put it in the cloud using another website, I could export and upload the files, I suppose. At this point, running is still fun and I don’t want to create another job for myself to track, upload, etc., but it’s great to know I have that option.
Late last night, I found myself Googling “marathon in 30 days” “marathon in a month” and “marathon no training”. Not much promising came up.
Last year, I ran/walked/hobbled the Philly Marathon. Why? ‘Cause I already signed up for it and I already told too many people I would. I was proud that I finished, but had an unremarkable time. Actually it was less than unremarkable, it was 6 hours and twenty-something minutes. Do the seconds even matter when it’s that slow? At many courses, the sweep van would have come to get me and aid stations would have been packed by then. I finished my first half in about 2:30. And it took me almost 4 hours to finish the second half because of a strained hip. I never once thought of quitting. (The fact that it was perfect running weather helped a lot in my decision.)
Immediately afterwards–yes, even the slow people get a finisher’s medal–I decided I would never run another marathon. And the very next day, I found myself plotting my “revenge”. Early this spring, I signed up for the Chicago Marathon aiming to finish in under 5:30.
It sounded good when it was so far in the future.
Fast forward to today. It’s less than a month to go. My longest run is 14 miles. My highest mileage week is less than 30. At least I’ve been keeping up with strength training and flexibility. That has to count for something, right? I know the answer is yes, but I know that it doesn’t count for proper marathon training. Am I still going to run/walk it when I am almost early-middle age and know better? Yes.
I thought I was the only one who would do something. Except, I read a post today about Annie, she finished Philadelphia last year. It was her first marathon too, and she finished around the same time as me. She wanted to finish around 5:30 too. She chose to run Philly again–I chose Chicago. And now she’s having issues completing her long runs. Me too! Except my issues are mostly laziness-related. Without her name and personal details, I’d have thought I was reading my blog.
Lucky for her, she has six additional training weeks until the moment of truth. She has time to do it right.
I do not. My moment of truth is October 7, less than 4 weeks away.
Soon, I will keep you updated on my plan of action, which I can say for certain, includes flying to Chicago, picking up my bib and taking my place in the starting line. I plan on completing a marathon, but I’m pretty sure that I won’t run a marathon.
Rockaway Runs Labor Day Half Marathon, Rockaway, NY
7:00am, Saturday, September 1, 2012
Temperature at start: 80 degrees, 60-something percent humidity
2:32:23, or 11:37mm
On Saturday, September 1, I ran the Rockaway Runs Labor Day Half Marathon in Rockaway Beach (Queens), NY.
I got there early to check in and get my bib. Right in the parking lot, I saw a co-worker, which was really cool. After checking in, I ran into two racing friends, and we all chatted briefly. Something interesting is that there were no “bibs” in the traditional sense. It was a mylaps timing system inside of a clear-ish plastic zip-loc type bag that we pinned on. The numbers were four digits and written on the plastic bag in red sharpie. I wish I had a picture of it, but I put my phone away by then.
The course was small, about 300 starters. The person didn’t have a bullhorn or anything so it was an awkward start because the only way I knew to start running was that people in front of me started going. No bells. No whistle, no air horn.
Anyway, the course was a 2.1mi loop, followed by an 11mi loop. It was run entirely on the boardwalk, and given my disdain for hills, I thought it’s be perfect. It wasn’t exactly flat as a pancake, but it was pretty close. I didn’t realize something very important about the course until I started running it: boardwalk=no shade. No shade on even a moderately hot day can seem much worse. Oooppss.
I took off cautiously and was attempting to pace myself. In hindsight, I think that was a bad move. As the day went on, the hotter it got. If I had to do it again, I’d run faster until I couldn’t run anymore, then start walking. I ran through miles 7-8 and ran-walked the rest. I attempted to start running faster for a bit, but I was too miserable in the heat.
There was a very long stretch without any water at all, and on a sunny, hot and humid day, it was difficult. More than once, I poured water on my face, arms and down my shirt to keep cool. It worked slightly better than nothing. When I tried to speed up, I literally asked myself “do you want to slow down or do you want heatstroke”. I chose to slow down.
At the end of the race, they collected the “bib” for re-using. I think it was brilliant. Beyond my swag, there was no medal. No tech tee. No Gatorade, no bananas. Just an old electronically timed race. For swag, I got a tshirt, cookies baked by a local company and flip flops. For $22, it was a good value for a timed race.
Final time was 2:32:23, a few seconds faster than my first half marathon and 12 mins slower than my May Half. I am ok with it. This was my fifth Half Marathon and 22nd race overall.
One criticism though, there weren’t enough water stations. There was a long stretch of 3, possibly 4 miles that was barren. I could possibly be exaggerating, but I didn’t want to think of how long it was while I was running. When I finally came upon the water station, I said, “boy am I glad to see you”. And it was true. There were fountains up and down the boardwalk, but that could have potentially been very dangerous.
I think I say this to myself directly after each summer race, but no more summer racing. For real this time.