Sandy

They say that Sunday’s marathon is still happening. Sure, New Yorkers are resilient and the show must go on. On one hand the race brings over $350 million to the city, especially during a time when small businesses need it. On the other, it also seems wrong to shut down the city and take medical professionals and rescue officials away from recovery and rebuilding efforts. I’m conflicted.

I am one of the lucky ones to have power, heat, food, my home and no personal damage done. If I run on Sunday, I will run with a greater purpose. I will run for my great city.

I couldn’t get to Manhattan but here are some shots of the Sandy aftermath from Astoria.

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20

We’re 20 days away from the big race, the ING NYC Marathon, and this weekend I ran my last (successful) 20 miler. I’m sure you’re tired of hearing me talk about this one race. Every time I post something on Facebook or Twitter about how many miles I ran, I’m pretty sure someone is rolling their eyes as much as I roll my eyes after reading someone’s political rant status update. So we’re even.

This post isn’t so much about the run itself, but rather why this particular run was better than all the others. A big big big THANKS to my friends Lisa at Early Morning Run and my Cherbrale (and her boyfriend Nick who was there in spirit) for meeting me at different points along the 20 miles and not letting me walk. Having to meet them at certain points by a certain time helped me stay on track and finish under four hours. It meant a lot that these folks would spend part of their weekend, outdoors on the coldest day yet in NYC, running with me.

It’s always nice to know that friends and family support you. I know mine  support me and my goals 100% but many of them have never seen me run a race. Remember those days when your mom and dad came to your recital or game? You didn’t make a deal about them being there, but you definitely noticed when they were not. There’s something about the human spirit that is contagious. Isn’t that why we cheer for our favorite baseball team? We, the spectators, believe and know that our spirit and encouragement can sometimes lift the team out of the pits. We have faith when the athletes themselves don’t.

There are runners around you, or just people in general, who need your support and faith. Will you cheer for them?

Me? I will be fine.

Marathon Outfit: Option 1

With just 27 days away from the marathon, I’m preparing the most important component for the race: my outfit. I’m not joking. I don’t select workout clothes based on what looks cute, although it helps. Workout gear has to be performance enhancing, not inhibiting. Nothing that chaffes- which is why you’ll never see me run a long-distance race in shorts. What do you think of option 1? Your comments will help me decide what to try and what to consider when selecting the final outfit.Marathon Option 1

Marathon Countdown: 33 Days

I realized the other day that I had 40 days ’til the ING NYC Marathon. Little did I know I miscounted and had 38 days. Now I have 33.

I ran 20 miles this weekend. Actually, I ran, came home and realized on Map My Run that I only ran 18 so I went back out and ran another two. My body hurt. Literally locked up. And while I wanted to lay on the couch, I heard my physical therapist’s voice in my head reminding me to ice my Achilles. She made me look her in the eye and promise so I got my butt up and waddled to the freezer. I pay too much money for PT twice a week for me to screw it up over some ice.

Same thing with food. While I had the urge to inhale a beer and pizza (carb loading at its best) because I “deserved” it, I knew that a pizza wasn’t going to make me feel better. I needed something to restore and repair, so I opted for some fresh fruit, fish, and leafy greens. I’m so glad I did because I seem to have recovered faster than other long runs.

These are such simple things, but they made a huge difference.  I work too hard, you too, to mess it all up with malnutrition (or not icing). Like I’m training my body to run great lengths, I’m having to train my body what to do afterward for optimal recovery and what to eat. It’s equally important. It just got serious. 33 days!

 

I’m In! Lessons Learned from A Marathon Qualifying Race

You’ve probably noticed that I’ve been silent. While I’m talkative and outgoing, I’m very silent when things get hectic in my life. It helps me process and handle the chaos. I’ve been on the road traveling for work this month and things have finally settled down after this week.

Saturday I qualified for my second NYC Marathon by completing the nine races required.  Woohoo! But it didn’t come easy. Not just because it was a 15k. Let me back up a bit.

After spending  two weeks following an artist around the country promoting an album, I flew to LA for a few important meetings. I flew in Thursday morning from NYC and flew out Friday night, landing in NYC at 6 am on Saturday morning. That’s right. Yours truly took a red-eye and then headed straight to the Ted Corbitt 15k (about 9+ miles) race to qualify for the 2012 NYC Marathon.

Everyone and their mother told me I was crazy.  While I automatically responded that I’d be fine, I was wrong. I WAS crazy. I lacked sleep, had no fuel, and my legs were killing me from being on a plane for six hours. I went to Central Park lacking the confidence to run the 9+ miles and almost gave up on my marathon dream. But instead, I sucked it up convinced myself that I’d at least try. If I ran three miles and really felt like I couldn’t finish, then I would allow myself to go home. But I finished. The race absolutely sucked and my time reflects it, but I finished. But having been so painful, I will carry these lessons learned with me for the rest of my life:

1. Don’t wait ’til the last minute. I had to do this race because there were very few qualifiers left in 2011. Sure, I could have run another race, but the last qualifier is NYE night at midnight in Central Park. :/ I have a tendency to procrastinate in all that do. It’s probably because I’ve always made it work somehow. But as I get older, I’m learning that procrastinating has its own unique consequences. Whether in life or wellness, never prolong what can be done now. It may be too late!

 

2. Fuel properly. I had oatmeal for breakfast. That’s what I always eat. But eating the same oatmeal before a 15k was probably not smart. Why would I think that eating the same amount of food would carry me through an almost-half-marathon?

 

3. Lower the bar…a bit. The idea of running 15k Saturday morning was daunting. But telling myself to run three miles and having an exit strategy ready, put my mind at ease. So the next time you don’t feel like working out, tell yourself to go to the gym for 20 minutes. Chances are once you’re there, you’ll want to do more. If you don’t, then it’s probably your body telling you that it needs rest.

 

4. Love what you do. My boyfriend asked me if I enjoy getting up early to run races? The answer is hell no. I am a sleeper. I fear becoming a parent not because of the huge responsibilities, but rather the lack of sleep that follows. I may not love waking up before the sun rises, but I love WHY I do. Waking up early is a circumstance  of wanting to qualify for a marathon. Racing makes me feel good. It empowers me. I love the strangers who surround me. We all have to do crappy things in life, but make sure there’s a “love” reason for enduring them. Otherwise, it’s not worth it.

 

5. Believe in yourself, always. Plain and simple. Everyone else thought I was crazy. Sure, I was but I didn’t let others get to me. I knew I could do it. Had I doubted myself from the beginning, I probably would’ve gone home that morning.