Scene on the Run: Hurricane Sandy

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New York City has a different vibe, smell, sound in the rare times it’s bracing for a big storm. It’s something I can’t quite capture in photos.

My dear friend Nelle texted me asking how I was going to prepare for the marathon with six days remaining and Sandy crashing the party. My four goals for the next few days:

1. Continue to eat clean. Yes, I want a glass of wine but I don’t want anything badly enough to ruin the work I’ve put in.
2. Don’t get injured. My running group co-leader asked how I was going to get injured if I’m tapering. He clearly does not know how clumsy I am. I bruise and bump into things way too easily. Yesterday I took a misstep and now my foot hurts. Hope it’s better by Sunday.
3. Roll out and ice the Achilles every night.
4. Remember that all the work is done. I did my last long run yesterday. Sandy is actually a blessing because she’s forcing me to rest my legs these next few days. Always remember that not much is accomplished at the last minute. Preparation is key. I am ready!

Lastly, should the NYC Marathon be cancelled for any reason because of Sandy, which is highly doubtful, I will be ok. I read tweets and status updates about how the marathon “better not be cancelled” and it angers me. If it is, it means this storm will have been devastating to the city of New York and its people. Let’s not be so self -centered fellow runners. Instead, let’s pray for the homeless and those in evacuated areas and get through the week safely.

Be well. Be safe.

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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 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 Not A Runner

We’re eight weeks away from the 2012 ING NYC Marathon and I’m experiencing achilles, feet and knee pain. Great. Eight weeks away and not this. I scheduled an appointment with a podiatrist my coworker highly recommended on the Upper West Side. Let’s call him Dr. G.

He’s lovely. He’s gentle and personal. He listened to me and my concerns, even massaged my feet a little. And then told me I’m not built to be a runner, I’m not the ideal athlete, I’m bow-legged, and need to be stronger. (Insert record player scratch).

I was offended for a milli-second. I get it, I’m not built to be a runner. I’ve spent more of my life being a couch potato than I have being active. Maybe I do have bow-legs. But I’m not going to let that stop me from running. And he knew that.

I start physical therapy next week and have to go every week for the next six weeks. Dr. G didn’t even try to convince me to quit, he’s just going to “help me be stronger.” (Let’s not ignore the fact that I’m the strongest I’ve ever been in my life.)

The point is I have to work harder than the average person to do something I love to do. But isn’t that the irony of life? What we love to do is not always what we’re most naturally inclined to do, it’s usually the opposite. Anything worth having doesn’t come easy. And that’s why it’s so rewarding and fun when you actually get to do it. That’s what makes one an athlete. Not a jersey, or a fancy contract, or actually being the best at a sport. It’s hard work, persistence, and continuously aiming to be better.

Eight weeks ’til the NYC Marathon.

I may not be the ideal runner, but I will show them what an athlete looks like.

Race Recap: Run for Central Park

Happy Monday Lean Girls! I hope you had a wonderful weekend filled with great work outs, sun and delicious fruits. This weekend I ran race #4 of the 9 I need to qualify for the 2012 ING NYC Marathon. I ran … Continue reading