Snowy winter: yea or nay?

Tread carefully

Tread carefully

I love winter. I love SNOW! I love playing in the snow, looking at the snow, ice skating, snowboarding, anything! Growing up in Connecticut and spending my early 20’s in the Snow Country of Yamagata, Japan has made me a snow bunny. But snow + running – that’s been a bit of “meh.”  -_-

The up side is that Central Park has been absolutely stunning in the past month. The snow froze to ice, then another layer of snow came, froze over, repeat 6 times and you get a winter wonderland right in the middle of New York City.

Found a place to stretch without climbing

Found a place to stretch without climbing

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Back on Track

Not literally though, I’m still just a park runner!

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You don’t have to know German to guess what this mug says!

 It’s already March! And while I am trying to make a lot of positive changes in my life for my future, I am also trying to keep my running steady like Freddy. Whatever that means.

I shall confess that over December after my epic 19 mile run (longest run to date), I went to Germany and just relaxed. I came back and did a few runs but boy, the AM was dark and really cold, so there was no real schedule. After the Emerald Nuts Midnight Run, and Fernando’s 10K, this relaxed running mentality persisted.

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It’s a little dark and a little cold

My new ‘schedule’ morphed into Accuweather’s “real feel” – if it was going to be over 20 degrees, I would plan on waking up to run. If it was under, I’d reset the alarm for a delightful 7:30am. After my Manhattan Half went well with a new PR, I feel justified in my choices. I did well, I never got sick, and I got some sleep.

However, this system cannot persist. My running schedule is all out of whack but I have decided to at least put the miles in, even if they aren’t in optimal order. Continue reading

My Second Half Marathon Ever

My 2nd Half Marathon was not as daunting as the first, but it was a doozy!

Happy Winter!

IMG_20130209_141311Since moving to Manhattan, I have not had the ‘luxury’ – if you will – of a CHEAP gym. Back in Brooklyn, good ole’ Dolphins was always an option. At less than $200 A YEAR, you really can’t make too many excuses not to go run on those cold, icy days. But here it’s a whole different ball game. I believe on discount, it’s about $60 per month plus an exorbitant starting up fee. Needless to say, I am not a member of said-expensive-gym, and therefore there have been more than a handful of skipped runs due to weather and lack of masochistic tendencies.

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Subway with mate

But then I had this Manhattan Half coming up at the end of January. I signed up for it last year too but bad weather declared it a “fun” run and everyone got credit for it whether they ran it or not so I skipped it, taking the credit and going to taiko practice without being a useless lump. Anyway, this  year I was determined to run it because A. Living close to the park, there is no excuse, B. It was on a Sunday thus no taiko practice afterwards, and C. I needed to run! The prep plan went swimmingly, I ate my pasta, drank a lot of water, had some fresh baked cookies a la Fernando, and went to bed early. I woke up antsy and with energy. I drank my mate, grabbed a 5-Hour Energy and a GU, and we took the subway to the start line since

Horsies in the corral

Horsies in the corral

Fernando’s leg is still bust and hey, I wasn’t too keen on running 2 extra miles prior to the 13.1.

At the start, I did a short 4-5 minute warm up. I was wearing my new awesome (and a tad expensive for someone as cheap as me) running jacket so I wasn’t too cold. My hands and face were frozen but I was ok. I couldn’t wait to get going. I squeezed into the front of my corral just before they “closed” it and made late runners go to the back. There were a lot of ‘late’ runners, probably because the advice on NYRR’s Facebook page was to “wait till the last minute to get into the corral” to avoid getting frostbit.  @_@  The race marshals even tried to shoo away Fernando for taking pics.

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Guest Blog: Fernando’s Central Park 10K!

The first real race of the year goes to Fernando!

IMG_6205As the cold, snowy & rainy winter days are passing by, I have been stricken with some sort of sickness which renders me inside. Back when I used to have my good ole’ cheap gym (Yay, Dolphin’s!) I could just hit the treadmill instead of running on ice, but I have come to terms with the weather and my wallet, and I feel ok staying in when it seems like a better idea to grab more Z’s than break my ankle or get more sick. (That being said, anyone have a recommendation for running shoes meant for such conditions?)

But that doesn’t mean I haven’t spent ample time outdoors in the park! As a matter of fact, I have run whenever possible my usual schedule, and I made myself a new ‘first’ – being the Supporter during the Joe Kleinerman 10K! And without further ado, Fernando will tell you all about his first race of the year! Continue reading