Monday, August 31, 2009

The Ride to Montauk (aka the ride tropical storm Danny Pissed on)

Sat was the very wet, yet fun Ride to Montauk. This is one of my most favorite events of the year!! I have a love/hate relationship with my bike. Typically, in the past I would train a bit for this ride, then lock my bike up, never to be seen again until next season when I need to log some miles. Terrible!

This year I decided to ride with some friends from Jersey who are also in my ski house. I was pretty good with my training, and since we decided to ride 66 rather than the 100 I knew I would be good to go.

So fast forward to Fri night - crazy weather reports- a tropical storm and 70 mile an hour winds scheduled to hit Montauk, the guys decide to bail and I'm standing in the rain volunteering with the ride set up crew loading bikes into a huge truck...(all so I could ride free on Sat - so worth it!). I have to say, I wanted to bail, but volunteering and seeing so many of the riders gave me the push I needed. I had made the decision that I would start out with the Century riders then bail out at the second rest stop which is the 50 mile mark. A perfect plan.

Ok, so Sat rolls around and the winds aren't so bad, but the rain is pretty heavy at times. I'm up at 5:30, thinking I am one crazy gal, but I also felt so dedicated which is quite the opposite from my normal I head over to the start (which is less than a mile from my house...score!) and see some friends from the the Fri night volunteer detail and start pedaling. I'm feeling good, despite a strong headwind, my breaks are still working, despite the rain and I'm feeling OK, but I decide at the first rest stop to call it a day and pedal back. The rain was pretty rough and I felt good, but I also didn't want to chance anything happening so I pedaled back to Islip where I met my dad for some delish breakfast, sooo worth it!! In total I rode close to 40 miles....and the funny thing is that I desperately wanted to ride yesterday and would have had my cleats been dry!

And that my friends, is just the feeling I was hoping for! I am finally past the point of only training for events then ditching any additional activity, this is now turning into my life, and I kinda like it!

Some shots of my very dirty bike and the Corey Beach rest stop.

Thursday, August 27, 2009


I'm going to start out by not apologising for not posting! (ok, I apologise a little). I have been on vacation with some birthday loving thrown in. This has been a great week off, lots of beach, dinners out, movies (Julie & Julia and Inglorious Basterds) and fun. I've managed 2 runs (cow harbor and my normal route) as well as a 30 mile bike ride. I also started the Weight Loss Challenge, although since it's my b-day week, I haven't been too good...lot's of eating out!!

Last night was hella hot and humid! I ran the Cow Harbor Training run and got sooo sick when I got home. I am really sensitive to the heat, and I should have wore my fuel belt. Lesson learned. Today is a day off, tomorrow will probably be the gym, then off to volunteer for the Ride to Montauk. I'm supposed to ride on Sat, but we are supposed to get Tropical Storm Danny and I'm not sure I want to trek out to Montauk with 70 mile an hour winds!! The good news is that the ride is free if I volunteer...although we are getting down to the wire and I still haven't received any info on where to meet, hopefully they didn't forget about me! Grrrr...

I'll post the recap if I do manage to ride....until to enjoy the rest of my week off!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Weight Loss Challenge

I'm getting chunky.

There, I said it, OUT LOUD and on my blog.

I have lost about 40 something lbs over the last year and a half or so by following a very strict formula of eliminating sugar, flour and wheat. I went off the wagon in Nov and gained about 12lbs. I'm down 5 and I need to get the rest off of me....I'm pretty content with myself, but I really want to be as healthy as possible and that means shedding the weight.

I have seemed to reverse the gain pattern, which basically meant going on a modified version of the no S/F/W program, but I wasn't loving how I was feeling. I think my body needs good old fashioned carbs, uhh, more specifically, bread....and so here I am, eating all foods, but in moderation....and praying it goes well...(I love bready, doughy goodness and tend to over induldge).

Much to my surprise, I was extra happy to read a fellow Blogger's post offering up a weight loss challenge...I'm in and ready to go! I don't really have a specific number in mind, but I figure to really be at a good weight, I should aim for about 20lbs. So that's where I'm at. 20lbs, but no pressure, no racing against the clock. I'm doing the this the good old fashioned way - less calories in, more calories out through exercise and plain commom sense. I'm also tracking my food through Daiy Plate...Let's see if I can commit to that...although for today, I kinda liked it.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

NYC Half!!

Yikes! What a week so far!! I ran the NYC Half on Sunday, was crazy lethargic on Monday and just plain busy is good. I'm so happy with Sunday's was hot, hilly and humid, but I finished with a HUGE smile on my face. My time was 2:21:19....not too shabby.

Ok, so onto the race report:
First off, thank god for a good night's sleep! I think I was out by 9:30, which rocked as I had to be up and out by 4:30. I was really rested, had some breakfast and a shake and met up with Hapi and Chrissy (my crew who I run with and who happen to live right across the street). We picked up the rest of the gang and were off to the city. I have to say, I was completely calm and ready. We got to our corral and had a ton of time to kill, but ran into some of the guys from my running club which was nice and made the time go by.

I won't bore you with a mile by mile recap, but I will say this, miles 1-7ish were a breeze. The beginning part of the race was in Central Park, which is hilly (hence the sore quads). I felt at ease and comfortable, the worst part were the water stops - almost all of the pre-filled cups were gone, every stop in Central Park had a little wait, which was annoying, but ok.

Exiting the park around the 7.5 mile mark was by far the best part of the run. There were tons of supporters in the park, bikers with cow bells, families with signs, the works, but OMG, nothing was as magical as 5th ave. It was crazy emotional for me, to hear the roar of the crowd and all of those people, I can only imagine what the Big Event (the full) is like!!

I felt really strong up till about mile 9, right before the West Side Hwy. I half expected to crash a little here, so I tried to keep my thoughts positive and really worked on my hydration. I ended up chugging a red Gatorade which left me with a side cramp around mile 11, which is where I did the most walking. I picked it up for mile 12 and rocked the finish. I'm happy with my time, and since I was using this as a training run for the Hampton's Half in Sept, I feel confident that I will maybe come closer to my goal of finishing in 2:10.

All in all this race was a great experience! Things that I found a little annoying, like having to pick up your race packet in person, little stuff like that has been replaced with great memories...I will definitely run this next year!!

Official Race Stats:
Distance: 13.1 Miles, 21.1 Kilometers
Date/Time: August 16, 2009, 7:00 am
Sponsor: NYRR
Location: Central Park to Battery Park
NYC Weather: 77 degrees, 74% hum., wind 6 mph

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Cow Harbor Training Run #1

Last night was the first of (I think) 8 Cow Harbor training runs. These little runs RULE. It was this time last year that I really started to love running, and I really owe it to the Northport Running Club for setting up these runs.

For those who don't know, the Cow Harbor 10k race is a huge event that get's thousands of runners and spectators to come down to the little village of Northport on a Sat. morning all for the sake of running. Heck, even Ryan Hall has been here (he set the course record).

The training runs are geared to get you faster each week, there are pace leaders and charts and microphones, it's very official. Last night I joined the G group for a 10:14 pace, I should have went the faster group, as I cought up with them anyway. I managed to run the course in 1:03:19 which was ok. Last year I think I ran my first training run in 1:09 (but finished race day with a time of 59:19..holla)...something like that. I took my time and thoughtfully ran the course. I planned out all of the uphills (and OMG there are quite a few, plus the killer James St. hill) and really worked on not stopping at all but rather slowing to get my heartrate down...I have truoble with that. All in all it was a great training run.

Tonight I am headed into the city to pick up my number for the NYC Half. Although I am looking forward to the race, I keep hearing how terrible it is, that the sun and heat are always relentless and the last 3 miles you want to poke your eyes out. I'm trying to keep positive, and I've done a lot of training runs in the relentless heat, so I should be ok (I hope).

Monday, August 10, 2009

Can't Think of a Good Title...Or, The Week Before The NYC Half

Wow, sorry for the dry spell. I have been pretty good with the updates, but this past week has been insane!! Lots of stuff to do, which makes me super grateful for where I live this time of year. Was out in the Hampton's Fri, beach Sat, beach again Sun, plus a few parties and a 7 mile run. Busy busy!

So this is supposed to be my taper week, but since I'm using the NYC Half on Sun as a training run for the Hampton's half, I am going to keep up with my routine, just no long runs (which won't be difficult :)

I'm looking forward to the half so I can get a handle on what my HM time is. The last HM I ran was the More and they turned it into a fun run due to the heat, so I have no 'official' time to refer to. This weekend is supposed to be HOT, and from what I hear, it's always hot on race day, but I've been training in heat and humidity and I think I have a pretty good water/nutrition plan. I have to remember to pack salt packets, which is something I almost never do, but it should help to aid in my recovery.

The only crappy thing about this race is that I have to head into the City during the week to pick up my packet, there is no day of. I'm thinking I'll head in Thurs night and run the park, which is part of the course. I love running in the park and never really go in to run, so I figure I'll make a night of it.

Other than that, life and training is good! And I lost 5lbs....

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Last of the 2009 Summer long sucky runs!

Last night was the final Summer Series race over at Jones Beach. I'm sorry to say but I did not have as much fun this year as I did last year....I know call me Negative Nelly, but it's true. Maybe because last year was my first 'real' year running and everything was all fresh and new....who knows. BUT, and this is a big but, I learned sooo much more about my running and my attitude that in hindsight, I may agree that this was in fact the best year.....ack, too much thinking!

Ok anyway, the run was interesting, it was really hot and humid and I decided to stick with a 10 minute pace. I ran 8.5 on Sun and was soo sick after from the heat that I wanted to try and stop that from happening again (which BTW, happened, 2 hours after I was all naus, WTF?!?!). I was pretty happy that I could maintain a steady pace for 5 miles...I usually tend to fluctuate, so it was nice to see some steady endurance, and a steady HR.

The end of the race was really the highlight - after every race they give out Odwalla Bars, drinks, chips, and beer. Last night was the added bonus of heros and salads which looked great (I can never eat directly after a run). Part of the fun of the whole summer series is hanging out after. All of the different running clubs grill and relax as well as families and friends, it's a big party with the added bonus of awards for the top runners and the trip raffle....which I didn't win, whatevs...

So although I didn't have killer times, I met some amazing runners and got some great after all my bitching, I guess you could say the series was a success after all!

Oh, and before I forget, I met Tara from the Biggest Loser....we chatted for a minute and are now Facebook friends. Seriously.