Posts Tagged ‘running’

yay for america and brick workouts!

Hello, Monday! 

Most of you might not be that cheer-y over the fact that it’s the Monday after a holiday weekend, but can I make you feel better by telling you that I worked last night?  And that you too can survive going back to work after a long weekend?  Not sure if that helps, but it’s the truth.  And at least you have my ramblings to entertain you…let’s just go with that.

Luckily, I got to experience most of the holiday weekend, as a coworker wanted to switch to work my Saturday in return for a night off during the week (please note:  this type of switch is UNHEARD OF).  So I said yes, took one for the team, and got Saturday night off.  Life is good minus the fact that I couldn’t fall sleep before 3am on most nights, leaving me to ponder the meaning of life at odd hours of the night (never a good idea) before giving up and watching Orange is the New Black.

But in other news, having the weekend off was nice for seeing-friends-purposes, as well as for training purposes.  So we discuss.

The rain leading up to the Fourth of July canceled the picnic plans we had hoped for on the holiday, so we had a change of plans.  I squeezed in 20 miles on the bike at the gym before indulging in some World Cup watching and wing eating.  (Haven’t had wings in awhile…definitely need to do that more often.  I may have a degree in dietetics, but you should probably refer to the real RD for nutrition advice…everything in moderation, right?)  When it got closer to firework time, Abbe and I headed over to the east side (on the Upper East Side) to check out the view for the fireworks and relayed the plan back to the rest of the group.  We then grabbed a drink before it was time to actually head over for the fireworks.  I had mentioned that maybe we could get up on the Queensboro bridge to catch the fireworks, so with minutes to spare, Abbe, me, and our full of wings and beverages bellies ran down the east side and up on the Queensboro.  (That’s quite the bridge, in case you were wondering.)  Luckily we made it in time and we had a limited view of the fireworks, as I imagine anyone above the Manhattan Bridge had.  That little curve in the island will get you.  That being said, watching the fireworks from a bridge was pretty cool, even if buses flying by blocked the view now and then.  Overall, I’ll take it.

photo 1 (12) Not even Instagram can help this picture.

I’ll also be counting that little run down the East River as one of my workouts for the week, as I spent much of the week exhausted and therefore not getting in workouts.  I worked on Wednesday night and therefore had big plans to get in a run or swim on Thursday afternoon/evening, but it took all I had to even get out of bed at a normal hour ("normal" meaning 3pm-ish…so I wouldn’t be up all night, ha).  So that didn’t happen.  But with a full Saturday open to enjoy myself, I looked forward to getting in a long ride and maybe even a brick run!

I had such good intentions of getting up at a reasonable hour on Saturday and getting out to ride (with the normal people of the world), but I was up until about 4am, so I slept until noon and left around 1pm.  Luckily, NYC gets a little empty on holiday weekends so nothing was too busy.  I took my bike and my clipped in shoes (!!) up and over the GW to see what a long ride would be like with these fancy shoes.  I actually find it a bit of an ordeal to get up and over the GW because there’s so much starting and stopping (or at least for me because I’m so paranoid about being hit by a car).  You’re already eight miles into the ride before you can really get going!  But I made it across the bridge with no issues and took off on 9W.  I will say that I can definitely feel a difference riding with the clipped in shoes versus without…I feel so much more powerful and in control.  When going up hills, I won’t say that it feels easier because I’m still working, but more muscles are working so the effort is different.

My plan was to do 40 miles, but I hit the state line at 19 miles…and remembered that you go down a huge hill right after that, and I didn’t want to go down it just to turn around and climb back up it.  I took a break, considered my options, and checked Facebook (obviously…) and saw that my mom had posted this…

image Of course I commented that I was in the middle of a 40 mile ride…but you go, Mom!

After spending five minutes trying to clip my right foot back into the pedal (really, the right foot is 100000x harder to clip into/out of than the left.  I should try adjusting the tension, probably?), I headed back towards the city.  I even passed a few people along the way!  I felt like I was cruising and wasn’t spending the entire time counting down the miles.  My big almost-mishap of the day was crossing back over the GW.  There are some tight 90 degree turns on the bridge, and I was taking a turn at the same time as another cyclist who was going the other way.  I nearly toppled over (my bike fell over with my right foot still attached, I remained upright) and almost took the other cyclist with me (sorry, buddy).  Perhaps I should unclip around those corners for now…

I sped back home and felt pretty good about myself…56 miles knocked me out a couple weeks ago, but I felt really strong on the 40 miles.  So I dropped my bike off at my apartment, changing into a pair of running shorts and shoes, and heading out for a brick run.  A reader suggested doing even just short run at the end of long rides to get used the transition.  I decided to try five miles (not a short run, oops) because I felt good and needed to get a run in anyway.  My legs felt like they were hardly moving, so I tried to avoid looking at my watch and instead focused on effort.  (And getting to the next water fountain – it was hot out there!)  I was surprised to find that my pace was sub-8 even though I felt like a slug.

Of course, I was so ready to be done by the time that fifth mile rolled around…definitely need to work on the nutrition and hydration game for the half Ironman, but a 40 mile ride (with increased speed!) and a solid brick run made me feel much better about the entire thing.

image Average of 14.7mph…but on the open road, it was more like 16-ish!  Woohoo!

image Apparently I ran 4.99 miles.  Oops?

It also made me feel better about ordering so much food that the delivery people sent me two sets of utensils with my meal, but oh well.  (I’ve been on a sushi kick lately, although I don’t eat raw fish – so much peanut avocado going on around here.)

Sunday included a mile in the pool (and my first venture into circle swimming – only a bit of a disaster) and baking some belated cookies.  I found a recipe for funfetti cookies (the easier recipe ever) that I was going to make for the picnic.  Since you can’t use red, white, and blue funfetti cake mix for just anything, I went ahead and made them to take to work.  Easy and delicious, and food makes people happy.

photo 2 (14) COOKIES.

And your reward for reading all my babble is the best joke I’ve heard in awhile:  Why are there no knock-knock jokes about America?

……because freedom rings!!    ba dum tsshhh!!!  You’re welcome.  Happy Monday.


07 2014

running in california

One of the biggest things I was worried about regarding the California Baseball Tour was about keeping up with training.  Unlike running, triathlon training takes a lot more work to plan, and that fact that the training plans calls for a fair amount of double workouts doesn’t exactly help.

Spoiler alert:  I was awful at training while on vacation, but I’m kind of okay with that.  The key here is that I’m not going to win any races anytime soon (especially a triathlon, have ou seen me on a bike?  ha.), and some experiences can’t be replaced.  Plus, I only get to see Eric every 4-8-ish weeks, neither of us have ever been known for going to bed before midnight, and waking up extra early and leaving him isn’t my favorite thing to do.  (Especially because he’s still in bed when I get back, ha!)

So basically, this is no sort of advice column on how to keep up with training while on vacation because I certainly didn’t keep up training…as in, I ran four times in the 12-ish days we were gone.  Oops?  Road tripping makes it a little more difficult to get in runs, as many times we were trying to roll out on the earlier side.  And by early I mean 9-10am, but when you could easily sleep until noon every day (it’s a problem, I know), then some things have to give.  Excuses?  Probably.  But so it goes.

However, this doesn’t mean that I won’t talk about running on vacation, but it actually is quite fun to do, even if it starts out with you staring at our Garmin for ten minutes before it asks you if you’ve traveled thousands of miles since the last time you used it…

photo (93) Time stands still sometimes.

In San Francisco, my runs started off trying to warm up my legs immediately by running down a giant hill, followed by a flat run along the Embarcadero, followed by running back up the giant hill.  (That part wasn’t so fun.)  Highlights included seeing Alcatraz, seeing tons of triathletes out preparing for the Escape from Alcatraz tri that happened the day we left, having some guy smoking tell me that he wanted to take my clothes off (people were around, mom, don’t worry!  I did run a little faster up that hill, though), and the seals on Pier 39.  Touristy stuff?  Check.

Obviously running is a great way to see a new city, as you can cover so much ground and reach places that you might not on a tour bus or simply by walking around.  However, one of the things I think is cool about running in new places is checking out how people dress.  Of course I wonder what SFers consider to be hot and cold, but more importantly it’s fun to check out the races shirts that go by.  When I run in a NYC Marathon shirt or a Brooklyn Half shirt in NYC, no one bats an eye.  When I wore my Brooklyn Half shirt on a run in SF, a woman yelled, “Brooklyn Half?  I ran that!  Is that from this year?”  “Yeah, great race from coast to coast!”  The shirt I’ve gotten the most comments on in NYC is my orange SF (half) Marathon shirt…I’ll admit I wear it fairly often since it’s an awesome looking shirt, but it sticks out because not nearly as many people in NYC have run it.

I see shirts I might not notice otherwise, such as someone wearing a shirt saying, “Worth the Hurt,” which references a charity run at the SF Marathon where you run the course twice.  It’s so interesting to me how races are popular in different areas of the country…obviously because of geography, but I probably take running the NYC Marathon for granted while SF trail runners probably don’t realize how jealous I am of their runs.

Of course, this is in a city run.  I went for a run before we left Monterey, and apparently Monterey is a sleepy (touristy?) town since few people were out running.  However, the few people who passed did give a “hello” or a nod, and I got a little hill workout as I explored what was on top of this windy path:

IMG_3323 Impromptu hill workout?  Why not.

Of course, this led up and over the dunes, so I was greeted by the ocean on the other side:

IMG_3322 Hello, ocean!  I would like to see you on runs more often.

The tricky part about running right before leaving a location is that I then I had to pack sweaty running clothes in my suitcase.  Luckily I didn’t stink up my other clothes too much, so life is good.

My last running location of the trip was on Camp Pendleton, where we stayed with Eric’s sister for a few days.  For the record, we were far enough inland and it was HOT.  Also, I went running at 11am because if you skipped the above sections, I’m not a morning person.  So I accept full responsibility for that, but my goodness, the heat + no shade + I pondered bringing water but didn’t = red in the face, covered in sweat from heat to toe.  I ran by a empty hospital, which seems like it could be the start of a horror movie if it wasn’t 11:30 in the late morning.  I did get a little nervous because there are roads with names like, “Rattlesnake Canyon Rd,” which only creeps me about a ton.  (Hate.  Snacks.  SO MUCH.)  Let’s talk about something else.  The run was a little hilly and very beige, as apparently the Marines are big on beige-colored things and it was pretty dry out there.  Luckily we missed the wildfires by a couple weeks since you could see the burn lines on base.  Yikes!

And that was the end of my running escapades in California…from foggy SF runs to hot runs near San Diego, you sure do have many different weather situations, California.  Getting back in the pool and on a bike this week has made me wish I kept up with training a little bit, but I had a great time in California without worrying too much about cramming training in.  Plus, I still have over three months before the big triathlon, so no worries.  I got to see some sights on the run, hang out with myself a few times (introverts, you know what I mean!), and work up a sweat.  I had an awesome vacation, and as long as I get back on track here, life is good.

What shirts stand out in your city?  We have so many NYC marathon shirts running around this city, but shirts from the bazillion races in Central Park.  Do you make sure to workout while on vacation, or just get in what you can?

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06 2014