Happy Spring!
Never thought Winter would officially end…Started my day yesterday like this:

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Then I got the spring cleaning bug so i tidied up a bit and even vacuumed. I ran around town taking care of a few errands. Unfortunately I noticed some new noises (and smells) coming from the Jeep. I’m really bummed. I’ve been dropping money in boatloads to fix her but she’s just on her last legs. She’s almost at 100,000 miles. (that’s a lot of marathons!)

Later in the afternoon I met my friend and her dogs for a 2 1/2 mile walk.┬áThat’s when Duncan’s “ear barometer” let me know how windy it was outside.

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I knew I had planned to run 6 miles in the evening and started to get anxious about the wind. We all know how it’s been my nemesis the last few weeks. (I talk about that here and here and here)

But I made dinner plans with another friend and had limited time, so I couldn’t afford to drive to the gym and back taking precious moments away from what I needed to cover the miles. I got dressed, grabbed my music which I figured would be the only thing to carry me through and just bolted out the door.

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Maybe it was the pressure of knowing I HAD to be ready in an hour and a half to go to dinner but somehow I FLEW! There were 23 mph sustained winds with gusts up to 34 and they were headwinds for the first 3 1/2 miles:

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I did it! my vindication over wind….my WINDication!!!! #SpringIsIn10K

I kept a 9:31 average pace! HELLO! That’s almost my 10k PR pace. I call that WINDication! Free of the fear that wind will ruin my run.

And of course that called for a celebration. So I opted for dessert…

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it may be a chain restaurant but this dessert did not dissappoint! Vanilla gelato and whipped cream and chocolate sauce over a warm chocolate chip cookie.

Have a great weekend! Tell me what you’re doin’….

Yep, I had to start yet one more post about my gripe with the wind (I don’t beat dead horses and I don’t beat living horses because I’m humane).

OK so a little recap about how today went.

IT WAS WINDY!

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And now I’ll delve a little deeper…

At 4:30am the alarm went off. I got up but this guy didn’t budge.

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I got dressed, took a selfie in my messy kitchen and was on the road by 5:30am.

when your number is 20725 you know it's gonna be a big race (over 20,000 runners big!)

when your number is 20725 you know it’s gonna be a big race (over 20,000 runners big!)

I parked the car midway between the start and the finish of the NYC Half and was up and running by 6:25am. Caught this shot of the Empire State Building decked out in Green for St. Patricks Day.

Empire State Building as seen from 22nd and 7th

Empire State Building as seen from 22nd and 7th

The plan was to run 2.5 miles before meeting my friends near the start. Well, the Garmin lost satelite because of some scaffolding so I wasn’t sure until I got home how far I actually went. I mapped it out on Runkeeper and it turns out I covered exactly 2.5! I’m guessing my pace was around 10:30-11 minute miles).

JD, Lisa, Gary and Roger

Joined my peeps (although we missed Cindy!) at 58th and 6th…JD, Lisa, Gary and Roger

Once the group met up we entered Central Park and headed to our corals. It was actually a full 1/2 mile (10 city blocks) to get to the corals! It was really crowded and we had to go through some metal detectors which I have to say was not my favorite part of the day. But it’s just part of the new normal.

Roger had his customary Sausage McMuffin and a Mountain Dew for his pre-race fuel! Gotta love it!

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One last photo op before we all parted ways.

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My goal for the race was to stay as close to 10:40 min miles as possible. Somehow I managed to finish in 2:15:25 which meant I ran 10:20 miles. Sweet!

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But it was rough. I was cold the entire time, Central Park hills never get any easier and the wind was insane! (I think I might have touched on that already) I almost lost my hat on 3 occasions.

The race gave me a good feel though for how I want to attack my marathon next month. I walked through water stops (I think I hit 5 or 6 stops) and still maintained that 10:20 pace. My entire left side is a mess. I’m sure it’s all connected so i really nead to focus on my form and stretching and foam rolling. I felt tighness in my left glute, hamstring, and ankle. Oh, and my neck started to spasm a bit. It was definitely a combination of being cold and tense. Also, the visor on my baseball cap came down so low that I think I tilted my head back a little just to see.

I really wanted to zone out, listen to my music and just enjoy the miles but that just didn’t happen. There were glimmers here and there when I got in a groove and had a smile on my face. But even as I ran through Times Square I was just not feeling it.

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Some fun sights:

  • Back of a guy’s shirt that simply said “Always look on the bright side of life”. I needed to see that. Our lives are not one sided. We might have one side that isn’t so bright at the moment but we should focus on the brighter side.
  • Seeing separate spectators dressed as a gorilla and a banana. I wanted to tell the gorilla that the banana was only 3 blocks away. I wish I took pictures! I also spotted Waldo (with a sign that said “you found me”)

When I crossed the finish line I knew I had only covered 15.5 miles and needed to continue running to 18.

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yay done! Sort of….

But they made us walk for a long time out of the finisher’s area and by the time I got my medal and my “recovery bag” with apple, pretzels, water etc I was cranky and sore and not in the mood to run. I thought I’d start walking back uptown to my car and if I felt better i’d run. Well, I never did run. I walked for 2.5 miles, stopped at Starbucks for breakfast (I was SO hungry. Only ate one bag of sport beans and had a few sips of gatorade during the race) and to defrost.

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I waited forever for this caramel macchiatto. The barista said “thank you for your patience”. I was not patient in my inside voices but i held it together

It was so cold and windy and my heat sheet wasn’t staying put:( After breakfast I continued to walk one additional mile until I FINALLY reached my car. So I did cover close to 20 miles but I only ran 15 1/2 ish….Frankly I’m ok with that. I had a great 16 miler 2 weeks ago and I still have a 20 miler to bang out in 2 weeks.

Lesson learned: ALWAYS do extra mileage BEFORE the race.

My splurge for the day. BBQ.

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ribs and garlic bread! yes please!

It looks like I’ll actually be able to keep my midweek training on schedule with a 5 mile hill workout on Tuesday. Next race is the Love Run (1/2 marathon) in Philadelphia 2 weeks from today.

Question: Do you prefer big races or small? Or are you equal opportunity? I like both but I think smaller races are just easier logistically. Bigger races build excitement more though.