Monday, February 22, 2010

Run for Haiti, NJ Style

When I signed up for the Haiti Run virtually, I assumed I'd just do my 4 miles as part of a longer run on Saturday with my running group (oh fat cat just layed across my forearm, making this rather difficult to type... get off fatty) but then I got an invite to a lifelong friends baby shower and my plans changed. I also got a call from mom reminding me that my car needed to be inspected asap (it lives at her house in Jersey) so I figured I'd run for Haiti by way of NJ.

I got lucky and my wonderful friend SF lent me her car for the ride down, saving me lots of hassle via the Port Authority so my Friday got much easier! I trekked down to Jersey in the blinding sunshine and was feeling nostalgic for summer rides down to the beach. Despite the crazy piles of snow everywhere, I couldn't stop thinking warm, summery, sandy, salty thoughts. Ahh, I'm a sucker for a good beach day. My bliss bubble burst when I hopped in my car and rode past the 2-3hr line at the inspection station... umm no thanks. I pulled in, checked the schedule and noted that they opened at 7am on Saturday. This was going to suck but I knew what I needed to do. I couldn't expect mom to get it inspected for me, especially since I knew it was doomed to fail. (Blasted "Service Engine Soon" light has been on and off for years despite frequent maintenance). I was bummed because I pictured myself doing a sunrise 4 miler on the boardwalk with the fiery sunrise exploding over the ocean... but then I remembered the snow. I checked the Seaside Boardwalk webcam and noted the knee deep snow, crap. Foiled again.

In the end I sucked it up, dragged myself out of bed at 6am, got coffee and tweeted to keep myself awake while waiting in a (much shorter) line at the inspection station. I waited 45 mins for a 4 min inspection fail. Awesome. Things were icy when I arrived home at 7:30 so I snoozed a bit, the new plan forming in my head- I would run the 4 miler at 9am like the rest of my peeps. I know a perfect 4 mile loop from Mom's house, so I hit the road at 9. I told mom to expect me back in 30 mins or so because there was no way I would get close to my PR (28:42) in a non-race situation. I just didn't think I had the same amount of excitement to push me along. What I didn't anticipate was the complete lack of crowds and obstacles to slow me down! I hit the one and only hill in mile 1, cranking out a 7:33 and I though, okay this feels fine. The running demon voices started to get louder as I crossed into mile 2 and they told me to pick it up for no other reason than because you can! So I did... it hurt, my tibialis anterior began to burn and tighten and I wanted to die and my lungs were burning, but hell, it was only 4 miles! I sucked it up big time and trudged on. Mile 2 was a burning 7:00, followed by mile 3 at 6:58 and then a blistering 6:55 took me home via mile 4. The snow was a factor, I had to run in the street which I normally don't do while I'm in NJ because the drivers are...well, they're Jersey drivers. I encountered a recycling truck in my path, plenty of snow and icy patches, but I came in with a PR of 15 secs at 28:27!! Mom was happy for me and I was more shocked than happy. It hurt, ow. My lungs were burning, I wheezed a little later in the day and coughed a lot. It was like a flashback to last year with the asthma and I wasn't happy about that. I was a little nauseous and blah, but I put on my game face and hit the road. There was a baby shower to attend! It was a lot of fun, there were lots of really cute little gifts and my friend looks fantastic. I got to see a number of friends from a past life which was really fun too.
By the end of the day I was feeling a little sense of pride in my PR, I kicked my own ass for it and I needed to OWN it. Go me. It wasn't until Sunday when I returned home and entered my time into the Haiti run database that I noticed I was on the same results PAGE was Paula Radcliffe and I was only 27 seconds behind Shalane Flanagan!!! Oh crap that was cool. GO ME! :)


  1. Impressive PR. Much harder to do on your own than in a race with other people to push and pull you. Congrats!

  2. THAT. IS. AWESOME. Who knew you could get a P.R. in an NYRR race in Jersey? Haha! No line, no crowds? Maybe that's the ONLY way to PR in a NYRR with 9000+ entrants. Very nice, Amy! I hope they send you a P.R. medal of some sort so you can show it off to the kids! =)

  3. Way to go! You rocked that 4 miler! (btw my first marathon was the NJ marathon)
    : )

  4. Congrats Aimster on an awesome Haiti run and outstanding PR!!! I am soooo proud of you my friend that you pushed yourself to the limit and beyond. WAY.TO.GO!!!!!

  5. Congrats on your PR lady! Thats awesome. Getting car inspections totally suck! My failed this year too! Such a pain