Monday, April 29, 2013

2013 Run As One

I haven't run a New York Road Runners race in Central Park since December 2011! I've run other races in Central Park and NYRR races elsewhere in the city (Coogan's in 2012), but it has been a while since my last 4 mile run around that park. I signed up for the Run as One for Lung cancer research and awareness the day before the race because I really enjoy running for this cause and because I needed a kick in the pants. My running has felt sluggish and my legs have been aching, so I needed to shake off some serious cobwebs.
I had a goofy morning, probably because I haven't raced in months, where everything seemed to be going wrong. My beloved A express train isn't running in my neighborhood on the weekends this month, so I had to leave extra time for the replacement shuttle bus (which contained a number of runners) and I decided to take the 1 train to 72nd because it always runs local, vs the A which doesn't stop at 72nd. Anyway, my route probably means nothing to my readers outside of NYC, but let's just say it wasn't the way I normally get to Central Park. I noticed when I got on the 1 train that my Garmin said it was 6:58 am. I thought "Oh good, plenty of time.... Waaaait a minute, I left the house at 7:05" and I realized my watch was frozen. I didn't carry my phone or a bag because I didn't want to check a bag, so I didn't know what time it really was, but the bigger problem was MY GARMIN WAS FROZEN. I didn't have PR plans for this race, but I didn't really want to run without my watch. It had been too long since my last race and I needed to pace myself. Damn. I tried resetting it to no avail. Oh well. My stomach felt unsettled, probably from gulping down my coffee and breakfast and my legs were sore from my 11+ mile hilly run on Saturday. This felt like a bad idea...
Once I got to the park, used the bathroom at the Le Pain Quotidien (they were searching runners using the port-o-potties), and ran into Elizabeth for the second time this week, things got much better. She fixed my Garmin and we chatted and joked around until it was time to get in the corrals. I lost her when she checked her bag (I came empty handed because the security was tight and I didn't want to have to stand in line) and I stretched out by myself in the corral. Systems check: right calf and foot uber sore, quads sore from Sat run, couldn't find my inhaler, allergies in full force. Okay, I was ready to run.
The race went very quickly, I was creaking and feeling all sorts of self doubt for the first mile. People were passing me and my right foot was aching (this isn't new) and I pictured myself just running to the train and going home once I hit the 102nd St transverse. Luckily, things started to get easier and I was feeling more confident as I ticked off mile 2 in about 7:12. I thought, "oh, right, this feels hard because I'm running fast. That's okay." Mile 3 was the stretch along the west side with the 3 rolling hills,which I cursed a bit because my calf was still aching and my foot hurt, but I still survived and kept it under 7:30. Once we passed the top of the 3rd hill and mile 4 was underway, I felt like I was finally running with ease. I brought the pace back down to the 7:12 range and finished up at a 6:30 pace on the final stretch, yet I still got beat by an 11 year old boy who out kicked me in the final minute. Good for him.
This was my first race in the 30-34 age group and I placed 20th in my AG and 111th for women overall. Not bad for missing my PR by nearly 2 mins. It took me a while to get into a groove on Sunday and I wasn't feeling very competitive, but by the final mile I had my mojo back and stayed strong. I'm in no way disappointed, in fact I'm still just proud that I didn't run to the subway instead of towards the finish at 102nd St.
I obviously have a long way to go before the race I signed up for on Thursday night- I'm all registered for the Toughman Half Ironman on Sept 8th. Look out, I'll be back out on my bike soon!

posted from Bloggeroid

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