Week 7 of Richmond Marathon Training 9/4-9/10

9/4: Labor Day. I woke up in the beautiful woods of Evergreen, CO to the sound of the leaves rustling and the roosters crowing. I’m kidding about the last part but there were chickens on the chalet property. I had enough time to get a run in before the post-wedding brunch, so I managed to make it to the lake and go around. Parts of the trail were closed and crossing the street with few crosswalks and some blind curves was pretty terrifying. But these views and fresh mountain air!

9/5: Early flight back to NYC, then after a nap, I managed a park loop for 5.5 miles.

9/6: The rain picked up a ton in the evening, so I headed to the gym for some treadmill miles. Despite watching the US Open (Madison Keys vs. Kaia Kanepi), I could only mentally get through 4 miles, but it was alternating easy run pace with my goal Bronx 10 Mile pace.

9/7: I attended the US Open and got to see Venus Williams vs. Sloane Stephens then Madison Keys vs. Coco Vanderweghe. I had 2 honeydeuces to drink but should have held out for Fuku, because my fried chicken grilled cheese from Melt was not worth the wait. I also ate way too much from Ben & Jerry’s but discovered how good their salted caramel blondie flavor is.

9/8: Mile High Run Club’s The Distance. I had a slightly late start and just got 5.5 miles in, but it felt like a great workout and I hit some fast paces.

9/9: Connecticut Day

Sculpture Building

Robert Indiana sculpture

Phillip Johnson’s Glass House

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Tomato Pie and Clam Pie from Frank Pepe in New Haven

9/10: I woke up late and wasn’t feeling so hot, so had to move my long run to Monday. I did 4 miles in the late morning before finally getting groceries and seeing IT at Alamo Drafthouse. Clowns remain scary.

Total: 21.7. Would have been 31.7 if my long run had happened where it should have.

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Week 4 of Richmond Marathon Training, 8/14 – 8/20

This was supposed to be a cutback week to 28 miles from last week’s buildup, but as I mentioned, I got sick last week and missed a day. So I decided to shoot for 5 days of running this week regardless and call it a building week. But then I only got 4 in.

8/14: 5.6 treadmill miles at Mile High Run Club’s The Distance class. I had a really great class even though it was a different instructor than usual. I tried to play around with the paces and not worry about overall miles covered. I struggled to get it under 7:00 minute mile on the final sprint but mainly was cruising along at faster than usual speeds.

8/15: After 3 days of running in a row, I was glad to have a rest day. I went to a Yelp Elite Event at the new Brooklyn location of Jane and it was amazing. Great cocktails, oysters, and the best fried cauliflower I’ve ever had (so, er, that makes it the best cauliflower I’ve ever had). Go figure, it’s listed on the menu as Amazing Cauliflower.

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House Cocktail for the evening

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Amazing Cauliflower

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Definitely talking about Game of Thrones

8/16: 2 miles warm up, 3.1 miles attempting but failing to hit goal half marathon pace/current 10K pace during the final Al Goldstein Summer Speed Series 5K in Prospect Park.

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8/17: AM climbing at Brooklyn Boulders. I’m not belay certified there yet, so this was just bouldering. I managed a V1 but have a lot of work to go to get back to where I was at my rock climbing peak last year.

8/18: I was hoping to get in a few AM miles but there were relentless thunderstorms all morning and again at night. On the plus side, I had an amazing food day all over Brooklyn.

Avocado toast and a chai latte at Cocoa Grinder in Bay Ridge for breakfast


Lamb and more lamb at Yemen Cafe in Bay Ridge for lunch

House-made pasta (gnudi for me) and burrata/prosciutto at Aurora for dinner

8/19: 11.23 miles long run with the group to Summer Streets.

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8/20: 6.4 miles including 2 track miles @ 5K pace, plus 2.3 miles warm up and 2 miles cool down back home. It was sunny but a lot cooler than Saturday, so I’m glad this worked out.

Total: 28.4 miles out of a prescribed 27. Actually for real getting into the 30’s next week, eek.

The Week in Workouts and Food 7/10 – 7/16

7/10: Beginner Tennis Clinic, Round 2. There were only 3 of us and we got a lot more time with the ball and working on strokes. I came home to watch The Bachelorette with my roommate then baked my 3rd attempt of my favorite banana bread recipe. The only things I’ve switched up is subbing a splash of half & half or Greek yogurt for sour cream and sometimes adding 1-2 handfuls of mini chocolate chips. It’s delicious either way! Then I’ve played around with the baking time from 1 hour to 1:15; it definitely falls apart more easily with chocolate chips and less baking time and you will need a spoon. Next time, I’m going to actually save a bit and make Banana Bread French Toast from the Run Fast, Eat slow cookbook.

7/11: 5.8 miles at Mile High Run Club’s The Distance class. This is a class PR for me, done in just over 59 minutes on the treadmill. I’m hoping to make it an even 6 miles in the future with this class. I felt really strong during the intervals and kept my easy pace easy, then sped up to 8.3 mph for the super-fast sprinting stuff. I foam rolled like a champ after, too.

7/12: (Free) SoulCycle class at their new Park Slope location. This is only my 3rd SC class ever (won free classes at the Montauk and Financial District locations in 2015 and 2016) and I really liked the instructor and the mix of people. It was an influencer ride, so someone in my running club who goes there a lot got to bring guests. I was so thankful for the opportunity to check out the studio.

7/13: Rest day since I had an early enough meeting, a work event from 5-8pm, and oh yeah, a Heat Advisory in NYC. Pass.

7/14: Unplanned rest day due to morning rain then evening laziness. Got KFC from a drive-thru for dinner after originally thinking “I want some veggies tonight” and having breakfast and lunch of cheese and carbs (everything bagel with lox scallion cream cheese and paneer bhurji, respectively).

7/15: Longish run in Central Park, 3.2 with the ClassPass group run crew, plus a little before and after. I stopped by the NYRR RunCenter after to grab my bib and hat for the Brooklyn R-U-N 5K Monday night.

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7/16: I failed at running before I cheered on E at the NYC Triathlon but ran a solid 0.1 miles with him during his first mile of the 10K, making sure he was OK and hydrated enough.

Then I went to Brighton Beach with friends to eat khachapuri and take in the waves.


Total: 11.4 miles on 2 runs out of a planned 4. Hmm. I’m not proud of low-mileage weeks like this and always feel hesitant to post about them but the truth is the truth. And sometimes you need a very, very down week. I also had a tennis clinic and spin class, both of which were awesome.

The Weeks in Workouts and Food 5/15-6/11

This is truly one of those ‘no news is good news’ situations.

I had been worried about my relatively low mileage the weeks after Broad Street Run and before the Brooklyn Half. We had a brief heat wave for a few days before the Half, which was very worrisome but kept my easy runs easy.

Mileage and running and food highlights from this month:

5/15-5/21: 21.9 miles, including a half marathon PR. Volunteered at the Brooklyn Half expo and had a great time. Went to Hey Hey Canteen twice and have now tried most of their menu.

   
 

5/22-5/28: 21.8 miles, including leading an 8 mile group run to Red Hook and not getting us lost. Had a strawberry matcha boba from The Boba Guys and it was heavenly. Tried a red velvet cake concrete from Shake Shack and had to put it in the freezer for the next day because it was so intense. Had Xi’an Famous Foods’ spicy cumin lamb noodles and the cucumber salads, which are my must-orders. Wow, I really need to take pictures of all my delicious food.

5/29-6/4: 12.4 miles, including 6.2 on my birthday 6/2. I ate a lot of amazing stuff this week, including pastrami from Ben’s Best in Rego Park, a Yelp Elite Event at Atlantic Social and some of Dale Talde’s amazing wings, AYCE hot pot, stuffed croissants from Union Fare, Ample Hills, and some of the many Momofuku Milk Bar and gummi treats my friends got me. Also, I saw Hamilton.

  

6/5-6/11: 17.7 miles, including a new 5K PR then a trip to Miami.

Easy miles during Open Run in Brooklyn Bridge Park.

New 5K PR time of 25:37 on the 7th aka Global Running Day. I’m now imagining what I could do with more even splits and without that first mile hill. 

I took it easy on the first mile, then decided to loosen up on the second, then see what I had left on the third. My previous 5K PR was 26:10 on the same course and I had a faster first mile there and a third mile at 7:55 which was my fastest mile ever in a race. 

Needless to say, seeing 7:40something was wild, especially since my recent mile PR was 7:19. I’m definitely gunning for my next mile time and 5Ks later this summer.

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In Miami the 8th-11th, we feasted. Had my new obsession, cuatro leches cake at a Cuban spot. Tried Haitian food. Had Cuban tacos from a stand after viewing murals in Wynnwood. Got the fried chicken, watermelon, and waffles at Yardbird. Went to da club. Got Vietnamese and Sri Lankan as my first meals back in NYC. East Coast Appetite, what can I say?

I also went on a humid 6 mile run along the South Beach and mid-beach boardwalk then got an açai bowl afterward.

   
    
 

The Week in Workouts and Food 5/8 – 5/14

5/8: After a triumphant Broad Street Run on Sunday, we got some Tony Luke’s on the way out of Philly. Cheesesteaks, roast pork, and fried cheese curds.

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Then I had tickets with some Californian friends to see the SF Giants play the Mets (my NY team of choice). Obviously, I got Shake Shack at Citi Field. I love trying the different concrete flavors at all the different Shake Shack locations (ok, so I’ve only been to a couple of non-NYC spots) and the Citi Field one is solid. I should really take more photos, though.

5/9: 4.5 miles at The Distance at Mile High Run Club. I was hoping to beat my old best in this class of 5.5 miles but my calves were screaming. I ended up hopping off to foam roll after the first mile or two then taking it slower overall. I finally felt warmed up by mile 3 and got some of my sprints closer to usual (~8.0 miles per hour or higher). This was my one ClassPass class for this month since I put my membership on hold to focus on running. Go figure I used it on a running class.

5/10: Rest day and I went to Trapizzino then Soft Swerve with my (Yelp) friends Allison and Lori. I had the chicken and oxtail trapizzinos and a broccoli arancini at Trappizino. At Soft Swerve, I had the Jersey City, which is their ube and coconut ice creams swirled, then topped with toasted coconut, dotted with mochi, and a free waffle chip with Yelp check-in.

  
5/11: 5 miles total of Speedwork at Red Hook Track. I got about 1 mile of warmup, 3 x 1 mile repeats, then 1 mile of cooldown. I tried to take it easy since my calves/shins were still tight. Due to the track and me still being bad at pressing lap then stop, my splits were 100m off from where my watch beeped. First mile split was ~9:20, second was ~8:40, and third was ~8:30. I want to try to do future workouts like this in the lower-to-mid 8’s.

5/12: Rest day.

5/13: Was hoping for an easy 3 but it was pouring all day. Scrapped the idea of going to the gym by 11am and just foam rolled. And ate almost an entire pint of birthday cake Halo Top ice cream.

5/14: Last long run before Brooklyn Half and I forgot to pack a gel and also just wanted to take it easy. Calves were STILL feeling tight, but felt better after the first few miles. Ended up doing 9.2 total. Of course I felt great on the final 1, but to be fair, it was all downhill.

After shower and foam rolling, I baked some marshmallow chocolate chip cookies. 

  
Total: 19.1 miles out of a predicted 27. Harumph. Let’s just pretend I’m very well-tapered.

Non-Race Workouts & Food 3/20 – 4/9

3/21: After running a PR in the NYC Half two days before, I did a few post-work recovery miles in LIC along the water, then met my friends for happy hour and a Cuban sandwich. General soreness and DOMS, but nothing too bad.

3/23: A couple easy miles to and from my friend’s place for catsitting.

3/24: I hosted my 3rd annual wine, cheese and charcuterie party, with the added bonus desserts of Cronuts, Nerds Jellybeans, and Peeps Oreos.

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Photo credit to Lori

3/25: Gaza 5K and Susan’s Goodbye. I ‘paced’ my roommate for here first ever 5K. It was a beautiful springish day. Turns out it was not a 5K, but a full loop of the park! But that’s ok because we had a great time and raised money for mental health services for Palestinian refugees.

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Photo Credit to Murray who won 1st Place Senior Male

I then added on a few extra miles after the race to say goodbye to a running club member the only way we know how: running and food. We ran to Bensonhurst to eat at Cafe Lily, which specializes in Korean-Uzbek food. We ate a feast and I got to take home some delicious kebab leftovers. I made the mistake of getting a huge taro bubble tea for the road and was so full it hurt. I’m wearing my favorite pair of tights ever, the cosmic dot print from Lululemon. These are more yoga/barre pants for me normally, but I wanted something festive.

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Photo credit to Jay

3/26-3/28: I had a sore throat on Saturday night, then got progressively more sick on Saturday. I’d hoped to do a medium run but skipped it. After a sleepless Sunday night, I had to miss work Monday. I finally obtained some Claritin D and felt much better but wisely took Tuesday off as well.

3/29: I went to Barry’s Bootcamp for the first time ever. The most popular times fill up super quickly on ClassPass, so my friend introduced me to Barry’s Buddies program where you get a free class for referring a friend (and the referee does as well).

We started on the floor for 10 minutes (that day was chest/back/abs), then 10 minutes on the treadmill for flat speed intervals. 10 minutes back on the floor, then 10 on the treadmill for hills. Then back to the floor for a quick 5 (my arms were dying), then a final 5 on the treadmill. I got up to about 8+ mph by the end but was afraid to take it fast because my form suffers. The treadmills were Woodways which were super nice (they also have those at Mile High Run Club).

Chaya is a semi-regular and is being coached by the instructor so we went back in after for a quick pic.

4/1: D.C. I finally got to try Astro Donuts & Fried Chicken but didn’t get to snap a photo of my beautiful Cherry Blossom decorated donut or my less attractive but delicious and juicy fried chicken. Or my gone in 30 seconds maple bacon donut.

After a couple of years of failing, we finally got to see the Kite Festival on a beautiful  spring day. Ro’s friends had bought an octopus kite that we named and flew for over an hour.



I had dinner at Nando’s which is the 3rd time in as many DC trips and now sort of a tradition. Macho peas and cheeky bants.

4/2: Cherry Blossom 10 Mile. Race report to come!

4/6: Spin at SYNC Studio again and Sweetgreen after. I got the Beets Don’t Kale my Vibe (sigh) bowl and it was amazing.

4/7: Finally went back to Rolf’s for drinks with my work team to take in the Christmas lights and belatedly celebrate a holiday birthday.

4/8: Storm King day trip. I had wanted to get a shakeout run in but just wasn’t feeling it. We walked over 6 miles and saw so many great pieces of art.


Prior, we had lunch at Brothers BBQ and I got the pulled pork sandwich when I read that they had North Carolina roots. It did not disappoint. The sauce had the right amount of vinegar, the cole slaw was plentiful, and my side of collard greens was full of ham.

4/9: UAE 10K. Race report to come!

My mileage wasn’t as high as I would have liked, but overall these were some fairly solid weeks of fitness and food.

The Weeks in Workouts and Food 1/2-1/8 and 1/9-1/15

I had a great start to my running and fitness in 2017 with that afore-mentioned New Year’s Day treadmill run (right after seeing Star Wars Rogue One which got me inspired to get buff and rock climb and be able to hang from ledges while saving the day). Then I predictably have fallen off a bit. I ended up not racing the first couple of weeks, but still have the Fred Lebow Half to look forward to on 2/22/16. I plan to run but not race it, but haven’t decided on a pace at all. Somewhere between 9:30-10:45 for sure. TBD.

My real next goal race (so far, 10K TBD) is the NYC Half on March 19th. I’m following a modified Hal Higdon Novice 2/Intermediate 1 plan and trying to increase my mileage since I’m technically already at week 4 of 12 as of writing this on 1/15/16. Eek!

Some two-week highlights:

Monday 1/2: An amazing brunch at Butter & Scotch, where I spent part of New Year’s Eve. Their biscuits are just as amazing as their cakes, cookies, and cocktails. I had the fried chicken sandwich, pictured below with a side salad. We got the first slice of (caramel apple) pie of the New Year, so it was on the house. Even better! Evening PureBarre class. It was easier to hold plank the whole time, but push-ups were still a struggle.

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Wednesday 1/4: Ramen Shack for lunch. I have never had a better soft-boiled egg in my life (or in my ramen). I’ll be a repeat visitor here for sure.

Thursday 1/5: SpeedWork; 10 x 200 m repeats. Not going to lie, I was very excited about this workout. I didn’t bother using my watch because I knew I would mess them up between the lap-stop and the 200 m recovery periods. Reyes Deli tacos for dinner afterward, which of course I have no pictures of.

Friday 1/6: Only including this for the dessert count. Got the trio at Luke’s Lobster, so 1/2 each of a shrimp roll, crab roll, and lobster roll. But then we went wild at Billy’s Bakery at closing and got 2 types of cake and a banana nutella cupcake, most of which was consumed while watching Shark Tank and Don’t Think Twice.

Saturday 1/7: My best day of running and food for the year so far. 8 miles run, which included 1 solo mile, 2 with a friend in the park, 4 along the trails around the park in the increasing snow, and 1 cool-down mile home. Then friends came over and we baked an Atlantic Beach Pie. THEN I had the amazing porchetta and duck banh mi at Mekelberg’s with some beer. Then cocktails at Dick & Jane.

Monday 1/9: Tower Barre at A*Line Pilates, a new-to-me studio in Carroll Gardens. It was a neat mix of tower pilates to start, then the more traditional lower body barre moves at the end. The studio was beautiful and intimate and I loved the instructor. Definitely coming back here for pilates, even though I’m at beginner level.

Tuesday 1/10: I ran, but only 2 miles and ended at Whole Foods. I bought a FarmBox from work for the first time ($15 for a big bag of produce, mostly local and in season purchased from smaller farms). This was enough to make a seitan-tomato-brown rice-kale-feta grain bowl that night then kabocha squash red curry with kale on Wednesday.

Thursday 1/12: SpeedWork was 4 x 800 repeats. I took the first one too hard (3:51), then almost kept it up for the second (3:56) before needing to pull over at the 550m mark on the 3rd and try not to ralph. Whoops! Major positive split for the last one as well (4:13). I was overdressed and it was very humid, which did not help matters. The good news is I had a delicious fried chicken sandwich with tots and fried macaroni & cheese balls for dinner after at the new Gnarly Eats.

Friday 1/13: PureBYK 45 minute spin class at BYKLYN. It was too late to cancel this without getting charged after my speed debacle Thursday night, so I took it pretty easy with the resistance compared to the previous time. I then wolfed down a barbacoa burrito from Chipotle for lunch and donated blood in the afternoon before having a Peter Pan donut and dinner at Hail Mary. Had to try the deep-fried burrata and their 3-layer birthday cake…

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Saturday 1/14: Since I was baking Butter & Scotch’s 3-layer birthday cake with friends the next day. This was a lot of work, from cutting up the butter to making a meringue to assembling the 3 layers, plus mixing up a cream cheese frosting. I definitely need a third cake pan because my pie dish caused one layer to be slightly misshapen. But after some refrigeration, this really came together and was a success. Restorative yoga afterward at Shambhala Yoga.

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Sunday 1/15: 10 miles along the Bay (Sheepshead), beach (Manhattan and Brighton-adjacent), and boardwalk (Coney Island) with a running club friend. I felt pretty good considering I hadn’t covered this distance since the marathon. We kept the pace in high 10’s and low 11’s which was made easier by all of the ice and snow on the sidewalks and boardwalks. Miraculously, neither of us fell! We then got Roll N Roaster for lunch; classic roast beef sandwiches, cheese fries, and a lemonade for me. I’ve been wanting to hit up this spot for years. Then second brunch at Building on Bond where I got a full English Breakfast.

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Dinner was at Chumley’s where my friend who knows the chef and I ordered half the menu.

Total miles: 12 miles and 1 class the week of 1/2-1/9, 16 miles and 3 classes the week of 1/10-1/15. AKA totally not ready to race Fred Lebow, but a start to my half marathon base.

Total desserts: 14? There was a donut I didn’t mention, but no ice cream these two weeks.