Weeks 8 and 9 of 2018 NYC Marathon Training

Week 8

9/3: Last day in New England. 6.2 miles around Conway, NH. Then we drove to Maine and ate more lobster.

Covered Bridge in Conway, NH

The Clam Shack in Kennebunkport, ME

Bob’s Clam Hut in Kittery, ME

9/4: 6am flight back to NYC and went straight into work. Much needed rest day.

9/5: 3 miles at night in Morningside Park in the final throes of the city’s gross heat and humidity. Korean fried chicken and ddukbokki (and beer) for dinner.

Morningside Park Waterfall

Korean Fried Chicken, kimchi coleslaw, and calamari ddukbokki

9/6: Unintentional rest day. Finally back in the throes of meal prepping and healthier post-vacation eating.

Grain Bowl at Le Pain Quotidien

9/7: Hit snooze on my AM run, then was supposed to be going to Fast Braid Friday with Colleen Quigley at the NYRR RunCenter. But they changed the location last-minute and I didn’t get the memo. I showed up at the RunCenter and was wondering where everyone was. By the time I figured it out, it would have been tight for time and going back to the UES (which is where I had just come from and didn’t want to backtrack). I decided to go home and cook dinner and not run (the event was going to have a 1.7 mile shakeout run but I couldn’t fit all my running stuff in my work bag).

9/8: Remember last week how I slipped in that I signed up for a 5K? Yeah, that would be the TEAL 5K in Prospect Park. I’m over a year out from my 5K PR (though to be fair have only raced one since) and was hoping that I could use my higher recent volume and last week + of lower mileage as a taper. The course was my usual route in the park but the first mile was downhill, second mile was flat, and third mile had the big hill. I was able to get close to 5K PR pace on the first mile, then slowed to 10K pace on the second, then the wheels fell off on the third. I wasn’t even at half marathon pace, but closer to goal marathon pace. But my friend Chun who was doing his long run got me to push through the last quarter mile and I hit a 7:13 pace for the final 0.1 of it. I guess this is why I actually did speedwork and 5K-specific workouts last year before my PR. I grabbed the swag bag and banana then did a cooldown jog home with a teammate. Total of 6.1 miles for the day.

Saw The Nun with friends then tried out the Detroit style pizza at Lions Tigers and Squares before getting a Butterfinger blizzard at Dairy Queen.

Pepperoni and Vodka Pies at Lions, Tigers, and Squares

9/9: Since I skipped out on my long run last week, I wanted to get back up to normal (14-16 mile range) this week even though it was supposed to be a cutback long run and week overall (11 miles and 28 miles). I woke up ‘late’ at 7 to go cheer for the 5th Avenue Mile after deciding not to run up there. I cheered for a few hours then headed home and napped before my long run. Then I just didn’t do it? The rain continued and I just could not bring myself to run. I thought about pushing it to Monday night, which I did last year with some success.

5th Avenue Mile Cheering

Cherring for the NYRR Cameras

Total: 15.3 miles and no long run. Eep.

Week 9

9/10: Weather was still leaning toward the very rainy, so I did 3 treadmill miles at easy pace after deciding not to make up my long run.

9/11: I laced up my new Saucony Freedoms and ran to and from NYRR Open Run in Brooklyn Bridge Park. I did that as sort of a fartlek, alternating in the 8’s and 9’s. The gnats were out of control and I had to pull one out of my mouth, then found one in my bra later. Cool. 7.4 miles total.

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9/12: Easy loop with the Brooklyn Beer Runners for 4.6 miles. Ended with a beer then got tamales at Maya Taqueria.

9/13: Track Mile! I ran from work to Icahn Stadium where they open the track to the public every Thursday night. Coach Honerkamp puts on a timed mile series once a month that I’ve seen some friends do, and I thought I should use it as a fitness test after my abysmal 5K. I ran 2 miles to get there, did a warm-up mile with a friend, then race the mile in 7:24, 5 seconds off from my PR. I definitely think it’s time to bring back more aggressive speedwork intervals in and will be trying to throw down next month. Short cooldown jog off-watch so 4 miles total officially.

9/14: Rest day.

9/15: Long run. NYRR Virtual Trainer prescribed 17 miles. Last year, I did it as the Bronx 10 Miler then a miserable, sunny, hot 7 miles after that I cut a little short. This year, I planned it with another PPTC member who wanted similar pace and distance, so we set out together at 7am. We definitely took several water breaks as the sun peaked out of the clouds and it warmed up a bit and we paused to fuel. I had only hit 15.5 as I neared my Juice Press destination, so I finished it with a slog up the stairs in Fort Greene Park, where I ran into a friend. I practically rolled down the hill for my final bit after pausing to chat. Happy to hit 16.2 miles total.

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9/16: I stopped off at Chip in Gansevoort Market to try out their strawberry shortcake cookies. Holy moly. Much later, I did a Recovery run with Chaya around Prospect Park in the PM (moved from a planned early run in Morningside Park). Warm but breezy! 6.1 miles total and it felt great.

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Total: 41.5 miles, a new weekly high. Feeling good and back on track.

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Week 7 of 2018 NYC Marathon Training

This was supposed to be my highest mileage week (well, first of 3) for this training cycle. I was headed to New England on vacation Thursday night and needed to frontload my mileage a bit, but also scheduled a platelet donation Tuesday night and fantasy football draft Wednesday night. Then I actually went on vacation and remembered that I don’t like running on highway shoulders. C’est la vie.

8/27: 8.3 miles on the Williamsburg and Manhattan Bridges. Stuck to an easy pace and went by effort on the bridges.

8/28: 4 miles easy on the treadmill. Well, 3 miles very easy and 1 mile at goal marathon pace. Donated platelets after work. I’m planning to donate blood again right after the marathon.

8/29: Rest day. Did some restorative yoga and had my fantasy football draft. There was beer, there was pizza, and I drafted some strong picks. More importantly, the yoga stretches felt so good. I should be doing this weekly.

8/30: 4 progressive treadmill miles before work, then flight to New England. 2 at easy pace, 1 at goal marathon pace (9:30s but would be happy with anything under 10minute miles), then a mix for the final mile between easy and goal half marathon pace (08:50s currently).

8/31: Walked all over Portland, Maine. Ate all the lobster, plus some oysters.

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9/1: 4 miles with my friend, then we drove up the Mount Washington Auto Road. We had planned to do a moderate mileage hike, but the fog and cold at the top were too much. Went back into town and explored North Conway after.

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No views in sight

9/2: Long run fail. I was all prepped and ready for 15 miles but it didn’t happen. Mentally, I wasn’t there and didn’t feel safe running by cars on the Kancamagus Highway. I headed up Bear Mountain a bit and ran along a ski trail but my energy was kind of zapped. Threw in the towel, then later we floated down the Saco River slowly in inner tubes with some blueberry cider.

Lower Falls

Total: 21.5 miles. Surprise cutback week! I still feel really good about Week 6 and have signed up for my first race since April (a 5K, still looking for possible tuneup 10K and half).

Week 6 of 2018 NYC Marathon Training

Special Note: This is my 100th blog post here! I know it’s been erratic at times, but I’m glad I’m writing this all down somewhere. I think (and talk) a lot about creation vs. consumption of content. I journal semi-regularly (off and on since I was 8). My Twitter and Instagram are private. Yet I find myself leaving detailed race recommendations, travel guides, favorite food spots across many platforms (namely Facebook Groups, Reddit, Strava comments and run notes, and Yelp Collections). I wish there was some perfectly organized way to harness everything I write and share all across the internet without necessarily linking it or turning profiles public.

Week 5 was kind of a bust and not the 34-mile week I had intended. I hadn’t cracked 30 miles yet this cycle and was concerned. Cooler temps prevailed this week and I finally got up for a pre-work morning run. Twice, even. Progress!

8/20: One of those regular run park loops where everything feels good. I was able to make it a tiny bit progressive and fought my way up the hill, then was flying on the way home. The lower humidity weather really helped, but this is exactly what I needed after a tough Saturday long run and a skipped Sunday recovery run. First mile was 11, last mile was 9:49. 5.1 miles total.

8/21: Easy 3 miles on the gym treadmill @ an 11:00 mile pace in the AM.

8/22: Intentional rest day. I went to the NYRR RunCenter and got a copy of Run Fast Cook Fast Eat Slow and got to meet Shalane and Elyse! They signed my book and Shalane asked what I was training for and I got so awkward. I said “NYC. Og my god, so are you! That’s right! I’ll be starting two hours after you. But I’ll add you to my tracker so I know when you’re done!”. I was cheering for friends last year during her victory and didn’t get to see her cruising in the park, but I am so excited that she’s going for it again.

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8/23: I did another double at Mile High Run Club by taking The Build (primarily kettlebell and bodyweight strength with some short running intervals) at 6pm then The Distance at 7pm. I “ran through” the two classes and got 7.5 Miles overall. I haven’t had a good midweek medium long run in some time! I felt pretty destroyed after.

8/24: Easy AM recovery run on the treadmill listening to Who? Weekly podcast; 3 miles @ 11:00 minute mile pace. Made a berry protein smoothie after but still got a bagel once at work at 10am.

8/25: Long run. I kept it in Brooklyn because I was meeting some coworkers who are training for a half. I did 4 miles to and around Fort Greene Park, 7 with them in Prospect Park, then went further south into Park Slope and through tiny JJ Byrne Park for the final 3. It went much better than last week’s long run overall (better weather with lower dew point certainly helped) and it was fun to see so many PPTC folks. 14 miles @ 10:52 pace total.

Went to Red Rooster for dinner, finally. Had a bourbon negroni, cornbread, and shared this seafood jambalaya for 2. Spoiler alert: we ate all the fried soft shell crabs and most of the lobster but still had a couple pounds of leftovers.

8/26: Recovery run; 4.5 miles in Central Park. Easy, peasy, a little sunny. I love coming here near-weekly for a change of scenery and since the final miles of the marathon are in this park.

Total: 37.1 miles, my highest weekly mileage since the first week of January (actually higher but my non-Monday to Friday mileage there was 39.5).

Week 5 of 2018 NYC Marathon Training

8/13: Unintentional rest day. I was waiting for a thunderstorm to pass over, then ate dinner. It was 9:30 by the time I was less full, and I figured early bedtime should beat trying to squeeze in a few miles.

8/14: After-work Central Park loop once the 5pm thunderstorm blew through. I had forgotten my watch at home so started Strava on my phone and put it in my shorts pocket and only pulled it out when changing podcasts. The hills were hard but doable at this pace. Not sure what happened on the last mile except dodging pedestrians and waiting for cyclists to pass.

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Shake Shack with the bf afterward. The blueberry pie concrete really hit the spot.

8/15: Taco Run with PPTC; 4.5 miles total down to the Tacos El Bronco truck. It was a little dark so I didn’t bother trying to take photos, but I got al pastor, suadero, and lengua tacos with a pineapple Jarritos.

8/16: My plan called for both intervals and hill repeats this week. I…did neither. East 5.2 miles that did not feel easy. A humid, sweaty slog.

8/17: Rest Day but I had a Field Day for work in Central Park. There was Tug of War, mountain climber/starburst jump Tabata sets, and a three-legged race that I took very aggressively.

Then Korean for dinner and seeing Crazy Rich Asians.

Budae Jigae at Her Name is Han

8/18: Long Run Day. 12 prescribed, but since I jumped up to 12 last week, I wanted to get 13 or 14. I just barely made it. I took the long way to SummerStreets instead of braving the crowds on the Brooklyn Bridge and got to conquer my old nemesis, the Williamsburg Bridge. Back when I lived on the Lower East Side and my runs were short (usually under 3 miles), I would sometimes run to Brooklyn and back. Things got hard once I was in Central Park (and a little before, honestly). You can see the drop from a 9 minute mile (??) to a 12 (up Cat Hill and including the search for water and a bathroom break at the Boathouse). This run led to Chafe City but I ended at Juice Press before the long C train ride back home. During my time underground, I apparently missed a downpour.

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8/19: Bo’s Bagels in Harlem for breakfast, cortado from Shuteye Espresso then a massage. Ouch. I could have used more time spent on my legs, but my back certainly feels rolled out.

I should have gotten my 5-ish miles in pre-massage and was just feeling too beat up after. My sports bra chafing from Saturday was hurting, my left heel was feeling off, and my hips were screaming. 0 miles.

I had more food adventures with my friend Lori in Greenpoint in the afternoon. Pastries and sushi galore.

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Total: 28.6 miles total out of a prescribed 34.

Week 4 of 2018 NYC Marathon Training

This was supposed to be a down week with 2 full days off and only 27 miles. But I was feeling weird about my last week where I missed the goal by 7+ miles. The weather was topsy turvy (heat wave, thunderstorms and lightning, etc).

8/6: I took the Mile High Run Club The Distance class and was able to get in 5.5 miles of intervals in 57 minutes. I pushed my paces just a bit and am starting to feel ready for some speed again. I’m shooting for a 5K PR in September (race TBD) so any time spent running in the 7:xx range is good.

8/7: I was planning to do a full but slow ~6.5-7 miles (with a run to the NYRR Open Run Brooklyn Bridge Park course and back). But Open run got canceled due to lightning about halfway through! I was able to run and just make a bus and avoid the rain on the way home and ended up with 4 miles for the day.

8/8: I was able to volunteer at the Al Goldstein Summer Speed Series #6 due to work conflicts easing up, so I ran there. Then ran to a water station to help out. Then ran back to race HQ then out of the park with a teammate and to the bar to meet the Brooklyn Beer Runners group. 5.2 miles total at a very easy pace. So hot, so humid. It rained a little bit which felt great.

8/9: Off day

8/10: Unplanned rest day. Got home from work and didn’t feel like doing the 9 miles for the Fireworks Group Run. Thought about running to spectate Take the Bridge in Williamsburg, but enjoyed my quiet night in, elevating my feet.

8/11: I had again planned to do my long run as part of Summer Streets, but woke up to some pains in the middle of the night and wasn’t feeling 100% when I got up at 7. I watched the thunderstorms and rain blow in and eventually made it down to the treadmill for an easy 3 miles. I also did a strength workout (bent-over rows, shoulder press, kettlebell deadlifts). Then it was time for more food adventures with Lori. We hit up The Nugget Spot for their special fried chicken sandwich with hot honey ice cream and Flip Sigi for the special burrito (but also longanisa poutine and short rib wonton nachos).

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8/12: 12 miles around Central Park. I ran with friends and was glad to run a 12:xx minute mile instead of pushing to my current 10:40 pace. The humidity was brutal but it was good to get time on my feet and with good company.

Total: 29.7 miles out of a prescribed 27. This makes me feel more prepared for the ~34 on tap next week and for all of my future long runs (some cutback weeks go down to 11 miles).

Week 2 of 2018 NYC Marathon Training

Back at it for week 2 with slightly increased mileage (Virtual Trainer recommended at least 28 miles this week).

7/23: 5.5 miles at Mile High Run Club (The Distance, as always). I was feeling real good this time! Things just sort of clicked and my paces better reflected that. I saw low 7:xx during the sprint portion again.

7/24: Rest day. We had a Filipino kamayan and some pies (banana cream pictured below) as a birthday tribute to my friend who passed in March. She would have loved it.

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7/25: Run to and from volunteering at the 5th Al Goldstein Summer Speed Series 5K race. I was posted up at the water table after the finish and had a great time seeing lots of runner friends and chatting with teammates. 3.5 but I also ran a bit to and fro without turning on my watch, so I rounded up to 4 on the NYRR Virtual Trainer.

7/26: 5.7 miles down to Brooklyn Bridge Park and back. I’m definitely going to use this route (the long way) again and add in more piers and DUMBO for extra mileage.

7/27: Rest day.

7/28: 9 mile long run while also cheering on teammates at NYRR Team Champs. I had hoped to squeeze out another mile, but between the humidity and the chafing, I couldn’t. I did start to jog to the Q train for an added 0.5 miles, but ran into teammates and quit after 0.2 miles. Then we stopped for some blue Gatorade and all was right with the world.

Recovered with brunch, team beers, dinner at French Louie, then dessert at Brooklyn Farmacy.

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Moules et frites, steak tartare, and anchovy frites at French Louie

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Freedom Sundae special at Brooklyn Farmacy

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Snapchat Domino’s Pizza Filter

7/29: 5.7 recovery miles but run at a faster than recovery pace and negative split since I was the slowest person at the PPTC group run. Whoops! Felt pretty good, considering. Went off and had food adventures with my friend Lori who’s an Instagram food influencer. Then ate even more (Szechuanese and 3rd serving of ice cream) on date night.

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Lamb burger at Five Napkin Burger

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Brunch Poutine at 5 Napkin Burger

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Chicken & Waffles

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Black Sesame Kouign Amman and Pistachio soft serve at Patisserie Chanson

Total mileage: 29.7 or so. Right on target!

Week 1 of 2018 NYC Marathon Training

July 16th: I came home from the first day of my new job, took a nap, and laced up my sneakers. I shuffled along the Lafayette Avenue part of the NYC Marathon course, then turned around and came back on Greene Avenue before heading up to Fort Greene Park. Nice and easy. The NYRR Virtual Trainer called for 4 miles, but I had to throw in the towel and get to Whole Foods for Prime Day and end with 3.3 miles.

July 17th: 4.8 miles in 52 minutes at The Distance at Mile High Run Club. I got in 5.2 miles last time and usually hit 5.3-5.4 in 57 minutes, but I took a quick pause to roll out my hamstrings later on in the class. My new base pace is 6.0 miles per hour/10 minute miles but should probably be 5.8 mph/10:20 minute miles, based on my easy runs lately. My new ‘half marathon pace’ is in the low 9’s and my sprint is just under 8 minutes. I’m hoping that all these paces will get back to where they were in April (when I ran a 10K in the 8:30’s), but I’m trying to be patient and put in the work.

July 18th: Unplanned rest day. When your bf wants to get sushi sooner rather than later, sometimes you say yes to sushi soon. No photos because the lighting wasn’t great.

July 19th: 5.4 easy miles with my friend Puffy around the park. We ran into so many PPTC members! Then I ran into my new boss (not pictured).

Murray & Me

July 20th: Rest day. Had drinks at Bocce and dinner at Flex Mussels.

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Aperol and rose spritzes at Bocce

July 21st: 4 miles, a mix of treadmill and running to and from the gym (ended at Sweetgreen). The last mile was uphill in Morningside Park with lots of stairs, then we cut through Columbia University’s campus (my grad school alma mater).

July 22nd: 8 miles for long run day, mostly just loops of the park. It was overcast when I first left my apartment (finally), but the sun came out and the temperature rose from the 70’s to the 80’s. I paused for water a couple of times and did some of my final miles in the trails, which were nice and shady.

I celebrated in the afternoon by meeting my old coworker and fellow baker for a pie crawl. We made it to two stops and had 5 slices of pie between us. Next time, we’ll bike or walk to Butter & Scotch (last seen here) or the new Peetee’s Pie location in Clinton Hill.

Four and Twenty Blackbirds

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Daly Pie

Total: 25.5 miles. My highest in months! Excited to get back into the 30’s soon enough.