Week 3 of 2018 NYC Marathon Training

7/30: 5 mile regular loop around Prospect Park. I went clockwise (most people and bike traffic goes counter-clockwise) so I got to see a lot of PPTC folks.

7/31: I ” needed” a Fartlek this week as per the NYRR Virtual Trainer, but ended up with more of a straight progression run. I went down to Brooklyn Bridge Park and made it to 7pm Open Run just in the nick of time. I sped up from 10:30 down to the low 9’s. I was planning to call it a day at 5 miles, but I had just missed both buses back home, so I ran home 1.5 miles for 6.5 total.

8/1: Cross-training day. I went back to Swerve with Gabby since she had a class pack and I had enough credits on ClassPass. My legs were feeling heavy, but I still pushed hard on the hills and with some of the races. My performance stats said I biked 13.8 miles which seems low, but the 20+ mile stats I get from Flywheel always seemed high.

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8/2: Real Rest Day. Went to Mermaid Inn with a friend visiting from out of town and ordered everything on their happy hour food menu except the raw stuff (she’s expecting).

8/3: Coney Island Fireworks Group Run, which I turned into my long run due to forecasted rain Saturday morning. I got 3.2 in solo, then 6 with the group down to the Coney Island boardwalk, then another 0.8 in along the boardwalk’s piers to make it an even 10. I met some new running people in my cluster of 7, then saw some old PPTC folks at the end. I enjoyed a watermelon and blue raspberry Slush Puppy and some fireworks before taking the subway home with a sweaty group of runners.

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8/4: I was feeling beat up from the long run and didn’t particularly want to run in the morning downpour (but had a haircut appointment at 11:45am), so I did an easy recovery 3 miles on the gym treadmill. Apparently I missed a total deluge and multiple phones were drowned. Still bummed that I missed the first week of SummerStreets, though.

Then I did an Escape Room with friends (we got out!) and ate at Spicy Village before getting Taiyaki. I got green tea and back sesame swirl as usual.

8/5: I had planned to do a recovery run in Central Park since I woke up uptown, but had a lazy morning instead. Went to my uptown favorite Bo’s Bagels with the bf, then met my Instagram food friend in Williamsburg for a cold brew slushie at Toby’s (they call it a crushie), and a sushi omakase at the brand spankin’ new spot Ume. It was deconstructed and both beautiful as well as a lot of fun to play with (the different salts and seasonings are on the bottom left).

I made it to Restorative Yoga class at 6pm and decided against running after because of my extreme hip tightness. Area Yoga was only 4 credits on ClassPass, which makes me glad I keep doing the ~3 classes a month option.

Total:: 24.7 miles out of a prescribed 32. Sigh. I knew my first two spot-on weeks might be an issue and lead to some leg tiredness. Hopefully I can keep up with the rest of the plan’s mileage from here. I’m aware that I missed at least one weekday run each week the last two fall marathon training cycles, but I’m also trying to make up for my injured spring with a solid fall here. Hoping to find a balance!

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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.

Pre-NYC Marathon Training Weeks

I had originally been planning on a pretty higher mileage 18-week plan (Pfitzinger 18/55 but scaled down a bit) for this year’s NYC Marathon before getting injured in April. I’m now scaling back even more to something closer to 16 weeks and still base building until I get there. I might do the NYRR Virtual Trainer again since I liked their built-in feedback on paces and race expectations (Edit 7/16: Officially signed up for the moderate plan again). These are the last three weeks before that begins in mid-July.

June 25 – July 1: 18.4 miles total, a high for the last 10 weeks. Unplanned rest day on Tuesday (snoozed too hard in the AM but did go see a Colbert Report taping and eat at Han Dynasty and Van Leeuwen Brothers Ice Cream that evening). I did 4.7 easy miles with the Beer Runners on Wednesday evening before the weather got too hot. On Thursday, I returned to Mile High Run Club for The Build, which is primarily strength training. We did some kettlebell sets for arms/legs then abs, then finished bodyweight AMRAPs. We also had some shorter intervals on the treadmill in between strength sets. I stayed on the same treadmill (which are Woodways and amazing) for The Distance class immediately after. I usually hit ~5.4 miles in this class (interval training) but took my paces slower and used more of the cooldown, so I got 5 miles exactly and 1.2 from The Build for a total of 6.2 miles, my longest since April. I managed 2 miles in the too-hot gym Friday morning as a recovery run then bopped around midtown for lunch and coffee, running into a running friend at Toby’s Estate Coffee.

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The Views from the new Domino Park in Williamsburg

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5th Avenue Toby’s Estate Coffee

My Long Run for the week was 5.5 hot, grueling Sunday morning miles along Brooklyn Bridge Park to Williamsburg with my friend Andrew. I started getting goosebumps and some heat exhaustion signs during the last mile despite trying to stay in the shade and drinking lots of water with Nuun. We took a few pauses, ended the run in Domino Park, then walked to Pies N Thighs and devoured brunch.

July 2 – July 8: Very few miles running (5.8, all treadmill), but there was swimming on the beach for the 4th and a hike at Anthony’s Nose on Saturday the 7th. One of the runs was at the new Peloton Tread Studio (30 minutes run, 10 minutes strength and core workout). I can’t wait to go back! I loved the treadmills once I got the hang of adjustments. I skipped one planned run Thursday because I was very busy baking a complicated banana cake from Momofuku Milk Bar. I got to have some food adventures with Allison and Lori and we stopped by my beloved Milk & Cream Cereal Bar for more cereal-infused ice cream.

America: In Our Faces

Cake and Karaoke

Milk & Cream and the Food Babies

July 8-15: 23.3 miles over 4 days of running. Yay something in the 20’s! I had planned on 5 days, but was very tired on Saturday morning from celebrating my last day of work Friday the 13th. To celebrate with coworkers, I ate a lot. The 15th was also National Ice Cream Day, but I celebrated with ice cream on multiple opportunities.

My runs included easy miles in Central Park and Prospect Park, plus some treadmill intervals at Mile High Run Club’s The Distance.

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Baohaus

Beebe’s Pizza

Ice & Vice LIC Popup

Central Park Reservoir

Khachapuri (Georgian cheesy bread) in Brighton Beach

Brighton Beach

Steak Frites and Burger at Bubo

Slowly Running Again & UK Trip Recap

After surviving my Memorial Day weekend test run, I slowly ramped up mileage. 2 miles here, 4 miles there, a few times a week. The goal is to get back to 5 days a week with medium midweek mileage for marathon training. I’m looking at a scaled down version of my original 18 week marathon training plan of choice. Maybe soon I’ll actually run enough to run off some of the baking I’ve been doing.

May 28 – June 3: 9.3 miles over 4 runs

June 4 – June 10: 11.6 miles over 3 runs. Double digits, woohoo! I also baked the Momofuku Milk Bar birthday cake thanks to the unique baking supply birthday gifts of my friends. It took some time but was worth it!

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June 11 – June 17: 7 miles and some canceled ClassPass spin. I volunteered at a race to get credit for future races and had a great time at the bib pickup table. I also managed a full loop of Prospect Park for a total of 5 miles, which is my longest since the Monument Avenue 10K on 4/14. I had to break for water a few times but it felt good overall.

Beebe’s Pizza in Long Island City

June 18 – 24: UK trip! I flew out Saturday the 16th and back the 23rd for my cousin’s wedding in Scotland with my parents and boyfriend. I didn’t get in as many runs as I had wanted in London due to food poisoning/stomach flu. I did manage a spin class, a hike up Arthur’s Seat, and a trail run near the castle that ended up with me getting lost in the woods and having to climb over cow pen gates. On Sunday, I did not use my jet lag to my advantage but finally staged myself onto the treadmill for another 3 miles. Total running mileage of ~8 miles but I turned my GPS watch off while I was lost and walking/running so we’ll never know.

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Afternoon Tea at Sketch in London

Lovecrumbs in Edinburgh

Arthur’s Seat in Edinburgh

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Roast seafood Feast at Ondine in Edinburgh

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Hanging with Jeannie

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Watching Watson the buzzard eat dead chick parts

Los Angeles Trip and BIG 5K Recap

So this was technically Week 1 of Brooklyn Half training (3/12-3/18) but I was also taking a trip to LA with Gabby and didn’t manage to get in any runs before I left Wednesday 3/14. So this is mainly about our hikes and run in LA and all the things we ate!

We flew in early Wednesday afternoon, dropped off our stuff in Hollywood, then headed in a very long car ride to Venice Beach.

It was so nice to see and smell the beach! We then had dinner with some friends of mine at A-Frame, Roy Choi’s Hawaiian outpost in nearby Culver City. No pictures because we were starving but we had loaded fries, two kinds of spam musubi, Brussels sprouts, and crispy chicken.

The next day, we took off on a Runyon Canyon hike. We took what we thought was the main route but then realized we were on the Eastern side of it. We figured out that we could keep going around the rim and back down but we had no idea how steep it would be.

Making new friends on the way up

We made it! It was 2.8 miles roundtrip and 740 feet of elevation gain.

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Taking a chill break on the way down

After showering (I got some mud on my hiking leggings from bouldering and scooting down), we got some delicious ramen from Urban Ramen, bought snacks at Ralph’s, then walked to Hollywood to see the sights, namely the walk of fame and Mann’s Chinese Theater.

Oh, and some churros. Later on, I had dinner with a friend at Bowery Bungalow, then ice cream from Scoops in Silverlake.

On Friday, we headed to Universal Studios Hollywood. I was excited to see their version of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter after going to the one in Florida in January. It was almost exactly the same, down to the butterbeer (hot, cold, and frozen). We did the hour-long studio tour, which was super cool because I got to see Jaws in action and see the set of recent favorite The Good Place.

Plus, huge donuts at Simpsons World/Springfield.

We hit up the race Expo on the way back and got to see some more of Downtown LA. I got street tacos, finally (was on the hunt after seeing the LA taco episode of Ugly Delicious). And it rained, which we were totally prepared for in our hooded jackets and umbrellas.

On Saturday morning, we ran The Big 5K, which is sponsored by Big 5 Sports and is affiliated with the Los Angeles Marathon (the next day). We signed up sort of on a whim, figuring that we were in town anyway and it would be a fun race. We didn’t look up the course profile until the day before the race because they didn’t really highlight it on the website. Now we know why. There were some brutal hills, especially for this relative flatlander. It starts off in the parking lot of Dodgers Stadium, then around nearby Elysium Park.

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According to Strava/Garmin, you are climbing for 33% of the time. Most of the first mile started out great and I was on pace for a PR. There was a slight downhill coming out of the parking lots, then boom, climb #1 just before 1 mile. I chugged my way up and hoped that was the worst of it. But of course, what goes up must come down. Then back up again. Then down. Then up.

My grade adjusted pace for the first mile says it all; I went out hard then couldn’t hang on. Around mile 3, I got to laugh with other runners at what felt like an onslaught of hills. But I was pretty bummed that I couldn’t handle the hills.

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Glad to be done

 

Gabby and I grabbed our medals and snacks (she got the swag bag, I passed on it not realizing I could have had another Clif Bar). Then it was time to eat! I tried a pastrami egg and cheese burrito as well as a smoothie from some food trucks that were there. I was tempted by the taco truck too, of course.

We took a Lyft home, showered off, then headed back to Runyon Canyon for a gentler hike. We took the easy, paved road up this time then came down on the east side (where we had headed up on Thursday). It was a beautiful, sunny Saturday and so many people were out! It was impressed to watch all the runners, but we had a good time taking it easy and recovering. Lots of foam rolling that day! We had Korean BBQ bowls on the roof, coffee from nearby Blackwood Coffee, then I met with my friend Gina to hang out with her pup Riley and get donuts from California Donuts.

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Runyon Canyon Ups

Before we headed to the airport (I had a red eye), we stopped off at a mural that Mabelle had wanted to check out. And it’s right next door to See’s Candy factory and store.

Then I spent the extra time before my flight screaming at the Houston-Michigan basketball game and eating chilaquiles. I missed out on all the NYC Half action, but I’m going to enter the lottery for next year.

Mileage: 3.6 miles of running, most of it spent wheezing up hills. 4.6 miles of beautiful, sunny hiking.

Pre-Training for Brooklyn Half 2018

Me: “I’m going to take my current weekly mileage and add just 3 miles each week for four weeks to build to the perfect starting point for Kara Goucher’s 10 Week Half Marathon training plan by March 12 (10 weeks out from Brooklyn Half).”

Also me: Hates running in snow and slush, loves sleeping in, prone to AM intestinal distress and lethargy, traveled to Boston during a Noreaster, underwent personal tragedy in early March.

After 3 very down weeks in January and February, I did indeed start a slow, safe build-up to the high 20’s/low 30’s from the very low 20’s. There were some mild aches and pains, and I was convinced that my sore foot meant I had Morton’s Neuroma. I missed a run here and there on the 5x/week plan, but am feeling good overall.

I’m still looking for a March 5K and April 10K as tune-ups. I had originally thought about racing another Half Marathon in March, but they kind of snuck up on me and my long run mileage is only around 7 miles. Why try to race one when I’m not happy with my volume yet? Speedwork has been going well and I’m seeing lower times on the treadmill and around the park, though I’m keeping my easy pace well into the 10:xx range. I’m also cross-training decently at the gym and with coworkers. I can now do full-body pushups with good form! Not many, but a few.

2/19 – 2/25: 24.8 miles. I raced the Al Gordon 4 Miler which was my first NYRR race ever back in 2015. I got a PR of 33:47 (8:27 pace per mile) but had very uneven pacing. Super slow first mile up the hill, too-fast miles 2 and 3 down the hill, then a struggling final mile over the mini hill to the finish on Center Drive. Looking at my hill grade adjusted paces below though, I guess it wasn’t so bad after all.

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Finishing Kick

2/26 – 3/4: 25.6 miles, including Mile High Run Club’s The Distance and a run around Boston. The Noreaster largely kept me confined to the hotel gym, but the treadmills there had video footage of running around New Zealand and Hawaii, so I stayed fairly entertained. I was hoping for a run along the Charles River or to do Jamaica Pond’s Parkrun, but the latter was cancelled due to the wind and rain. I got to run along the Muddy River and Boston Common on Saturday morning with friends and end at the Tracksmith store. I was too sweaty to try anything on, though.

3/5 – 3/11: 15.8 miles. Ah yes, the week where my chickens came home to roost, in terms of life things and grief and puking my guts out. Managed to get in some easy Prospect Park loops and a few on the treadmill when I couldn’t stand the winds, but no long runs.

also there was snow. I did do PPTC’s International Women’s Day Run but skipped the post-run food in favor of getting groceries.

Other January and February Running & Food

I took a few weeks mostly off running after the Austin 3M Half. So this is mostly going to be a food post! I know that’s y’all’s favorite anyway,

1/22 – 1/28: I had a few easy runs but was definitely sore for a couple of days after the half and the shakeout. 17.8 miles total. I also used my guaranteed entry for the Brooklyn Half in May. It’s my current half PR (1:58:54), though I didn’t race one in fall during marathon training. I’m of course hoping to shave a few minutes off of it, depending on how training goes.

I led the 10 minute mile pace group at the PPTC new member run for 6 miles. We ended it at Dekalb Market Hall, which I’ve been to at least half a dozen times. I have a few favorite stations (name jian bing with scallion pancakes) but love trying new dishes as well.

Me and some of my hardy pace group at the end

I ended up trying the namesake Doner Kebab from Kotti Berliner. It was enormous and delicious and super messy. The boyfriend’s super healthy roasted veggies and chicken are in the background. He was detoxing from the (unpictured) cookies from Chip at Gansevoort Market AND the two types of red velvet cake the day before.

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1/29 – 2/4: A week of desserts (and a nice cold loop of Central Park on Saturday). I had cakes and pie (green tea and Earl Gray crepe cakes from Lady M and matcha custard from Four and Twenty Blackbirds), more matcha crepe cake at Patisserie Tomoko, and cereal-blended ice cream from Milk and Cream Cereal Bar.

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2/5 – 2/11: I only ran once! I donated platelets on Tuesday after work and volunteered at the Empire State Building Run-up on Wednesday, so I earned $50 in race credit to use with NYCRuns. I’m still trying to pick out a spring 10K to use as a tuneup for the Brooklyn Half or maybe a 5K as well.

Savory meals included Peruvian roasted chicken, Korean fried chicken and japchae, barbecue eel bento box, and the breakfast ramen + char siu pancakes at Talde. I’m trying to rein in my portion control now that my mileage is lower, but it’s hard!

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2/12 – 2/18: On Monday, I brought in Fruity Pebbles marshmallow cookies to work. Then on Tuesday, I teamed up with a coworker to get some packzi from the Polish point of Greenpoint. We got a variety of fillings, from raspberry jam to Boston cream to rose jam. And this was after having a few supersize bao from Great Northern Dumpling in Flushing.

Nothing says romance like undercooked red meat. We went hard at Gallagher’s Steakhouse. Prime rib, oysters, filet mignon, coconut cake, and more.

It’s been all restraint since. I got back on my running game a bit, logging 21.7 miles for the week over 4 days of running. This included a 3.33 mile loop of Prospect Park as part of the Cherry Tree 10 Mile Relay with my teammates/friends The Crystals. Yes, they’re both named Crystal.