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Archive for the ‘nyc’ Category

Stars and stripes run

After yesterday’s 15 mile jaunt through the Palisades, my legs definitely did not have their usual zip.  However, with Voldemort just 7 weeks away today didn’t allow for a rest.  So, 10 miles – I didn’t care how slow, this is all about time on the feet.  Instead of the usual loop of a park or run on the WSH, I decided to improvise similar to my Christmas day run.

First stop at City Hall – one of the pianos placed all around the city.

A random statue on the west side by Battery Park City.  I think I was attempting to look like I was holding out a claw?  haha!

The World Trade Center – starting to actually look like something is getting built.

The whole site is HUGE.  You just don’t know til you’ve been down there.

The Statue of Liberty is out there.

The NY Stock Exchange and my thoughts of how they handled money before the recession:-p

What would my 4th of July be without a photo on my bridge?  I am Bridges Runner after all!  And the Brooklyn Bridge – that’s mine:)

Hope everyone has a safe and healthy 4th of July.  Take time to think about how lucky we are to have our freedoms today.  I definitely thought about how lucky I am to get to run and enjoy a run like today’s:)

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From NY1: poor umbrellas didn't stand a chance

When they said March comes in like a lion, someone wasn’t kidding.  Yesterday, Manhattan looked more like a scene out of the playbook of the southeastern US in August than the end of winter in the northeast.  Mother nature tossed around stuff and poured 5+ inches of rain on Manhattan.  Thankfully it was rain, not snow.  So today, no excuses to getting my 20 spot in (though we did get an extra thunderstorm and hail this morning?).  This all after a week from hell at work.  So, today’s run – I had no idea what to expect. Mentally I was set to give it what I had and ready for downpours.

I met up with my friend AU and headed out on our journey picking up Allen and Amy along the way.  The journey rounded around Central Park, up along Morningside Park and down the west side highway.  Mother nature behaved with just a mist the entire way until the last mile or so when it started to pour.  3 hours seemed to melt away and I felt great keeping conversation along the way.  Our final destination? Peanut butter and Company.  What a lovely way to end a horrific work week.

As Boston looms just 5 weeks away, confidence is building.  I’ve got the NYC half next week as a tune up and have a number in mind.  This will not be the sub 1:40 day most likely but like I said a good tune up.  Let’s see how my work week goes before putting down anything in stone:)

Could never live without peanut butter

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Just like King Kong scaled the skyscraper, today I scaled the stairwells of the Empire State Building.  86 flights,

1,576 stairs for those of you counting at home.  What an amazing experience, even if it was on the painful side at the time:)

I woke up at 6:30am full of nervous energy.  It felt eerily similar to what it feels like to run your first marathon.  The unexpected.  Excitement. Fear.  All wrapped together.  I headed off around 8:15 to meet @worldrunner by the Empire State Building.  I commented to her that it seemed like the building grew taller.  She said “yeah, it took some steroids and grew a few stories overnight.” ha, easy for someone that’s taking the elevator:-p We shot a few pictures – tourist style – with my new SLR and headed in.  It was a bit surreal as honestly I cannot remember the last time I was in the ESB.  I think it was pre-New Yorker days!

We headed into a huge open area on the second floor which was filled with other crazy people like me.  It made me smile knowing that they were there doing the same thing;)  I got my shirt and shoe tag – the shirt making sure to acknowledge it was 1,576 stairs to the top!

I ran into Crazy Bandana and a couple of my teammates to pass the time until my heat at 10:30am.  The nervous energy was building.

At 10:15 I headed over to the women’s staging area where they walked us down to the lobby.  There the cameras were taking pictures and the TV video cameras were shooting.  Hopefully my shortness didn’t keep me from being seen!

The start was a giant clusterf***.  The stairwell was a mere 10 feet from the starting line which made for a lot of chaos.  Since I didn’t really care about my time, I didn’t bumrush and started the climb up.  Right away I got sucked into the excitement and totally disregarded my rule before the race: PACE yourself.  I started way too fast and by the 25th floor I was a hurting chick.  Lesson learned.  I slowed a bit and got into a rhythm.  From there, I would alternate staircases where I’d go one by one or skip a stair.  This provided a bit of change in routine.  At the 20th and 65th floors we crisscrossed stairwells which my legs were eternally thankful for.  At about the 60-62nd floor I got passed by the first male.  He was FLYING.  Holy crap (found out he finished in 10mins or so).  It also felt like it was about 90 degrees in the stairwell.  Eek! As I reached the 80th floor, I got a giant smile on  my face – I knew the end was near.  I could feel the wind from 6 floors above!  As I reached 85, I kicked a notch and ran up the last set of stairs for the day and out the door.  I rounded the corner to the finish line with the NY skyline in the background.  Doesn’t get much more awesome than that!  I’m pretty sure I raised my hands and had the biggest smile on my face:-)  Simply awesome.

Once finished, I immediately felt my lungs burning.  They were simply on fire!  Thankfully water was immediately available but holy smokes – FIRE IN THE HOLE.  The feeling is very similar to those of you that have done track indoors or the mile run.  OUCH.  I think there was a valid reason though – take a look at my heart rate.  Immediately it jumped to my max.  Whew.  It looks like I ran a 5k – guess it’s a great workout for training for one?

After walking around a bit to cool down, I found the elevators to head down to meet @worldrunner.  Upon entering, the first words out of the recording were “We hope you enjoyed your experience.”  The entire elevator went from deadly silent to an eruption of laughter.  I met up with my awesome spectator and gathered our stuff to head to Clinton Street Baking Company for a celebratory brunch. YUMMY.  Pancakes are delicious but if there’s a half hour wait on the weekday I can’t imagine what it’s like on the weekend!!

Final thoughts: I would definitely do this again.  I missed beating 20 minutes by 3 seconds – unfinished business.  Plus I know if I actually trained I’d probably have a half decent time.  I also wouldn’t run like a bat out of hell up the first few flights of stairs.  That ultimately will be the death of you as I’m sure that helped my heart rate sky rocket IMMEDIATELY.

Special shout-out to ALL that supported me today and in the days leading up to this activity.  It really helped me mentally prepare for this event.  So thank you VERY much.

Check out: http://www.nyrr.org/resources/video/misc/2010/esbru.asp for my cameo.  At the women’s start and about 3:48 into the video:)

Up next? I must get in the pool.  Triathlon in June. Eek.

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Last minute thoughts

Well, here we are.  The night before another race.  I’ve got my outfit picked out: TRD tank top, red shorts, and my new Mizuno Inspires.  Wait?  Tank top? Shorts? But it’s February in NYC…. Oh yeah, that race!  86 flights of stairs to the top of the Empire State Building!  And so begins 2010…the year of “what the hell, go do it.”

I’m sitting here thinking about it.  I’m a 6 marathon veteran, 20+ half marathons and who knows how many other races but this race has definitely given me pre-race jitters.  I have absolutely no idea what to expect.  But I think that’s what makes it so exciting.  It’s a first.  There’s something special about those first time experiences.

Thanks to all that have put up with my anxiety the past few days.  It’s time to rumble.  Me, you ESB…game on!  See you in the morning!

ESB

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This is my first speech I’m giving in my Toastmasters club.  The idea is you can talk about yourself and just do something for 4-6 minutes.

“Life is a Marathon”

How many people in the room have completed a marathon? Interesting, I think for the most part every one of us has and are in the mist of a marathon.  As most of you know, running is a pretty important part of my life and I have run several marathons (six to be exact and have begun to train for #7 on April 19).  Running a marathon is similar to life in that it teaches you several things, among them perseverance, overcoming mental and physical challenges, dedication, luck, excitement and the ability to believe in yourself.  Running a marathon you experience these things within a few hours instead of over a lifetime.

Challenges are a part of life.  One such mental challenge to me was my move to New York City about 7 years ago.  I graduated from Penn State University, not exactly a sprawling metropolis by any means.  The campus is made up of 40,000 college aged kids.  How I ended up in NYC is a lucky occurrence in itself.  I had no intentions of moving to NYC.  I remember visiting NYC my parents one summer before my junior year of college and stating the following: “It’s a great place to visit but I could never live here.”  Oh, did I learn to eat my words.  Anyway, one cold and snowy December day, I decided to sign up for an interview on campus…a couple months later I was called to NYC by F+K for an interview and two weeks after graduating from Penn State I was packing up from everything I knew and moving to NYC.  I knew not a single person, moved in with a stranger I had spoken on the phone with and met once to sign the lease for my new apartment on the UES, starting a new job and essentially knew nothing about the city.  I always joke about the fact that if you asked me where Brooklyn was I’d say that’s part of NY?  (side note: I just bought an apartment in Brooklyn this year).  I’m still amazed I’ve been able to just throw out all fear and move out here.  It hasn’t been without its ups and downs but overall I love it here.  My parents kept my car for a year because they were certain I would be coming back to Philadelphia.  They did not see this coming!  7 years later and I have no intentions of leaving.

As far as physical challenges, the marathon definitely is one that seems unbelievable to carry out.  Believe it or not, I was not always a runner.  I started running about 6 years ago.  My dad had tried to get me to run for years but I always resisted.  Why do I want to do that? It’s boring.  I hate running.  I did try several times between high school track, races my dad trained me for and races with my mom (you’re a black sheep in my family if you don’t run).  Each time met resistance as I would resort to other activities such as softball and basketball.  I still remember running my first race at 8 years old with my dad and hating every minute of it.

Finally, I decided just as moving to NYC is a challenge I needed a new challenge and decided to sign up for the NYC Marathon lottery in 2004.  Sure enough, I got in on my first try! Yikes, now what?  I met a fellow runner, Susan, for a run in Central Park one cold March evening for a run.  She had gotten in as well!  For four months, I’d wake up early for runs, train on the weekends and dedicate myself to making sure I cross that finish line. Six months later I was running through the five boroughs of NYC.  What an amazing experience and I’ll be giving it a go again in November this year – not to mention I’ll be running the Boston Marathon on April 19th!

Unlike a marathon I run, the marathon of life is a continuing experience.  No one really knows how and when it will turn.  However, for me I’ve learned to enjoy life and continue to challenge myself both mentally and physically.  Finding running for me has helped me learn to love life but each of us has something to make their marathon happen. Also, never say you will never do something because I certainly have learned – you can do anything you put your mind to!

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Stairs, please!

Well it seems my year of insanity has started with a bang. In a moment of haste, I submitted an application to participate in the Empire State Building run-up. Yes, folks, I will be going up 86 floors via stairs. Apparently, this is fun?! 🙂

Course Description: There are 1576 steps, for a total of 1,050 feet in elevation.  The stair width is40 inches and the length is 7.5 inches.  Each story has two flights of stairs, separated by a landing.  The length of a flight varies and there are six different flight patterns on the ascent.

Love this. I love that I’m just going for it. After all, I did say I was going to make 30 count. Let’s do this!

By the way, Boston training has started. 14 miles last weekend in sub 20 degree weather and crazy wind. Looks to be a repeat weekend. Game on!

No quit. Just getting it done. How about you?
Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

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