More good things

June 30, 2010 at 3:37 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

We had an excellent turnout last night for Team R2R’s first group run of 2010!

A few more good things to be grateful for, all of which we had last night, that are essential for a major undertaking like training for a marathon:

  1. The bag drop! Having someone to watch your stuff makes everything so much easier. You don’t have to run around with the extra weight of keys, ID, money, etc. Thank you to the Alzheimer’s Association volunteer who helped us out!
  2. Having a big group of people to run with. That way, you’re bound to find someone who has a similar pace to you who can be your buddy. Having a buddy is the best. You push each other.
  3. Team spirit! Lame, right? But it’s there and you can feel it. Don’t pretend you can’t. It’s pushing you, too.

Tonight I’m running solo on the West Side Highway and I’ll be debuting…

….

….

SHORTS! Not like the last pair. These are short tights – you know, bike shorts. Cool and refreshing without the chafing. I hope!

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A funny milestone

June 29, 2010 at 2:54 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

This morning, my horoscope said “This is a terrific day for you, Meghann, as long as you let it be, and realize that in spite of everything, you are actually on top of the world.” Totally perfect after yesterday’s post, right? So, I’m rolling with it.

I’ve been looking at my recent runs and times and I realize that I’ve gotten a bit faster. I’ve even crossed a funny milestone. When I started running, I thought a 10-minute mile was the slowest you could be. Wrong! I probably trained at about 11:30/mile last year. But this year, since I’ve been running more and more consistently, my times have improved. And, over the last month, my training runs have consistently been under 10 minutes/mile. So now, I can congratulate myself on finally being faster than the slowest I thought anyone could possibly be!

And it just goes to show that a little hard work goes a long way. When you put in the miles, there will be results.

Post-race Sunday, with our medals. Much more attractive than the shots I posted yesterday!

Team R2R’s first group run of 2010 is tonight! Can’t wait to see the team.

Oh! And…

June 28, 2010 at 8:10 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

…I an ALSO grateful for being featured today in Real Fit Mama’s “I’m a Vegetarian” series!

Please check it out here!

A little perspective and a visit from Prince Harry

June 28, 2010 at 4:48 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

(In case you haven’t noticed) I’m kind of a complainer. I get grumpy easily. People make me mad all the time (especially on the subway!). I whine and moan about all the things I have to do, about going to work and making dinner and keeping to my running schedule and finding time for fun and everything else you can imagine.

But what’s the point?

Yesterday, I ran the Achilles Hope & Possibility 5 mile race in Central Park with my R2R teammate Tricia and my friend Danielle, who was in town for the weekend. Danielle had only run one race before this one – a 5K – but I promised her she could do it and loaded on the peer pressure until she relented.

(I was clearly very excited to be running!)

I’m so glad this was the race I forced her to run, because it’s the best race ever. It’s hard not to feel like the luckiest person in the world just to have two legs to walk on after seeing some of the incredible people out there Sunday morning. There were people with all kinds of devastating injuries, including children, just 3 or 4 years old, who still managed to run or walk 5 whole miles (in intense heat, no less). It was beyond inspiring. And I know I have nothing to complain about. I should be grateful every time I lace up my sneakers and have the opportunity to go for a run.

There was also a very special guest at this race! We were lucky enough to be right near the start line when Prince Harry arrived and greeted the people participating in the wheelchair race. It was just so charming to see him in his race bib like a regular guy.

It was not a fast race for us, and that’s fine. The point was to finish, and to walk away feeling grateful for everything we have, including the ability to run the race on our own two feet. It was hot and muggy, but I felt great the whole time.

P.S. Top photo credit goes to Brian, and the Harry pics are courtesy Tricia. Thanks guys!

Race report: Trust no one

June 25, 2010 at 6:06 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | 3 Comments

I have no idea how I did last night!

Well, I have an idea. I have a couple of ideas, and that’s the problem. I don’t know who to trust.

According to New York Road Runners, I finished in 30:24. It’s okay. Clearly not under 30 minutes, but not by much. And there were a lot of mitigating circumstances, including ridiculous crowds and a temperature of 97 degrees. So, not bad, considering.

BUT! According to my faithful Garmin, we ran 3.43 miles in 30:23. We hit the 3 mile mark at 26:31. If that’s true, it’s a serious world record! But I don’t know if I trust it. It seems crazy. We were going fast, but were we really that fast? My Garmin has never lied to me before, but I can’t be sure.

As we were leaving the race, a gentleman saw that we were wearing Garmins and asked us what distance we had registered. He had 3.23; I had 3.43; Chuck had 3.71 (!). So bizarre! We could only conclude that how wide we took our turns affected the distance. Or perhaps some of those big tall Wall Street buildings got in the way of our satellites?

So I don’t know exactly how I did last night. What I do know is that I definitely beat the old time by almost 6 minutes. I also know that running with a friend is great fun (thanks Tricia!) and makes any race better.

Next stop: Prince Harry and I are running the Achilles Hope and Possibility 5 miler on Sunday. Anyone else going to be there?

P.S. Thanks for your patience as I transition to the new address! Things will be looking more normal soon, I promise!

The race to end all races

June 24, 2010 at 6:13 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

For me, the race to end all races is not the New York City Marathon. It’s not a marathon at all.

It’s a 3 mile race on the streets of Lower Manhattan.

It was the first race I ever ran, long before I ever contemplated running a marathon. I barely trained, and it seemed impossibly long. I think I finished somewhere in the 45 minute range.

I ran it again at the beginning of marathon training last year. (You may have read my previous posts about that race and the 5K distance.) I had been training for over a month at that point and I really believed I was going to finish in under 30 minutes. Needless to say, I was devastated when my final time was 36:01.

But now!

Now I have been a consistent runner for over a year. I have completed a 5K in 28:30, both officially and in training. I can definitely do this. I have to do this.

Finishing this race in under 30 minutes will make me feel legit. It’s a small goal, really. But maybe that’s why it’s so huge. I thought it was a small goal last year and that’s why it hurt so much when I didn’t make it. I felt like a fool.

Well, fool no more, I hope. Fingers crossed.

Runs across the U.S.A.

June 23, 2010 at 6:05 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | 4 Comments

Now, where was I?

When last we met, it was the night before the women’s mini 10K in Central Park on June 12. That race was super fun and I felt awesome! I ran the whole way with Laura and we had such a nice time. The six miles flew by. Seriously. And we beat Paula Radcliffe! Okay, that part isn’t true. But it was still a really nice day. According to my Garmin, which I stopped when we took a bathroom break, we finished in 1:01:07. Our official finishing time was around 1:05, I think. They gave us carnations.

Later that afternoon I traveled to Rhode Island, and there, on Sunday, I did a pre-mapped 3.1 in my parents’ neighborhood. The Garmin wasn’t working (really I just didn’t know what button to press), so I guesstimated pace. I was rushing to make it home for dinner and I finished in 28:30. Pretty speedy for me!

Monday night, back to New York; Tuesday morning, last run in the city before vacation. I did 5 miles over my usual route on the West Side Highway. It was okay. I did 5.01 miles in 49:32. I stopped the watch every time I stopped for water. Is that allowed? I thought it’s what you’re supposed to do but it feels so wrong!

And then we vacated the city!

Wednesday morning we woke up in San Francisco and the very first thing we did was go for a run! Are you SO proud? We were supposed to do 4 miles, I think, but we only did 3 because we didn’t really know where we were going and the streets were really crowded. We were quite slow, too. I think we finished in about 33 minutes.

Afterwards, we went to the San Francisco Giants game.

Thursday we took some time off from running and did some exploring instead.

Friday morning I dragged myself to the hotel gym to get some miles in. It looked like it was too chilly to go outside. I had a grand old time on that treadmill! It had full cable and I was able to watch What Not to Wear. It was such a pleasant way to pass the time. I thought I might only be able to squeeze out 3 miles, but I happily did 4, and by the end, I had the treadmill at 6.5 – I finished in 41 minutes. Having something interesting to watch makes all the difference on the mill. (Chuck ran too, but outside.)

We rewarded ourselves with lunch at Chez Panisse.

And dinner at the French Laundry!

More to come tomorrow.

In the meantime, our usual run tomorrow in the park is being replaced by the Wall Street Heart Run. It’s just 3 miles, but it’s through city streets and lots of fun. Please come!

Oh, hello!

June 22, 2010 at 5:08 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

You missed me, yes?

I missed you too. But mostly I was totally engrossed in enjoying vacation!

Not to worry, though. Lots of running ensued! I didn’t exactly make my goal last week, but I came close enough, I think. Especially considering that I didn’t run at all on my last vacation!

I’m playing a desperate game of catch up today, so no time to post, but here are a few pictures to hold you over until tomorrow.

Back again soon!

Run report: A little extra distance

June 11, 2010 at 4:02 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

It rained until about 6:29 last night, but a small group of people were brave enough to meet in the park for our weekly run.

We started out a little fast for me, so by the 2nd mile I had to hang back, but I wasn’t behind by much. I had the Garmin again and I was able to pace myself carefully. I wanted to do 10 – 10:30 miles. I ended up being a bit faster – all of the miles were under 10, except for mile 4 which was over 11. (I was running with Coach B and we had to stop and chat with people during that mile – he is the Mayor of the Loop, after all!) When we were done, the Garmin told me that we had done 5.14 miles (in 51.33)! Who knew? All this time I had been throwing in a little extra distance.

In case I didn’t make it perfectly clear before, ohmygod I love the Garmin. I thought it might be the outdoor equivalent of watching the display on the treadmill (which I have completely given up – I am now a towel addict), but it’s not at all. It’s great to know how fast and far I’m going. I feel like I’m starting a whole new era as a runner!

Tomorrow I’m running NYRR’s women-only Mini 10K (their oldest women-only race). I am excited! Kara Goucher and Paula Radcliffe, two of the most accomplished female runners in the world, are running (they’re both pregnant, so not racing to win).

I’m also excited because this is my FIRST 10K! I’ve run 6 miles a billion times (okay slight exaggeration), but never in a race. I have a tiny dream about finishing in under an hour, but that’s might be crazy. The course is clockwise in the park, which always messes me up. I am a creature of habit.

One last thing: our fundraising pages for the Marathon are up and running! I would be so grateful for any small donation you can make towards the cause. My page is here.

Is anyone else running tomorrow?

Have a great weekend!

A runner is a runner

June 10, 2010 at 2:23 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

In the June issue of Runner’s World, there’s a Pearl Izumi ad that made me sad, at first, and then really angry.

The paragraph on the next page begins, “The marathon used to be an elite athletic contest. These days, it’s an all day affair where some people mosey across the finish line seven hours after they started.”

I searched online and found that Pearl Izumi has been running ads like this for a few years, and even has a website for the campaign: www.wearenotjoggers.com.

One of the things I love about running (or what PI might call jogging) is the community. Everyone I’ve met through training has been so kind and encouraging. So why develop an ad campaign that cuts people down? Where does this negativity com from? Slow or fast, a runner is a runner. The day you go for your first run – whether it’s 5 feet or 5 miles – is the day you become a runner. And I doubt that anyone who finishes a marathon in 7 hours would say that they “moseyed” across the finish line.

This campaign is mean spirited and unnecessary. I genuinely don’t understand why Pearl Izumi needs to be outright cruel to slower runners. But I know for sure that I will never buy any of their products.

In other news.

Last night’s run was one of those when my body told me to stop and I had to listen. I didn’t fuel before I went to the gym, and my lunch was pretty small, so I felt weak. I need to remember to always eat something before I run. The trick is finding foods that don’t sit like a rock or cause other tummy trouble. My favorite pre-run snack is the classic peanut (or almond) butter sandwich. Protein and carbs = perfection.

I ended up doing 2 miles in 20.30.

The weather is starting to look questionable for tonight, but I refuse to cancel another Thursday run! So please join us at the Columbus Circle entrance to Central Park at 6:30. We’ll be on the grass near the entrance to the loop this time.

Hope to see you!

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