4:30 or Bust: A Quest for Marathon Mediocrity

Posts Tagged ‘bike lane

If a tree falls in the forest…

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Last night had a truly wonderful run over the Williamsburg Bridge and back.  Hill run, in windy conditions, while minding the slippery conditions, was completed at 9:17 per mile, a pace I seem to have had a hard time hitting lately.  It was my 13th run in December, and I think the increased workouts are making a difference!

Anyway, was coming up Ave A in the bike lane (LOVE the bike lane here, by the way, so much safer for us runners) and came upon a car parked in the bike lane.  Annoying, but nothing I’ve never seen before, just need to go around.  As I was getting ready to go around the car, a bike comes hurling around in the other direction, and the lady on the bike screams and hits the car as she goes past.

Now, I am a biker as well, and I totally understand the frustration, but really, hitting the car as you go past, on roads that are already slick with slush and ice?  Not smart, and not the best way to get your message across.  If something were to happen, trust me, it would be the ‘crazy’ biker that would get in trouble, and at much higher risk of injury, not the driver in a non-moving vehicle.

The kicker though, as I passed the car, was seeing that nobody was in the car to hear or feel the outburst…

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Written by SCL

December 23, 2009 at 7:17 am

Improved Bike Lane Coming to Allen St?

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My run today to the Williamsburg Bridge took me down 1st Ave and then Allen St to Delancey.  There has been a bike lane on Allen St for as long as I’ve been running down there, but it is a bit of a joke.  Lane was blocked in a couple of spots by long term construction, and in much of the rest of the area, the lane markings have long since  faded away or been obliterated by construction.  So today, I was pleasantly suprised to see new chalked markings on Allen.  Looks like the new bike lane will be on the inside, along the ‘mall’, and protected from traffic by a buffer zone.  Car traffic will be reduced to 2 lanes, from the current 3.

I wonder whether having the bike lane on the inside of the street, at the median, will present another set of problems, namely getting into and out of the the lane, but I think the buffered lane will be a big improvement.  I only hope they get the new paint down quickly, as there is definitely confusion out there.  Some drivers were respecting the old lanes, and some were respecting the chalked outline of the new lanes.  That is clearly a recipe for disaster.  More info on the overall plan from The Lo-Down.

I’ll be running down Allen lots of times as I continue my training for the New York City Marathon.  Looking forward to trying out the new configuration when it is all done!  On a similar note, I’m still loving the bike lane on Ave A.  It really has made Ave A more orderly in terms of car traffic, and much, much safer for runners and bikers.

Written by SCL

August 20, 2009 at 9:24 pm

Posted in Bike Lanes

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Nice 10.3 miler

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After yesterday’s freak out about the Brooklyn Half Marathon, I went out tonight for a 10.3 mile run – my 3 bridges 3 boros course.  Finished in approx 1:40, which included several stops to drink, and one bodega stop by buy a water.  I was very satisfied overall and think I’m in fine shape for the race on Saturday.  I know the Williamsburg Bridge, Pulaski Bridge, and 59th St Bridge will not properly approximate the constant hills in Prospect Park, but it is as close as I can get without running in Prospect Park itself.  

I ran a very strong final 3 miles, and definitely could have done another 3 if in a race condition.  I’m still worried that I might take the hills too hard, and will need to try to hold back a bit, especially in the first loop of the park.  Since they are expecting upwards of 10,000 runners in the race, it will be sufficiently crowded enough to hold us all back a bit, I’m sure.

Biggest and nicest surprise of the run was the newly painted bike lane on Driggs, covering all of my portion on that street (Williamsburg Bridge to McCarren Park).  Good news for runners, and great news for bikers!  Passed at least 20 people using the new lane.  This is a great one to add as a feeder to the bridge.  The biker with a leashed dog trotting alongside seemed a bit dangerous to me, but I guess if you must bike with your leashed dog trotting alongside, better to do it in a bike lane than on the sidewalk or on the main road.  

Anyway, definitely feeling better about the race, as long it is not a hot and humid day.  I still think sub 2 hours is a stretch, but we’ll see how close I can get to it.

Written by SCL

May 25, 2009 at 9:13 pm

6.5 miles

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Circumstances didn’t let me get to the gym Thursday night, the timing was bad for the gym yesterday, and I’m not quite ready for after-dark training rides on my bike, so I went for another run late last night.  Did my 6.5 mile ‘downtown loop’ (see course here).  I like running at nighttime, the later the better, but on Thurday and Friday nights, the street traffic gets pretty bad.  So, rather than stress about the traffic and getting through intersections and all costs, I slowed down the pace, and tried to enjoy the run.  My time was 1:02:06, slower than typical for me on that course, but very enjoyable.  The weather again was just perfect – 53 degrees.  I love this weather for running.

The last 2.5 miles of this run are identical to the run I did on Wednesday night.  What struck me was what had changed in the 2 short days that had gone by. 

First, the ice skating rink at South Street Seaport came down.  It is gone!  On Wednesday, when I passed it, and nobody was skating, I was wondering why that thing was still around and if anyone was still outdoor skating this late in March – doesn’t the allure wear off by Feb?  Well, guess I was right that it was time to go. 

Second, the bike lane on Ave A that was chalked down on Wednesday was painted!  You have no idea how exciting this is for me.  I run up Ave A a lot, and cars generally did a bad job there of keeping to 1 lane.  Even though the bike lane will not stop rogue cars and cabs from doing what they want, I feel like it gives me a ‘right of way’.  With a bike lane, I will stand my ground against cars that are not playing nicely with a lot more confidence.   The bike lane also makes Ave A a more attractive downtown path when on my bike and trying to get down to the Williamsburg Bridge.  I’ll have to try it out soon!

Written by SCL

March 28, 2009 at 8:12 am

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Invigorating run

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Was able to get out for a 5.2 mile run down 1st Ave and East River path down to Wall St and back.  See here for the map taken using my iPhone and GPS.  I was surprised it held the signal underneath the FDR drive – good to know.

Had a fantastic run.  Since it was first run in 8 days, took a little while to loosen up, but then felt really great.  At 44 degrees, the weather was just perfect for me.  Felt really invigorating, especially since today was the first day I felt good after 4 days of being sick.  2nd half of the run was really nice with the wind at my back.

The most exciting news of my run was the trip up Ave A.  They have chalked down the lines for a bike line, all the way from Houston St up to 14th St.  This will make running on Ave A safer for sure, and keep cars from making 2 lanes where there is only 1.  I had been hoping for this since December, when I first noticed the 1 block bike lane on Ave A between 9th and 10th St (see bottom of this post).

Written by SCL

March 25, 2009 at 9:44 pm

Posted in running

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