4:30 or Bust: A Quest for Marathon Mediocrity

Posts Tagged ‘williamsburg bridge

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…

Written by SCL

December 23, 2009 at 7:17 am

Rather blustery day

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I’ll start out with the bad news, at least for me.  I’ve been really bad lately with my eating habits and over the last couple months, let myself slip to a point I should not have gotten back to.  Stepped on the scale this morning and was shocked, SHOCKED, to see a number that I have not seen since Jan 2007, that I thought I would never see again.  I guess not necessarily shocked, since the numbers have been creeping up, and I ate very poorly yesterday.  So, I guess no suprise really, but hopefully the kick in the arse to clean up my act.  I was so proud of myself in late July.  At that time, for the NYC Tri, my weight was as low as it has been in 15 years.  I guess I stopped caring in the lead up to the NYC Marathon, and then the time off afterwards really did a number on me.  So, add another goal to my pile, but need to get my weight back down a bit to a more comfortable level.

Now, onto the run today.  I’d really like to get to 800 miles for the year, which will require ~93 miles in Dec.  That would be a high mileage month for me.  When not training for anything, I’ll typically get 40-60 miles in a month.  When training for something, I’ll get up to 80-100.  I have no races this month, and am still recovering from injury, but feeling better and so will give this a go.  Will have to add 1 or 2 long training runs to make it, and WILL try.

With that in mind, decided to run the relatively longer 6 mile run out and back over the Williamsburg Bridge.  My running windows in the morning are pretty small, and today I needed to be home by 7:10 so my wife could leave for work.  So, was out of bed by 5:30 and out of the house by 6:00.  Was warm, at 65 degrees, amazing for Dec, but very windy.  Wanted to go with a singlet on top, but have already put them away for winter, so pulled out a short sleeve tech tee instead.

Was really deserted out on the bridge.  Eerily deserted.  Reminded me of this run I did in the middle of winter, when it was 11 degrees and I saw very few people on the bridge.  Today, I was all the way over to the ‘landing’ on the Brooklyn side before I saw anyone else.  First was a couple running, then a guy trying to walk off his drunken state, and then another lone lady.  I guess the rain from last night combined with the wind kept people away.  Or, maybe it was just too early for most other people!  Did see several more people, and bike riders, on the return trip, including the same 3 runners seen the first time over.

Otherwise, this was hard.  The wind was really whipping around, especially up on the bridge.  Kept the pace slow and even and finished at about 10 min per mile.  I’m definitely out of practice with this run, as last time I did it was way back in August!

Made it home by 7:05, then quickly posted it up in my Excel log and on DailyMile, showered, and got my 8 year old up for school, and transitioned into that whole ‘get to school and work routine!’  All said, though, running really is a great way to start the day!

Written by SCL

December 3, 2009 at 6:14 pm

Posted in diet, running

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A Rather Blustery Day

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Was too busy last week to get much exercise in.  I was only able to play softball on Tuesday (7-6 loss in extra innings) and go for a run last Monday night.  The run was a hill workout, over the Williamsburg Bridge and back.  My anger has fizzled over the last week, but I was really mad because the bridge was a total mess.  The north side of the bridge path was closed, for some reason, and the walk, run and bike traffic over the bridge was  completely messed up.  I’m not going to get into all the details, but the bridge needs better signage about where bikers and runners/walkers should stay, the lighting needs to be improved on the Brooklyn side of the south path, and when one of the sides are closed, ALL of the access points to that side need to be properly closed down (for some reason, the cross paths mid bridge were open).  All in all, it was a big fat mess, and hopefully Transportation Alternatives, or some such group, notice this and can open a dialog with NYC about necessary improvements.

Fast forward to today’s activity, a bike ride up to the George Washington Bridge and back.  Decided on a bike ride, rather than swim or run, because it is hard to get a good bike ride in on a weekday after work.  Much easier for me to run or swim on a weeknight, or early in the morning if I was so motivated.  Did not want to ride in Central Park, because I’m sure it would be too crowded.  Also, didn’t have the time for a long bike ride out to Brooklyn or Queens.  Was then left with a ride up to the GW as my best training option.  While the hudson river path is very flat, I figured I would go up the hills to get to the foot of the bridge, and come back down Riverside Drive, which has several hills, to make sure to get a strong workout.  In addition, the strong wind would create additional resistance, to make it feel like a good workout.  I also correctly suspected that the bike path on the west side would not be so crowded due to the cool, cloudy and windy conditions.

The ride up was tough as it was into the wind, although it was a slight cross breeze off the river.  I was a little short on time, so wasn’t able to bike across the bridge to the NJ side.  The way back down was much easier with the wind, and I was able to work up some of the hills on Riverside Drive.  Was thwarted, though, near Columbia, as Riverside was closed for the AIDS walk.  Had to detour around on Broadway to 96th, where I was able to get into Riverside Park.  I see that the AIDS walk also takes up the west side of Central Park, so avoiding the park today was a good move.  (As an aside, this is probably also why the Healthy Kidney 10k was run on Saturday, which is a bit unusual for NYRR events in Central Park.)  Further south, a strong biker passed me around 59th St, and I decided to try to stick with him.  Was able to do so for the 2 miles down to 20th St, where I turned off to head home – was nice to have a pacer!

It must have been a good workout, because I totally passed-out mid afternoon and took an hour plus nap!

Written by SCL

May 17, 2009 at 8:14 pm