Race Recap | Rock n Roll Brooklyn Half Marathon

Another sister race in the books!! Marissa and I signed up to run this race when registration first opened back in March. It was the inaugural RnR in Brooklyn, and since we’ve heard such amazing things about the other RnR races, we definitely wanted to give it a try in my “backyard”.  The registration fee was only $50 if you signed up with the early-bird special, so we were sold.

This summer between the Mayflower Brewery Half in June and this race in October, I really didn’t run that much. I was CrossFitting 4-5 times a week, and felt strong from that, but I am SO BAD at running when its at all over 70 degrees. I think I did one run in July that was 6ish miles, and another 5-6 miler in September, and pretty much called that “training for the RnR half”. #FAIL. Good news: I can totally run a half without training at this point which means my body is used to the pain. Bad news: my time was pretty slow. Who cares though, right?! As my dad would say, they don’t ask you HOW, they ask you HOW MANY.  (Though if you are 32 and running for fun, maybe no one actually asks you how many?!) Anyway, count it.

if you can't have fun, don't do it

if you can’t have fun, don’t do it

I didn’t get to the expo for this race since it was in Brooklyn on Thursday and Friday, and I just couldn’t get over there from work. The RnR team allowed you to register to pick up your bib on race day though, which was pretty awesome. Roo and I both opted for that, so headed to race day with no bib! Slightly nerve-wracking!

We woke up at 4:30am, ate peanut butter on Eggo waffles, and drove to Brooklyn. We parked in a lot pretty easily, and walked to Grand Army Plaza to pick up our numbers. I am not going to bore you with the logistics of packet pick-up and security for the race, but if you’ve heard anything about it on social media so far, you’ll know it was absolute crap. We didn’t even get through security to get into our corral until 7:30, and the race was supposed to start at 7:00am. There were also VERY limited number of porta-potties, so instead of waiting in line for one before my corral crossed the start line, I started the race and then waited in line for a couple minutes at the first bathrooms I saw on the course. I would NEVER do that, especially if I was trying to PR, but the struggle was real, and I knew I wasn’t going to run that fast anyway. They had serious bathroom issues on this race course! There were lines everywhere. Anyway. Moving on…

was I having fun?

was I having fun?

I thought the course (other than the bathroom sitch) was really well laid out. After having run a couple races in Prospect Park (here and here), and most recently the airbnb Brooklyn Half, I’ve run many of the streets in that area, but never in this particular order. The hills were rolling, but it also had long flat stretches. I was keeping a decent pace of 9:30/9:45 for the first 6 miles or so, which felt fine considering I hadn’t run in many weeks.

Around mile 8 or so there was an out and back turn around, and that’s where I started to slow my pace a bit.  I walked a few water stations to drink more, and ate more Gu Chomps. It was a beautiful day, but creeping on 65 degrees. Warm!

Mile 10 brought us back into Prospect Park to finish up that rough hill on the northwest side, and then back downhill to the finish. I never felt like I couldn’t run any more, but from miles 10-13 I was reallllllly looking forward to being done with the race. I never had to walk (other than to drink water), so counting this as a win.

rocknroll

Immediately upon crossing the finish line, I took my iPhone out of my SpiBelt and dropped it, shattering the screen into a million pieces. Awesome.

The short of it: I won’t be racing out to do any more RnR races. The bands weren’t even loud, and I think there were about four of them, TOTAL. RnR has a lot of improvements to make before folks would be excited to run that Brooklyn race again. I did like the course though, and I felt pretty good running, so I’ll give it a solid B-. That’s still passing, right?

Official time: 2:17.58 (10:32 pace)

Congrats to our friend Erin Hozack for running her FIRST HALF! You rock.

BFH for EVA

BFH for EVA

And, as always, congrats to my sister and best running partner ever.

we do it for the bubbly

we do it for the bubbly

What’s next?!

Week 5 | Brooklyn Half Training

Week 5 was my last week of real work before taper time and race week! Here’s how it went.

Monday – CrossFit – easy 2K recovery row after the Long Island 10K (PR!), some back squats and push-ups.
Tuesday – Fartlek run: 2 mins on, 2 mins off times FOUR. This was a tough workout for me. I warmed up, and when I was hitting the “on” two mins, I was pacing around 7:45/7:50. When I was “off”, a few times I had to walk for 15/20 seconds to get my breathing back under control. ~4 miles of work
Wednesday – REST
Thursday – Tempo Thursday! My splits were 9:39/9:17,8:49, 8:53, 8:45/9:22. This was a pretty hilly morning run, and my last “long” tempo run until the race.

love my driveway art!

love my driveway art!

Friday – Flew down to Florida for vacation, so Friday became an unplanned rest day, even though I was supposed to do around 4 miles of workout. Ya win some, ya lose some!
Saturday – The Players at Sawgrass. No running!

17th Hole at Sawgrass

17th Hole at Sawgrass

Sunday – Mother’s Day run with my mom straight to the best diner in Florida! ~ 4.5 miles

Happy Mother's Day to us!

Happy Mother’s Day to us!

 

Race Recap | Long Island Festival of Races 10K

I do a fair amount of traveling for races, so its always nice when there is a great one right in my own backyard. This was my third time running in the Long Island Festival of Races, and my second time running the 10K as part of Team WSA. We have a big group of CrossFit516’ers that run, and the weather is always perfect (I might have just jinxed us for next year!).  I ran the half-marathon last year, but it was only 3 weeks after Boston and I was in a lot of pain still. This year, since I am training for the Brooklyn Half on May 16th, the 10K was the perfect distance and fit into my training program really well. My coach, Race Pace Jess, had an 11 mile run on the plan for that day, and its always nice to get a big chunk of the mileage done in a race setting to practice for the “real deal”.

We picked up our bibs Friday night, and its really such an easy process there. The expo is pretty small, so I was in and out in 5 minutes. I always run better when I have pizza the night before, so we headed to Borelli’s for some delicious pie.

I set my alarm for 5:30, and ran 2 easy peasy miles before we even left Manhasset to start cutting into the 11 miles I was supposed to do that day. Ideally I could have run 2 miles straight into the starting line of the race, but due to security in that area, it really wasn’t possible. This was the best I could do! We got a few group pics, and we were off!

Team WSA!

Team WSA!

The start of the 10K race was REALLY crowded. I stuck to the left side of the overpass and just tried to get around as many people. I was already warmed up, and I could feel that the 3 miles I had already put in were helping me out. Typically my first two miles of any run are my worst, so I was able to settle into a faster pace right from the start. Lesson learned; this is why people warm up before races!! It really works!!

The course takes you around the outside of Eisenhower Park, past the beautiful golf course, and a neighborhood with some cheering fans. Its relatively flat, with a few rollers on the 4th and 5th mile. Nothing too crazy though. I felt like I was holding a really strong pace throughout, and actually didn’t stop at a single water station (probably not smart). I just didn’t want to get out of sync. Going into this race, my PR was 53:41, so I wanted to beat that. I also had a stretch STRETCH goal of being a sub 50 minute 10K-er one day, but didn’t think I was actually trained up enough to get that close. When I crossed the finish line in 51:11, I was SHOCKED and really proud. That is a PR for me, and its not even THAT far off from 49:49!

Here are my splits:

8:36
8:11
8:06
8:09
8:21 (hills, dammit!)
8:01
2:01 (last .2)
51:11. PR!

When we got back to Manhasset, I finished off the day with the last 3 miles of my training plan to bring my daily mileage to 11. Like I said before, its not the ideal way to do a long run (by breaking it up) but it was the best I could do to get in all the miles.

 

Week 2 | Brooklyn Half-Marathon Training

I decided to take this year OFF from the 26.2 distance, and focus more on 13.1. The half-marathon distance is by far my favorite, because it is a significant distant but the training doesn’t completely consume my life. So far this year I’ve run two half-marathons, Disney and New York City, both with fairly little training. I was CrossFitting 4-5 days a week, but the harsh winter conditions kept me off the road. I had been following Jess Underhill on Twitter and reading her blog for a while, and when she started posting about her 6-week Brooklyn Half training program, I was intrigued. Even though I’ve trained for races in the past, I’ve never had individual 1:1 programming that was based off of ME as a runner, and not just a pre-planned weekly marathon training plan that worked for all novice runners. I emailed Jess, and after our first phone conversation, I knew I wanted to be on her team of #racepacerunners. I was all in! The programming includes CrossFit two days a week, but as we get closer to Brooklyn, I’m going to drop that to one day. Everyone knows I absolutely love CrossFit, but for the next six weeks I want to spend more time running and see if I can actually achieve my goal on May 16th at the Brooklyn Half.

Week 2 – April 13-19

Monday – CrossFit – 1RM back squat (150#), then 15-12-9-6-3 of: toes to bar & push-ups
Tuesday – 5 mile tempo run in my brand new New Balance 890s. I wore the 890s from last year during the NYC Marathon, and really loved them so wanted to get another pair to rotate through mileage. These are the v5 model and I am in love.

New Balance 890 V5

New Balance 890 V5

Wednesday – Rest
Thursday – CrossFit: Ladies’ Night WOD at CrossFit Port Washington.

CrossFit Port Washington WOD + Wine

CrossFit Port Washington WOD + Wine

Friday – 35 minute run, including some stride work (came out to just over 4 miles)
Saturday – Long run – 7 hilly sister-run miles with my Roo Roo and a FAST FINISH!

USA!

USA!

Sunday – Rest

Weekly Mileage – 16

NYC Marathon Training | Week 5

I am on Week 7 of the 17 week CrossFit Endurance War Horse Marathon Training plan, and here is what my week looked like:

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Monday – Rest because I did the Brooklyn 10 Miler the day before.

Tuesday – Interval workout: 1 minute ladder: 1 min on, 1 off, 50 sec on, 50 off . . . down to 10 sec on 10 sec off, back up to 1 minute. This was pretty rough, especially building back up to the 1 minute on. When I was “on” I tried to stay 7:30/8:00 min mile pace, and then “off” was more like 9:45/10:00 min mile pace and I attempted to recover my breathing.

Wednesday – Rest

Thursday – CrossFit516 partner WOD with Kim and Astrid. 1.5 miles of running, a lot of box jumps, and wall balls to cap it off.

Friday – Track workout: 16 Rounds of: 20 sec on, 10 sec off. I used the same pacing from Tuesday, and it felt pretty good. It was about 3 miles of running, with 1 mile warm up and 1 mile cool down.

have I mentioned how much I love these sneakers?

have I mentioned how much I love these sneakers?

Saturday – 7 mile “long” run, even though the training plan called for a 5k time trial. I had just ran (and PR’d) my 5K a few weeks back, so I am going to use that time to set some tempo runs this week. 10:00 min/mile pace.

Port Washington, NY

Port Washington, NY

Sunday – Rest

Mileage: About 15 miles between all the temp and speed work this week.

NYC Marathon Training | Week 4

Can’t believe I have one more week of “real” training under my belt. I’m following the CrossFit WarHorse/CrossFit Endurance Marathon Training Plan pretty much exactly, with the exception of the long run on the weekend. I do tend to make it a little bit longer than CFE calls for in some weeks. Here is how last week shaped up:

MondayCrossFit516 WOD –
For time, 3 Rounds of:
400 m run
15 Deadlifts (185/125)

At the 15 min mark do:

For time:
21 Toes to bar
21 Burpees
50 Double unders
15 Toes to bar
15 Burpees
40 Double unders
9 Toes to bar
9 Burpees
30 Double unders

The 400’s and deadlifts were my kind of workout, and the second half of the workout was just rough. I substituted singles for DUs, but did 3 times the amount of them to make up for it.

Tuesday – CFE Track Workout: 3 Rounds of (200, 400,  600).

CFE: Week 6 Plan

CFE: Week 6 Plan

Wednesday – REST

13 minutes of hell

13 minutes of hell

Thursday – CFE Interval Workout: Death by 10 meters. Do a 10 meter run on minute 1. On minute two, do two 10 meter sprints. Minute three, three sprints. I made it up to 13 minutes before I was DONE!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

FridayCrossFit516 WOD: “Open workout 14.4″

AMRAP in 14 min of:
60 Calorie row
50 Toes to bar
40 Wall balls (20/15)
30 Cleans (135/95)
20 Muscle-ups

I only made it through 10 cleans! Woof! Reminder of why I don’t sign up to do the Open in the winter.

Saturday – REST (and beach!)

Sunday – My CFE plan called for a 60 minute Tempo run @75%, but instead, I did the Battle of Brooklyn 10 Miler + 2 Extra Training Miles (and beach again!) for a total of 12 miles.

Totals: Around 15 or 16 running miles, including two CFE WODS, and two CrossFit516 WODS.

NYC Marathon Training | Week 3

I got the official news last week that I was chosen to run the NYC Marathon as part of Team MR8! I couldn’t be more proud, or humbled to run 26.2 in honor of Martin. 81 days to go!

Here is what I knocked out last week:

MondayCrossFit516 WOD
AMRAP in 10 min of:

15 Kettlebell swings (35 lbs)
15 Burpees
15 Pull-ups

Rest 5 mins, then do:

AMRAP in 10 min of:
5 Handstand push-ups
10 In place KB lunges (35 lbs)
30 Double unders

TuesdayCrossFit Endurance War Horse Marathon Training Week 5 Interval Workout: 1 mile warm-up, 8 Rounds of 30 sec on, 20 sec off. 1 mile cool-down.

Wednesday – Rest

ThursdayBeverly Homecoming 5K + 3 miles added on as a “cool-down”, 6.1 miles. CFEndurance Warhorse Marathon Plan called for 10K time trail, so I thought this was pretty close!

finishers

Friday – CrossFit Variance Dawn Patrol (5:30AM WOD) – SUP WOD. This was the highlight of my week. It was a gorgeous morning, and the water was warmer than I expected! We paired up, and while one person was paddling out to a buoy and back (around 6-7 minutes of paddling), the other person was running in the sand with a sand bag. BevHud and I did three rounds.

Screen Shot 2014-08-12 at 2.56.09 PM

 

Saturday – 7 HOT miles on the Rail Trail, 9:57/mile pace

Screen Shot 2014-08-12 at 2.55.59 PM

Sunday – 6 hour drive from Boston — > Manhasset. “Rest”

Totals: 2 CrossFit WODs, 1 CF Endurance Track Workout, 16 running miles.

13 Runner Questions

My first blogger quiz!  I loved reading Kim’s answers, and I hope that mine are even a little bit interesting to you!

What is your best run ever – My B.R.E. was definitely the Chicago Marathon in 2006. I had just finished my last chemo treatment in February 2006, and I finished 26.2 miles 6 months later. At the time, it was the best day of my life, and I’ll never forget how the tears stung my eyes as I crossed the finish line. Goosebumps. I was BACK.

Chicago Marathon 2006 (that's me in the front in the purple)

Chicago Marathon 2006 (that’s me in the front in the purple)

3 words that describe my running – Competitive, sweaty, and musical (always have my headphones on).

 What is your go-to running outfit?  – Mizuno Wave Rider 17, lululemon socks (they will change your life), lululemon Inspire Crops, a lululemon CRB, and junk brand headband.

Run: Swiftly Turtleneck, lulu crops

Run: Swiftly Turtleneck, lulu crops

What is your one quirky running habit? – I have to end my runs on exactly XX:00 on my Garmin so if I’m pretty close, I’ll do laps in my driveway until I hit an exact mile.

Do you prefer morning, midday, or evening runs? – Always have been, always will be a morning runner

I won’t run outside when it’s… – Over 80 degrees. Ever. I’m sorry. I don’t do well in heat.

What is your worst injury – and how did you get over it? – When I was in college, I had really bad stress fractures from playing field hockey. Since I’ve started doing CrossFit and doing long distance runs, I LUCKILY haven’t been injured. KNOCK ON ALL THE WOOD!

My personal best half marathon or marathon is2014 NYC Half-Marathon. My goal was to go sub-2 hours, and I got 1:54. I was in the best running shape of my life in March.

1:54 for 13.1

1:54 for 13.1

My next race is – NYRR Bronx Ten-Miler on Sept 28. I don’t do a lot of summer races, because we are away so many weekends.

My running goal for 2014 – Sub-5:00 hour marathon, if I am accepted on a team for the NYC Marathon. If not, run sub-1:50 for BAA Boston Half Marathon in October. I would need to shave 4 mins off my PR for this, but it’s a goal!

What GPS do you use? – Garmin Forerunner 10 (in lime green!)

How do you stay motivated in the summer? – Sign up for fall races so that I’ll have things to train for.

What is your favorite post run treat? – beer!

beer.

beer.

Race Re-cap: 5-Borough Series: Queens 10K

The races in the NYRR 5-Borough Series are quickly becoming my favorite races of the year. Starting with the NYC Half-Marathon in March, NYRR organizes one race in each of the boroughs for the year. If you complete 4 out of the 5 races, you gain automatic entry in the NYC Half-Marathon the following year (in this case, 2015). Since that race in particular is so hard to get into, I decided to take on the 4 out of 5 challenge this year and complete the 5-Borough Series.

When I woke up on Sunday (after a horrible night of sleep because I was worried about sleeping through my alarm) at 5:45, the sun was shining and it looked like near perfect weather for running. I even threw on a light long sleeved layer to stay warm. There is nothing worse than being too hot before the race even starts! The plan was to meet two of my great friends from CrossFit516 in Bayside so that we could carpool to the CitiField parking lot. There was a fee of $10 to park, so we saved a little money by driving in together. Needless to say, it is also so much more fun to do these races with friends. The parking situation was really easy, and we fueled up (LaraBars and KIND Bars for all) and headed to race day central.

Stopping for a quick photo opp

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Before we knew it, it was time to head to the corrals to start! NYRR volunteers were being a little strict on the color-coordination for the corrals, but Astrid and I managed to just stick close to our two corrals so we could at least run the first mile together. This is my first race since the Long Island Half-Marathon in early May. That race really kicked my butt (probably too close coming in off the Boston Marathon), but seeing as this race was shorter (6.2 miles), I figured I could probably do it at a decent enough pace. Mainly, I just wanted to have fun, and get my credit towards next year’s half. My secret goal was to run it under an hour.

The race gun went off, and it took us 5 mins to cross the starting line. It was CROWDED. The course was relatively flat, but it didn’t really thin out at all the entire time. Usually that would frustrate me, as I would do more bobbing and weaving than I would like, but I actually didn’t mind it on this course at all. It was great people watching, and helped pass the time. I started to really feel the heat around mile 3. It was HOT. And I forgot sunscreen. Whoops. After mile 4, I was stopping at every water station and alternating water and Gatorade. Huge props to NYRR for setting up the sprinklers, too. Those were clutch.

My favorite part of the race (HA, of course it was the END) was when we approached and then wrapped around the Unisphere in Flushing Meadows Corona Park.

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The crowds were fantastic for the last 0.2 miles, and I was definitely smiling crossing the finish line at 59:08. Eeked that one out! Goal=accomplished!

I’m looking forward to the next installment of the 5-Borough Series in the BRONX!

Special shout out to Astrid & Emilio for crushing this race!

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FlyWheel Back Bay – Add Two!

As a former indoor cycling instructor, I have high standards when it comes to classes. Indoor cycling classes are really only as good as the effort that you are willing to put into it as the rider on the bike, but a good instructor sets the tone, has an insane playlist, and makes me WANT to pedal faster. Its hard to pinpoint the exact things that make a good spin class, but you know when you are in one. Last night, the 6:30pm class at FlyWheel Back Bay was one of the best I’ve ever done.

Led by Ann Unger, the class was fast, sweaty, and loud. My only criticsm is that I am not THAT into the whole weights-while-you-ride thing. I love CrossFit, and full-body workouts, but doing two things at the same time (cycling and tricep curls) was actually really distracting. I would have liked doing a strength workout separate from rowing, but to each their own. The class still rocked. And I have at least two new songs to add to my running playlist.

Can’t wait to go back!

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