Archive for December 2013

Hot Chocolate, Cold Toes: NYC RUNS 10K Race Recap

Today I ran the Hot Chocolate 10K in Riverside Park- my first NYC RUNS race!

Bib and nearly demolished swag!

Bib and nearly demolished swag!

Yesterday, I ran down to Columbus Circle to grab my bib. The pickup was at the New York Running Company and not only did I get a bib, but they gave us a free mug too. I was glad I planned to take the train back home because I had enough trouble holding onto my mug/bib/bag as it was and I kept smacking the mug into things.  Luckily, I did manage to whisk it home without a chip  😉

This morning we woke up way too early since we got used to heading out for 8:30 races, even though this morning’s race wasn’t until 10. In fact, the mister and I got to riverside park so early we watched almost the entire 5K race- which began at 9. Opps.

Observation #1: This race was small (in a good way)! I’m pretty sure there were only  about 250 runners for the 10K race. It reminded me of my cross country days because you had a very good sense of where you were in the pack and what sort of progress you were making moving ahead (or falling back).  I loved this size race. The volunteers and race organizers were also incredibly enthusiastic and personable.

Observation #2: I knew Riverside Park was hilly, but damn, Riverside Park was hilly! I’ve run through several times on my way to the West Side Highway, but apparently I always missed the actual hills.  This also made me question some hilly, er, mountainous runs I’ve been planning….

Observation #3: I’m pretty sure I actually injured myself on this run. I’m not sure if it was the cold, or the change in incline for me, or too much time off from being sick, but somewhere between mile 4 and 5 I felt it in my foot. It’s a muscle pain roughly from my big toe to the middle/top area of my foot. I’m hoping it’s just a rouge pain, worse case a minor sprain? Either way, as it was happening I immediately realized how stupid it would be to injure myself on a run that a) doesn’t count as marathon qualifying credit when b) I have one race left for my 9+1 and c) that race happens to be a 9 mile race. Gosh. Golly.

"Thank god that's over." Bashful as I may look, I'm trying not to cough a lung.

“Thank god that’s over.” Bashful as I may look, I’m trying not to cough a lung.

In the meantime, I had a race to finish, and at 0:51:52, I hit some of my best placement stats to date! I was 8/88 in the women’s 20 to 29 division, and 47/250 (ish) overall. Sweet!

It was also an unusual day because I met up with a co-worker who was also running and this was here first race. She killed it and came in just under 1 hour. Something tells me it won’t be her last either…

The Coldest Mile….er, The Coldest FOUR Miles: Race to Deliver 4M

Cold Runners

Cold Runners and I, in my subtle neon orange hat- courtesy of the mister.

Sunday before Thanksgiving, 4,689 poor souls gathered in  Central Park to be tortured to run 4 miles. I, for better or worse, was one of them. All week I had my eye on the weather and all week I knew it was going to be a cold one.

Wind Chill Factor: feels like 11 degrees.

Wind Chill Factor: feels like 11 degrees.

23 degrees cold. As we stood in the corral, the announcer then added: with the wind chill, it really felt more like 11 degrees. 11 degrees. And I was still sick.

The race began, and from the first step to the last my calves were so cold I felt like from the knee down I was running on glass vases. It was so cold, that at the first water station, the runner immediately in front of me picked up a cup, only to throw it away in disgust. As I discovered a moment later, there was about a half inch of ice on the cup, sealing the water beneath it. Nothing a good crack couldn’t clear up, but still! Come ‘on!

The finish line, in fact, featured a volunteer proclaiming like a circus barker: “Ice cold, hot water up ahead! Get your ice cold, hot water up ahead.”

The finish line also featured a cheer squad! And they were awesome, cheering for every single runner as we came across the finish line. And as brutal as this race was, it was a for a great charity called God’s Love We Deliver which provides and delivers meals to New Yorkers living wither serious illness.

I finished in 00:32:25. Not a race for the record books, but an interesting experience nonetheless. Even last winter when I was running outside, I always curtailed my outdoor running in sub 30 degree weather.

This past year I’ve run on Mountains, all over my hometown, in torrential downpours, in 98 degree heat, in 80% humidity, at the first hint of daybreak, and in the dying glow of twilight… And now I can add “in eskimo weather” to that list. And even though these were-by far– the most painful 4 miles I’ve run all year, it’s fun to face new environmental challenges and figure out how to adapt accordingly.