Monday, February 27, 2012

Getting to Know Queens... and the Start of Something New

After waking up from a slight hangover caused by Miller High Life, I hit the road yesterday to get some mileage in preparation of half-marathon training (more on that in a minute).

I run virtually the same routes all the time, and I’ve begun to get a little bored with them. Not to mention, I have a lot of early-morning races in Central Park this spring, and instead of waiting incessantly for the subway (yes, I’m talking to you G train), I want to have the option of running to the start line. Believe it or not, it’s actually faster to run to Central Park than to rely on the MTA.

So I left the comforts of my beloved Brooklyn and ran over the Pulaski Bridge to Queens. I navigated to the Queensboro Bridge, where there were so many amazing things to take photos of.

I was listening to This American Life, and the podcast “Neighborhood Watch” was one of my favorites so far. It was both hilarious and incredibly sweet, and was the best companion to my great run.

I did a slow 7 miles, which was my longest run since the marathon. I felt so lucky and free to be out on the road doing what I love. I welcomed every incline and muscle ache.

It was the perfect way to kick-off half-marathon training that starts today! Here’s what I’ll be doing for the next 12 weeks.

It’s been almost exactly a year since I became a “runner.” The 2011 Brooklyn Half-Marathon was the first race I trained for, and I was horribly unprepared for it. I did most of my runs on a treadmill and there was no training program to speak of. So by the time I got to mile 9 in the race, my legs were burning, my feet felt like cement, and I had no iPod to distract me from the sun that was beating down on my neck. The race was so bad that it actually almost convinced me not to train for the Cape Cod Marathon.

I may be smiling, but I'm in a lot of pain.
I’ve learned a lot since then. I’m no longer an elitist about running without an iPod – I don’t care what you tell me, Beyonce gets your legs movin’ and that’s a fact. You can never drink enough Gatorade and Vita Coco, and oatmeal is a bad choice for pre-race nutrition (you don’t want me to go into detail about why that is). Lastly, don’t think about it too much – just get out there and enjoy it!

So to prove to myself that I’ve matured a lot in the past year as a runner, I’m training for the 2012 Brooklyn Half, and I plan to beast it.

See you at Coney Island! I'll be the one with the hot dog and beer in hand at 9am.

1 comment:

  1. You won't be the only one with a hot dog and beer in your hand that AM! Great pictures but I have to ask "Miller High Life"? Really?