Week 26/52 recap
6.7 – 5.41 – 10.98
Six months until the marathon, half way through the year and the 52 weeks I am documenting. I have come from struggling to walk, hurting to push a shopping cart, through physical therapy to strengthen me to pounding out eleven miles with no negative repercussions. My running base is solid, my core strength is getting there and hopefully my mental game will follow.
The week was that of ups and downs. My Dad went home from rehab and my cat Mooch was laid to rest. I had a really successful full core and PT work out but groaned at my over all pace on my daily runs. I am strong, capable and building back in smart ways but I am impatient for it to feel easy. The spring landscape is beautiful but the heat of the next few months will be challenging. Sleep has been hard lately because of caring for Mooch and worrying about family. I want to get cracking on work outs bright and early to start getting in the groove to beat the heat but motivation to rise has been pretty low. Over 2 months without my favorite beers nor gin and tonics hasn’t been so difficult and I think I am actually sleeping better because of it but that is the only sure benefit I can tell.
The end of the week set us into a bit of an emotional tailspin with Mooch’s departure. We were tempted to rally with the diversion of jumping into a local half marathon but realized it wouldn’t be all that great for our training. We are ready to run 13 but in a race it is hard not to push. That could lead us to set backs and injuries. We decided to go to the race to cheer Angie of Marathon Training Academy in the full marathon and continue on to NYC to be with family.
Just over 100 runners were ready to start when we got to the Danville, PA courthouse so it was easy to find Angie. She recognized us and we got to wish her well. Not being in any rush, we decided to find a spot about half way along the course to cheer for her. It was an out and back course and passed through Rupert Covered Bridge at miles 11 and 15. We thought that would be really picturesque and easy to find.
There was an aid station right there with a port-a-pot so it was easy to wait until the runners came by and then cheer them on their out and again on the way back. Angie came in as the 6th woman overall in less than 4 hours. It was great to have something to be excited and happy about after such a hard week.
The trip to NYC went well. We had some wonderful vegan food that I may review on Bacon is NOT an Herb. We planned a Sunday 10+ mile run to got and check out the Queensborough Bridge. The 59th Street Bridge falls 15 miles into the NYC Marathon and a lot of runners struggle with it. It divides the boroughs of Queens and Manhattan and is a long stretch where there are no spectators thus no cheers to distract a runners’ tired legs as they plow up one of the more significant climbs along the course.
We found that it wasn’t that tough a climb, it was just relentless and peaks well after Roosevelt Island. Visually, it looks like when you cross Roosevelt Island in the middle of the East River that the bridge should start to descend but it keeps climbing for quite a bit after. I thought it was good to demystify this section and it made for a fun long run together.
What was not quite as enjoyable was when we returned to Central Park to find our planned route overtaken by the annual 5 boroughs bike tour. We had to snake our way under the East Drive on paths we had never been on before then run on less that easy surfaces alongside the shoulder to shoulder bikes for a while. The section just after Cat Hill had them creeping along and my video shows that I was glad to be a runner along that section.
Soon after that, we had to divert our run to the west side of the park. This was through a bunch of walkers and loose dogs on cobble stone paths until we finally came out near the west drive. The bikes were no on this side of the ark but the runners were still mainly going counter-clockwise and we had to take the gravel bridle path for a while to avoid swimming up-stream. After jumping onto the west drive to get over the 96th St traverse, I suggested we just take our run out onto Central Park West up to 105th. More cobble stones had me blurt out, “I am calling it at 105th.” I meant that I was done running but we were both tired and Jim didn’t know what I meant until I explained. That gave us 10.98 miles including the up and down the 3 flights of stairs were accidentally took to the Roosevelt Island tram carrying water the whole way in my CamelBak. The last few blocks to walk and cool down were very welcome.
I have conquered a lot of obstacles to get me half way through this year to the marathon. I have come so far and have just as long to get even stronger. I plan to make the best of this second half of the year.