Monthly Archives: August 2010

Arrival

We made it!

Seriously…I won’t even recount to you the numerous mishaps of the moving adventure.  Suffice it to say that I am still sore from moving boxes down the five flights of stairs from our NYC apartment to the moving truck.  (Apparently we hired the laziest movers on the eastern seaboard.  Our planned departure time of 3 PM on Friday became 10 PM after we ended up having to schlep a good portion of our crap ourselves.)

Anyway.  We are safe and sound in our new apartment in Raleigh.  It is beautiful.  I’m still marveling at the fact that there are two (!) large bedrooms, a washer/dryer, and a fridge with an ice maker.  (Which I’m still learning to operate without unleashing a cascade of cubes that leaves the floor covered in ice.)

Of course I’ve been eating.  Our first dinner in our apartment was take-out grabbed after a monumental Target run:

Chicken kebabs and greek salad from Zoe’s Kitchen.  A fresh, healthy meal was welcomed with open arms after eating fast food on the road all weekend!

And breakfast in the morning, cooked in my gorgeous open kitchen!  I’m going to love cooking here.

Bacon ‘n eggs with a lightly fried bagel (in leftover bacon fat, nonetheless) and lots of fruit. :)

And drinking.  One of the first items on my move-in errand list was a wine run.  I was overjoyed when I spotted a World Market while out and about yesterday!  I had to restrain myself from buying a cart full of candles and placemats and imported cocoa and rice noodles.  I love World Market.  But I resisted and came out with just a few bottles of wine, including this:

Zinfatuation indeed.  Wines with clever names suck me in every time.  This was pretty good though – milder and lighter than I expected, but not watery or overly sweet.  Worth every bit of the <$10 price tag!

And running?  Well…about that.

To be honest, I didn’t run all weekend.  I’d had it in my head that I’d be able to get a semi-long run on on Saturday, but after hours of carrying boxes on Friday and driving until the wee hours of the morning (it was 3 AM by time time we rolled in to our friends’ driveway in DC), it just wasn’t gonna happen.  Rest day.  And Sunday was pretty much a wash, too – more driving, getting our lease signed, and moving our stuff in.  No time or energy for running.

I did manage to get out Friday morning before the chaos began and sneak in a little recovery run on the heels of last Thursday’s brutal tempo run.  All told I did manage to crack 40 miles last week which isn’t too bad.  It just became a step-back week, which I would have taken at some point anyway.

After my two rest days, I set out yesterday morning for an easy 5-miler in the neighborhood.  It was…hot.  I’ll remember this in January, though, when it’s relatively mild here while snowing like a banshee up north.

This week should be interesting, running-wise.  Did I mention we are going to Paraguay this weekend?

More to come on that one….

Time to get back to unpacking.  I hope to return to a normal posting schedule soon, but in the meantime my internet access is limited to trips to the bar across the street, which has free wi-fi and eighty billion brews on tap.  (Which means you’ll be getting beer-fueled posts for a while until we get our own connection set up.  Yay for blogging and drinking!)

Rotating Blogroll: Miss-You Edition

Hey y’all.  I’m probably crammed in the cab of a U-Haul right now – hopefully this “scheduling a post” thing works, I’ve never tried it before!

It’s been a while since the last Rotating Blogroll, and what better time to give a virtual hug to my runner-girls in NYC?  I will miss you all so much!

  • Megan (http://www.runnerskitchen.com) is one of the first CPTC girls I made friends with.  I remember reading her blog when I was thinking about joining the team and thinking that she seemed really genuine and fun.  Of course, I was right. :)  I will miss our long runs (don’t know what I am going to do without my long run buddy!) and fro-yo dates (I’m sure there’s yogurt in NC, but no Forty Carrots!)  Anyway, I’m really looking forward to watching her run a killer NYC marathon this year.  She has been on a PR-smashing kick all summer. :)
  • Sarah (http://www.washingtonranhere.wordpress.com) is one of the funniest girls I’ve ever met.  She has a serious knack for writing blog posts that make me laugh out loud.  In addition, she happens to be a pretty badass runner (even though she won’t admit it).  Really, she is probably one of the coolest people in the Garden State (I say this with zero personal experience, but I assume it’s true).  She’s fixin’ to be a teacher and a coach; somewhere in the future, a generation of angsty high-school runners is very lucky to have her.
  • Sofia (http://crunchygranolagal.wordpress.com) is the blogger whose eventual memoir I am most excited to read.  The girl has had a fascinating life and is a ridiculously talented writer.  Though she’s no longer running as much as she used to (due to an injury), her blog is packed with delicious NYC foodie stories – I live vicariously through her culinary adventures.  It is tragic that I only got to meet her once in person (okay twice, if you count the time that she popped into the store while I was working and waiting on the most ridiculous shoe customer ever.  Awkward blogger moment!  Love them!) but we’ll see each other again on marathon weekend! :)
  • Kelly (http://mealsformiles.wordpress.com) has seen me at my most heinous – 6 AM, surly, soaking wet, not entirely pleased to be running – and she didn’t recoil in horror at my lack of grooming or conversational skills, so that’s a huge credit to her. :)  She is one of those people who amazes me with how much she does – works full time, goes to school, blogs, cooks amazing meals, trains for marathons.  I can only hope to have my life together like that one day. :)

There are so many other fantastic NYC bloggers, I really could go on and on.  The running community in New York is really like nothing else I’ve ever experienced.  To say I will miss it is a massive understatement.

*tears*

Anyway.  Hope everyone is having a great Friday afternoon!  The hubs and I are planning a little stopover in Washington DC before continuing on to Raleigh on Sunday and moving in to our new apartment.  Wish us luck that everything goes smoothly!

On to the next adventure….

The last tempo

We are moving tomorrow.  Looking around our apartment, you might not know it.  We are, uh, perhaps a little behind on the packing front.  How we managed to cram so much stuff into these 300 little square feet is beyond me.

Emmy continues her exploration of the box piles.  I have a feeling she’ll be disappointed when the movers come tomorrow and dismantle her vertical playground.

Not afraid of heights, that cat!

Honestly, I am pretty exhausted right now, both physically and emotionally.  Tonight was the last of the goodbyes, to my teammates, on the heels of a tough tempo run that I didn’t feel great about.  I am surprised I held it together as well as I did.  Between the stress of packing and moving logistics, the running (35 miles this week so far, and I’ve already played my day-off card) and the farewells, I’ve been kind on edge all week and was pretty close to losing it tonight!

I cannot wait for this move to be over.

Anyway.  We pick up our truck bright and early tomorrow.  Let the fun begin!

Today’s EAT: I wish the last supper were more special.  But it was simple delivery.  Summer rolls, beef satay and chicken bun from Baoguette:

Definitely tasty!  I miss cooking, though!  Take-out containers are getting old.

Today’s DRINK: I scrounged the last bottle of wine from the back of the fridge.  A Rose Vinho Verde:

This Muralhas de Moncao blend is light and sweet!

Today’s RUN:  I made a little joke to a couple of teammates a couple of weeks ago.  We were discussing how workouts were getting longer after the summer season.  “You know,” I said.  “I’ll bet coach will bring that horrendous 2 X 4 mile tempo back just in time for me to leave.”  Chortling ensued.

Well, guess what landed on the docket this week.  Groan.

I know longer workouts are good for me, but I suck at them.  Big time.  8 miles of tempo is really not my idea of fun, and I always lag behind the group compared to the shorter track workouts.  But as we all know, running is hard sometimes.  So I resisted the urge to skip out and gave it my best shot.

The assignment: 2 X 4 miles.  First four at marathon pace.  Last four at half-marathon pace.  (My goal was 7:50-8:00 marathon pace, 7:30-7:40 half marathon pace.)

The results: I honestly thought this was going to look way worse when I was in the thick of it.

I guess the pace wasn’t actually that far off.  And I managed to negative-split it, which is a huge improvement over last week.

The first loop felt fine and I forced myself to hold back from the pack in front of me, which was running ~7:45.  The second loop?  Sucked.  Everyone else took off and I fell so far behind the group that I was running by myself.  I had to force myself to finish the workout.  Bleh.

I wish I’d executed better on my last (in-person) CPTC workout (for a while, anyway), but at the end of the day it’s 11 solid miles in the bag, so I’ll take it, right?

Today’s QUESTION: How many times have you moved in your adult life? This is number four for us.  Yeah…it’s kind of getting old.

Lucky and unlucky

Today was peppered with little moments where the stars aligned.  And also with some weird annoyances.

LUCKY: I took a little run this morning down to our kitty-sitter’s building so I could pick up our apartment keys from her doorman (*sniff*moving*sniff*).  She happened to be picking up a package from the desk at the same time, so we got to say goodbye in person!  What are the odds?

(And NYCers, if you’re ever looking for a great pet sitter, I highly recommend Becca at Katie’s Kitty.  She’s been wonderful and Emmy and Parker are going to miss her dearly!)

UNLUCKY: I stepped straight in a steaming pile of dog shit while running.  UGH.

LUCKY: In the shower, I realized that my shampoo bottle will run out just as I take my last shower in our apartment this week.

UNLUCKY: I ran today’s interval without with a horribly full bladder because the bathrooms at the track were closed.  WTF, NYC Parks.  It’s still August.  I know it’s chilly today, but there’s no need to shutter everything up already.

The pack-and-move-a-thon continues around here.  Helper Emmy has abandoned her box perch in favor of sleeping inside a hunk of Styrofoam packing material.

So bizarre, that one.

Today’s EAT:  Track workout recovery fuel: a cupcake and french fries.  Yup.

Some teammates pulled together a little farewell outing after practice today – so sweet. :)  Even though I’ve only known them for a few months, I love my CPTC buddies and will miss them so much. :(

After a quick pit-stop to at Butter Lane pick up a cupcake or two, we headed to Pommes Frites in the EV and crammed eight sweaty bodies into a booth that I’m sure was meant for four people.  And gorged on fresh, crisp Belgian fries and a glorious assortment of dipping sauces from pesto mayo to curried ketchup.  It was awesome.

Yeah.  Healthy balanced meals are kinda out the window this week.  C’est la vie!

Today’s DRINK: Having sipped red the last couple of nights, I was ready for a glass of chilled white wine tonight!

This Catalado SB is nice and refreshing, but a bit too apple-y for my taste!

Today’s RUN: My legs felt pretty good heading in to tonight’s track workout. I think taking yesterday as a rest day was a great plan, as was logging 5 easy miles in the morning to shake things out.  Doubles can be kind of a pain (hello….ever feel like all you do is run?) but done properly, they’re a great way to increase mileage!

Anyway…on to tonight’s track adventures.

The assignment: 4 X 1200M at 5K pace with 400M recovery.  (400M recovery!  Did you see that?  We never get 400, always 200.  Win!)

The results: Sweet negative splits!

1200M – 5:02 – 6:42 pace
1200M – 4:57 – 6:36 pace
1200M – 4:53 – 6:30 pace
1200M – 4:47 – 6:22 pace

This workout actually flew by, in spite of how nasty it looked on paper.  Honestly, 1200s on a track are not exactly a picnic.  They feel much closer to a mile than to a half-mile, in spite of being right in between.

But there was a cool breeze tonight and I felt good and finished strong.  In spite of really having to pee for most of the workout.  (Still kind of fuming about those bathrooms being locked!)

With my longish warm-up (3.5) + recovery and cool down (1.0), an 8.5 mile workout.  Added on to my AM run for a total of 13.5 + change today.

Today’s QUESTION: Have you stepped in dog poo lately?  Figuratively or literally? And I was wearing brand new running shoes, too.  So gross.

Famous feet

Gu to ring up.  Shoes to put away.  Toddlers to entertain while their mothers roam the Nike racks. It was just another day in running-retail-land.

Until a British couple walked in and headed to the shoe nest.  The guy poked around in a corner, studying some display sneakers; his attractive blond companion explained, in her pretty accent, that she needed a replacement pair of running shoes.  Alrighty, coming right up.  I headed down to the stock room.

“Holy crap,” one of my co-workers snatched my sleeve as I was on my way back up.  “Ricky Gervais is up in shoes!”

I poked my head around the corner.  So he was.  With his attractive blond wife.  Who needed replacement sneakers.

(source)

As it turned out, he wanted some new shoes too!  And that, my friends, is how I ended up spending half an hour of my afternoon with Ricky Gervais and his wife (producer Jane Fallon), explaining the concept of over-pronation and discussing the pros and cons of Superfeet inserts.  They were unbelievably nice and kept saying cute British things like “cheers!” and “brilliant!” I never did mention that I knew who he was.  But hey, Ricky – if you’re reading this now, I totally knew who you were!  And I love your work!

I rarely have brushes with celebrity.  And now I can say I have extensively touched the feet of the David Brent, Regional Manager, Slough branch, Wernham Hogg Paper Company.

You’re allowed to be envious. :)

(And the original British version of The Office kicked so much ass.)

Today’s EAT: Delivery from our favorite Thai place – one last time.  Pad Thai with crispy duck and spicy basil fried rice – dinner is served!

(Don’t mind the packing tape in the background.  That’s how I roll these days.  HAHA – get it?  Hey, where was that wit when I was hanging with Ricky earlier today?!)

A takeout lid doubles as a plate when all most of your kitchen is already packed:

At least there are no dishes to wash!

Today’s DRINK: Some wine drinking is happening while packing tonight, and the hubs has joined me on my crusade to empty the wine rack this week.  We’re still working on the bottle I opened last night, but hopefully there will be a couple of great wines to share over the next few days!

Today’s RUN: None – day off.  I’ve got my work cut out for me this week – aiming for 60 miles in the midst of this moving madness.  Not sure how I’m going to make it happen.

Today’s QUESTION: Have you ever met a celebrity? Share your favorite brush with fame!

The goodbye period

It’s officially begun.  This weekend was a string of last meals at beloved  restaurants and meetings over cocktails to bid farewell to our favorite people and places in NYC.

Sad. Face.

Also, we finally started packing.  Packing pretty much sucks.  Fortunately, we have a great helper.

Emmy has moved with us several times now and I have to say, she appears to love the process.  Boxes and bags and bubble wrap to explore?  She’s in heaven.

(Actually, I think she just likes looking down on us for once!)

This week ahead is jam-packed with work, running, packing and goodbyes.  If only I could scratch that last one out. :(

Today’s EAT: After a long day of wrestling with packing tape and bubble wrap, the hubs and I indulged in a lovely dinner at a neighborhood restaurant that we’d been itching to try all year!

And thanks to my dad for picking up the tab, via a gift certificate he phoned in for our birthdays a few weeks ago. :)  I love consumable gifts – and excellent choice, dad!  We had a great dinner of arugula and peach salad, steak, and lobster risotto.  Yummage!

Today’s DRINK: Naturally we had a bottle of wine with dinner, but I don’t remember what it was.  However, when we got home, I decided to break into one of the few bottles that remained on our wine rack when I packed it up this afternoon.

That wine rack was peppered with a few nice bottles when I dismantled it.  This is one of them – 2002 Greg Norman Estate Shiraz-Cab, a gift from my mom and step-dad that we were sort of saving.

But I’m not planning on moving wine bottles, so the good stuff will be consumed this week!

And yes, this bottle is excellent.  I’m sure it deserves a more than being sipped on the couch in yoga pants.  But you do what you’ve gotta do, right? :)

Today’s RUN: My legs were a bit sore today, but considering the week’s mileage (57!) and yesterday’s long run, I felt pretty good!  I headed out for 7 easy ones today – kept the pace around 9:30.  I got poured on, which was initially kind of annoying but then kind of fun.

Today’s QUESTION: Is there a restaurant you’ve been dying to try?  What’s stopping you?  There are sooooo many places I wish we had eaten here in NYC.  I wish we had an unlimited bank account!  (Or unlimited birthday gift certificates! :))

Laziness

Yep, this about sums it up.

It’s been a while since I had a lazy afternoon.  I’m a little wiped from this week’s mileage, including 18+ this morning.  So instead of addressing the long list of moving-related tasks that I made last week, I opted for getting a pedicure – my toes are now the color of lime sherbet!

….followed by laying in bed, eating potato chips, and drinking beer.

Being responsible and productive is overrated.

Today’s EAT: When I rolled in from my morning of long run fun, it was lunchtime.  The hubs suggested dim sum – saaaaalt, yessssss.  All sorts of dumplings, fritters, noodle-pouches and who knows what else were bathed in soy sauce and quickly consumed.  Dim sum is an awesome post-run treat!

When we got home, I was still craving salt, so I munched on a bowl of “exotic” Terra Chips (that I won from Danielle‘s giveaway last week!)

I had never seen the “exotic blend” before and they pretty much taste like normal Terra Chips to me, but whatevs!  I love Terra Chips.  And salt.

Today’s DRINK: There were two beers in the fridge.  Guess who drank them?  One for me, one for the hubs?

Nah.  Sharing is also overrated. :)

Today’s RUN: Eighteen long ones and then some.  Whew!

Although I was tired as hell when I dragged myself out of bed this morning, the run was actually fantastic.  I met up with a great group of girls from my team and we ran down from Central Park to the Brooklyn Bridge and back up again on Park Avenue, which was closed for NYC’s Summer Streets thingy.  It was great to have so much space to spread out!

My Garmin, however, had a bit of trouble in one little stretch of Midtown, both ways:

I’ve heard that Garmins can have trouble around very tall buildings, so I’m not sure if that was the problem, or what.  But I’m pretty sure I did not run a 7:03 mile at any point today.  The pacing is a bit suspect in some of the later miles, too.  Comparing with other gadgetry among the group (including a couple of non-GPS-based units), I’m guessing the distance is overestimated by about a quarter mile.  So I’m calling it 18.4 or so, with an average pace closer to 8:40.  Pretty much a perfect long run!

After adding some extra miles with Megan in the park, we reconvened with the others at Equinox on the UES to take advantage of their icy plunge pool.  Basically, it is a jacuzzi-shaped tub filled with 50-degree water.  And oh holy crap was it cold and painful.  At my longest stretch, I think I stayed in for 2-3 minutes.  I don’t remember the “ice tub” in my college’s training room ever being that hellacious!

Anyway.  Today really highlighted for me how much of a difference running with people can make. Good conversation really makes the miles fly by!  *sniff*  I’m gonna miss my teammates so much.

Today’s QUESTION: What’s on tap for your weekend?  Laziness or productiveness? And also, eating in bed: yay or nay? (I ask this as I brush away the potato chip crumbs from the comforter…)

Get your pace face on

First of all, thank you to everyone who left such wonderful, supportive comments on my post about moving to Raleigh yesterday.  I was tearing up again this morning, reading them.  Big virtual bloggy hugs to all of you.  In a non-creepy way, of course.

This afternoon, though, it was time to dry the tears and steel myself for the first long tempo run I’ve done in a while: 7 miles total, with the first half at goal marathon pace and the rest at half-marathon pace.  Doesn’t that sound fun?  Anyone?  Bueller?

Well, it wasn’t fun.  If you want the details, see below.  But can we chat for a minute about this whole concept of goal marathon pace?  I feel like it’s come up a lot lately in my running circles!

Admittedly, GMP is kind of a new concept for me.  In all of my previous marathons, I haven’t really trained with a certain pace in mind.  Marathon pace was whatever pace I felt up for that day.  Of course I wanted to finish well, but I never incorporated pace-oriented work into my training.

But a marathon is a race.  And so there is a race pace.  And getting that pace through your thick skull is an important part of training.  Or so I am told.

This training cycle I am doing several GMP workouts – like tonight – as well as structuring other key runs around the concept.  Long runs, for instance, should be 60 seconds per mile slower than GMP.  At least.  Ditto recovery runs.

Or so I am told.

It can be challenging to enforce such pace parameters.  I think naturally, many people – including me! – get stuck on the notion that if I want to run a marathon at X pace, I should run my 20-miler at X pace.  But that’s a recipe for disaster.  Or, at a minimum, dead legs and runs that take several days to recover from.  (I learned this one the hard way by pushing my 20-miler a bit too hard last weekend, I think.)

Marathon training means increased mileage.  Something’s gotta give.  I’m coming around to the fact that my average pace might slow down a bit as I work my way from 30 and 40 mile weeks to 50 and 60 mile weeks.  And even with all of those miles, every run has a purpose: the GMP tempo at 7:45 pace and the recovery run at 9:15 pace are both important.  And the long run should be just that – long.  Not fast.  Just long.

I’d love for others to weigh in on this!  How do you approach marathon training?  Do you train with a GMP in mind?  As I said earlier, this is all sort of new to me.  In the past, I’ve always been of the “eh, throw in a long run or two in and that’s good enough” mindset.  But I don’t think I’ve lived up to my potential in my past marathons, either.

Whew, this turned in to a novel.  A nerdy running novel.  Sorry!

Moving on.

Today’s EAT: The hubs had dinner plans of his own tonight, so I threw together a solo snacky dinner when I got home from practice:

TJ’s Everything Pretzel Slims, hummus, cheese and a peach.  Snackalicious!  Seriously, those TJ’s pretzel thingys rock my face off.  Have you tried them?  They are perfect for dipping in hummus or eating with cheese!

I also crunched on a yummy ear of corn with butter and lots of salt.  I crave salt big time after a hard workout!

(Thanks, Megan, for sharing your CSA goodies.  The corn was delish.)

Today’s DRINK: I rehydrated with a glass of this Simonsig Cab:

I’m sure my snacky dinner didn’t really do it justice, as sipping this wine made me think of a filet or a rack of lamb!  But it was lovely to sip, regardless.

Today’s RUN: So, that whole pacing thing.  I kinda blew it tonight.

The assignment: 7 mile tempo run.  From 72nd on the West side, up to and across the 102 street transverse, then back down the East side to 72nd (3.7 miles) at GMP.  Then, two times around the lower loop (3.4 miles) at half-marathon pace.

The results: Well, if the assignment had been to go out too fast and then blow up at the end, I would have gotten an A+.

(BTW, a few people have asked how I get Garmin screens into my posts.  I use Jing, which is a free screen capture software, then simply crop the resulting image and insert it like any other pic!  In this case I also added the red stuff in Paint.  High tech stuff!)

Splits 2 through 5 were the supposed GMP.  7:37?  7:29?  Yeahhhhh.  Probably not.  I should be shooting for 7:45 to 8:00 here.

The thing was, it felt good.  I was having a lovely chat with some teammates and it didn’t feel hard and even as I glanced down at my wrist and noted that I was going too fast, I kept going with it.  Somewhere in the back of my mind, I suspected that this would mean pain and suffering at the end of the workout.  I was right.

See: splits 7 and 8.  Oy.  My legs were stiff as hell and try as I might to get a bit of turnover going, it just felt impossible.  I do not want to feel like that when I’m 5 miles into my marathon.  I do not.

From that perspective, this workout was a good lesson.  Don’t go out too fast.  Just don’t.  Of course it feels fine at the time.  It will haunt you in the end.

May that lesson stick with me in the start corral in Chicago.

Today’s QUESTION: What’s your approach to pacing when you’re training for a long race? Obviously, I’m a-workin’ on it.  I think I know what I need to do – now it’s just a matter of doing it!

So, um. Ahem.

For about a week, I’ve been dreading writing this post.  Because I really hate big throat-clearing announcements.  And I also hate goodbyes.

But it’s time to face reality.  Sigh.  In a couple of weeks, the hubs and I will say farewell to NYC and drag a U-Haul full of stuff down to Raleigh, NC.

Why the move?  The short answer is that the hubs’ job here in NYC was a one-year deal and it ends this month.  And he wants to pursue a very cool entrepreneurial opportunity that requires him to be down there, at least for a little while.

Unfortunately I can’t make a solid financial argument for us to stay in NYC based on my incredibly lucrative career as a lazy freelancer and part-time retail worker.  (Believe me, I tried.  There was lots of fuzzy math involved.  Hubs saw right through it, the smarty pants.)

Anyway.  As I’m sure you’ve gathered, I’m sort of having a hard time accepting all of this.  Okay, a really hard time.  Although I never envisioned New York as a permanent residence, I kind of had my heart set on staying a little longer.  We’ve barely been here a year.

I love it here.  I love my work, even though I earn a fraction of what I did in my consulting days.  I love my neighborhood.  I love my friends, both old and new.  I love running in Central Park and track workouts with my team and fro-yo from Bloomingdales.  I love not driving and having things delivered.

I am pretty darn happy here.  And change is hard when you’re happy.

I’m sure North Carolina is a wonderful place.  Really.  I know I’ll probably adjust just fine and be happy as a clam there, eventually.  But it doesn’t take the sting out of making a change that I don’t particularly want to make.  This is the fourth major move that the hubs and I have made in the last few years.  I feel like I just got settled here and now it’s time to uproot.  Again.

This NYC year has been so wonderful, and I’m glad that I’ve been able to share my adventures with you guys. I feel like being a New Yorker has been a part of my blogdentity (made up word alert) and truthfully it’s a little scary to lose that.  (Scary and sad.  The tears started flowing two paragraphs ago, and my beer is getting unfortunately salty.)

I hope that you’ll all come along with me for the next chapter. I promise lots of fun stories about BBQ and humidity and…other things that happen in the South, I guess.  It’s the one part of the country I’ve never lived, so this is all gonna be brand new to me!

Thanks for attending my pity party.  I’ll be back tomorrow with some more upbeat eating, drinking and/or running content for your reading pleasure!

Nerdy blog moment

I had a moment tonight.

I was running from track practice to the bar (cool down) while munching on a Larabar.  Eating and running while preparing to drink.  Yep, these three activities really are generally how I spend my time.  And I love it.

Compounding the bloggy nerdiness:  I was on my way to meet up with two of my favorite bloggers at the bar. :)

People sometimes ask why I spend so much time on this blog.  This is why.  I love having an outlet where I can talk about all of the things that I’m passionate about.  And make friends with so many cool people that I would have never otherwise connected with.

(And who don’t mind that I show up at the bar covered in sweat from my workout.)

Today’s EAT: The hubs ordered Thai food tonight and I tucked into a plate when I got home:

Spicy basil fried rice and a little side of crispy duck. Crispy duck is possibly the most delicious thing ever, although I try not to eat it too often because it’s basically fried fat.  Still…so delicious.

Today’s DRINK: After a couple of classes of wine at the bar, I decided I could splurge and have just one more beer to sip at home tonight:

Anchor Summer Beer, which surprisingly I don’t think I’ve ever had!  It’s kinda lemony, but growing on me.  On a hot day with some good seafood, it would be a nice pairing!

Today’s RUN: Now that “short race season” is over, phrases like “pace recognition workout” and “grind-it-out effort” have re-entered coach’s vocabulary.  That means longer workouts.  Oh, hooray.

Tonight’s track workout really wasn’t much longer, distance-wise, than most of the track workouts we’ve done this year, but somehow it felt like looking at a ton of bricks when I first saw it.

The assignment: 5 X 1000M at 5K pace with 200M recovery.  True 5K pace was stressed: for me, that would mean an honest 6:30 to 6:40 pace, none of this “well, let’s run 6-flat just because it’s the track and I can.”

The results:  Hey, guess who kept the pace spot on?  Actually, this really felt like a “cruise” workout.  The intervals were relatively long, and I fought more against boredom than physical fatigue.  I think that was part of the point of the workout.

1000M – 4:08 – 6:36 pace
1000M – 4:10 – 6:40 pace
1000M – 4:07 – 6:35 pace
1000M – 4:07 – 6:35 pace
1000M – 4:11 – 6:41 pace

That last one was a little meh, but honestly I think I just overcompensated a little.  I kept telling myself, going into the last repeat, that I didn’t need a sprint finish, that 80-second quarters weren’t the point, that I shouldn’t leave it all out on the track tonight.  Why?  Because Thursday night we have a 7-mile tempo that will almost certainly be a shit-show, and I didn’t want to fry my legs in advance of it.

Overall, I felt good about this workout.  (Total with warm-up, cool-down, etc = ~7.5 miles.)  My legs are still reeling a little from Friday’s long run and a 53-mile week last week, but the point tonight was to dial in a set pace and cruise, and I was able to do that.  I’ll take it.

Today’s QUESTION: Have you ever met up with other bloggers or tweeps or other online friends? I actually have a lot of wonderful friends that I’ve met online over the years. :)  I used to be sort of shy about admitting that, but nowadays I embrace it!  Yep, I’ll let my Nerd Flag fly high and proud!