Friday, August 31, 2012

Race Recap: NYRR Back to Football Run

News flash: It's football season!

Okay, fine. It's still preseason until Wednesday, but it's basically football season.  

And for the first time, NYRR teamed up with the NFL for the Back to Football Run in Central Park.  The race started at 7:30pm, which was a little late for my liking...but not too bad for a 4 mile race.

I was pretty excited to combine my love for running with my love for football & the NY Giants!  And I'm always on board to plan an awesome race "outfit".  Hence:

I have to say the best part of this super fun race was getting to meet some fabulous blog/twitter friends!  I've been following Kristin's blog for awhile now, but for some reason or another we've never been able to meet!  Last night the stars aligned and it happened.  Clearly, we hit it off right away...

Hope it's okay I'm borrowing this pic, Kristin! :)
Despite her poor taste in football teams, she's awesome and I'm so glad she shares my enthusiasm for serious race costumes and sparkles.  Oh, and she brought cookies to fuel with. Amazing.

So...the race.  My quads were feeling tight and I was kind of just running for the fun of this race, so I didn't have a goal pace or finish time in mind.  Kristin was on the same page, so we just ran, talked and eavesdropped on a certain couple arguing/inspiring each other behind us.  

The course was one loop starting and ending on the 72nd street transverse, which includes a few nice rolling hills.  These are probably highlighted below in orange/red where I was slowing down.  There were some awesome spectators/volunteers cheering on all the different NFL teams represented.  As always, NYRR had plenty of water/Gatorade available and one thing I haven't seen before at a finish line: PLUMS! Yum!

My official race time was 40:16 (10:04 pace).  Sounds good to me...can't ask for more on a fun run with great people who were all celebrating the start of football season!

Other fabulous ladies I met at the NYRR Back to Football Run? Stephanie and Beth! If you don't already follow these girls, get on it.  I really do love how running brings together so many unique and amazing people.  

Overall, the NYRR Back to Football Run made for a great Thursday night!  

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Race Recap: The Color Run NYC

In case you haven't heard (or aren't yet sick of hearing...) this past weekend was The Color Run NYC.  The Color Run is labeled the "Happiest 5K on the Planet", where at each "K" runners get splattered with a different color powder (corn starch).  

Since this fun run is super popular, TWO race days were offered...which both sold out within 48 hours of registration opening.  Only two of my planned "team" made the cut-off and we opted for the Sunday race.  

So...on Sunday, my alarm clock went off at 5:30am.  I woke up to this:

Wake up, Mom! It's time for The Color Run!
We got on the road at 6:15am, knowing we'd have to deal with race day packet pick-up and anticipating traffic!  The Color Run continued to warn about the ridiculously long lines we'd be facing if we picked up our numbers the morning of the race.  Ya know, because there were 10,000 runners each day. Well, I guess we were a little overly zealous because parking was a cinch and packet pick-up took less than 5 minutes.  Way to over exaggerate, Color Run.  

We had over an hour to wait for the start, so we had some free time to pose for fun free pics! The Chevy Spark tent had a fun photo op with cute props! You probably can't see it, but my sign said "Ummm we like color...Ummm we like running."  
So fresh and so clean, clean.
And that killed a solid 5 minutes.  So we headed to the start around 7:45 and ended up in the 2nd corral.  Groups took off every 5 minutes, which was an effort to keep congestion down.  Because this is not a timed race and most "Color Runners" are just doing this for fun, the corrals were not divided by pace and it was a mix of runners, joggers and walkers.  I was shocked that despite the thousands of people, congestion really wasn't a problem.

At about 8:15, Team CT took off and ran-walked our way through all 4 color stations: yellow, red, blue, and pink! 

Clockwise from top left: yellow, red, blue, pink!

The course was an out and back with a water station at the turn-around.  There was a DJ at the start and right before the half-way point which added to the fun of the race.  The volunteers at each color station had squeeze bottles to squirt us with the designated color.  I do have to say that we definitely had to slow down and walk directly by a person to get color on us.  We each also had a packet of color with us that was meant to be used at the post-race "Color Festival".  A few people even preemptively opened these packets to add extra or different colors to each other during the race!  This was probably a good idea because when we were finished with those 4 color stations, we just looked kind of blah.  I kept seeing orange, magenta and bright purple colors, which looked the most fun...yet were missing from the race stations! 

So after our sweaty 3.1 fun was done, here's how we looked:

The End Result.
We grabbed our post-race fuel...more water, KIND bars (my fave!), Yasso frozen Greek yogurt (no relation to Bart) and Fuze (not a fan).
Mmm Greek Fro-Yo!
Finally, we headed to the post-race color fest!  Essentially, this was a mosh-pit in front of the DJ stage and every few minutes finishers toss their color packets into the air and paint each other.
Pretty colors!
And we took some more fun pics of course!

Hooray for Color Run!

Apparently there were "blowers" to help runners get rid of excess color before heading home.  We didn't see these, but no worries!  I'm always prepared and had read up on tips in advance.  I brought blankets and towels to protect the car, baby wipes to clean ourselves up, a change of clothes and bags to wrap up our rainbow colored gear.  

[Side note: to any runners thinking about doing a Color Run:  You can't go into this being competitive or thinking it will be like a normal 5K.  It's advertised as a fun race to do with fun people, and that's exactly what it is.  It's not timed.  And more importantly, most people don't have any sense of running "etiquette".]

So am I going to do this race again?  Probably not.  I definitely had a blast being silly with my "team" (shout outs to Stephy & CT!) and I'm all about events that gets people active while having fun.  But I think I got my fill of color fun for quite some time!

Next up: NYRR Back to Football Run on Thursday!

Have you done a Color Run? Thinking about doing one?  Running the Back to Football 4-miler? Tell me about it!

Thursday, August 23, 2012

I'm Thankful For Thursdays.

Oh, I love you! You signify the almost end to the work week and my rest day and the day I get to have a few drinks with friends! :)

I'm definitely thankful for Thursdays. I'm also thankful for...

...good things happening to good people.  I love when people in my life are happy! Some are having babies, some getting jobs...and it's all awesome!  

...for runs with my dad. DUH.

...that The Color Run is Sunday! I'm pretty psyched to see what the "Happiest 5K on the Planet" is all about! Let's go Team CT!

...for my new early morning running routine.  
Ahh...The sunrise over Con Edison.  Okay, so it's no sandy beach or mountain view...but I'll take it! I'm really liking that my runs are done and over with before most people start their days.  I feel super accomplished.

...for this cool gift from cuz:
It's lip balm.  By ClifBar. I know..I don't even really understand it, but I'm loving it.'s late! You go! What are you thankful for?! 

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Home Is Where the Heart Is

I've had a very busy weekend! Yesterday I headed upstate to my parent's house so I could take Rocky to the vet. Shocker...he has something NEW wrong with him! Although I hate when he has bully issues and I certainly hate spending so much dang $ on these issues, I have to admit I loved the excuse to go home.

Rocky and Tow Mater. BFF.
I do get to see my family fairly often because they're just a few short hours drive away.  It's been a while since I've seen everyone so I was sure to make the rounds during my short trip home.  Rocky and I visited with my aunt, I went out to dinner with my parents and I even spent some time with my grandparents and their house full of animals!

Oh, and I hung out with this one-eyed guy too!

Hi Wile. E.
As I've said many times before, one of my favorite things to do is go running with my dad.  So of course I did that too!  When I woke up (a little late) this morning, the weather was absolutely perfect.  I mean sunny and mid 50-60 degrees! Amazing.  Dad probably wanted to do a longer run, but I told him my training called for somewhere between 7-9 miles.  

My parents live less than a mile from the Dutchess Rail Trail, a running/walking/biking trail that covers about 12 miles through the middle of Dutchess County.  It's pretty much flat and since you can access it from several entrances, it's great for short runs away from dangerous cars or can be added as part of a longer distance.  

So we started out on the Rail Trail and covered 3ish miles heading over to Vassar College campus.  Although Dad promised there wouldn't be hills on this run, Vassar has does a few inclines.  It wasn't so bad.  And it's a really pretty campus that was super quiet because school is obviously not back in session yet.  In hindsight, I should've snapped a few pictures of the pretty views and buildings throughout campus.

Dad also showed me a "hidden gem" in Vassar Farm, which is huge and I never even knew it existed from driving by on the road.  
Farms? Yeah, we don't have those in Queens.
After a quick visit to this big old farm (which of course has now intrigued me and has me looking into the Poughkeepsie Farm Project), we doubled back and headed back home via the Rail Trail.

Not quite a NYC intersection.

So we did a nice 8.5 miles, keeping a 9:50ish pace.  Good stuff. 

Overall, my whirlwind weekend home was awesome. Doesn't get much better than running with Dad, visiting the rest of the fam, and doing some laundry for free! :)

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Dear Thankful Thursday, Get Rid of My Headache!

And we meet again, Thursday.  I've had a killer migraine all day, for which I am NOT thankful.  I was struggling to get any work done and could not get rid of Mr. Migraine.  I even choked down a cup of coffee! Ack! Since nothing else is working to clear my head, maybe making a nice list of things that make me happy will work! Let's do it.

Today, I'm thankful...

...for a nice cool run this morning.  When I stepped outside, it was 67 degrees and breezy...SUCH a nice change from the disgusting humidity we've been having! It got me pumped up for fall running! 

...that my new baby Klean Kanteen arrived today! :)

I haven't been the best at staying hydrated at my new job, so I needed a mini size water bottle to keep in my lab coat!  And being the super environmentally friendly person that I am, Klean Kanteen was the way to go. I love their bottles and I'm psyched to keep hydrated with this little pink guy!

...for a fabulous beach day with some cool people last Sunday.  Of course we didn't take any pictures but it was beautiful and we had a grand ole time!

...for "our" new SodaStream! Roomie was basically dying for this awesome contraption, so it was the perfect birthday gift for her! It's a fantastic way to make our club soda without buying and wasting plastic bottles! Gosh, we are so green! :)

...that NYC has so many runner-friendly routes/backdrops to explore! 

I took this baby midway over the Queensboro Bridge..ya know, running into Manhattan.  To learn more about this route and many others, check out the NYC Running Routes posts from fellow blogger, Kristin!

So this headache is still lurking around, but Thankful Thursday definitely helped pep me back up.  Tell me, what are you feeling thankful for?

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Thankful Thursday: My *New* Old Friends

Hey Hey! How is it Thursday already?! This week is flying by, which I guess is okay by me! So let's get down to it and be thankful!

Today I'm thankful...

...for my new old-people friends.  Some are all smiles, some are absolutely miserable and I'm loving each and every one of them.

...that today was payday! I got my first official paycheck at my new job! Time to pay bills! :)

...for the amazing athletes competing in London.  The Olympics have been mind-blowing and inspiring and I'm a little sad that they're almost over.

...for Pepperjack cheese. Cheese with peppers in it? Genius.

That's all I got today!

I know today's post was short but I'm beat...and starting to be thankful for my relaxing Thursday night in watching TV and snuggling with the Rock.

Okay, now YOU go. What are you feelin good about this week?!

Monday, August 6, 2012

Monday Motivation

I don't know about you, but I've been totally wrapped up in the Olympics this past week.  It's incredibly inspiring to watch these athletes who have worked SO hard finally get to compete and make their dreams come true.  I can't get enough of the running, swimming and gymnastics events in particular.  They're definitely motivating me to get off my butt and get my workouts in! 

I do agree with everyone that NBC is cutting the coverage with WAY too many commercials, which can get really frustrating because I might miss something awesome! However, some of these commercials are amazing and motivating in and of themselves.  The VISA commercials narrated by Morgan Freeman literally give me chills.  And this one from Nike Running:

That kid is no Olympic athlete...but he is out there moving.  I love it.  So when you find yourself lacking motivation...turn on the Olympics! Or check out some of these commercials. And then get your butt in gear!

Tell me: what motivates you? Which Olympic events are you loving?! 

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Let's Be Thankful (Thursday)

Well, hello there.  How was your week? Super? Mine too, thanks for asking.  Let me tell you all of the fabulous things I'm feeling happy & thankful for!

I'm feeling thankful...

...that I am officially employed as a dietitian! :) 

...for rainy runs.  When I left my apartment at 6am Wednesday morning for my run, it was so disgustingly humid outside.  I saw some dark clouds over the Manhattan skyline and crossed my fingers that they'd come my way.  Aaaaaaand 3 miles later, they found their way over to me and opened right up!  I know some people hate running in the rain, but I love it.  Especially when it's hot out.

...for the man in our apartment complex who refers to me as "princess".  Don't worry, it's in a genuine, totally not creepy way.  I mean I'm not really a princess, but he brightens my day everyday I see him!

...that I made these Margarita Cupcakes for the roommates birthday.  They're definitely among the best cupcakes I've ever made. YUM.

...for the Thursday night line-up.  Summer isn't the best time for TV, but Thursdays are currently my favorite TV night with shows like Big Brother, Project Runway and The Real L Word.  

On that note, I'm off to cook up some dinner and settle into the couch for TV night!

Tell me what you're thankful for this week! Please?!