Monday, October 28, 2013

frog xvi - a paris microbrewery

after a day of sightseeing, i went to frog xvi with my friend tom to try a few locally brewed beers.  frogpubs brews 6 different beer styles, all of which we had a chance to sample.  we opted for pints of the "dark de triomphe" :D

it seemed a bit odd to drink beer with all the fantastic wine to be had in paris - but the beer was good, and there'll be a few opportunities to have some wine during the next couple of days.

some paris sights - 2013

took in a few of the major sights today - the arch de triomphe, eiffel tower, champs des elysees, a walk along the seine... and even got wet during the midday rain showers :D

no matter how often i've seen some of these sights, they never get old! one of the highlights was retracing the various running routes i've taken on my earlier trips to paris.  so far, on this trip, my running has been limited to the hotel treadmill.  but i still have a couple of more days to get back out on the roads :D

the rest of my photos are posted on facebook.

Saturday, October 26, 2013

greetings from paris - 2013 :D

greetings from paris!  it's been a few years since i've been able to walk the streets of paris.  two years ago i went to lille, and the closest i got to paris was charles de gaule airport. it was raining when the plane landed, but within the hour it stopped and the sun came out for a while.  but mostly, the day was windy with overcast skies.  the only sightseeing i managed to get in was a walk over to the arc de triumph and down the champ de elysees.

i'll be here through wednesday, and then fly home thursday morning.  in addition to a little mores sightseeing, i'd like to get a few running miles in on the streets (as opposed to the hotel treadmill).  stay tuned :D

2013 cht ghost & goblin 5k: race photos & results

it was cold - and windy - for the cht ghost & goblin 5k this morning!  when i up it was 30 degrees outside,  by the time the race started, on sherwood island in westport, the temperature had climbed into the 40's, but the wind still hadn't died down.  i wore two long-sleeved shirts, a wool hat, and gloves!  a little overdressed when all was said and done - yet not by much :D

as for the race itself, i ran a 21:38, 6:58 pace (unofficial, since the results haven't been posted).  i was more than happy with that because i haven't done very much speedwork during the month and a half.  the race was notable because 2 guys cut the course in the last quarter mile.  i haven't seen anything like that in years.  when we finished i called them out on it.  all they had was a lame "we were told to go that way" which was b/s - but what else could they say under the circumstance?!

here are the race results.

the rest of my photos are up on facebook.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

greetings from michigan... versus indiana!

this is my 4th trip to michigan this year!  pat and i drove up on friday to visit katie during parents & family weekend here at the university of michigan. one of the highlights was this afternoon's football game - i was my first big 10 college football game (and 1st time i've ever been in such a huge stadium).  it was a fantastic experience - which even grey skies and occasional rain couldn't dampen.  the 63-46 michigan win may have also contributed to that mood!

tomorrow we drive back home (and won't see katie again until thanksgiving).  on a related note, now that the giants season has been relegated to the scrapheap of history - even if they manage a win on monday night, they'll sport a fantastic 1-6 record - the wolverines have picked up the slack!  go blue!!

Sunday, October 13, 2013

2013 nyrr staten island half marathon: race photos and results

one of the highlights of the nyrr staten island half was the ferry ride to and from the race!  it was certainly a change of pace from the typical drive or train to the start.  as for the race itself, the half was the 5th and final entry in the 2013 five boro challenge.  it's been 8 years(!) since i last completed all 5 of the grand prix races!  the logistics of getting to the various races locations is almost as difficult as actually running them!
as for half, i hit my target pace of 8:00 minute miles (just barely, w/a 7:59 pace).  my performance wasn't what i had planned on, but a chest cold that nagged me all week (on the heels of last sunday mornings run in the ran... and another wet run on thursday).  given how i felt on friday, when i actually skipped work, i was glad to cross the finish.
even so, the 1:44:28 was my fastest half of the year :D
i'll write up a short race report in the next day or two.
here are the race results from nyrr.


the rest of my photos are posted on facebook.

Friday, October 11, 2013

packet pick-up for nyrr staten island half marathon

yesterday afternoon i picked up my bib and shirt for the staten island half.  and, what seems to have become a permanent part of the process, also picked up the clear plastic bag for baggage check.  staten island is the 5th and final installment of the 5 borough race series.  it's also the first time since 2005 that i've managed to do all 5 in one year :D

logistically, staten island is simultaneously easy and tough to reach.  the start is just steps from the ferry (easy) - but getting to the ferry on a weekend, via metronorth, is no picnic because of the early start and infrequent trains (including the trip downtown from grand central)... the proverbial "hard" part.  after that sort of commute, any race short of a marathon will be easier than the travel to it took to line up for it!

be that as it may, i'm looking forward to this one.  i haven't done a race on staten island in a while (maybe the 5k benefit to raise funds to keep camp pouch open for boy scouting?).  aside from the actual race, riding the staten island ferry is always fun!

as always, i you're at this one - say hello!

Friday, October 4, 2013

2013 nyrr bronx 10 miler: race report

this race report is on the edge of belated, but i finally had a chance to finish it up this morning.  one memorable thing about this edition of the bronx 10 miler is what it isn't - namely the 2012 race!  last year i ran the race less than 48 hours after my house had been struck by lightening.  needless to say, at that point racing, much less running, wasn't foremost on my mind.  in fact, don and emmy picked me up for the drive down to the bronx from white plains - where my family and I had taken up short term residence at a hotel!

so when don and emmy met me at my house for the drive in this time around, it was already a 100% better outcome than the previous year :D  in addition, this time around i wasn't struggling with the foot pain associated with the chronic compartment syndrome.  given those two big positives, i'd have no problem running the 10 miles faster than my 1:21:52 finish in 2012.  my 1:20 time goal may have even been too soft given the 1:18:20 finish at the westport 10 miler at the end of august.  given that, my goal was to run a sub-7:50 pace and beat my westport time.

my first mile was a solid 7:28 - but with crowded start, i spent most of it trying to get into a groove and avoid other runners.  by way of comparison, my first mile at westport was a gravity assisted 7:04 on the downhill.  that race would ultimately see the heat and humidity take it's toll on the second half of the race.  while i would run essentially a similar split for the first 5 miles of both races, the second 5 miles unfolded very differently!  in fact, after a 7:15 second mile and a 7:29 mile 3, my 22:13 split equaled my westport 22:12 at the 3 mile mark.

by mile 5, when we were at cuny's lehman college my 37:38 split was just 14 seconds behind my 37:24 at westport.  and that's where the similarities ended.  instead of marked slowdown in the next couple of miles (8:34 & 8:31) in westport (a combination of the hills and humidity), i was able to maintain an even pace.  my slowest miles of the race were a 7:49 mile 5 and a 7:47 in mile 6.  the weather and hills weren't a issue in the bronx.

at 7 miles, with a 53:06 split, i was confident that if i kept it together for the last 3 miles, i'd come in under 1:20 and ahead of my westport finish. but, just when i imagined i was going faster - i ran a 7:40 8th mile.  that was not only not faster than mile 7 (7:39), but a second slower!  i don't know what had happened to my ability to perceive pace - but i suddenly had a vision of cher slapping nick cage in "moonstruck" and shouting "snap out of it!"

i don't know if it was cher, or some handy reserves that i was able to tap into, but i managed a pair of 7:20's (7:21 & 7:22) for the final two miles.  my watch read 1:15:30 - and i was pleasantly surprised to learn that my official chip time was 1:15:27 (both equal a 7:33 pace).  i was very happy with that finish!  but, not leaving well enough alone, i soon began to wonder how i managed to "lose" 30 seconds over miles 5-8 and let a sub 1:15 finish slip away :O

another reason i was happy with my finish was that wrapped up my 9+1 requirement.  now i have guaranteed entry for the 2014 nyc marathon!  in fact, i'll actually finish out the year with at least 2 more scored races (the staten island half this month and the marathon next month).  all in all, i had a  a great time at this edition of the bronx 10 miler.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

october 2013 race schedule

my october race calendar has only two races on it - with a possibility of three if i manage to run one this weekend.  october is another travel month for me, with a mid-month trip back to ann arbor for parents day at the university of michigan and then a business trip to paris at the end of the month.  while i'm looking forward to both trips, i'll miss the race weekends.

right now the only races i have planned are the nyrr staten island half marathon on 10/13 and the ghosts & goblins 5k in westport on 10/26 (and i'll head down to jfk that night to catch my flight to paris).  i'll miss my favorite pair of halloween 5k's the very next day (the wilton halloween hustle and the pumpkin chase that afternoon).

i had wanted to do the ted corbitt 24 hour run in queens this weekend, but running an ultra just doesn't fit into my training plans at this point.  while i want to run long this weekend, i don't want to run that long ;O

here's how it looks as of now:

10/13 - nyrr staten island half marathon
10/26 - ghosts & goblins 5k

as always, if you at either one - say hello!