- “So you’re running the 5K this weekend.”
- “Yep. My first one.”
- “Watch your step at the finish.”
- “What? Why? Oh you mean because it might rain on Sunday…”
- “NO. The puke. The finish line can get kind of slippery with all that vomit all over it!”
Saturday, February 28, 2009
Wednesday, February 25, 2009
But if you are, congratulations! You’ve just been invited to a private screening of “Beyond The Epic Run” courtesy of me, The Running Laminator. You’re welcome. You see, a short while ago, I was contacted by a member of their marketing team inviting me out for this screening. When I replied that I would be available that night, they asked if I wanted to bring my readership along. Why of course certainly, I replied. Where kind of blogger would I be if it weren’t for my loyal readers, especially those that live here in the city. (No offense to those loyal friends of mine that live beyond the city borders…if I could bring you all here, you know I would.)
Anyway, this feature film documenting the journey of a Swiss couple who took 5 years to travel on an epic journey across Europe, Africa, Middle East, Africa, and the United States, will be shown on Monday March 2nd at 7:30pm at the Anthology Film Archives at 32 2nd Avenue In New York City. If you would like to come and see this awesome and inspiring reality film with me and other likeminded NYC bloggers, please respond in the comments or drop me a line with your name and contact info at firstname.lastname@example.org. I’ll be sure to add your name to the guest list. (As if the movie itself wasn’t exciting enough, I hear we’ll be able to meet the film’s producer after the screening for a Q&A session as well! How awesome!)
Oh yeah, and did I forget to mention that this event is FREE!
Here’s a bit more about the film from the marketing department:
“Beyond the Epic Run” is a feature length documentary reality film about a Swiss couple who live their dream to run around the world. Together, Serge and Nicole Roetheli leave on an epic adventure that leads them out of Europe, through Africa, the Middle East, Asia and the United States, testing their boundaries, strengthening their minds and challenging their bodies. Running the equivalent of a marathon every other day, Serge the endurance sports runner runs nearly 25,400 miles in five years while wife, Nicole, using their personal camera as she rides her Yamaha motorcycle, captures the footage used in this film. Excerpts from her personal diary reveal experiences and accomplishments throughout their journey together.
Serge ran more than 25,000 miles over five years with Nicole behind him. They traveled through 37 counties on six continents. While they were running through Africa, they both caught Malaria and almost died, but Serge and Nicole kept on tuckin’. It’s an amazing story of an athlete --and a loving wife’s--physical and mental strength. They risked everything for this experience. Very inspiring for anyone trying to overcome any challenge!
Here’s the trailer for the film:
And an interview with Dean Karnazes about the film.
For additional information about the film, please visit www.beyondtheepicrunblog.com
If you can come out to participate in this incredible and exclusive event, please do. It promises to a fun-filled and inspiring night for all runners and bloggers! Just let me know so I can let them know. Thanks, and I hope to meet all of you on Monday night.
Week #9 (2/16-2/22)
What I Planned:
What I Ran:
How I Ran:
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
Sunday, February 22, 2009
Wednesday, February 18, 2009
Monday, February 16, 2009
Week #8 (2/9-2/15)
What I Planned:
What I Ran:
How I Ran:
Friday, February 13, 2009
Thursday, February 12, 2009
2. I crossed the finish line in 32:54 and puked a few seconds later. It was first and last time I’ve ever crossed the puke threshold in a race.
3. I’ve yet to run a race without a bandana – I believe it’s what gives me my mojo.
4. I ran my first marathon – the 2005 New York City Marathon – in 3:28:26...after crawling 4 blocks on Fifth Avenue.
5. I am kind of a late bloomer – I never ran in high school, college, or even in medical school.
6. I always run with music, but have never raced with it.
7. In every race I run, I try and remember something unique about every single mile. That way, I make each race more memorable and personal.
8. I started running only because my friend M was, and I so wanted to beat him in one-on-one basketball.
9. My favorite race distance is the half-marathon...which is why the race I’m most proud of is last year’s Staten Island Half, which I finished in 1:25:44.
10. Yet I run a few marathons a year because it brings me closer to people who are far away, especially my sister who I share a conversation with every time at Mile 23.
11. I run because it keeps me sane, healthy, and at peace with myself
12. I keep a running blog because one day I know I will have to give this sport up and I want to remember what it once felt like to run well.
13. Even though I don’t know how to swim…yet, I’m pretty sure I’ll participate in a triathlon before I’ll run an ultramarathon.
14. I own a collection of bandanas in 56 distinct colors…and am always looking for more!
15. My best marathon finish so far is the 2008 version of the New York City Marathon – 3:02:20. That was also the race where I had the most friends/fans in attendance. Coincidence? I think not.
16. I strive to be a better coach than I am a runner, and a better doctor than I am a coach. But I really think I can be equally good in all three.
17. My goal this year is run a sub 3 hour marathon, because me and my brother once thought that 2:59 was like Kenyan speed!
18. My biggest fear is being caught in the middle of a marathon with a medical emergency and having to decide what to do.
19. I like tempo runs…intervals and long runs not so much.
20. I’ve run 6 marathons and 13 half marathons but still have yet to run my first 5K.
21. On my bucket list of running is to run the Great Wall Marathon and the Hong Kong Marathon. I heard you get prize money if you can run the latter in sub-3:00.
22. The more I run, the more I realize that speed is so personal and relative.
23. I run fast because I was once picked last in a relay race in elementary school.
24. My favorite blog post(s) was my four-part race report from last year’s New York City Marathon…complete with excepts from Liz Robbin’s book describing the state of the course.
25. My favorite part of the run is the shower and the meal after.
Monday, February 9, 2009
Wow, what a difference a week makes! After complaining in my last training update about running slow and falling short on distance, I ended up having my best training week ever this week. Not only was my average pace 15 seconds per mile faster than any week of training I’ve ever had, I also ended up running almost five miles longer than I had planned. (It was originally supposed to be a step-back week this week – Oops!) The best part of all of this is that I still have had no injuries to report. Sweet!
Week #7 (2/2-2/8)
What I Planned:
What I Ran:
How I Ran:
Sunday, February 8, 2009
The Bronx Half Marathon is the second of a five-part grand prix series of half-marathon races held annually in each of the boroughs of
Fast forward to this morning.
After a couple more speedwork sessions and a longish tempo run mid-week, I felt somewhat more prepared to have a good race. My objectives for the race were twofold. First, I wanted to improve upon my Manhattan Half time by a minute. This would put me somewhere in line with where I was at the middle of marathon training last season. Second, I wanted to make sure I run well and strong because I was dedicating this race to a friend who was celebrating her 26th birthday. And since I couldn’t celebrate with her since she lives in an island far far away in the middle of nowhere, I told her I’d think of her as I run half her age in miles to commemorate her special day.
We were blessed today with exceptionally good weather as runners from all over the city packed subway cars and migrated like nomads on the annual pilgrimage to the
I started the race thinking I really should use the first few miles as a warmup. There were three good reasons for this: First, this was a brand new course for me. Second, I was told to expect a lot of hills. And third, because my last go-around through
No sooner after having such thoughts did I turn the corner onto the
After mile 7, we made another hairpin turn onto the Grand Concourse. Here, we were greeted not only with more rolling hills, but also a strong headwind blowing directly at us. The two miles leading to the turnaround was downright brutal. I don’t remember anything from that section of the course other than inaudible voices from the deeper recesses of my memory reminding me when my friend use to say “From where I from, we eat hills like these for breakfast!” So I pushed, pushed, and pushed (Mile 8 at ) until I finally passed the Mile 9 marker at the turnaround point at .
At this point, I decided to take the next mile a bit slower for recovery. I was exhausted from the long climb and needed to cruise a bit before the final push toward the finish. Besides, we were heading back now and I wanted to catch as many of my Flyer teammates coming up the other side as possible. It was so great to see so many familiar faces as I ran by. It made this race feel so much more of a communal affair than any of the others that I had participated in recently. And even though I was struggling internally, I waved and smiled at everyone I recognized because I think they absorb as much positive energy from me as I do from them. My respite caused me only a few second as I passed the Mile 10 marker at , but it was all I needed to recharge my batteries for the final stretch.
After 10, I knew that all that stood between me and the finish line was a short 5K. I didn’t know what my average pace was or what my projected finishing time was, nor did I care. Absolute time wasn’t going to be a goal for me today, as I just wanted to keep my time around . I knew I had lost some time in the debacle on the Concourse but told myself that I’d be in the clear if I can keep my last three miles under pace. Conveniently, mile 11 and 12 were net downhills, so I dared myself to open my stride and recover some of the time I had lost in the preceding miles. During these miles, I passed by more than a dozen runners that had so rudely passed me by in the earlier miles. Mile 11 came and went at while Mile 12 lingered for a few seconds longer at . Finally, on the final mile and .1, I thought about how fortunate I feel not to have given up at mile 5, how beautiful this 55 degree day in the middle of February was, how blessed I feel to be able to run this race with so many Flyer teammates, how wonderful my friend will feel after I tell her about my “gift” run and picked up the pace exponentially towards the finish. As I approached the final .1 mile, I didn’t dare look up at the clock as I found myself in a dead sprint with two other guys. I was able to nick both of them just in the last moments as the announcer declared me the winner in the little group. Time for final 1.1 mile was , good for pace.
It wasn’t even until minutes later when I recovered my senses again and checked my Garmin did I find out the awesome truth. My final finishing time for my half marathon was !!! How funny is that? Such perfect symmetry. Needless to say, I was tickled silly.
So there it is. A
Happy Birthday, F.L.!Final Statistics
Finishing Time – 1:26:11
Average Pace – 6:34; Age Graded % - 68.8
Overall Place – 103/3668 (2.8%)
Age Place – 25
Flyers Place – 2
Thursday, February 5, 2009
This is my contribution to Take It and Run Thursdays which this week asks the question: What is The Secret of How To Qualify for the Boston Marathon? This is a bittersweet topic for me because God knows how many times I’ve asked myself the same question for an entire year between the heartbreak of the 2006 Hartford Marathon (3:11:33) and the victorious 2007 NYC Marathon (3:08:18), when I finally captured my first B.Q. Now that I’ve done it several times and have even trained others to do the same, I believe I owe it to the running community to dispense some of my trusted B.Q. tips. But instead of telling you all what you should do, which isn’t really my style, I’ll just leave you a list of things to avoid. Hopefully, this can be of some use to you in your training. Good Luck
Ten Things You Can’t Do If You Wanna B.Q.
- You can’t B.Q. if you don’t have a plan. This is rather obvious for anyone who’s ever been “in training” for something. In training for a big goal, there are always a series of smaller goals that once completed makes the overall goal a little bit easier and a bit more fathomable to accomplish. To design a series of smaller goals that lead you to your destination involves planning. A better plan leads to better training which ultimately leads to a better race. Everything starts with the plan.
- You can’t B.Q. if you don’t train long and fast. Speedwork and the long run are key workouts for a B.Q. marathon runner. If you’re not willing/able to do either, maybe
just isn’t for you. Boston
- You can’t B.Q. if you don’t have patience and diligence. I've spoken about this in a previous post, but recognize there will be some setbacks and failures in training. During those times, it is essential that you don’t become overly frustrated but remain patient with yourselves. Keep the faith and remain focus on the goal. Chances are you have made tremendous strides in the running, but for one reason or another, the results just haven’t reflected that—yet!
- You can’t B.Q. if you don’t train smart. Always know what workout you are doing and for what specific purpose. This will help you determine the appropriate pace/parameters for each particular run.
- You can’t B.Q. if you don’t eat and sleep right. We all know that eating the right foods can boost training, but it’s a little known fact that most of muscle recovery/regeneration occurs during shut-eye time. If you’re not catching enough Z’s at night, the running will suffer during the day.
- You can’t B.Q. if you’re afraid of the pain. Like Kara and Benard said in their Q&A…Running is hard. Its hard to push yourself when you’re in pain. But that’s what separates the winner and the losers. It’s the ability to harness the pain and make it work for you instead of against you. I love that quote because it’s so true. Part of B.Q. marathon training is learning to embrace the pain instead of fearing it. Making that psychological transition is one of the toughest parts of the training.
- You can’t B.Q. if you can’t see yourself doing it. This is in my opinion the least talked about but most important lesson to learn when training to run a B.Q. No matter how fast you run in your training or in your races leading up to your goal marathon, if you can’t see yourself running your B.Q. time for whatever reason, it is highly unlikely that you will suddenly find that confidence to run well at mile 20.
- You can’t B.Q. if you don’t got “ammo”. “Ammo” is what I call the things that you will use to fight off the marathon demons that inevitably will make an appearance sometime during the race, particularly in the last 6.2 miles. They could be mantras, inspirational quotes, names of people, reasons to run, riddles and/or brain teasers. The more you have, the better chance you have of winning the battles. That’s why I call them “ammo”.
- You can’t B.Q. if the race gods don’t want you to. Sometimes you can train perfectly, prepare adequately, run a good race and still fall short of your goal because of inclement weather, wind, or other distractions. The key is to recognize that there are always going to be external forces beyond your control that will make or break your marathon, and that one single race does not define you as a runner unless you allow it to be.
- You can’t B.Q. if you’re standing on the sideline when the race starts. In order words, you can’t run if you’re injured no matter how fast or long you were running prior to the injury. So make plans, but always listen to your body first.
Have fun in your training, and I’ll see you in
Tuesday, February 3, 2009
Monday, February 2, 2009
For those who didn’t catch the Millrose Games on TV, both Bernard Lagat and Kara Goucher won their respected mile events. Kara won her event pretty handedly while Bernard used his powerful late kick to win his race in the last lap. (You can read a short recap in Runners’ World.) Both of them looked so fast and majestic on TV that I could hardly believe they were the same people I was chatting with just a day ago. Wow. I would’ve thought that just by hanging with them for a little while on Thursday night, some of their speed, wisdom, and strength would have naturally passed onto me, propelling me to an awesome weekend of running. Ummm…apparently, not so much.
Week #6 (1/26-2/1)
What I Planned:
What I Ran:
How I Ran: