Malta 5k Race Recap

VIRTUAL Malta 5K & 10K presented by GlobalFoundries Registration Page

September 11, 2021

This race used to be one of my favorites. Not because the director, Paul Loomis, reads my blog or that my stepson works at Global Foundaries, one of the sponsors of the race. But because of the easy parking, indoor restrooms, post race chocolate milk, generous age group awards, lots of familiar faces to run with and its flawless organization.  For these reasons and more, I kept coming back.

This was my 6th time running this 5k. So you can say that I was familiar with this course. However, I haven’t run the race since 2016. And now they also added a 10k.

The course itself is not very exciting…you are running around chip plants but the loops let you see the fast runners and all those runners that are behind you twice during the race. And though there are a few uphills and downhills, it’s basically flat so no complaints.

For my first two years of running this race, I was recovering from injuries (a broken ankle and then a broken foot.) I finished in 29:53 and 29:49 and was thrilled with a sub-30 minute time.  In 2014 and 2015, I was healthy and so I improved my time to 28:47 and 28:56. Finally I got a course PR in 2016 and finished in 27:30.

However, my hope for the race this year was to finish uninjured and have enough in the tank to run more miles after the race. (My next half marathon is 3 weeks away!!!)

After 5 years off, I had no PR dreams as old age has set in. lol. But if the other old ladies didn’t show up, I could maybe win an AG award.

Pre-Race Activities and Preparations:

Due to work and other stuff, I did not have time to run at all on Thursday or Friday.  But at least I did a run on Monday and Wednesday.

My legs felt pretty good in spite of being only a week after running 13.1 miles. (Maybe those FOUR rest days helped.)

Packet pick-up was on Thursday and Friday at the local Fleet feet store but it wasn’t worth the long drive so I decided to arrive early and pick it up on race day.

Race Day:

The forecast was for cooler weather and sunshine.  Perfect running weather for the second weekend in a row. Hope this is a trend.

I got there early to get parking and did get a spot in the parking lot right near the exit.

As I mentioned, it is very well-organized – signs for the race, indoor and outdoor bathrooms  (Masks were required if you entered the indoor facility.)

Race day packet pick-up was between 7-8 am. You received a State Farm bag with shirt (if you paid an extra $10), running cap, & Hannaford water bottle.  I opted not to buy a shirt.

PPU was normally set up inside but today it was outside due to COVID restrictions.

The 5k race started at 8:30 am (15 minutes after the 10k.)

I walked around to shake out the legs. There was food, drinks and freebies set up.

This was a welcome sight:

There were many more runners than I had expected. I bumped into many that I knew.

three frequent 5k racers (Holly, Nancy & Alice)

Finally we headed to the start line.

I left my friends and moved up.  Not to the front with the speedsters but not far back either.

Mile 1:

There were no corrals but social distancing (and masks) were encouraged.

As usual, I tried to start out slow out probably didn’t.

The course goes straight for about 1.5 miles and then loops back.

Mile 2:

After we passed the mile 1 marker, I looked down at my Garmin and realized that it never started,  I debated whether or not to run without it but in the end I started it (about 1.1 miles)

Halfway through this mile we turned right and ran uphill. Not a steep hill but they always feel hard to me.

This part of the course is nice because you get to see the faster runners and then you loop back and see the slower runners.

the other pix were after the race… you can see me on the right in this one during the race

It was downhill for a bit until we turned.

Mile 3-3.1:

As usual, I was petering out. Since I had no idea what my time was, I wasn’t motivated to run hard. So I walked.  Then I got back my energy for a while until I neared the finish line. Ugh! I walked again.

That gave me the ability to at least to sprint through the finish line.

I was surprised to see 28:XX.

The 10k runners got a medal. The 5k runners only got one if they were under 12.

Post Race:

The refreshments were outside this year. I grabbed some milk and fruit and chatted while waiting for the results.

Heidi whom I ran with at the Run for the Roses 5k

The last time I ran this race (in 2016), everyone got a small bottle of champagne and a gift card to a restaurant.  For 2nd place, it was to the Recovery Room and for $50.

This year there was no awards ceremony and if you won an award, you had to pick it up at the local Fleet Feet store.

I came in 3rd in 10 year age groups.

one second behind 2nd (but this is why I love 5 year age groups)

It was getting warm but I decided to change shoes and shirt and check out the 10K course.  Boy am I glad I didn’t run it. The last few miles of the 10k were uphill the whole way.

After about 4 miles, I had had enough.

I drove one exit south to the Zim Smith Bike Path and parked at Leah’s Cakery.

But instead of running on the bike path, I ran in the town. So cute. The best idea!!

only 2 of those miles were here but it was 9 miles for the day.

Though there was a a lot of walking during those last 6 miles, I still rewarded myself with quiche and a brownie.

Additional Race Reflections:

I was pleasantly surprised with the turn out and also with my time.

I’m pretty sure I would have done better if I had started my watch. I most likely would not have walked twice during the last mile if I knew how well was doing. I’m also pretty sure that my faster finish time was weather-related.

Oh well, there will be more races.  Just happy to be to out there.

Positives:

  • Ample parking.
  • Well marked course.
  • Varied park scenery.
  • Virtual option available.
  • Both 5k and 10 options.
  • A no shirt option (at a lower cost) but you still got a cap.
  • Discount provided if you ran the virtual 2020 race.
  • Participant manual provided several days before the race.
  • Indoor restrooms
  • A real race.
  • Flatish course.
  • Immediate results.
  • Medals (and cold brew coffee) to 10K finishers.
  • Medals to 5k finishers 12 and under.
  • Chocolate milk.
  • Many familiar faces.

Negatives:

  • No water stops (COVID restrictions)
  • No awards ceremony (COVID restrictions)
  • 10 year age groups
  • No medals to 5k finishers over 12.
  • Lack of speed work (my fault).
  • No pace recorded for miles 1.1 (my fault)

Would I recommend this race?

Yes. Great organization. You may be able to PR for the 5k but the 10k would be a challenge.

Final Stats:

Splits:

for the last 2:04 miles of the 5k

Next Up:

Another 5k on Sept 25

and then a half marathon.


Since today is Tuesday, I’m linking up with Zenaida and Kim (Kooky Runner).

Happy Running! Did you run or race this past weekend? Any in-person races on your schedule yet? Please share.

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Run for the Roses 5k Race Recap

My first 5k of 2021 was back in May and I did fairly well. My only goal was to run a in-person race.

Bacon Hill Bonanza- 28:30

I ran my 2nd 5k two weeks ago. That race was a spur of the moment decision. I hate to do speed drills and I wanted to get back some pep in my step. So I signed up for a race. It was quite muggy and I enjoyed the race even though I definitely was NOT as peppy as I had hoped.

FASNY 5k – 29:29

This race, my 3rd 5k race has a different backstory.

I kinda thought I’d do a trail 5k because I enjoyed hiking at Landis Arborteum and there was a 5k scheduled there this weekend.

But I got a FB message about this race from a runner (Lisa) who lives in Indiana and was part of a race-cation in 2014 that I participated in (with her high school classmates.) She was going to be in town this weekend and wanted all of us to race together again.

How could I refuse?

The event consists of a USATF sanctioned 5K foot race, a 2.5 mile guided nature walk, and children’s 1 Mile Fun Run, at Grafton Lakes State Park.

The 5K race was advertised as “challenging but offering runners of all skill levels a beautiful race course through scenic Grafton Lakes State Park, and the surrounding area.” All participants also received a tee-shirt,  book, and a rose. The proceeds form the race go to support the Grafton Community Library.

And so without a second thought, I signed up.

I had never heard of this race but I knew that the area was scenic and I had hiked there in the winter.

As I always do, I scoured the Internet for a review of this race and I found one from someone I actually knew.  This what she started her race recap with: The race director came over to get things going, and opened with “Welcome to the 31st Annual Run for the Roses! As you know, this is one of the toughest 5K courses in the area, so we’re really glad to have you all here today.”

Ok, then. So at least I was prepared beforehand for hills and lots of them. By prepared I mean that I knew about them a few days before.

Pre-Race Activities and Preparations:

Outside of those two races, I mentioned, I have done zero speed work.  In some ways 5ks are harder than half marathons. You feel like you should run fast and before you get warmed up, it’s over. To make things were even more challenging, I never train/run on hills.

The week going into the race had me running 3 times and once long and hilly.

The day before the race, I rested on our boat.

The weather was dry and coolish during the week and of course, started warming up by the weekend.

However, summer race dressing is fairly simple – tank, skirt.

Race Day:

I had my oatmeal and coffee and left early, as usual, for a first time for me race. I was already 70 degrees when I left at 7 am and even drizzled on my way. The rain was  short lived and the sun started peaking out.

This park has lots of trail and places to swim and kayak.

I had no problems finding the race location so I had arrived over an hour before the race start.

I picked up my shirt and bib and waited around for my friends.

Since it was sponsored by the library, you got a free book too. I chose a photography book on France (of course,)

Lisa arrived first and Heidi. We chatted and chatted and soon after Andrea arrived with her husband and father.

obligatory pre-race pic

I recognized a few runners that I knew. There were two guys dressed up as Teletubbies and some serious runners.

I think she was first female.

Soon it was time to head toward the start line.

We didn’t plan to run together. Lisa is very fast and Andrea was planning to run/walk with Heidi. So we took one last pic and separated.

As I mentioned, I only knew that it was a looped course and after the first mile, it was mostly uphill.

May be an image of map and text

 

from my Garmin…it doesn’t look as bad as it felt.

Mile 1

The race started with a slight uphill on the main road leading into the park. Then there was a gradual downhill. The first thing I realized that when I didn’t wear my race bely and had my phone in the pocket, my skirt kept falling down. I decided to just carry my phone in my hand the whole race.

I also tried to pick up the pace since I figured this was the only mile that I would not be walking (and I was right.)  It was breezy by the lake and out on the  road, there was no shade and pretty steamy

Mile 2

There was a water stop at the beginning of this mile and a sprinkler (yay). I was not expecting water but it was welcome. I was getting warm.

The course shifted to flat and then about a quarter mile later, started heading uphill. And yes, I had to walk.

Mile 3- 3.1

There was a second water stop here so I grabbed some and walked even longer.

After turning left around mile 2.1 (yup, 1.5 to 2.1 was pure uphill), we had a short little downhill.

Then it was a pure uphill for the next 0.6, with no breaks at all.

I walked several times during the last 2 miles…not sure how many times.  But due to my walking, I was able to pass those who struggled to run up those hills…including the Teletubbies (lol).

Around mile 2.7, we turned right to get back on the main road that the race had started on.

The uphill continued until 2.9, and then we got a short little downhill (30 feet of drop) before the course flattened out to the finish.

Unfortunately, while the final loop around to the finish was flat, it felt long – we crossed under the start banner and then made a huge circle around the parking lot.

We made the two right hand turns to reverse direction and finally I saw the finish line ahead of me.

I did my best to sprint through the finish line but the hills had sapped much of my energy.

But I saw on the clock that I was finishing under 30 minutes so I was thrilled.

As soon as you crossed the finish line, they handed you a rose. Very sweet.

Elisa was part of another group that I used to run with…she finished just a head of me

Lisa had already finished and we waited and cheered on Andrea and Heidi.

first came the Teletubbies

Heidi had not been running so planned to walk but she didn’t and did great.

Post Race Activities:

We grabbed some water, fruit and cookies while waiting for the awards. Both Lisa and I came in second in our 10 year age groups.

Then we reminisced about our rainy Philly half and discussed possible race-cations we could take together … maybe Arizona next year??

farewell pic with Andrea’s Dad

Everyone  had to rush off so no post-race brunch. If I was more organized I would have brought my bathing suit and stayed and gone swimming.

Instead, on my way home, I stopped at a nearby trail to check out the waterfalls.

Additional Race Reflections:

I would never have picked this race on my own. But I really enjoyed the experience. I feel fortunate to be part of these women’s “tribe.” As Andrea put it: “There are no accidents nor coincidences in life. Everything happens for a reason – so glad our universes collided!” So true.

And it was a lovely small town race with about175 runners. Yes it was challenging but maybe not so much if I trained on hills.

Positives:

  • Friends Reunion
  • A real race.
  • Nice swag – tech shirt, book, a rose
  • location- pretty park with trails and a lake
  • Real bathrooms and showers

Negatives:

  • the HILLS

Would I recommend this race?

Yes. It was well organized.

Final Stats:

Garmin = 29:21 (no timing mat at the start)

another positive split race

yikes… I walked 7 times

Although my finish time was about the same as my last 5k two weeks ago, this course was harder. So I was not disappointed. Obviously if I do not train, I can’t expect those faster times.  But right now, I am content just to be out there running.

Next Up:

Whipple City 5K/10K - Greenwich, New York - Running

August 14, 2021 – I signed for the 10k


Since today is Tuesday, I’m linking up with Zenaida and Kim (Kooky Runner).


I’m also linking up here:

with co-hosts Coach Debbie RunsConfessions of a Mother RunnerMile by MileRuns with Pugs, and Laura Norris Running.

Happy Running! Did you run or race this past weekend?  Any in-person races on your schedule yet? Please share.

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Weekly Run Down for 8.2.21-8.8.21: Runner Reunion

On Sunday, I ran an unplanned 5k race.  I was excited to run it only because I would be meeting up with runners that I ran an half marathon with in 2014 and haven’t run with since.

I can’t believe this rainy race was that long ago. Lisa (3rd from left) lives in Indiana and was in town. Andrea (far right) drove over from VT for today’s 5k.

What was really nice was that I could enjoy the race because I did on my long run on Friday.

Last Week:

  • Monday –  It had rained the night before but it appeared that we may have a dry week.  I got in a walk at lunch (in the neighborhood since I was working from home today).

❤ ❤ sunflowers

and as per usual, I went to my Freihofer group run. It is a training run for beginners and intermediates but as I have mentioned before, there is no advanced group so for me, it’s a chance to run with new and old running friends.

7:2 intervals, each faster

  • Tuesday – A busy work day (even though I was at home. After work, I had to skip my long walk because I had a hair appointment.

Afterwards, I did meet my BFF for walk around the outdoor mall.

  • Wednesday – Back in the office with my new look:

time for a change – cut about 5 inches off

and so the lunch/Starbucks walk happened:

love these colors!!

Today there was a choice for either the Ice Cream group run or the SOAR group run. I enjoy running with the runners in each group so I basically choose by location. Since the ice cream run was at The Crossings where I had run on Saturday and Monday, I chose SOAR.  It was at UAlbany and near my work.

as always, I met someone new and it made my run much more pleasant.

  • Thursday – I thought that I might get up early and run before work today because at the Trail Runs, I mostly walk. But I went to bed late the night before so that didn’t happen.  I even contemplated running at lunch but the wardrobe change is too complicated.

So being in the office again, I took my usual lunch walk:

always finding new pretty color combinations.

The trail run (or walk in my case), was held again at Tawasetha Park.  The course was different but it was still fun and there were so many familiar faces.

  • Friday – DAY OFF from work. Woo Hoo! A running friend was spending the week at a retreat house on Lake George. She invited me up for the day.

Calendar

I ran some insanely hilly hot miles. It helped that the bike path was shady and it was nice to have a change of scenery:

Deirdre ran/walked the first 6 with me and then I ran 4 more solo.

and then we ate, cooled off in the lake, chatted and I read – all with views of the southern part of the lake (not where I boat.)

Georgia O’Keefe painted when staying here. The cold water was so refreshing and necessary!

  • Saturday – Normally this is my long run day but since I had a race the next day, I was planning on meeting my running friends for a walk. However, my hubby wanted to go on our boat (since I had a race the next day.) I had no problem changing my plans. And it was another lovely day on the water.

  • Sunday – Run for the Roses 5K. This was a race that I had never run and a park I had never run in. But it was so fun to meet-up with old running friends (3 states represented). I almost didn’t mind ALL the hills. lol

definitely a hard course and of course, hot and humid but even with all that walking, I came in 2nd in my AG.

I decided afterward to stop to hike at a nearby waterfall.

worth it!!

Afterward on my way to do some grocery shopping, I turned down a road that I hadn’t been down in over 20 years. I was reminiscing about how my teacher friend and I used to meet and walk here every night until I moved. And then I looked up and there she was walking!!!! Very weird. But it gets weirder. She hasn’t walked here since we stopped meeting.

This Coming Week on the Run– 

  • Monday –  FTC run
  • Tuesday – rest day, walk with friends
  • Wednesday – Ice Cream run
  • Thursday – Day at the Race track, ARE Trail Run
  • Friday – rest day, mah jongg
  • Saturday – Whipple City 10k (+ more miles)
  • Sunday –rest day, walk/hike, boating?

This Coming Week on the Blog – 

  • Tuesday – Run for the Roses 5k Race Recap
  • Friday – Returning to Peleton

I am linking up with Kim and Deborah for

I encourage you to do the same. Grab the graphic, drop your link on the host blogs and play along! Please be sure to always comment on the HOST’s blogs, as well as visit and comment on as many other blogs as you can.

Happy Running! How is your running going? Any in-person races planned? Have you ever participated in a reunion with runners? Ever run a race just because others are running it? Please share.

FASNY 5K Race Recap

2021 FASNY Hudson 5K Run/Walk

July 25, 2021

This was a spur of the moment decision. I hate to do drills and I would like to get back some pep in my step. So I signed up for a 5k.

During the year of COVID, there wasn’t much racing going on.  I kept running and mostly ran slow long runs or half marathons.

Things have been slowly opening up but still not too many racing opportunities.

I used to just race every weekend. Now that I have friends to run with on the weekend, I’m being more selective in my races.  I passed up a few 5ks in favor of this one because I wanted to run in a different location.

I wasn’t exactly sure about the course but I have several times in the past raced in Saratoga State Park … and enjoyed it.

13592347_10207200017179843_5463760716667114421_n

Voila. This 5k!

Of course, I wasn’t thinking that it was mid-July. Hello heat and humidity.

So although my last 5k was in May and I did fairly well, now I was doubtful that I would be any faster in this race.

Bacon Hill Bonanza- 28:30 & AG winner

Pre-Race Activities and Preparations:

Saturday is my normal long run day and I have a half marathon on September. Instead I went up to the lake with the hubby.

My plan to was to add more miles after the race the next day and so it could count as a “long” run.

There was a lot of relaxing going on. Since I had pizza per usual on Friday night, I ate a healthy pre-race dinner of … ice cream.

As per summer of 2021, the forecast had rain in it.  I’ve given up trying to prepare for it so just planned to wear my usual race outfit – tank & skirt.

Race Day:

I knew zilch about this race and knew no one running it. I was hoping there were be a decent crowd. (I once ran a 5k with 18 people lol)

It was an inaugural race and this company normally organizes races in NYC and LI.  So there were no reviews that I could read.

I looked up the last FASNY 5K race in June and there were only 20 runners. Yikes.

It rained on and off all night but when I woke up, it was only drizzling. I thought that I might get lucky and have a dry race. Just to be safe, I added another shirt, shoes, and rain poncho to my race gear.

I knew the start was at the Warming Hut in Saratoga State Park.  I left early because I didn’t remember exactly where that was in the huge park.

It turned out that it was really easy to find so I arrived early. Remember that drizzle? It was now a downpour.

I just sat in my car until it let up a little so I could get my bib.  Good thing I had an umbrella.

No shirt but a cooling neck thing (that I would never use). #13! Isn’t that an unlucky number?

The rain continued to come down but I just waited. I drove too far to not race.

Eventually, the rain did lighten and I got out of my car to head to the start.

Thumbs up because it was no longer raining hard. Notice that I decided NOT to wear WHITE running shoes…

It was a small crowd as predicted (35 runners). I did know three runners (whom I befriended when I used to run 5ks every weekend.)

I thought that the race would probably start on grass, continue to the roads with some hills thrown in.

I was totally wrong. It was an out and back on different paths in the park

and pretty flat.

If it weren’t for the unhealthy air conditions and the oppressive humidity, it would have been a nice race.

But unfortunately, it was one of those days. And one of those races that you want to forget and move on.

Mile 1:

The race started on a muddy dirt path and then we turned left and ran on a path along a road in the park. It was quite narrow and crowded but the real problem was the puddles of mud that you had to weave around.

My feet were immediately soaked and then I had to stop to tie my shoe. It was actually a relief since my legs felt like lead from the get go. Probably due to getting out of the car and starting to run right away.

Eventually we turned left onto a wider and drier path.

The first mile felt like a marathon. I had a hard time breathing and walked again.  It was so steamy that a little rain would have been welcomed.  But as you may have guessed, it stayed dry the whole race.

Mile 2:

We continued on this path until the turn around. I tried to slow down my pace so that I was not so out of breath and to focus on the scenery more as it is such a pretty place to run.

Mile 3- 3.1:

We continued on the same path as we started. So puddles and more puddles. I’m pretty sure that I walked again at the beginning of this mile and again toward the end.

At this point, the runner had spread out. I was never running alone but there was no one that I as trying to keep up with or pass. I was just trying to get to the finish line.

The return course changed slightly as we didn’t turn onto the path we started on. We continued straight and then turned in on an even muddier path.

Finally I caught a glimpse of the end and picked up the speed.

After I crossed the finish line, I grabbed a small bottle of water and waited for my friends to finish. There was no food or age group awards.

My first thoughts were pretty negative: Why did I pay money for this?  Why did this race feel so hard? How could I possibly run a half marathon?

Luckily these thoughts quickly switched to being happy to race again and to being outside in a beautiful park while I was chatting with other runners about upcoming races that we were all planning to run.

Post Race:

it was a good thing that I brought along some Gu since there were no post-race refreshments.

After a short rest, I was feeling more energetic and decided to enjoy the scenery in this park. So I started out to re-trace the 5k route.

Somehow, I missed the turn around and then turned left to run on a path along the main road.

and then I successfully circled back to my car. My friends were still there so we chatted. Then I continued running in the opposite direction. The gardens in this park are fabulous.

I then ran past the golf course and eventually back to my car.

So I got my long run done (3 + 3 + 3) and rewarded myself with some goodies at the farmer’s market there.

Additional Race Reflections:

Positives:

  • Ample parking.
  • Well marked course.
  • Varied park scenery.
  • Virtual option available.
  • A real race.
  • Flat course.
  • Immediate results.
  • Free photos.

Negatives:

  • No age group awards.
  • No race shirt.
  • No spectators.
  • Only 35 runners.
  • Poor air quality.
  • Very humid temps.
  • No water stop.
  • No post-race refreshments (just water)
  • Lack of speed work (my fault).

Would I recommend this race?

Nah.

I only chose this race because of its location and that there were no other races on the schedule. In hindsight, I should have skipped it and done my long run with my friends the day before.

Final Stats:

I wasn’t expecting a PR or a fabulous finish time. Could I have fun faster or walked less?  Maybe. But there didn’t seem to be a reason to.  No age group awards. I was just running for me and because it makes me feel good to race.

I was a little disappointed in that my pace was faster in both of my previous 4 mile races on more difficult courses.

I could blame the weather. But it doesn’t really matter. There will be other races. I may run better or I may run worse.

A friend recently wrote on FB about long runs and races: “They are like a box of chocolates. You never know what you’ll get.”

So true.

Next Up:

Another 5k on August 8.


Since today is Tuesday, I’m linking up with Zenaida and Kim (Kooky Runner).


I’m also linking up here:

with co-hosts Coach Debbie RunsConfessions of a Mother RunnerMile by MileRuns with Pugs, and Laura Norris Running.

Happy Running! Did you run or race this past weekend? Did you experience a heat wave? Any in-person races on your schedule yet? Please share.

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Weekly Run Down for 7.19.21-7.25.21: Race Week

It feels good to say Race Week.

But actually it was just a 5k that I registered for on a whim.  Still it was a race.

With no days off this week, I had to work in the office for three days – Monday, Wednesday, Friday.

We’ve had record rain fall in July and the threat of rain most days continued this week as well.

Last Week:

  • Monday – Woke up to rain… AGAIN! (Wondering if I should build an ark.)

Back in the office so not much activity except for a drizzly lunch Starbucks walk around the mall

and then in the evening when my Freihofer Training Challenge (FTC) group run was scheduled.

The rain had stopped and it warmed up for us to run. I ran with two runners a not so easy 3 miles.

  • Tuesday – A busy work day at home but it was a rest day.  I started the day with a short walk.

the sky was hazy (from the forest fires out West) but the sun was amazing!!

And ended it with a long walk after with my friends. We again had to deal with the threat of thunderstorms.  But we got it done before the rain!!

  • Wednesday – Back in the office and the weather cooperated for a Starbucks/lunch walk. Finally a breeze and low humidity.

just love the colors of these petunias everywhere

After work, no ice cream run this week but instead the SOAR group run was offered at the new Electric Rail trail. I had run there before and it was not my favorite (uphill, no shade) but I hated to turn down the opportunity to run with other ladies so I went. Glad I did, of course. I made a few new friends and although it rained in many places, we stayed dry!!!

  • Thursday – Working from home today but too busy to run. So after work, I quickly ran a few miles

and then met Barbara to carpool to tonight’s ARE weekly Trail run. This week it was held at Indian Ladder Farms.. Grass, trails, hills and dinner after. A good time was had by all.

it was mostly fast walking but the miles count in my book lol

  • Friday – Our running group had a Moonlight Paddle scheduled that had to be canceled (flooding) so I decided to add in another short run before my mah jongg game.

Since I was in the office, I had planned to run at UAlbany.  Just like old times. But a friend asked me to run with her on the rail trail… so I met her there to run. There will plenty of UAlbany runs when I go back to the office full-time.

  • Saturday – LONG RUN Saturday was changed to a walk for me and then cancelled. Due to rain in the forecast for Sunday (and my race), I decided to go up to the lake with the hubby instead.

such beautiful flowers in this town

I did get in a walk around town but for the most part, it was sitting and reading and relaxing in the sun. Ahhhh!

the weather was perfect and even finished my book

  • Sunday – Race Day! FASNY 5k.
    I can’t that this was a good race or a successful one.

but the rain did stop and I liked the course.

(More details to come in a later post.)

I loved running n the beautiful park so that was the highlight of the morning.

this was also a big farmer’s market there with delicious treats.

This Coming Week on the Run– 

  • Monday –  FTC run
  • Tuesday – rest day, walk with friends
  • Wednesday – Ice Cream run
  • Thursday – ARE Trail Run
  • Friday – rest day, mah jongg
  • Saturday – LONG Run
  • Sunday – rest day, boating/hiking

This Coming Week on the Blog – 

  • Tuesday – Running Solo
  • Friday – Runfessions

I am linking up with Kim and Deborah for

I encourage you to do the same. Grab the graphic, drop your link on the host blogs and play along! Please be sure to always comment on the HOST’s blogs, as well as visit and comment on as many other blogs as you can.

Happy Running! How is your running going? Any in-person races planned? Have you been experiencing summer temps where you live? Any vacations planned? Please share.

Bacon Hill Bonanza 5k Race Recap

                 May 22, 2021 – 10:00 am

Every year, I plan to sign up for the 10k and then I chicken out.

10K

I know that the hills would be good training but… the 5k is an out and back and mostly flat.

5k – but not as flat as it looks (some rolling hills)

This year, due to COVID, the 10K race was only virtual. So I had no choice and registered for the 5k. I planned to run 7 hilly miles after (to prepare for a 10 mile race the week after).

Pre-Race Activities and Preparations:

This small race in the country has always been one of my favorite races. I have run it for the five years straight (2013-18) and enjoyed it each time. (I was out of town in 2019 and it was cancelled in 2020). It was always well-organized and had great food – the usual food but also chili and homemade muffins & cookies (including gluten free ones).

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And there was chocolate milk, fresh from the dairy. (You know how I LOVE chocolate milk post-race.)

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Plus, I also have won a homemade pie as first in my age group for the past five years. 28:56, 28:01, 27:54, 27:32, 27:01. Yes, it seems that I was getting faster but I haven’t run this race since 2018.

Lately I don’t feel very fast. In fact, I was highly doubtful that I could finish under 30 minutes.

my most recent 5k – 30:36 (Dec. 2020)

The in-person version of the race was only open to a limited number of participants due to COVID restrictions. To keep the number of people on site down for safety reasons, no spectators were able to join this year. The in-person 5k had a staggered, socially-distanced start to the race.

Packet pick-up was a drive by the night before. But since I lived so far away, I planned to pick mine up the morning of the race.

Again the weather was tricky. What to wear? I was brave the first two years and wore a skirt, a baseball cap and no gloves. It was April, right? Then the next three years, it was cold and I resorted to capris.

This year since the race was later in the year, the weather was more summer-like. In fact maybe too warm.  I decided to wear:

one of my oldest tanks and skirts.

Of course, I had pizza for my race carb loading (yes I carb load even for 5ks. lol)

Race Day:

The race started at 10 am which was great since it would be an hour drive from my house.

After my race breakfast of oatmeal and coffee, I left my house around 8 am. It was already 75 degrees and humid. Uh oh!

I got to the race early (around 9 am) and found a parking spot in a grassy field next to the church. The race started at the church in the town of Bacon Hill, a small farming town with awesome scenery. (It reminded me of Vermont.)

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these pics are from other years…everything still looked the same)

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So as soon as I arrived, I picked up my shirt and bib and then went back to my car to drop off my shirt.

I wasn’t sure that I would know anyone at this race since most of the runners that I usually run this race with were not coming.

I stopped by the timing truck to say hello to my former FTC coach who usually asks me if I was going to PR.  But he wasn’t there. No pressure 🙂

I walked around a bit scouting out the logistics (and fighting off the bugs).

But I did bump into a few runners that I knew and we hung out chatting. Luckily there was bug spray available since the bugs were pretty annoying.

There was music playing and a little over 100 runners. Much fewer than usual because there was a virtual option for both the 5k and 10k.

Eventually at 9:45, they directed us to our corrals. There were labelled by finish time. I think I headed to corral 4 (25-27 minutes). That was very optimistic but in that corral, I noticed some very fast runners and some slower ones. Obviously it didn’t matter since there were no awards and the race was chip timed.

Did I mention that it was HOT and humid? Usually this race is held in April hence the late start time.

I was sweating already and couldn’t wait to get rid of my mask.

Miles 1-1.5

The pastor read a prayer, the church bells rang and we were off.

I threw my mask in a trash can (since they would giving us another mask as we finished).

The 5k was an out and back.

I decided to go out fast. I always have positive splits so why try not to. Unfortunately my fast now is not what it used to be (to some I was never fast and to  others, I still am fast. Remember pace is so individual.)

I laughed. They meant the turtles in the pond on the left, I was thinking “slower runners.”

The course wasn’t as flat as the map showed. The hills were rolling throughout but not that bad. Even I could run up them.

I loved all the signs along the route. Many of them were riddles.  I wish I could remember them but they were a nice distraction.

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the pics are from a previous year but the signs were similar

This one was my favorite:

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My legs really protested my attempt for speed. I felt my 5k racing lay-off.

There were no volunteers on the course calling out times.  There were mile markers and a few scattered volunteers cheering on the runners.

A little past the one mile marker, there was a water stop. A real one with volunteers handing out water. I walked for a while (too long) here since I was very hot and thirsty.

Mile 1.5-3.1:

Eventually we turned around and headed back…. I realized quickly that I had gone out too fast.  I could not keep up that pace (I was wearing my Garmin but I never looked at it until the race was over.)

I did get a breather since my left shoe got untied (yes, I double knotted it.)

I continued running at what seemed a much slower pace.  Now I felt a blister forming on my right foot (or maybe both feet!?)

And then the other shoe got untied. Grrr.

Finally there was one mile to go and I couldn’t wait to finish and get that chocolate milk.

the finish line is right next to the cemetery – obviously not from this year (look at the clothes!

As I approached the finish line, I sprinted as fast as I could (and stopped my watch.)

The clock said: 30:xx but my watch said 28:20! I was happily surprised at my time.

I immediately grabbed a mask and made a bee line for the chocolate milk.

nope. this year, they gave you a bottle.

A volunteer handed everyone a bag of home baked cookies. Not the same selection of refreshment as in pre-Pandemic years.

Hey, a in-person race!! Not complaining!!

both the milk and the cookies were yummy!

I never checked the results since there were no age group awards.

I changed my shoes and shirt and waited for some friends to finish.

Then I decided to try to run 7 additional miles to be prepared the next week’s 20 mile race.

I headed out on the 10K course (which was marked for the virtual race.) Pretty scenery but tough.  It was hot and still humid plus those blisters! I threw in the towel after 3 miles.

Instead of torturing myself, I opted to explore some local trails to get in the miles.

Dionondahowa Falls

Hudson Crossings Park Trails

Ten miles on the legs for the day….even though most were not done by running.

As they say “The hay is in the barn.”

Additional Race Reflections:

Positives:

  • Safety restrictions in place (staggered starts).
  • Ample parking.
  • Well marked course.
  • Beautiful countryside scenerym
  • Chocolate milk and homemade cookies as post-race refreshments.
  • Super friendly volunteers
  • Virtual option.
  • A real race.

Negatives:

  • No Spectators (due to COVID).
  • No 10K option (due to COVID).
  • Few food options (due to COVID).
  • No age group awards.
  • Cotton race shirt.
  • Late start time.
  • Warm and humid temps.
  • Untied shoes (2x)
  • Lack of speed work (my fault).
  • Bib chip didn’t register.

Would I recommend this race?

Yes.

It was super well-organized. Special attention was paid to EVERY detail. It will be even more fun when there are no COVID restrictions and it is scheduled in April when the weather is cooler.

Final Stats:

this was probably a PW for this race but I was happy to show a little speed especially with the humidity

you can see that water stop and shoe tying stops

But I was thrilled with my time.  I wasn’t expecting much.  I did exactly what I had planned.  Just run. I wasn’t ever tired so I definitely think I could have run faster.  But there didn’t seem to be a reason to.  No age group award. I was just running for me and because it makes me feel good to race.

All in all, I loved this race. I will definitely do it again…maybe even the 10K someday.

On a side note:

My chip never recorded my time. This has happened before with this type of chip (due to hanging the bib from my belt.) I contacted the timing company. No biggie since there were no awards. They added my Garmin time to the results the next day (I’m pretty sure my finish time was after this …)

and a virtual pie to the AG winner lol

Next Up:

A local 10 mile race.

May 30, 2021


Since today is Tuesday, I’m linking up with Zenaida and Kim (Kooky Runner).


I’m also linking up here:

with co-hosts Coach Debbie RunsConfessions of a Mother RunnerMile by MileRuns with Pugs, and Laura Norris Running.

Happy Running! Did you run or race this past weekend? Did you experience a heat wave? Any in-person races on your schedule yet? Please share.

runner-sig

Weekly Run Down for 5.17.21-5.23.21: More Birthday Celebrations and a 5k

Due to the amount of dessert consumption this week, I should have walked, run or hiked much more!!

I ran a race on Saturday. Normally a 5k would be nothing to sweat about. I have already done in-person races this year – two half marathons, a 5 miler and a 5.67 miler up a mountain. But this 5k seemed daunting. I don’t remember how to run fast lol.

Last Week:

  • Monday – I had to squeeze in my run during lunch since my BFF was taking me out to diner as a belated birthday gift.

Note to self: running on a very warm sunny day at NOON is not a great idea

I picked a restaurant where we could walk afterwards.

that is Cannoli cake – and yes we walked for 2 hours after eating half of that!!

  • Tuesday – A busy work day gave only enough time to take a walk after work with friends. We decided to switch it up and walk near my friend’s apartment rather than on the rail trail.  Then we stopped in for munchies and wine after.  What I didn’t know was that it was a surprise birthday party.

food and flowers….I am so lucky! (on the right is one of the trees in my friend’s neighborhood.)

  • Wednesday – Another busy work day so I ran after work. I headed to the rail trail since I was nearby picking up my car (air conditioning fixed $$).

At the last minute I decided on the other end of the rail trail for varied scenery. Boy this was a struggle (hot and humid).

I am glad that I decided to run there rather than in my neighborhood.

a black bear was spotted at the same time…yikes!

  • Thursday – Today I squeezed in a quick run during lunch.

hot and humid again and it was garbage day… had to veer off and run some on the water line (no bear sighting)

After work again, I met a friend for a walk on the rail trail.

we found a cool resting spot under the bridge and along the creek

  • Friday – A rest day. And my hubby’s birthday!! No big celebration. Just some pizza and ice cream cake for dessert.

But before dinner, I met a friend for a walk at the Pine Hollow Arboretum for a change of pace since she had never been there.

she loved so we’ll be going back

  • Saturday – Race Day – Bacon Hill Bonanza 5k. It used to be one of my favorite (and most successful) 5ks.  But it’s been a while since I raced a 5k or even ran fast. I gave it my best shot and had lots of fun. That is what really matters not finish times or awards.

chocolate milk and home baked cookies = great race… despite a long water stop and 2 stops for untied shoelaces, my finish time was way better than expected.

Afterward, I reluctantly added on some more torturous miles.  Hot and Humid!!  I had hoped for 7 more miles but I barely made it to 3!

Then I stopped by some local trails. The first one was had waterfalls and it was lovely.

The second one was along the Hudson River.

And so I had to hurry home to get ready to go out to dinner to celebrate my hubby’s birthday.

  • Sunday – My running friends were doing a local 5k.  FOMO.

But I had to go up and help my hubby get our boat ready for the summer.

last year’s first weekend boating pic

This Coming Week on the Run– 

  • Monday –  run
  • Tuesday – rest day, hair appt
  • Wednesday – SOAR run
  • Thursday – rest day, bib pick-up, walk with friends
  • Fridayrun
  • Saturday – rest day, boating?
  • Sunday – Miles Along the Mohawk 10 mile race

This Coming Week on the Blog – 

  • Tuesday – Bacon Hill Bonanza 5k Race Recap
  • Friday – Runfessions

I am linking up with Kim and Deborah for

I encourage you to do the same. Grab the graphic, drop your link on the host blogs and play along! Please be sure to always comment on the HOST’s blogs, as well as visit and comment on as many other blogs as you can.

Happy Running! How is your running going? Any in-person races planned? Have you been experiencing summer temps where you live? Any vacations planned? Please share.

NYCRuns Winter Classic 5k Recap

Dec. 6, 2020

My First Pandemic 5k and my first trip to NYC since January.

As I mentioned to friends, I was more excited about leaving my home and going to NYC than racing.  But this race was a good excuse as well as being able to see the city during the holidays.

All week long, they had forecast rain for both Saturday and Sunday.  I didn’t want to go if it was raining (since I planned to be outside most of the time.) Then they changed the forecast to only rain on Saturday.  Eventually, it was only going to rain on Saturday morning. So I kept my hotel reservations and made train reservation to arrive in the late afternoon.

I took the train and with all the restrictions in place, I felt pretty safe (with my mask on and empty seats around me.)  When I arrived, I walked to my hotel (for which I had a free room due to points) and left off my luggage.

Even though it was the day before a race, I still planned a lot of walking (as I wanted to avoid the subway as much as possible) and check out all the holiday decorations.

walked to the top of the Vessel for the sunset views.

Then I had dinner (that I brought from home) in my hotel room. Not my usual pasta/pizza (and a big mistake, I think).

I went back out to explore more of the city and the night time holiday decorations.

Sixth Avenue, Rockefeller Center, Bryant Park and more…

Finally I returned back to my hotel to plan out the next day – the race!

Before registering for this race, I checked their COVID restrictions:

  • You may not attend the event if you have experienced symptoms of COVID-19 or tested positive in the fourteen (14) days prior to the event.
  • You must wear a face covering throughout this event other than when running.
  • When running, you may remove the covering only when you can maintain social distance and the covering must remain around your head in some fashion so it can easily be reapplied. The covering must be worn for the first 500 and last 500 feet of the race (it should be on when you reach the mile 3 marker.)
  • No guests are allowed at the race site
  • Upon entry to the race site, a medical professional will take and record your temperature.
  • To avoid crowding, you must show up on time for your designated wave and leave immediately after completing your race.
  • Running in a group of two or more is not permitted.
  • If you test positive for COVID-19 within the fourteen days following the event, you must email theteam@nycruns.com so that we may notify staff and participants as necessary.

NYCRuns also had two 5ks already and both received excellent reviews. So I was not nervous at all about this race compromising my health and others.

Last 5K: June 2019!!!!

27:47 Finish time – sigh.

In addition to not having run a 5k race in 18 months, I was a little worried that I had done ZERO speed work and had only been running at a slow easy pace.  But in my eyes, it was only a run in NYC.  There would be no age-group awards just a gaiter given to everyone.

Pre-Race Activities and Preparations:

As I mentioned above, I arrived in NYC the day before. I already had my bib so all I needed to do was explore the city on foot, have dinner in my room (on the 32nd fl), explore the city some more in the evening and try to go to bed early.

I also had to decide what to wear (which is harder when you travel.) I chose to wear my gaiter (but had a mask in my pocket just in case.) Otherwise, I tried to be matched and warm (but not too warm).

Long sleeved shirt, vest (no jacket). I thought that I would be warm enough but wasn’t prepared for the colder temps along the river and for the WIND!!

Race Day:

Unfortunately I had a miserable night of sleep (if any). My room was uncontrollably HOT and that soggy Subway sandwich did not sit well in my stomach). I woke up with a headache and upset stomach.

I brought my oatmeal and coffee with me to eat it in my hotel room but had no appetite. Ugh!  Surprisingly, I didn’t consider staying in bed. I couldn’t wait to get into the fresh air and to the race. I knew it would make me feel better (and I was right.)

I had to decide which was safer an Uber or the subway. It was way too far to walk as my hotel was on 39th and the race started on 108th (or so I thought). I chose the Uber and then I would walk home after the race. I brought a bag to check a jacket since I knew I would be cold after the race.

Course:

As advertised:

This race will start and finish near 108th Street inside Riverside Park. You’ll wind through tree-lined paths and waterfront walkways on this totally traffic-free and peaceful course. The course is challenging, but offers plenty of downhills to make up for the uphills! 

The waves started as early as  8 AM and ending at 12:30PM. I was scheduled for a 9 am start.

I checked the race email one more time in the Uber and it said to enter the park at 96th St.  Very confusing. So I got left off around 100th (in the middle).

I walked down to Riverside Park.  I was very early luckily. I had no idea which direction to walk.  I saw no racers.  I asked a runner and she said that she saw a start line around 97th St. And she was right. They changed the start (from previous races) to 97th St.

It was only 8:00 so I got to see the first group of runners take off.

I walked around as it was FREEZING and chatted with other runners waiting to start.  I didn’t want to leave my jacket at bag check until the very last moment.

brrr.

Eventually I had to and around 8:30 I entered the medical area where someone took my temperature. As you can see from the pic above, you stood two by two 6 ft apart and the person behind you was also 6 ft apart.

I wound starting with the 8:30 group (accidentally).

I actually wore my Garmin and was planning on recording my time with it (for the first time since Feb 2020).

 

(Too cold to take pictures during the race or after but below are a few from previous runs here:)

Mile 1:

As you can see from the map above, the race course was in a park along the Hudson River.  This park is not one I have run on frequently (I usually run in Central Park. ) But it is a nice place to run, walk or bike. What I am getting at is that it was not closed to other runners, bikers and dog walkers.  Due to the pandemic, it probably was not as crowded as it could have been.

So I took off with a younger runner and we ran together (masked) for a little bit.  She was faster and got ahead but could see her in my sight the whole race.

I had no time goals but since it was a race you know I wanted to not have an embarrassing time (that differs for everyone but for me it would be over 29 minutes lol).

I glanced down at my watch and noticed that my frigid hands had apparently not started it (!?)

Alrighty, another naked race.

So I just ran. Looking down so not to trip on cracks or slip on mud puddles (from yesterday’s rain) and more importantly, avoid the dogs.

I found out later from my friend that before 9 am, dogs do not have to be leashed here.  OY!!!

Also a lot of walkers had no idea that a race was going on.

All this kept me from obsessing about my time. It was not only COLD (20s with the wind chill) but crazy WINDY.  My hands and feet were frozen (but that didn’t keep my shoe that I doubled knotted from untying :).

I wish that I had started my watch so I could show you the elevation. It was VERY hilly. Up and downs but that made it interesting. I thought I might try to run up the hills but in the end, I walked/ran most of them.

Most runners had on their masks the whole time. Not sure if it was for safety or the cold. I think I had mine on…don’t remember but I’m glad it was a gaiter so it kept both my neck and face warm. (It was required at the start and finish lines.)

Mile 2:

For the 2nd mile, we turned and were running more along the river…colder and more windy. Yay!  But I think this part was flatter.

It was also now sunnier. I put on my sunglasses. But they kept fogging up. Grrr.

At mile 1.5, there was the turn around.

Halfway done.

Now we were running along side other runners who had started the race in later waves.  But it was wide enough not to feel crowded.

Mile 3:

A little past mile 2, we returned to the first part of the course.  Yup, those annoying hills in the reverse direction.

I just kept moving, passing some runners.  Runners were not passing me as they stayed ahead the whole race.

Finally I saw that finish line.  And the camera.  I tried to smile…Ha Ha. I was wearing my gaiter.

The clock read 1:02:XX but who knew what my actually time was.

I just wanted to get warm!! They handed you a bag of food. I sanitized my hands and headed to get my jacket.

DONE!!!

I immediately texted my friend who lives in Manhattan to arrange a meet-up. Unfortunately, Cari was still quarantining.

But first thing was to find a Starbucks to get a hot cup of coffee.  Ok, in NYC there is usually one on every corner.  Well, not during pandemic times.

After striking out 3 times, I found one.

soo good. sooo needed.

I kept walking and met up with Elizabeth around 72nd Street. We proceeded to chat our way around Central park until around 1 pm.

got to explore North Woods and Hudson Meer where I don’t normally hang out

I then walked all the way back to my hotel, had lunch and checked out so I could continue my holiday sightseeing before taking the train back north.

didn’t stray much beyond Fifth Avenue

18 miles for the day!!!!!!! I think it makes that I skipped my normal 10 mile run okay…

Additional Race Reflections:

It sounds like this was a negative experience.  You can’t control the weather.  And my feet did not hurt.  That’s a good thing.

Could I have run faster?

For sure.

Do I wish I has started my Garmin?

YES!  I love stats and in a short race, I think I could have made up time.

haven’t run a 5k this slow (uninjured & in dry weather) since maybe 2008, my first year of running.

I have come in FIRST in  my 6 previous NYCRUNS races. But no AG awards were given for this race.

Even so, at my best, I would not have won.

It would be nice if the site didn’t remind me of my last two races lol.

I’m ok with it. Totally 🙂

This is me now!!

very glad how I chose to spend the day

Positives:

  • Safety restrictions in place (temp. checks, staggered starts).
  • Wave starts so I got to start whenever I chose (between 8 am & 12:30 pm)
  • Views of the Hudson R.
  • Well marked course.
  • A real race.
  • Gaiter as swag (received beforehand in the mail).
  • Well organized.
  • Bag check offered.
  • Bib mailed ahead of time.
  • Post race refreshments (goodie bag along with Gatorade, Dole Fruit Bowls in 100% Juice and other snacks.)
  • No age group awards (a positive for me so I didn’t feel disappointed that I didn’t win one).
  • Free photos.
  • Spending time in NYC at holiday time.
  • Opportunity to connect (social distancingly) with a friend.
  • A real race.

Negatives:

  • No water stops (no volunteers).
  • No spectators.
  • Those nasty hills.
  • Used to be the Hot Cocoa 5k and you got hot cocoa at at the end (but understand why it was changed).
  • Expensive for a 5k ($40-60) but it is NYC.
  • My NYC friends were not able to join me in this race.
  • Tired legs (from the previous night’s walking).
  • Lack of speedwork prior to the race.
  • No sleep and upset stomach.
  • Dogs to trip on during the race.
  • Course advertised as starting and finishing on 108th rather than 97th.

Next Up:

????

Who knows?  Nothing local is currently scheduled. I’m not interested in running any virtual races.

Maybe a half marathon in Fort Lauderdale on Feb. 14 (if it is live and if it is safe to go.)


Since today is Tuesday, I’m linking up with Zenaida and Kim (Kooky Runner).


I’m also linking up here:

with co-hosts Coach Debbie RunsConfessions of a Mother RunnerMile by MileRuns with Pugs, and Laura Norris Running.

Happy Running! Have run a real race yet? If so, how did go? Are you planning to run one? Please share.

runner-sig

Weekly Run Down for 11.30.20-12.6.20: NYC Bound?

Lots of running and good weather last week.

Hoping for more of the same though not optimistic for two weeks in a row. And unfortunately, there was quite a bit of rain this week.   In other words, getting wet on my runs.

My tentative plan for the weekend was to break away from my computer and go to NYC to race, meet up with friends, see the holiday decorations, etc.

But I waited until the last minute to decide: if I felt safe, if the predicted rain would happen and if I would have fun if wearing a mask for the entire weekend.

Stay tuned…

Last Week –

  • Monday – Normally my run day (#nevemissamonday) but there was hard rain on the way. I managed to sneak in a run outside before work (not early enough for sunrise). It was cloudy, humid but the forecast lied.  It started to rain as soon as I started running. The rain was light until the last mile.

I’m smiling because I found in one of the small library boxes, a copy of two of my favorite holiday videos. Yes, I stuffed them inside my waist band and ran 2 miles like that. Who doesn’t love “Love Actually”?

It rained harder as the day wore on…not even tempted to go for lunch walk.  Only ventured out after work to do errands.

  • Tuesday – Woke up to pouring rain again!  And then the power went off. I ventured out to see what was wrong since it was only raining lightly.  Got in only a mile before I got drenched. Without Internet, I could not work.  When the rain lightened, I went out again.  This time the rain stopped and the sun came out.  A power line had come down and by 10:15 am, we had power back and I could work.

actually very warm out and got my unplanned run done in two installments.

It looked like the temps would be dropping so I went for a walk during lunch. And indeed, windy and much colder than the morning. Dressed warmer for my post work walk.

  • Wednesday – Another cloudy cold morning with rain/snow on the way. I did get in a walk at lunch… I thought about running but just didn’t feel like it.  After work, I decided to venture out. It was less windy but still COLD! I should have checked the forecast because as soon as I started to run, it started to rain. Light at first but then it changed to freezing rain (the third day in a row getting wet on the run!!) I stopped my run at that point and headed to the library to return some books. Then the rain stopped and I finished my run.  At this point it felt delightful.

pt 1 on the rail trail and pt 2 in town and the neighborhood

  • Thursday – It looked finally like a day without rain.  There was even some sunshine though colder than previous days. I walked at lunch at a nearby nature preserve.

I hadn’t been in awhile…sure looked different without all the leaves on the trees…and boy, was it MUDDY!

After work, I met a friend to run through the holidays lights in the park… so fun.

Then I met my BFF for our usual 1.5 hr walk around an outdoor mall.

  • Friday – Debating all morning about the rainy forecast for NYC. Normally I would not mind but I planned to walk (rather than take the subway), eat take out (rather than in restaurants), visit the sites (rather than shop) … all would not be fun in the pouring rain.

I eventually opted to slow short run at lunch (yes, 5 days in a row) but then skip my long run on Saturday. (My group wasn’t gathering anyway due to the rain forecast.)

Hit for the water line since it was more convenient & I felt like avoiding the cars and dog walkers in the ‘hood. Even on a cloudy day, you can find beauty in nature.

Ended the day with some errands (in prep for my NYC trip) and my usual friends walk.

  • Saturday – A lazy morning (skipped my walk) but packed instead. I had decided to take an afternoon train to NYC.  My plan was to avoid traipsing around all day in the rain and just stay later on Sunday.

I arrived around 4 pm, checked into my hotel.  It was almost sunset so I rushed to the Vessel (I had pre-bought tix) to get in a view.  (and it was no longer raining and not cold.)

It never disappoints…even prettier than the pics.

Then I continued to walk around the area taking in the festive atmosphere.

Sixth Avenue, Saks, Rockefeller Center, Bryant Park, etc

I tried to make it an early night and get my #flatme settled.  It is hard when you are not at home (and you have plan for pre-race, race and post-race dress options.)

I didn’t know how COLD and windy it would be the next morning…

  • Sunday – Race Day – Winter Classic 5k – Got up bright and early (after a sleepless night) and took an Uber to the start. Made through all the COVID safety protocols and cautiously ran a hilly COLD 5k in Riverside Park. (Recap coming on Dec. 15.)

no watch and my slowest 5k in forever but I did it and it was worth it!!

I had done bag check so I could hang around after the race (and not freeze) and meet my friend Elizabeth. We spent hours in the park exploring parts that I rarely get to when I come to NYC.

don’t let those blue skies fool you. it was chilly.

Then, I walked umpteen blocks back to my hotel, changed my clothes and took more of the holiday sights of the city before getting an evening train home.

fifth avenue!! 18 miles walked today (counts as my long run??)

So happy to have decided to take a weekend away. No better place to get in the holiday spirit (even in a mask) than NYC.

This Coming Week – 

  • Monday –  rest day
  • Tuesday – run
  • Wednesday –  rest day. hair appt
  • Thursday – DAY OFF, run, hike
  • Friday – rest day, walk with friends
  • Saturday –  Long Run
  • Sunday – rest day, hiking

I am linking up with Kim and Deborah for

I encourage you to do the same. Grab the graphic, drop your link on the host blogs and play along! Please be sure to always comment on the HOST’s blogs, as well as visit and comment on as many other blogs as you can.

Happy Running! How is your running going? Any “real” races yet?  Have you decorated for the holidays yet? Do you usually go to NYC or a big to see all the decorations? Please share.

FRW2020: Good News and Bad News

Let’s start with the Bad News.

I have run the Freihofer’s Run for Women 5k every year since I started running.  It is obviously my FAVORITE race and I have never missed one – in all weather conditions, recovering from ankle surgery and even with a broken foot.

I have run this race (FRW) 12 times!!

And this year, I was named an ambassador!!

Well, I guess 13 is an unlucky number.

This year, the race has been cancelled!! 😦 😦

The Good News:

The Freihofer’s Run for Women has switched to a virtual 5k run for 2020.

That means that YOU do not have to travel to Albany, NY to run this race.

You can run the 5k no matter where you live!!

For only $25 or $20 with the code AMBSS5, you will receive:

  • 42nd annual virtual Freihofer’s Run for Women t-shirt & bib
  • A finisher’s certificate that can be printed out at home
  • Commemorative finishers’ medal
  • Coupons for Freihofer’s products
  • Automatic entry into Virtual 5k Sweepstakes with great prizes!

The t-shirts, medals and coupons will be mailed to participants the first week in June.

You will be getting exercise and supporting some great charities.

Please join me!!

For more info and to sign up, go to http://freihofersrun.com before April 30, 2020.

Here’s even better news:

As an Ambassador, I am giving away TWO free entries!!

To enter, click here:

I’ll be choosing TWO winners on April 23, 2020.


I’m linking here since it is Wednesday:

Formerly the Running Coaches’ Corner, it’s back with new co-hosts Coach Debbie RunsRunning on HappyConfessions of a Mother RunnerMile by MileRuns with Pugs, and Fauxrunner.

Happy Running! Will you be joining me and running the Virtual FRW 2020?