Empire State Building...

"Running is the greatest metaphor for life, because you get out of it what you put into it." Oprah Winfrey

I better take this stair climb a little more seriously then....

January 31, 2008

Dear Empire State Building Run-Up Applicant: As a reminder, race-day check in for the Men’s Invitational race will be on Tuesday, February 5, 2008 between 9:00 a.m. and 10:00a.m. Check in will be located on the second floor in the Visitor’s center. Please enter the building using the entrance on Fifth Avenue between 33rd and 34th street.

You will be running in the Men’s first heat and the race will begin promptly at 10:35 a.m.

Due to space limitations only one guest per runner will be permitted. Bibs, Guest Pass and T-shirt will be given to you at check-in. See you next week!

Good luck,LS


Running & Blog is suffering...too busy!

"My feeling is that any day I am too busy to run is a day that I am too busy. "John Bryant, deputy editor of the London Times, 1994

Uhhhh….many things come to mind when I just sit here with my blog open and wonder what has happened in the past week or so. I have a much needed way to back log my huge number of things that has gone on in my life that has taken tons of turns for the good. There is an interesting tad bit of information that has to do with the NY Post + Dating life (If you are smart or investigative, then you will put two and two together...or just wait...) and my first race of the year. But most of my time has been consumed by the countless amount of hours to get this first newsletter out for my running club and many things have taken a hit from that including my training for the Austin Marathon that is happening in what? Maybe 21 days or less….scary huh? Well, I have also taken the time to ease my pain in my left foot that had been bothering me since November…what I had though was some kind of Achilles tendonitis is just a mere soreness of my lower muscle in my calf. I’m guessing that this is caused by most of my running that I had consumed over the year of 2007, and have just stuck in my leg. I have been eagerly yearning for a good Charlie horse in my leg to tell me that my lactic acid is somewhat not dispersed and have received that yesterday, so that is confirmed that my leg is somewhat in good shape…(a whole lot of good pain…am I sick?) but yes, I say that because a good Charlie horse will loosen up the muscles a little better than having them just sit in there…(I may have the wrong mentality here…or just mentally insane…That and well I think I have the start ups of Planters Fasciitis and a high ankle bruise in my left foot once again…But I'll take this week off and then work it next week to be right for the marathon...

So I am resting my legs til Friday where I get to again go nuts for this weekend and run a whole lot of miles and well this weekend is going to be rough…but keep on the lookout for some back logs in the next couple of days…since I am almost done with the newsletter….got to make it perfect!

oh and I have to also train for that stair climb that is coming up....when is that...TUESDAY? oh dear god!


My "blind" date...

"There is no doubt that 'Sport For All' is a 20th-century movement of real significance. Other mass movements have oppressed where they intended to liberate. This movement liberates because it has an essentially individual basis. The choice of speed, route, distance, or company is entirely yours. "Sir Roger Bannister

It’s a rarity when I show signs of my personal life in my running blog, although I had to cancel my Monday night run because of this “date”. The story goes like this: I got this message from the editor from the NY Post one day on Myspace.com. Within it, I had thought that this was a hoax as of all messages from crazy people that randomly message you on myspace. Although, this was legit and the gal e-mailed me back with a questionnaire that I had to fill out and return.

I filled out the questionnaire and had fun with it (what did I have to lose?), where they got a taste of my goofy personality and fun life on words and style of whom I really am. Submitted it to her and the next day I took my picture at the New York Post headquarters and then waited…

4 months later, I was contacted by a different editor from the NY Post saying that she had taken over for the previous editor that messaged me 4 months ago and that she had found a particular person that would be right for me. I said GREAT! Although I had been extremely busy for the end of January and had hoped for the date to be in February. But, recently was picked and here is the unedited version of how I thought my date went…

Thank you and the NY Post for setting me up with A. I will try to recap the night as best as I could while it is still fresh in my mind and it was an amazing, fun time overall.

I had gotten off the subway to find the restaurant and walked about a block here and a block there. I had thought I had passed A. But then again, the gal was walking right by me and I really didn't know exactly what she looked like. I had glanced at the NY Post (Sunday's edition where I had found out that I was in the newspaper and she was showcased as well. One of my running friends had told me that I had been showcased (at first glance I definitely thought she was a very cute gal)...but before that it would have been just her name that I knew which was A)

So I finally arrived at Rayuela, where the ambiance of the restaurant had an amazing earth feel to the restaurant. I sat at the bar and ordered a glass of wine, being about 30 minutes early due to every subway that I had taken was earlier than expected. I had come straight from work and took out my sketch book to sketch a little at the bar: sketch a little, drink a little and just get my nerves a little loosened up. I had never been on a blind date before, not knowing much about a person but the tidbits of information from the newspaper. I was nervous, although both kinds of nervousness (is that even a word?): one being that I was just really scared (nervous) about what she would think of me, the other was a very excited (nervous) because I had seen her picture and I was very excited to meet up with her because her interests that she shared were very similar to my own. Hey she picked me here, so maybe she's feeling the same kind of nervousness' that I had been feeling as well...

Expecting her to be late, I keep to myself busy by talking to the bar tender and listen to my surroundings. As I hear people in the back of me coming in to eat, I hear my name being mentioned. This can't be a coincidence, so I turned around and there A was. She had caught me off guard being about 15 minutes than the expected date to begin. To my amazement she had been early but that was a very good thing and a huge bonus factor where no one in NYC is on time or even early for that matter...So right off the bat, she received bonus points. I collected my things and we shook hands (she put her hand out first, although I'm more of the hugger/kiss on the cheek type, but this was the first time I had met with her so I went with the handshake.) We relinquished our coats at the coat check and were escorted up the elegant wooden steps toward the 2nd floor. Candle lights, couches and an array of beautiful linens on the couches to the drapery, which separated customer to customer, the place was amazing architecturally. Since I am an architect, I looked a the interiors added a great touch to the environment and really accented the restaurant's aura.

I tried to add small talk as we walked up the stairs, just to get a better feel of what she was like. We were escorted toward the window and sat down in these two interesting looking J-shaped couch with a nice wooden table. I had tried to pull out the table a little to allow A to get into her seat, but she managed to squeeze on in before I could make that gentlemanly move. Since the restaurant had been a fusion Spanish cuisine, our conversation started with cultural foods to where we had traveled around the world to our family lives and our siblings...(since A had lived one semester in Spain and told me about her adventures and travels around Europe.)

We found that we really was not paying much attention to the menu at all and had asked for help from the waiter staff to assist us with good food recommendation. (This was sort of our "good" time out period where we took the time to get serious and order before we started up the conversation again.) We took a while to decide what to try out and eat. I had let A take the lead to plan our dinner from the array of food on the menu. Everything sounded amazing and she had done her research online on which foods were good to order. Also I had told her that I could eat anything and had been up to trying different things. We had decided to share the meal entirely to just get a good mix of different foods and dishes that the restaurant had to offer.

We felt like celebrities though when the PR, of the restaurant (HC, I think her name was) came to introduce her to us. We both introduced ourselves and seeing the reaction of how A introduced herself, her presence and her composure, her personality and expression, it was really well played out. I was very impressed and knew that she had grown up with quite the cultured family. We felt pretty loved and special like some famous person and some drinks were ordered for us on the house. Our conversation resumed to travelled places again, interests and our jobs. Many of these conversational pieces we found that questions led to other questions of trying to find out about each other and life stories, she had a very interesting personality and a whole lot of things that she had gone through, I had gone through as well. Our conversation was good. She was very respectable and she always apologized after interrupting, which I didn't mind at all because of the intrude level that allowed more interest in stories and questions and so on and so forth. I felt really comfortable and I had forgotten that I had been on this date with A, whom I had just met. She kept really great eye contact with me whenever I was talking and I thought that was amazing because she was listening to me and at times I lost my thought of concentration by looking within her eyes. She had great features and amazing eyes. I enjoyed the intelligent conversation that literally we were just talking for 3 hours and not even knowing how the time had flown by. We talked about growing up, our childhood, which we were both very surprised about finding that we had such interesting similarities: Growing up in Westchester to having a loving family and siblings to running to her being an editors in high school to even her father's occupation was similar to my own father's as well. It was quite shocking really at first, although we had many similarities that it was almost like looking into a mirror. Similarities are good.

As the food arrived, we allowed each other to eat and trade off stories, the only dull moments were when we both at different times had to go to the bathrooms, which she had checked out first and told me that I had to check them out as well, knowing that I was an architect...and she was correct! The bathrooms had an amazing feel to everything of the restaurants aura and the design was amazing. Having also a chef quality to myself, I enticed her with some of my knowledge in cooking and how I understood the chef's pallet in all of the dishes what we had ordered. I guess that's where the food network comes into play and my own knowledge from my parents and grandparents teaching me how to cook...which she said she wasn't much of a cook at home, and who needs one in NYC.

The food was amazing with it's textures, elegance and lightness of citrus flavors and ingredients that the chef had used really made the food powerful, but suddle. We met the chef afterwards as we were leaving and we definitely complimented him on his use different entrees from vegetables to seafood and the amazingness of the arroz con pollo where the chicken was so tender. Food was fabulous, company was fabulous and I really couldn't ask for a better date!

As we shared two different kinds of deserts, our taste buds had defiantly a great feel of the night and we told each other to try out different things while we shared our thoughts of what we had been tasting. It was a great date all together and sharing different dishes, different conversations about our lives and experiences to a person we have not met before in a "blind" date couldn't work out to being more perfect because of her personality, similarities and pure beauty.

The one thing that I had though was funny was the fact that she had shared her thoughts on how I had been picked by her. She told me that she had been discussing this with her mother and that her mother had been worried about how these "blind" dates had been set up. It's typical amongst (Asian) parents to be very worried and I understood for her being her daughter going on a date with a person that she does not know and how there are many weird people in NYC that something could happen. Her mother was very worried, so she told me that she had picked me because I was a "safe" pick and I looked like a very caring and kind person...and that's how she picked me, which really assured her mother as well I guess.

In all, we left the restaurant 3 hours later and hadn't looked at our watches during the time that we had been in the restaurant. We thankfully thanked the chef, the owner (H) and HC, the PR person, and told them that we had an amazing time and would gladly come back. I had a volunteering event (which had to do with a survey of homeless people) that I had to go to afterwards and told her about it during dinner and offered if she wanted to go as well, since the conversation of her volunteering for events in college was so dear to her. But she told me that she was tired from the past weekend of many events and that she had to get to work early. So, I wanted to make sure that she went home ok, so I went a round about way to my volunteering event and was a tad bit late...but it was all worth it as we still chatted in the subway waiting for the train and even in the subway as well.

Our date ended when I had to get off at my train stop and she had a straight shot home, so she was alright. (which concerned me because it was a late night and I wanted to make sure that she went home ok...) So this morning I had e-mailed her (since we had exchanged e-mails and phone numbers) and made sure we would definitely stay in touch...even making some plans for the next following week. Overall, this date was one of the best dates I had ever been on with the company, food, atmosphere, and I couldn't have asked for a better night...hopefully she felt the same way!

Overall how you felt about the person: Potential romantic interest, Fun & Attractive
On a scale of 1 to 4, how would you rate the date: 4...
(although in your meet o meter: "I'll die if you don't call" - is a bit extreme for me, but it definitely rates it up there...)

Oh and when the camera man came, she was shy and didn't working it that much...although the request was somewhat intense for a first date...we got some good shots. She wanted to make sure that her picture came out ok, which is understandable. She has nothing to worry about I had though, she's beautiful and smile, have fun and just go with it...I enjoyed it and she was having fun.

Oh and as they cameraman was taking shots (the people behind us, were looking to see what was going on. They asked us afterwards if they knew us from somewhere or if we were celebrities or something, although we gave them the honest truth and told them we were doing this...which we though was funny, so that's the story with the whole celebrity deal...


Racing again…

"In running, it doesn't matter whether you come in first, in the middle of the pack, or last. You can say, 'I have finished.' There is a lot of satisfaction in that. "Fred Lebow

So this weekend was my first race back again, although I was suppose to go slow since I had ran 19 miles the day before and I was suppose to pace my friend, JM. This didn’t happen due to me not asking her where to meet up, and there had been thousands of runners out there for the first of five half marathons in the Grand Prix race. Although, I did look for her and I found many other Flyers before the race. My idea was to catch up to ST, who is also on my team, whom is a really fast female flyer. I lined up amongst the 8 minute milers and I knew that she was ahead of me at the 7 minute mile pace. It had been 2 years ago where I found myself locked up in the same atmosphere not knowing anything about racing or anything about clubs or even half marathons let alone and far from marathons…

2 years ago, I had set out on just completing my first few races in Central Park. 2 years ago, I had not even ran more than a simple 5k…and my first race was a half marathon to only complete to say that I had done a half marathon. Let me re-iterate, I’m still a beginner in running distance and all I know really how to do is sprint.

Ok, so the race began, simple 2 loops around Central Park and I had to catch up to my pace. The weather was pretty perfect compared to the year past which was in the teens and the wind made everyone think about hyperthermia. But this year was semi-cold and still you can feel that your times definitely are effected by this factor. I sometimes wonder why I do these winter races or even why I even run during the winter time. It’s just so easy to say that I will not be running tonight, I can stay home on the couch, watch TV on my couch in my WARM apartment. What are we doing out here?

Ok, so 2 loops pass and I am thinking when am I going to be over. I finally catch up to ST and I am exhausted, although I pass her because in my mind I am thinking that I can get a PR…but in the end. I didn’t and it was ok…another race in the books, another day, another tomorrow…


The dating game...

"Obstacles are those frightening things that become visible when we take our eyes off our goals." Henry Ford

To give you a better idea of my LONG weekend...I got an e-mail back from one of my teammates telling me that Ihad been featured in the NY POST! Whahhoooo....well I knew that I had been picked by a lady to go out with on a blind date, but had no clue what she had looked like....and she picked me...
my only question is....why?


January 27, 2008 -- This silly, yet ambitious woman needs a man who won't mind if she takes charge. A self-professed over-planner, she'll happily organize nights out and weekend trips. He justs needs to expect the unexpected!

Mike, 25 associate producer

Describe yourself: I'm a goofy, outgoing dork who cares a lot about family and friends, all the while being very driven by work. Of course, I still know how to have fun, even if I wet my pants. That's right, I went there.
Ideal date: If you have that instant, unexplainable, amazing connection with someone, no matter where you are, it's an "ideal" date.
What's sexy? I think it's sexy when a girl knows how to play guitar hero. What! Wha!
What would your mom say about you? "Mike is very caring and kindhearted with a great sense of humor." That's an actual quote from my mom, I swear. I asked her to answer this.

Jonas, 30 account executive
Describe yourself: I'm from the Midwest, but I'm not a rural redneck. I'm incredibly loyal to my closest friends, but I admit, at times, I am a little bit overprotective.
What's attractive? I'm looking for woman who's petite, athletic and makes me laugh.
Ideal date: First we'd go for a drink at a cool bar, then dinner in the Meatpacking District.
Best quality: I'm pretty funny.
Worst date: Dead silence.
Guilty pleasure: Taco Bell.

Brian, 26 architect
Describe yourself: I have an artsy, liberal, carefree personality. I love to cook and experiment with food, and I'm athletic, too. I have a work hard, play hard attitude.
What's attractive: I'm looking for an athletic girl who loves to work out. I like a girl who's fun and open-minded, with a laid-back personality.
What's sexy? A woman who's smart and confident about her looks.
Deal breakers: I run and exercise every day, so smoking is a turn-off. She can have it all, but if she smokes, it would always bother me in the back of my mind.


Spirit of the Marathon

"You can't win them all - but you can try." Babe Didrikson Zaharias

I am the Producer on a documentary film called Spirit of the Marathon.

The film will be out in over 450 theaters for one night only on January 24th, 2008 at 7:30pm (local time).

The film follows 6 runners (4 amateur and 2 elite athletes including Olympian Deena Kastor) as they take on the challenge of training for and attempting a marathon. Spirit of the Marathon also features interviews with legendary marathoners such as Bill Rodgers, Alberto Salazar, Frank Shorter, Joan Benoit Samuelson and many others telling us the back story of the marathon from the Greek legend to the lore of Boston to the history of women running. The film premiered at the Chicago International Film Festival where it won the Audience Award and is now going to be shown in a theater near you. I've attached more information on how to find a theater and for ticket information. Or you can go to www.fathomevents.com.

We would really appreciate if you could let your runner's know about the first ever feature length film on the marathon. It's sure to be something they'll love.

If you'd like to check out a trailer, go to www.marathonmovie.com. Also, I've attached a PDF copy of the movie poster in case you want to put it on your website with an announcement.

Thanks for all your help and Please let me know if you have any questions.

Gwendolen Twist-Producer-

Spirit of the Marathonwww.marathonmovie.com


Sweating in the cold?

"When I first started running, I was so embarrassed, I'd walk when cars passed me. I'd pretend I was looking at the flowers. "Joan Benoit Samuelson

How is this possible? I know literally this is possible although I really don’t know how it really is possible that my arms are frozen and my body is exerting sweat and heat and how am I not regulated in my body? Quite strange actually…it mind boggles me the fact that you are sweating, the outside air is freezing, you are working your body to sweat, and then you get hot…but your fore arms feel like they are frozen and can’t move….uh! it’s an utter unbalanced equilibrium that your body goes through…

Ok, the worst is when you go for a run, go into a store and then you are hot in the store, you go back outside and then you are cold…colder and then wow you are freezing…running becomes hard again to start back up and you can potentially get frost bite and potentially also get hyperthermia…now what fun is that? Seriously, why does our bodies do that, why can’t we adapt to our environment and then not overheat and sweat! It’s very festinating…although painful, but still interesting to know!

Play it right…be safe and be careful…


The Inns and outs…

"If you want to become the best runner you can be, start now. Don't spend the rest of your life wondering if you can do it. "Priscilla Welch, Masters Marathon Great

OK…so I was discussing this with ST on our weekly run that we always run together on and to say the least, it has to be written. So, putting on your tights, you have to put one leg in and then the other one in roll them up to your knees and then pursue wearing them up…or how I do it is that I put on leg in, pull it up to my knees, then put my other leg in, then put that one up to my knees and then pursue the rest of the tights to go on up my leg…is it that difficult to put on tights or am I just looking into it too much? I mean you can’t put it on like you are putting on a pair of loose jeans…I don’t know how gals do this every day or even wear a tight pair of jeans! Boy they look smokin’ though, but still a pain in the butt…ha no pun in tended…

Ok, so getting them off is quite the process as well…you have to roll down your pants to your knees, take it down to your calves and then pull…then the tights are reversed allowing your ankles only the ankles to be hung onto and then they pop off and spring free and then the tights are in reversed…and then you do the other leg….it’s quite the process…although ST was saying that there is another way where you can eliminate the spring free feeling and the none reversal of having to pull your tights inside out back over to the right way…either way, I’m still a beginner at these things, but they surely have helped and I have fully allowed myself to say that these were quite the good investment.

Tights week now over…until another story on tights…we’ll see if this will be discussed later on.



"Act like a horse. Be dumb. Just run." Jumbo Elliott

Brr…Coldness once again and I am back from South Carolina. So I join my usual Monday night group run on a very cold Monday night. I get back from the airport, having switched my flights and airports to make it back to NYC earlier, having no concept of making it back to my usual Monday night crew.

The usual suspects are there, (JM, DG, Julie, Jose and Stebo) but yes, we ran our usual 6 mile loop around the west side and then back around.

To make things more interesting: We continue Tight’s week with one more story…



"You have to have confidence in your ability, and then be tough enough to follow through." Rosalynn Carter

Calves hurt because of the surf, sand and sea…but also it’s raining outside and didn’t get a chance to run…but that’s ok. Rest day today, not the usual Saturday morning run of long runs, but that’s ok. Resting is helping my body, although drinking this weekend is not…

& that is the end Tights week since I really was not wearing tights in South Carolina....


South Carolina…

"Thus I urge you to go on to your greatness if you believe it is in you. Think deeply and separate what you wish from what you are prepared to do." Percy Cerutty

So being down in South Carolina, I had missed my Thursday night group run to visit my sister and watch her graduate and defend her thesis. I ventured a 8-10 hour trip from visiting two airports – JFK and LaGuardia to travel to South Carolina because of the weather delays and switching of flights to go to South Carolina directly. The ticket counter agent was really nice and had hooked me up to switch my flights saying that since my first plane out of JFK would have been delayed to stopover at Atlanta, I would have not have made it for my connection flight to South Carolina, not even knowing my top speeds in sprinting ability.

So I finally made it to LaGuardia airport in plenty of time for my flight out, although the direct flight had been delayed as well adding to my time to get in to be at midnight. My sister’s boyfriend had picked me up, because my sister’s presentation was the next day and she had to get some sleep…so I felt guilty, but everything came out ok. She had woken up anyways and greeted me for a while and then we headed to bed.

The next day’s presentation for my sister went ok, describing the bacteria and algae that she had been studying for 7 years to go for her PHD candidacy, she did well. Although, she was worried and frustrated in the end, she definitely passed with major revisions that she has to do. In the end, it’s the final product that finishes that really is the main determinant, so she has 4 weeks to finish up her stuff and finally be done.

So…we went to a reception where all of her friends had gathered to celebrate. She still felt as though she had not accomplished enough that she had wanted to accomplish. So having my sister at my side, we both went to the beach to run. The surf had been frigid and the sand pretty hard, but I was not going to give up an opportunity to not run barefoot. We ran for about 2 miles and then I ran for about a mile more leaving my sister to rethink things a little on her own…as I ran for another mile and turned back. The surf as amazing and I took a few pictures of the beautiful sunset, sand, and my shoes.

The Boys…

"Everyone has limits on the time they can devote to exercise, and cross-training simply gives you the best return on your investment - balanced fitness with minimum injury risk and maximum fun." Paula Newby-Fraser

Continuing Tight week, let’s talk about the makers of tights to guys and the system of going to the bathroom. Note: when you go to the bathroom or need to go to the bathroom, go before you put on your tights (if you were a guy)…or else you will have a big problem.

See the tights are so tight that your boys get a little tightened up when you are on the can, where your legs are tightened up together and “your boys” are literally nuts within the nut cracker. This happens when you are sitting down. When you are standing up, you can not just pull your thing out…you are going to have to pull your tights down all the way down to your knees and then pee.

Crazy, crazy…maybe they need to have a flap to allow you to go…what will they think of next? Or better yet, what will I think of next….


Fast runners, slow runners all the same…

"Spirit...has fifty times the strength and staying power of brawn and muscle." Unknown

Ok...TO answer my question of faster runners to slower runners, from the previous blog earier this week...

Ok…to state the obvious…"Faster" runners can run with the "slower" runners, but "slower" runners can not run with "Faster" runners…Obviously….but not saying that I am one of the "Faster" runners at all, because well some may say that I am just saying this, but I am really just a beginner in the whole distance thing. I am still learning how to facilitate my VO2 max at certain points of the race. Running is an art of pacing and how I expend my energy at certain times during the race. I am trying to find a way to increase my speed for a longer duration of time during the race. Of course, I know what you all are saying, you ran a marathon at such as such of a pace…although I have done that, I am still trying to master the marathon… (I don’t think you can…unless you are a professional runner to know how to run the race) Each distance is very tough to gauge and I am still trying to find the way to run a distance race…from a regular mile to a marathon.

Although to say the truth, some "Faster" runners can not run "slow"…in many ways, a runner is use to their own stride of running. If a stride is lost, more energy is expended within their own running style. Since “slower runners” are running with shorter strides, slower leg turnover and expending more energy – which they are use to and comfortable with. For a "Faster" runner to run at the “slower” runners pace, their form is different, stride is shorter, turn over is slower and in the end, the faster runner is definitely spending more energy and gets more tired going at that pace than at their own.

Funny huh?


The Battle of the bulge…

"Everyone in life is looking for a certain rush. Racing is where I get mine." John Trautmann

Well, in all tight positions when you’re a guy and you have male parts to you and you have tights on…like the men in tights, your gonna have something show and well some more than most will have a bulge. See…females don’t have this problem where they really don’t have anything down there to show, but the boys, yes they show. What do guys do to solve this problem? Well…some, like me, would wear shorts over their tights to hide the appearance of the bulge. Others (usually the older men) would just go out there and show-em’ what they got…they are proud of it and they are not afraid to show it…

Ok…now I got nothin’ else to say about this subject….signing off….


Speed work…

"The will to win means nothing without the will to prepare." Juma Ikangaa

For the first time, I had gone to the NY Flyers speed workout. We meet up at RFK school at 6:30pm and I have heard that if you miss out by a minute, they are gone. No one waits and you really need to know where the location is at just to catch up. Although there are quite a few people that are regulars and there are quite a few people that just go occasionally from time to time. Also depends on if you are injured or not as well or are busy…

So speed work in the winter is absolutely brutal. The cold gets into your lungs and well the procedures that we were doing was to maintain our form, address hills (going up and going down) and movement at the right time. I do hope that this addition will help me within my marathon training, although I do not think that it is as crucial as I need to rest, but I shall see. The basic timing within the training is short, but the workout is exhausting and when you go all out and expend yourself it should work. The toughness of the exhausting sprints up and down the hills with 1 minute to rest (which really helped) tells a story about our speed of our team. For the most part I was in the lead group, allowed the members of my team to start off strong and then turned it on at the hills which I excel in. After 8 full sets (up and down) we finished with some drills and then headed back to the gym. Frozen lungs do not work well with a slight case of ashma which I have been known to have…but that’s a different story.

My schedule is subject to change, although I may vary from week to week where I may go to speed work every other week to vary my muscles and change my workouts accordingly. So Tuesdays are my regular days off usually within my usual schedule that I had before…

The schedule before_
Mondays: Monday group run (downtown) = 6 Miles
Tuesdays: Off
Wednesdays: Run up to Central Park (3), run with the Wednesday Group (6) and run back down to my work (3) = 12 Miles
Thursday: Same run as Wednesday although with the Thursday Group = 12 miles
Fridays: Off
Saturdays: Home to Central Park (3) Central Park Group Run (6) run before (6 - Sometimes) and run back home (3) = 12-18 Miles…
Sundays: Off or a 6 mile loop (central park or downtown)

The New Schedule_
Monday group run (downtown) = 6 Miles
Tuesdays: Speed work
Wednesdays: Off
Thursday: Same run as Wednesday although with the Thursday Group = 12 miles
Fridays: Off
Saturdays: Home to Central Park (3) Central Park Group Run (6) run before (6 - Sometimes) and run back home (3) = 12-18 Miles…
Sundays: 6 mile loop (central park or downtown)

Although I am not too happy about my schedules changing because of the perfect days of rest and workout days that allow my muscles to recuperate, I will have to definitely join the gym now to somehow do cross training on Wednesdays and Fridays (maybe depending on if I am to go out or not and Sundays are definitely another day that may turn into cross training days. All I do know is that working out will get my upper body in gear and basically get me in gear to be more toned work on my core.

Tight – Boxer briefs or tighty whites?

"Big occasions and races which have been eagerly anticipated almost to the point of dread, are where great deeds can be accomplished." Jack Lovelock
OK…So there was a question in one of the electoral elections for the NY Flyers was asking the men that had been not been run against anyone. The question of…wearing…boxer or briefs…?

Now, the real question is: Boxer Briefs or whitty tighty when you are gearing up wearing tights. See as a beginner of wearing tights, females can wear their regular panties or thongs or what not of whatever they do wear underneath their tights (All female undergarments are form fitting as well so they go nicely with the whole tight scheme of things). Men on the other hand (those who wear underwear) wear boxers (loose fitting), boxer briefs, or briefs (tighty whities). As a beginner I had tried to put my boxers on when wearing tights and well they just don’t go. It looks as though you are crumpling shorts into a tight space…and the weggy to go with it…wheew! But then there is another solution…and dare I say it maybe some guys do, do it, but maybe some guys go commando underneath there? Maybe they think it’s like the underwear shorts that runners usually run with (think men’s swimwear with the lining)…

Ok…so that meant that I had to go either the boxer brief direction or the briefs direction…and certainly I was going toward the boxer brief direction…

So no ladies, sorry to disappoint... I don’t go commando underneath my tight tights, although I do wear a colorful (red tones) of boxer briefs…come on gotta go with my team colors here!


A tight week…

"If you win through bad sportsmanship, that's no real victory." Babe Didrikson Zaharias

Ok folks, for all those whom read my blog…daily? Weekly? Monthly?

My gosh, who really reads this rubbish anyways? I mean seriously, it’s about me and my life is pretty boring, nothing too exciting here and to say the least it’s all about running! Wheew! So move on…or not…either way, you’ll get a kick out of these this week…

Ok…let’s get down to business, this week I honor the cold weather back from the warm week that we had last week with the very long awaited blog of tights…or rather running tights….or rather not one day…but a whole week of blogs about running tights. Ready for that? Hweew…

Ok, so I begin my adventures with the actual buying of running tights. I have never bought tights before and never even have worn tights. I have looked at females and their tights and damn they look damn good…hey it’s better than looking at their pony-tails and gives an additive feature of motivation to running during the winter. Anyways, people have told me or I have read that tights are a better fit to your body and they “hug” better. Also psychologically you may feel faster because they hug so well and your zipping through in and out everywhere.

But tights to feel better, they do hug better and for the first time though you have to get use to them. They are better than wind pants because wind pants allows air to go through and then you have air in-between your body and your pants. Tights are skin tight and they allow your muscles to have an “extra” skin allowing them to heat to stay within the body and does not allow air to pass through and are almost wind resistant.

Although to be perfectly honest with you, I wasn’t too comfortable at first wearing tights in the first place. It takes some time to get use to and well…they are nice…speedy and well…a very nice to oogle!

Ok…so not only did I buy one pair of running tights, but two without even have worn one before. I got this one that is from Hind and it’s all black, on-sale from Jack Rabbits when they had their all out winter sale. Then I got this other one that I had been eyeing from last year and I finally bit the bullet because I heard some good reviews about it…but it’s quite expensive: CW-X Stability tights which has the same material as skiers wear.

At first I got the Stability CW-X, I felt as though this was too thin, but what did I know about tights. I never worn them before? I figured in my mind that whenever I would wear tights though that it would probably be below 40 degrees…my legs don’t usually get that cold. So I bought a pair at Paragon, didn’t like the thinness factor and returned them…went for the other design that they had which was the insulated version with the same technology and well bought those at New York Running Company (my new favorite running store at the Time Warner Building built by SOM at Columbus Circle).

The funny part is when I purchased them at Paragon, I received a 10% discount for being a Road Runner’s member. When I returned them, later on that I found out, she gave me the full refund back on the tag…so I got some money back from that. The insulated pair was more expensive and well I really got the insulated version for the same price!! Amazing!

Anyways…get ready for some crazy questions and some unleashed technology about my tights!

Have a “tight” week….


Monday night run…training and conversational...

"We all have dreams. In order to make dreams come into reality, it takes an awful lot of determination, dedication, self-discipline and effort." Jesse Owens

So Monday night drew the usual suspects, (DG, JG, AS and Jose) although there was another new person out there named Julie, whom as a friend of a regular. She decided to join us for our regularly scheduled run.

So we stretched, introduced ourselves and then started out. I, being on my serious training schedule had ran ahead to try to do the piers on the west side to add some extra mileage and to meet up with my group as they come around the bend. This way I get in my speed work and serious training before settling down and jog with the group.

This is the difference between actually training and conversational running.

  • Training adheres to more learning about yourself. You tend to do your long mileage, you tend to focus more and you tend to know and understand your body a little more when you run alone. Yes, it’s lonesome, although you have no distractions and know yourself…mentally you are more prepared.
  • In a conversational pace, time is not of the essence. You are there to have fun, you are not worried about your pace, your time, when you are finishing and how you finish up. The conversation is keeping you busy and the focus is concentrated on your conversation, which is what it is there for.

I am not saying that neither of these are good or bad, it’s just the difference. The difference between, what I feel as though runners experience through their runs…(you may think otherwise, although this is my blog and well that’s your opinion and this is mine…) I feel as though if you want to really tackle something you can have a conversational pace with one person as a training buddy, but a group…that’s entirely different. And don’t get me wrong, I love my group running because it’s a difference between focusing and speed workouts than a nice leisurely run (also what you need…)

So…after my sprint workout, I meet up with my group as they stroll down the west side and the cold drizzle is plopping down on your face. AS had a rest room break and I decided to try to race her while she was in the loo…but she won and I was no where close in finishing my pier before she had gotten out and the group had started up again…THEY LEFT ME! It’s ok, I’m use to that.

We did our usual route and then Davey came out and blurted that he direct words, no joke, “gotta go potty”…all of us were cracking up, but he was trying to find one near the view of the Statue of Liberty…I told him to wait and go at the Winter Garden which was coming up…So we stop at the anti-freeze water fountain (all along the west side there are anti-freeze water foundations (quite ingenious!) and then onto the Winter Garden, where Julie also went with Davey…

So…after they were done, through and over with, we continued our run. Our conversations ranged from non-showing to marathons to how your day went…Runners conversations are pretty funny if you had not heard what we have to say…we really talk about anything and there is no boundary.

As the group pulled away, I was left with Julie, which was fine with me because within our group we leave no one behind and especially we want to feel as though our group can accommodate any runner of any speed. I mean the faster men are harder to get because the faster you go the fewer people can run with you….the slower people are a whole lot easier since you can get a faster runner (those whom can accommodate – some faster runners can not run slow…I can tell you why in another blog, but that’s the nature of the beast) So we strolled on back toward where we had began as the mists of the night from the rain settled, but still was raining. I found out a while lot about Julie and hope that she comes back, but that’s the nature of new people…it’s great to chat with them…

Empire State!

"You must do the thing which you think you cannot do." Eleanor Roosevelt

So...I received an e-mail today from the NYRR by Laura Sala saying that I have been chosen to run in this years Empire State Building run...

here are the details and the letter that I had received:

Dear Empire State Building Run-Up Applicant:

Congratulations! You have been selected to be a part of the 2008 NYRR Empire State Building Run-Up, scheduled to take place on Tuesday, February 5, 2008. Once again, this years Run-Up attracted a record number of applicants from all over the world. You will have the opportunity to compete with some of the most diverse and well-trained athletes in the field.

We have included some important race-day information, so please take the time to read below. Also, please make sure to check our website, www.nyrr.org prior to race day for any last-minute changes.

Race-day check in will take place only on Tuesday, February 5, from 9:00a.m. to 10:00a.m. You must enter the Empire State Building from the main entrance on fifth Avenue between 33rd and 34th streets. There will be a security check point, so please be sure to bring photo ID. At race check-in you will receive your race number, Champion Chip and t-shirt. You must securely attach your chip to your shoe in order to be scored; it will be removed on the 86th floor after the Run-Up.

Guest passes will be available at race check-in. You will be given ONLY ONE guest pass per runner (Anyone?) , due to space limitations. Your guest will be directed to the post race ceremony area and CANNOT stay on the ground floor for the start of the race or wait at the finish line. All runners will quickly return to the post-race ceremony area after completion of the Run-Up, where all guests will be waiting.

Invitational races start at exactly 10:30a.m. Women will start first, followed by the men’s first heat at 10:35am and the men’s second heat at 10:40am.

Seeding numbers will be assigned according to the times indicated on your application. Low-numbered runners line up in the front, and higher numbers will be in the back. It is very important that you cooperate. You must run in the heat that you are assigned to or you will be disqualified. Failure to abide by all race procedures will result in your disqualification, and your application will be automatically rejected next year.

Course Description

There are 1576 steps, for a total of 1,050 feet in elevation. The stair width is 40 inches and the length is 7.5 inches. Each story has two flights of stairs, separated by a landing. The length of a flight varies and there are six different flight patterns on the ascent.

Water stations will be available along the corridors on the 20th and 65th floors where you will change stairwells. Please watch your footing at these locations to avoid slipping.

Passing during the race may be done on either side, though it is customary to pass on left. The runner being passed must not block as a safety precaution.

Stopping: If you wish to drop out of the race, look for signs in the stairwells that will indicate a floor at which you can exit. Once you exit, take an elevator to the ground floor and then use the appropriate elevator to the 80th floor observatory for medical attention, if necessary. Baggage may be picked-up from the post-race area.

Finish: You will exit the stairwell on the 86th floor and you cross

diagonally through the door to the outdoor terrace. You will run a quarter of the way around the terrace to the finish. Tape on the floor will mark the course.

Refreshments and a Post-race awards ceremony will follow the race. Athletes will be directed to the specified location. You can claim your baggage there and results will be posted when available. Results will also be posted on the NYRR website (www.nyrr.org).

Good Luck,

New York Road Runners
2008 NYRR Empire State Building Run-Up Selection Committee

I think I have been chosen amongst the few people to run this race (this is a selected amount of people and an application process, where people usually try multiple amounts of times to qualify for this race) because I had ran in the Urbanathon and my leg was to run the stairs in 7 world trade center, so I had previous experience in this type of a race. Although this is the Empire State Building we are talking about and this will be brutal, but a once in a lifetime experience.

Oh...and I plan to go to work right after the race...(should I walk back to the office, run or take the subway?) ok, maybe I'm not that crazy!



"What makes a great endurance athlete is the ability to absorb potential embarrassment, and to suffer without complaint." Lance Armstrong

"Why are you running so much? Why are you training? What's your next marathon?"

Countless amount of questions that are pretty easy to answer in many ways...

I needed to do the mileage to see where exactly I am at and either take the Austin Marathon seriously to reach my goal for the year in getting a sub 3 (and being called a sub 3 marathon runner - Although really it's just the glory of it, you have to only run it one time and you're honored forever in my mind) Or is the Austin Marathon just going to be a training run before the Boston Marathon?

I know that if I was to go for it, this would be my chance because out of the five that I will be doing this year (Austin, Boston, Steamboat (Co), San Francisco and NYC)... Boston is for fun, NYC may be for race , but tough course (and I would love it to be for fun again because I had such a great time this year), Steamboat is in altitude (don’t exactly know how I will fair out in that, since I trained in Altitude in Colombia and for every mile you did, it seemed like you did double that amount...) and San Francisco (which I just signed up for and heard that it was a rather hilly race course) and Austin (is another hilly race course as well...) So Austin, San Francisco and NYC are the only ones to reach my goal this year with TOUGH courses…no flat courses like last year: Chicago and Philadelphia.

So, to answer all those question in one answer…I’m training to train right now and respect the sub 3 marathon race. I need to start putting my game face on and really think deep, hard and understand that I can pull it off. There is a difference between knowing you can do it and having the confidence in doing it and in actuality you really need both. But knowing that you can do it you have a little more confidence in yourself and you need that at the end of the race course. You lose confidence in that race or lose focus and your done.

In the Georgia marathon that I had started out last year with, I had lost confidence in myself and finishing to qualify for Boston…what happened? I came close, missed my qualifying time for Boston by 43 seconds…in Philadelphia, I did the same thing…I said that my dreams of breaking a 3 hour marathon would be in the future and that it was a fun race…I respect that, but this year is a new year and when I ran that race and came so close…I doubted myself and gave up a little in the end and came up short…result, missed becoming a sub 3 marathoner by 45 seconds. Seconds is a large deal…in short races…and you would think that in a marathon seconds are not really measured as much as minutes are because of pace…and this is true and should be true…although you knock off 2 seconds for each mile ran during the marathon that I had run in Philadelphia and you got your sub 3 marathonscary huh?

That’s right folks…Time to put on the game face…for now at least…until you see me cracking a smile here and there and then you will know…seriousness may be down the drain…to live another day…but most importantly as in all my marathons the same game plan…the camera will stay!

The LONG run day…

"I prefer to remain in blissful ignorance of the opposition. That way I'm not frightened by anyone's reputation." Ian Thompson
Getting out of bed this morning I had expected to either do two things:

1) get up early (6am) go up to Central Park (3) do two loops (12) before the race, take pictures and then back down to go home (3) equaling up to 18 miles…


2) wake up moderately early 7:30 am, go up to the park (3) do one loop (6) and then make it back in time to take some pictures of my teammates in the park and then back down again (3)…total: 12…

with the addition of doing a double (meaning to go back out or work two shifts (one day and one night) where you would make up your miles to equal to 20 miles…

So…being a Saturday morning, I woke up at 6 am, went back to bed saying why I am up this early! Decided to just to doubles instead…and finally got out of bed. I need to take my runs a little more seriously now since I had taken the whole month of December off to heal and basically playing “ketchup” (oh sorry, I meant catch up) for training. The usual 3 months of training turns into two months and trying to find where I am at in my own program is tough to know exactly where I am at and where to place my 20 miler in. (I care not to say that I need to “make up” miles due to me believing that this is untrue for all runners to NOT make up any miles they have missed…so I am not making up miles, I am simply trying to get some good workouts in with a decent pace for each of these)

Getting ready for my run Saturday morning, you know when it’s going to be a rough day when your mind is fuzzy and you are putting your shoes on before you even put on your socks!

Uh! It’s going to be a long day of running…

I pack my bag (camera, photo zoom lens, dry clothes, and 2 banana’s and a granola bar and a late Christmas gift that I was going to stop off at a friends place, JT to drop off, water…anything else? Yeah, my pack surmounted to being about 5lbs…)

So, I leave my apartment with a banana in hand, keeping all of my gear in check and then heading up on a semi-chill morning where I beat the sun up as the sun was peering out from the east streets. It’s so beautiful in the mornings in NYC, where no one is around and you can just run here and there throughout the blocks…I headed up toward Central Park, winding my ways though Park Ave and looking through some of the expensive car dealerships such as Ferrari. I zoom up and make my ways through the park…one loop. I struggle, the hills seem larger and by the time I reach Harlem hill my legs are exhausted. (my legs have been exhausted this week due to a long 12 on Wednesday night and a long 12 on Thursday night with…volleyball right after…) So therefore my legs were shot and had to keep my mind in check to get through the hills…good mental preparation for marathons, I feel since marathons are based on huffing and puffing and exhaustion…gotta love that.

So after I was through with that, I meet up with BS or PB-C at the engineer’s gate which he had been stretching getting ready for the race…I walk over with him and spot some other Flyers that I know and wave. We then meet up with AG or Runner26, whom doesn’t hear us and we scream to stop her on her jog around the park and slowly making it out towards the west side to meet up with JM and her crafty west side run…which PB-C was going to meet up with as well and ron-de-vu at Chelsea markets after the race.

I then run towards the start of the race to catch any flyers there that are getting ready for the 5 mile race…I do catch a few, AS and HP, who are always running together…then as the race started, I had to sprint down towards my sunny spot and stump which I usually am at high above to see any Flyers to take their pictures…I beat the lead pack and gear up…and cheer the many front runners on…wheew…and then my teammates arrive one after the other and then the main pack and then the desolate trickle of the back pack…

Wheew that was over…and about an hour later….Call up my friend to meet up at her apartment on the East side about a mile over…drop off her package, then decided after the conversation with PB-C and Runner26 that I would join the crafty laid out route of JM. So I run from the east to the west side, cutting across 59th Street toward the West side highway and then down towards Chelsea Piers. (remember, all this with 5 lbs in my back the entire distance…)

Make it down to Chelsea piers and by this time it was 11am…so I have been doing stuff since 7:30am and was BEAT! I was starving as well and was glad to see all of my Flyer friends: JM, Runner26, ES, PB-J and JG with “C” on hand…(C- meaning we have always heard about the infamous C, but never met her in person and thought she never existed…)

In all…with 5 lbs on my back….starting from 7:30 am to 11 am…I did a total of 17 miles…

And it doesn’t end….
Knowing that I had to do double sessions I nap during the day after I get back to my apartment…at 5pm, I start over again…my legs felt fresh and my route was to go over the Brooklyn Bridge to JM’s place to pick up a book…but that changed when I met up with her at a coffee shop instead and stayed within the city…a total of 5 miles…

So in all….a grand total of twenty – two….yup…sicko!


“Thinking Green!”

"Training can get on a man's nerves. There is no profit or use in denying it." Alf Shrubb

The San Francisco Marathon™ is “Thinking Green!”
So, after meeting up with JM for a drink at the coffee shop, and being the last day for the early bird registration for the San Francisco Marathon…I signed up!
I had been on the fences of doing San Francisco or Hartford, where Hartford was the closer one that I can easily handle and would be less traveling and less money to actually send myself over there for a weekend. BUT…I figured that I had a few friends out there and I had my teammate that I had been still in contact with from my travels in China and I have not seen her in ages…so biting the bullet, I decided to cut my losses and travel to San Francisco coming August….
So surpassingly the marathon is going GREEN! It’s amazing and well I had a post up recently about that with the next marathon that I will be doing in Austin, which will also be going GREEN as well…
To help support the environment, The San Francisco Marathon™ is providing information and resources for our runners about environmental awareness initiatives, and is partnering with environmentally conscious organizations.
What our sponsors are doing to help the environment:
When registering for your event, be sure to make your registration "Green". For only $2,(which I did) you can offset the amount of gas you use during your trip to and from The San Francisco Marathon™ events. Increase the quantity and offset other environmental impacts of your trip such as electricity.


The Polar Team…

"The only tactics I admire are do-or-die." Herb Elliot

I was once told, “At first, if you don’t succeed, try again…” So this is my second year trying to join the Polar running team. Last year I had applied for it as well. Polar is a company that produces particular watches, heart rate monitors and foot pods, which is the exact company in which I use for my distance watch and running log. So each year they send out a registration form in which asks people around the country to join their team and have them as their sponsorship. I mean it’s quite the honor, but we’ll see if I get in or not. I mean I don’t have to give up my team of the NY Flyer Organization. I also am part of another running club or organization for the Boston Marathon, which is the Alzheimer’s Association.

We shall see if I get in or not…


Racing the Delivery Men…

"First is first, and second is nowhere." Ian Stewart

Ok…So leaving at 6:15-6:20 the latest… to get up to Engineers Gate in Central Park by 7pm is what I have been gearing up towards. I have started my route early on when I had started going to these group runs on Wednesdays and Thursday night runs during the summer of last year. I had always chosen to pick a certain path that swings over around and back towards 89th Street, sometimes going up the challenging 5th Avenue dashing and dodging people all around. Although the challenging places in NYC are: Times Square, 5th Avenue (Christmas time or weekends), and Herald Square.

Ok…on with the story here. So the warm two days earlier in the week was a true blessing for an early January temperature, but tonight was a bit on the chilly side but still warm of a 55 degree weather. Perfect running conditions though. As I placed all of my reflection gear on and headed out of my office with shorts, long sleeved t-shirt/t-shirt inside and my reflective vest (breaking out the bandana since it was warm) but yes it was quite chilly, but warmed up as soon as I got going.

As I raced up 8th avenue trying to dodge any cars that pass me by, I reside in the biking lane. I rather run in the biking lane than go on the sidewalks and dodge people and risk of getting hurt is far more dangerous: constant stop and go and stupid people all around you. So instead I run in the streets, where the cars are much faster and the taxi’s are crazier than anywhere else in the world…but I’ll take my chances. I grew up to running on the streets where cars try to get as close as they could to runners, bikers or any other moving object to see if they move or not…Of course I take that as a challenge though…

Anyways, so going up on 8th avenue this “course” as I call it is like a fartlek (which is a sprinting type of exercise that runners use to improve on their speed). This speed workout is what I use to get up and out of the streets into the park as soon as possible. But it’s good since you have to race certain streets, crowds and well street lights or beat cars out of the gates if you want to succeed in a respectable time. Of course it’s sometimes based on how many street lights catch you, although that’s the challenge.

So taking on the challenge you and being on the bicycle lane and myself being the only runner on there. I take everything as a challenge or a race and well…I looked at the delivery men (mostly Asian (Chinese food) and Mexican) bicycle riders) are riding up and down in that lane.

So I look at this as a race. As they are slow starting up, I quickly get out of the gates very quickly (helps that sprinting was my specialty) and they catch up, we are side by side for a certain amount of time and then they pull ahead. (it is absolutely absurd if you feel like you are going to beat them…so may as well fess up to it) As they stop at the lights these are the points where I try to catch up. When they depart and deliver their foods in other various streets, I allow myself to smile in a victory…saying, “you lose, I win…Sucka!”…

Anyways, usual 3 mile up, 6 around the park (with DG, LS, NC, ES from my Flyer group) rounded the park and then back down (3 down) to the office again...on the cool night. Decided to strip down into T-shirt, Vest, and Shorts and gloves…wishing I had my black sleeves, but survived without them...and live another day...


Redefining ‘Fit to Practice’

"My whole feeling in terms of racing is that you have to be very bold. You sometimes have to be aggressive and gamble." Bill Rodgers

No running last night although it was even better weather to run...Can't believe this weather! So I'll put this in place which I had found off of the NYTimes. Who has the best active list going for doctors...who's good...who's bad...and who's beautiful.

Running tonight! here we go!

Redefining ‘Fit to Practice’
Published: January 3, 2008

THE problem with advising very active people to find doctors who are like them is that there may be no way to know whether a doctor is an athlete without calling and asking. But there are at least two professional organizations that try to help.

Dr. William Roberts of the University of Minnesota suggests the American Medical Society for Sports Medicine, an organization he belongs to. Its members, he said, tend to be athletic and its
Web site, has a link for finding doctors.

Dr. Paul Thompson of Hartford Hospital notes that a group he belongs to, the American Medical Athletic Association, a division of the American Running Association, provides referrals to doctors who tend to be runners.
The runners’ association Web site, has a link for professional referral.

New York Road Runners also has a list of athlete-doctors in the “membership benefits” section
on its site.

But Dr. Thompson cautions against assuming that doctors who advertise a specialty in sports medicine are athletic themselves. It’s not necessarily true.


Destination: White Horse...

"Out on the roads there is fitness and self-discovery and the persons we were destined to be." Dr. George Sheehan

Well another Monday night run + although month, which means = First Monday night runs

Monday Night Runs with the Downtown group, the usual crew was there: DG, JG, JM, LG, nyflygal, Peanut butta J, Stebo, etc…(I missed a whole bunch)…And incredible new comers that joined our usual group of 6-10 to being a well organized 15-20 people that came out in the unseasonable warm weather of 55 degrees where everyone was in a T-shirt and some kind of shorts/pants. We love newcomers to our usual group and try to have them come out more and more to our FLAT course of Monday runs.

As we stretched, chatted and was going to start, but was delayed due to some being late…we finally started with both groups and we had to make sure that everyone was in the group. We had lost one person due to the upward/downward highway path to riverside path. I felt bad, reversed and sprinted back to see if I could catch…no avail, blackness started to strain the visibility factor or how far should I go back. I raced to catch up with the group, which now JG was leading. We discussed that I needed to stay ahead and make sure that the longer run group was going on course. I stayed in the back with SS who did not know the route and JM stayed in front with speedster, ST. I then told SS that I needed to tell JM the route, so I spead up in a long straight away to catch up and tell them the route. It was tough, and they had been way ahead. Being group leader you have to sacrifice a whole lot and now I understand how tough it actually is.

As JM and ST came back while we were at the Staten Island Ferry, I told them to turn around to do a different course that I had in mind. I now saw that DG had scripted a different course when we first talked about this and he did not know what course I had in mind. DG and I had talked about this for a brief time outside the White Horse on our "trial" run and I had thought I would be leading the 2nd group, so there would be no miscommunication. Anyways, all in all we continued and we caught up with the regular group. As we were to go from Chirstopher Street, ST and I left the group to do more miles, so we continued to run the west side highway and then back along the riverside and piers to complete around a 10 mile run.

I dropped off ST at the nearest subway station and then treaded my way back towards where the group had ended the run...Final destination a local bar: The White Horse Tavern.

AS I stretched outside, I could hear some people leaving the bar, "if I started running again, I want to join this running club and end at the White Horse Bar..." AMAZING!


Other Digs...

“The marathon demands patience and a willingness to stay with it...You must be willing to suffer and keep on suffering. Running is something you just do. You don’t need a goal. You don’t need a race. You don’t need the hype of a so-called fitness craze. All you need is a cheap pair of shoes and some time. The rest will follow.” Ted Corbitt

So...my other pair of digs came in today...Asics 1120's. Yup...moving...
Although, this one is a different color...the Silver, white and Chili Pepper....Chili Pepper...kind of goes with the Flyer's colors...no? Am I just being weird? Well...we'll go 6 months: 600+ miles in them...I mean my last pair did...well we switch on and off (office and home pairs) which the office pair goes: Monday, (tuesday - New day - Speed workout), Thursday and the home one goes the distance miles: Saturday runs + miles...
Race shoes are race shoes, which are Mizzuno's that are completely orange...So no flyer colors there, but the laces are red to support Children and Schools.
I'm a stability guy...like to swerve here and there through 5th avenue which helps me out.
Home: Silver, Chili pepper
Office: Black, Merigold (yellow)
Well, we'll try them out tonight...in the warm night (SHORTS!) whahooo!


A running Tattoo?

"The problem with big kickers is they often lose to other big kickers." Harry Groves
CAUTION: Some bloody material ahead, please be ready!
So I had planned to get something after practice that I had planned to get 6 months ago. I have been in hard design mode for the past 3 weeks to get this done…and that is…another TATTOO. This one has some meaning in it…can you care to see beyond the images to relate this to running in some sort of way?

Anyways, I’ll enclose my answer at the bottom, but here is the story…I come back from the Saturday’s morning run and quickly take a shower after buying some apples (Mutsi’s Mother?) at the Union Square Farmer’s Market. JM and JG had gotten me into eating these sweet apples, which are amazing, so now I am hooked. I quickly take a shower, while in there I shave the back of my right calf where I am to get my tat…get out of the shower and wow…I feel weird! Yes, my
leg had been shaved…the new feeling was an awakening to my bare skin showing and my sister said to me, “Yeah, welcome to my world…” I quickly eat lunch and feel as though I want to pass out because of the long mileage that I had done before hand. I resist because my appointment is in like 20 minutes and start to head out the door for it…I grab my runners world magazine and take my camera…where I quickly take a snapshot of my cafĂ© before hand…that’s the before picture.

Walk outside on a sunny day, outside could not be any better. So walk down to St. Marks street, go into the Tattoo place and talk to the guy who is dressing up my Tattoo. He is tracing over my “older” copy of my drawing onto carbon paper or carbon dust in the back…I quickly tell him that there were a few things that had been changed. He abides, taking each element that I tell him to refine...

This was old school…real old school compared to my other Tattoo place that I have been to. JM comes to support me and she said it herself that all of her tats have been scanned over a printer and printed out and then laid out by a silkscreened mirrored image. That’s the usual. None of this old school stuff. He upped the $ amount as well and I abide because well there were changes, but I had no clue about how his free handing was going to look compared to what I had drew out. This got me very nervous, although it looked good, so everything is all good.

As he took another hour just tracing out the changes, he finally finishes and places the tattooed carbon copy powder onto my leg. IT WAS OFF CENTER!! Oh man…ok… I had to say something. He washes it off and we try it again, this time while I am on a stool to align everything up to my leg…this time not all the powder got on my leg and there were spots where he couldn’t see the definition…so he washed it off again and then tried it again, this time we marked the spot to start…and this time it was ok…not perfect, but he said it was doable…so…he drew in parts that he was not familiar with and in some spots he just went with it looking at the picture…quite impressive, although quite nerve wrecking…

So, he had me pay, and as soon as I came back he was all set up. Needle head, ink, light…he was ready. The place was rather ghetto in a ways where as we were waiting for him to sketch out the tattoo, there was two gals that came into the store asking the front person for fake id’s. They actually purchased fake id’s at this place. Major ghettoness…but it was ok.

So he had me stand up on one leg and lay my other leg on this rolling chair. I was a bit quizzical about this as well…uh! I was thinking about a bed. Alright, I have to go through with this. So he started. The pain…well it was even worse than my other one, as I can definitely feel the burning sensation of the sharp object piercing into my skin…as a hot razor blade or to be even more sensitive: a soldering iron burning through your skin in small locations…He continued and continued and continued. JM started talking to me to get my mind off of things. We talked about marathoning and if I would rather do a marathon than this…I said that I would rather do a marathon than go through an hour of tattooing…hahaa…but in the end it’s all good. The pain hurts more for an hour, but the marathoning is the body afterwards that aches.

We talked about which marathons I was doing, anything really to keep my mind off of the pain. It hurt…and it hurt bad. I think it hurt so much because he was pressing down on my soft muscle and the position that I was in. At times, my leg just shook, so uncontrollably that I could not even handle it…and he had to stop because of it. At times he could go on, but he stopped, let me shake out my leg and continue on…this happened 2 times. My body was sweating like crazy, I can feel my sweat pouring out of my pours and had to strip down to a t-shirt.

So, there were times where I just wanted the pain to stop, get it done with and over with. Although, there were times where the spot was too numb to even feel anything and done with all the pain. There were times where I was like…JM is it over with? Where am I at? 30% turned into 60% to 80% to 90%...percentages turned into the mile 26 of a marathon (200 meter sprint) but like all 200 meter sprints, whenever people do say that, it’s never over until it’s over…and even then when it was over, it went on…JM said….your like at the finish line…the pain was still going on…and then she said…well, it’s like NYC marathon, where you have to go on to claim your baggage…and the soreness to finally settle in…she was right…I wasn’t done yet and then finally he said…DONE! I then looked…it was nice…the pain still continued a little even as we ate lunch, where I could feel the tingling of the sensations coming back and my nerve endings trying to find new life…

In all…would I do a marathon or get a Tattoo again…it’s all up in the air. For JM’s help, I now owe her for what she has helped me with and that is to run with her in a marathon.

AND THE ANSWER: Also if you can read Chinese, the numbers are also shown in the picture...

26.2 = marathon = 26.2 miles = my marathons...


“Good Morning”

"The difference between the mile and the marathon is the difference between burning your fingers with a match and being slowly roasted over hot coals." Hal Higdon

Ok…same drill as every Saturday where there are minor changes. Planned to run early and then meet up with the Saturday morning group. Although as I went to bed the night before at 1am drinking pretty much all night starting right after I left work, I thought I was not going to get up so early. But I was wrong, psyching myself out (bad dream?) and waking up at 5am in the morning. So I got up and wrote. I had been meaning to catch up on a few blogs, although I will do a recap of a few of my experiences and then move on towards this year.

So I got myself ready to go out early. I figured if I had left my house at 7:30 this leaves me with 30 min to get up to Central Park, 45 minutes to round the park which takes me up to 8:45 am and meeting up with the flyers at 9 am. Everything went according to plan as I reached up to Central Park with no problem and no one was in the streets. The ice skating rink was packed with many experienced skaters to beat the tourists that smack into walls and can’t control themselves. But it was a beautiful morning with the sun just peering out of the sky, the cold winds were not too bad and I was on my way…

In the park, on Saturdays especially you notice that most people would go the other way. Strangely enough, I tried to say good morning to most of them and most of them never did respond back. Something about New York City runners that are so unsociable. Usually when you go to more suburban places, you pass a walker or a runner, you usually say hello. NYC runners, no response…well some of them at least…I mean it was a nice morning, and well I past and saw two gals with the “perfect” pony tail. Tights were in full gear as well, which later on I will have a field day of my tights stories.

So as I predicted, right on schedule 8:40 I was at 72nd Street Transverse, although I was sweating and really didn’t want to stop. No one was there from my group and I continued on…I would go as far as I could and then turn back at 8:45…and made it back toward the light right before the straight away. As I approached Cat Hill, each time passing the memorial of Ryan Shay and each time, paying my respects to the great runner.

The Saturday morning group crew was somewhat there and somewhat started anew, 3 Flyers were waiting, 2 of them new and one of them was the pace leader, JS. I introduced myself to them and started refueling with a banana that I had in my backpack. Then like everyone started showing up from all sides of the park. I was like a calling…3 turned into 8, then 8 turned into 14, then that turned into at least 20…it was a very nice good large group. I lagged behind making sure that no one was left behind and talked with one of the new gals and made sure that she was fitting in the Flyers as best as we could make her feel welcome.

I find it important that if and when you come to these group runs you need to bond with some of the people whom have been with the flyers (and maybe I am feeling more in-tuned with the organization a little more because I am on the board now) But I feel as though if you make a good impression the first time, then people will feel more certain to come out again and again. They feel comfortable and would come back because they feel comfortable…so I hold back the fort for about half the time and then SS comes forth and rounds up the back of the crew. I burst on ahead trying to catch up to the head of the pack…but without shame, I am unable to do so…too much distance to catch up with. We end the run with a large group, then they slowly disperse and JG, JM and I head out of the park together and not making it too far where we decided to go back home on the subway.


New Digs...

"The long run is what puts the tiger in the cat." Bill Squires, Coach

So got my new digs in...first of two pairs. Same pairs of shoes as the ones I had from last year of training. No need to get new and improved shoes the way that I was thinking. Hey if it works, why fix it?
I mean the newer ones have different changes, but very little in comparison. The different numbers coincide with the different editions...so mine are Asic Gel's 1120...where there are:

1130's, 2120's, etc...

But yes, I'll go with my White, Merigold and black shoes...strollin'!