Last 20 - Long Run

This morning I woke up at 5:15 am, got ready with my clothes all layed out from the night before. It's cold out and doing a 20 miler with the intentions of running 2 laps before the actual Joe Kleinerman 10K race and meeting up with some of my Alzheimer's Association teammates to give them their registration bibs.

It was cold and windy out as I sprang to run to Central Park. I would hear my name being called out while running down Literary Walk...

Boy, who knows me at this hour? Seriously?

I actually knew who it was as I found out it was one of my co-workers on the YCS (Youth and Community Services side) of the NYRR. I had been a part of that crew for 2 years and being very involved with the track and field program and the Youth Events Team.

Anyways, I had to get to the bandshell as I saw many people that I have grown to love. These people were a great part of me and we chatted (during the days leading up to the NYC marathon expo, as they were getting ready) and I was helping out with the volunteers department. So I left my bag with the volunteers tent and went about with my 2 laps that I wanted to get in before the actual race.

I went about, trying to get a good rhythm, trying to get warm as the wind wisped into your face. This morning wasn't too bad, I was all wrapped up and bundled for it, although later in January and February would only get colder...

It was 5:55 am when I started, I would find a water/bathroom sign hanging from a L-pole at the first water station...yes, that's work talk right now, and now I am more conscious about the sign age at each NYRR race and just overall security reasons...so, I would tell someone when I loop around again.
The night still wore on as I finished my first lap of 5 miles in 30ish minutes...I told the event manager, Edwin O. about the L-pole hanging and he simply said that the zip ties were all simply snapping due to the wind and the cold. Plastic bending, yup...snapping like peanut brittle.

I told Edwin that I would fix it as I looped around the second time, all I needed was a zip tie. I have done this before in my previous jobs while helping out with the events crew in the NYC half and the Brooklyn half doing an all night shift putting up signs...and yes, one of the times it was with Dan S.

Where we had a blast of a time with the mini golf carts flying around in Central Park.

As I took down the L-pole, I was sure to be careful in not snapping the other zip tie (I only had one zip tie and it would clearly be a shame if I broke both and then the sign would no longer be up!) That would clearly be bad. I slowly maneuvered it down, fixed it and then slowly back up, cutting it some slack and not tightening it up all the way. The wind was definitely an issue and I got it up...and went on my way in running again. I quickly got cold due to the standing, although warmed up again as I started running.

By this time it was 6:35 am and I would meet up with Amanda L. from my Alzheimer's team to run a few laps at my speed. She had been wanting to run longer with a faster pace and I had welcomed to have her join me in my insanity...but she had 2 shows of Annie that day and night and 2 more the following day...which is absolutely insane!

So I welcomed her joining me. I liked the company, but as I went counter clockwise around the east
side and rounded up around the west side...she was no where to be found...I continued on thinking that she decided to have some sanity and decided against waking up at a crazy hour...but as I rounded towards the reservoir.

There she was!

She was coming up from Columbus Circle and I was going down...so she made a U-turn and joined me. We went for the rest of the way and finished the loop. Then, did another lower loop for good measure.

I met up with the teammates (Melissa M, her friend and Dr. Rob H) got my bag from the volunteers tent, then moved all of my items to baggage.

Brrr....it was getting cold.

Running beforehand and then cooling down in the cold and then starting back up again is definitely not a good idea...but I endured it as I got into a slower colored corral (yellow? Green?) Instead of the usual faster blue, which I am assigned to.

I decided to pick yellow and stick with that. It was unusual that I didn't know anyone and I found and said hello to a R2R teammate - Elizabeth M. As she walked into the starting corral and was just going...as everyone was moving and I kept along not to cause a wreck if I stopped and actually said hello.

So, I continued on at an easy pace trying to stay with the crowd, trying to find some company along the way. Until I saw one of my NY Flyer teammates, Bo K. She was running gingerly and we have not seen each other in a while, so it was a good time to catch up, we chatted and just seemed like a stroll...we chatted about how our lives where and she told me about her dating lifestyle. Uh! I was laughing at some of the stories and jokingly around we made.

She then got competitive and started to run a bit...then burnt out at the hills...which, I didn't chat with her until we finished because some people don't want to chat (and I could sense it). She had some minor issues with her knee and wasn't feeling well that morning, so nothing to it...we ran together, I was in no rush and ate my bagel as we ran, I was getting hungry at that point.

Anyways, after we got through the race, she thanked me for staying with her and we told each other we would keep in touch more. I needed to finish up my last loop around the park as I started up again to finish up...I then saw Amanda L. again as I finished and thanked her for running that morning and then ran into some Team for Kids members to ask them how they did.

Wheew! Finally over! It wasn't so bad, just waking up in the morning and running...going on some tight schedules and not fluidly running from one to the other.

But the day was beautiful, morning sunshine and I walked home...seeing my "bff" from ycs, Ivette B. as we chatted. I wandered home with my packed warm clothes...ahh...so nice!
20 done...taper time and we'll see how we do in Charleston!

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