Sunday, November 27, 2011

11/21-11/27: 59 Miles, Thanksgiving, The Turkey Chase, & New York

It was a busy week of traveling up to New York to see my family. That is of course after I did the Turkey Chase yet again for the 4th year in a row now. I'll go over that first. I got to the starting line feeling very calm, particularly because I knew this was more of a workout than a race. It's not like I was going to run a PR on a hilly course like this one, and I am far past my fall peak, which I found out was truly at the Philly Half back in September. Still, I wanted to run to win, and prize money goes 5 deep in this race. In 2008, I was 9th. In 2009, I was 7th. 2010, I was 5th...

The gun went off and I found Sam and Karl surging to the front who I tucked in behind with another guy in an orange jersey. The 4 of us made the turn onto Cedar Lane and then up the back hills where mile 1 was where I split 4:55ish. I then went ahead of Karl and never saw him again- I think he ended up dropping out. Kinda sucked because now Sam surged into the lead with the orange jersey runner running with him and a gap grew between them and me. I was basically on my own the rest of the race. Around Mile 3 the orange jersey runner lost ground on Sam and I thought he was coming back to me everytime we went uphill...but then on the flats and downhills he seemed furthur away again....I hate that. I just kept him in sight and focused on my form to run strong. Sam must be bored too, I thought. LOL. He was just chasing the lead vehicle. Mile 4, Mile 5. Nothing special. The end of the race neared and I focused on my effort for one last drive toward home where people cheered. I ran strong through the finish and felt relieved to be done with one final effort. Overall it was a fun event and I grabbed 3rd place and $150. I then quickly jogged in my flats to my car and drove off to pack and shower and leave for New York.

I stayed at my Aunt's house Thursday night in Port Washington, then drove Friday morning just Northwest to Sleepy Hollow, NY, where the headless horseman started chasing me across a bridge not really. I drove up there to run in a beautiful place called the Rockefeller Park Preserve. I actually only discovered it last year when I was there for my cousin Jeff's passing. There are miles and miles of dirt trails and it is hilly. Great surface and solitude. I got out of my car and immediately started on a 13 mile easy solo run. Totally relaxed, and didn't care what pace I was running. I guessed 730s. Afterward, I drove to my other Aunt's in Westchester to have some food and shower before driving back home. I took Saturday off and did my first real "long run" on Sunday. I ran on the towpath before going into Georgetown and DC for a while. I kept it easy most of the way not really worrying about pace but I did find myself "waking up" for some of the way back, clicking off a few 6:30s which is a more normal long run pace for me. My mileage is still low and I know I am still not fully recovered after my fall season, so I am making sure to not overdo it. I'll be honest though, I feel really healthy and good, and most days I am out running not worrying about pace, just keeping it easy. I Got in 16 miles for my long run and 59 miles this week.

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