Gridiron 4 Miler and Washington Heights 5K

Today is that first day of the season that feels like spring - sending people running around half naked even though it's still only 60 degrees outside. I'm totally guilty of this.

I've lasted the entire winter without a proper pair of stockings - I just don't see the point in buying something that I will inevitably destroy within an hour - and today I strutted out of the house in a skirt and bare legs. 

Legs, meet the sun. It's been awhile, get reacquainted! 

All things considered, this winter was a breeze. In fact, my legs had their fair share of encounters with the winter sun as I raced in Central Park in shorts on various occasions. Shorts in January? Yes please. 

But my last two races were run in slightly warmer apparel. I've been trying to document what I wear for each of my races along with the weather on that particular morning. It helps on the night before a race when I'm scared I'll be either too cold or too hot with my planned outfit. 

NYRR Grid Iron 4 Miler

The morning of the Gridiron 4 Miler (Superbowl Sunday) was sunny and in the low to mid 30's. I suited up in a Nike long-sleeve dri-fit with a North Face quarter-zip over it (similar to this one). I wore a pair of non-fleece lined leggings along with  my gloves, ear warmer and buff. 


It was also my first time racing in my new pair of Saucony Rides - my go to shoe. This new pair is SO PINK, which is different for me. 

By the end, I was pretty sweaty and probably could have ditched a few items. 

It was a beautiful day for a run and I was so happy to be in Central Park with Peter. He didn't get to attempt the longest football throw, but we did throw down a 7:41 pace to help counteract all the beer and chili we planned on consuming later that day. 

My sister was in town for the weekend and we spent the rest of the morning and afternoon cooking up chili, guacamole and peanut butter & honey covered popcorn. Obviously, we also needed to grab a bag of Doritos - a Superbowl staple. 

My most recent race was one of my least-run distances, a 5K! After PRing and finishing as the first female in the Brown Santa 5K this December in Austin, Texas my expectations for the Washington Heights 5K were pretty low. 

My shins have been bothering me, and I haven't been doing a whole lot of running - instead focusing on strength training. 

I guess the extra leg muscles helped me on this hilly 5K course, because I surprised myself by PRing! And I'm that much closer to breaking a 7:00 pace. 

NYRR Washington Heights Salsa, Blues & Shamrocks 5K

If you care about the details of Sunday - 

I jogged a mile to Peter's place where we got an Uber up to Washington Heights. I planned on running in a long sleeve shirt, but ended up keeping a quarter zip over it because it was chillier than anticipated. I think it was a good call - I remember internally bitching about a lot of things during the run (okay, really just all the hills), but never about my temperature.

Peter started back in my corral and it helped having him to chase for awhile - until I realized there was no way I was keepin' up for the whole race. 

In 3.1 miles we climbed almost 200 feet but all the climbing meant there were also some nice long downhills to make up some lost time. I phoned it in on one of the hills, severely slowing down, but I gave myself a good swift kick in the butt, said, "SUCK IT UP BUTTERCUP" and kicked it to the end. 

Where I almost cried when I crossed the finish line. 

Everything hurt. Which I guess means I gave it my all. 

I was pleasantly surprised to see my 21:59 finish time (7:05 pace) and to learn that my time made me the 5th female finisher for November Project - yay team points! 

Now I'm just itching to sign up for a FLAT 5K. 

But my race calendar is filling up with 9+1 races so it seems I'll continue to race the hills of Central Park for the time being. 

Here's what's coming up: 

April 2 - Scotland Run 10K
April 24 - Run As One 4 Miler
April 30 - Bear Mountain Marathon Relay (GULP first trail run on this beast of a course) 
May 1 - Five Borough Bike Tour (GULP my body my hate me after this weekend) 
May 14 - Healthy Kidney 10K
May 21 - Brooklyn Half 

I had the sudden realization that the Brooklyn Half is 11 weeks away and if I want to PR I need to get to work. 

Buttttt, getting to work is a little difficult with the current shin pain I'm experiencing. I'm trying not to do very much running on it and hoping hoping hoping it's not the beginnings of a stress fracture. I saw the doctor and he doesn't think I need an MRI yet - but I'm looking to start PT. 

The plan is slow and steady mileage increases with lots of cross training mixed in. And constantly reminding myself that a PR in Brooklyn isn't the end goal - a BQ in a fall marathon is what I'm after!