Friday, July 4, 2008

The Passion Is Raw, But The Dogs Are Cooked.

I forgot to mention this the other day (my bad), but the boardwalk race at Long Beach was cancelled because they were unable to source the necessary timers to score the race. Wha????

All they had was a kids fun run. No thanks. There is a 10k at Central Park next week called the Park to Park Run. Scott's doing this run along with some others from the team, and I might just do it.

So with no special running plans today, our club had a special run this morning at the park. My kids came to the track with me. The air was barely breatheable today and the humidity was at 100%. It was disgusting. I felt like I had jumped into a vat of peanut butter. I started out slow, and began to pick up the pace a little, but overall my pace for the 4-miler today was 8:47. I did not want to overdo it with the miles, but to tell the truth, I feel like going back out again. I guess my body is getting used to the abuse. Halfway during the run, it started to rain, a sudden reprieve from this repressively congested run.

My 16-week training program begins on July 14 and as such I started putting together some new long runs which I will be testing throughout my upcoming insane buildup to the big show.


I ran through there twice last year. Once along Shore Parkway, past the VZ, all the way to Owl's Head, and the other time straight down Metropolitan and over the Williamburgh Bridge.
Both runs were fun, challenging and even dangerous at times and I'm looking forward to do it again. Oh wait! Last year I also did the Brooklyn Half too!

Google Maps has gotten pretty damn amazing. For some time they have had a button called "Street View". If you click on it, it will show you a picture of any portion of a street that is highlighted by just clicking on it. Now, I am not sure about the other cities in America, but I just so happen to see that literally EVERY street in New York City has photos.

The reason why this is huge, is because now, I can preview the neighborhood before I run through it. I can see if there is a running track, if there are thugs, if traffic is bad, etc, all before I chart a new run. And in speaking of Brooklyn, I created a super-long 17.5 mile run using those Google tools. The run begins by Fort Hamilton Park near the entrance to the Verrazano Narrows Bridge. From there I go up 4th Avenue (NYC Marathon route!) all the way until 44th street. I make a right turn there, and pass Sunset Park on my left. I go another mile or so and make a left onto Fort Hamilton Parkway. From there, it's straight north to the southwest entrance of Prospect Park. I go into the Park, do a counter-clockwise, north-easterly run, and go north on E. Lake Drive in the park until I exit and make a right onto Eastern Parkway. Eastern Parkway looks like a great road to run on, but it heads straight into East New York (and the pictures I saw did not look too safe, lol). So, I make a left onto Washington Avenue, and go straight north for yet another mile and a half. When I get to Myrtle Avenue, I make a right. Myrtle Avenue is a straight 6 mile run alone, which takes me back into Queens, and back to Forest Park. And then from there, it's another 2 miles back to my house, and probably straight into a muscle relieving soak in my tub! Hopefully, I will do this run this year, and if I do, I will definitely give a lowdown on it.

My sneakers are dying.
My Brooks Beast are coming close to their end. I've put well over 500 miles on these bad boys. I was told about this place in the city called Jack Rabbit Sports. They not only sell good sneakers, but they even have treadmills there for them to tell you how you are running and what kind of shoes you need based on your run.

Mileage Cutback
Okay so I've done my hardwork, and now it's time to cutback before I officially start my marathon training program. I'm on track to run between 30-40 miles this week. As for what program to do this year, I am still undecided. Last year I vowed off of any program, opting for my own rules, and I did alright. This year, I really want to overcome the long run cramping, so I will definitely be looking to get in at least 2 20-milers and perhaps even 1 marathon training run.
Some people swear against doing 26 miles as a training run, so I'll have to see how I feel about this.

Overall, my running should be fun this week since I'm out on vacation. However, running is not the only sport to grab my interest though. At least not this weekend.

Wimbledon is shaping up to having two great finals. The Williams sisters will be squaring off against one another for the Women's final, while Nadal who has won 28 straight sets will be up against Roger Federer. Federer is looking for his 6th straight champion on the grassy court. It is shaping up to be a colossal collision course in the the making.

The Mets are on a roll offensively, and their big "guns", Reyes, Wright, Beltran and Delgado have done very well at Citizens Bank Park. At today's group run, Scott said it best, "After scoring 24 runs and 51 hits over the last three games, Santana's going to strike out 8 and give up 2 runs....And the Mets are going to lose 2-1. I hope he's wrong, but he speaketh of experience.
The Mets have been a tough watch this year. And the Phillies and their fans truly hate us. Should be great!

The Yanks got spanked by the Sox last night, and their manager's not too happy. The rivalry continues today

But, perhaps, the best sporting event this year is this:

Step Up To The Plate!!!
The Nathan's 4th of July Hot Dog Eating Competition.

For the first time ever, I sat and watched this competition. Grown men (and women), most of them surprisingly skinny, stuffing their faces with hot dogs to the breaking point. The seriousness in which this competition was broadcast by ESPN is almost surreal. Since when was eating a sport? Did I miss something here?

The size of the crowd near Stillwell and Surf today was beyond imagination. I don't think the Brooklyn Cyclones, which play right down the block, ever had as large a congregation as this.

In spirit of this competition, and in the name of lunch, I made us Nathan's Famous as well.


Laura said...

Jack Rabbit Sports is great - hope you like it when you get there!

DGA said...

Whatever happenned to Jack Rabbit?