Sunday, August 31, 2008

Survived the Monster Half-Marathon

Completed my first half-marathon today morning, at the Monster Marathon run in Virgil, NY!!

Took 3 hours and 31 minutes to handle the 13.1 mile distance run through the Virgil forest.

The run was through a hilly wooded area with enough uphill climbs to make it difficult for me to run continuously. Walked most of the climbs, especially the steep 1000+ feet elevation gain hill in the beginning - between mile one and two.

The half marathon distance was out and back on the same path, with many stream crossings and intersections with local roads (zero traffic!) along the way. The aid stations were placed at midway point and at the end of the 6.5 mile run. These aid stations made it easy for me to complete the distance; I was running from one aid station to the next.

After this one, the Queens half-marathon coming up in two weeks will be much easier!!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

3 miles in 32:07 minutes in the dark

Went running after a full day at work for the first time today.

Reached home around 7:00 PM; relaxed a bit and then went running at around 8:00 PM in Lincoln Park. The park was mostly dark. Ran along the streets under the street lights for a while and then circled around a closed loop a few times till it became boring. Continued exploring the park in the dark, and ran along the huge artificial lake in the park.

My legs were stiff all along, and hence was surprised to see that I had completed the 3 mile distance in 32:07 minutes.

The Monster Half-Marathon this Sunday is weighing in heavily on my mind. It is my first marathon, and is a very difficult one with a huge altitude gain. It is also supposed to be very hot and inhospitable trail. All this is making me worried about successfully completing the half- marathon.

I don't have to run it, if I don't want to. More important thing now is to be able to run healthy. I will try my best at the Monster Half-marathon, and focus fully on the Queens Half-marathon two weeks later.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Six miles in 1 hour 15 minutes at Liberty State Park

Started the Sunday with a six mile run at Liberty State Park along with Siva. Completed the distance in one hour and fifteen minutes.

For the first time in my runs, I had to take a bathroom break - very surely induced by the cup of coffee I had before the start of the run. Luckily for me, Liberty State Park has clean toilets!

One question that has been on the forefront of my mind is whether I should or should not run in the Monster Half Marathon in Virgil next Sunday. If I run and complete it, it will be my first half marathon, and the first run at such distance. The difficult terrain which includes over 2700 feet of elevation gain coupled with the lack of adequate preparation is holding me back to take up this effort with a full heart. The NYRR Queens half-marathon is two weeks later on Sunday Sep 14th.

I will run in both! The Monster half would be a good one to begin with, as any time I set during this event will be easy to beat later on. Besides, completing the Monster half marathon will make running on flat surfaces look easier. That would be a good preparation for the Philadelphia Marathon in November, especially as it is just 90 days away!

Friday, August 22, 2008

9 Miles in 1 hour 55 minutes at Rockland Lake State Park

Accompanied Dr. Ashis Roy to the Self-Transcendence Marathon today at the Rockland Lake State Park.

Dr. Roy completed the marathon in 6:04
and won the special prize for being the oldest runner.

I ran 9 miles during the time Dr. Roy was running the marathon. I ran with him on his third round around the lake, but then found out that it was not a good idea to run with the participants of a race; for many reasons - one, it does not look good for the runner; two, there could be accusations of outsiders setting the pace for the runner.

While waiting for Dr. Roy to complete one lap around the lake - when I was to giving him Gatorade - I completed two sets of three miles to end up with 9 miles total mileage.

I have not been able to run much in the last week or two, mainly as I started a new job. I should be able to run more frequently from now on as I settle into a routine at work.

Friday, August 15, 2008

5 miles in 54:25 on Super Friday

Ran 5 miles today morning very early; started around 6:30 AM. Since I didn't get enough sleep yesterday, was not sure if I could complete the 5 mile distance. Managed to do it by running slow and steady.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

4 miles in 44:51 minutes at Liberty State Park

Back to running after almost a week!

Difficult run today - one of those I-Don't-Want-To-Run days. Stuck to the basics and ran slowly and steadily for 45 minutes to finish 4 miles. Need more of these kinds of running over the next two weeks to be reasonably successful at the Monster Half-Marathon on Aug 31st.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

First 2 hour run and first 11 mile run

Ran 11.15 miles in 2 hours today at the Rockland Lake State Park along the Hudson River in New York State! The longest I have run so far in terms of both distance and time.

Drove a little over an hour to the Rockland Lake State Park as a trial run before the Self-Transcendence Marathon next Friday when I will accompany Dr. Ashis Roy on his 85th Marathon.

The run was very pleasant and very picturesque. It is a 2.8 odd miles bike trail around a scenic lake. Very flat and very fast! I completed a little over three and a half rounds taking two drinks break - the first one after one round, and the second one after completing 8 miles.

I reached the 10 mile mark in 1:48 minutes, shaving off a full six minutes from the 1:54 I had accomplished on my Birthday. 11 miles was in 1 hour 58 minutes.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

5 miles in 51:56 on a day of running after a week break

Did not run for a week since last Tuesday's 10K run :(

Finally got around to run today and completed running 5 Miles at Liberty State Park, finishing the distance in 51:56 minutes.

Ran along the water-front walkway all the way to the Ferry Launching area, and then continued to run along the path adjacent to the boat docking area. Discovered a walkway connecting Jersey City to Liberty State Park at the end of Jersey Avenue near the Jersey City Medical Center building.

Today's run of 5 miles in 51:56 minutes is my personal best at this distance, shaving off more than a minute from the 53:08 minutes I accomplished at the Father's Day 5M in June.

Monday, August 4, 2008

9.3 miles on a lean week

Very little running last week! A 5K on Monday followed by a 10K on Tuesday.

Reasons, justifications, excuses, busy weekend - all resulted in not running after Tuesday. Nevertheless, the past few days have been of intense self-discovery and breakthroughs - very proud of myself! Have to re-commit to the goal of running a marathon this year, and get back to running and training regularly.

A few runs in the next few weeks of August:
  • A 10+ mile run in LSP this week.
  • A shorted run with friends at LSP on Sunday
  • A 12 mile+ run at Rockland Lake Park on Friday Aug 22nd accompanying Dr. Ashis Roy on his 85th Marathon
  • A half marathon - MY FIRST!! - at Virgil, NY on Sunday Aug 31st
Gotta make running a regular part of life....