Monthly Archives: September 2009

Confessions of a Slacking Runner

Confession #1: I have not run since Saturday.

As you may remember in my last post (and if you didn’t read it, whatr you crazy?!) I went out hard on Saturday night.. leaving Sunday to be a recovery day. Not a training recovery day, a hangover recovery day. I sat on my couch all day, more or less, and watched chick flicks.Which went hand in hand with finishing a box of tissues. Which leads me to..

Confession #2: I love chick flicks.

The Hallmark channel and Kleenex definitely have a back-office deal goin’ on:

Kleenex: Hey Hallmark, that last scene isn’t sad enough, I only used one tissue.

Hallmark: Kleenex! Dude! I hear you man, but both main characters can’t die!

Kleenex: Hally, you know the deal, it’s gotta hit the three tissue mark or we’re going to start making holiday cards and put you out of business.

Hallmark: #($*&#))(!!(@*#. Cue the car crash… and mel women across America bawling their eyes out.

While laying on the couch I had these achey pains in my hips, too. I felt like an old sad story and all I needed was 4 cats to complete the picture.

Monday I had off from work, but worked from home all day none the less. I got dressed in my running gear at around 12pm.. but never made it out. Bummer.

This morning? Didn’t even attempt it.

is that a snarl?

is that a snarl?

 

 

Confession #3: I’m scared I’m falling out of the game again.

Confession #3A: I’m going to set my alarm for 6:15 tomorrow morning and try to beat the off cycle I feel coming on. This isn’t really a confession as much as a solution, but that would ruin the theme.

Wish me luck team.

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How to Be Productive on Saturday

There are two key steps to follow to set up a kickass Saturday:

Step 1) Don’t get drunk Friday night

Step 2) Wake up the same time you do during the week. If you can get your butt out the door to work for someone else, damn straight you should give the same attention to yourself.

Saturday morning I opened my eyes at 7:15am and rolled myself (somewhat painfully but I knew I wanted it) out of bed. Mike 1, Mike 2, and all of Greenpoint, Brooklyn was still asleep. So the morning was all mine. Small victory for mel.

I started the morning with an old standby breakfast: 1/2c oatmeal made with 1c water, blueberries, walnuts, and a drizzle driz of honey. Then I positioned it on the floor of my room to present you with proper lighting in this photo. Yes, I did feel strange arranging it on the floor.pre-run oatmeal breakfast

About 2 hours later I set out for a run. I was running short on time due to plans to meet my friends for an apple picking excursion (woohoo!) so I decided on an Ewald workout to kick more ass in less time. I hit up the McCarren Park track and felt really good about it. I only had 1/2 cup of the coffee also which is noteworthy. Mel – 1, coffee – 0.

Saturday morning workout:

  • .5 miles to the McCarren Park track
  • 8 pushups
  • 40 bicycle crunches
  • 10 reverse crunches
  • 4×100 sprints with 100 recovery in between
  • repeat steps 2 through 5
  • finish with another round of pushups and crunches
  • .5 miles back
  • stretch in front of my apartment while the old lady on the first floor watches me through her window and then says “i like watching you”. note to self: bake her some cookies and/or never get old.

I was surprised that the oatmeal kept me goin’ from 8am – 1pm. Nice. I then met up with my friends Sam and Hayley for a New Jersey apple picking adventure. It was glorious!

serious. business.

serious. business.

There were endless rows of apple trees. I kind of wanted to run through them like that scene in the Sound of Music and sing with the VonTrap family.

 

apple tree rows
We taste tested until we felt sick, naturally.

eating an apple

My basket of applefruits:

just picked apples

I arrived home exhausted and happy. It’s sad that September is already peacin’ out! Now I’ve got about 3 lbs of apples, and a pie waiting to be made. I hope. Someone call me and ask me where it is tomorrow so that I feel guilty. Otherwise there’s a good chance it aint happening.

At night I headed out to Staten Island to get wacky with some friends. In which 3 margaritas and an unknown amount of beer was drank went missing. Went to sleep at 3am. Woke up at 11.  And that, my friends, is how not to have a productive Sunday. :).

Rockin Run and Guitar Fun

Hey Team.

I’m sorry the title of this post rhymes. It’s not so cool. But this morning rocked! Another mysterious beauty run. I started out expecting to do a short loop of 2.6, but once I hit the turn-around mark I was feeling too good to stop, and once I hit the 3.2 mark I still didn’t want to stop. What’s goin on! Stop the madness! Ghostbusters! Kalamazoo!

I finished the morning with a 3.8 mile loop here. The last .75 miles I started to get pretty tired, but pulled through like a champion (probably more like a runner up). No jelly legs, no runner’s knee. Just tired, which I can handle. I got back to my place and stretched for a hot minute and slammed a small glass of 1%milk mixed with a little chocolate JayRobb protein powder. It was like lumpy chocolate milk. Yum?

I thought I’d share this random mini silver boot I came across while walking to the train today:

Barbie's on the run!

Barbie's on the run!

I also want to tell you that the NYC Guitar School is seriously awesome, and I’m loving every minute of it. I’ve got 3 chords down (ha) and wrote song #2 last night. It’s not a good song, but who cares! I wrote it! I serenaded the Mikes with song #1 last week which I call…. “song #1”, and I could tell they wanted more. I’m a songwriter prodigy in the making. Call me if you wanna make a deal.

Happy Friday 🙂

Mysterious Running Gusto

Maybe it’s because I’ve been cutting down on coffee, or maybe I’m made of magic; but my runs have been rocking and full of energy. I vote for the magic theory.

Yesterday morning I set out to do an Ewald workout, and unlike my last attempt, this one was very successful. I started my day at 6:15am with half a cup of coffee and a small piece of bread with jelly. I also had 7 solid hours of sleep behind me which I think makes all the difference.

My Tuesday run centered around the McCarren Park track in Williamsburg and looked like this:

picture courtesy of google. sweet bird.

picture courtesy of google. sweet bird.

  • .5 mile warmup to the track
  • 8 push ups (modified on my knees due to lack of pythons) and 40 bicycle crunches
  • 4×100 sprints with 100 recovery in between
  • Repeat steps 2 and 3
  • 8 push ups and 40 bicycle crunches (total of 3 sets)
  • 1 mile cool down

I was very happy with this workout and my chest is still sore today. I’d like to change my next Ewald workout up with some new strength moves and maybe 200’s instead of 100’s. Variety is the spice of life?

This morning’s run was equally awesome. I finally did a different route than usual, and ran over the Pulaski Bridge to Long Island City. This is a pretty cool bridge for me to run over in the morning because the total distance over and back is about 3.5 miles. I also get to look down onto the entrance of the Midtown Tunnel which is interesting. I like running over traffic. Maybe I’ll spit off of the bridge next time and see if I can hit a car. Just kidding..

But seriously.

Make Your Life List

Every night I get home from work and think to myself “okay, now I can do what I really want for the rest of the night.” Saturday mornings come and I say to myself “okay, now I can really focus on what I want to do next with my life.”

It seems like I spend a lot of time putting my actions in the future. But you know what? I want to start kickin more butt. Not yours. Mine.melbuttkick

During the weekdays, while trapped sitting at my desk, I have small wishes of leaving work early to get in an extra run, coming home to bake cookies, getting lost in a great book, meeting a friend for dinner & drinks. Small events, small thoughts, but things that make the difference between a good day and bad day.

I always said that I was about “the small things”, and while this is true (brussel sprouts can keep me happy for hours), I decided tonight that I would write down my bucket list. Bucket list sounds pretty morbid though, so let’s call it my Life List.

When I look back on my life when I’m 99, want to remember what it was like to do these things, and never have to only wish I did:

  • run a marathon (you had to see this one coming)
  • drive across the country
  • get married (love).
  • live abroad for a year
  • learn to play guitar (mel hendrix in the works)
  • write a song 🙂 or many
  • cut off all my hair regardless of who will hate it
  • get published. i used to write for a newspaper in college, but man i’d love to see my words on paper again. and not just the endless notebooks i keep in my drawer.
  • have children
  • sing with a band
  • live in a house by a lake

All of these make me smile. Alot of them are simple which both surprises me that it’s that easy and makes me think I should be thinking bigger. I also thought about giving this overnight to gel in my head in case there are more. But of course there will be more I want to add on everyday. So I’ll continue to write them down as they come.

Some of the things listed are definitely long-term, some maybe within the next five years. Guitar within the next 10 weeks. What matters is that they happen, and that I know I can take steps now to get there. Cutting my hair? Okay that one’s one step. But I don’t have the balls for it yet.

So.

If you’re wondering what this has to do with running, I’m not quite sure. This is what I think about while I’m out there clearing my mind; or clogging it up depending on how you see it. But I think it’s important to recognize that while we push everyday to accomplish the small things like a 3 mile run, a project at work, or a rockin’ night out, the big things–no matter how small they might seem–matter too. And you gotta go for them in case you only get this one chance.

Write it down somewhere and look at it from time to time. You got this. I’m mostly talking to myself, but hopefully you feel it too.

NYC Fall Weekends Mean Good Running

One thing that cannot  be taken for granted in NYC is the weather. Seasons come and go like traffic (quick, erratic, unpredictable) and perfectly sunny + breezy days invite swarms of people out to the streets to soak it up.

Planning ahead to take advantage of the cool weather for some serious running, I was successful in my party/alcohol management this weekend and didn’t get a visit from Hangover Harry once. If he came to your house instead, I’m so sorry I let him loose.

Friday night after work I met my friend Amanda for some Mexican food and drinks at a random restuarant we walked past in Chelsea called Salsa Y Salsa. I sipped on a mojito while she got the sangria happy hour special:

she was successful.

she was successful.

The drinks and food were both weak (mad wack, yo). I would recommend you don’t try this place.

Saturday morning I woke up naturally at 6:30am (victory!) and ran a sweet 4.5 miles here from my place down through South Williamsburg and back. Warning: TMI ahead. I started out feeling like a rocket, but somewhere around mile 3 I really had to go to the bathroom. Every step I took I felt my bladder dying inside. I tried to trick my mind and focus on the scenery, but you just don’t get used to the feeling. Bouncing up and down–bad idea all around. I ran frantically in search of a coffee shop that might let me use their restroom but it wasn’t even 8am yet, so NOTHING was open. I ended up slowing down to a walk for maybe 6 blocks to give my bladder a break from the pressure. Eventually I starting running again (very fast) and jetted straight home. Internal mutiny?

Also- I ran before eating anything and I definitely noticed a drop in energy during the run. If I have time in the future I need to eat breakfast first.

Sunday morning I did have time to eat breakfast first (apple, yogurt + granola) and holy moses it made such a difference. I don’t know where this run came from. It was glory. I haven’t had one of these in a while and it was the final proof I needed that I’m back. My 5 run comeback theory was right on.

The motion in my body felt so natural I wasn’t even thinking about how far or how fast I was going. I just let the run guide itself, and mapped it when I came home. The result was 4 smooth miles here, after which I did a victory dance that included the running man*.

I’d also like to note that my calves were very sore both Saturday and Sunday after my runs. I don’t know if I’ve ever really been sore in that area and I’m not sure why all of a sudden now? My best theory is that I’ve been wearing high heeled boots in the cooler weather + no running for 2 weeks = my calf muscles got tight. I was hobbling around all night last night. I probably looked awesome.

Today I’m taking a rest day because I don’t want to overwhelm myself, and I’ll also give my calf muscles time to heal the ef up (heal the ef up guys!). I’ll leave you with a picture of this morning’s sunrise in Union Square:

7:30am, NYC

7:30am, NYC

Total week 1 miles: 14.7. On to comeback week 2!

* I made a running man instructional video if you’d like to learn. Email me for details.

** No, I didn’t.

Back in the Run Game: Week 1

It’s always  mentally daunting for me to get back in the game after more than 2 weeks off, but it really only takes about 5 runs to be in it to win it again. I’ve gotten in 4 runs in this week which feels great. And by great, I mean saweeeeet.

My mileage is fairly low, but I dig it:

– Sunday: 2.6m

– Monday: 2.6m

– Tuesday: mini Ewald workout

– Friday: 3m

I passed out at 9:45 last night, and woke up at 6am today without an alarm. Woohoo! I made my instant coffee just before Mike 1 got up to brew a pot. Bullocks. But we chilled on the couch for 10 minutes with our respective cups o’ joe none the less. I drank about half a mug. Then it was off to get my gear on.

Today is the first day of the fall season that I donned a long sleeve t-shirt. Don’t you love running in those? I started out with the sleeeves pulled over my hands (cozy) and by mile 1 I was rolling them up. Perfect temperature transitional gear. A good ol’ cotton shirt. Most runners would think running in cotton is crazy, but I rarely spree for expensive technical gear.

I ran a 3 mile loop here and it rocked. At the halfway mark my runner’s knee started to kick-in, but it ended up fading away. Check plus.

On my way to work I picked up a post-run breakfast of 1 egg on whole wheat toast (salt, pepper, ketchup. yeah.) and a cup of coffee. Egg sandwiches always do the trick when I have a crazy morning at work and lunch will be late. Breakfast of mel championship. I’m not sure if that last sentence works, but I’m not changing it.

post-run breakfast

Technically this brings my coffee total to 1.5 cups already. Oh well, it’s freakin’ Friday. Tonight I’m meeting a friend for drinks in the city.. and if I can keep a Saturday long run in the back of my mind maybe I’ll minimize hangover damage?