That that don't kill me, can only make me stronger. I need you to hurry up now, cause I can't wait much longer. Kanye West, Stronger

Monday, March 31, 2008

Scotland Run!

It's so so good to be back!!!! I have missed blogging so much. I have so many post ideas in my head it will take me forever to catch up.

So while the Scotland 10K is fresh in my mind, I'll give a little recap.

First off, I totally forgot that I had signed up until I got a reminder email on Thursday. I had so so much going on this weekend that I actually was not looking forward to it. Fortunately, I knew several other people running, so I couldn't wuss out.

However, I woke up bright and early to a frigid Sunday morning. The fleece lined Nike running tights, sports bra, short sleeve dry fit t-shirt, the long sleeved dri fit t-shirt and thermal dri fit jacket I had prepared the night before didn't seem like enough.

Over that I layered on a sweatshirt, knee length parka, and lined wind pants. I really needed a hat and gloves but I lost those much earlier in the season.

Looking more like an Eskimo than a runner, I headed out into the "feels like 20 degree" spring morning.

Standing in the subway I was so cold I was power walking vigorously back and forth in the tunnel to try and create warmth. Even in my many layers it wasn't helping. I think I walked about a mile before the train came! At this point, I was wondering if I was going to have to run 6 miles in my parka!

When I got out at central park, I was pretty sure the entire population of Scotland was out for the race. I had never seen so many people for a race before...or so I thought. I have run several Revlon runs for women with 40,000 women, but this event of only around 7,000 seemed like so many more.

So I hustled to registration and bag check. I reluctantly shed my sweatshirt, parka and windpants. Fortunately I was wearing all black and the brightly shinning sun quickly went to work keeping me comfortable. Next I headed to the really long line for the toilets. There was like 5 minutes until the race started and at least 75 runners waiting in line! I thought I might actually miss the start, but I didn't want to be uncomfortable for an hour.
Fortunately, I made it out, I had to wait on the side of the street because it was so packed with runners. That is why you always line up several minutes faster than you actually run! Anyways, the horn went off to signal the start of the run and we didn't move. For the next ten minutes I just enjoyed the bagpipes and the kilts.

Finally we started moving, I found my way the street and started running. I knew with a crowd that thick, there was no point in wasting energy trying to bob and weave and cut through the pack. So I decided I would just sit back and enjoy the ride.

I hadn't run outside in a really long time, so I was happy to not be competitive. The route was one counterclockwise loop around the park, plus an extra .2 miles. It was nice to reacquaint myself with the Central Park landscape. The majority of the hills were over by mile four and what goes up must come down, so you always got a nice downhill recovery.

By mile 2 I was getting pretty warm, but I had pinned my bib over my jacket, so I couldn't unzip it. By mile 4 we reached the really sunny stretch between East 102nd and Cleopatra's Needle, the jacket had to come off.
The whole race was fairly effortless and quite enjoyable, aside from the occasional traffic jams.

Even at the end I couldn't really push through to sprint out the last half mile.

I finished in 1 hour and 47 seconds. Not bad for not running hills in a while. This translated to a 9:49 minute mile pace, finishing 909 and in the 49th percentile for my age group (20-29). 2289 for my age gender group. These races always reinforce my mediocrity, but whatever.

I thought the race demographics were quite interesting, so I pasted them below:

Total Finishers: Men – 3644 Women – 3284 Total – 6928
Age Group

12 - 19-35 men, 25 women, 60 total

20 - 29-784 men, 1307 women, 2091 total

30 - 39-1392 men, 1247 women, 2639 total

40 - 44-476 men, 278 women and 754 total

45 - 49 358 men, 197 women, total 555

It's interesting that there are twice as many women in the 20-29 age group, but a few more men in the 30-39 age group, and almost twice as many men in the 40-44 age group

Lots more fun coming up this week!


Lauren said...

Welcome back! This is totally random, but I remember you doing a post on how to drink without expanding the waste.

What is the difference between diet tonic and club soda? Are there any flavored diet drinks that go well with vodka? Thanks!

Robin said...

Sounds like you did well, I could never run that long!

Why do people do marathons- personal reasons or is there awards or a charity? Also, what is dry fit?

linds said...

Sounds like fun! I used to do road races all the time in High School, it'd be great to get back into them. How did you hear about this one and any others you do? I really only hear marathons advertised and I'm not that ambitious lol.

chandra said...

Sounds like you had a good race, nice work!! And good to have you back! :)

Natlie said...

Have you ever done pilates mat classes or the ones with equipment? If so, how do you feel those compare to physique 57. They seem to be all about the same price. Does physique's help with posture like pilates?

azelma said...

Oi, I don't know if I could race in the cold without gloves, I ALWAYS need them!

Betsy said...

good job!! i agree that there were so many people there!!!! incredibly crowded. ugh.

the goodie bag was just lots and lots of scottish flags on throwaway stuff. kinda funny though.

Melissa said...

Hi Lauren, diet tonic is an artificially sweetened carbonated beverage, regular tonic has lots of sugar, sort of like a sprite. Club soda, doesn't have sugar or artificial sweetner, it is more like seltzer.

One benefit to seltzer or club soda and lime with vodka is that because it is not sweet, it slows you down and each drink lasts longer.

Sugarfree red bull is the obvious vodka companion, depending on how you feel about artificial sweetners.

For more ideas see this hungry-girl post

Hi Robin, there are many reasons to train for a marathon, and believe me...anyone can do it. I trained with a team of 780 people and probably 400 of them had never run more than a mile. You can run for fitness, to challenge yourself, for charity, to meet new people, to relieve stress. I trained because I was annoyed I was such a bad runner, I wanted to prove I could do it. I also raised 3800 for Leukemia and Lymphoma.

Dry-fit is a type of material used in lots of athletic wear. It is breathable, so you don't sweat too much! It's actually really amazing, it keeps you warm and cool at the same time.

Linds: New York Road Runners hosts tons of running events each month This is for NYC, but I am sure all cities and most towns have something similiar.

Natlie: I have done mat and reformer pilates. I enjoyed them, but neither compare to P57. But I didn't take really exclusive classes, only at Sal Anthony and NYSC. I did have a personal pilates coach for a couple months a few years ago, but never saw significant results.

P57 definitely improved my posture and strengthened my back muscles.

Natlie said...

Really, that's surprising- I've heard reformer pilates are effective. What is the difference- all these mat classes sounds so similar!

Kat said...

What did you eat before a long race?

Melissa said...

Natlie- P57 is not really pilates. You can read my descriptin in the January archive to get a better sense of the class or check their website. The studio does have a pilates class called Mat 57 that is pretty good.

Reformer doesn't really get your heart rate up, especially since you are lying down most of the time. But it can build strength and flexibility. I didn't take enough classes to truly evaluate if it would make a different over several months. I only went once a week for a month.

Hi Kat, I don't eat much before morning workouts, because my body is just not ready to digest a lot of food early in the morning. So a piece of fruit or a kashi tlc bar will get me through 45-1 hours. I had a kashi tlc chewy peanut butter bar before the race. Then I had an apple on the way home before having a normal lunch around 12:30.

Everyone is different on what the can eat and digest. In earlier posts I talk more about nutrition during long runs. Carbs 30 minute to an hour before your workout, protein within 30 minutes after is a general rule.

In a nutshell, you need roughly a hundred calories after the first hour of running, then 100 calories every 45 minutes thereafter. Gus, gels, shot blocks, pretzels, sports drinks, granola bars, powerbars, and bananas are all things runners consume on long runs. It takes a while to get used to eating while running, several attempts for me actually, but it is essential once you are going for more than an hour and a half.

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