044 Queens Half Marathon: 1:28:39

Sex/ Age Bib Overall Place Age Place Finish Time Pace/ Mile AG % M32 119 56 18 1:28:39 6:46 66.8 % In preparation for the Queens Half Marathon (and by preparation I mean ‘carb-o-loading’) Erika took me to her favorite Italian restaurant, Pisticci’s. Upon arriving we were immediately greeted by a server who knew Erika. I was impressed. We were promptly seated and ordered our drinks, mine being a fancy beer and Erika opting for a fancy cocktail. The food was amazing. For my entree I had a goat cheese and red pepper stuffed ravioli, topped with a vodka sauce laced with shrimp. Perfection! I’m not sure if any of you were out Friday night, but around 8:30PM all hell broke loose. The skies opened up and an intense thunderstorm ensued! It looked straight out of a movie and I blame the full moon. I was once again impressed, when Erika insisted that we would have no problem getting a cab right across the street, and she was spot on. It was a great night and I was no doubt ready for the Queen’s Half the next morning. RACE DAY At 5AM it was already 80 degrees. The Queen’s Half Marathon (most Royal of races…) takes place in Corona Park Queens, which is an easy subway ride. I always love pre-race subway rides to the course because at every stop groups of runners get on. Its like a real-life Nike commercial or something. At baggage we met Erika’s friend Jen and then headed to our corrals. Up in the front, as the announcements were being made ( “Don’t try and PR as it’s brutally hot” and “Be careful”) I was in my head and getting amped up for the run. As the gun went off I held onto the lead pack (which was thick as thieves) for the first mile before it thinned out and the speedsters took off. The first 6 miles were an out and back course along College Point Blvd. At mile 2’s water station I passed my buddy Lam and yelled out to him! It was right around this point when I thought to myself “Holy cow, it’s freakin’ hot already and the sun isn’t even blazing yet!” At mile 3 there was a factory or something spewing some sort of smoke and for a moment I felt like we were running a Sci-Fi race in the not so distant industrial future. Think Blade Runner... read more

043 NYC Triathlon

Sex/ Age Age Place Overall Place Swim 0.9M T1 Bike 24.8M T2 Run 6.2M Total Time M32 23 66 18:23 4:18 1:11:25 1:29 41:44 2:17:17 The NYC Triathlon would be my 4th triathlon completed and the 1st attempt at an Olympic Distance. Swim: 1.5K Bike: 40K Run: 10K Gotta love those even numbers… The day before the race, Erika and I volunteered at the Run for Central Park. We were bike marshals and got to ride in front of the race clearing the path for the leaders. It was very cool and totally fun! That night I dropped my bike off into transition. That’s a mandatory rule. No way can you roll in with your bike the next day, think of the chaos! SIDENOTE: I have never been to a triathlon with this many racers. There were like 3,000 bikes! Erika and I had a really nice dinner, mine consisting of pasta and shellfish of course! I think I was asleep by 10:30PM which was great because I needed some rest. RACE DAY My alarm went off at 5AM and wow was I ever ready to get this day going! I was so excited, mainly because the most stressful part of any race for me is the night before and that had passed. It was game time. I met Brandon down in transition and after a quick setup we headed off to watch the Pros come in. There would be something like 20 waves of people, starting at 6AM with the Pros and finishing at 8AM. Since he and I were at the tail end, we had 2 hours to kill. We stationed ourselves right where the swimmers come out and run to T1. It was awesome! The Pros make it look so easy and they are also nasty fast right out of the soup! Once that excitement was over we walked up towards the swim start and met up with Daniel, Alex and Alex’s wife. We hung out watching the swimmers go by. I had a rice and bean burrito for breakfast followed by a banana. One of the things I enjoyed about this race (and hated it at the same time for different reasons) is that with so many wave starts it makes for great race viewing, like watching 20 separate races! As it got closer to the 7:39-7:45 start times we all made our way into the age corrals. I made a few friends there by... read more

042 Aquathlon Stars and Stripes

Sex/ Age Overall Place Swim Place Run Place Swim 1.5K Run 5K Total Time M32 63 130 4 35:40 20:40 56:21 Right now, if I had one wish it would be ‘Speedy Swimmer.’ Thank you. The ‘Aquathlon Stars and Stripes’ is a 1.5K swim followed by a 5K run and is put on by NYC Swim, the same people who organize races like The Great Hudson River Swim. It is one week before the NYC Triathlon and is marketed as a training race. Since I’m doing the Tri (and I actually enjoy swimming the mighty Hudson) I figured I would give it a go. Erika was racing the NYRR Dash and Splash 10K at the same time so I prepared us a race-worthy dinner the night before. I whipped up some homemade tomato sauce over linguine… easy, simple, delicious, and totally energizing. RACE DAY Woke up at 7AM sharp and got the Cafe Bustelo going. Jim from ‘Dad Posse’ met me in front of my apartment at 8 and we biked down to 56th street and the West Side. Todd met us in line and we all got checked in and organized our respective run transition areas. Transition is like 1000 times easier without bikes to maneuver around. Once we were all situated we started the walk up to 72nd Street which is where the swim begins. We chilled in the grass for awhile then lined up in race order to take the plunge into the river. One by one we filed into the water. Once NYC Swim had everyone in a herd before the first buoy, they would sound the horn. I adjusted my goggles and was bobbing around on my back when the countdown started… 3. 2. 1. GO! Mayhem. As anyone who has ever done an open water race will tell you, it’s mayhem. After doing quite a bunch of these and now knowing what to expect it really doesn’t phase me. Its kinda like being stuck in a weird traffic jam, you know, there is a merge up ahead and everyone is cutting in. Once we hit the first buoy and took a left heading south, it opened up and I got into my rhythm. Last Wednesday my friend Brandon (who is a very good swimmer) gave me a number of useful tips about my form. This was my first attempt at using this knowledge. Did it help? I sure think so, I felt like... read more