Saturday, May 12, 2007

10 Miles!

Today's accomplishment was bypassing the Self magazine workout in the park to run my 10 miles.

I passed the Empire State Building, the Guggenheim, the Chrysler Building...all surrounding the Park as I undulated up and down hills gently.

My mind was a little blown. There were PEOPLE out there running...all kinds of people at all kinds of speeds and I have been running solo for the last few months.

After I adjusted to the running traffic, roller blading traffic, bicyclist, and the scent of horses from the horse-drawn carriages, I got into my groove.

I ratched my effort down because I wanted to reserve my energy to last the 10 miles. Today was hot and breezy in Central Park. This is only the second time I have run during the afternoon. (Yesterday was my the Bronx.)

10 miles meant 3 miles longer than the longest run I've done -- uh, two weeks ago.

And the last run I did was last Wednesday for 3 miles and almost passed out. (I forgot to eat breakfast first.) So I really had to psyche myself back into feeling fine about a long run and knowing that I would do it...and what better place to do my longest run than the city of my birth?

Manhattan is rather manicured. Lots of boutique shoppes. Cartier, Gucci and other names other people seem to know are found on 5th Avenue.

I crossed Madison Avenue and breakfast on Lexington after about a mile walk where I took in the doormen, the ladies with their little dogs, and architecture and flats that were gorgeous, but seemingly abandoned. Gorgeous stone facades and details guarded by smartly uniformed men. I appreciated their friendly return of my good mornings.

I had a lovely breakfast at Mon Petit Bistro of a Salmon-Florentine omelet with lovely red potatoes and a mint tea. I sat and thought about how ridiculous and wonderful my evening's romance was and then I thought about what 10 miles meant.

10 miles is almost half the marathon.

10 miles is ridiculously longer than I thought I could run 3 months ago.

I did it. I did it running the lake and past Strawberry Fields. I did it passing the breakdancers down by the racing boats and the Jazz combo a little past the Guggenheim. I did it past the Carousel. I went once and a half around the Park. The PARK!

Different than any other run, I found that I needed to make pit stops to use the rest room and replenish my water. I don't have a hydration system, so I sipped from Central Park's water fountains. New York water isn't as wonderful as I remembered it to be, but it's still pretty darn good. Especially in comparison to the $4.00 price tag the bottled water cost at the hot dog venders. WHAT???

I detoured to 3 gorgeous metal bridges with wooden slats and under two seemingly ancient arches of beautiful stone work. I was bathed in flower petals as they fell on my face.

My knees ache and my face and arms were coated with a white powdery substance that I noticed was salt when I licked my lips.

The Karminsky Experience's "Exploration" played twice and inspired me to keep running. I kept a smile on my face as I ran through my mind and thought of the Race.

Post run snack? A Good Humor strawberry Scooter Crunch (a favourite from childhood), and a banana frozen fruit bar (I wanted the potassium). Yes, I read the labels as I snacked. Definitely not my first choice of nutrients, but my inner child was happy. Chilly ice cream on a summery afternoon in New York reminded me of when I was little and visiting my family here.

Now a nap before abuelita comes and family friends from...30+ years ago! Que RICO!

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