Monday, December 26, 2011

Christmas In Port

20 Miles in the last 3 days. And I took off for good behavior for Christmas Day too...  ;-)

Port Washington is a great place to run.  There are so many places to run through too, the possibilities seem endless.  I would be totally surprised if there wasn't already a running club in the area as a result.  However the ideas of starting my own formidable running team are swirling in my head. 

Amazing that nearly a year ago today, the entire nightmare had begun of injury followed by more injury followed by my mom's death, Karen's loss of work, and all of the other wonderful (NOT) things that come with it.

I can't tell you now, how relieved I feel to be running, or should I say, basking, in this wonderful sunlight by Manhasset Bay.

I decided on Christmas Eve to run from the intersection of Port Washington Blvd.,  and Northern Boulevard to my home.  I took a short break trying to recharge my useless MotoActv watch (the worst watch that a lot of money can buy) and ran back to the Whole Foods parking lot to collect my SUV.  

The run I did is a really nice varied run.  There are private streets and big roads, and there are straightaways, curves, and hills.  Country Club Drive off of Port Washington Blvd. has one big fat ascent.  It felt so good on the calves too (I must be a masochist, right?).  One thing that didn't feel so good was when this huge St. Bernard, for whom I will refer to as "Cujo", came running from the back of its home on Farmview Drive, moments after I turned right onto it from Hewlett Lane, in the Flower Hill section of Port.  I think there must have been an electric fence, because this huge beast had nothing that I could visibly see to stop it from mauling me!

And today, again I ran outside, this time from my gym, the Training Station, over on Channel Drive.  I did the same run all the way out to Port & Northern.  It was a bit warmer today (45 as opposed to 30), but I wore my Asics jacket to get a good heated sweat going on.  The plan worked.  I'm down to 160 now.  Amazing how my body works too...I didn't even get the urge to run until I was 3/4 of the way back and passing Nassau Knolls cemetery on my left, that I got the runner's high.  But once I did, I was kicking butt (oh, and the Red Bull I bought at the Mobil, near the Landmark Diner didn't hurt either!) 

I love running down Main Street with its decorative stone crosswalks.  Also are the endless BMWs, Mercedes, and SUVs too.  Nothing like that in East Harlem... That's for sure.  :-)

By the time I passed Ayhan's, I was really motoring, flying fast than the Canadian Geese along the Bay on Shore Road.
So much to prove this coming year, and so much to achieve.  A world of running awaits in this renewed and recharged soul!

Anyway, and like I said, there are so many places to run in and around Port Washington, Manhasset, Plandome, etal.  The potential for great runs lay ahead of me and I can't wait!!!

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Port Washington By Day!

Today was my first full day of athletic frolicking through the neighborhood of Port Wash.  I drove to the Training Station, where they took my car (via valet, no less!) and I went inside.  It's a very nice gym.  True it's not one of those Equinox gyms where most of the stuck-up pretentious people go to spend $180 dollars a month, but it was nicely appointed with stone ground showers and temperature controls, tv's in the locker rooms, a eucalyptus steam room, and a good ole-fashioned sauna too.

There's baby-sitting, massages, a rec area, and a juice bar, and the towels, while not eucalyptus-medicated and fluffy, are a little better than the cheese-grating towels at NYSC.

I ran 1 mile, then another one, and then I said, "I need to go out and run!"  You know me, treadmills suck!

So in a short-sleeve t-shirt, and shorts that were nearly pornographic in size, I took my nearly clad bod out and about in the beautiful town of Port Washington (Manorhaven, North Port, Baxter, ehhhh WHATEVER YOU WANT TO CALL IT, FOR PETE'S SAKE!!!).  And ran to Shore Boulevard.

The gym is also nice because it's not too far from where the start of the Shore Road Running trail begins.  Again, I felt like as if I was running along Chelsea and the West Side (just without the big buildings or the big ruckus either!).

 As I ran, I would stop to take photos, partially because my Motowatch wasn't able to get a signal (later on Karen would tell me that when she ran she got a signal right away from her Garmin 310XT.  Score one for Garmin, I guess). 

I even ran out to the edges of the piers as you can clearly see on the photos above.  It felt pretty exhiliarating (as well as cold too, brrrrr!!!!)

It was a really nice run.  And I'm glad it was too, because there are going to be a lot of runs along this path, and I need to make sure I don't get bored of the scenery anytime soon either. 

Just a few feet away from the water in some cases.  And you can feel the sound of the water breaking too (though just a little bit).

Different areas looked like different places.  In the photo above, it almost felt like I was running along La Jolla in California.  Strange, huh?

Empty benches thanks to Mother Nature, but I'm sure once the summer comes around it should be bustling again.
The sidewalk is not too badly cracked.  Evidence that I live in a nicer neighborhood.

I love how the sun beams over this park bench.  Memories from the past and new ones to form for sure!

All that's missing from here is my yacht!

Back to the gym for another mile. And then I went off to do weights.  Took a great shower and really liked the place.  What does this all mean?


Monday, December 5, 2011

Port Washington has a new runner!

Eventually and at some point, I will post my blog about this year's New York City Marathon.  I will tell you that I was very pleased with the outcome.  Especially when you consider all that I've been through this year, the NYC Marathon this year was awesome.

I don't want to beat around the bush with this, but I am uber-ecstatic to report that we've moved out of Manhattan, and we now live in Port Washington, NY.  Quite familiar I am with this area, this was ironically Karen's choice after we decided a place that would give us a better living space, and all the while keep us close to Queens and Manhattan.  You just can't beat a 37 minute express train to Penn Station.  It's like we have the best of both worlds.  Also, living very close to Sands Point, affords us the ability to get some not good, but GREAT runs in.  True, NOTHING will ever compare to Central Park, but I will find a way to make this neighborhood as fun now, as it was for me back during 2003-2005 when I used to frequent an ex of mine who lived in Flower Hill (PS - for her peace of mind-in case she reads this, which I highly highly doubt, her name is to never be mentioned, ever).

Tonight (Mon. Dec 5) was my first run in nearly a month.  Had not run since the NYC Marathon.  Mother Nature gave me a chill and a lot of fog.  But it did not disrupt me from doing what my body had been craving for, for so long now.

So, I brought the gym bag with me to work.  I changed at quarter of five.  Left promptly at 5:30. Got home at 6:05, and was out the door running at 6:10.

It was chilly!  I ran back inside to get my marathon jacket on.  The temp was around 50, but with the low hanging fog all around me, the wetness of it all got right down into my 46-year old bones.

Out into the dark, I began my run into a foreign area.  Didn't bring my headlamp though, darn.  'Must hi-step', I kept reminding myself, so as not to get my feet caught on any unsuspecting raised a/o broken sidewalk.

I ran down till I got to Shore Road, and headed east all the way to Sunset Park.  The jogging trail along the water was very reminiscent to the path along the west side and Chelsea piers (another area that I will miss running through, wahh!)

I had to be back in time before Cindy got off of work, but remembered something Karen had mentioned about getting food.  So I texted Cindy, and as part of my "run", I ran into Stop N Shop.  Imagine a grown man running home while clutching a chicken like a football down Shore road at night and in the fog!!!

I ran a little over 4 miles and it felt great!