~ At The Heart Of It All ~
Sometimes, you are the ice cream, and sometimes you are the cookies. Yesterday, I was both.
I’ve been wanting to ride my bike and do some exploring and I also needed some Michelle time. When I feel stressed or overwhelmed, the best thing I can do for myself is to hop on the bike and just ride. Long and far. I had the route planned in my head and of course made room for changes along the way. I am two weeks into my Marine Corp Marathon training and lost 4 precious days of running because of my poopy quads. I really have no idea what is causing the discomfort, but I need to do the right thing and take rest days if need be. It’s mostly my left inner quad just above my knee. BLERGH.
So, the Michelle time I gave to myself was incredible. I packed a book, some money, my iPod shuffle and I was on my way. Being that I live in the southern part of Brooklyn, it is a pretty long ride to get to the Brooklyn Bridge. No problem, I got there and rode over my favorite bridge to my favorite West side Greenway. I was first introduced to the Greenway on a very cold day on January 31st. Scott took me on an awesome run that day. A “long” run for me. But, I digress.
The Greenway was lovely, if a bit crowded. The day was sunshiny and bright and glorious. As dorky as this may sound, I rode that Greenway with a grin on my face. I rode up 6 miles and passed where I ran last week with Eva. Lots and lots of runners/cyclists/walkers and everything in between. I just loved it. At 18 miles I decided to turn around and head back to my planned break in the ride. My “me” time. 8 miles later………
Brooklyn Bridge Park. BUT, before I entered the park I needed to complete the picture. I bought myself a fabulous ice cream sandwich at Jacque Torres Ice cream in Dumbo. A small unassuming place with some kick ass treats. It’s up there, that photo. Take a gander. I found a spot in the grass and just chilled with my treat and my book. I may have sat a good 60 minutes before I reluctantly got back on my bike for the trip home. I was at 26 miles and figured another 10 miles would put me back where I started.
Well, anybody who knows me, knows I have the worst sense of direction EVAH. My inner GPS is not fine-tuned yet. It has gotten a lot better over the last year as I’ve been exploring with my bike and even on foot, but there is always the chance of me getting hopelessly lost. I was riding along minding my own business, with that silly grin when all of a sudden, I was in Red Hook. I knew I was in Red Hook because I saw the area where the swimming pool is. Hmmm, WHAT? With a series of turns I breathed easy thinking I was going the right way, when I realized I rode around in a circle. I got really angry at myself. YES! I DID. Laugh if you must. It’s ok. It’s funny. Hilarious even.
14 miles later I made it home. 39.4 miles for the day. Gotta say, I was exhausted. Not so much my legs or body even. Just an overall exhaustion that overtook me and I was in my bed and sleeping before 10pm. I also decided beforehand to forgo the Long Training Run sponsored by NYRR, the next day. I knew I would never wake up in time, plus I didn’t think I could or should run long after the bike ride. Coach Caleb said that the 40 miles counts as my long workout for the weekend……
Today, I ran what was supposed to be a 4-5 mile recovery run. I am having a heck of a time learning how to pace myself. My recovery pace should be 10.30 or slower.
I ran 4.02 miles in 40.04. Too fast, I think.
4.02 miles 40.04
Mile 1 9.47 (too fast)
Mile 2 9.21 (wait, what??)
Mile 3 10.18 (right pace)
Mile 4 10.27 (better pace)
It’s all good. I am learning so much. You learn from doing. You learn from trying.
So, at the heart of it all, I had an amazing stress free (except for getting lost) great day by myself and I wouldn’t have it any other way.
“That’s the difference between me and the rest of the world! Happiness isn’t good enough for me! I demand euphoria!”
When we understand the privilege of what it means to be an athlete, we are in touch with, and rejoice in, our physical, mental and emotional strengths, and our endless possibilities. “Gloria Averbuch”
“Le coeur a ses raisons que la raison ne connaît point.
(Translation: The heart has its reasons which reason knows not.)”