Weekend Recap: Summer Streets & Running ‘Naked’August 15th, 2011 | Posted by in Blog Posts
This weekend was pretty productive and fun but still low-key, which was perfect. However, I started feeling a bit under the weather last night, and am spending today home from work resting up. Blah. I hate being sick, especially in the summer, so I’m hoping taking the day off to nap and lay down will help me feel better.
On Friday night, Dan and I went to one of our favorite restaurants for dinner, Covo. Despite its discrete location on 135th and 12th (really like Riverside Dr., but under Riverside down the steps), it was pretty packed. Highly recommended! We ate outside and shared appetizers of grilled calamari over arugula and sea scallops over tomato and spinach, and I had the special lobster risotto (yum!) while he had the penne vodka with sausage. Everything was so fresh and homemade. Yummmm.
Bright and early Saturday morning, I woke up around 7:25 to run the ~2 miles to Engineer’s Gate to meet Megan and Alex for a long run. Despite being compelled to stay in bed and sleep a few more hours, I was really looking forward to this run because we had a fun route planned: a bit in Central Park, down Park Avenue for Summer Streets, over the Brooklyn Bridge, and back over the Manhattan Bridge!
This was my first time taking advantage of Summer Streets this year, and sadly my last since I’m away next weekend. The route ended up being just over 12 miles, which was perfect! The pace was comfortable and the company was even better. Alex peeled off a bit earlier, while Megan and I ended our run at Starbucks, where we surprisingly chose iced teas vs. iced coffees…we were really parched! We hopped on the subway uptown and I was home before 10am to find Dan was just waking up. Jealousy set in for a bit but checking off my run early before the heat and crowds hit made me feel accomplished to take on the rest of the day. I made banana french toast and coffee for breakfast and ate it in bed. The best!
Around 12, Dan and I left to go walk around the High Line. I had been once before, but haven’t been back since the new section was opened. We began at the most downtown point and walked North. It was gorgeous!
By the time we got to the end, we were a bit hungry…lucky for us, we found a rollerblading rink surrounded by Food trucks at the tip of the High Line called The Lot. Dan got a falafel sandwich and fries from Taim, while I was all about the ice cream sandwich from Coolhaus.
We spent the rest of the afternoon walking around Chelsea Market and the Village until he had to head back home, so I hit up the Union Square Greenmarket and wandered around a bit more until I met my mom and her friend for dinner. They were in the city to see a show so we met up at Saju Bistro for dinner. For Times Square-area dining, it was one of our better options. Nothing fantastic, as I would have preferred to venture to a different neighborhood since Times Square is my second-least favorite area in the city (behind Herald Square aka the pit of hell) and certainly not the best dining. But it was close and easy, and always nice to see my mom.
I had plans with a friend tonight but she had to reschedule, so I was planning on staying in. But since I’m super creepy and love to invite myself to things, I replied:
Done and done! About an hour later, I was headed crosstown where I enjoyed a chill evening with Christine and Susan, watching “She’s The Man”, drinking wine, eating strawberry parfaits, and talking about just about everything. It was exactly the relaxing Saturday night I needed. Like I said in my last post, I’ve been doing a lot of meeting and hanging out with other runners here in NYC lately and it’s really helping NYC (finally) feel like ‘home‘ to me.
By the time we left, it was almost 2am (yikes!) and I found myself in a torrential downpour which didn’t let up at all Sunday. Perfect, since I slept in until around 11:30am and took my time eating breakfast in bed and watching TV until I finally got my act together to head out the door to run. But when I went to grab my Garmin, I discovered it was dead.
I debated waiting around another hour to let it get some juice, but instead put on my oldschool sportswatch and headed out the door. It’d suck to stand around in the rain waiting for a signal, anyways. I admit I felt a bit naked without my Garmin and my iPod at first. It was so quiet, too quiet. But as I looped around the bridle path, dodging puddles, I realized how free I felt. The sound of the rain was soothing, my legs felt surprisingly good, and the park was about empty. I didn’t worry about my pace or the watch beeping every mile, my legs were free to just run. Without the distraction of music, my mind was free to wander.
I started running with an iPod about 2 years ago when I was struggling to get out the door on solo early morning runs, and I only started running with my Garmin this winter since it was a Christmas present. While I love being able to see my pace/distance for workouts and long runs, and listening to the radio sure does take my mind off how many miles or minutes remain, for 8+ rainy miles I reverted back to just running in it’s purest form. Naked without technology, the way I enjoyed it for so many years. Something so simple felt so great.
I’m not going to give up the Garmin quite yet, because I think pace feedback is pretty useful and I’d feel wasteful not using the pricey gadget, but I am going to challenge myself to run without my iPod for at least two weeks. It’d do me some good to listen to my own thoughts, let my mind wander, and get in tune with my body on runs instead of 92.3 NOW. After all, I never race or do workouts with my iPod or when I run with friends, so hopefully it is a positive change instead of a hard adjustment.
What was the best part of your weekend? What are your thoughts on running with a GPS watch and/or iPod? Do you ever feel dependent on these gadgets, or enjoy the value they bring?